"There was a sign," Hodencamp said. "Thousand Oaks, population 1,600. The country was so free, that we kind of stopped and looked around and bought a piece of property that moment."
Hodencamp, like some of the other participants, has a city landmark--Hodencamp Road--named for her family. But as she explained it to Carlson, it was more a result of growing up with the town than a tribute.
After they had been here a few years, she and her husband bought a second property, a one-room cabin. They went to City Hall in Ventura to ask to have electricity run into the cabin, which was on an unnamed road.
"So the officials or whoever was at City Hall said, 'We're going to name that Hodencamp Road,' " she told Carlson. "I didn't know for sure. I didn't say anything. I thought they were probably kidding me. Sure enough, it was on the map, the first thing we noticed."
That casual attitude at City Hall extended to developments as well. After Hoover left ranching he went into construction, building homes all over Thousand Oaks.
"We used to have to go to Ventura to get permits for the grading," he said. "I remember going down there and trying to lay out a plan for what we were going to do, and the guy said, 'Well, you know more about it than we do, so just go ahead and do it like you want to do it.' "
For Tina Carlson, the job of coordinating the project has been made somewhat easier by the fact that her father-in-law, Fred Carlson, 75, knows most of the pioneers who are still living. Carlson opened his building materials store on Thousand Oaks Boulevard in 1946. By selling sand, gravel, blocks and steel, he bumped into just about everybody in the town.