Dashaway Stables, constructed in 1888, was a branch of the Lick Livery and Hack Company, which provided stabling for horses, carriages for rent, and drivers for hire in the city of San Jose. With a reputation as one of the best such stables on the West Coast, it advertised excursions to nearby scenic destinations, with drivers doubling as tour guides. Though the stables were destroyed in 1928, a replica stands in History Park today.
Part of the Lick Livery and Hack
Company of San Jose, Dashaway Stables was built in 1888 at 130 South Second
Street, and run by Frederick Tennant and William Connell. The stables rented
hacks (carriages) and provided the equivalent of a taxi service, with drivers for
hire. People could also pay to keep their horses at Dashaway. It quickly earned
a reputation for excellence in organization, management, equipment, drivers, and
horse teams, and advertised drives through the scenic Santa Clara Valley
foothills and mountains.
By 1892, it had changed hands,
owned by Lyman M. Hale, a former oil businessman from Pennsylvania. According
to the Commercial History of San Jose,
California, at this time Dashaway Stables offered vehicles from single
buggies to fourteen-passenger wagons for excursions of interest to tourists and
pleasure-seekers: Lick Observatory and Mount Hamilton, Palo Alto, Saratoga
Springs, and the Almaden Mines. Knowledgeable drivers were emphasized,
indicating the drivers served as tour guides on these excursions. Dashaway was
also one of the first San Jose businesses to offer a reservation system for
patrons, beginning with Lyman Hale taking reservations by mail or telegraph, and
later by telephone.