Following is a story of our bride, Mercedes Pujol, our very own Wine Country Wedding Chapel bride!
Long before gold was discovered in California, most of the land ownerships were held in large tracts of land, called Ranchos. Originally granted by Spain to prominent persons, the Ranchos traded hands for various reasons.
Domingo Pujol was a San Francisco lawyer, born in Spain, acquired a large section of a Rancho, currently where Old Town Temecula is now. He subdivided the lots and sold them.
Mercedes, his bride, came to Temecula in 1884 to settle her husband’s estate and donated parcels to the now “city”. Several streets are named in honor of her and her dearly departed.
Wine Country Wedding Chapel is located on 6th Street, between Old Town Front St and Mercedes Street (named for her). Pujol Street is on the west side of town.
To honor her, as the wife of Domingo Pujol and the donations she made to the City, we have her picture in the chapel and she has the look of a beautiful bride, as she surely was.
In the Chapel, the main living room is called the Mercedes Room. Marriage ceremonies are conducted in front of the fireplace. Prior to 1917, before there was a church in Temecula, couples had choices of going to Los Angeles or San Diego to marry in a church. It was custom in the “old west” throughout the western part of the U.S., to marry in the home of family or friends.