During World War II, the Army installed military barracks adjacent to the Bates Ranch House. Soldiers observed and monitored the Southern California Coast at Rincon Point for Japanese invasion ships. At this same time, close friends of the Bates family were forced to relocate because of their nationality. Robert W. Bates took over the running of The Ota Farm to ensure its safety until the owners were able to return.
While rebuilding their livelihood and farm, the Ota’s very generously presented the Bates Family with a most impressive stone lantern. Mrs. Bates gradually created a Japanese Garden to suitably showcase such a treasure. These beautiful photos of the garden were taken by photographer David Powdrell.