For as long as humans have inhabited the Antelope Valley, Joshua (or Yucca) trees have coexisted alongside them.
In 1857, a group of Mormons were passing through the Mojave Desert on their way to Salt Lake City. As they traveled, the arms of the Yucca trees appeared to be pointing and guiding them toward their destination. Therefore, they began calling them "Joshua" trees after the man who led the Israelites into the Promised Land.
In this photograph, students from the Second Lancaster Grammar School spend their recess sitting in a large Joshua tree located at the rear schoolyard.
The Second Lancaster Grammar School, first occupied in early 1890, was built by resident O.B. Allen.
Photo courtesy of MOAH Collections