Carmel, California has always been a community of artists, writers, and freethinkers. During the early part of its rich history, the area was home to Robinson Jeffers, Mary Austin, Ansel Adams, Charles Greene, Jack London, George Sterling, Upton Sinclair, and Henry Miller, among other great artists of the twentieth century. During the late 1980s, actor and director Clint Eastwood served as mayor.
While much about Carmel has changed since the days when Robinson Jeffers could be seen strolling the beach, the area remains one of America's most beautiful. It is also home to many of America's most charming but rarely seen cottages. In Carmel's residential district--a very private, heavily wooded area surrounding the shops and tourist attractions of the town's often busy main street--there are no sidewalks or streetlights. The U.S. Postal Service does not offer mail delivery. Homes have no addresses; they are simply known by name. Here, it is not uncommon for tourists, so intrigued by the uniqueness of the local architecture, to climb the fences of private homes to get a closer look or snapshot of the house on the other side. Now, for the first time, 34 of these homes can be seen more advantageously, in more than 270 specially commissioned and archival exterior and interior photographs.