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The Goat Lady’s House

In the 1980s, people walking, jogging, bicycling or driving up Evergreen Ave. would often notice a goat staring at them from inside the gate on the corner of Hawthorne. Some did not like being stared at, but others enjoyed seeing Toby, the goat’s name. The house came to be known as “The Goat Lady’s House.”  Owner Candace Johnson refused to pay for garbage collection.  Toby consumed most of the garbage. The fireplace, the only source of heat in the house, burned the paper and cardboard. Cans, bottles, and anything else the goat refused to eat ended up in concrete-lined lily ponds. John Bone had built the house in 1905.  He and his wife, Lillian, lived there until they died, John in 1946 and Lillian in 1967.  Lillian’s hobby had been growing exotic lily pads in concrete-lined ponds that John had constructed. Candace Johnson bought the house in 1977. When she decided to sell it in 1995, the Marin Association of Realtors referred to it as “the famous Goat Lady’s House.” The yard was overgrown with old fruit trees, shrubs and vines.  The lily ponds were full whatever the goat had refused to eat, and covered with dirt.