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Monday, March 31, 2008

LECTURE ON THE LIFE AND TIMES OF ORPHA KLINKER

Orpha Klinker sports a new "bob" haircut - date unknown - photo in the collection of Phyllis Hansen.

SAVE THIS IMPORTANT DATE
Thursday April 24, 2008
7;30 PM
Lecture on the Life and Times of California artist Orpha Klinker
by Phyllis Hansen
Sponsored by the San Fernando Valley Historical Society
Andreas Pico Adobe - Mission Hills

Phyllis is an Advisor to The Museum of the San Fernando Valley
Historian for the Hollywood Chapter of the Daughters of the American Revolution
Member of the Board of Directors of the Campo de Cahuenga Historical Memorial Association.

Sunday, March 30, 2008

MUSEUM OF THE SAN FERNANDO VALLEY SETS CALENDAR OF EVENTS


Orpha Klinker Hawaii Trip © Photo in the collection of Phyllis Hansen - 2008 Your Museum continues to collect date and objects related to the life of the great California artist, Orpha Klinker.
MUSEUM'S CALENDAR
Elizabeth Morin, member of The Museum's Board, has established a scaffolding for the "official" calendar of our Museum for the rest of 2008 and the year 2009. I have asked our advisor Phyllis Hansen to manage this calendar. If you have an event that you would like to be included as a one-time or recurring activity, please contact me for this next month's new business section of the meeting agenda.

Friday, March 28, 2008

JAMES MONROE HIGH SCHOOL'S ACADEMY IS A WINNER!

The great commonality between our Museum and the educational concept of "learning communities" is that they are both experience-oriented. All human beings, adults as well as young people, learn better when they are motivated to do so. At James Monroe High School in the north San Fernando Valley, teachers and administrators have organized classes into learning academies, where students learn all the things they need for a California high school diploma within groups sharing their common career interests. One such grouping is the highly successful Hospitality, Tourism & Recreation Academy.
In the HTRA, students do writing assignment with themes of real interest to them. They are stimulated to learn math, government and history through assignments attached to their long-term career objectives.
Lead teacher Jeff Fischer and faculty member Heidi Mankoff are involving the community in student research assignments. The teachers have assembled a strong community and business advisory committee. Included are: Jay Aldrich, Director of the San Fernando Valley Conference and Visitors Bureau, Amy Briley Human Resources Employment Manager
Six Flags Magic Mountain, Gerald Fecht President of The Museum of the San Fernando Valley, Robert L. Jefferson Community Outreach Recruiter - Staffing and Training Universal Studios. Aleea LeBlanc Director of Human Resources Warner Center Marriott, Dee Lewis Los Angeles World Airports Airport Guide Public and Community Relations (Van Nuys Airport) and Kimberly Welden of the Los Angeles City Department of Parks & Recreation.

THANKS FOR A GREAT BOARD MEETING

Orpha Klinker and her sister Hazel © - Photo by permission of Phyllis Hansen 2008 - This image had to have been taken in the 1920s
Thanks to all who attended the meeting of the Board of Directors and Advisors' meeting Wednesday March 26th. We were joined by Alice Hart of Valley Village, and John Heaphy of Glendale.
We'll ask Sean LeBlanc, member of The Museum's Performing Arts Committee and owner of Valentino's Costumes to see if we can get closer on the era of Orpha's clothes here.

Thursday, March 27, 2008

BOB'S BIG BOY, VINTAGE CARS -WHAT A GREAT VALLEY TO GROW UP IN.

Bob's Big Boy Matchbook Cover - Gift to The Museum of the San Fernando Valley from Gary Fredburg - 2008
Bob's Big Boy Restaurants in Burbank, Van Nuys, Glendale and Canoga Park were essential elements of teen-age life in the San Fernando Valley in the 1950s and '60s. In 1993 Bob's on Van Nuys Boulevard was demolished marking an end to the great cruising adventure of decades.
Gary Fredburg, vice president of your Museum, calls attention to the story in today's Daily News (March 27, 2008) entitled "Hot Cars, Double Deckers Top Bob's Big Boy Menu". A Burbank resident and car lover, Gary believes that automobiles and coffee shops are important part of San Fernando Valley history and culture.
Vintage Postcard - Panoramic View of Burbank, California.
Gift to The Museum of the San Fernando Valley by Gary Fredburg 2008
The view looks north toward Bob Hope Airport then called the Lockheed Airport. The cars and clothing styles on the car might give us an idea of the card's date of printing.

Monday, March 24, 2008

MUSEUM BOARD MEETING ON WEDNESDAY

Vintage Post Card - Reseda, California - 1965 - Collection of The Museum of the San Fernando Valley 0 Gift of Gary Fredburg 2007

DON'T FORGET - Board meeting of The Museum of the San Fernando Valley
Wednesday March 26th, 2008 at the Lankershim Arts Center
time: 6 pm to 7:30 pm.

DANA GIOLA LECTURE AT BARNSDALL THEATER

Dana Giola Lecture - Photo in Archives of The Museum of the San Fernando Valley 2008
Several members of the Board of Directors of The Museum of the San Fernando Valley had the opportunity to attend a major lecture by Dana Giola, the Director of the National Endowment of the Arts. The lecture was part of the Zocalo series co-sponsored by Pasadena Public Radio and the Los Angeles Cultural Affairs Department.
Here Willard Simms, Olga Garay and Gerald Fecht discuss Ms. Garay's concept of an arts ombudsman for the San Fernando Valley and a special Valley Arts Initiative. Olga Garay is the Manager of the Los Angeles Cultural Affairs Department.
Will Simms (at the left) is a member of The Museum's Board of Directors and Chairman of the Museum's Performing Arts Committee. Gerald Fecht (at the right) is the president of The Museum.

HISTORICAL NOTE AT CAMPO DE CAHUENGA

Note by Jessie Benton Fremont - Photo by Gerald Fecht for The Museum of the San Fernando Valley
"This inscription is the handwriting of Jessie Benton Fremont, wife of General John C. Fremont. It is this wording used on the bronze table now to be seen at Campo de Cahuenga, where it was placed in 1924, when the Fremont - Pico memorial Park was dedicated in honor of the signers of the famous treaty of Cahuenga."

HUGE VICTORY FOR SAN FERNANDO VALLEY HISTORY

Phil's Diner Victory
Richard Bogy has just shared this great news for the Valley's Museum Community.

A New life for Phil’s Diner

The 1920’s was the era of the dining car style “diner”. One of the grandest examples was in North Hollywood and was called Phil’s Diner.

The North Hollywood (then called “Lankershim”) Southern Pacific train depot opened in 1892. For the first thirty or so years it served principally as a shipping point for the area’s rich farming products. By the early 1920’s North Hollywood had become a bustling well-to-do town. In 1923 nearby Toluca Lake was created as a first “bedroom community” for Los Angeles in the Valley. In that same year Lakeside Golf Club opened. By the 1920’s the Lankershim train depot served as many passenger trains as freight trains and the depot needed a restaurant for passengers to eat while they waited. To serve that need, Phil’s Diner was created.

Phil’s Diner was designed by Charles Amend, and like so many other famous diners of the day (including the famed Pacific Dining Car in downtown Los Angeles ) the building was essentially pre-fabricated and moveable on the back of a flatbed. A diner like Phil’s was often moved from the original location. The diners were even made to look and feel like a railroad “dining car”.

As the years passed by, the train depot finally closed and then North Hollywood transitioned from a thriving community to a blighted and forgotten industrial area, Phil’s fell on hard times. The original distinctive pink and black colors become faded and began to peel. Many of us – who just loved the history behind Phil’s – would still make the occasional visit and sit either at the wooden counter or at the single line of small tables. By the end you usually found yourself alongside a blue collar worker or a new immigrant, enjoying what was certain to be a one way ticket to heartburn; but it didn’t matter, because it was Phil’s.

Finally, Phil’s died. The last “blue plate” special was served and the doors were locked – it seemed likely – for all time. After several years of boarded doors and windows, the little building was raised on timbers and moved several blocks from the original site, where it now sits on a vacant lot behind a locked construction fence.

On March 20th Phil’s Diner was given new life. The CRA Board approved a plan for a new modern office building, a luxurious Laemmle’s 8-screen Theater, and a restored and operating Phil’s Diner. The Diner will be moved to the corner of Lankershim and Weddington – across from the El Portal Theater – where it will be restored to its 1920’s condition and reopen as a restaurant, and to become the centerpiece of the theater courtyard.

The effort to save Phil’s was the work of many, including Councilman LaBonge, the CRA, the property developer, the current owner of Phil’s and Laemmle’s Theaters. The community must also be acknowledged for their diligent efforts to protect and restore Phil’s. At the CRA hearing to approve the project, a broad section of the community came to speak in favor of the motion. In fact, twenty five people spoke all in favor of the project, with an (almost unprecedented) no one opposed. Thank you to Councilman LaBonge, the CRA, and everyone else who came together to bring Phil’s Diner back to where it belongs!

Saturday, March 22, 2008

CITRUS SUNDAY IS APPROACHING

Vintage Postcard - Collection of The Museum of the San Fernando Valley - The San Fernando Railroad Tunnel - Southern Pacific RR. Gift of Gary Fredburg 2007
The San Fernando Tunnel allowed the Valley to ship fruit, especially oranges and peaches all over America.
++++++++ and, now a message about Citrus Sunday from John Bwarie
Yes, folks, there is free food in the Valley thanks to our agricultural past. In yards throughout the San Fernando Valley, you can see limbs full of oranges, grapefruit, tangerines, and other citrus fruit looming over fences and rooftops. Often, much of this fruit goes to waste because residents can't eat it all themselves or even give it away.

On Sunday, April 6, 2008, from 9am to 3pm, Citrus Sunday is a way to help solve that problem! In just 30 minutes, you can help provide free food to those who need it most: the over 150,000 people living in the Valley everyday who are
"food-insecure" (a term used by a recent UCLA study to describe those who have to choose between eating nutritious meals and other essential expenses).

This is an easy service opportunity for anyone & everyone to be a part of; it's as easy as 1-2-3:

1. Pick the citrus fruit from trees in your yard
2. Put the washed fruit in plastic bags.
3. Drop it off at one of the Fire Stations in the Northwest Valley
listed below.
(You can also help by telling others to pick citrus fruit from their
yard, offering to pick citrus fruit from other people's yards (with
their permission), or organizing a "citrus drive" at a local school, at
your workplace, or with a community group.)

The following participating Fire Stations in the Northwest Valley will be accepting the citrus fruit on Sunday, April 6, between 9am and 3pm:

Lake Balboa: Station 100
Winnetka: Station 104
Sherman Oaks: Station 88
Porter Ranch: Stations 8 & 28
Chatsworth: Stations 96 & 107
North Hills: Station 87
Granada Hills: Station 18
Encino: Station 83
West Hills: Station 106
Northridge: Station 70
(For directions to Fire Stations go to: www.lafd.org/fsloc.htm)

You can view and print the flyer with all the details here:
http://cd12.org/cd12homepage/cd12cd12homepage256550974_02252008.pdf

Also, you can watch a short video on last year's Citrus Sunday event at
http://www.lacity.org/council/cd12/video/cd12video290550477_02042008.htm

Please share this information with your friends, neighbors, coworkers, and family. With your help, this event can surpass even last year's success.

Thanks, and Happy Citrus Picking, JOHN

John Bwarie
Deputy District Director
Office of Councilmember Greig Smith
Northridge office: 818-756-8501
City Hall office: 213-473-7012

ORPHA KLINKER'S FLAG FOR LOS ANGELES

Orpha Klinker's Flag for the City of Los Angeles - Photo by Phyllis Hansen - Advisor to The Museum of the San Fernando Valley
When I wonder where the great California artist Orpha Klinker got her talent and energy, I need only to be around Phyllis Hansen, Orpha's kinswoman. Energy and hard work has to be part of this family's genetic makeup. While in the process of creating the new Campo de Cahuenga website. Phyllis played detective and discovered this silk flag's great seal of Los Angeles.
You will have to wait with me for Phyllis to tell us more about this incredible find.
Jerry Fecht

JIM BRAMMER JOINS TARZANA MUSUEM BOARD

The newly organized Tarzana Museum of History and Culture is busy building its governing committee. Among the museum's most recent committee associates is Tazana photographer, Jim Brammer.

You can check out Jim Brammer's craftsmanship at his photography website:
www.stateoftheartimages.com

Jim Brammer displays Tarazana Museum's new polo shirts

Friday, March 21, 2008

"TARZANA SWINGS" INTO REALITY

Tarzana Swings - 2008
Congratulations are in order for the newly formed Tarzana Museum of History and Culture! The Museum's high energy motto, "Tarzana Swings" is now a reality on a terrific collection of sports and casual clothing. These terrific items can be ordered through the museum by calling the Tarzana Community Center.
Designs are by Louis Kaye, president of the museum.

EASTER TIME IN THE SAN FERNANDO VALLEY

Pioneer Church Painting in Office of Oakwood Memorial Cemetery in Chatsworth.
Protestant Easter services were celebrated at the beginning of the 20th century in Chatsworth's Pioneer Church. The structure was built in 1906 and moved to Oakwood Cemetery in 1965. The church is still in use by two small congregations.
This painting was done by Laura Kailagas. (The spelling here may be wrong)

GOOD FRIDAY COMMEMORATION IN THE SAN FERNANDO VALLEY

Beginning at noon today until three in the afternoon, many Christians in the San Fernando Valley will commemorate the crucifixion of Jesus. This image of the death of Jesus was taken in the early morning at San Fernando Mission Cemetery.

Thursday, March 20, 2008

METHODISTS CELEBRATE HOLY THURSDAY

Vintage postcard of the Methodist Episcopal Church in Glendale, California. Given to The Museum of the San Fernando Valley by Gary Fredburg 2007.

Rev. John Wesley, the founder of Christian Methodism, once said"
“Do all the good you can,
By all the means you can,
In all the ways you can,
In all the places you can,
At all the times you can,
To all the people you can,
As long as ever you can.”

Today, this is a great quotation to consider, as the United Methodist Church community in the San Fernando Valley celebrates Maudi Thursday, the commemoration of the Last Supper of Jesus.
Early Methodists in California called their denomination the Methodist Episcopal Church. (AME stands for African Methodist Episcopal). Those religious pioneers were prominent in civic affairs, government and education. Methodists in the San Fernando Valley were among those instrumental in the founding of the University of Southern California. Early Methodist preachers in Southern California often rode to hold services across vast distances. They got the nickname "circuit riders."
Methodists are famous for their pock-luck dinners. Thus the old joke. "Do you know how God knows when a Methodist arrives in Heaven? She or he is the one with the covered dish."

SAN FERNANDO VALLEY'S FIRST HOLY THURSDAY CELEBRATION

Spanish Franciscan missionary - San Fernando Mission Cemetery 2008 - Photo for the Archives of The Museum of the San Fernando Valley by Gerald Fecht
It is likely that the first celebration of the Christian commemoration of Holy Thursday in the San Fernando Valley took place in the Spring of 1798. Father Fermin Lasuen established the Mission San Fernando Rey de España in September of 1797, and the first Maudy Thursday would have been in the following year.
Holy Thursday marks the last Seder dinner of Jesus with his disciples. It is most famously depicted in the painting of the Last Supper by Leonardo da Vinci. An enormous painting of the Last Supper can be seen at Forest Lawn Cemetery in Glendale. When the first Passover was celebrated by Jews in the San Fernando Valley is not known. During the Spanish era celebrating Passover would have been a very dangerous thing.

A SPECIAL PHOTOGRAPH BY PHYLLIS HANSEN


Photo taken in Ireland by Phyllis Hansen in 1968 with an Instamatic Camera.

I promise to get off my Ireland kick, but it takes me a few days after Saint Patrick's Day to return to the world of regularly-sized human beings. When The Museum of the San Fernando Valley has a place of our own, we will have an annual photography exhibit for Valley and Los Angeles area artists. In the meanwhile isn't this photo by Phyllis Hansen a splendid thing?

Wednesday, March 19, 2008

PASSION WEDNESDAY IN THE SAN FERNANDO VALLEY

Easter Mosaic - San Fernando Mission Cemetery - San Fernando - 2008
Catholic, Anglican and Lutheran Churches in the San Fernando Valley are joined by mainstream Protestant denominations to celebrate the Wednesday of Passion Week. Saint Nicholas Episcopal Church in Encino has its statues covered with red cloth and palm fronds on its altars. Tomorrow, Holy Thursday will be a time to celebrate the Last Supper of Jesus and the installation of the Eucharistic meal of bread and wine. Many churches will follow the traditional practice of "washing of feet" on Thursday evening.
The Friday before Easter is called Good Friday. It commemorates the torments and crucifixion of Jesus of Nazareth. On Holy Saturday altars are stripped and late into the night, the ritual objects (holy water, holy oils, altar linens etc) are blessed for use throughout the year. At midnight, there will be Masses and services celebrating the resurrection of Jesus.

AIDS LIFE CYLCE TRAINING RIDE IN THE VALLEY

Universal Studios - historic postcard - collection of The Museum of the San Fernando Valley - gift of Gary Fredburg 2008

Soon you will likely see the first Big Valley Training Ride for women and men preparing for the 2008 California AIDS Life Cycle ride. The riders will be traveling from San Francisco to Los Angeles, with sponsors' donations going to fight AIDS and provide vital services in our State. The president of your Museum has volunteered as a "roadie" (support crew member) for the ride. My job will be to help out in the camp store.
Here's a list that I constructed for the Big Valley Training Riders to learn about our Valley on their training ride.
Jerry Fecht

Hi Riders!
Welcome to the Big Valley Ride!

On this very special ride you will be traveling through some of the most important historical areas of America. Here a few tips about what you will be seeing and riding through.

You will begin your ride in Hollywood and approaching the San Fernando Valley through the historic Cahuenga Pass.
• Cahuenga Pass was once a Spanish dirt highway called El Camino Real.
• On the way to Barham Blvd. you will following the route of the Butterfield Stage Coach.
• During the US Civil War, soldiers accompanied travels in this Pass.
• You'll see signs saying Lake Hollywood - It's a reservoir that supplies water for Hollywood.
• To your left is Universal Studios and City Walk. Near the top of the hill the Battle of Cahuenga between the US Army and the Army of California's Rancheros took place.
• At the bottom of Cahuenga Pass is Campo de Cahuenga where Col. John C. Fremont and General Andreas Pico signed the Treaty of Cahuenga making American a nation "from sea to shining sea."
• Griffith Park is named for Griffith Griffith who gave Los Angeles the largest urban park in the USA. Later he murdered his wife and went to prison.
• The Autry Center of Western History is a terrific museum. Come back and plan to spend the afternoon.
• A little red barn at the Live Steamers in Griffith Park is Walt Disney's barn, where he planned Disney land and played with his trains.
• Travel town is lots of fun to visit if you are into trains and trollies. It's more fun, if you bring a kid along with you to see it.
• Forest Lawn Hollywood Hills Cemetery has all sorts of celebrities buried there, including Bette Davis who arranged for a tomb that would always look down on her old boss Harry Warner (Warner Brothers).
• Riverside Drive crosses the L.A. River. It drains a huge ancient lake. The Valley has year-round creeks and streams. The River is going to be restored.
• An all-year ford allowed passage from the Valley to the Cahuenga pass. "nga" means village in the Tongva language. Here Cahue-nga.
• The greater San Fernando Valley has 1,800,000 residents. If it weren't part of Los Angeles, it would be the 5th largest city in America.
• Heading north across the Valley, you are retracing the route taken by Franciscan Catholic monks. The mission and Valley is named after San Fernando Rey de España, the husband of Isabella.
• At Rinaldi you will be crossing the great Northridge Earthquake Fault. Over a billion dollars damage in less than 10 seconds.
• Laurel Canyon between the Valley and West Hollywood was the source of the California laurel plant, used as a muscle relaxant, before cyclists.
• Sepulveda Boulevard is named for the Spanish rancher whose house is at Olvera Street by Union Station.
• The Valley once was the world's largest producer of olive oil, lots of the trees still grow in the area.
• In the hills you may see the great California aqueduct cascade. William Mulholland brought water to the Valley from the Owens River.
• In the Ice Age, all of the huge creatures caught in the LaBrea Tar Pits traveled the Valley, drank from the large Toluca Lake and interrupted traffic.
• The rocky hills in the west have Tongva and Chumash pictoglyphs, and there the rocket engines for America's moon landing were tested.
• The pine trees in the Valley were brought from Mexico by Spanish monks,
• Reseda was once the home of huge orange, walnut and avocado orchards. Turkey and chickens were raised on mom and pop farms.
• Victory Blvd. was once the site of huge anti-aircraft guns protecting Burbank's airport and air plane industry.
• Lost of airplanes in the mid Valley. Van Nuys Airport is the largest private commercial airport in the USA. Amelia Earhart flew here. Casablana was filmed here. "Play it again, _____!"
• The Valley has the largest Armenian population outside of Armenia.
• F. Scott Fitzgerald wrote in a guest house belonging to Edward Everett Horton near White Oak Avenue.
• Ventura Boulevard is our friend El Camino Real again.

Tuesday, March 18, 2008

HAPPY EASTER BIRTHDAY TO BETH PERRIN

Vintage Postcard of the San Fernando Valley - Gift of Fred Berk 2007 - Collection of The Museum of the San Fernando Valley
Phyllis Hansen shares this Holiday Message"
Happy Birthday to Beth, whose celebration falls on Easter for the first and last time.

Easter this year is March 23. Easter is the first Sunday after the
first full moon following the Spring Equinox, which is March 20. This
dating of Easter is based on the lunar calendar that the Hebrews used to
identify Passover which is why Easter moves around on our Roman calendar.
Based on the above, Easter can only be one day earlier, the 22nd (tho I'm not sure why it
can't be the 21st -- perhaps because that is the first full day following Spring Equinox?)

Anyway, the next time Easter will fall on March 23 will be in 2228. The last time it was
March 21 was 1913 -- so unless your 95 or older you weren't around for that one.

The next time Easter will be on March 22 will be in 2285. And the last time was in 1818.
Therefore, no one under the age of 94/95 was alive the last time Easter fell on March 23.

Beth Perrin is an advisor to The Museum of the San Fernando Valley, and a member of our Valley Visionaries Selection Committee

CONGRATULATIONS TO CAMPO DE CAHUENGA

Deuk Perrin - Campo de Cahuenga 2008 - Photo by Gerald Fecht for the Archives of The Museum of the San Fernando Valley

Congratulations to the Friends of Campo de Cahuenga Historical Memorial Society on the completion of their new website. Constructed under the direction of Phyllis Hansen, the website contains vital information about visiting the Campo (after its estimated reopening after rennovation in late Spring of this year), but stories about the historic-making people who are part of Campo's history, and great photographs.
http://www.campodecahuenga.com
Deuk Perrin, president of the Friends of the Campo, is shown here celebrating Saint Patrick's day, invites anyone interested in preserving the history of California to join the association. Information about Campo membership is available on the new Campo de Cahuenga website.

Monday, March 17, 2008

HAPPY SAINT PATRICK'S DAY

Watercolor by Orpha Klinker - Collection of Phyllis Hansen
Saint Patrick's Day is as good as any to make a confession, so I need to tell you that your Museum president is hopelessly superstitious. I try my best to put logic and science in the forefront of my life, then Saint Patrick's Day (or another event like it) arrives and I make sure to "wear the green", drink a little Jameson's whiskey out of a fruit jar, bring in the shamrocks from my garden, bake soda bread etc etc etc. Tonight, I'll slip off into the garden to see if there are little lights among the shrubs, just in case the Tuatha d' Danu might be down there cooking beer. No doubt, by now you understand why Museums need elections!
Be that as it may, while I was cleaning out old emails this morning, I discovered this photograph of a water color by the great California artist Orpha Klinker, sent to me by the great California human being Phyllis Hansen.
And, because it's Saint Patrick's Day, I take it as an omen of all of the good things that are to come our way.
Happy Saint Patrick's Day, and don't forget to buy wild bird seed for March 19th - Saint Joseph's Day.
Much affection Jerry Fecht

Sunday, March 16, 2008

HOLY WEEK IN THE SAN FERNANDO VALLEY

Isabel Piczek is an important Los Angeles artist. Many of her works are in public places, such as this exceptionally beautiful mosaic at the Catholic Cemetery in the Mission San Fernando. The work was done in 1961
Photo by Gerald Fecht for The Museum of the San Fernando Valley.

Saturday, March 15, 2008

SAVE MARCH 26th FOR MUSEUM BOARD MEETING

Entrance to the new wing at LACMA - photo taken at midnight by Museum Advisor Phyllis Hansen 2008
Don't forget, with all of March's madness, to mark your calendar for the monthly meeting of the Board of Directors and Advisors of The Museum of the San Fernando Valley - Wednesday MARCH 26th.
More to come on the meeting - but I just had to share Phyllis' photograph with you. You know that this corridor of street lights will very soon become everyone's have-to-have picture of Los Angeles.

ZOCALO LECTURE - FREE - SENATOR CHUCK HAGEL

Our New Home in Panorama City - Postcard in the collection of The Museum of the San Fernando Valley - Gift of Gary Fredburg 2007 - Note B.R. (bedroom), LR (living room) and K (kitchen) written on the card in pencil. Tract Housing in Panorama City c. late 1950s.

Thursday, April 10, 7:30 pm at ArcLight Sherman Oaks
Senator Chuck Hagel, “America: Our Next Chapter”

The Republican senator from Nebraska visits Zócalo to deliver an examination of the current state of our nation as well as offer proposals he says can guide America back onto the right path. Long admired by his colleagues on both sides of the aisle for his honesty, integrity, and common sense (Time Magazine called him a "hero to liberals"), Hagel asks tough questions about the nation's most pressing problems. Drawing on personal insights from his years as a political insider, Hagel tackles both foreign and domestic issues—including a candid examination of the Iraq War and the political deadlock that he says is threatening America's position in the world. He concludes that the partisan stranglehold might only be solved by the emergence of a "new party or independent movement."

Contact your Museum for information re: free tickets.
gfecht@sbcglobal.net

Sunday, March 9, 2008

1946 20th CENTURY FOX FILM CORPORATION

Gift to The Museum of the San Fernando Valley from James Fecht 2007
An Employee's Receipt issued by the 20th Century Fox Film Corporation issued to James L. Fecht on the 14th of December 1946. The check was for $5.67 with ¢.70 withheld for social security and ¢ .70 withheld for California State unemployment insurance.
The document is noted as "retroactive 1946". Jobs in the film industry were hard to get in after World War II, but veterans were given priority where possible.
In pencil the address of Glen Barnes, Jimmie's father-in-law, and where Jim and his new wife Joye were living. 4548 Elmer Avenue, in North Hollywood, California. The house and whole neighborhood was demolished to make way for the Ventura Freeway (California 101).

WATER HISTORY IS SAN FERNANDO VALLEY HISTORY

Headwaters of the Owens River - Postcard in the collection of The Museum of the San Fernando Valley - Gift of Gary Fredburg 2007
The Museum of the San Fernando Valley collects water history of all historic eras.

Thursday, March 6, 2008

JESSE BENTON FREMONT - CALIFORNIA'S FIRST LADY

Photo by Phyllis Hansen - Archive of The Museum of the San Fernando Valley

In the late 1800s, the City of Los Angeles sought to discourage new cemeteries or mortuaries within its limits. Rosedale Cemetery was thus located just over the line at 1831 West Washington Boulevard. Today it is part of the city with the zip code of 90007-1151.
Rosedale Cemetery was founded in 1884. It was designed to be an urban park and was open to the burials of people of all races and religions.
Many important figures in the development of the San Fernando Valley and our State are buried at Rosedale, among whom is Jesse Benton Fremont, wife of the great western explorer John C. Fremont, and daughter of U.S. Senator Thomas Hart Benton. Important artifacts from the lives of Jesse and John C. Fremont are housed in California's most important historical site, Campo de Cahuenga in North Hollywood.
In March of 2008, Phyllis Hansen, advisor to The Museum of the San Fernando Valley located Mrs. Fremont's grave in Rosedale Cemetery. She provided this photograph for The Museum's electronic archives and made this comment: " I believe her (Jesse's) ashes were put here. Grave is surrounded by weeds, butted up against
a mausoleum. Do you think this is a turn of century marker, or was added later? Jessie and Mrs. Forbes are within spitting distance of each other.
This does not seem much of a tribute to a First Lady of California or daughter of a famous Senator, much less an important personage in her own right."

Wednesday, March 5, 2008

RICHARD BOGY SPEAKS OUT ABOUT THE WEDDINGTON HOUSE

Ventura Boulevard 1957 - Postcard in the collection of The Museum of the San Fernando Valley - Gift of Gary Fredburg - 2008
"Studio City, California. This famous boulevard joins the San Fernando Valley with the blue Pacific - Highway 101.

RICHARD BOGY'S STATEMENT

More than a year ago we learned that the Weddington House – the “mother house” of North Hollywood - was scheduled for demolition. The community immediately responded and asked to have the house declared a historic landmark. The significance of the Weddington family to North Hollywood can not be overstated.

Since the house received landmark status we have worked to find an appropriate site for it. As we progressed a broader vision for the future of the house became obvious, to create a regional museum for North Hollywood and to make the Weddington home the site of that museum. The Weddington family pledged their historic artifacts and $100,000 to this cause. Informal discussions ensured with the Museum of the San Fernando Valley to operate a museum. This past December our efforts were blind-sided by news that an organization in Lincoln Heights - known as “Heritage Square” – was trying to take the Weddington home and have it moved to their property.

As people throughout this community heard of plans to move the house across the City, disbelief and anger seemed the most common responses. Few could understand why the City would allow a historic home to be carted away, or why a group with no ties to either the home or North Hollywood would try to take an artifact away from a community that is fighting so hard to preserve it. Neighborhood Councils, business and homeowner groups, Chambers of Commerce and more spoke out loudly against moving the Weddington home away from North Hollywood , but as the community rallied to keep the home, Heritage Square stepped up their efforts to have it moved to their site. At a recent Cultural Heritage Commission hearing Heritage Square made an extended presentation of why they should receive the Weddington house, but when preservationists in support of keeping the home in North Hollywood rose to speak they were asked to constrain their comments in the interest of time.

The last and best hope for North Hollywood to save the Weddington house is Councilman Tom LaBonge, who is working to find a way to keep the home where it belongs.

On March 2nd historical societies from across Los Angeles gathered at Heritage Square to network and share artifacts, but North Hollywood could not be represented there, because as we struggle to preserve our history we find ourselves in a fight to keep it. Heritage Square should immediately stop their efforts to take an important artifact – the Weddington house - from the community where it belongs.

Richard Bogy
Toluca Lake CA

Tuesday, March 4, 2008

ROBERT TAYLOR VALLEY FILM STAR

Robert Taylor's Home in Northridge - Postcard given to The Museum of the San Fernando Valley by Gary Fredburg 2008

Robert Taylor moved to Los Angeles to continue his acting studies under Professor E. Gray who had taken a position at Pomona College. He was discovered at the college by a talent scout for MGM's film Journey's End. He became a big star in 1934 in Handy Andy with Will Rogers.
Taylor and his first wife Barbara Stanwyck married in 1939 and lived in the San Fernando Valley. He died on June 8, 1969 and is buried in Forest Lawn Memorial Park in Glendale, California. Ronald Reagan, Governor of California gave the eulogy.

Monday, March 3, 2008

DAILY NEWS CITES RICHARD HILTON, TOM LABONGE AND GUY WEDDINGTON McCREARY

These are excerpts fro an article published in the March 3, 2008 edition of the Los Angeles Daily News, entitled: Valley Losing its History as Development Spreads "Activists working to save significant landmarks".

"Some say the uncertain fate of the Weddington house is symbolic of what has happened in the Valley for decades as a string of historic sites have been lost or are threatened amid the growing pressures of urbanization.
"In an attempt to revitalize an area, the history and quality of life suffer from overdevelopment," said Richard Hilton, a Valley historian.
Hilton cites the Josef von Sternberg House in Northridge. Designed in 1935, it was regarded as one of the finest pieces of work from modernist architect Richard Neutra. But it was torn down in 1972. There was also the Valley Music Theater, the area's first performing arts center, which hosted Bob Hope, Jim Morrison and other celebrities. It was demolished to make room for condominiums in 2004.
And then there was one of the original homes sold by William Paul Whitsett when the Valley pioneer laid out the blueprint for suburbanization of the region in 1923. A developer razed that home last year just days before it could be designated a historic landmark.
Grass-roots efforts, however, have been successful in preserving some sites over the years. In Van Nuys, community members helped save City Hall, Baird House and Woman's Center with historic designations.
But it remains an uphill battle.
For now, the Weddington house has become a rallying cry for preservationists.
"… at a recent Cultural Heritage Commission meeting, Valley history buffs said that plan simply won't do.
"This house should stay in North Hollywood. It's here where it has historical and political meaning," said Guy Weddington McCreary, an active Valley historian and a descendant of the original family.
City Councilman Tom LaBonge, whose district includes the site of the house, said he is making it a priority to preserve the Valley's iconic structures even though money and land remain a challenge.
Among his ideas is widening Chandler Boulevard to create an outdoor architectural museum - similar to Heritage Square - for the Valley's historic homes.
And while preservationists also worry about the fate of the Lankershim Train Depot and historic dining car Phil's Diner - designated cultural monuments that have seen little attention - LaBonge said their restoration should start soon, particularly if more community members get involved.
"It's more than just a government designation that makes a historic neighborhood successful," LaBonge said. "It's the devotion and love of the people in the area."
In the Valley, Hilton said, renewed emphasis on preservation appears to be brewing as more historical groups spring up.
And the battle now is ensuring structures are not only saved but also restored and turned into community venues.
"We are always grateful to save a structure, but we also want the public to have access to it so history can be interpreted and it can become a visceral experience," he said. "Otherwise, it's just a shell.
"If you have to fight over preserving the Lankershim depot because a developer is given the opportunity to construct higher and denser, the priority's clearly not set right."

Sunday, March 2, 2008

CONGRATULATIONS TO PHYLLIS HANSEN - WINNER OF DAUGHTERS OF THE AMERICAN REVOLUTION ESSAY CONTEST

Phyllis Hansen - Archive The Museum of the San Fernando Valley 2008
The Hollywood Chapter of the Daughters of the American Revolution has just received notice that Phyllis Hansen is the winner of the Women's Issues Essay contest for the State of California. Hansen's essay was entitled "Marketing Without A Shopping Cart In Sight". According to Ms. Wanda Prosser, DAR's State Chairperson for Women's Issues, a Certificate of Award will be displayed at upcoming State conference.
Phyllis Hansen is a Director of the Friends of Campo de Cahuenga Historical Memorial Association, and content director of Association's exciting new website. Phyllis is an advisor to The Museum of the San Fernando Valley.