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Tuesday, August 30, 2011

GROUND BREAKING COMEDIAN RICHARD PRYLOR LIVED AND DIED IN THE SAN FERNANDO VALLEY

  DISCOVERING OUR VALLEY   2011                  
Northridge is 100 years old.

1989  Richard Pryor - World famous comedian in his role as the blind man Walluy Karew in the Tri Star film, "See No Evil, Hear No Evil"  Gift to The Museum of the San Fernando Valley from Barbara Silva 2011.  (click on image to enlarge).

Modern comedians often cite Richard Pryor as a major influence in their careers. Unfortunately, he is remembered by many San Fernando Valley residents for an incident in which, while drinking high alcohol rum and possibly free-basing cocaine, he set himself on fire and ran through his Northridge neighborhood ablaze. Pryor was able to salvage his career and retain his popularity. He died in Encino in 2005.




Monday, August 29, 2011

EAST VAN NUYS ALL STARS TO WORLD SERIES IN 1960

DISCOVERING OUR VALLEY   2011
Van Nuys is 100 this year

Jim Bateman, a high school teacher and coach for 28 years, shares this treasure of San Fernando Valley history with us. Jim lives in Chico, California.  World Series in Provo, Utah - July 1960  (click on image to enlarge it.)

Valley Green Sheet:  "Mass Windup - six pitches for East Van Nuys All Stars warm up for action in 'world series'.  From left are Jason Saleeby, Richard Stevens, Dick Parcells, George Voita, Dan Walker and Jack Hanover."
"East Van Nuys Team Participates in 'Series'."
Van Nuys - The East Van Nuys All-Stars are in Provo, Utah, representing the Valley region of the Western Boys Baseball Association, "world series" which opened Wednesday and concludes Saturday.
The East Valley Van Nuys squad, made up of boys 9 through 12 years of age, have defeated the Woodland Hills Twilight, Woodland Hills Sunset and Northridge All Stars to become regional champions and  (clipping damaged here.)
... homered. Manager Victor Saleeby said the team's strong points are pitching depth and balance, thje club has six hurlers, he said."
"Saleeby pitcher, Stevens catcher, Paul Fairbanks first base. Lang second base, Parcells third base, Dan Walker short stop, Jeff Polan left field, Bill Hall center field and Jim Bateman right field."

Jim wrote: "As you can imagine, it was a big deal for all of the kids and their families. I still remember the address of the family I lived with in Provo - 248 East, 840 North ...  We lost our 1st game to a team from Utah. Their pitcher hit two home runs, one a grand slam. He pitched a one-hitter.

Thursday, August 25, 2011

UNITED STATES PACIFIC RAILROAD PRINT OF THE SAN FERNANDO VALLEY - 1850s

DISCOVERING OUR VALLEY    - 2011

Though heavily water damaged, this hand-tinted print, entitled Mission And Plain Of San Fernando is an important addition to the Archives of The Museum of the San Fernando Valley.  Part of a survey conducted by the United States Pacific Railroad, the print is one of the earliest images of the San Fernando Valley.  It is a gift to The Museum Community from Gary Fredburg 2011.


What appear to be great rain clouds at the right side of the print are stains from water damage.  Look at the native American picking cactus pairs at the right. Between the viewer and the Mission buildings there is a man on horse back, work looking at closer. 

BECOME INVOLVED WITH YOUR SAN FERNANDO VALLEY HERITAGE TODAY.



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gerald.fecht@themuseumsfv.org 

HANNA BARBERA - KINGS OF TELEVISION ANIMATION

DISCOVERING OUR VALLEY    2011

Animation has long played a major role in San Fernando Valley culture and economy. Among the great stories of television animation was the partnership of William Hanna and Joseph Barbera.  The two historic animators formed Hanna Barbera in 1957 and sold the company a decade later. From their headquarters in Studio City, Hanna Barbera changed American entertainment history.

Promotional photograph of William Hanna (seated) and Joseph Barbera released for the "Jetsons: The Movie" in 1990. Gift to The Museum of the San Fernando Valley from Barbara Silva 2011 - (click on image to enlarge)


Wednesday, August 24, 2011

SHERMAN OAKS ESTATES

DISCOVERING OUR VALLEY    2011

Sherman Oaks Estates sales brochure - Gift to The Museum of the San Fernando Valley from Gary Fredburg 2011 - date of brochure unknown.  (click on image to enlarge)

ACTOR JOHN RITTER - LIFELONG VALLEY RESIDENT

DISCOVERING OUR VALLEY    2011

John Ritter - promotional photograph for the film "Skin Deep" - Gift to The Museum of the San Fernando Valley from Barbara Silva 2011 - (click on image to enlarge)

John Ritter was one of America's most beloved television actors. He is best known for his role as Jack Tripper in the comedy series "Three's Company".  John, the son of the cowboy actor Tex Ritter and Dorothy Fay, was born on the 17th of September 1948 in Burbank. He died in Burbank on the 11th of September 2003. His is buried in Forest Lawn in the Hollywood Hills, overlooking Burbank, California.

Monday, August 22, 2011

GIFT OF THE SKIRBALL CENTER

DISCOVERING OUR VALLEY    2011


I suppose being at the top of the Sepulveda Pass on the 405, may not in some people's opinion, qualify as part of the San Fernando Valley. But, anything as pretty as the Skirball's lotus pond is worth claiming as a Valley treasure. (click on this image to enlarge)  Photo for the archives of The Museum of the San Fernando Valley by Gerald Fecht - August 2011.

VAN NUYS CELEBRATES BEING 100

DISCOVERING OUR VALLEY   2011

Friday, August 19th was a time of celebration for the Van Nuys community, as it marked the city's 100th Anniversary on the grounds of Saint Elizabeth's Catholic School.

 Richard Hiton, Museum Board Member, shows visitors to the Centennial event, about The Museum's historic walking tours of Van Nuys and North Hollywood,

Community leaders display bronze marking plaques related to their locations. (click on this image to enlarge)
 Members of women's singing association enjoy themselves at the Van Nuys Centennial.

Sea cadets lent a proud moment during the Van Nuys celebration.

Sunday, August 21, 2011

ACTOR ALAN LADD in 1944

DISCOVERING OUR VALLEY  2011

Alan Ladd - Photograph 1944 - Gift to the Museum from Gary Fredburg 2011. (click on image to enlarge) Library of San Fernando Valley Entertainment Industry History.

This wrinkled, but otherwise good image of the North Hollywood actor, Alan Ladd was a gift to The Museum of the San Fernando Valley from Gary Fredburg at the Centennial of Van Nuys festival this last Friday. This publicity photograph was taken for Paramount Pictures in 1944. Awaiting archival preparation, the picture was not subjected to pressure, resulting in the light colors across the image.

TRI CHI FRATERNITY RESTORED AT PIERCE COLLEG Dec. 1970

DISCOVERING OUR VALLEY   2011



The following were listed in a ruined photo album of Tri Chi Fraternity of Los Angeles Pierce College – December 1970:

Restoration of the Fraternity
Restoration Class:

Marc Bassi
Terry Beaver
Eugene Calk
Demetri Corley
Bob Crowley
Dave Degener
Jim Herrmann
Joel Hudson
Jim Larrson
Lee Lazak
Mike Matteson
John Prince
Tom Royster
Kim Schulte
Bob Scott
Don Scott
Dick Sippel

Alumni Advisors

Paul Estavillo
Herb Friedman
Steve Hennes

Friday, August 19, 2011

ARE YOU BEAUTIFUL? December 1956 in the SAN FERNANDO VALLEY

DISCOVERING OUR VALLEY   2011

We can learn so much from small items once common in the past. Here is a free "Weekly TV Log", the type of giveaway common for years in San Fernando Valley markets and drug stores. Thanks to Gary Fredburg, who donated this little gem, we have insights into the standards of the 1950s, a peek at the rising career of Valley film and television star Ronald Reagan, and even what ordinary television viewers who shopped at the King Cole Market in Burbank might have been watching in their homes.

 (click on the images to enlarge them.)



Thursday, August 18, 2011

VAN NUYS CELEBRATES ITS CENTENNIAL YEAR

DISCOVERING OUR VALLEY  2011



Aside from the languages in announcements, and the models of cars, the Central Christian Church in Van Nuys doesn't look all that different than it did in the historic postcard at the top. The church is located at the northwest corner of Haynes and Vesper Streets in Van Nuys. The Postcard is a gift to The Museum from Gary Fredburg and the photo below was taken for the archives of The Museum by Gerald Fecht in 2011.

COME BY SAINT ELIZABETH'S SCHOOL TOMORROW, FRIDAY AUGUST 19th FOR THE BIG VAN NUYS CENTENNIAL CELEBRATION!
Your Museum is honored to be part of the festivities.


EDWARD JAMES OLMOS SAN FERNANDO VALLEY ACTOR

DISCOVERING OUR VALLEY    2011


Here, in his film "American Me", demonstrates the theatrical presence that has made this Encino resident so important in the cinema world.

SENATOR FRAN PAVLEY ON SAVING LOS ENCINOS HISTORIC SITE

DISCOVERING OUR VALLEY    2011

This is an excerpt from a recent newsletter from the office of State Senator Fran Pavley.

Encino Chamber and Neighborhood Council Meetings
I recently had the opportunity to speak at the monthly meetings of the Encino Chamber of Commerce and the Encino Neighborhood Council. Separately, I updated both groups about the state budget and about pension reform measures that have been enacted. We discussed how these issues impact residents and businesses in the San Fernando Valley. Additionally, members of both the Chamber and the Neighborhood Council shared my concerns about the proposed closure of Los Encinos State Historic Park. The park is one of 70 state parks slated for closure by July of 2012 due to budget cuts. Los Encinos is surrounded by businesses and residences, and its closure would be a real loss to the community. The Encino Neighborhood Council is exploring options to keep the park running in some capacity. Members have contacted the State Parks Foundation for help. The foundation is working with non-profits throughout the state that are trying to keep parks open to the public. The Department of Parks and Recreation estimates that it costs the state about $210,000 a year to operate Los Encinos.

Museum Community note: Keeping Los Encinos State Historic Monument accessible is a high priority for all of us who care about history and our San Fernando Valley heritage. 

Monday, August 15, 2011

EARLY CRESPI PHOTOGRAPHS

DISCOVERING OUR VALLEY  2011

Among the gifts to The Museum of the San Fernando Valley from the estate of Catherine Olson are these great photographs of early Catholic community in Encino. (click on images to enlarge)

From 1947 to 1951, the members of Carmelite Order used this building. sometimes referred to as the Gray House, as their monastic residence.


Once serving as a Carmelite Monastery, this building was later used as a convent for Catholic nuns and today serves Our Lady of Grace Church in Encino as the parish offices. It served as a monastery from 1947 to 1951.

 The Roman Catholic Carmelite Monastery in Encino, California.  The monastery was dedicated on the 27th of August 1951.

 Three Carmelite priests at the entrance of their future monastery taken early in 1951. The priests, (left to right) are Father Enda, Father Patrick and Father Ignatius. Over their traditional Catholic cassocks, they wear a brown serape-like garment called a scapular. This marks their Order's origin around the year 1150 AD on Mount Carmel in the modern state of Israel. The official title of their religious community is The Order of the Brothers of Our Lady of Mount Carmel.
In 1959 these Catholic priests opened Crespi Carmelite High School, which their Order still operates today. It is named for the Franciscan priest, Father Jaun Crespi, who accompanied the Spanish explorer Gaspar de Portola in his first expedition to the San Fernando Valley in 1769.

Saturday, August 13, 2011

COMMENT ON BIRMINGHAM HOSPITAL AND THE ENTERTAINMENT MEDIA.

John Hendry, member of the Van Nuys Neighborhood Council writes:

"In regards to Birmingham Hospital, did you mention the l949 movie "The Men", starring Marlon Brando. It's Brando's first "leading role", a Stanley Kramer directed film shot at Birmingham, about WW 2 disabled veterans. 
The movie brought me back--as a 5 year old I remember my father's Air Force Reserve unit was stationed at Birmingham, and I walked through some of the dayrooms, not realizing
just what they had been.-

Even more odd--there's a WW 2 broadcast of "Edgar Bergen and Charlie Mc Carthy", preserved somewhere that was recorded at Van Nuys High, for the Birmingham patients.  I heard it--surprisingly I couldn't find it--though you can access many "Edgar Bergen" broadcasts on the Internet."

Friday, August 12, 2011

LAST OF THE GREAT BIRMINGHAM HOSPITAL PHTOGRAPHS

DISCOVERING OUR VALLEY   2011

Unfortunately, many of the people who would remember these celebrities, are not computer literate. So, if you have an elderly friend about, why not show them this series of photographs from Birmingham Hospital. 

Excerpts from the Birmingham Reporter - May 1944 - Gift to the Museum of the San Fernando Valley from Myron Ross 2010  - (click on images to enlarge)

Recognize the young soldier above right?  In less than a decade after this publicity photo was taken at Birmingham Hospital, this San Fernando Valley-based performer would become one of the most popular celebrities in the world.
"Fondly know as the 'Pearly Gate Quartet', Sgt Cully Richards, Cpl. Lilio Chiodi, Lt. Harold Boswick, and S/Sgt Desi Arnez make with the rhythm on 'Birmingham Showtime'."


Two of the biggest celebrities of this era stand by this soldier in Birmingham Hospital in 1944. They are Basil Rathbone (who played both the good and bad guy in many films, including the role of Sherlock Holmes) and Mary Pickford. Mary had world wide recognition for her silent and talking picture roles. 

"Sgt. James G. Saines, one of BGH's first patients, enjoys a visit with screen starts Basil Rathbone and Mary Pickford."

Here's a trio who stumped me, I'd never heard of them before I discovered this photograph in Myron Ross's donation to The Museum.Originally called the Bagelman Sisters, the three young women gained recognition as the Barry Sisters. They fused Yiddish sounds and energy into jazz during the 1940s and 50s.

"Clarence Nash, the voice of famed Donald Duck, greets Pfc.Frank Martinez, BGH patient. Mr. Nash participated in the fine Walt Disney show put on here at the Rec. Hall on 18 April 1944.

LINDA DARNELL AND AL PEARCE AT BIRGMINGHAM HOSPITAL 1944

DISCOVERING OUR VALLEY   2011

Excerpt from Birmingham Reporter May 1944 - gift to The Museum of the San Fernando Valley from Myron Ross 2011 - (click on image to enlarge)

In the 1940s, radio was the chief way Americans got their news and daily entertainment.  Al Pearce (at the left) was widely known by his character-name "Elmer Blurt".  Linda Darnell had just burst into stardom in her 1940s role in Song of the Islands. The film was shown often aboard US Navy ships and on military bases in the South Pacific. She was part of many a young serviceman's fantasies of what their battle torn islands could someday be like. With Pearce and Darnell was Harold Bostwick who went on to work in Broadway productions in New York.

"Al "Elmer Blurt: Pearce, Linda Darnell and Lt. Harold Bostwick, theatre officer, cook up a few quips for the usual Wednesday night fun-fest."

GREETINGS FROM STUDIO CITY

DISCOVERING OUR VALLEY    2011


Greetings From Studio City - vintage postcard gift from Gary Fredburg to The Museum of the San Fernando Valley 2011.  (click on image to enlarge)

"In the San Fernando Valley just north of Hollywood, this view shows the Universal City complex in the foreground and the very beautiful Sheridan Universal hotel."

Thursday, August 11, 2011

PUBLICITY PHOTOS AT BIRMINGHAM HOSPITAL 1944

DISCOVERING OUR VALLEY   2011

Motion picture celebrities were considered of great value in the "war effort" propaganda of 1944.  The morale of the civilian population, as well as the military, was a high priority in the administration of Franklin Roosevelt.  Birmingham Hospital (originally called Van Nuys Hospital) and its nearness to the motion picture studios throughout the San Fernando Valley was an ideal photo location.

Excerpt from the Birmingham Reporter May 1944 - Gift to The Museum of the San Fernando Valley from Myron Ross 2011 (click on images to enlarge)

 "Movie mother" Fay Holden cheers Pfc. Robert D'Angelillo, recently speeded to recovery by miracle drug penicillin, on one the VACS' usual Tuesday visits."
Note that Private First Class D'Angelillo was provided by the hospital with non-filtered cigarettes, a practice that continued well into the 1970s.

 "Just back from a South Pacific tour, screen star Phyllis Brooks talks, "eye to eye" with South Pacific casualties Sgt. Kenneth F. Reimer and Pfc. Robert Cassidy, both BGH patients."


 "Screen lovely Merle Oberon thrills T/5 Vernon Tilford BGH battle casualty, and army nurse Lt. Thelma Blumentahl. Says Miss Oberon, 'The boys look fine; I think this San Fernando (Valley) climate agrees with them."

Celebrities, and the general public, were not exposed to the critically wounded or massively disfigured soldiers.


"Rudy Vallee, of stage, screen and radio fame, smiles a welcome to Birminghamites who packed the Recreation Hall to hear his fine variety show."



CELEBRITY INSIGHTS ABOUT BIRMINGHAM HOSPITAL IN 1944

DISCOVERING OUR VALLEY  2011

Among the items donated this week to The Museum of the San Fernando Valley by Myron Ross of Heroes and Legends, was a 10 May 1944 hospital newspaper called the Birmingham Reporter. Here are three great pictures:

 
Clipping from Birmingham Hospital Reporter  May 1944 - Gift to The Museum of the San Fernando Valley from Myron Ross 2011 - (click on image to enlarge)
"Captain Ronald Reagan, Sergeant Cully Richards, and singing star Ann Jeffires, smile over their script in 'Birmingham Showtime' series, which is presented at 6:30 p.m. every Saturday over KFWB."


Detail from Birmingham Hospital Reporter  May 1944 - Jimmy Stewart -  Gift to The Museum of the San Fernando Valley from Myron Ross 2011 - (click on image to enlarge)

"Congratulations - Lt. Leon Schwartz, 1st Lt, D.C. upon the award of the Air Medal to your (note - may have mean 'his') brother, Lt. Col, Paul Schwartz, shown congratulating Major Jimmy Stewart, who also received the Air Medal.  -  Lt. Col. Schwartz is deputy commander of a heavy bombardment group of the 8th Air Force, operating from Great Britain. He entered the Army as a cadet at Randolph Field in 1938, and previous to his present assignment, was CO of the B-24 Group at Pocatello Air Base, Idaho.
We are proud to have the brother of such a man to take care of some of our dental problems here at Birmingham."

The Charioteers - Detail from Birmingham Hospital Reporter  May 1944 - Gift to The Museum of the San Fernando Valley from Myron Ross 2011 - (click on image to enlarge)

Note: It was customary in the American press during the World War II era to identify people by their race.
"Fresh from a jivy rendition of "Ride, Red, Ride", stand the famed Charioteers. The five Negroes were stellar participant in "Birmingham Showtime", BGH's own radio program."

RARE IMAGES OF BIRMINGHAM HOSPITAL May 1944

DISCOVERING OUR VALLEY   2011

Encino Businessman, Myron Ross continually surprises The Museum Community by his unique and important additions to our collections. Mr Ross, who is the owner of Heroes and Legends a company specializing in autographed celebrity memorabilia, adds these splendid examples of Valley history during World War II to The Museum's Library of San Fernando Valley Entertainment Industry History. 

View of Birmingham Hospital from car window, 1944 - Gift to The Museum of the San Fernando Valley from Myron Ross 2011  (click on image to enlarge)

This important photograph of Birmingham Hospital in 1944 may well have been illicit. At the time, the hospital was preparing for a massive influx of wounded American service personnel from the invasion of the Japanese homeland. Some projections estimated that the invasion might produce as many as a million American casualties. It had room for 1777 beds.
The hospital also housed prisoner-patients, who were combat enemies of the United States. Photographing military installations in 1944 would have been considered a serious offense.

PHOTOS OF GRANADA HILLS COMMUNITY HOSPITAL WANTED.

Pat Walsh writes:
"There is a facebook page for Granada Hills Community Hospital. If anyone has any memorabilia from there, please post a picture of it on the wall. Thanks."

Wednesday, August 10, 2011

PERUVIAN FOOD IN VAN NUYS

DISCOVERING OUR VALLEY   -  2011

What a nice place to talk San Fernando Valley history - Puro Sabor at 6366 Van Nuys Boulevard. I had a great "pechuga de pollo a la Parrilla" grilled chicken breast, fries, good rice and a lunch-sized salad - just $ 10.95.  Our host introduced himself as Olivier.

Our host at Puro Sabor, Olivier.

GLENDALE IN THE 1960S

DISCOVERING OUR VALLEY   2011

Glendale California - vintage postcard - gift to The Museum of the San Fernando Valley from Gary Fredburg 2011.  (click on the image to enlarge)

I'll bet there is a car buff out there who will be able to pin down the era of this postcard.

Tuesday, August 9, 2011

HISTORIC WALKING TOUR OF VAN NUYS - August 13th

DISCOVERING OUR VALLEY   2011 
"One Step At A Time"
August 13th Walking Tour of Van Nuys
(click on this flyer to enlarge it)

Wednesday, August 3, 2011

ALAN LADD FOR PRESIDENT

DISCOVERING OUR VALLEY  2011

Just to make sure that no one gets the mistaken impression that your non-profit Museum is engaging in politics, this snapshot is part of The Museum's historic collection. 
 
Are these girls part of a film studio's promotion of a film featuring Valley actor, Alan Ladd?  Or, maybe they are students at North Hollywood High School, when Alan Ladd was a student leader there? We will keep on seeking an answer to this mystery. Thanks to Gary Fredburg for this unique gift. (click on this image to enlarge it)

PHIL CARTER BRINGS AMERICAN HISTORY TO HIS BUSINESS LOCATIONS

DISCOVERING OUR VALLEY   2011

Seldom missing a chance to support positive measures to better the San Fernando Valley, Phil Carter participated in National Night Out this Tuesday evening in North Hollywood. Phil, the ownere of Red Barn Feed and Saddlery in three Valley locations, displays state, city and historic American flags in his stores, along with important US newspapers. Phil was interviewed in The Museum's "Narrating Lives - Oral Histories of the San Fernando Valley by Museum Board leader Willard Simms.
Phil Carter, San Fernando Valley, business leader and supporter of historical collections.

MUSEUM PARTICIPATES IN NATIONAL NIGHT OUT IN NORTH HOLLYWOOD

DISCOVERING OUR VALLEY  2011

      Richard Hilton, Gary Fredburg, Wendy Fredburg (Gary’s wife) and Jerry Fecht worked a booth for The Museum of the San Fernando Valley and Campos de Cahuenga at the North Hollywood Park for the 28th National Night Out.
    Citizens, law enforcement officers, area businesses, neighborhood associations, and political leaders participated in the event. 

Jerry Fecht - left (The Museum's president), Los Angeles City Councilman Paul Krekorian, and Richard Hilton (Director of The Museum's Tours and Adventures program) at National Night Out in North Hollywood Park.
The world famous Bird Lady of North Hollywood visits with The Museum's Richard Hilton on National Night Out. Richard enjoys a sno-cone, one of many treats given free to event visitors. If Richard offered one of the cockateels a bit of sno-cone isn't known
Museum Board leaders, Gary Fredburg (seated) and Richard Hilton sign up National Night Out visitors for The Museum's tours and special lectures program. They handed out Museum and Campo de Cahuenga brochures and children's coloring maps of the San Fernando Valley.

Tuesday, August 2, 2011

OUR LADY OF GRACE - ENCINO DEDICATION CEREMONY 1947

DISCOVERING OUR VALLEY   2011

The first Mass celebrated by Our Lady of Grace parish in Encino was held in the packing room of Canoga Farms on Ventura Boulevard. It was conducted by a discalced Carmelite priest Father Patrick Collins.  This ceremony dedicating the American flag was probably held in September of 1947 with the opening of the Carmelite Catholic school there.


Just across Ventura Boulevard from the Encino Development Company, dedication ceremony of Our Lady of Grace Catholic parish at the south western corner of White Oak Avenue and Ventura Boulevard c. 1947.  Bequest to The Museum from the estate of Catherine Olson, who was a parishioner there.  (click on image to enlarge)