Tel: (818) 347-9665 PST

Wednesday, August 22, 2018

8/26/18 2:00 pm Historic Walking Tour of Van Nuys - please join us

Join us for a stroll back in time through the "Town That Was Started Right!"

Learn about the origin of the Daily News and the company which was a nationwide maker of silent movie theatre organs. Who were Hobart Johnstone Whitley, Wayne E. Bechtelheimer and Whitley Van Nuys Huffaker? Relive "Wednesday Nights on Van Nuys Boulevard." We will have historic photographs and stories to share as we wander this surprisingly historic San Fernando Valley treasure. 

Tour highlights include:
  • Van Nuys Bungalow            
  • Women’s Club
  • Old Van Nuys Library (1927)       
  • United Methodist Church
  • Municipal Building Fa├žade       
  • Van Nuys Post Office
  • Abeles Map               
  • Fernando Statue, Crystal Plunge
  • Bob’s Big Boy, Busch Gardens        
  • Lankershim, Van Nuys, Whitsett, Whitley

The development entity known as The Syndicate began the process in 1910, but William Paul Whitsett saw it through to the end. Originally a barley field, Van Nuys became a prosperous center of City Government, agriculture and industry. Come explore what remains to be appreciated: original 1911 buildings hidden beneath modern facades, first churches, a civic center with many special revelations, one of the main hubs of social and official activity, the Women's Club building, Los Angeles Historic Cultural Monuments #201, #202, and #911, and National Register of Historic Places Monument #2509. 

RSVP:     1-818-347-9665, email at
Please RSVP and pay in advance with:  EVENTBRITE - Search under: Van Nuys Historic Walking Tour  (Okay to walk-up and pay)

Cost:        $10 per person donation; Also, please visit
Parking:    Street & metered parking in area

Attendees will meet under the "Bridge/Archway" of the Braude Constituent Center,     

6262 Van Nuys Blvd. on the SE corner of  Sylvan Street and Van Nuys Blvd.

Tuesday, August 21, 2018

8/25 @ 2:00 pm - 4:00 pm The Museum Speaker Series - History of Van Nuys Airport (VNY) - Join us

This Saturday afternoon at The Museum, we will offer a fascinating overview of the history of Van Nuys Airport (VNY). The event begins at 2:00 pm and will last approximately one hour - then Q&A.  RSVP HERE.

Carrie Nicoletti, from Van Nuys Airport, Public and Community Relations will be the speaker for this event.

Also, a short viewing of One Six Right, an exhilarating documentary film that celebrates the unsung hero of aviation - the local airport - by tracing the life, history, and struggles of an airport icon: Southern California's Van Nuys Airport. Featuring thrilling aerial photography and a sweeping original score, the film dispels common misconceptions on the history of Van Nuys Airport.

Historic Overview - a little teaser...

On Dec. 17, 1928, the 25th anniversary of the Wright Brothers’ first flight – VNY was born as Metropolitan Airport through the establishment of a corporation by a small group of citizens.

With the outbreak of World War II, in 1942 the U.S. government purchased Metropolitan Airport and converted it into a military base to help protect the West Coast. The military also purchased an additional 163 acres of land for the construction of the Van Nuys Army Airfield, using new runways to train hundreds of P-38 Lightning pilots.

The 1950s brought substantial growth to general aviation at the airport and local industries. By 1957, the annual payroll of airport companies reached an impressive $43 million and the airport experienced its final name change to Van Nuys Airport. Residential growth also continued. The City of Los Angeles Zoning Commission allowed developers to build 150 new homes in areas surrounding the airport. In 1959, completion of the Sherman Way underpass enabled extension of the main runway from 6,000 to 8,000 feet as VNY ranked 25th in operations nationwide.

Please RSVP on EventBrite today. Cost: $10/person.

Free parking.  Elevator access.

Light snacks and refreshments served.

Walk-ins are okay too, but we would appreciate registering in advance.

The Museum is located at 18860 Nordhoff St. Suite 204
Northridge, CA 91324-3885.

Thank you.

Thursday, August 9, 2018

8-11 Walking tour of William Mellenthin Ranch-Style Homes - Sherman Oaks

Please join us for a fun morning on August 11th as we explore beyond the book and physically view and discuss the homes of builder William Mellenthin.

Saturday, August 11, 2018
10:00 am – 12:00 pm
$10/pp - RSVP in advance on EVENTBRITE (okay to show up on 8/11, but we would like to know you are attending- send us an email at

Please bring a hat, wear walking shoes and sunscreen. Water will be provided to all attendees. Light refreshments will also be provided at home at end of tour.

Docent Michel Stevens will take attendees on a fun and educational walk through a Sherman Oaks neighborhood that has a cluster of southern California builder William Mellenthin’s ranch style “Birdhouse” homes.

Cost: $10/pp; PLEASE RSVP and pay in advance via EVENTBRITE.  Walk-in attendees welcome, but we would appreciate advance notice by calling 818-347-9665 or and let us know you will be attending.

At the end of the walk, we will enter one of the homes for a more in-depth discussion and an opportunity for attendees to meet author Chris Lukather and to purchase a signed copy of his book. Cost of the book is $30.  He spent three years researching in order to create this terrific book. A portion of proceeds will benefit The Museum.

In the 1940s, ’50s and ’60s housing developments began peppering the available land outside of Los Angeles. Affordable, family-friendly communities like the San Fernando Valley initiated an exodus to the suburbs. It was in the Valley that designer-builder William Mellenthin developed his singular brand of cozy, charming home which became known as the Mellenthin Birdhouse ranch home—so called because they featured a cupola or dovecote built prominently into the roof.

Directions to the walking tour:
Meet at NE corner of Addison St. & Ethel Ave. in Sherman Oaks at 9:55 am
Park at north end of Riverside Elementary School on Ethel Ave. & Huston St. (just two blocks south)

Google Map - click HERE:    Tel: 818-347-9665  

The Museum’s blog:

Invite a family member or friend to join this Saturday!