La Jolla Historical Society

La Jolla Historical Society The La Jolla Historical Society inspires and empowers the community to make La Jolla's diverse past a relevant part of contemporary life. Office: 7846 Eads Avenue - By appointment only 10am to 4pm Monday - Friday.
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Appointments for research will be limited to one person or two from the same family. Gallery: 780 Prospect Street Open Noon to 4pm Thursday – Sunday by appointment only. Appointments to visit the gallery will be limited to six people. Free Admission

Appointments can be made by calling Deputy Director Dana Hicks at 858-459-5335 ext. 3 or emailing us at [email protected].

Operating as usual

Taking a look back at this 4th of July parade from 1924 (don't you love the cars?). From all of us at La Jolla Historica...
07/04/2021

Taking a look back at this 4th of July parade from 1924 (don't you love the cars?). From all of us at La Jolla Historical Society, we wish you a Happy 4th of July!

Taking a look back at this 4th of July parade from 1924 (don't you love the cars?). From all of us at La Jolla Historical Society, we wish you a Happy 4th of July!

From 1958, La Jolla's Rachel Tejada wins title at County Fair: "San Diego's beauties sometimes are hard to beat. As a ma...
07/01/2021
Raquel Tejada (Welch) wins Maid of California 1958

From 1958, La Jolla's Rachel Tejada wins title at County Fair: "San Diego's beauties sometimes are hard to beat. As a matter of fact, sometimes it's impossible. Such was the case this week with San Diego's Fairest of the Fair, 18 year old Raquel Tejada. Raquel was named the Fairest and Miss Contour in June and reigned over the county fair." Thanks to Barb Johnson Nielsen and CBS 8 San Diego for this throwback post!
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Se8N_bkF3JM

Original script August 27, 1958San Diego's beauties sometimes are hard to beat. As a matter of fact, sometimes it's impossible . Such was the case this week ...

"La Jolla Then and Now: Architecture of 1920s vs. 2020s" provides perspectives and stories on La Jolla in the 1920s from...
06/30/2021
La Jolla Then and Now: Architecture of 1920s vs. 2020s

"La Jolla Then and Now: Architecture of 1920s vs. 2020s" provides perspectives and stories on La Jolla in the 1920s from local experts including La Jolla Historical Society historian Carol Olten, Seonaid McArthur, chairwoman of the La Jolla Historical Society Landmarks Committee, architects Ione Stiegler of IS Architecture and Brian Will and Tim Golba. It's a great read! https://www.lajollalight.com/news/story/2021-06-30/la-jolla-then-and-now-architecture-of-1920s-vs-2020s

As the world emerges from the COVID-19 pandemic and ventures into this century’s decade of the '20s, the La Jolla Light takes a look back at what the '20s looked like the last time around in La Jolla and what they look like now.

Happy Father's Day to all! We hope you are enjoying your day!
06/20/2021

Happy Father's Day to all! We hope you are enjoying your day!

Happy Father's Day to all! We hope you are enjoying your day!

Looking for something new to do this weekend? Come visit our new exhibit, Our Ocean’s Edge, which features black and whi...
06/18/2021

Looking for something new to do this weekend? Come visit our new exhibit, Our Ocean’s Edge, which features black and white images from photographer Jasmine Swope’s quest to capture the essence of California’s marine parks. Accompanying the images, author Dwight Holing's prose contributes narrative interpretations of these important seascapes. Our Ocean’s Edge is a photographic documentary project that celebrates our fragile seascapes, from Southern to Northern California, while increasing awareness about their natural benefits and promoting ecological conservation. The exhibition runs June 5 to Sept. 5 at Wisteria Cottage Gallery, 780 Prospect St. We are open from noon to 4 p.m. Thursdays through Sundays. Admission is free.

Congratulations to our Historian Carol Olten for being honored by Save Our Heritage Organisation with the "Town Crier" a...
06/15/2021
La Jolla historian honored for her preservation efforts - She lives in a historic home has worked nearly 30 years for a historical society writes for a historic publication and does historical research on properties. It s therefore no surprise or ...

Congratulations to our Historian Carol Olten for being honored by Save Our Heritage Organisation with the "Town Crier" award for her work in historic preservation. In presenting her award, SOHO said of Olten: “You will be hard pressed to find another writer who has a better way with words for sharing San Diego and La Jolla history than Carol Olten. The breadth of topics she has written about include discussions of popular architectural styles and building types." To read more about Carol and her body of work view
http://www.sdnews.com/bookmark/27805553

She lives in a historic home, has worked nearly 30 years for a historical society, writes for a historic publication, and does historical research on properties. It s, therefore, no surprise or coincidence that Carol Olten of La Jolla Historical Society was honored recently with the Town Crier award...

From the Fall 2020 Timekeeper, a great snapshot of the past by guest writer Bill Canning. Growing up in Point Loma in th...
06/08/2021

From the Fall 2020 Timekeeper, a great snapshot of the past by guest writer Bill Canning. Growing up in Point Loma in the 1950’s, I thought live lobsters crawling in the kitchen sink and fresh caught abalone being cleaned and pounded in the back yard was a normal occurrence. For my stepfather, Ben Stone and other members of the Bottom Scratchers Diving Club, it was just another day in the ocean. The club was founded in 1933 by Glen Orr, Jack Prodanovich, and Stone with the clear waters and abundant sea life off La Jolla as their hunting ground. It was started in part to put dinner on the table during the great depression. Club membership was limited and reached a peak of less than 20. Initiation required prospective members to capture three abalones on a single breath, catch a 10-pound lobster, and wrestle a horn shark to the surface bare handed. Many of the club members were also renowned in the outside world. Dr. Carl Hubbs was professor emeritus at Scripps Institution of Oceanography and founder of the Hubbs Research Institute at Sea World. Lamar Boren innovated one of the first underwater camera housings and was cinematographer for the popular Sea Hunt TV series, Flipper, and the James Bond film Thunderball. Jimmy Stewart was the chief diving officer at Scripps for many years and taught many of its scientists to dive. Accompanying photographs by the late underwater photographer Lamar Boren are recent additions to the La Jolla Historical Society Archives.

Thank you to everyone who supported and made the 2021 Virtual Secret Garden Tour a success. - The five garden owners who...
05/24/2021
La Jolla Historical Society's 2021 Virtual Garden Tour Recording

Thank you to everyone who supported and made the 2021 Virtual Secret Garden Tour a success.
- The five garden owners who shared their gardens and gardening insights with us.
- Our sponsors and advertisers who financially supported the event
- And all of you who bought tickets to attend the event
All of the proceeds benefit the Society's educational programs and activities. If you were not able to attend or want to watch it again, visit our YouTube Channel: https://youtu.be/I78ihyhg4tU

A recording of La Jolla Historical Society's 2021 Virtual Garden Tour from Saturday, May 22nd 2021. The program includes video tours of four gardens from pre...

05/22/2021

Looking forward to seeing you all tonight at 7pm for the 2021 Virtual Secret Garden Tour. If you are registered, check your email for the link and the Virtual Program Guide. Don't forget we have live Q&A at the end of the program with the garden owners.

We are getting so excited for the Virtual Garden Tour this Saturday May 22. The gardens look amazing and our garden owne...
05/19/2021

We are getting so excited for the Virtual Garden Tour this Saturday May 22. The gardens look amazing and our garden owners are so knowledgeable. None of this would be possible without our sponsors and we are so appreciative of their support! https://lajollahistory.org/events/secret-garden-tour/ Walter Andersen Nursery Warwick's The Marine Room Girard Gourmet Anna Palmer Willis Allen Real Estate City National Bank Island Architects IS Architecture Elizabeth Barkett Matt Mangano Peek Brothers Fine Home Painting Torrey Pines Landscape Co. Inc. Neel's Nursery EcoDesignSD BYoung Design Ascot Shop Crown Point Clippers Tree Service Jahlel Hunter

We are getting so excited for the Virtual Garden Tour this Saturday May 22. The gardens look amazing and our garden owners are so knowledgeable. None of this would be possible without our sponsors and we are so appreciative of their support! https://lajollahistory.org/events/secret-garden-tour/ Walter Andersen Nursery Warwick's The Marine Room Girard Gourmet Anna Palmer Willis Allen Real Estate City National Bank Island Architects IS Architecture Elizabeth Barkett Matt Mangano Peek Brothers Fine Home Painting Torrey Pines Landscape Co. Inc. Neel's Nursery EcoDesignSD BYoung Design Ascot Shop Crown Point Clippers Tree Service Jahlel Hunter

05/12/2021

Join us for La Jolla Historical Society's Virtual Garden Tour Saturday, May 22 at 7:00pm. The program includes video tours of four gardens from previous tours and a "teaser" video of one of the 2022 gardens. Hear insights, learn tips and design ideas from the garden owners and ask them questions during live Q&A. Tickets are only $10 – $15 & sales benefit the Society's educational programs and activities. Buy your ticket today! https://www.eventbrite.com/e/virtual-garden-tour-2021-tickets-143799186237

On MAY 3, 1964, the Old Scripps Memorial Hospital on Prospect Street closed. The Hospital was another legacy of Ellen Br...
05/02/2021

On MAY 3, 1964, the Old Scripps Memorial Hospital on Prospect Street closed. The Hospital was another legacy of Ellen Browning Scripps who decided to build the hospital after realizing the La Jolla Sanatorium, which had beds for 10 adults and two infants, was inadequate for a town of 2,000 residents. Scripps Memorial Hospital La Jolla opened at 476 Prospect St. on Sept. 12, 1924 with 57 beds — in private rooms and two- and four-bed wards. The architect was Louis Gill, nephew of Irving, who designed Ellen’s house.

In 1950, 18 years after Ellen’s death, a new wing was added to the hospital, bringing the total number of beds to 105. But this was a stop-gap solution as the hospital was still bursting at the seams and needed serious modernization. By 1960, La Jolla’s population had grown to more than 10 times what it was in 1924, yet there was no room to build any new buildings. In 1959, the hospital’s board of directors voted to move from Prospect Street to a 40-acre site east of US 101 at 3770 Miramar Road, later renamed Genesee Avenue. To legally adhere to the terms of Scripps’ bequest, the area had to be incorporated into the 92037 zip code.

Then, as now, residents of The Village refused to acknowledge this area as part of La Jolla. More than 3,500 La Jollans signed petitions to state attorney general Stanley Mosk, “with the principal complaint that Ellen Browning Scripps had created a hospital for the Village of La Jolla in perpetuity and that Miramar Road was not La Jolla.” Mosk sued the hospital board in Superior Court but lost.

In 1964, the vacated hospital was purchased by Scripps Clinic, by then a separate company. The next year, it was renamed The Copley Center after a $550,000 gift from newspaper magnate James Copley. It offered outpatient care and was joined by a luxury hospital unit, the Kiewit Pavilion, in 1969. By 1977, however, Scripps Clinic also relocated to North Torrey Pines Road, and two years later, Scripps leased the two buildings to Science Applications Inc. (today SAIC). SAIC remained on site until 1987. The complex was then left vacant until it was converted into 47 condominium units in 1999.

At least once a week, someone comes to the 464 Prospect St. lobby wanting to see the building they were born in, according to one worker in the building. For more of the story, https://www.lajollalight.com/lifestyle/story/2019-08-27/anatomy-of-a-condo-complex-the-unusual-history-behind-la-jollas-464-prospect-st

We were sorry to hear of the passing of Jeffrey Donald Shorn, La Jolla Architect, Historic Preservation Architect and Ad...
04/26/2021

We were sorry to hear of the passing of Jeffrey Donald Shorn, La Jolla Architect, Historic Preservation Architect and Advocate, Teacher, Professor and Dean on Tuesday April 20, 2021. Jeffrey arrived in San Diego in the early 1970s and permanently moved to San Diego in 1975 along with his partner and husband Charles Kaminski.

His architectural practice in La Jolla, which primarily included private residences, stretched from 1981 to 2015. His passion however was for preservation, and he often guest lectured for various groups and spoke on many topics including Irving Gill's La Jolla Woman's Club. He was asked to join the San Diego Historic Resources Board in the 1980s and served two terms. He was on the Boards of Save Our Heritage Organization (SOHO), La Jolla Historical Society and the California Preservation Foundation. Jeffrey also got involved in El Pueblo Ribera as an impassioned architect. After his own unit in the compound was destroyed by fire, he designed one with great sensitivity to replace it. He received a People In Preservation Award and a preservation design award from San Diego Home/Garden Lifestyles magazine for this successful project.

Jeffrey taught at the New School of Architecture when it was first established by Dick Welsh in Chula Vista, then Carlsbad and later downtown. He created and taught the History of Architecture course and ultimately, he became Dean of the NewSchool in the early 1990s. Jeffrey gave one of the early talks of the Friends of San Diego Architecture at the NewSchool on "Lost San Diego". Subsequently he was asked to participate in a panel discussion on preservation at the Atheneum based on the "Lost San Diego" presentation.

His firm morphed from Pegasus Architecture + Design into Shorn + Kaminski Architects and eventually to Jeffrey D. Shorn Associates, Architects. His firm was part of the team that participated in the proposed development of the Balboa Theater into the San Diego Art Center. During the latter part of his career, he and cultural landscape historian Vonn Marie May wrote the nomination of the Salk Institute to the National Register of Historic Places. Although the Institute rejected the nomination, the buildings and its site remain eligible for listing. In 2016 SOHO awarded him and Charles Kaminski the SOHO People in Preservation Award for Lifetime Achievement for significant contributions to historic preservation in San Diego.

Jeffrey Shorn's life and profession was always one of dignity and grace. His respect for his students, his clients, and his professional colleagues was unique and is sorely missed.

The Green Dragon Colony, which consisted of 12 cottages in the village of La Jolla, was developed by Anna Held, a former...
04/18/2021

The Green Dragon Colony, which consisted of 12 cottages in the village of La Jolla, was developed by Anna Held, a former governess for the family of Ulysses St. Grant Jr., the 18th president’s son. A free spirit born in Berlin in 1849, Held came to La Jolla in 1894, the same year the railroad did. On the advice of a doctor friend, she purchased the undeveloped hillside from the previous landowners, Lila Hamilton and Lucetta French, for $165 ($5,030 today). Eucalyptus trees were planted on the site by Held's friend Kate Sessions, the famous horticulturalist. The mature trees joined with majestic Torrey pines to form a lush canopy over the colony.

“They were international elites — actresses, artists, musicians, writers and bohemian types,” said historian Molly McClain. McClain said the development — at first named “Green Dragon Camp” by a frequent guest, British novelist Beatrice Harraden — was “an extraordinary art colony that people all around the world knew about, and it was the reason a lot of people first learned about La Jolla.” (Indeed, in December 1901, the San Francisco Chronicle wrote: “La Jolla is the Green Dragon Colony and the Green Dragon Colony is La Jolla.”)

The first of the cottages, built around a fireplace Held crafted from stones she gathered on the bluffs, was designed by Held's friend, Irving Gill, for the sum of $15. To accommodate her visitors, Held expanded her own home, and then constructed additional guest cottages--each with its own personality. There was the Ark, a boat-shaped structure with portholes and a prow pointing seaward; the Jack O' Lantern; the Doll's House, built to house Held's collection of 200 dolls; the Oriole's Nest; and the Gables. Perhaps the most intriguing cottage was Wahnfried, which Held built for her husband, singer and composer Max Heinrich.

Held sold the Green Dragon property in September 1912 for $30,000 — one of the largest real-estate transactions at the time — to two Los Angeles businessmen who planned to strip it and turn it either into a hotel or apartments. The cottages were spared when that plan sputtered and the land was sold in 1926 to Josephine Seaman. The La Jolla philanthropist converted all but four of the cottages into shops but left them all in their original state. “Josephine is sometimes one of the more overlooked figures in the history of La Jolla, having been part of the community from the early 1920s until her death in 1958,” said Carol Olten, historian with the La Jolla Historical Society.

In 1944, the land was purchased by the Moshers — a retired produce broker named Jack and his opera-singer wife, Alice — as an investment. But they found the property so beautiful, they lived in one of the residential cottages until both their deaths (in 1974 and 1976). Their son, Robert Mosher, was an artist turned architect who went on to design the Coronado Bridge. Among his earliest projects were remodels of the shop cottages into larger, more modern buildings. Robert’s firm, Mosher Drew, opened an office in one of them (at 1264 Prospect St.) in 1948.

Another cottage, Wahnfried, 1270 Prospect St., became part of the Chart House restaurant chain in the 1970s and, following a 1981 fire and more renovation and expansion, part of the Eddie V’s chain in 2011. Still visible over the dining room fireplace at Eddie V's is Held's inscription, in German: "Sacred to me is my hearth; sacred to me is my home."

Address

780 Prospect St
La Jolla, CA
92037

Opening Hours

Thursday 12:00 - 16:00
Friday 12:00 - 16:00
Saturday 12:00 - 16:00
Sunday 12:00 - 16:00

Telephone

(858) 459-5335

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The La Jolla Historical Society Wisteria Cottage Gallery is open as of October 15, Thursday through Sunday, 12noon to 4:00pm. The Office & Research Center is open as of October 1 by appointment only. All visitors are required to wear face masks and observe social distancing guidelines.

Office: 7846 Eads Avenue Open 10am to 4pm Monday - Friday Gallery: 780 Prospect Street Open Noon to 4pm Thursday – Sunday Free Admission!

The La Jolla Historical Society is a 501c3 nonprofit organization whose mission is to inspire and empower the community to make La Jolla’s diverse past a relevant part of contemporary life, encouraging exploration of the past in ways that inform the present and shape the future. The Society preserves and shares La Jolla’s distinctive sense of place, and serves as a community resource and gathering place where residents and visitors explore history, art, ideas and culture.

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Comments

1947 my mom and dad on a romantic date.
La Jolla window decorating contest and much more!
Are there any photos / videos / articles inspired by the Tijuana 1964: The Photography of Harry Crosby exhibit? Can't make it in person but would love to see what is possible to see online.
On Sunday, we went to see the Harry Crosby exhibit at the La Jolla Historical Society. I always love going there. Most folks don’t remember that it was Coles Book Store, back when I was growing up. I would often take the walk from my home, down on Coast Blvd. to Coles, as a change from the Unicorn, where I spent most of my free time, reading, for free, anything I wanted. I spent many, many hours draped over one of the sofas or chairs littered everywhere. It was better than arguing with my mother all afternoon. Anyway, Crosby was one of the teachers at La Jolla High School, and I knew him there. I also grew up with his kids. (Some of you locals might recall that Robinn Crosby was in the rock band Ratt, and he subsequently died of an overdose.) ANYWAY, Crosby was famous for his travels throughout Baja, and his photography of both Tijuana and his travels. His exhibition at the Society is of his TJ work in 1964, and it is exquisite. It is definitely worth a trip. Isaac was there, along with part of his family, and also Caro Olten, who was the film critic at the Union Tribune, back when it was still a real newspaper. (Conservative, but still a real one.) Go see thevshow.
Happy 4th of July La Jolla. Don and Bob Okey mid 1920s.
#ljsgt2019
#ljsgt2019
We are the Allisons from La Jolla! Lots of photos from the 1920s and 30s to share.
The Allison Family in La Jolla, 1926
Hi. I worked at the Mobile Gas Station (Owned by Harold Kramer and then "Steve") on the corner of Fay and Prospect in 1976 and 1977 while I was attending SDSU. While working there, I found old automobile license plate frames that read: "British Motors - La Jolla". Do you have any information on that automobile dealership? My internet search came up empty. I have one of the frames.
i wonder if you have anything on the mithras bookstore and unicorn theater.
I am Soo-Ling Quon Chan..the eldest daughter of King Quon who owned Quon Manes. it was touching to read these stories of my families business and it brought back fond memories. As children we used to play in the store, and as teens we worked in the shop. The apartment behind the shop was decorated as a showroom for the shops antiques. Dad had customers from all over the US. J Edgar Hoover would come in with his Body Guard Clyde Tolson and buy a years supply of Mumtaz incense. Dr Salks wife purchased a Japanese Chest. Architect Frank Lloyd Wrights son and wife visited the shop when in town. My Dad also owned a Restaurant on Silverado Avenue called King Quon plus a bamboo Shop on Prospect. He had 3 businesses to raise 5 children. As a teen, I worked in the Restaurant and served J Edgar Hoover. He gave me a $9 tip. He heard I had a stamp collection and from then on...he would send me letters and stamps from all over the world. I discovered a Menu he autographed to my Dad thanking him for the special dinners he cooked. J Edgar would vacation every summer in La Jolla at the Del Charro Hotel. 1975 my sister Shar-ling died of cancer, 1977, we lost my father to cancer, and 1998 we lost my mother from a stroke. Prior to that she tried to maintain the love of our shop where she could keep in touch with all the shops friends, but it was too much responsibility at her age. I moved after college, married and now live in Palo Alto for over 45 years. The store has always been in my blood. I went to my 60th LJHS Reunion Class of 1955, (our last 2012) and would always do a nostalgic tour where QM used to be. Sadly...My brother died in the family home in Mt Soledad in Dec 2017. Us 3 surviving sisters had to clear the home of my Mom and Dads treasures...many from the store after closing. My Dad had an eye for fine Chinese Art. I now cherish some of his artistic talents in my home. I surely appreciate those who wrote their memories of QM. I would love to hear more of your stories. Thank you, Soo-Ling Quon Chan [email protected]