Historical Society of Long Beach

Historical Society of Long Beach Where history lives...

The Historical Society of Long Beach is a non-profit organization founded in 1962, with the mission to collect, preserve and present the history of the Long Beach community for the citizens of today and our posterity. Through our collections and programs, we connect citizens to the people and events that shaped the city we call home. The HSLB manages a growing collection of thousands of documents, images and ephemera, as well as an extensive newspaper collection and library. Our gallery exhibits change on a regular basis and are kept free and open to the public due to the generosity of our donors and sponsors, who give regularly through memberships, fundraisers and donations. Members in good standing enjoy free access to research the collections and receive discounts on products and special events. Non-members pay a $35 fee for research appointments. Find more information about membership, giving, products and services at hslb.org.

Mission: The HSLB is a non-profit organization sustained by memberships, donation and sponsorships. We collect, preserve and present local history. Through historical collections, exhibits and programs we connect people to the past and to the place they live.

We were sad to learn of the untimely loss of one of our Long Beach community’s powerfully positive forces, Carolyn Smith...
06/03/2019

We were sad to learn of the untimely loss of one of our Long Beach community’s powerfully positive forces, Carolyn Smith Watts. Among her many notable achievements, Carolyn, a past HSLB board member, helped champion the stories of twelve African American women who made a difference in Long Beach history, featured in a local traveling exhibition titled, “Breaking Through; Lighting the Way.” The exhibition and accompanying book highlighted the experiences, challenges and perseverance of black women who migrated to Long Beach from the segregated South during WWII, looking for new opportunities in a city that didn’t exactly roll out the welcome mat. This photo exemplifies Carolyn’s radiant positivity even in the midst her very difficult treatment. We will sincerely miss her and send our deepest condolences to all who love and will miss her. Luckily for us, Carolyn’s contributions will live on in the souls she touched and the causes she championed. Thank you, Carolyn. RIP

Having hosted our See, Sip & Savor tour a couple weeks ago, we know how important successful fundraisers are for our loc...
06/01/2019
Long Beach Heritage Explores Great Homes With Tour

Having hosted our See, Sip & Savor tour a couple weeks ago, we know how important successful fundraisers are for our local non-profits. Our friends in local history at Long Beach Heritage still have a few tickets for Sunday's Great Homes Tour 2019 It's a citywide, self-driving tour of six significant homes that demonstrate the rich tapestry of our city's architectural styles. While you're out and about, sample the eateries and explore another part of town, stop in to check out the local artists of the Long Beach Mid City Studio Tour, or bookend your tour with a host of other local opportunities for a rich and rewarding Long Beach weekend!

In the early 1900s, Long Beach was the fastest growing city in the United States. The region’s rapidly increasing population created an urgent need for housing.

City Hall Pt5: A civic center for the ages! Attempting to stem the tide of urban decay, #longbeachca cleared its civic s...
05/31/2019

City Hall Pt5: A civic center for the ages! Attempting to stem the tide of urban decay, #longbeachca cleared its civic slate in the mid ‘70s. The Moderne City Hall, Municipal Utilities Building, LB Veterans Memorial Hall and the classic Carnegie Library were demolished for an ultra modern #brutalism styled civic center in Lincoln Park, designed by a consortium of prominent local architects: Hugh & Donald Gibbs, Frank Homokla & Assoc., Killingsworth, Brady & Assoc., and Kenneth S Wing & Assoc. In this 1976 image the Civic Center takes shape while the Hubbard Building rests horizontally following its destruction, which took more than one attempt to topple! Never well-loved, for the ages it was not, its planned demise began less than forty years after its hopeful debut. In the midst of reconstruction at this moment, yet another rendition of City Hall will soon follow the city’s traditional of erasing its rich civic architectural history. But not without a trace, thanks to photos and memories we preserve; that’s where we come in! #hslb #wherehistorylives #downtownlongbeach #socalhistory #socalhistoricarchitecture #longbeachcalifornia #historymuseum #historybuff #visitlb

Help us preserve #longbeachhistory one photo, one document, one story at a time. #longbeachgives is coming, 9.19.2019. #...
05/30/2019

Help us preserve #longbeachhistory one photo, one document, one story at a time. #longbeachgives is coming, 9.19.2019. #longbeachca #longbeachcalifornia #hslb #wherehistorylives #historymuseum #historylbc #historylover #vintagelongbeach #socalhistory #socal

05/28/2019
Historical Society of Long Beach

Pardon our mess while we prepare our latest exhibition. If you've popped in or peered into the #HSLB gallery, it's barren walls and echoes. But not for long, because we're hard at work building #WaterChangesEverything. Water shaped our early days, profoundly affects us today and holds ominous implications for our future, because eventually, WATER ALWAYS WINS.
Members and sponsors keep our exhibition free and open to the public. Learn more and become a sponsor today at https://hslb.org/water/ to support this historical and timely look at local #water.
#wherehistorylives #socalhistory #allboutwater #historylbc #longbeachhistory #longbeachca #longbeachcalifornia #historybuff #historylover #historymuseum

Today we remind each other that Memorial Day is more than a day for barbecues, pool parties or a discount at the car lot...
05/27/2019

Today we remind each other that Memorial Day is more than a day for barbecues, pool parties or a discount at the car lot. It is a day set aside in sincere gratitude, when we remember those who sacrificed their lives in service to our nation.

#MemorialDay originated as #DecorationDay. During the American Civil War, the horrific casualties led to a more formal and dedicated practice of graveside decoration in both the North and South. The Grand Army of the Republic, a Union veterans group, declared May 30th, 1868 the day to decorate the graves of the war dead with flowers. After WWI the holiday was extended to include all Americans who died while serving the military in any war, and during WWII it was officially declared Memorial Day. When the Uniform Holiday Act went into effect in 1971, Memorial Day became an official holiday and all Federal holidays were moved to Mondays to provide for more three day holiday weekends. Memorial Day has since been celebrated on the last Monday in May, the extra day off many take for granted today. #takeamoment today in #gratitude and #respect .
Image: #longbeachca #Scout Troop 74 of Long Beach Area Council Boy Scouts raises the flag at Sunnyside Cemetery in observance of Memorial Day in 2018. #honor #service #sacrifice

City Hall Pt 4: Long Beach goes Gotham City! On March 10, 1933, the #greatdepression settling in, #longbeachca shook wit...
05/27/2019

City Hall Pt 4: Long Beach goes Gotham City! On March 10, 1933, the #greatdepression settling in, #longbeachca shook with a blow only Mother Nature could deliver. While City Hall survived the ‘33 quake, as did all of the city’s iconic skyscrapers, its brick facade and masonry structural supports were significantly damaged. Rehabilitated with a new reinforced composite concrete structure and sleek gunite exterior, City Hall adopted a Modernistic style, like many federally funded public works projects constructed during that time. Re-designed by Cecil Schilling, this beautiful structure would serve the city until 1977, when the city demolished it and its entire civic structure family in favor of an all new civic center intended to resurrect an ailing downtown with a futuristic design for the ages. Part 5 tomorrow. #hslb #wherehistorylives #historymuseum #historylbc #historylover #pwamoderne #socalhistoricarchitecture #socalarchitecture #socalhistory #longbeachcalifornia #downtownlongbeach #vintagelongbeach

City Hall Pt 3: #longbeachca ‘s original city hall shared the civic stage with its younger & bigger sibling for less tha...
05/26/2019

City Hall Pt 3: #longbeachca ‘s original city hall shared the civic stage with its younger & bigger sibling for less than a decade before it was demolished to make way for the stunning Art Moderne style Public Utilities Bldg by Dedrick & Bobbe in 1931, pictured here. Like all other Long Beach civic buildings, it too fell to the wrecking ball in the 1970s. But first, a disaster would strike that would reset the architectural stage in the seaside city. Part 4 tomorrow. #hslb #wherehistorylives #historymuseum #historylbc #historylover #socalarchitecture #socalhistoricarchitecture #socalhistory #longbeachcalifornia #downtownlongbeach #vintagelongbeach #longbeacharchitecture

05/25/2019
City Hall Pt2: #longbeachca grew rapidly in the first decade of the 20th Century, overwhelming the little city hall, whi...
05/24/2019

City Hall Pt2: #longbeachca grew rapidly in the first decade of the 20th Century, overwhelming the little city hall, which was moved across the street (inset) to the NW corner of Pacific at Broadway in May of ‘21 to make way for a new 8 floor city hall (right), designed by W. Horace Austin, which opened in 1923. In this photo, both city halls can be seen, with the Lincoln Park farmers market in full swing! Part 3 later. #hslb #wherehistorylives #historymuseum #historylbc #historylover #socalhistoricarchitecture #socalhistory #longbeachcalifornia #longbeachca #downtownlongbeach #flashbackfriday #historicimages #vintagelongbeach

#onthisday in #longbeachca history, May 24, 1899, 120 years ago today, the cornerstone of the first city hall was placed...
05/24/2019

#onthisday in #longbeachca history, May 24, 1899, 120 years ago today, the cornerstone of the first city hall was placed just north of Broadway, right smack in the middle of Pacific Avenue for a commanding view of the Pacific. Pictured: opening day, Oct 1899. It served as both city council chambers and public library until the Carnegie Library opened in Pacific (Lincoln) Park in 1909. Part 2 later today. One of 40,000 historic images in the #hslb archives. #wherehistorylives #historymuseum #historylbc #historylover #socalhistoricarchitecture #socalhistory #longbeachcalifornia #flashbackfriday

Historical Society of Long Beach's cover photo
05/22/2019

Historical Society of Long Beach's cover photo

05/21/2019
Rancho Los Cerritos

Often overlooked, local #SoCal #Tongva culture and history is surprisingly rich and dynamic, and with the challenges we face today, there's much to be learned from those who came before. Learn more. Plan a visit to Rancho Los Cerritos. From its historic adobe walls, gardens, exhibits, special kids events and free summer concert series, it's a secret local historic treasure with deep #longbeachca roots. Trust us, you'll be glad you did.
#longbeachcalifornia #visitlb #historymatters #historymuseum #socalhistory #longbeachhistory

Watch as Tongva artist Craig Torres speaks about the special Tongva exhibit on display now at Rancho Los Cerritos through March 2020. He will be leading the Clapper Stick Instrument Workshop on June 15th at the Rancho. Click the sign-up button to make your very own Tongva instrument!

This stunning #hughdavies 20th Century House staircase was featured on our 2017 See Sip & Savor tour. Missed it? Join ou...
05/21/2019

This stunning #hughdavies 20th Century House staircase was featured on our 2017 See Sip & Savor tour. Missed it? Join our friends at Long Beach Heritage for their 18th annual Great Homes Tour 2019 on June 2nd. Six #greathomes, one #longbeachca! Tickets & info at www.lbheritage.org. Event supports #lbheritage local architectural preservation advocacy and the #bembridgehouse . #historicpreservation #preservationmonth #preservationmatters #hometour #longbeachcalifornia #visitlb

We can't thank everyone enough for contributing to the success of our 2019 See Sip & Savor in support of our efforts to ...
05/19/2019

We can't thank everyone enough for contributing to the success of our 2019 See Sip & Savor in support of our efforts to collect, preserve and present the history of the Long Beach community we share. To our exceptionally gracious homeowners, Craig Carter & Marlene Rocha Farooq, M Lissette Flores & Bob Marsocci, Geraldine Knatz & John Mulvey, and Jan Hower & Joseph Hower, our deepest appreciation for allowing us to invite our guests into your homes for a lovely evening.

To our volunteer board members Karen Harper, Roxanne Patmor, Kristi Fischer, Niki Brown Tennant, Melanie Retzsch Werts, and Joan Van Hooten and all of their volunteer friends, spouses and family members, including Chef Andrew Thomas Bice, that they roped in to so beautifully cater our event, thank you for the culinary magic!

Thanks to our wine sponsors Long Beach Hospitality Alliance and Willmore Wine Bar for the wonderful wine to compliment all those tasty bites!
To all of our event volunteers who gave up a precious Saturday evening on our behalf, out sincerest gratitude. We most certainly could not have done it without each and every one of you!

And thank you to LBUSD Board Member Megan McGuiness Kerr for arranging for our use of the Los Cerritos School auditorium for Ms. Knatz's enlightening presentation of the Los Cerritos neighborhood's rich history, which predates our city's founding!

And to all of our event sponsors and ticket holders, thank you for your generous support, with a special appreciative nod to our Crest Circle members for your exceptional generosity. As an organization that depends upon the generosity of others for all that we do, we thank you all from the bottom of our history-loving hearts!

Interior shots are limited to protect our homeowners' privacy. For more information on the Historical Society of Long Beach, go to hslb.org or visit us in our Bixby Knolls gallery and research center at 4260 Atlantic Ave., Long Beach 90807. An all new exhibition, Water Changes Everything, debuts to the public July 19, 2019.

We can't thank everyone enough for contributing to the success of our 2019 See Sip & Savor in support of our efforts to collect, preserve and present the history of the Long Beach community we share. To our exceptionally gracious homeowners, Craig Carter & Marlene Rocha Farooq, M Lissette Flores & Bob Marsocci, Geraldine Knatz & John Mulvey, and Jan Hower & Joseph Hower, our deepest appreciation for allowing us to invite our guests into your homes for a lovely evening.

To our volunteer board members Karen Harper, Roxanne Patmor, Kristi Fischer, Niki Brown Tennant, Melanie Retzsch Werts, and Joan Van Hooten and all of their volunteer friends, spouses and family members, including Chef Andrew Thomas Bice, that they roped in to so beautifully cater our event, thank you for the culinary magic!

Thanks to our wine sponsors Long Beach Hospitality Alliance and Willmore Wine Bar for the wonderful wine to compliment all those tasty bites!
To all of our event volunteers who gave up a precious Saturday evening on our behalf, out sincerest gratitude. We most certainly could not have done it without each and every one of you!

And thank you to LBUSD Board Member Megan McGuiness Kerr for arranging for our use of the Los Cerritos School auditorium for Ms. Knatz's enlightening presentation of the Los Cerritos neighborhood's rich history, which predates our city's founding!

And to all of our event sponsors and ticket holders, thank you for your generous support, with a special appreciative nod to our Crest Circle members for your exceptional generosity. As an organization that depends upon the generosity of others for all that we do, we thank you all from the bottom of our history-loving hearts!

Interior shots are limited to protect our homeowners' privacy. For more information on the Historical Society of Long Beach, go to hslb.org or visit us in our Bixby Knolls gallery and research center at 4260 Atlantic Ave., Long Beach 90807. An all new exhibition, Water Changes Everything, debuts to the public July 19, 2019.

05/19/2019
See Sip & Savor 2019, Los Cerritos Edition!

A fun little recap of our 2019 See, Sip, & Savor Los Cerritos neighborhood edition, with sincerest thanks to all who made it possbile in support of our mission to collect, preserve and present the rich history of our Long Beach community.

We can't thank everyone enough for contributing to the success of our 2019 See, Sip, & Savor in support of our efforts t...
05/19/2019

We can't thank everyone enough for contributing to the success of our 2019 See, Sip, & Savor in support of our efforts to collect, preserve and present the history of the Long Beach community we share. To our exceptionally gracious homeowners, Craig Carter & Marlene Rocha Farooq, M Lissette Flores & Bob Marsocci, Geraldine Knatz & John Mulvey, and Jan Hower & Joseph Hower, our deepest appreciation for allowing us to invite our guests into your homes for a lovely evening.
To our volunteer board members Karen Harper, Roxanne Patmor, Kristi Fischer, Niki Brown Tennant, Melanie Retzsch Werts, and Joan Van Hooten and all of their volunteer friends, spouses and family members, including Chef Andrew Thomas Bice, that they roped in to so beautifully cater our event, thank you for the culinary magic!
Thanks to our wine sponsors Long Beach Hospitality Alliance and Willmore Wine Bar for the wonderful wine to compliment all those tasty bites!
To all of our event volunteers who gave up a precious Saturday evening on our behalf, out sincerest gratitude. We most certainly could not have done it without each and every one of you!
And thank you to LBUSD Board Member Megan McGuiness Kerr for arranging for our use of the Los Cerritos School auditorium for Ms. Knatz's enlightening presentation of the Los Cerritos neighborhood's rich history, which predates our city's founding!
And to all of our event sponsors and ticket holders, thank you for your generous support, with a special appreciative nod to our Crest Circle members for your exceptional generosity. As an organization that depends upon the generosity of others for all that we do, we thank you all from the bottom of our history-loving hearts!

Photos from Historical Society of Long Beach's post
05/19/2019

Photos from Historical Society of Long Beach's post

Address

4260 Atlantic Ave
Long Beach, CA
90807

General information

Visits to the HSLB Gallery are free of charge. Historical Collections are accessible during public hours for a research fee of $35 or free with your membership.

Opening Hours

Tuesday 13:00 - 17:00
Wednesday 13:00 - 17:00
Thursday 13:00 - 19:00
Friday 13:00 - 17:00
Saturday 11:00 - 17:00

Telephone

(562) 424-2220

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