Mary-Allely-2014smOBHS ARCHIVES preserve local history. We need: Historical Photos, Items, Cash & Archival Supplies, Documentation & Interviews (more info. on Archive Page) Donate gifts at OBHS programs. Archive Donations Only Contact Archivist Mary Allely (858) 550-5982. OBHS is a 501 (C) 3 Non-profit, Donations May Be Tax Deductible.  All General Info. Contact PAT JAMES, Pres. or  (619) 226-8125.

2016 OB EXPOSED! Photos of OB and PL

OB-Exposed-logoJoin us Fri., May 2o, 6 PM-8:30 PM, at the Masonic Center, 1711 Sunset Cliffs Blvd., O.B. as the Ocean Beach Historical Society Presents: OB EXPOSED! Photographic Impressions of Ocean Beach & Point Loma.
Enjoy the evening with  Peoples Food Co-op Nancy Cassidy is our OB Exposed! M.C and eat yummy refreshments! Enter our Lucky 50/50 Opportunity Drawing and OB Exposed! Flash Drawing (includes great items donated from local venders) Suggested OBHS donation $5, but any donation is appreciated. Your support helps us preserve O.B. and our history. Consider becoming a members, buy opportunity drawing tickets, donate to the Ocean Beach Historical Society or buy our gift items & books.

Enter OB EXPOSED! Exhibit & Contest is open to all levels and ages. Enter photos taken in
Ocean Beach or Point Loma… old photos, new photos, color or black & white.
PRIZES & Winning categories are:
$100 Prize+T-Shirt:   Special Subject Prize – “Piering-thru-the-LENS” OB Pier Photo and  People’s Choice (Voted by show attendees)
$25 Prize:   Best Color, Best Black & White, Best Vintage (Historic)Best Special Effects, Best Child’s Under age 16 and Best in Show    
Professional Category: For Exhibit Only… Not Judged.— Professionals can display cards and/or brochures by their work. They may donate photos if they choose to.Contest Specifications:
Please Submit by May 19th  to OB Business Center, 4876 Santa Monica Ave., OB (9 am-5 pm, Mon.- Fri.). Limit 5 photos total, other than Vintage (Historic).  All photos must be mounted on white or black card stock, matboard or other art paper (No frames).
Fill out the OB Exposed Entry Form 2016(s) at the OB Business Center  (attach to the back of photo. Include a $3 entry fee (per photo) when you drop off photo(s).  
Ocean Beach Historical Society is NOT responsible for lost or damaged photos. Note: Photos will be available at the event for pick up at 8:30 pm or at The OB Business Center (9 am-5 pm, M-F).  Any photos NOT picked up after 30 days will become the property of the Ocean Beach Historical Society.

Please join us an evening in the fun and many wonderful photos!

Apr. 21- The Carlson & Higgins OB Scandals

Thursday,  April 21, 7 pm at P.L. United Methodist Church, 1984 Sunset Cliffs Blvd., O.B.
The OBHS presents “The  Carlson & Higgins  O.B. Scandals” By Bruce Semelsberger. In 1887 Billy Carlson and Frank Higgins (credited as the founders of O.B.) renamed “Mussel Beds” to “Ocean Beach”. Following that they were linked to numerous scandals. To name a few: land deals, an O.B. hotel and trains. Later Carlson became San Diego’s youngest Mayor; while Higgin’s became a tragic figure. Suggested OBHS Program donation $5, but any donation is appreciated.

Bruce Semelsberger is the Archivist for the Pacific Southwest Railway Museum 1985 – present. Bruce built an archival collection and gives lectures on the railroad.
Bruce also lectures about local history. He has been prominent  feature speaker at The Congress of History of  San Diego and Imperial Counties annual conferences.

The Beloved Wisteria Cottage

clark-wisteria-housesmOn March 17, 7 PM,  at the P.L. United Methodist Church, 1984 Sunset Cliffs Blvd., O.B. we celebrate Spring with a program about the history and O.B. spirit of the beloved Wisteria Cottage and it’s famous 100+ year-old vines. You will see and hear what has made the historical site so special… from the people who have lived there, to the people that have partied there!
Along with the wisteria vines, we will also celebrate the “shamrock”… since this is St. Paddy’s Day! You’ll be able to enter our Lucky Shamrock 50/50 Opportunity Drawing.
Come join in the fun on the evening of March 17th  (in the spirit of purple & green) as we celebrate O.B. style

Feb. 18-“Centennial of the Devastating 1916 Flood and the Rainmaker”

Hatfield-montage-sepiaFeb. 18, 2016, The OBHS & Rick Crawford  presented the “Centennial of the Devastating 1916 Flood and the Rainmaker”.
One hundred years ago, the drought-fearing city councilmen of San Diego hired a rainmaker. For a handshake pledge of $10,000, Charles Hatfield built a wooden tower, set up equipment at Lake Morena, and began “milking the skies.” In the days that followed, San Diego was deluged with nearly 30 inches of rain. Mission Valley flooded, reservoirs filled and dams collapsed, roads and bridges washed away. Did the rainmaker produce the epic storms of January 1916?  Or was this massive deluge an act of God?
In words and pictures this presentation will re-visit the famed Rainmaker Flood and look at the strange story of an itinerant sewing machine salesman—turned rainmaker, who claimed the historic rainfall as “an act of Hatfield.”

Rick Crawford is the supervisor of Special Collections at the San Diego Public Library. He is the former archives director at the San Diego Historical Society, where he also edited the Journal of San Diego History. He has degrees in history and library science, and has written extensively on local history, including articles for the San Diego Union-Tribune, and the books “San Diego Yesterday” and “The Way We Were in San Diego”. 

OB’s History of Volunteerism

Claudia-lips-smJan. 21, 2016 the Ocean Beach Historical Society Presented: Guest  Claudia Jack, as she presented “OB’s History of VOLUNTEERISM”. She told of how the many organizations and volunteers helped make OB special… and many of them attended the program. We are thankful to the  multitude of caring and helpful residents that are the heart of of our beach town.  Claudia included information sheets about the many local and nation organizations and how you can get involved.. and keep OB’s  wonderful community volunteerism spirit alive!

We thank  Claudia for her enjoyable and  inspirational talk, and applaud her for her lifetime of VOLUNTEERISM!


OBHS celebrated the “Centennial of Historic SUNSET CLIFFS!”

sunset cliffs

Nov. 19, 2015, over 200 attendees were at the Ocean Beach Historical Society  “Centennial of Historic SUNSET CLIFFS!” at St. Peter’s by the Sea Lutheran Church.
Topics included: Ever wonder what was along Sunset Cliffs Blvd 100 years ago? How about 600 years? 70 million?
Sunset Cliffs Natural Park Chair, Ann Swanson, and members talked of the park’s dinosaurs, sea-going monster lizards, Kumeyaay Indians and other early visitors. Also, about the Sunset Cliffs’ connection to Balboa Park’s famous exposition, the contributions of sporting goods magnate and developer Albert Spalding as he created the cliffs’ romantic bridges, gazebos and staircases. Hear about the secret passageways, caves and myths. Then hear of the later history of neglect and rubble-dumping; and now the renewed caring led by the community.
The human history of Sunset Cliffs started with the Kumeyaay who considered Sunsets Cliffs sacred, a place to be shared with all. Around the turn of the century came the Theosophists and Albert Spalding, who developed the linear section in time for the Panama California Exposition of 1915. This  program will included coastal bluffs photos showing images from 1915, contrasting them with their present formations (photographed by Steve Rowell). An update regarding park planning efforts will be included, as well as a look toward future plans and needs.

Mar. 4 & 5, 2016 Congress of History Conference Scandals & Scoundrels


Don’t miss this fabulous 2016  Congress of History Conference “Scandals & Scoundrels”
Friday, March 4 and Saturday, March 5, 2016 at San Diego OASIS at Mission Valley Macy Store, 3rd floor—1702 Camino del Rio North, San Diego, CA 92108 For information and reservations:
The Congress of History of San Diego and Imperial Counties is a  networking organization that brings together representatives of historical  organizations, groups, museums and historical archives in California’s San Diego and Imperial Counties.


Get every new post delivered to your Inbox.

Join 26 other followers