Notes From Your City Historian: Spring 2016

LaBallonaSchlMkg

The festive marking of the site of La Ballona School, now in its third structure. Did you know that La Ballona just celebrated its 150th anniversary?

The first “historic marker” to commemorate a historic site in Culver City, was placed on the colonnade entry of Thomas Ince’s first studio (now Sony Pictures) by the Native Daughters of the Golden West.  Our own Clarita Marquez Young was a part of that, years before our historical society was established. The next marking took place in Victory, now Dr. Paul Carlson Park, a Culver City Chamber of Commerce action to commemorate the Early Settler Families.

Our society’s marking process calls for identification of historic sites or structures  in Culver City that are at least fifty years old.  The society’s bylaws recognizes a Historic Sites Committee, which submits sites, with justification, to the board for action, with approval by the property owner for placement and wording for a bronze plaque.  Some are placed on a building, while others are mounted in concrete.  The committee orders the marker, within the funds budgeted.  Cost is a function of the size and number of words. From the beginning, our historical society used the opportunity to tell the story of the site.

After our society formed, Charles R. Lugo served as the first historic sites chair.  At that time, the city did not have an historic preservation ordinance, so it was a new venture for all of us.

The Historic Sites Committee plans the unveiling of the marker while the plaque is in production.  Invitations and publicity are sent by the society.  The program is a cooperative effort of the society and property owner.  Although the event itself is a festive occasion, the goal of preserving local history is met over time.

With the upcoming celebration of our city’s centennial year, we are looking for suggestions for a centennial marking, and members to serve on the committee.

To learn more about each site already marked, you can search here.  This is a list of sites we have marked to date:

#1   City Hall

#2   The Hull Building

#3   St. Augustine Church

#4   The Citizen Building

#5    The Legion Building

#6    Main Street

 #7   Ince Studio#2

#8    Lugo Ranch

#9    The Helms Building

#10  La Ballona School

#11  Camp Latham

#12  Culver City’s first park (Carlson)

#13  Veterans Memorial Building

To learn more about the sites marked, volunteer for the Historic Sites committee or offer a suggestion for a Centennial marking, please contact the society!

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