Fall 2021 Message

Hello Members, Friends, and Neighbors,

Hard to believe that it is Fall 2021. I am not sure about you, but this year flew by! Even though we have not been open to the public, we have been very busy inside the Historical Society. I want to thank Clare Denk to aiding us in presenting our first program to the public. It was a wonderful collaboration of shared Culver Theatre history by Eric Sims, Associate General Manager, Center Theatre Group and our Interim Programs Vice-President Clare Denk. But the great surprise was that Mark Morris our Media Archivist, got it up on our YouTube channel in less than 48 hours for everyone to view! Great job, everyone.

Our volunteers have been working hard putting the final touches inside the museum, with a fresh coat of paint, new exhibits, new store items, and a fresh look on the outside too.

We have missed you all so very much and know that there is nothing like being in person, so we have decided to take a stab at doing just that. September 19, 2021 marks our 104th year as an incorporated city, and we at the Culver City Historical Society agreed, what better way to launch our reopening. Please keep an eye on our website for updates, as well continue our practice of the City of Culver City and the Veteran’s Memorial Building protocols for safe public events. 

I want to take a moment to thank all of you for your continued support to the Culver City Historical Society. With your contributions our museum committee has made great strides this past eight months, make sure the collection is being preserved properly and entered in our data base. This is very tedious and time-consuming work. Thank you to our museum committee and our most recent volunteers Jack Bommarito, Kathleen McCann, and Abigail Cregor for their dedication to this collection. It truly takes a village!

Hope

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October 20 General Meeting and Program

Hollywood’s Trains & Trolleys presented by Marc Wanamaker
Rotunda Room, Veterans Memorial Building, 7PM

1929 promotion of Paramount’s sound films. World’s first fleet of Sound Trains. (Marc Wanamaker)

Have you started traveling again? Hop on board and travel, Hollywood-style, with film historian and author Marc Wanamaker as he shares stories from his and the late Josef Lesser’s new book Hollywood’s Trains & Trolleys. Learn about how the development of the transportation system in Southern California intertwined with the motion picture industry, starting over 100 years ago. Special focus will be given to the Culver City area.

Marc is always entertaining and a great storyteller. This program will not disappoint! There will be a book signing after the presentation. The book would make a great holiday gift for train and Hollywood enthusiasts alike.

Following COVID guidelines, masks are required inside Veterans Memorial Building.

Pre-registration is required via Eventbrite. The public is invited to this free program.

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UPDATE! The ARC is Reopening! Sunday, Sept. 19, 1-3pm

After 18 months, the Culver City Historical Society’s Archives and Resource Center will reopen to the public, resuming our bi-monthly Sunday afternoons starting Sunday, September 19 from 1:00-3:00 p.m. Come see how we’ve spruced up the place! September 20 is the anniversary of Culver City’s incorporation, so we couldn’t think of a better weekend to celebrate history with our neighbors and friends!

Masks are required inside. The entrance to the ARC is from the back parking lot at Veterans Memorial Building.

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Still Closed :(

As a (great!) tenant of the Veterans Memorial Building, we continue to adhere to their guidelines, so the Culver City Historical Society Archives and Resource Center remains closed.

We have been (safely) working hard inside the ARC during the pandemic, refreshing our exhibition space. We canNOT wait to welcome you back on our Sundays as soon as we are permitted! Please continue to check back for updates.

Pardon our dust!

In the meantime, our online shop is always open. Content on our YouTube channel has grown, if you’re like us and history video rabbit holes happen. Driving or peddling around Culver City, reading our marked sites, is always a good time! #HistoryIsFun

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Ince Boulevard

The most iconic real-life Hollywood neighborhood to ever sprout up is located right here in Culver City. This street is named after film pioneer Thomas Ince. One hundred years later, this street is still the center of attention. Amazon is building a new state of the art studio complex on the footprint of this old filmmaking institution, rich with tradition, history, and flavor. 

My first memory was seeing Batman and Robin, Batgirl, the Joker and Catwoman filming a scene together in front of the Plantation Building that was Desi Arnaz’s office. 

Superheroes graced this neighborhood. Superman flexed his muscles prior to the “dynamic duos.” The Green Hornet became not just a hit show, but part of this neighborhood. Kato, the character played by Bruce Lee, lived right behind the studio on Van Buren. Many of the kids exchanged greetings with him going back and forth from school.

Ince Boulevard runs a very short distance to be packed so full of iconic film history. It’s paved now, but in its day dirt roads led you inside. King Kong in 1933 could be seen being made from the sidewalks outside the studio. In 1938, that set was burned down in Gone With The Wind

Ince Boulevard was the hub of all the comings and goings on that night in film history. Neighbors old enough to have witnessed these memories share how every living creature that called the backlot home left in mass exodus during the Burning of Atlanta.

If you were at the main gate at the right time, anything could happen. Bob Crane was known to show many kids around Stage 13. Jim Nabors would hand out candy – cherry Life Savers! 

The four-way stop on Lucerne and Ince could at any given time have Andy Griffith’s squad car, the Batmobile, the Green Hornet’s Machine, or Catwoman in her furry ride.

Just another day on Ince!

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