An ARC Update

by Martha and Sol Sigall, Vice President, Archives


The ARC has been buzzing with activity – especially during Fiesta La Ballona 2008!

Our guests offered lots of positive comments, and we were delighted to see several busy members of the Fiesta Committee stop by. Of course, having our own CCHS VP, Programs, Fred Yglesias stationed at the Beer Garden did not hurt!

We welcomed Fiesta-goers on both days, Saturday and Sunday, August 23-24, and our guest book shows it. Stu’s surprise home footage from a very early Fiesta was a wonderful addition – even if his dad cut off his mother’s head in a few of the shots! Our Costume Chair, Louise Coffey-Webb, displayed a 1951 Fiesta Princess costume on one of our new mannequins, and two display cases were dedicated to this special Fiesta display. And, we sold numerous CCHS items and took several orders for our new, very well-received umbrella.


Huge “thank yous” to all the volunteers who help at the ARC regularly, attended the computer training class and who work at special events like the Fiesta: Carole Gustin, Lydia Spiegelman, Lou and Jeannette Block, Tami Eskridge, Jeanne Conklin, Cathy Zermeno, Fred Yglesias, Christina Machado-Essex, Stu Freeman, Louise Coffey-Webb, Julie Lugo Cerra, Steve Rose, Steve Newton, Doug Newton, Shana Newton, Vivian Matheson, Joy Jacobs, Karen Coyle and Winston Gieseke.


A new volunteer who has proven to be invaluable is Winston Gieseke. Winston has done a superb job with our new computer software, designing a template just for our purposes, with input from our members. We now have the ability to input all the information on items in our collection, with many fields and up to three pictures for each entry. In addition, Winston taught an introductory class for committee members who are eager to help – and let us know if you have time to join us.

We have a new display case donated by Steve Newton. Thanks, Steve, for all your work in refurbishing the case. It was especially useful for the Fiesta buttons and other items that fit well in a shallow case – something we really needed. Former CCHS Treasurer, Lynn Baril, who has retired and moved to Michigan, donated a number of office items, including a first-aid kit for the ARC before she left. Thanks, Lynn.

Remember, we are open the first and third Saturdays from 1-3 pm and by appointment. Please come in – and bring your friends!

ARC Update Summer 2008

An ARC Update .….

by Martha and Sol Sigall, Vice President, Archives


While it continues to make progress, we are now open to our members and the community on the first and third Saturdays of the month from 1pm to 3pm, and also by appointment. So, please come by.

April’s CCHS General Meeting featured Leith Adams, Chief Archivist at the Warner Bros. Museum, as our guest speaker. His presentation on “The Art of Archiving” was so very interesting and informative.

Leith spoke of being a “bone collector” – collecting everything while trying to throw the “crap” away! And it’s not always easy to know what historians and archivists may need in the future, though he tries to reassess the collection every 5 years.

Leith first came in contact with the Warner Bros. “documented” history while attending USC where he was hired in the cataloging of the WB Collection (documents & photos). The collection was donated to the School of Cinema-Television at USC in 1977.

While he personally collects movie posters, the Warner Bros. collection he oversees includes all kinds of memorabilia, including movie sets, marketing programs, written and acting scripts, and other ancillary items relating to all the arts of filmmaking.

The archives are meant to bring the process of making a film and the people involved to life for today’s audiences. He cited such items as letters from Ronald Reagan and Bette Davis to Jack Warner as wonderful “stories” of their times.

After a lively question-and-answer session, the ARC was opened for all in attendance to visit – and we received many positive comments.

Our Historical Society observed Historical Preservation Month early in May with a festive event that took place at the Culver Hotel and in the suite that was once Harry Culver’s office. Many Culver residents attended the May 2nd event.

One of those people was Mike Castleman who brought his young son, Logan, who showed so much interest in our Historical Society and asked questions of all of us. When he went back to school and Linwood Howe Elementary, he reported what he had learned to his third-grade teacher, Coco Kita. She, in turn, told the other three third grade teachers what she had learned from Logan. All the teachers thought it would be fitting to arrange a field trip to our ARC. Stuart Freeman, our President, and Julie Lugo Cerra, our Historian offered to arrange it as soon as possible.

Each class was divided in half. One group game into the ARC for a Power Point presentation by Julie which showed the history of Culver City. Meanwhile, the other group was taken on a tour led by Stu Freeman, Carol Gustin, and Cathy Zermeno of the Veteran’s Building and historic markers surrounding it. Then, both groups changed places.

Having students and community people visit makes our ARC so worthwhile. It is our aim and hope to have more events like these on a continuing basis.


Costumes Chair Louis Coffey-Webb and her intern Karen Contreras having been working tirelessly, readying the exhibit of the costumes we have. With the assistance of film historian and CCHS member Marc Wanamaker, they have made wonderful progress in identifying the “what/who/when” of these vintage treasures.

Even though our ARC is currently a work-in-progress, we feel we are taking positive strides forward. We are especially grateful for all of the help we have received from the City of Culver City. The ARC is definitely becoming the pride of the City!


An ARC Update .….

by Martha & Sol Sigall, Vice President, Archives


It will be our goal to continue the impressive progress that Robin Turner made during her term as Vice President, Archives. She and her committee accomplished so much – we want to keep the momentum going!

We especially appreciate Cathy Zermeno, our past President, who, as soon as it was possible, opened up the ARC each week and worked tirelessly to catalogue so much of the historic items.

Our thanks to many of our members who have already signed up to volunteer on the Archives Committee. We will be calling on you for your help very soon, and establish specific days and times the ARC will be open for the work of cataloging, labeling, etc.

A special thank-you to Louise Coffey-Webb, our Costumes Chair, and her wonderful intern, Karla Contreras, who have done so much to care for and exhibit costumes in our display cases. We also want to thank the City of Culver City who came to our aid when we needed to replace many of the boxes that hold these rare and precious costumes.

A tremendously big “THANK YOU” to Julie Lugo Cerra, our Culver City Historian, who has been such an integral part of our Archives Resource Center since the beginning and continues supporting us every step of the way. And, we couldn’t be where we are now without our dear Fred Yglesias who is always there with a helping hand – he’s simply great!

When our Culver City Historical Society members and the public attend the April 16th General Membership Meeting, we hope they will be pleased with the progress that has already been made – and we welcome your thoughts and suggestions to our ARC better still!