History Buff


Ghost Theaters on Colorado Blvd. (Part 3)

Ghost Theaters on Colorado Blvd. (Part 3)

It’s been awhile since we last looked at Colorado Boulevard’s “ghost theaters”—marquees and other relics along the street; skeletal reminders of Pasadena’s once-glorious picture palaces. In part 3 of our ongoing series, we examine the stories behind three more of these vanished movie houses. Tower Theater (1930-1952) – 114 E. Colorado Blvd. A parking lot [...]

FDR: Speech, Worship, Want, Fear

FDR: Speech, Worship, Want, Fear

“Freedom from Want” is one in a series of Four Freedoms oil paintings created in 1943 by Norman Rockwell and made famous when they were printed in the Saturday Evening Post that same year. He was inspired to paint the series based on President Franklin Delano Roosevelt‘s State of the Union speech on Jan. 6, 1941, one month after the U.S. entered [...]

Mystery History No. 21

Mystery History No. 21

Where are we? And what’s happening? These photos were shot in July 1978. The photo to the right shows boxing trainer and coach Canto Robledo very animated as his gives advice and (below) shouts instructions to his fighter in the ring.           Canto Robledo was born in 1913 in Tyron, New [...]

Mrs. Fenyes and the Movies (Part 3 of 4): Warner’s Egyptian Theater

Mrs. Fenyes and the Movies (Part 3 of 4): Warner’s Egyptian Theater

By Sheryl Peters, Pasadena Museum of History docent, researcher, and educator. Warner’s Egyptian Theater opened in Pasadena, California on May 6, 1925 as a combination vaudeville, legitimate theater, and movie house.  It offered the latest feature films, newsreels and comedies, plus first rate vaudeville acts between the pictures.  Newspaper articles promoting a gala opening emphasized [...]

History Mystery No. 20

History Mystery No. 20

What’s this and where are we? In this undated photo, presumably shot in the late 1890s, a group on an outing stops at Devil’s Gate. There’s not much more than a puddle of water in the photo. Here’s the same location with much more water, probably shot in winter or spring.     Benjamin Eaton [...]

Riding the Birds in South Pas

Riding the Birds in South Pas

The South Pasadena Public Library staff has spent years digitalizing historical photos of this small town, south of big sister Pasadena, which are now on view to the public at Online Archive California. Perusing a few of the pics, we came across the picture to the right… The Cawston Ostrich Farm was located in the [...]

Mystery History No. 19

Mystery History No. 19

Where are we and what’s happening? In the photo to the right, an unidentified man waves farewell just before dawn on March 23, 1942, after being processed at the Rose Bowl Stadium for residency at the Manzanar internment camp. The stadium, Santa Anita Racetrack in Arcadia and the Fairplex in Pomona were among the processing centers and [...]

Mystery History No. 18

Mystery History No. 18

What’s happening here? With apologies for the morbidity, in the photo to the right, City of Pasadena public safety personnel look over the rubble left behind after a grandstand collapsed during the Rose Parade on Jan. 1, 1926. Eight spectators died. It was a terrible tragedy that, thanks to resulting regulations for careful construction and inspection [...]

Mrs. Fenyes and the Movies (Part 2 of 4): The Mission Theater

Mrs. Fenyes and the Movies (Part 2 of 4): The Mission Theater

By Sheryl Peters, Pasadena Museum of History docent, researcher, and educator Clune’s Broadway Theater, built by William (Billy) Clune on Eva Fenyes’ property at 528 South Broadway in Los Angeles, opened in October 1910. Just months later, in March of 1911, Clune’s Pasadena Theater opened at 61 West Colorado Street. While Eva did not own [...]

City Hall Historic Photos

City Hall Historic Photos

I think this must have been shot from the top of All Saints. That’s the St. Andrew’s Church tower in the background, mid-right. I’m not sure what the church is on the far right. Maybe Pasadena Congregational at the southeast corner of Los Robles and Walnut? Anybody have a better guess? No hard hats, no [...]

Maude Woods - Opening October 22nd in Pasadena

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Camelot and Vine

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