History Buff


Mystery History No. 13

Mystery History No. 13

Where are we? And what’s happening? In this 1915 photo, Charlie Murray, Vivian Edwards, and cast stand in front of the Old Mill at Pasadena’s Busch Gardens in the Arroyo Seco for a scene in the film Hogan’s Aristocratic Dream. The Old Mill still stands, although it is now on private property. Mack Sennett brought […]

Mystery History No. 12

Mystery History No. 12

What is this? Where are we? In this 1910 photo, a float passes by during the Shriners Electric Parade, which took place in Pasadena that year because the annual Shriners National Conclave was here. Other years, it was everywhere from New York to L.A. Thousands of incandescent bulbs were used to outline the designs of […]

Watercolor Sketches

Watercolor Sketches

Watercolor Sketches by Eva Scott Fenyes (1849-1930) — Early 1906 In early 1906 in Pasadena, California, Eva Scott Fenyes was planning her second Orange Grove Avenue mansion; and, being a woman who immersed herself in her building projects, she stayed close to home where she could oversee the design of her new domestic vision. For […]

When City Hall Was a Hole in the Ground

When City Hall Was a Hole in the Ground

          Here are historic photos from the mid-1920s when our beloved Pasadena City Hall was under construction. Before the digging began: Parking Day or Nite (but not for much longer!): When the land was still being cleared:   They’re off and running: All Saints Church peeking over the palms: Note all […]

Mystery History No.11

Mystery History No.11

Where are we? What’s happening? In this 1934 photo, demolition of the Horace Mann building at Pasadena High School is in full swing where Pasadena City College stands today. There were orange groves and the old Grant School at the 18-acre stie when construction of the PHS campus began, and the campus began to take […]

When Garfield Promenade Was Cabrillo Place

When Garfield Promenade Was Cabrillo Place

Stand at the intersection of Garfield Avenue and East Colorado Boulevard. Now face south looking into the Paseo Colorado toward the Pasadena Civic Auditorium. The shopping lane before you, which leads to a sunny plaza and proceeds to an impressively wide Green Street crosswalk, is the Garfield Promenade. In the early 20th century this relatively […]

The Bordeaux That Nearly Was

The Bordeaux That Nearly Was

When we think of California wine today, we think of Napa, Sonoma and the Santa Ynez Valley, but from the 1850s until the 1880s, the San Gabriel Valley was by far the largest wine-producing region in the state. Rows of grapes once stretched for thousands of acres in what is now Pasadena, South Pasadena, San […]

Ann Erdman: Coming to Terms

Ann Erdman: Coming to Terms

Many of my ancestors can be found in the six-volume set of books titled Notable Southern Families. That’s great news for anyone doing genealogy research because the books include the begats as well as American Revolution, War of 1812, and Civil War information about hundreds upon hundreds of people. The reason so many of my […]

Mystery History No. 10

Mystery History No. 10

What is this? And where are we? In this December 1951 photo, able-bodied Pasadena Police Officer Robert Hultman uses a wheelchair as he marks car tires while smelling the lovely aroma of iconic Pasadena roses. The wheelchair kept him low to the ground so he didn’t have to bend up and down all the time. […]

Autos and Accidents with Mrs. Fenyes

Autos and Accidents with Mrs. Fenyes

Eva fenyes was driving her Waverly Electric automobile along South Raymond Avenue when the accident occured. Perhaps she was preoccupied with thoughts of building her new mansion, or perhaps she was feeling unwell as she often did. Or maybe she was otherwise distracted. After all, that new novel was so intriguing. The ensuing newspaper article […]

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Maude Woods - Opening October 22nd in Pasadena

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Camelot and Vine

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