History

Items that are historically significant in some way. They may be recent history or ancient history, pertinent to local history or something on a grander scale…

Video: Ernie McCray in His Own Words

October 19, 2021 by Ernie McCray

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The Famous ‘Shack’ of OB Founder, Charlie Collier

October 18, 2021 by Source

By Eric DuVall / Pt. Loma-OB Monthly / Oct. 18, 2021

Welcome to Collier’s Shack, friends and neighbors! Our guests are always encouraged to relax, put their feet up, recharge their batteries and enjoy our fresh air, balmy breezes and unparalleled views from our promontory high above the crashing surf of the mighty Pacific.

Doesn’t that sound great? It is certainly intended to. Come on, take a stroll in the garden or along the cliffs. Hop in the pool if you have a mind to. Our hospitality here is second to none, and the food isn’t bad either.

You’ve never heard of Collier’s Shack? That’s not surprising, as the shack has been gone from Ocean Beach for nearly 50 years.

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Occupy Wall Street Came to San Diego 10 Years Ago – Share Your Memories and Thoughts

October 6, 2021 by Frank Gormlie

It was ten years ago this week that Occupy Wall Street came to San Diego. Many San Diegans – and OBceans – were involved in the movement over the months, and the OB Rag gave extended, in-depth coverage.

So, this is an open thread where you, dear reader, can share any memories and / or thoughts of the Occupy movement.

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Mexicans Refuse to Forget the Tlatelolco Massacre During the October 1968 Olympics in Mexico City

October 5, 2021 by Source

In late 1968, Mexico was getting ready to host the Olympics. But social tensions were also simmering.

The 1968 attack on rallying protesters remains a potent symbol

By Leigh Thelmadatter / Mexico News Daily / October 2, 2021

They say that Mexicans have long memories. I am reminded of this idea at this time of year because that’s when the historic center, only a couple of kilometers from my apartment, becomes something of a fortress.

Today is October 2. For us foreigners, this is just another day, but for Mexicans, at least in Mexico City, it is emotional; this is the anniversary of the Tlatelolco Massacre. In 1968, Mexico was getting ready to host the Olympics.

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All The King’s Men in San Diego

October 4, 2021 by Source

By Mat Wahlstrom

By now most of you know about “the video“. (If you don’t, see the link to a capture of it that includes the subtitles so you can watch it without sound. Trust me, you’ll want to hit mute.)

Created for the amusement of those attending the $445-a-head “ToddTalk” fundraiser for the Downtown Partnership on September 22 but only made public by accident last week, it is a perfect distillation of the collegial corruption and smug entitlement exercised by the Establishment.

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Join OB Historical Society – The Lost and Found Balboa Park Gardens of Kate Sessions – Thurs. Sept. 16

September 16, 2021 by Source

Thurs. Sept. 16- The Lost and Found Balboa Park Gardens of Kate Sessions

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1960 Winter Olympics Site Changes Racist, Sexist Name

September 15, 2021 by Frank Gormlie

Once in a while, a news story about a change comes along that resonates, and here is one that does. I personally have been championing this specific change for some 20 years now. And it has finally happened.

The site of the 1960 Winter Olympics near Lake Tahoe is having its name changed. Its owners have decided that the old name that rhythms with “fall” is offensive to Indigenous women. The new name is Palisades Tahoe. Historically, it’s also been called Olympic Valley.

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Will Horrors of This Century Surpass Those of the Last?

September 15, 2021 by Source

By David Helvarg / The Hill / September 14, 2021

As a journalist covering wars, disasters and the environment, I’ve come to realize the existential threats we now face are not just bad people and governments committing mass murder; it is the ongoing elimination of the natural systems that sustain life on earth. The UN defines genocide as actions intended, “to destroy, in whole or in part, a national, ethnical, racial or religious group.”

But what if your actions are intended only to maintain the profitability of what until recently, was the largest industrial combine in human history?

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Ed Asner – American Socialist

August 31, 2021 by Source

By John Nichols / The Nation / August 31, 2021

“When we can discuss socialism rationally. It will be as if a heavy curtain has been lifted from man’s eyes.” Those were not the words of Karl Marx or Eugene Victor Debs, though either of those radical thinkers might well have uttered them.

Those were the words of Ed Asner, the actor who became a household name in the role of gruff but lovable Lou Grant, the boss at a TV station, in the 1970s TV comedy The Mary Tyler Moore Show. He then carried the character over, with a new job as a Los Angeles newspaper editor, to one of the most socially conscious programs in the history of television, the eponymous Lou Grant of the late 1970s and early ’80s.

When he died Sunday, at age 91,

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Democracy, the OB Town Council, and Grassroots Activism – 11 Years Ago

August 26, 2021 by Frank Gormlie

The following was originally published on August 26, 2010, exactly 11 years ago to the day. It was another time and another moment, but it’s still interesting, I think. Many of my friends on the OBTC are not aware of this ancient history – and I bear no grudges.

OB Town Council ballot annou Aug 2010

Here above is the official OB Town Council Elections announcement, released August 20, 2010. Notice my name, Frank Gormlie, listed as an official candidate.Last night at their packed public meeting, I pleaded with the Ocean Beach Town Council to allow me to remain a candidate on their ballot for the annual Board election which has just begun.

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OB Historical Society: ‘Postcards from the Past’ – Zoom Teleconference, Thurs., Aug.19

August 18, 2021 by Source

Go inside for link to Zoom teleconference

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7 Key Takeaways From First Day of Testimony at Hearing on January 6 Insurrection

July 28, 2021 by Source

Four officers spoke of the physical and psychological wounds they sustained during the Capitol riot — a day some thought they wouldn’t survive.

By Sara Boboltz / HuffPost / July 27, 2021

Tuesday marked the first meeting of the House select committee charged with investigating the Jan. 6 Capitol riot, with hours of emotional testimony about the mob of angry Donald Trump supporters who stormed the building and terrorized its occupants.

Four law enforcement officers delivered prepared remarks before the panel and answered questions: U.S. Capitol Police officer Harry Dunn and Sgt. Aquilino Gonell, and Metropolitan Police officers Michael Fanone and Daniel Hodges.

Each was on the front lines of the attack and spoke of injuries they sustained both mentally and physically. Each also showed varying degrees of emotion on the stand ? whether they were clearly holding back tears or reaching for a tissue.

Here are seven key takeaways from the hearing.

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The Ocean Beach Pier – Past, Present, and Future

July 27, 2021 by Source

By Geoff Page

The Ocean Beach Pier was the main subject of the Point Loma – Ocean Beach Democratic Club meeting Sunday, July 25. The club invited local OB historian and author Kathy Blavatt, mayor Gloria’s representative Kohta Zaiser, and this writer to provide information on the pier – past, present, and future.

When the discussion moved on to the pier, Kathy Blavatt was up first, providing history on, and pictures of, the pier and OB. Blavatt was a contributor to Ocean Beach, a history book by the Ocean Beach Historical Society, and wrote Ocean Beach Where Land And Water Meet. Blavatt’s account covered the waterfront of OB including the older buildings that were once there, the saltwater pool, and Wonderland Amusement Park. It is ironic that Wonderland was mentioned.

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50 Years Ago, Voting Age Lowered to 18 Due to Youth Protests

July 6, 2021 by Source

From today’s San Diego Union-Tribune

In July 1971, the 26th Amendment to the Constitution became law. The amendment, which had passed through Congress and been ratified by the states, lowered the voting age from 21 to 18.

An estimated 11 million young Americans between 18 and 21 became eligible under the new age limit.

The youth vote had a noticeable effect in San Diego.

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OB Historical Society Presents: Point Loma’s 1891 Lower Lighthouse – Thursday, June 17

June 17, 2021 by Source

Please join Ocean Beach Historical Society and Lighthouse volunteer and San Diego Historian Karen Scanlon, for a lavishly illustrated discussion of San Diego’s Operational Lighthouse, and the Six Lights that have watched over San Diego Bay over the years.

JOIN ZOOM MEETING, THURS. June 17, 2021 at 7 PM

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Portuguese Festa: Even in a Pandemic They Kept the ‘Spirit’ Alive

May 24, 2021 by Source

By Colleen O’Connor

Want to escape all the downbeat news and losses from the COVID-19 surges and chaos of this past year?

Then cheer on San Diego’s Portuguese community for sticking with a 700-year old tradition that commemorates Portugal’s Queen St. Isable, who (during a famine) promised the Holy Spirit to give her crown to the Church, “if sent a miracle, so my people will be relieved of their hunger.”

That miracle arrived, via ships sailing into the harbor, loaded with wheat and corn.

Thus, began the celebrated Festa do Espírito Santo (Feast of the Holy Spirit), with thanks and prayers to the Holy Spirit for interceding in times of danger or calamity.

The chaotic, COVID-19 ravaged years of 2020 and 2021, certainly count as one of those “times.”

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OB’s Pat and Susan James Celebrated by SOHO for Preserving Wisteria Cottage and Garden Party Tradition – Thursday, May 27

May 21, 2021 by Staff

Susan and Pat James of Ocean Beach are being celebrated this year by SOHO (Save Our Heritage Organization) for maintaining the tradition of the Wisteria Cottage and Garden Party. It’s SOHO’s 38th annual People In Preservation Awards with an online award presentation. Pat and Susan will be celebrated during the online ceremony on Thursday, May 27, at 4pm, during National Preservation Month.

Here’s SOHO’s description:

On Niagara Avenue in Ocean Beach, you will find a charming turn-of-the-20th-century cottage that plays host each spring to abundant blooms of colorful purple wisteria vines.

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OB Historical Society Presentation on Early San Diego Historian and Point Loman Winifred Davidson – Zoom Teleconference Thursday, May 20

May 19, 2021 by Source

Please join the Ocean Beach Historical Society in their presentation “Anyone Talked History, Today?” about early San Diego historian Winifred Davidson. The Zoom teleconference will be Thursday May 20, 2021 at 7 pm.

Early San Diego historian Winifred Davidson is described as the woman who discovered San Diego’s Lost History. Davidson was a poet, a musician, an educator, a journalist, one of one of San Diego’s first preservationists, and a longtime resident of Point Loma.

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America Not Racist?

May 17, 2021 by Ernie McCray

by Ernie McCray

To the premise at America is not racist
I can hear my mother say
“You could have fooled me”
with all that
sweeping and dusting
and mopping
she did at AT&T
with her Howard University
college degree,
around 66 years
after slavery,
Jim Crow
then at the helm
of Black folk’s
not mattering,
a complaint
still alive today
in the USA.

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Remembering May 4, 1970 Half a Century Later

May 4, 2021 by Frank Gormlie

May 4, 1970 for at least an entire generation of Americans will always be associated with the shootings of unarmed students by National Guardsmen on the campus of Kent State Ohio. Four students were killed – two having nothing to do with the protests, one was an ROTC cadet – and eleven were wounded – they will be remembered as a stain upon US history for eternity.

At the time, it shocked the nation – and visibly and viscerally divided the country, already fractured from more than a decade of the African-American movement for civil rights and a handful of years of the ever -increasing militancy of the anti-Vietnam war movement centered on college and university campuses. A deep cultural divide had also developed in America

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OB Historical Society Presents: ‘Women of the Presidio’ – Rare Stories of Colonial and Indigenous Women – Via Zoom Wed., April 28

April 28, 2021 by Source

Join the Ocean Beach Historical Society tonight, Wednesday, April 28, for a presentation by San Diego Historian and OB Favorite, Richard Carrico on “Women of the Presidio,” – stories rarely told of Colonial and Indigenous Women on the Frontier.

Wed. April 28 at 7 pm via Zoom Teleconference Lecture Link: Women of the Presidio

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Two Oscar Nominated Movies, and Why the Sixties Never Leave Us

April 22, 2021 by Source

By David Helvarg / The Hill / April 19, 2021

Two movies nominated for Academy Awards for both “Best Picture” and ”Original Screenplay” are “The Trial of the Chicago 7” and “Judas and the Black Messiah.” They capture an iconic time in our history in ways that few earlier cinematic efforts have managed with a couple of notable exceptions. These include Ava DuVernay’s “Selma” that revealed the tactical and strategic challenges of the 1960s civil rights movement for Martin Luther King and his fellow activists and Milos Forman’s “Hair” that explicitly connected the emergence of an exuberant hippie culture to the looming death culture of the Vietnam war.

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A History of OB People’s Food Store

April 14, 2021 by Source

By Eric DuVall / PtLoma – OB Monthly / April 13, 2021

It happened on Voltaire Street.

In the early decades of the community, Ocean Beach “boosters” touted Voltaire Street as an “avenue of opportunity” and Ocean Beach as the little town with two business districts.

And didn’t most of the folks who came out to OB in those days take the old street car down Voltaire Street to Wonderland Station? They sure did. And isn’t Voltaire the only “author street” that runs all the way to the beach? In fact, it is.

This is a uniquely OB-centric story, and moreover, every one of the events we are going to consider here happened right on Voltaire Street in Ocean Beach.

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America’s Founders Believed in Publick Education

March 31, 2021 by Source

By Thomas Ultican

The second and third presidents of the United States advocated powerfully for public education. Thomas Jefferson saw education as the cause for developing out of common farmers the enlightened citizenry who would take the rational action a successful republican democracy requires. Jefferson contended,

“The qualifications for self government are not innate. They are the result of habit and long training.”

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The Campaign for Collier Park, the Riot and the Aftermath

March 28, 2021 by Frank Gormlie

Today, March 28, is the 50th anniversary of the infamous Collier Park Riot – and the OB Rag continues our celebration and commemoration of the event. (On Friday, we covered the basics, and on Saturday we recounted how DC Collier’s landgrant gift to “the children” of the peninsula became “the incredible shrinking park” and how Collier is considered the “true founder” of Ocean Beach.)

Today, we discuss the actual day itself, half a century ago, the campaign and build-up to the day, its aftermath and significance for Ocean Beach in 2021.

And this is part of our continuing efforts to ensure that the Ocean Beach of the 21st century has not forsaken its very own history that helped to make the village what it is today. It’s definitely part of the story of our celebrated iconoclastic corner of the hippie counter- culture, a seaside town that has consciously and consistently set itself apart from mainstream San Diego.

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Charles Collier : the True Founder of Ocean Beach

March 27, 2021 by Frank Gormlie

There’s an historical character who walked across Ocean Beach’s stage over a hundred years ago, who had such an effect on the development of the community that he’s considered by many to be the “true founder” of Ocean Beach. And that is Col. David Charles Collier – who Collier Park up in northeast OB is named after.

Although Collier came later than other contenders for the title, he had as much to do with what turned into our little village by the sea as anyone else. And more so.

“Charlie” Collier’s Story

Ocean Beach and Col DC Collier first intersected in 1887, when young “Charlie” – then only 16 – bought one of Billy Carlson’s lots in Ocean Beach. The lot was close to the cliffs, over on Pacific Avenue – now Coronado Avenue – and Bacon Street. Of course, as a youth – in all probability – he was backed by his father, DC Collier, Senior – a lawyer and former judge from Colorado.

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How DC Collier’s Land Grant for Ocean Beach and Point Loma Became the ‘Incredible Shrinking Park’

March 27, 2021 by Frank Gormlie

This weekend, the OB Rag is celebrating the 50th anniversary of the infamous Collier Park Riot, which occurred on March 28, 1971. Our post for the occasion yesterday was just to cover the basics. Today, we use the historical event to delve more into the history of Collier Park itself and of DC Collier, who donated the land it sits on to the City.

The History of the DC Collier’s Park Landgrant of 1909

In 1909, David Charles “Colonel” Collier, a real estate developer who lived in Ocean Beach, gave a 60-acre parcel of land to the city as parkland “for the children” of the Point Loma peninsula.

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Sunday, March 28 Is the 50th Anniversary of the ‘Infamous’ Collier Park Riot

March 26, 2021 by Frank Gormlie

Sunday, March 28 will be the 50th anniversary of the Collier Park Riot. And the OB Rag remembers that moment each year at this time.

But whoa! Riot? What riot? Where is Collier Park and who is Collier? And why should we care? 50 years is a long time, dude.

What Was the Collier Park Riot?

The riot was a violent clash between young people in Ocean Beach protesting the Vietnam war and the sale of land meant for a park with San Diego police officers. During the afternoon of March 28, 1971, a peaceful crowd of hundreds of young OBceans and college students had gathered on a vacant hill site in northeast OB along Greene Street – on what was to become Collier Park – as part of an anti-Vietnam war protest and a ‘clean-up the park’ project.

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The Beloved Wisteria Garden of Ocean Beach

March 26, 2021 by Source

Wisteria Garden Goes Online!

By Kathy Blavatt

One of the best things about living in Southern California is that you can have a usable yard. Many locals in Ocean Beach and Point Loma are very proud of their yards. They use it as outdoor living space, edible gardens, socializing, working-out, sunbathing or relaxing in the shade, planting, playing with pets, and hundreds of other uses.

In addition, as COVID has proven, a garden can improve your health and mental state. Many gardeners these days are looking to personalize their gardens to their specific needs and wants.

Ocean Beach’s best-know garden is the historic Wisteria Garden on Niagara Avenue just up the block from Sunset Cliffs Blvd. on the southside.

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OB Walkabout: The Plague Year – One Year Ago

March 25, 2021 by Staff

by Joaquin Antique

In years past, the OB Rag‘s Walkabout series has tried to provide humorous and enlightening photo essays that capture the beauty and weirdness of Ocean Beach. On occasion it’s even been successful.

During the past week this reporter has walked the mean streets of Ocean Beach in search of elusive necessities such as hand sanitizer, rice, and prescription meds. In the process, a few photos have been taken that show some of our town’s varied responses to this horrible situation that has impacted every aspect of life in our community.

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