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Wednesday, March 30, 2016

¡Murales Rebeldes!: Contested Chicana/o Public Art

Barbara Carrasco, L.A. History: A Mexican Perspective (1981)
Today the J. Paul Getty Foundation announced that 43 museums and cultural institutions from Santa Barbara to San Diego will be creating exhibitions focused on Latin American and Latino art in dialogue with Los Angeles. The program—Pacific Standard Time: LA/LA—will take place in the fall of next year, and we are very pleased to announce that we are participating in this collaboration of arts institutions in Southern California!

In partnership with LA Plaza de Cultura y Artes, a cultural center focused on the Mexican-American experience in Los Angeles and Southern California, CHS will present ¡Murales Rebeldes!: Contested Chicana/o Public Art. The exhibition will look at the way in which Chicana/o murals in the greater Los Angeles area have been contested, challenged, censored, and even destroyed.

Murals became an essential form of artist response and public voice during el movimiento/the Chicano movement of the 1960s and 1970s, and particularly after the Chicano Moratorium’s formation in 1968 and the powerful march in East Los Angeles in 1970. .Murals were a means of expressing both pride and frustration at a time when other channels of communication were limited for the Mexican-American community.

The exhibition will explore murals by Barbara Carrasco, Roberto Chavez, Sergio O’Cadiz, among others. Through photography of the murals, sketches, related art works, and ephemera, the exhibition will tell the story of the mural from its genesis to its end.

Mexican-American artists developed imagery to communicate their struggles, assert their rights as citizens, and as author and co-curator Guisela Latorre writes in Walls of Empowerment, “aid in the formation of a Chicana/o nationalist identity.” While asserting cultural identity via this evolving visual vocabulary, artists also used murals as public platforms to protest against the injustices of institutionalized racism, including police brutality, educational inequality, inferior working conditions, and persisting colonial legacies.

It is difficult to underestimate the personal, political, and artistic significance of the creation of murals in the vast Los Angeles region, as LA has proven fertile ground for thousands of murals. Chicana/o murals have often been sites of controversy. The ways in which their creators provoke the dominant cultural norm and challenge the assumed historic narrative have often resulted in the desecration, whitewashing, or destruction of these works of art. Outright neglect and mistreatment of murals, as well as dismissal of their artistic and historical value, also threaten the survival of these works.

In this exhibition in the historic heart of Los Angeles, LA Plaza and CHS will examine the iconography, content, and artistic strategies of key Los Angeles area Chicana/o murals that have made others uncomfortable to the point of provoking a contrary response, delving into the murals’ complicated creation and subsequent disturbing history of censorship.

¡Murales Rebeldes!: Contested Chicana/o Public Art will open on September 4, 2017  and will be on view through January 29, 2018 at LA Plaza de Cultura y Artes.

Stay tuned for updates on this exciting project!

Jessica Hough
Director of Exhibitions

Tuesday, March 29, 2016

Type Tuesday - Japan Paper Company

Today we feature paper samples from the Japan Paper Company of New York and Philadelphia. Each of these samples are printed on paper that mimics the grainy  look of the wood furniture promoted.


Booklet printed on Japanese Wood Veneer, from the Japan Paper Company

Booklet printed on Japanese Wood Veneer, No. 55, from the Japan Paper Company

More beautiful ephemera from the Japan Paper Company can be found in our Kemble Ephemera Collection.

Jaime Henderson

Friday, March 25, 2016

A Mirror of Us: CHS Celebrates the National Park Service Centennial

Joshua Tree National Park

Joshua Tree National Monument pamphlet (detail), date unknownCalifornia Historical Society
This summer, on August 25, the National Park Service turns 100 years old. Over the course of this centennial year, the California Historical Society will celebrate the state’s significant contribution to “America’s best idea” by digging into our collections and sharing what we find with you.

From Redwood National Park in the north to Joshua Tree in the south, California’s parks are as varied and diverse as the population of the Golden State itself. The oldest, Yosemite, was established in 1890; the youngest, Pinnacles, graduated from monument to park just three years ago, on January 10, 2013.

Each California park has its own kind of beauty and all are a reflection of the society into which they were born.
At Mirror Lake, Yosemite Valley, 1911
California Historical Society
In other words, both literally—as in the photograph above—and figuratively, they are a mirror of us. We hope you enjoy the reflection. 

Springtime in Joshua Tree

Yucca Blossom in Joshua Tree, date unknown
California Historical Society/USC Special Collections
Mild and beautiful weather this time of year makes California’s desert parks a favorite destination for a spring getaway. Joshua Tree National Park, located in both San Bernardino and Riverside Counties, is a favorite destination. By summertime, visitors eschew the southern deserts for places like Redwood National Park, Yosemite, or Mt. Lassen.

Joshua Tree National Monument California, c. 1966
California Historical Society
This time of year, however, wildflowers abound. Between February and late March, Joshua Trees produce creamy white orchid-like blossoms, sometimes referred to as “candles.” In rainier years—as this one may prove to be—the vistas of flowering trees can be, along with a variety of other wildflowers, in the words of one author, “extraordinary.” Spring is also a great time to hike, rock climb, and learn more about the human history of this challenging place.

Yucca in Blossom (Candlestick of the Lord, or Spanish Bayonet), c. 1920
California Historical Society/USC Special Collections
The Joshua Tree of the eponymous park is actually a member of the yucca family, Yucca brevifolia. Its dramatic and stark appearance has been cause for both religious inspiration and harsh botanical critique. Named, supposedly, by optimistic Mormon settlers, the trees brought to mind the upstretched arms of the biblical Joshua, leading the seekers to their promised land. The frontiersman, military leader, and U.S. Senator John Charles Frémont, on the other hand, described them as, “the most repulsive tree in the vegetable kingdom.”

Fortunately, few seemed to have listened to Frémont, and people instead came to appreciate the great diversity of plant and animal life to be found in the park’s 800,000 acres. Joshua Tree became a National Monument in 1936 and a National Park in 1994.

Joshua Tree National Monument, 1966
California Historical Society
Beside the Joshua Trees, the park’s other dominant features are huge rocks and boulders, favorites of rock climbers. These hunks of Monzogranite also illustrate one of the most surprising facts about Joshua Tree: that the most critical force of nature influencing the park’s geology is water. Although rainfall amounts to less than 10 inches per year, this was not always the case.

The rock, which was formed underground from molten liquid, developed its current appearance over time as water infused with clay seeped over the rectangular shaped structures “melting” their sharp edges, not unlike water over an ice cube. As ancient flash floods eroded the surface soil, the rocks—sometimes piled atop one another—became exposed to view. The complex geologic process called the “joint system,” visible in some formations, can be seen at the park’s Split Rock site, among others.

Picnic Party at Split Rock, Joshua Tree National Monument, c. 1941
California Historical Society
Relics of the human impact on Joshua Tree can be found in both the landscape and the park’s museum. Some of the most visible evidence exists in the numerous mines scattered throughout the park, as well as the Desert Queen Ranch (later known as Keys Ranch, the working family ranch of Bill and Frances Keys and their seven children.

Bill Keys (born George Barth) was first employed on the Desert Queen Ranch in 1910, and took the ranch over in 1912. The ranch had been a way station for cattle drives on the trail from Arizona and New Mexico to the California coast since 1879. The hardy and very handy Keys family built numerous dwellings and out buildings—even a dam; had an extensive truck garden; and mined and crushed rock for ore. They were among many who also kept cattle in the park, as evidenced by the two Keys family brands: one in the “shape” of a key and the other a “DQ” for Desert Queen. (Three National Park Service videos explore the lives of these sturdy souls, and can be found in the link below.)

Brands, Joshua Tree National Monument, 1975
California Historical Society
Joshua Tree likely owes the preservation of its lands and status as a National Park to Minerva Hamilton Hoyt. A transplant to southern California from Mississippi, Hoyt fell in love with the desert environment and established the International Deserts Conservation League in 1930 when she felt the deserts were coming under increasing threat, especially from the automobile. She was later tapped by Frederick Law Olmsted, Jr. to serve on a California state commission where she recommended park status not only for Joshua Tree, but for Death Valley and the Anza-Borrego Desert as well. It was Hoyt who lobbied Franklin Delano Roosevelt to establish Joshua Tree National Monument in 1936.

So this spring, when the air is balmy and clear, and “candles” light up the Joshua Trees, decide for yourself if John Frémont had it wrong and if, instead, the sturdy and sublimely beautiful Joshua Trees beckon you to a promised land.

Alison Moore
Strategic Projects Liaison


  • Lucille Weight, Cattle Brands of the Joshua tree National Monument Region and San Gorgonio Pass (Joshua Tree Natural History Association and National Park Service, 1975),

Learn more about the NPS Centennial Initiative

Friday, March 18, 2016

Lawrence Halprin: Landscape Architecture in Israel

Lawrence Halprin, Self-Portrait before Leaving Israel, 1998
Courtesy of Anna Halprin
As a teenager, the land of Israel captivated Lawrence Halprin (1916–2009). In 1929, at 13, he marked the ritual transition into Jewish adulthood and responsibility (bar mitzvah) in Jerusalem (then British-governed Palestine Mandate), where he and his family were living at the time. In 1933, at 17, he returned there for two years. 

During this time, Halprin joined a group of pioneer men and women involved in the utopian kibbutz movement, which established collective, socialist societies (kibbutzim, Hebrew for “gatherings”) based on agriculture.

Tuesday, March 15, 2016

Naming Yosemite

Camp Curry, date unknown
California Historical Society
Times change—and names change with them. Today the National Park Service is in litigation over concessionaire Delaware North’s renaming of historic properties in Yosemite National Park. Each of these names—The Ahwahnee, Curry Village, the Wawona Hotel, Yosemite Lodge at the Falls, and Badger Ski Pass Area—has historic meaning to the park and to millions of visitors. 

Naming Yosemite dates to 1851. In that year Lafayette H. Bunnell, a member of the Mariposa Battalion—which “discovered” Yosemite Valley when it was sent to forcibly remove the native population from the area—suggested they call the site “Yosemite” after what he thought was the name for the local Indians.

James Hutchings, In the Heart of the Sierra
Published Oakland, California: Pacific Press Publishing House, 1888

California Historical Society
The name stuck, but the translation changed over time: first to “a full-grown grizzly bear” from the northern and central Miwok dialect and as recently as the 1960s to “some of them are killers,” a southern Miwok description of the Paiute tribe. 

Below we remember Yosemite’s historic names—side-by-side with the new—with images of these beloved places from the California Historical Society Collections.

The Ahwahnee / Majestic Yosemite Hotel
The Ahwahnee (detail), pamphlet, 1970
California Historical Society
The human history of Yosemite began about 6,000 years ago, when indigenous populations came to the Yosemite Valley. By the beginning of the nineteenth century, the Ahwahneechee tribe had lived there for generations with little contact with non-natives. They called the valley Ahwahnee. 

As Kerry Tremain, creator of the award-winning eBook Yosemite: A Storied Landscape, has observed, the architects and artists who designed the Ahwahnee Hotel, built in 1927, “reflected the values of their social set, which stressed the conservation of nature and a broader acceptance and curiosity toward other cultures.” Taking the Ahwahneechee’s name for Yosemite Valley, The Ahwahnee also honors the Native American culture in its interior, with native-inspired mosaics and basket designs.

The Ahwahnee: Situated in the Yosemite National Park, pamphlet, date unknown
California Historical Society
Curry Village / Half Dome Village

Camp Curry, date unknown
California Historical Society
In June 1899 former Indiana schoolteachers David and Jenny “Mother” Curry opened Camp Curry, Yosemite’s first affordable lodging. For $2 a day, visitors were provided with food and lodging in one of the camp’s seven tents. 

As daughter Mary Curry Tressider recalled, “The seven tents grew during the first season to twenty-five and the number of guests reached almost three hundred, which was considered a very good beginning. . . . Each guest seemed to take a personal interest in the young concern and it was by their personal recommendations to their friends that Camp Curry—as the camp came to be called by its neighbors—had its immediate and steady growth.”

Yosemite Road Guide, 1923, and Camp Curry brochure, date unknownCalifornia Historical Society
In 1970 Camp Curry changed its name to Curry Village. Today’s complex includes cabins, lodge, store, dining facilities, and post office.

Wawona Hotel / Big Trees Lodge
George Fiske, Wawona Hotel, Wawona, Mariposa Co. Cal., date unknown
California Historical Society

In early 1856, Galen Clark, who later became Yosemite’s first Guardian, built a small cabin on the west end of a meadow near the Merced River’s South Fork. The cabin, called Clark’s Station, soon attracted travelers to the region. Later known as Clark and Moore’s (1870) and Big Tree Station (1875), the lodging was eventually named Wawona, from the Southern Miwok name for the Evening Primrose, Wawo’na, whose seeds were part of the native diet.

Wawona Hotel Brochure, 1923
California Historical Society
From its inception, the Wawona, a Victorian-era lodge at Yosemite’s southern entrance, nourished our national and regional histories. Thomas Hill, a nationally famous landscape painter, established a studio there, which he ran during the summers from 1886 to his death in 1908. Regionally, the hotel played a significant role in the areas of transportation (routes into the part), commerce (as a major resort hotel), and conservation (through Galen Clark’s Guardianship).

Yosemite Lodge at the Falls / Yosemite Valley Lodge
Yosemite Lodge, pamphlet, date unknown
California Historical Society
The history of Yosemite Lodge at the Falls begins in the early 1900s, when the U.S. Cavalry, acting as the park’s rangers, established a post in Yosemite Valley in 1906. From Camp Yosemite they administered the supervision and protection of the park. To accommodate the influx of visitors—many of them anticipated for San Francisco’s 1915 World’s Fair—in 1915 the army camp was converted to lodging facilities. The camp’s largest building, Fort Yosemite, became Yosemite Lodge, a complex of cabins and tents. 

By 1916, the army had been relieved of its stewardship. That year, Yosemite was incorporated into the newly established National Park Service. In the early 1920s, the Yosemite Park and Curry Co. became the park’s concessionaire, and in 1956 The Lodge, as many called it, was renovated, enhanced by a gift shop, post office, swimming pool, grill, and cafeteria. A flood in 1997 destroyed half the original buildings and led to a redesign of the complex. In the mid-2000s, the Lodge was renamed Yosemite Lodge at the Falls to capitalize on its proximity to Yosemite Falls, the park’s highest waterfall and one of its key attractions.

Badger Pass Ski Area / Yosemite Ski & Snowboard Area
Ski Instructor Nick Fiore and an Advanced Class on a Ski School Slope, with Badger Pass Ski House in the Background, date unknown
California Historical Society
At the south rim of Yosemite Valley along Glacier Point Road is the Badger Pass Ski Area, a 282-acre winter sports facility. Conifers line its north-facing mountain peaks and lead to a protected meadow below. These features brought about the area’s establishment as a winter recreational location and its historic significance as one of California’s earliest developed downhill ski areas. 

Allegedly named by a stage coach driver who saw a badger while resting his horses at the pass, Badger Pass Ski Area became home to the Yosemite Ski School (established in 1928) in 1935, when a ski lodge also was erected on the site.

Yosemite Winter Sports at Yosemite Ski School, Badger Pass, date unknownCalifornia Historical Society

From the 1930s through the 1950s, Badger Pass Ski Area was a center of professional and amateur downhill ski competitions in California and the United States. Today it is one of three ski areas with lifts operating in a National Park, providing both downhill and snowboarding activities. 

Here at CHS headquarters in the former enclave known as Yerba Buena we understand that names change—and times change with them.

Shelly Kale
Publications and Strategic Projects Manager


From the California Historical Society and 36 Views, with the Yosemite Conservancy
The Award-Winning eBook Yosemite: A Storied Landscape

Cover art by Thomas Killion
Winner of the Digital Book Award’s Best Cover Design

Yosemite: A Storied Landscape

Created by Kerry Tremain of the award-winning digital publisher 36 Views

Published in conjunction with the exhibition Yosemite: A Storied Landscape (June 29, 2014 – January 25, 2015), this enhanced eBook tells stories of Yosemite in words, pictures, videos, and interactive graphics and games that restore freshness, energy, fun, and intimacy to one of the most beloved places on earth. Part of the celebration of the 150th anniversary of the Yosemite Grant—the landmark preservation legislation that created the park—Yosemite: A Storied Landscape is filled with utterly surprising, funny, poignant, tragic, and revealing tales from America's first park.

For more information about the eBook and how to purchase it, visit and

Twenty percent of your purchase goes to support the Yosemite Conservancy.

CHS members: download free eBook,

Nancy Reagan (1921–2016)

The California Historical Society joins the nation in celebrating the life of the First Lady of the United States (1981–89) and the First Lady of California (1967–75).

Nancy Reagan, c. 1968 
California Historical Society

Type Tuesday - General Paper Company, San Francisco

The South of Market (SOMA) neighborhood of San Francisco was historically home to light industry, including printing, type founding and paper making and distribution. One such business was the General Paper Company, located at 568-576 Howard Street. This location is currently included in the construction of the new Transbay Center redevelopment area. 

Business card, General Paper Company, Kemble Ephemera

In 1927 General Paper Company offered its discriminating customers of fine paper products this extraordinary booklet created and issued by the Whiting-Plover Paper Company of Stevens Point, Wisconsin, manufacturers of Artesian Bond paper. 

The above and the following images are from The Manufacture and Use of Bond Papers, available in the General Paper Company file of the Kemble Ephemera Collection

The booklet includes beautiful illustrations depicting the history of paper making and celebrates the virtues of Whiting-Plover's Artesian Bond (the secret is in the crystal clear waters of Wisconsin's rivers!)

Jaime Henderson

Thursday, March 10, 2016

Dried Marsh Mud

Dried Marsh Mud, 1979, California Tomorrow Records, California Historical Society, MS 3641_001
Dried and cracked earth, brown lawns, low reservoir levels, mandatory water rationing: these are some of the consequences of California’s record-breaking drought, now in its fifth year. But they also once described the devastating drought of 1976 and 1977, “the worst in the state’s history,” as Ronald B. Robie, director of the state’s Department of Water Resources, wrote in 1978. (1)

That historic drought ushered in many of the water conservation policies we know today. As consumers statewide embraced rigorous and widespread urban water conservation—refraining from watering their lawns, washing their cars, and flushing their toilets—then Governor Edmund G. (Jerry) Brown Jr. commissioned the publication of a water atlas to help explain the state’s complex water systems.

Monday, March 7, 2016

Living Lightly on the Land
Lawrence Halprin and The Sea Ranch

Charles Birnbaum (Photographer), The Sea Ranch, 2008
Courtesy of Charles Birnbaum/The Cultural Landscape Foundation

Today The Sea Ranch on California’s Sonoma coast is known as a rustic community where people live in harmony with their environment. In 2005, landscape architect Lawrence Halprin—who developed The Sea Ranch master plan in the early 1960s—noted that wherever he went, people were eager to hear about The Sea Ranch as “a shining emblem of what a community can become.” “All over the world the fact of The Sea Ranch has changed the attitude and the vision of how you can design and build a community in which people can live and be nurtured by a landscape…architecture itself has been changed by design here.”

Landscape Architect Lawrence Halprin (1916–2009), c. 1960s
Courtesy of Eichler Network
In addition to its connection to the coastal landscape, the goal of Halprin’s master plan was to create a “utopian” community, inhabited by a cross-section of society. Greatly inspired by the communal life he’d experienced during three years spent in Israel, Halprin sought to create “a collective—very similar to being on a kibbutz.” At The Sea Ranch people would live individually as families, but in this very isolated and rugged environment they would spend significant time together as a community. The places Halprin most admired around the world—Italian hill towns, rugged Swiss mountain communities, which he used as models for The Sea Ranch—had an “organic wholeness,” a “simplicity” and, most importantly a “memorable and unified personality.”

Lawrence Halprin, Sea Ranch Ecoscore, c. 1968
Courtesy Lawrence Halprin Collection, the Architectural Archives, University of Pennsylvania
In preparation for creating the master plan, Lawrence Halprin spent much time on the land observing the landscape, animals, vegetation, and weather. He took his family camping there and made detailed studies of local geology, flora and fauna, the ever-present wind, and the sounds of the ocean. “I wanted to plan a unique community based on ecological principles of design and immersed in nature.”

Lawrence Halprin, Sea Ranch House, c. 1980
Courtesy of the Halprin Family Archive and Edward Cella Art + Architecture
Charles Birnbaum (Photographer), The Sea Ranch, 2008
Courtesy of Charles Birnbaum/The Cultural Landscape Foundation
The design aesthetic for Halprin, developer and architect Al Boeke, and fellow architects Joseph Esherick, Charles Moore, William Turnbull, Jr., Richard Whittaker, Don Carter, Richard Reynolds, and Donlyn Lyndon, was to maintain a “regional character” for the buildings, inspired by the natural, cultural, and built environments of the Sonoma County coast. Houses and other structures at The Sea Ranch would not compete with their natural surroundings—no perimeter fences would separate properties and only indigenous vegetation would be planted around homes. Roof lines were designed to deflect the wind and not stand apart from the structures. Mundane elements of everyday life such as garbage cans and cars would be hidden from view. Halprin’s goal, as he noted in The Sea Ranch: Diary of an Idea, was not to “destroy the very reason [that] people come here.” As Carl Solander writes in Architecture Boston, “The great achievement of Sea Ranch is its concealment of architectural vicissitudes within nature.”

Lawrence Halprin, Approach to Yosemite Falls, c. 2005
Courtesy of
In addition to the rugged coastal community of The Sea Ranch, Lawrence Halprin’s career was also noted for its impact on urban environments. Some of his best known designs include the FDR Memorial in Washington, D.C., the cascading falls of the Ira Keller fountain in Portland, Oregon, Los Angeles’ Bunker Hill Steps, and San Francisco’s Letterman Center, Ghirardelli Square, and Levi’s Plaza. In many of these designs, Halprin was inspired by his affinity for the Sierra Nevada Mountains. Most of his urban spaces include water features—creeks, fountains, and waterfalls. To Halprin, actual development in the Sierra itself was neither feasible nor desirable. “The Sierra, I knew, should always remain wilderness.” One of his rare Sierra projects was the re-designed entrance to Yosemite Falls completed in 2005. To Halprin, though, the wild coastline of northern California was different. The Sea Ranch, Halprin felt, “could be the place where wild nature and human habitation could interact.”

Lawrence Halprin, Sea Ranch Landscape, c. 1980
Courtesy of the Halprin Family Archive and Edward Cella Art + Architecture
Ironically, this world renowned development on a pristine section of coastline was the source of much controversy during its early years. Despite its reputation as the ideal community, it became the catalyst for the creation of the state agency tasked with protecting and conserving the coastline, the California Coastal Commission.

As California’s population boomed following World War II, housing tracts popped up almost overnight—from former agricultural valleys to land’s end at the coast. In southern California, especially, public access to beach areas became severely limited by private communities. In northern California development was slowed somewhat by the general ruggedness of the coastline, but in 1963 when Oceanic Properties Inc. purchased the land for The Sea Ranch—then known as Del Ray Ranch—coastal lovers became concerned, and rightly so, that access to 10 miles of stunning coastline would be cut off to the public. Seeking first local and then statewide support, in 1972 activists got Proposition 20 placed on the California ballot, the passage of which established the California Coastal Commission and placed limitations on further coastal development. Without The Sea Ranch as the driving inspiration for California coastal protection, mused former Sonoma County Supervisor Ernie Carpenter, “it would be gruesome out there.”

Lawrence Halprin, Sea Ranch Map, 1960s
From Lawrence Halprin, The Sea Ranch: Diary of an Idea
In other ways, Halprin’s utopian goals for The Sea Ranch did not always meet his expectations. As the community grew and architectural styles became more diverse, Halprin found newer buildings becoming too large. The clustering of buildings—desirable in Halprin’s plan—became less common, and less emphasis was placed on the building and utilization of community-focused structures. With its growing popularity the cost of homes went beyond what average people could afford, creating a less diverse population than Halprin had envisioned. (Some of this he blamed on the Coastal Commission’s strictures on the number of houses that could be built, thus driving up demand and pushing prices beyond affordability.)

In 1995, feeling some despair about the state of things, Halprin wrote, “perhaps most importantly The Sea Ranch still needs a heart.” In part he attributed the lack of cohesion to the development’s layout, and its 11-mile length, which made organic community a challenge. Achieving a kibbutz-like environment largely eluded him at The Sea Ranch, where a more individualistic spirit and desire for solitude is common among residents.

Charles Birnbaum (Photographer), Lawrence Halprin at Sea Ranch, 2008
Courtesy of Charles Birnbaum/The Cultural Landscape Foundation
Regrets notwithstanding, Lawrence Halprin knew that he and his fellow architects had created something groundbreaking and unique at The Sea Ranch. “Despite my frustrations over shortcomings, the [environmental planning and design] message far exceeds anyone’s expectations.” “At The Sea Ranch,” he wrote in 1995, “we have developed a community based in wild nature and sustained by its beauty.”

Alison Moore
Strategic Initiatives Liaison


Learn more about Lawrence Halprin at the California Historical Society’s exhibition Experiments in Environment: The Halprin Workshops, 1966–1971 (January 21–July 3, 2016) and at

“I am delighted that Experiments in the Environment will be coming to its home base in San Francisco, the home of radical, humanistic, and participatory innovation. The exhibit excites me as well because it is including a new section describing my collaboration with Larry and our work beyond the Experiments. As Larry inspired me with his sensitivity to the environment which influenced my experiments, I influenced him in my use of movement audience participation as I pioneered new forms in dance. This combined exhibition shows the impact we had on each other throughout our lives and I hope it helps people understand our work better.”

—Anna Halprin, 2015

Join Us!

Sea Ranch: A Presentation with Donlyn Lyndon at the California Historical Society

Join the California Historical Society on Thursday, March 10, 2016, at 6:00 pm for a conversation about The Sea Ranch with Donlyn Lyndon, Professor Emeritus of Architecture and Design at University of California, Berkeley; author of The Sea Ranch: Fifty Years of Architecture, Landscape, Place, and Community on the Northern California Coast, and designer of a continuing series of works at Sea Ranch. For more information and reservations, visit

CHS Celebrates Women’s History Month
March Fong Eu

Portrait of March Fong Eu during Her Term as California State Assembly Woman,
15th District, 1967–1974
California Historical Society 
CHS promotes National Women’s History Month and its theme, “Working to Form a More Perfect Union: Honoring Women in Public Service and Government,” by acknowledging the contributions of March Fong Eu (born 1922).

Tuesday, March 1, 2016

Type Tuesday - Acme Wood Type and Manufacturing Co.

Located in New York, New York, Acme Wood Type and Manufacturing Co. supplied their customers with all sorts of wood type and wood goods needs. 

The Acme Wood Type and Manufacturing Co. specimen catalog (pictured above) praises the characteristics of the company's wood of choice, rock maple, guaranteeing a product that is "practically warp proof," producing the cleanest, smoothest printing possible.

"Clear, clean-cut and finely finished, true artistic designing reaches its apex in Acme Wood Type." See for yourself!

Jaime Henderson