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Stories by Robert Mizrachi

California's Bee Man

John Stewart Harbison, c. 1870s. The Pennsylvania beekeeper brought his first shipment of bees to California in 1857. He settled near Sacramento and had such success that many others tried their hand at honey production. ...

80-Year-Old Xmas Card

Christmas card by J.M.F. Haase, 1929. “Joseph Malta Frederick Haase joined the Navy in 1911 and was chief photographer at North Island Naval Air Station for much of his career in the 1920s and 1930s,” ...

Fro Brigham

Froebel “Fro” Brigham, namesake of the Fro Brigham Preservation Band, 1981. In the 1950s, Brigham booked the Creole Palace in downtown San Diego. Billie Holiday, Count Basie, and Duke Ellington may have performed paying gigs ...

Tough Lit Guys

Author Max Miller (left) and Colonel Gregory “Pappy” Boyington, a Marine fighter ace who shot down 26 planes. In this 1952 photo, Miller prepares for the annual La Jolla Rough Water Swim with what appears ...

Builder at Home, 1953

Robert Golden and family, 1953. The son of local construction magnate Morley H. Golden, Robert took over as company president in 1956. Though Robert Golden’s 1991 Union obit emphasized his philanthropic endeavors and love of ...

Bones, 1960

Anthropologists study ancient skeletal remains found at La Jolla Cove, 1960. No indexed information pertaining to this discovery is available at the downtown library, but prehistoric bones have been found “in the Cliffs at La ...

Founding Father?

John G. Capron, c. 1870. When he died in 1914 at age 86, Capron’s obituaries credited him as “the last of the four men who had most to do with building the San Diego area ...

G&S, 1963

Floyd Smith and Larry Gordon, 1963. The duo started Gordon and Smith Surfboards four years earlier. A local surfboard shaper, who did fiberglass work for Gordon and Smith in the ’70s, says for each fin ...

Beer Me! (1870s Style)

Beer garden at City Brewery, circa 1870s. In 1868, the same year Austrian brew-master Christian Doblier established San Diego’s first brewery in Spring Valley (Chollas Valley Brewery), City Brewery opened on the northwest corner of ...

SD's Youngest Mayor

William H. Carlson in 1893, newly elected as San Diego’s youngest mayor at age 28. He’s credited with luring the Navy to town, raising money for the jetty at the mouth of San Diego Bay, ...

Allen Glick, 1979

Allen Glick, 1979. In the ’70s, Glick had a real estate office in San Diego near Banker’s Hill. Around the same time (according to Wikipedia), Glick “was the front man for the syndicate-controlled Stardust Casino ...

Fourth of July, 1923

Members of the Goodwin clan, Fourth of July, 1923. That’s Charles holding up his straw hat. He had a clothes-cleaning and dyeing business on 16th Street, downtown. Among his children were two boys...one named Odie, ...

Peanuts, 1963

In 1963, District 5 county supervisor candidate Al Hogan posed with peanuts. Walnuts, celery, and carnations have all had their high-production years in San Diego County, but peanuts… In 1878, a Captain Porter “made a ...

Fastest Gun in the West, 1964

Eldon Carl, “Fastest Gun in the West” and a San Diego County sheriff’s deputy. A 1964 Union article noted that “he has three times won the championship contest in quick-draw combat shooting...one of six combat ...

Spreckels Theatre, c. 1915

Spreckels Theatre, c. 1915. Signage also advertises “Vaudeville Hippodrome.” Clarence Alan McGrew’s 1922 book City of San Diego and San Diego County mentioned, “In 1915 the Hippodrome vaudeville started to appear at the Spreckels Theatre,” ...

Del Mar Racetrack, 1936

Bing Crosby (left, in the white jacket and straw hat) at the Del Mar Racetrack’s setting of a memorial stone, 1936. (The track opened the following year.) To the right of the hoist chain, the ...

McGovern, 1972

Senator George McGovern (left of center), 1972. He swung through town that year in his presidential campaign against Richard “Dick” Nixon. A Democrat and WWII combat veteran, McGovern’s election would have amounted to a referendum ...

Spreckels Theatre, c. 1908

Excavation of the Spreckels Theatre building at 121 Broadway, c. 1908. Sugar millionaire John D. Spreckels is said to have had it constructed to coincide with the Panama Canal’s opening. (San Diego vied to be ...

Roping Dogs

Dogs’ Beach in Ocean Beach, 1974. The city council got tough on dogs that year. In two weeks’ time, 232 citations were issued to owners, “the toughest crackdown on stray dogs in county history,” according ...

Cavalryman at the Reins, 1876

Jacob Bergman, 1876. In 1937, the Tribune noted that “friends affectionately called him ‘Dutch’…. [He] held the reins in 1858 on the first westbound Butterfield coach to cross the first western desert span of the ...

The Too-Late Shift, 1972

Gail Jones at the downtown Woolworth’s store, 1972. Jones and a friend, waitresses at the store’s café, were in the dressing room changing their clothes when management locked up at 6 p.m. and went home ...

Teen Tamer

Beth Bennett, manager of local Department of Motor Vehicles, 1965. She began working at the DMV in 1946. Bennett left San Diego in 1961, when Governor Pat Brown made her deputy director of the state ...

Power Fighter, 1966

Protest at UCSD, 1966. That’s Lowell Bergman onstage (with sunglasses). A student of philosopher and social critic Herbert Marcuse, Bergman went on to become a producer on 60 Minutes (where his exposé on the tobacco ...

Chinchilla Lover, 1972

Virginia Casey with chinchilla pelts at Graf’s Firs, Fashion Valley, 1972. In 1940, the daily paper interviewed a local retired druggist who was raising chinchillas. By 1951, 200 San Diegans reportedly had chinchilla farms. A ...

Methodist Church, c. 1890

Home of the first Methodist church in San Diego, c. 1890. Located on the northeast corner of Fourth Avenue and Broadway, the church was first a wooden structure built in 1870 on land donated by ...

Disowned Bicycles, 1960

Abandoned bicycles in police possession, 1960. That year, the police began a drive to get owners to license their bikes — to “thwart thefts,” according to our local daily. “Owners of unlicensed bicycles may be ...

Log-Roller, 1963

Jay Curia and his surfboard trailer, 1963. A 1963 editorial in our local daily stated, “Our tired shanks are a little too flabby to allow us the privilege of taking up surfing.... Now is the ...

Murder Suspect, 1961

In August of 1961, a homicide detective (left) brought in a suspect to face murder charges after a woman's body was found in the Mission Bay Channel. A newspaper editorial in 1961 noted that the ...

Before the Chargers Girls, 1961

Before the Charger Girls, the team and fans had Chargettes. Here they are in 1961. According to a posting on glorifythepast.com, in 1970, "A lot of Bolts were caught up in an NFL drug scandal, ...

You Go-Go, Girl!

Tamzon Feeney outside the Box Office nightclub, 1965. According to our local daily, she and "a band of teenagers have attempted what may be the city's first statue veiling. The 17-foot fiberglass-and-steel statue of a ...

Mt. Olivet Cemetery, 1963

Four years ago, usgennet.org issued a report on the cemetery located in Nestor off Saturn Boulevard, near Coronado Avenue. The report indicated that the 20 found gravestones were "unmarked," "broken," "toppled," "disintegrating," "buried," and "vandalized."The ...

Guns Dumped At Sea, 1968

Mayor Frank Curran (left) and detective William Gore display guns to be dumped at sea, 1968. The mayor had instituted a voluntary gun turn-in program modeled after San Francisco's. SDPD chief O.J. Roed, meanwhile, stated ...

Low-Rider, 1959

Phil Bateman holds a yardstick up to his bumper to show off the clearance of his low-rider, 1959. The previous year, San Diego hosted its first Custom and Hot Rod Show in Balboa Park. About ...

World Surfing Championship, 1966

Corky Carroll at the 1966 World Surfing Championship contest in O.B. (Australia's Nat Young won.) In recognition of the contest, the mayor proclaimed it "World Surfing Week," and the city council forked over $1495 for ...

Lucky Waller Park, 1974

Shnops and Sheriff Don Amos at Lucky Waller Park in National City, 1974. San Diego County sheriffs have employed dogs for 40 years. The San Diego Police Department's K-9 unit -- the largest in the ...

Martial Arts Class, 1971

Local martial arts class, 1971. Karate schools multiplied in the 1970s, but in the mid '60s the discipline began getting attention from our local daily. In 1965, it was noted that 11 martial artists wore ...

Actress Lita Milan, In A Phone Booth, 1958

Actress Lita Milan, in a phone booth on Harbor Drive and Market Street, 1958. An aide to Dominican general Rafael Trujillo Jr. seems to be offering counsel. Our local paper learned that Milan fled the ...

Crewman And Dog, 1958

Crewman and dog of Rafael Trujillo Jr. (son of the Dominican Republic dictator), 1958. When his yacht docked in San Diego, news-gatherers and about 5000 people swarmed the waterfront. Most-desired glimpses included the "dapper," "handsome," ...

350-Foot Yacht Angelita, 1958

In 1958, looky-loos tried to catch a glimpse of anyone aboard the 350-foot yacht Angelita, owned by Dominican general Rafael Trujillo Jr. (whose given first name was Ramfis). The 29-year-old and his crew docked in ...

Cop Demonstrates Unsafe Riding, 1966

A cycle cop demonstrates unsafe riding in a parking lot, 1966. Same year, a columnist at our local daily observed that, "If you have a California license to drive a car, you are eligible to ...

Administration Of Rubella Vaccine, 1970

In the years 1963 and '64, an outbreak of the disease affected 12 million people in the U.S. When the virus caught up with expectant mothers, 11,000 fetuses died; 20,000 babies were born with permanent ...

La Jolla Cove, December of 1969

Our local daily used a helicopter to photograph the waves pounding our shores. "No one rode [the waves because they were so big]," says surfer/shaper Steve Scatolini, who was in his early teens. "I heard ...

Food Authority George Mardikian, 1958

Local Rotary Club member Mrs. Homer Peabody talks steak thickness with food authority George Mardikian (1958). As a teen, Armenian-born Mardikian escaped from a Turkish prison camp and made his way to the U.S. He ...

Balboa Park Carousel, 1957

The ride arrived in the West from New York in 1910. The operator of Coronado's seasonal Tent City bought it from an L.A. owner soon after. Some say the carousel was moved between the Tent ...

San Diego High, 1958

From the Evening-Tribune photo assignment sheet: "Get a shot or two of a policeman chatting informally with four or five students -- girls and boys, or all boys, whichever is easiest...idea is that cops and ...

Lorna And Three Teen-Age Friends, 1965

In June of 1965, the Evening Tribune sent a photographer to 3535 Tomahawk Lane in Clairemont. The angle of the story isn't clear today, but the assignment sheet reads: "Take photo of Lorna [Montgomery, standing, ...

Excavation Of 5000-Year-Old Man, 1968

Ten years earlier, plans got under way to develop the 780-acre Sorrento Valley Industrial Park -- "one of the greatest industrial parks in the nation," according to developers quoted in the local daily. As development ...

Tavern Owners Bartenders School, 1971

Carole Manning at Tavern Owners Bartenders School on Union Street, 1971. In May of '71, the state supreme court decided it was unconstitutional to prevent women from holding a job as bartender. "Percy Husong claims ...

Mother of 15 Girls and 8 Boys, 1960

Mrs. Jerome Garcia and some of her children in their Logan Heights home, March 1960. "She was glad her latest child was a boy," according to our local daily. "She is the mother of 15 ...

Car Trouble On SR 163, 1958

It only looked like car trouble on SR 163, near the Laurel Street bridge, in July of 1958. A newspaper reporter was dispatched to the site to pretend her car conked out. "Sixty cars passed ...