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1. Unlike Berkeley, which has many buildings from the 19th century, El Cerrito barely has any. Development came later to our town because:
2. Like many towns throughout the U.S.A., El Cerrito developed originally as a series of small enclaves. Which of the following are not names of early 20th century El Cerrito settlements?
3. Cerrito Vista Park, where we are celebrating the nation’s independence today, was used at one time as:
4. El Cerrito’s Recycling Center, dating to 1972, is historically important because: (More than one answer may be correct)
5. In the 1910s and 1920s, El Cerrito had at least two men who designed and built airplanes, Pierre Allinio and Samuel H. Capelis of the Capelis Safety Aeroplane Corporation. Our fair city also had at least one landing field, which could be found:
6. For 50 years El Cerrito was famous throughout Northern California as a gambling Mecca. Several sites still remain marking, albeit quietly at times, this colorful if disreputable era. These include: (More than one answer may be correct)
7. Japanese flower growers based in El Cerrito and Richmond once made up an important business sector in West Contra Costa County. Throughout the area, many Japanese families lost their properties when they were interned during World War II and unable to pay property taxes or other obligations. But the Mabuchi family, who operated their business in the stone-faced, three-gabled building next to City hall, did return, because:
8. The most famous rock band to come out of El Cerrito, in fact the most famous anything, got its start within blocks of the park where our July 4 festival is happening. Creedence Clearwater Revival got its start at (More than one answer may be correct):
9. In its heyday, before being re-nicknamed the “City of Homes,” El Cerrito was known for its spicy entertainment. Among the performers who graced its stages were (More than one answer may be correct):
10. The first dwelling built by people of European descent in El Cerrito, the Castro Adobe, from the 1840s, is no longer with us. Why not?
El Cerrito History Quiz
Notes: D is a contributing cause. There was a dynamite factory near Albany Hill but it closed in the early 1900s and doesn’t appear to have been a major factor in influencing development. Some land was marsh in low-lying areas but again this doesn’t seem to have been a major factor.
2. Tepco Town and Baxter.
4. Loading yard
Notes: The dog track was on the site of EC plaza; dairies were all over but not here. Not that we know at least. There were several prizefight arenas in town but not here.
Notes: many recycling centers predated El Cerrito’s by a few years, including centers in Palo Alto, Davis, and Modesto. It wasn’t even the first in EC; there was one at the old El Cerrito Co-op store!)
7. All are correct except Bead biz; Bead Biz is the Nawata family’s former Japanese Laundry, an important remnant of the early Japanese in EC. Eagles hall is the former Wagon Wheel gambling establishment; Nong Thon was once used for prize fights; the dental office was once the It Club, a nightclub and gambling hall
9. A and C – the Fogerty home
10. All but b. and e. Isadora Duncan was a dancer of worldwide fame from Oakland; Maya Angelou, the author, was once a famous calypso singer and dancer in nightclubs; but though she lived for a while in El Cerrito, she probably never danced here, as dancing occupied an earlier phase of her career.
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