Home The Historical Society How to Join Shadi History Room How You Can Help Contact Us
  About El Cerrito
Photo Timeline
Historical Narratives
Walking Tour
Events

Places of Interest
EC in Print
Meetings/Minutes
Board Members
Newsletter
The Castro Adobe
Chung Mei Home
Preservation Updates
Links
   
 

COMING EVENTS 2017:



THE CITY'S CENTENNIAL -

2017 marks the 100th year since incorporation of El Cerrito as a city. What came before? What has happened since? For what is El Cerrito noteworthy? Who were the "movers & shakers" and what are some of the interesting stories to tell? Click Here for the complete list of the El Cerrito Historical Society's 2017 Centennials Talks and Tours.

Click Here for printable flyers for each of our Centennial Events.

SPEAKERS BUREAU -

If your local organization would like a speaker on these or related topics, the El Cerrito Historical Society has a speakers panel available. Contact Rich Bartke 235-1315 richbartke@aol.com, or David Weinstein 524-1737 davidweinstein@yahoo.com.Click Here for more details.

____________________________________________________________________________________

EL CERRITO HISTORICAL SOCIETY
ANNUAL MEETING-

January 25th, 7:00 PM
At the El Cerrito Community Center

The Historical Society will kick off the city’s Centennial Year at its annual meeting Wednesday, January 25 at the Community Center.

After a short business meeting that starts at 7 p.m., society vice president Dave Weinstein will talk about how El Cerrito moved from “City of Sin to City of Homes.”

While focusing on the gambling and prostitution that once made the city a regional attraction, and on the changes that ensued as reformers and even a few lawmakers stepped in to close up the gambling joints, Dave’s talk will serve as a general introduction to the city’s history. We’ll hear about the first major industry in town to attract out-of-towners. Hint: it had something to do with death. We’ll also learn about why one city just to our south looked to El Cerrito to provide some of the services people in that town wanted to have – only they didn’t want them to be in their town.

____________________________________________________________________________________



THE CITY'S CENTENNIAL -

2017 marks the 100th year since incorporation of El Cerrito as a city. What came before? What has happened since? For what is El Cerrito noteworthy? Who were the "movers & shakers" and what are some of the interesting stories to tell? Click Here for the complete list of the El Cerrito Historical Society's 2017 Centennials Talks and Tours.

Click Here for printable flyers for each of our Centennial Events.

SPEAKERS BUREAU -

If your local organization would like a speaker on these or related topics, the El Cerrito Historical Society has a speakers panel available. Contact Rich Bartke 235-1315 richbartke@aol.com, or David Weinstein 524-1737 davidweinstein@yahoo.com.Click Here for more details.

____________________________________________________________________________________


PAST EVENTS 2016:














































______________________________________________________________________________________



The El Cerrito Historical Society presents:

TAMING THE WILD WEST IN THE LATE 1940'S
The Making of Modern Day El Cerrito

Author and San Francisco State lecturer Chris Sterba will describe how a group of reformers transformed El Cerrito from a "wide-open town" known as "Little Reno" into the bustling, middle-class Bay Area community we know today.Chris, who has lived in El Cerrito since 2001, received a Fulbright Award to teach in Norway in 2012-2013. He serves on the El Cerrito Arts and Culture Commission.

Sunday, January 24, 2016. 2 p.m. Free.
CommunityCenter, 7007 Moeser Lane, El Cerrito.

This is the Society’s annual meeting We will also discuss annual accomplishmentsand elect officers. The talk will start about 2:30.Wheelchair accessible Lightrefreshments.

Information: Dave Weinstein, 510-524-1737, davidsweinstein@yahoo.com.

______________________________________________________________________________________


2015 EVENTS:



SUNDAR SHADI GIFTS

November 14: Movie
11 AM to Noon.
Rialto Cinemas Cerrito, 10070 San Pablo Avenue, El Cerrito

Free screening of the story of a long-time El Cerrito resident Sundar Shadi, his folk art Christmas display and other contributions to the community. The film was produced by the City of El Cerrito and KCRT channel 28. At the Rialto Cinemas Cerrito, 10070 San Pablo Avenue, El Cerrito. No cost; donations through the El Cerrito Community Foundation accepted at the door. For additional details call (510) 524-9468 or visit www.shadiholidaydisplay.com.”

Sundar was once President of our Society.
out my blog post.

______________________________________________________________________________________


To celebrate National Arts & Humanities Month the El Cerrito Arts & Culture Commission is sponsoring a free Arts Day Festival on Saturday October 17th from 1 to 5 pm at El Cerrito City Hall.

Activities and performances include a puppet show by Children’s Fairyland puppeteers, sidewalk chalk art, surf music by the Del Mars, film short by Les Blank, poetry reading by Kirk Lumpkin, street photography workshop, and classical chamber music performances by the KSO Trio and the JCT Trio. Painter Deb Danziger will give an artist’s talk about her solo exhibition in the City Hall Gallery, entitled Beyond & Below, and we’ll have a creative reuse “Make ‘n Take” booth.

Local arts and cultural groups with exhibits include Playland Not-At-The-Beach, The Arts & Culture Commission of Contra Costa County, the El Cerrito Historical Society, and the Shadi Holiday Display Committee.

Want to get involved with or volunteer to help out? Are you hosting an arts or cultural event, performance or exhibit in October in El Cerrito that you’d like to have included on the Arts Month web page? Other questions?Call Suzanne Iarla at 510-215-4318. For more information, including tentative times (which will be updated if revised), check out my blog post.
______________________________________________________________________________________


THE LIFE AND TIMES OF ROSIE THE RIVETER
A Film by Connie Field





















Join us for an exclusive Director’s screening of the award-winning documentary The Life and Times of Rosie the Riveter, including a Q&A with talented director, Connie Field!

The event is happening Tuesday, October 20th at 7 PM at Rialto Cinemas Cerrito. See below or visit http://www.rosietheriveter.org/news-events/events/item/136-rosietheriveterfilm
for ticket information.



Thanks to the Berkeley FILM Foundation, the City of El Cerrito, Rialto Cinemas and the El Cerrito Historical Society, our co-sponsors for this event!


______________________________________________________________________________________



______________________________________________________________________________________


How the East Bay Got it's Forests
A talk by Jerry Kent

Bay Area hills were originally open grassland with fringes of trees. In the East Bay, one man began planting trees in 1895 to forest 13,000 acres for homes in the hills and 3,000 acres for timber. What became of his dream, and how do we deal with his legacy today, amid development, drought, changing climate, and wildfire risks? Jerry Kent, former assistant general manager with the East Bay Regional Park District and a history lover, will describe the history of large-scale tree planting, and discuss the benefits and responsibilities of owning planted urban forests.

Thursday, July 30, 2015. 7 p.m. City Hall, 10890 San Pablo Ave., El Cerrito. Free and open to all. Wheelchair accessible.

Information:
Dave Weinstein, 510-524-1737,
davidsweinstein@yahoo.com.




______________________________________________________________________________________

Second Annual El Cerrito Hillside
Festival celebrates open space

The El Cerrito Trail Trekkers, in association with the city of El Cerrito’s Environmental Quality Committee and Park and Recreation Commission and with the El Cerrito High Mountain Biking Team, is holding the second annual Hillside Festival on Sunday May 17, 2015 from 10 a.m. to 5 pm.

Activities for young and old throughout the 100-plus acre wild land area will include: nature hikes, a pop-up bike park, an identifying wildlife contest for kids, wildflower hikes, historical tours, talks on Native Americans and early settlers, a drop-in Broom Bash to remove invasive plants, hands-on habitat restoration education, free native garden plants, and more. Participants include Friends of Five Creeks, the National Park Service, the California Native Plant Society, El Cerrito Historical Society, the Community Garden Network, and more.

Historical Society programs include a talk and walk about the history of El Cerrito Parks at 10:30 a.m. by Rich Bartke and a 2:30 walk and talk on early El Cerrito settlers by Tom Panas. Tom will run a historical table from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. near the King Court entrance to the Hillside.

The event celebrates the city’s recent acquisition of the Madera Open Space with a noon ceremony. Working with Trust for Public Land, and a community campaign that raised $100,000, the city added the 8-acre site to the existing open land, tying together two previously disconnected sections. Though the event is free, donations will be sought to help pay for habitat and trail improvements.

10 a.m. to 5 p.m. at the Hillside Natural Area. Reception Area is the Schmidt Lane trail head, near the El Cerrito Recycling Center, 7501 Schmidt. Activities throughout the park. For schedule and map: ectrailtrekkers.org/hillside-festival.


Mira Vista Country Club


Mira Vista
Clubhouse History Lecture Series
Friday, May 22 @ 7:00 PM
Vista Room

Have you ever wondered who designed the beautiful clubhouse?
After Mira Vista’s “Pub Club” on Friday, May 22, Kit Ratcliff will be there to discuss his Grandfather Walter H. Ratcliff’s work and continued work of the firm that spans three generations.

Space is limited! If you would like to reserve a place please contact Tom Panas.
You can reach Tom at (510) 526-7507 or at tmpanas@yahoo.com

______________________________________________________________________________________


The El Cerrito Senior Center and The El Cerrito Historical Society Present:

Big Band Era Tea Dance

Date:
Sunday, May 3, 2015
Time:
1 P.M - 4 P.M.
 Location:
El Cerrito Community Center
7007 Moeser Lane, El Cerrito 94530

Cost:
$15 per person
Music & Entertainment:
Huey White Show Band and DJ Chuck
 
Includes:
appetizers, raffle prizes and historical display
 
For more information or to purchase tickets please contact:
the El Cerrito Senior Center at (510) 559-7677

Mailing address:
10890 San Pablo Avenue
El Cerrito, CA 94530

__________________________________________________________________________________


The El Cerrito Historical Society presents a:
Sneak Preview of the Chung Mei Home
Wednesday, March 11, 2015 5:30 p.m.

This event is free but attendance is limited. RSVPs required!

Steve Chamberlin and Doug Giffin of Education Matters,
the owner of the campus, will discuss the historically sensitiverestoration of the building and lead a tour.

Founded in 1923 and operating in El Cerrito from 1935 to 1954, the Chung Mei Home was the only such home for Chinese boys in the country. The building has been beautifully preserved over the years and has been deemed eligible for the National Register of Historic Places. Education Matters leases the campus to Summit Public Schools, which opened last August. We are inviting some of the ‘Chung Mei boys’ who lived at the home.

Time/Date: 5:30 p.m. Wednesday, March. 11th
Location: 1800 Elm Street, El Cerrito

Meet in the Main Building of the historic Home on Elm Street. Three blocks from the El Cerrito Del Norte BART station.

RSVP before March 9 – much earlier if you are wise! No one admitted without a reservation.
Parking is very limited at the site so please try to carpool.

For Information: Dave Weinstein, 510-524-1737, davidsweinstein@yahoo.com.

Also, Education Matters will celebrate the Official Opening For The Renovated Main
Building on Monday, March 23. The Historical Society will co-host this event; details will be
forthcoming.

Click here for printable flyer of this event

__________________________________________________________________________________

2014 PAST EVENTS:

El Cerrito Historical Society’s Annual Meeting

















Railroads in El Cerrito

A talk by Tom Panas


The right of way where BART runs through El Cerrito was at one time a busy Santa Fe route with many passenger and freight trains scheduled each day. Earlier this right of way had been the California and Nevada Railroad, whose trains first passed through El Cerrito in 1885. It all ended in 1980. Tom Panas will review almost 100 years of freight and passenger railroading in El Cerrito.

During the business portion of our annual meeting, learn about the Society’s accomplishments and goals, enjoy refreshments, and help elect officers.

Time/Date: 7 p.m. Tuesday, Jan. 20th
Location: Community Center, 7007 Moeser Lane, El Cerrito


Free and open to all. Wheelchair accessible. Information: Dave Weinstein, 510-524-1737, davidsweinstein@yahoo.com.
__________________________________________________________________________________

The El Cerrito Historical Society presents:
Its Name Was MUD: EBMUD and the History of East Bay Water


Michelle Blackwell from the East Bay Municipal Utility District traces the history of water resources in the East Bay from the private water producers of the late 19th century to EBMUD’s founding in 1923 and developments throughout the 20th century.

Time/Date: 7 p.m. Thursday, Oct. 23
Location: Free. Arlington Clubhouse, 1120 Arlington Blvd., El Cerrito.

Wheelchair accessible. Light refreshments. Information: Dave Weinstein, 510-524-1737, davidsweinstein@yahoo.com.
El Cerrito High School's Musical Legacy Kieth Johnson... director of bands at El Cerrito High and author of a new book and audio compilation on the history of music at the school, will discuss the school's illustrious musical history and play us a few tunes. We may even have some musical alumni join us.

Time/Date: 6 p.m. Wednesday, Sept. 17
Location: music room at El Cerrito High,
540 Ashbury Avenue.

Wheelchair accessible Light refreshments.

Information:
Dave Weinstein, 510-524-173
Email: davidsweinstein@yahoo.com
_________________________________________________________________________________

El Cerrito Historical Society’s Annual Meeting

Railroads in El Cerrito
A talk by Tom Panas

The right of way where BART runs through El Cerrito was at one time a busy Santa Fe route with many passenger and freight trains scheduled each day. Earlier this right of way had been the California and Nevada Railroad, whose trains first passed through El Cerrito in 1885. It all ended in 1980. Tom Panas will review almost 100 years of freight and passenger railroading in El Cerrito.

During the business portion of our annual meeting, learn about the Society’s accomplishments and goals, enjoy refreshments, and help elect officers.

Time/Date: 7 p.m. Tuesday, Jan. 20th
Location: Community Center, 7007 Moeser Lane, El Cerrito

Free and open to all. Wheelchair accessible. Information: Dave Weinstein, 510-524-1737, davidsweinstein@yahoo.com.
_________________________________________________________________________________


El Cerrito Historical Society Presents:

Celebrating 80 Years of the East Bay Regional Park District and its connection with the Civilian Conservation Corps and WPA

El Cerrito Historical Society Lectures and EventsA presentation by David Zuckermann, supervising naturalist with the East Bay Regional Park District

In the late 1920s thousands of acres of pristine watershed land suddenly became available for development. But civic leaders wanted to preserve the land as wilderness and for public enjoyment. In 1934, during the depths of the Depression, the public voted to create the first regional park agency in the nation. By 1936, the new district had purchased enough land to create its first three regional parks—and federal New Deal programs supplied much of the labor and capital to build them.

Date, Time & Location:
Wednesday, August 27, 2014. 7 p.m. Free.
El Cerrito Community Center,
7007 Moeser Lane, El Cerrito.
Wheelchair accessible Light refreshments.

Information:
Dave Weinstein, 510-524-1737
Email: davidsweinstein@yahoo.com

__________________________________________________________________________________


The Anza Trail and the Spanish Settlement of the Bay Area

Wednesday, June 18, 2014
Time: 7 p.m. Free Admission
Location: Arlington Clubhouse
1120 Arlington Boulevard, El Cerrito

Hale Sargent of the National Park Service will discuss the Anza Trail and its legacy

In June 1776, an expedition of 30 families arrived in Ohlone sundarshadihomeland to establish San Francisco. These 240 children, women, and men had come overland 1,800 miles from present-day Mexico. Our nation commemorates their journey as the Juan Bautista de Anza National Historic Trail. The Anza Trail connects history, culture, and outdoor recreation throughout Arizona and California -- including the East Bay and El Cerrito.


To learn more about the Anza Trail, please visit the Anza Historical Trail website at: http://anzahistorictrail.org/

_________________________________________________________________________________


Pioneer Reception in El Cerrito
Wednesday, April 23

Come join us as we celebrate our Pioneers: those who were born in, or very near, El Cerrito before 1925. They grew up here and their families were part of the early days in El Cerrito. The El Cerrito Historical Society will be hosting a special reception at City Hall on Wednesday, April 23rd to honor these Pioneers.

The reception will run from 4:30 PM to 6:00 PM. At around 5:00 PM we plan to introduce all of the Pioneers who were able to attend. Family members and others will have the opportunity to make brief comments at that time.
If you know of someone who qualifies as part this group please contact Tom Panas by phone at (510) 526-7507 or via email at tmpanas@yahoo.com.

__________________________________________________________________________________

John Marsh House - Historical Presentation
Tuesday, March 25, 2014. 7 p.m. Free. Arlington Park Clubhouse, 1120 Arlington Boulevard, El Cerrito.

John Marsh, one of the most cantankerous figures in Northern California history, an Indian trader and self professed doctor who fought with the Sioux in the Black Hawk War, settled in Eastern Contra Costa in 1838, prospered – but met an unhappy end.

Hear his story and learn about the Marsh House, a stone mansion from 1855 that remains one of the Bay Area’s most astounding buildings, though much in need of repair.

Gene Metz, president of the John Marsh Trust, will talk about the restoration of the Marsh House and about the 4,000-acre Marsh Creek State Park that surrounds it, with newly discovered archeological remains going back 7,000 years. You can find additional information about the John Marsh House by visiting their website: www.johnmarshhouse.com/

Read more about the John Marsh House in our winter publication of The Forge.

Wheelchair accessible. Light refreshments. Information: Dave Weinstein, 510-524-1737, davidsweinstein@yahoo.com.
__________________________________________________________________________________

Society’s Annual Meeting - Veterans Memorial Building Tour
Our annual meeting will be 2 p.m. Saturday January 25 at the Veterans Memorial Building*, 6401 Stockton Ave. We will tour this historic building from the early 1930s, hear about its history from longtime members of the American Legion and meet the volunteers who work hard to maintain and improve the Veterans Building. *Please note that the Veterans Memorial Building is not handicapped accessible.

At the Annual Meeting we receive reports from our officers about the Society’s activities and accomplishments this past year. We also accept nominations and elect officers and directors of the corporation for the ensuing year. Also we set the dues for the year. Please be thinking of who you would like to see on the board. Although the current directors have done a great job, there is always room for fresh voices. There are six current incumbents and a total of seven seats if the membership wishes to elect that many.