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City of PasadenaComments
parentGreater Pasadena
siblingsFenyes Estate, 1907Greater Pasadena studiesHuntington Estate, 1911Indiana ColonyPasadena architecture
subpagesAll Saints Episcopal Church, 1924Colorado Street Bridge, 1913Memorial ParkOld Town PasadenaPasadena City Hall, 1927

City of Pasadena

Earlier history is found in Greater Pasadena.
With the opening of the first saloon, law and order was needed and the City of Pasadena was incorporated in 1886.

An area of 391 people in 1800 had ballooned to 2700 people in 1886. The boundaries consisted of Mountain Street on the north, Columbia Street on the south, Lake Avenue on the east and Arroyo Seco. The incorporation of Pasadena -- as well the railroad's capacity to carry Pasadena's citrus crops East -- caused real estate sales to boom. Prices advances more than 500% in a single 60-day period and Pasadena's total sales were estimated at seven million dollars. Many of the large citrus growers did well, but the smaller growers made a profit selling their real estate.

Originally a small agricultural community, Pasadena transformed into a resort town that serviced wealthy Easterners visiting via the new railroads.

The railroad's arrival aided large growers into transporting citrus to the east, and smaller growers profited by selling off their land. Wealthy easterners began to arrive at newly built luxury hotels such as the Green Hotel and Raymond Hotel. Raymond Hotel, the first resort, was built in 1886 by Walter Raymond solely to accommodate the tours his company led to California from wintry Boston. Some of the visiting Easterners settled in Pasadena. These newcomers contributed to Pasadena's prosperity and realized it as an ideal residential city. Pasadena developed a reputation for its elite 400 families, known as The 400.

In addition to the lavish hotels being built, many still-active clubs and organizations were organized. Republican Club and Democratic Club were both built in 1884, the YMCA in 1886 and Shakespeare Club in 1889.

Event Time Overview
Cityhood and Boom 1886 Pasadena incorporated as city. The boundaries were Mountain Street on the north, Columbia Street on the south, Lake Avenue on the east and Arroyo Seco on the west. Area included both Indiana Colony (except for portions of South Pasadena) and the Lake Vineyard Land and Water Association. After Pasadena's incorporation as a city, real estate sales boomed and prices advanced more than 500% in a single 60-day period. Sales for the year totaled an estimated $7m for the Pasadena area.
Resorts 1886 Lavish resorts were built, the first being the Raymond Hotel, luring wealthy tourists during the winter. The hotel strictly accommodated guests on tours that Walter Raymond's company led to California from Boston. Many clubs were also opened in the surrounding years. Raymond Hotel held its opening gala in November and attracted 1,500 guests. Despite operating solely during winter, Raymond Hotel was a financial success for nine years before burning down on Easter Sunday of 1895. Raymond Hotel was rebuilt in 1901, sold in 1931, closed in 1932 and destroyed by fire in 1934.
Power and Transportation 1886 Electricity was introduced. Sante Fe completed its line and a fare war ensued, culminating in $1.00 fares from Missouri Valley to Los Angeles. A former Iowa newspaper publisher named H. J. Vail started a weekly newspaper called the Pasadena Star; it became a daily the next year. Pasadena YMCA organized. First horse drawn street railway operated from Raymond Hill, North on Fair Oaks to Colorado.
1887 Southern Pacific alone brought 120,000 people to Los Angeles. Construction of future Green hotel begins: Webster House was partially erected at Raymond and Kansas, but it suffered financial problems until being bought in 1890 and completed by Colonel George G. Green. Renamed the Green Hotel, it would become a social center that -- except for the eastern wing demolished in 1934 -- remains standing.
1888 Valley Hunt Club organized, with annual dues of $10 and membership limited to 100. The Hunt Club's stated objective was to encourage horsemanship by emphasizing the hunting of the jackrabbit, fox and other wild game. However, it gained greater fame by organizing the first Tournament of Roses on 1 January 1890. In 1896, a separate Tournament of Roses Association was organized and incorporated the following year.
1888 First electric street lighting in Pasadena.
1889 Shakespeare Club organized.
1889 The Grand Opera House opened in 1889 on southwest corner of Raymond and Bellevue, but went bankrupt two years later. It was sold to Professor T.S.C. Lowe in 1891 (forming Lowe's Opera House) the same year he began construction in Altadena of Mt. Lowe Include Railway to the top of Echo Mountain.
1890 First Tournament of Roses. Free public library built at southeast corner of Raymond and Walnut.
1891 Wealthy businessman Amos G. Throop founded Throop University (later CalTech) with an emphasis on manual and industrial courses. It was on the southeast corner of Fair Oaks and Kansas (now Green) Street. Presently part of Green Hotel.
1893 Mt. Lowe Incline Railroad (Mt. Lowe Railway) opened. Three blocks of Colorado Street paved. World's Columbian Expo, Chicago.
1890 Pasadena’s first library built in stone in a Romanesque style. It was damaged by an earthquake in 1933 and demolished in 1954. However, the entrance was left standing as a monument to the library.
1895 First hospital, Dr. Jacob Hodge's Receiving Hospital and Surgical Institute, opened in 5 rooms of Masonic Temple on the Southeast corner of Raymond and Colorado.
1895 Opening of electric rail service between Los Angeles and Pasadena.
1896 Tournament of Roses Association organized, and was incorporated in 1897.
1899 Cycleway built between the Green Hotel and Raymond Hill.
1900 Population of Pasadena was 9,117.
1901 Henry E. Huntington established Pacific Electric Railway. Raymond Hotel burns down.
1902 By this time, Orange Grove Avenue was the address most desired by millionaire families arriving daily from the East Coast. Thirty and forty room mansions lived Orange Grove, inhabited not just during the winter but sometimes also year-round. At its height, Orange Grove had 52 such mansions and came to be called Millionaire's Row.
1902 Busch Gardens was designed and building began. Opened in 1903 by Adolphus Busch.
1902 1902-1913 was the major period of work by Greene & Greene.
1904 Pasadena's population swelled to 15,000.
1905 Mt. Wilson Observatory built for $150,000.
1908 Greene & Greene built the Gamble House
1910 Population of Pasadena was 30,291.
1910 Throop Hall opened at California Institute of Technology
1911 First Transcontintental flight from New York to Pasadena by pioneer aviator Cal Rogers. Calbraith Perry Rogers in "Vin Fiz" from Sheepshead Bay, Brooklyn to Tournament Park, Pasadena.
1913 Opening of Colorado Street Bridge
Memorial Park 1902 The five-acre park Memorial Park was established, bordered by a railroad to the east and Raymond Avenue to the west. It was the location of library, so it was known at that time as Library Park. Central Park was also established.
1923 Opening of the Rose Bowl.
1923 Opening of the Rose Bowl.
1927 Opening of Pasadena's Civic Center. New library. City hall.
1930 The Levitt Pavilion was built in Library Park, later known as Memorial Park.
1932 Opening of Pasadena Civic Auditorium.

Pasadena neighborhoods

[iframe src="http://mapsengine.google.com/map/u/0/embed?mid=z9mIgBV0KF3A.kJmqVXw7_dps" width="100%" height="550"]

Pasadena Showcase House
pasadenashowcase.org
http://www.ci.pasadena.ca.us/Council/

Old Town

Pasadena Arcade Block Building
Arcade Block

Pasadena Memorial Park Station
Memorial Park station

Civic Center

Pasadena City Hall
Pasadena City Hall

Pasadena City Hall
Pasadena City Hall

Pasadena Public Library Central Branch
Pasadena Public Library

Pasadena Post Office
Pasadena Post Office

Pasadena All Saints Episcopal Church
All Saints Episcopal Church

Pasadena All Saints Episcopal Church
All Saints Episcopal Church

Playhouse District

The Playhouse District contains approximately 34 historic buildings representing Pasadena's eastward urban expansion in the 1920's and 1930's, as tourism surpassed agriculture as Pasadena's economic heart.

Pasadena had initially developed along the Arroyo Seco, but the burgeoning economy drove the eventual construction of the Colorado Street Bridge (connecting the San Gabriel and San Fernando Valleys) and the Civic Center, promoted residential, religious, cultural and commercial facilities in what is now known as the Playhouse District.

Pasadena Laemmle's Playhouse Theatre
Laemmle's Playhouse Theatre

Pasadena Canterbury Record Shop
Canterbury Record Shop

Pacific Asia Museum

Pacific Asia Museum
46 N Los Robles

The leading Pasadena architectural firm of Marston, Van Pelt and Maybury was commissioned in 1924 by art dealer Grace Nicholson to design her Treasure House of Oriental Art. It was to be her dream Chinese palace, a combination private residence and art gallery. Modeled after buildings in Beijing's Forbidden City, it is 32,570 square feet, and features an authentic Chinese court garden and a roof made of green bamboo-patterned tiles. Playhouse District walking tour
Maryland Hotel

It once extended all the way to Colorado Street, but a portion remains today.

Warner Building

Warner Building
469 - 483 East Colorado
built 1927
by Jess Stanton

Pasadena art deco Warner Linden Optometry Building

The Warner Building was built by Gladding, McBean and Company. It is remarkable for the incredible Art Deco green-glazed terra cotta grille over the display windows. The grille was designed by Jess Stanton of the Marston and Maybury design firm; he also did design work on the Pasadena Civic Auditorium. The Warner Building was originally occupied by a row of exclusive shops that catered to wealthy visitors, especially from the nearby Maryland Hotel. The building has long been occupied by Linden Optometry and is sometimes referred to as the Linden Optometry Building.

Western Asset Plaza

Pasadena art deco Western Asset Building

Western Asset Plaza
385 East Colorado
emporis.com

Pasadena art deco Western Asset Building

Pasadena art deco Western Asset Building
City Hall in background

In the courtyard, there remains an art deco wall from the Disabled American Veterans thrift store that was previously on that lot link.

Harry Fitzgerald building

Harry Fitzgerland, Inc
489 East Colorado
built 1926
by Cyril Bennett, Fitch Haskell

This one-story stucco building designed in 1926 by architects Cyril Bennett and Fitch Haskell, is one of the most elegant and least altered on all of Colorado Boulevard. Originally an exclusive men's shop, it features a cast stone Tuscan column portico and heavy cast bronze double doors in its deeply recessed entrance. Cast stone panels above the display windows still sport Harry Fitzgerald's initials. Note the medallions in the portico ceiling. A Georgian Revival structure, is [sic] was a remarkable departure from the red tile roofs and pale stucco walls of the Spanish Revival style favored at this time for buildings along Colorado Boulevard. Playhouse District walking tour
Pasadena Star-News building

Pasadena Star-News building
525 East Colorado
built 1924 - 1925

Built of reinforced concrete to support the weight of hundreds of tons of printing machinery and equipment, it has relatively simple exterior ornamentation of light brown terra cotta, its most prominent feature being the two-story high arched entrance with a clock set into the arch above the door. Playhouse District walking tour

Pasadena Star News Building

Pasadena Star News Building

Pasadena Star News Building

Pasadena Star News Building

Singer Building

Supposedly across the street from the Star-News building.

Pasadena Presbyterian Church

Pasadena Presbyterian Church
585 East Colorado

The Church began in 1875 in a private home, with a formal structure being completed nearby the next year. Just ten years later, they were able to afford to build a newer church at the location of the present-day Pasadena Post Office. In 1908, the Church purchased this site and erected a Gothic Revival church and supporting buildings. Unfortunately, the 1971 Sylmar earthquake knocked the pinnacles from the church's bell tower, so severely damaging the sanctuary that the 61-year-old building had to be torn down and was replaced by the structure you see here. The 1908 campanile bells are now mounted on a 120-foot tower in front of the church. Playhouse District walking tour
Zinke's Shoe Repair?????

Zinke's Shoe Repair
592 East Colorado

Note the 1948 neon pole sign oriented to face oncoming automobiles; it is one of the only historic neon signs remaining on Colorado Boulevard.

First Trust Building

First Trust Building
587 East Colorado
built 1927 - 1928
Italian Renaissance Revival
interior murals by Alson Clark
historic photo

Pasadena First Trust Building

The building is eight storeys tall; there is a decorative balcony between the fifth and sixth, and the uppermost two storeys are stepped back. The building is topped by a hexagonal cupola made of steel and glass.

It has ornate interior murals by Alson Clark, which echo the medallions on the upper part of the building along Madison and feature oil drilling, citrus agriculture, maritime shipping and the film industry, all of which dominated the economy of the area at the time the building was built. Playhouse District walking tour
Book Alley

Book Alley
611 East Colorado

United Artists Theater

United Artists Theater
600 - 610 East Colorado
built 1937
built by Bennett and Haskell
designed by Walker and Eisen

This Art Deco structure was remodeled in 1960, but it still retains much of its original character. It originally featured black and silver decoration inside. The architects Albert Walker and Percy Eisen also designed the Fine Arts Building and the Oviatt Building in Los Angeles. Playhouse District walking tour
Vroman's Bookstore

link

Pasadena Playhouse sign

At Colorado and El Molino is a 1935 freestanding neon sign. It was originally set into the sidewalk on the east side of Symes Cadillac (the current site of Jacob Maarse florists).

Lockwood Building

Lockwood Building
21 - 27 South El Molino

Playhouse District walking tour

http://www.playhousedistrict.org/wp-content/uploads/2012/03/walkingtour.pdf

Home tours
http://hometown-pasadena.com/resident-tourist/home-tours-festivals/23789

Walking tours
http://www.oldpasadena.org/docs/OP_Historic_Walking_Tour.pdf

Public art tours
http://cityofpasadena.net/arts/Public_Art_Walking_Tour_8/

Millionaire's Row

Gamble House
Fenyes Mansion

Fenyes Mansion

Pasadena Fenyes Mansion

Norton Simon Museum

Pasadena Norton Simon Museum
Norton Simon Museum

Wrigley Mansion

Wrigley Mansion
Open on Thursday from February to August.
pacificrosesociety.org/wrigley.html
tournamentofroses.com/

Prospect Park

Pasadena Prospect Blvd Bridge
Prospect Bridge

Pasadena Prospect Park

Pasadena Prospect Park

Pasadena Prospect Park

Pasadena Brookside Park

Brookside Park

Pasadena Brookside Park

Pasadena Brookside Park

Pasadena Brookside Park

La Pintoresca

Pasadena La Pintoresca Library
La Pintoresca Library

Villa Parke

379 E Orange Grove Blvd

379 E Orange Grove Blvd
Pasadena, CA 91104

Built in 1914 for a German-speaking congregation. Currently home to Iglesia Del Dios Vivo La Luz Del Mundo, the structure was perhaps a synagogue.

Pasadena

Pasadena

Pasadena

Pasadena

Pasadena

Pasadena

Pasadena

Pasadena

Pasadena

Lower Arroyo

Colorado Street Bridge

Pasadena Colorado Street Bridge

Pasadena Colorado Street Bridge

Pasadena Colorado Street Bridge

Pasadena Colorado Street Bridge

Pasadena Colorado Street Bridge

Pasadena Colorado Street Bridge

Pasadena Colorado Street Bridge

Goodhue Flagpole

Pasadena Goodhue Flagpole

US Circuit Court

US Circuit Court of APpeals
formerly Vista Del Arroyo Hotel

Pasadena Vista del Arroyo Hotel

Pasadena US Circuit Court

Everett House

Currently home to the Shakespeare Club

Pasadena Goodhue Flagpole

Pasadena Goodhue Flagpole

Pasadena Goodhue Flagpole

Pasadena Goodhue Flagpole

Pasadena Goodhue Flagpole

Pasadena Goodhue Flagpole

Pasadena Goodhue Flagpole

Pasadena Goodhue Flagpole

Studies


Police offers tracking a loose bear.

Police offers tracking a loose bear.

Police offers tracking a loose bear.

Police offers tracking a loose bear.

Police offers tracking a loose bear.

Police offers tracking a loose bear.

Goodhue Flagpole, Pasadena

Goodhue Flagpole, Pasadena

Vista del Arroyo Hotel, 1903 125 South Grand Avenue, Pasadena

Vista del Arroyo Hotel, 1903
125 South Grand Avenue, Pasadena

Vista del Arroyo Hotel, 1903 125 South Grand Avenue, Pasadena

Vista del Arroyo Hotel, 1903
125 South Grand Avenue, Pasadena