2019 OBHS Board Members

Front Row: Kitty McDaniel (Secretary), Steve Rowell (former Brd. Mem.), Dedi Ridenour, Jonnie Wilson (Program Coordinator), Ray Blavatt (IT), Barbara Busch (Archivist), Stephanie Greenwald (Memberships), Staircase: Kathy Blavatt (Creative Director), Pat James (V.P.), Susan James (Treasurer), Bill Riley, Eric DuVall (President), Debbie Green, Terry Beddoes, Tom Gawronski, and Jane Gawronski (Correspondence Secretary).




32 Responses

  1. Re: The Bird Lady of Ocean Beach, my cousin, Eulah Mima Holt. (1896-1983) Do you have any info on her? Thank you.

    • In my early teens (early 60’s) I was hired by Mrs. Holt to clean her aviaries. She had blue masked lovebirds outside (amongst other birds) and a Mynah bird in her house that belonged to her mother. She was very kind to me….

  2. My name is Russell Chapin I am a Junior at Saint Augustine High School, I am doing a project for my history class on the cultural impact of OB, past and present. If you have any sources that I could use for my project, mainly general information, possibly major players in the early development of the community, any information on the wonerland theme park, pictures or other medium, it would be greatly appreciated. It is due in the next couple of weeks so if you could reply soon it would be greatly appreciated. you can reach me through the provided email address. thank you

  3. Hi Russell,

    Profuse apologies for not contacting you in time to be useful for your paper. I hope you were able to find information elsewhere. If you want to try another topic or expand on this one later, I hope to be more helpful.


  4. A family member was with the Army Corp of Engineers at Point Loma in the 1920’s-1930’s. His
    immediate family found a couple of pictures of the
    Ballast Point Area. One is a panorama of 6 photos pieced together dated 1905 by Photographer Lee Passmore. It is framed, and in good condition, in my opinion. The other is a photo referencing construction at the sub base wharf noted as about 1909.

    Would your group be interested in these? The San Diego Historical Society returned them because they
    apparently had similar photos in their collection.

    I am hopeful they can find a home. I hate to put 100-year old history in the trash!

    Please let me know via e-mail. Thank you.

  5. Just move to OB and noticed an interesting poem on the wall at the post office . . . does anyone know where I might obtain a copy of that?


  6. Hey OB Historicals – we’re looking for old OB Rags and would like to meet with someone from the group – the archivist – and see which issues you have. We know you have some, as our friends have turned their copies over to you over the years. Please contact me.

  7. Hello,
    I am currently doing research for a book about the darker side of San diego history. My father in law, in OB since 1956 told me of a double homicide at an OB hotel during the 1960’s still unsolved. Does anyone have any information on this? You may also call me at 619-917-1627. Thank you!

  8. Thanks for the great info. Mike! It is appreciated.

  9. Are you doing your annual OB Historical Walk this month (July 2009)? Thanks!

  10. The picture at the top of the home page–early days on Newport, I believe. My sister has a framed copy of that photo. I would like to purchase one–does anyone know where it might be available to buy? I love the photo (I grew up in Ocean Beach).

  11. Debra
    These are available through the society.
    They are $35 plus shipping.
    The size is approx. 8″ + 30″.
    You can e – mail me at

  12. Pat,
    Very nice to meet you last night, as was the conversation. I would really like to become involved with yours and other Histerical Societies in San Diego. Not only to network for work, but because I do really care about preservation. I urge you to visit my web site as well as the Maryland Historical Trust. There is a link for qualified consultants and we are #1 on the list, as well as the most knowledgeable in the field. The federal government sets the rules for restorations, then state and local groups can add to it. My family is VERY WELL versed in the Historical Tax Credit Program, as am I. We need to work on getting OB on a national register so those great folks I met last night can qualify for the federal tax incentive. Too bad California doesn’t match it like many other states. If this message does go to you, could you please respond to my email address, I have some questions and thoughts for you. Be Well.
    Mat Azola
    Azola Building Co., Inc.

  13. I am looking for historical pictures of houses on Homer Street in the Loma Portal area. Some folks said to check with OB Historical Society. Specifically for 3221 Homer St (our house) before 1950 when it had a porch we are trying to recaputure for a historical designation and we want to do it like David O. Dryden intended. PLease let me know if you might have any or know of anyone that might. We graciously appreciate any advisement. Sincerely, Cindy

  14. Hope someone gets this as there is no ph. # for the OBHS ( not that I can find anyway ). My name is Mark Hurlock. A former local. I’m looking for Merton “Mert” Ahlquist. He was a SDFD Capt. on “A” shift at fire station 15 on Voltaire St. This dates back some time ago as I new him from 1969-1975. I was a kid then and they ( Battallion Chief and Engine Co. 15 crew used to let me hang around all the time. I saw a clip of film from “Mert” that was donated to the OBHS and shown on Noaa’s KPBS show Wonderland. I’m wondering if Mert is still around. I was told recently this may be possible. These guys were the greatest to me – ever! There’s so much that I would love to talk about. So many stories from hanging around there years ago. Memories of those and how they treated me, I’ll always cherish and remember forever.

    Battalion Chief – Gordon E. Browne
    Captain – Merton Ahlquist
    Engineer – Angelo Rea
    Fireman – Don Jeans
    Fireman – Geoff Polancic

    • Check with St. Peter’s Lutheran on Sunset Cliffs Blvd. I know that’s were Mert went to church and they would know if he’s still around.

  15. …I am looking for o/a 1955 ventage photos of the Strand Theater and side bussiness’s on each side, located Newport Ave. OB- Can you help me?

  16. HI, OBHS,

    In the 1950s my husband’s Uncle Joe, after a stint in the Navy owned a bar on Newport called “Joe and Mom’s” or “Mom and Joe’s.” I’m wondering if the OBHS has any photos of and/or other information about it. I’m happy to come down and sift through the possibilities if you think there are any. Would you kindly let me know? Many thanks.

    • Hello Leslie,
      I’ll ask around and see if I can find anything out. We do have our archives at the Point Loma Methodist Church. We have some old directories there. Access to archives are by appointment. Feel free to contact me. 619-226-8125

      • I would like to make an appointment to access the archives. My great gandfather owned property on Newport Street and I would love to see if there are any pictures or other information about him. Thanks.

  17. My name is Phyllis Achuff and I lived in Ocean Beach in the 1950’s. We lived on Del Monte street and my parents frequently went to the bar on Newport (I think it’s called The Strand??) I also went to school in OB as a young child. I have lots of pictures from the 1950’s that I would love to share with somebody from the OB Historical Society. My goal is to figure out where the exact location is in present day since I am sure alot of the cliffs are gone in the last 60 years. I also lived on Saratoga in 1970. If you can help, please contact me @
    Thank you very much,
    Phyllis Achuff

  18. Looking to find information on the levee that runs along
    dog beach (the river channel); when and who built it? who maintains it?etc. Anybody know anything? sharron V. (619) 223-1400

  19. I am looking for historical pictures of Ocean Beach and Point Loma covering the past 70 years. Do you have any links or references? Jim Carlyle (830) 822 7088 or (619) 223 2423

    • Hi Jim, San Diego History Center has many good early shots on-line available for purchase. They have some of the best since they have been collecting for so long. Our photo archives are constantly growing and can be seen by appointment with our archivist Mary. She can be reached at 619-224-7784. Pat

  20. Does anyone have a photo of Edna’s Leilani Club? I believe it was near the corner of Abbot and Muir in 1967-68. I need a picture of it for a story I’m writing. I lived at 5137 Muir Avenue back then.

  21. I moved from OB and lost contact with our dear friend Carol Bowers. The last time I saw her was at Ned’s Wisteria party. I’m afraid to ask but is Carol still with us? Thanks Clare Portland OR

  22. Please help keep the Rosecroft Estate a historical site not an Event Center, nor a sub divided property! Both are in the works! The house is zoned for single family, not
    parties, events or a hotel( VRBO) It has recently been lease for this purpose and according to the city, it is not zoned or permitted as an event space.

  23. I knew Mima Holt the last 7 years of her life. I have stories to tell of my friend also known as the “Bird Lady” of O.B.

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