California – An Overview

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California – An Overview

  1. 1. CALIFORNIA: GREAT EXPECTATIONSCreating the Infrastructure of a Mega-State• Came in the form of dams, aqueducts, reservoirs, power plants, industrial sites, bridges, roadways, public buildings, and stadiums beginning in the 1890’s • William Hammond Hall published plan for irrigation for the state • He was the first to suggest Southern California could use water from the Colorado River • Resulted in the development of the Imperial Valley • Second canal from Colorado River was a disaster that nearly flooded the entire Imperial Valley • Los Angeles aqueduct took more than 6 years to build • Along with over 235 miles of canals, tunnels, tailraces and siphons • San Francisco built the O’Shaughnessy Dam • Along with four more dams, five reservoirs, a hydro-electric plant, 100 miles of pipeline & 66 miles of tunnel to bring water from the Tuolumne River to San Francisco • It took over 11 years to complete
  2. 2. CALIFORNIA: GREAT EXPECTATIONSBuilding a city worthy of its location• During the 1890’s, a concerted effort was made to improve the architecture of the city • Significant amount of money, and architectural talent, was available for the projects • Many of the buildings survived the fires and earthquake of 1906 • The same architects were involved in the rebuilding of the city • Architectural styles varied, but the feel was similar all over the city • Italianate or neo-Gothic • Beaux Arts style • Used by Architect Willis Polk • Berkeley was redesigned by Emile Bernard, and implemented by John Galen Howard years later • Berkeley was originally inspired by Arts & Crafts movement • Mediterranean Revival • Stanford was designed by Henry Hobson Richardson of Boston • San Francisco looked more like a Tuscan landscape • City extended a formal invitation to Daniel Hudson Burnham of Chicago to develop a formal city plan • Parts of his plan were implemented after the Great Earthquake of 1906, but parts were not
  3. 3. CALIFORNIA: GREAT EXPECTATIONSSan Diego indulged in an idealized vision through the Panama-California Exposition• In 1908, city planner and landscape architect, John Nolen of Cambridge, Ma, developed a plan for San Diego • Unlike San Francisco, San Diego was inspired by places like Rio De Janeiro, Naples • Inspired by Italian and Spanish culture • It was a neo-Mediterranean style • Harbor side city • Palm lined streets and roads • Sunny plazas • Hills, oceans, blue skies • The Panama California International Exposition in Balboa Park set the tone of architecture in Southern California for the next two decades
  4. 4. CALIFORNIA: MAKING IT HAPPENLabor Through the Great Depression and Beyond• California economy was well diversified which protected it from the Great Depression longer than anywhere else is U.S. • California economy supported industrial, entertainment, tourism, agriculture, and service industries • Citizens of California were familiar with working with their hands to earn a living • Gold Rush ushered in that work ethic • Migrant work developed as a result of agricultural cycles • California, and San Francisco, hosted some of the first labor movements • Development of labor unions: topographers and teamsters were the first two • Struggles with ideologue • Marxist-Socialist, anarchy, and overall distrust of America • Initially fighting for fair wages, appropriate work day length, and other safety concerns • Even Mexican workers formed their own local initially called Imperial Valley Workers Union • From early on, California, and especially San Francisco, held it’s views hard- left
  5. 5. CALIFORNIA: MAKING IT HAPPENCalifornia was flooded with migrant farm workers during the Great Depression• 300,000+ migrant workers descended on California • Most were from the mid-West • The drought and Dust Bowl brought them here • The result was a decline in wages because there were far more workers than jobs • A union strike in Imperial Valley, orchestrated by the communists, resulted in problems for many • Again, in summer of 1931, the same communists (CAWIU) organized a strike of cannery workers, and problems ensued • Then in Fall of 1932, CAWIU had the same scenario in Vacaville • Total there were 24 agricultural strikes in 1932 incited by CAWIU • 1933 was the largest strike • 10,000 cotton pickers go on strike in San Joaquin Valley • Resulted in injuries and death when strikers got into altercations
  6. 6. CALIFORNIA: MAKING IT HAPPENDuring the worst of times economically, unions created more problems for workers• When there was a bone to pick, there were politically charged unions ready to hit the streets in protest • Many strikes and protests ended inconclusively • Some ended with violence, blood shed, and even death• Some chose less aggressive tactics to make their point in counter attack • The Grapes of Wrath by John Steinbeck • Considered a documentary novel and many thought it to be true fact • Not necessarily on the left, Steinbeck reported on conditions in the field • Wrote for the San Francisco News • Factories in the Field: The Story of Migratory Farm Labor in California by Carey McWilliams • McWilliams was a leftist activist and lawyer
  7. 7. CALIFORNIA: WAR AND PEACEGarrison State and Suburban Growth• California was seized in an act of war in 1846 • Ruled by military until 1850 • Even Yosemite Valley was patrolled by the military beginning in 1891 • Spanish-American war in 1898 • San Diego was seen as the “Gibraltar of the Pacific” • In 1914, the Pacific Fleet was established in San Diego • In 1920’s San Diego’s Marine Corp Training Depot recruited a marine presence • San Francisco had a large military presence as well • The Army expanded in the San Francisco Bay area • Naval Air Service established Moffett Field • San Francisco & Los Angeles area developed ship and port repair facilities
  8. 8. CALIFORNIA: WAR AND PEACEAttack on Pearl Harbor changed sentiment• America First movement was dedicated to keeping America out of World War II • Supporters included many famous people: • William Randolph Hearst, publisher • Kathleen Norris, novelist • Lillian Gish, actress • Ray Lyman Wilbur, Stanford University President • Robinson Jeffers, port • William Saroyan, California’s most well-known writer • Kenneth Rexroth, San Francisco poet• Japanese submarine surfaced in Santa Barbara • The commander fired into oil storage tanks across Pacific Coast highway • This sent California into a heightened state of panic
  9. 9. CALIFORNIA: WAR AND PEACEThe White California Movement takes hold• Was gaining strength prior to WWII • Alien Land Act of 1913 prevented Japanese from owning land in California • Strong anti-Japanese speeches were given in Congress and by the California governor, Hiram Johnson • Many tried to incorporate Japanese culture, art, and practices into every day life in and around San Francisco • The White California Movement was based in jealousy: Japanese immigrants were very successful • Following Pearl Harbor, Japanese, citizens and non-citizens, were rounded up and declared a threat to the U.S. • Request was headed by California Attorney General, Earl Warren • Two U.S. senators supported this • The mayors of San Francisco and Los Angeles supported this • The entire California House of Representatives supported this • And the editors and publishers of the leading newspapers also advocated evacuation of the Japanese • March 1, 1942, Proclamation Number One designated California, Oregon, Washington, and some of Arizona as military zones • The Japanese could now be removed • They were moved to relocation camps

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