Posted in Uncategorized

The Rabbit Hole

I started this blog because I have collected so much information on the history of Oakland that I couldn’t wait to share.  Posting in Facebook groups really isn’t the best outlet for me.  I love sharing what I know and reading what others share.  But things get lost on Facebook.

So with the help of my dear friend Phil (setup and how to), I got started and I was off running, well sort of.  This should be easy I say to myself because, in my mind, I had already laid out actual pages and everything I wanted to say.

Wow, it really wasn’t that easy for me.  I tend to get bogged down in the details.  I worry about not getting my facts correct.  It is hard for me to find a happy medium between too much and too little.  So, this is a work in progress, so bear with me.

Down the hole, I Go

But I have digressed from the topic of this post.  Often when researching one thing you find something else that has nothing to do with what you are looking for, but it piques your interest.  That happens to me a lot.

You might know this as the “Internet rabbit hole”  you know when you try to research one thing, and then accidentally go to Wikipedia, and then you are trying to find out what really happened to Jimmy Hoffa?   That is it in a nutshell.

One rabbit hole I get sucked into often is I will see a picture like this one and want to know more about it.

Oakland_Tribune_Sun__Apr_2__1911_ (1)
Oakland Tribune Apr. 02, 1911
  1. Location
  2. Is it still there?

Those two things can be very hard as sometimes the location is very vague and wrong.  Sometimes the location is correct in the form of an address right below the picture.  When looking up the location I am also curious as to who the house was being built for, were they famous or rich, maybe both?

I have compiled a lot of these pictures of newly built houses. I decided to create a map using Google Maps.  The map I have created is called  “What was there or still is… Oakland California”.  I have already added lots of the homes that I have found while down in the rabbit hole.

What was there or still is… Oakland California

Description of the Map

Some from long ago and long gone, but some still there.  Based on clippings, newspapers, and photos.  May not be totally accurate as address numbers have changed and locations were often vague.

Maroon – Still there
Black – Gone
Yellow – Landmark
Green – Berkeley
Purple – Piedmont
Red – Questions – researching

Here is a link to the map.  Click on it to see.  Please feel free to share it.

 

 

I still have lots of pages in the works just have to get myself out of this hole.

This might help explain Rabbit Hole.

 

 

 

Posted in Advertisment, Early Montclair, History, Montclair Tracts, Uncategorized

Montclair is…

The birth of Montclair

The 1920s were economic boom years in the United States as a whole, and in California in particular.  Economic growth was fueled by the general post–World War I recovery, as well as oil discoveries in Los Angeles and, most notably, the widespread introduction of the automobile.

Oakland expanded during the 1920s, flexing enough to meet the influx of factory workers.  Approximately 13,000 homes were built between 1921 and 1924, more than between 1907 and 1920.

Many of the large downtown office buildings, apartment buildings, and single-family houses still standing in Oakland were built during the 1920s; and they reflect the architectural styles of the time.

1920 was when the first subdivisions or tracts went on sale in the rollings hills in the back of Piedmont.   After running a contest (more on that later) in Oakland Tribune in 1919, Montclair was the name given to the new area.

Montclair Opens

During the first year that Montclair was for sale some $460,000 worth of beautiful property was sold in Montclair.

Her First Birthday

Oakland Tribune October 1921

Oakland Tribune October 1921

Where is Montclair?

Oakland_Tribune_Sun__Jun_7__1925_
The Montclair of the 1920’s – Oakland Tribune

Today when you speak of Montclair it is a much larger area.  The Montclair of today includes the neighborhoods (or tracts) of Pinehaven, Merriewood, Fernwood, Glenwood Glade, Forest Park, Montclair Highlands and also might include Piedmont Pines.

During those first years of the 1920’s a lot of money and effort went to selling property in Oakland.  From free house or lot giveaways to proving car service to the sites from downtown (just 15 minutes away).  The Realty Syndicate even provided a bus( see The First Bus lines in Oakland ) service to some of their sites.

Oakland_Tribune_Wed__Jun_30__1920_

I thought I would show you some of the clever ads that were in the Oakland Tribune and the San Fransico Chronicle those first years.  In the months leading up to the day Montclair went on sale, they ran small teaser type ads all through the paper.  The one above is from June 1920.

Showing the teaser ads

Teaser Ads

What is Montclair?

 

Armistice Day 1920 in Montclair

 

Oakland_Tribune_Wed__Nov_10__1920_
Oakland Tribune

 

Montclair to be continued