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La Palma (Images of America: California)

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    Available in PDF - DJVU Format | La Palma (Images of America: California).pdf | Language: English

La Palma, the smallest city in Orange County in terms of land size at 1.7 square miles, evolved out of the Los Coyotes land grant, which later was carved into ranchos, then family farms. Pioneer farmers in the early 20th century diversified, working in creameries and the sugar beet and oil industries. Post–World War II suburbia expanded eastward, influencing the dairymen to incorporate in 1955 as the city of Dairyland to save their rural lifestyle―a trendsetting notion that received national attention. The school districts vigorously acquired land by eminent domain so that tiny La Palma contains five districts within its boundaries. Unable to halt tract building, the dairy farmers continued their bold, forward-thinking initiatives for the renamed “La Palma” in 1965 by creating a master plan that included the first underground utilities in the county.

Publication: Long Beach Press-TelegramArticle Title: La Palma diary recalls Dairyland daysAuthor: Tim GrobatyDate: 10/27/08PAGING THROUGH LA PALMA: La Palma, we've gotta be honest with you, is one of those cities we used to get confused with La Habra and La Mirada. Or is is La Habra that we got mixed up with La Palma and La Mirada? Please, civilians of our nearby La-villes, don't take it personally. We like all you guys, especially the La Miradians, who had the foresight to put up the first Krispy Kreme franchise, way back before the doughnut house came to Long Beach and the wheels fell off, as is too frequently the case when something comes to Long Beach. Or was that La Habra? Our friend Dave used to live in La Palma (we're, like, 80 percent positive) and it always seemed like a nice town. He took a perverse pride that it was incorporated (in 1955) as Dairyland and he used to actually talk about hanging out on La Palma Avenue and Moody Street, the former being such a cool boulevard that the citizens renamed the town La Palma in 1965, when they decided to take on a more metro mien by ditching (almost, but not quite entirely) the agricultural reputation. The original Dairyland seal had three elements: a cow, a chicken and a sprig of grain. It says (not literally, or even in Latin, just in iconography): "We farm. You want something else, get a Sears-Roebuck catalog." A decade later the revamped La Palma seal was cluttered with a torch, a palm tree, a factory, a house and a cow, as if to say: "We're lovers of freedom. We build, we live in houses, La Palma is Spanish for `the palm' and here's a nice cow." Everything we know now about La Palma, including all of the above, comes from the book "La Palma," the latest sepia-toned offering to cross our desk from the popular and generally excellent "Images of America" series from Arcadia Publishing. Compiled and written by longtime La Palmans Ron and Elfriede Mac Iver, the pictorial history takes you through the region's early days, when there was some good deer-huntin' to be had among the groves along the pastures, up through the boom times. Along the way you get a lot of ground-breakings, building and freeway dedications and pictures of city leaders - the first of which didn't necessarily overdress for the occasion. "La Palma" isn't for everyone. There are more compelling sagas of cities and their evolutions, but for La Palmans and those of us who have accidentally found themselves collecting as many "Images of America" books that we can get our hands on, it's pretty much a must-have. The 128-page softcover book, priced at $21.99, comes out Monday at some bookstores, and certainly by calling Arcadia at 888-313-2665 or on the Web. Authors Ron and Elfriede MacIver moved into one of La Palma’s two early home tracts in 1965. After raising a family of five, they researched their family history, discovering many ties to the early history of La Palma, which led to this book. The vintage photographs for this excursion into the past came from the City of La Palma archives as well as private and public collections.

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Book details

  • PDF | 128 pages
  • Arcadia Publishing (November 3, 2008)
  • English
  • 2
  • History

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Review Text

  • By Sherry Elizabeth Barnett on August 10, 2013

    "La Palma" is a beautiful endeavor on the little town that COULD, and DID! As a child I moved into a cozy tract home on Comstock Circle, cross streets La Palma and Walker. It was 1969, and the World was an amazing place (in my eyes anyway). I loved my city of La Palma. I can still see the cows that grazed across the street in the early morning hours. I would ride my bike to the library, wave to the officers at the adjacent Police station, buy ice cream up at Alpha Beta, walk to George B. Miller school at the end of our cul-de-sac, and see huge flocks of birds fly in V-formation past monolithic palms at twilight every night. It was, and is, the perfect city. Ron and Elfriede Mac Iver have presented an outstanding chronological story of a miraculous California development. The archival photos are poignant and brilliant. This book deserves 5 Stars, but I gave it 4 due to not seeing any pictures of my beloved Comstock Circle house or its neighboring tract homes during the construction phase. I plan to move back to La Palma one day! I am very grateful for the creation of this book.

  • By Sandy L. Alvarado on September 12, 2015

    Went to school in La Palma, love knowing the history!


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