Sunday, August 19, 2007

Knott's Berry Farm, Phil Brigandi, Tustin, etc.

Today's photo (above) shows Walter Knott taking two of his girls on a tour of Ghost Town in the 1940s. The sign on the blacksmith's door advertises an article about Knott's Berry Farm in the latest issue of Reader's Digest. More about Knott's and the blacksmith shop later. But first...

Local historian and County Archivist Phil Brigandi has finally launched his own website about Southern California history. He's the first person you'd WANT to see create a website, but the last one you'd EXPECT to create one. Frankly, I think his claims of luddite-ism are overstated. The site includes information about Orange County, the City of Orange, Anza-Borrego, the Ramona pageant and myth, the backcountry of Riverside and San Diego counties, Temecula, Hemet, San Jacinto, Indians, Lost Valley, and Scouting. The site is short on bells and whistles, but long on substantive content, which is a good thing. If you get the chance, send Phil an email encouraging him to continue and expand the site.

For an O.C. Archives project, I recently had the Blacksmith Shop in Ghost Town (Knott's Berry Farm) make two branding irons. Blacksmith Dan Rick really went above and beyond the call of duty, turning out two beautifully crafted irons, each bearing a historic local brand. Each was scaled down to 3rd-grader size, and will eventually be part of a traveling educational kit. (I'm sure the size added an extra degree of difficulty.) I've known Dan for a while, and he's a great guy, but I had no idea how talented he was until now. If you need any smithing done, I can definitely recommend the guys in Ghost Town.

I'm going to start making the "daily photos" bigger on these posts. Let me know if you like it more or less.

Oh, and I forgot to post a link to the Register article about the tale of Tustin's 1924 bank safe.

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