Wednesday, April 15, 2009

Growing up in Anaheim in the 1950s

Anonymous writes about memories of growing up in Anaheim during the 1950s, making mention of orange blossoms...

The best memories are the ones of growing up. Or if not, they should be. I have so many fond memories of growing up in Anaheim. I left in 1994 and when I went back down for a visit, it just wasn't the same. Everything I remember as a kid, is gone. Even my old house where I grew up, is so different. When my parents first moved there in the 50s it was overgrown with orange trees. We had 2 in our backyard and I can remember as a child smelling orange blossoms wafting through the window on a warm summer night. Now when I smell my own orange tree during the summer, lots of memories come flooding back. It was nothing for us as kids to hop on our bikes and peddle down to TG&Y for candy and pop. Coming back proved more challenging as we struggled to stay on our bikes while eating candy at the same time! Nowdays kids don't seem to have the freedom to go off on their own, as we did. Times have changed, not all for the better. I long for a simpler time. Like it was back as a kid growing up in the OC. Playing ding dong ditch-it, roller skating continously around the block, waiting for the ice cream truck during the summer, eating at A & W burger and having mom take us to Knotts Berry Farm to go on the burro rides. Ahh, the memories. I miss them and I miss Anaheim like it used to be.
The last house we lived at in San Diego, along with another house we lived at in Santa Ana, had orange trees, and yes I loved the scent of the orange blossoms. Today, when I ride my motorcycle through the orange groves of Temecula, or through the groves in Pauma Valley, the smell is so intoxicating. I'm not sure someone driving in a car with the windows rolled up would even notice.


    Well I was born in Anaheim Ca. 1936.Went to all my schooling in Anaheim Even Anaheim High School 1951-1955.
    My link above shows Anaheim in the 50's.
    No today anaheim is not the same way back when.
    I was raise on 1123 West Broadway and the house is still there as of in 2004.
    As Well ans my grandpartent house in Orange at 736 N.Glassell St.
    But when Disneyland came alive in Anaheim.
    Anaheim really boomed up to a big city.
    As you all say Anaheim is not the same old Anaheim.
    Which is very True.
    Does anyone remember the Great Flood in Anaheim 1937?

  2. I just want to thank Steve for providing this site so those of us, lucky enough to have grown up in a time when this county was so unique,can take a trip back in time and relive a bit of our younger days.
    Thanks Steve for your dedication to helping to keep the positive past of Orange county available to our future generations.

    These stories and the history of OC should be taught in our local schools.

    Happy memories

    Ben Miller
    BJM Ranch

  3. Rodger Haddon Heights NJMay 14, 2009 6:16 PM

    Ah! What a nice walk down memory lane. I lived in Santa Ana in the late 60's early 70's. Anyone remember Luken's dairy drive Inn and the Foster's Freeze. Lots of blacktop now covering OC. I remember driving my bike to work after school from SA to Costa Mesa. All I saw was bean fields.
    Thanks for this site.

  4. How about Marsh Quail Farm in Garden Grove I use to raise pigons
    and once in a great while I would catch a bird that escaped from there and return it to them and the would give me free food they were on Brookhurst street by 15th.

  5. Grew up in Anaheim in the 50's-60's.Lived at Brookhurst/Katella just west of the old Shell Gas Staion. Graduated Magnolia High in '72. They tore down my house for eventual widening of Katella. Anaheim is tired and worn out looking now, when I grew up my home was brand new and they were mowing down orange groves to build houses. Yes I remember the A&W, Woolworths, the Plunge, countless strawberry fields. Used to hitchhike down Brookhurst to Huntington Beach for the day. Man, times have changed. Someone has posted an old photo of the O.C. Plaza at Brookhurst/Chapman on flicker I believe.

  6. Does anyone remember or have some photos of Anaheim Cone Bros. Chevrolet?

  7. I remember Cone Bros. Chevrolet in Anaheim. In fact, I believe they were on Anaheim Blvd. My Dad bought a brand new 1966 white Chevy Impala there. My Dad bought the one on the showroom floor. I got to ride in it when the salesman drove it out the glass doors onto Anaheim Blvd. to park it. My parents went back again in 1974 and bought a '74 Monte Carlo. That was a sweet car. The 60's were cool times.

  8. I too remember the Plunge at Pearson Park in downtown Anaheim. In the summer I would go with friends and we always got one of our mothers to drive us there. This was in the mid'60s and we were probably about 9 or 10 yrs old. After swimming for 3 hours and they closed the pool for the day, believe it or not, we went swimming in those disgusting ponds that ran through the park. They were gross and had moss in them, we didn't care at the time. I remember some lady telling us to get out or we would get Polio. How dumb were we?

  9. Dose anyone out there remember the South Anaheim little league at willow park? I lived and grew up there and everyone wanted to play on the Angels did any of you play on that team? They were the best as I remember.

  10. My mother grew up on Bluebell by Ponderosa park in Anaheim. Her parents still lived there when I was young.. I remember going door to door and selling oranges, lemons and alvacados from my grandpa's trees. I would ride my bike and roller skate. I used to sit and watch the Disneyland fireworks from their backyard... It kind of chokes me up how so much has changed. It was a great time.

  11. Cones Bros. Chevolet, You can fine picture in the Anaheim High School Yearbooks of 1954 and 1955.
    Because I remeber taken the photos myself.
    Here is A Link to my Website on Anaheim;

    Enjoy, I Have been adding photos there and History off and on.
    George Hushman 1955

  12. I just found this site and have to say I love it. My mom and da grew up in Whittier in the 60's and 70's and I remember hearing their stories of going to HB and Knott's and Disney land. I grew up in Norwalk and went to high school in La Mirada. I am a little sad that La Mirada and La habra aren't mentioned much here. I'm only 28 but remember going down to the base in Los Alimitos where my grandma works for a long time and all the stawberry fields. My grandma just recently have to move out of her house in Whittier but she had orange and tangerine trees in her back yard and I loved the days we would go pick the fruit and eat it until we we're bursting or juicing the fruit using an old kitchen aid juicer. I live in Reno now so this site has brought back a lot of memories. Does anyone remember Motorcycle himm (Beach and Imperial) It broke my heart in high school to see the houses and golf course being built. Also there was a story that I heard in highschool that OINGO Boingo played at La Mirada High before they made it big. I've always wanted to know if the story is true.

  13. On the day that I was born (just before), my Mom said it was hot like Summer out (even tho' it was in February); and she remembered walking around downtown Anaheim in a sundress. Our next door neighbors (an elderly couple when I was small)... worked at SQR for years. I remember when (in the early 60's), every Saturday Fox Theater had a special where you could get in free with so many Bubble Up caps. We used to go all over our neighborhood looking for the caps! And I remember the cool Halloween Carnivals that they had in downtown Anaheim around the same time, & it was safe for us to walk to it from our house at night! When I was in the 6th grade, I was so excited because I got chosen to go downtown & paint my Halloween picture on one of the Store windows, and I got to do it on a school day! I also remember buying all my Christmas presents in Woolworth's, I think (or maybe it was a Kress's Store, although I can't remember how to spell it. I just know it was a Dime Store. Does anyone remember a Kress's?). I also remember the old Anaheim Public Library on the corner of Anaheim Blvd. & Broadway, and how I had to use a card index file to find all my books. I hated it when they first came out with computers and then we couldn't find books when the computers broke down! I kept thinking how that never happened with the card files! Since I grew up in Anaheim in the 50's, I loved to go to the Orange Groves & smell the blossoms. We lived down the street from the railroad tracks, and we would always run outside when we could hear the train coming so we could watch it go by. I also remember when I was in High School in the late 60's, and my best friend & I would go over to the Disneyland Hotel & stand outside of the glass room where KEZY, a Radio Station, was broadcasting. One day the DJ asked us to run over to the coffee shop & get him some coffee, & we were thrilled! He also would let us pick songs for him to play. There are so many many more cool memories that I have of the old Anaheim & growing up there, that I could probably write volumes on it if I had the time. Perhaps one day I will...

  14. Thank you for bringing back great memories of days gone by. I too was born and raised in Anahein, Ca. Born in Garden Park on Ball Rd in August of 1960 and was raised in Anaheim and Stanton. I could go on and on about the great days of yesterday but its sad to see time fly by so fast and with such change. It's a large circle of life as iI drove past the home I grew up in I say new children playing ball and skating as I did 50 years ago. You know it's ok to walk down memorie lane now and then and have a tearful memory of yesterday.

  15. My parents purchased a home on 9702 Crestwood Lane in Anaheim in 1954 using the VA bill.

    My girlfriend lived close by on Gardennaire ln Anaheim 92804 Her name Sharon Diane Smith. My dad worked at DISNEYLAND for a while as did my neighbor David Young's parents. His Mom worked in the Disney office, his dad drove one of the cars on main st. My dad tended parking and the mine train ride. [ ]

    I attended Magnolia and Jonas Salk elementary schools. Magnolia Teachers: Miss Doyle and Mr Coday the later became the principle at Salk Elementary on Gilbert st. Salk teachers: 4th grade Mrs Hess 5th grade Mr Rome. Before we moved to Anaheim we lived in Truman Boyd Manor in Long Beach off Santa Fe.

    I live in San Diego today and My name is James A.

  16. Old downtown Anaheim photos wanted.

    Hi all. My name is Dave Smith. I was born in 1954 and grew up in Anaheim, spending most of the first 40 years of my life living in the old colony district. I am working on a project for which I need old photos of the downtown area; specifically the 100 and 200 blocks east and west Lincoln (Center) and the 100 north and south blocks of Anaheim Blvd (Los Angeles St.) I am aware of most of what’s on line and I'm good on those but what I really need are photos of the downtown buildings which were built starting around the time of the Valencia Hotel and which still existed till the really bad decision was made to demolish them in the late 1970’s.
    The core time period I am interested in is business from the 1950’s and onward though any building that existed long before that is fair game as long as the building itself was still in existence later on. I need photo reference of the stores in the core downtown (except for the Kraemer Building as my wife and I came down and took extensive photos of it already.) For instance right now I am focusing on the S.Q.R. block south side so if you had photos of say the Kress building I would love that. Another store I would love pictures of is the Book Sail at 106 W. Lincoln circa 1969-1975, but really I could use most all store fronts. I would be willing to buy your photos or if you don’t want to sell, I would pay for good detailed scans of them. Most of what’s on line are black and white and that’s ok but some color would really be helpful as I am trying to establish color schemes for the old stores as well. Also if you have a really good memory I would love chat with you on the colors of some of those old buildings. Any help you could give would be greatly appreciated.
    Dave Smith
    Anaheim High class of 1972


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