In early 1942 Camp Seaside was constructed along the Pacific coast just north of the mouth of the Ventura River to protect the Channel Islands area. The Camp Seaside artillery site was comprised of two gun emplacements, barracks, and ammunition bunkers. This location was fortified in response to the attack by a Japanese submarine at the Ellwood oilfield on February 23, 1942. Following that attack there was concern that the oil installations further up the Ventura River were at risk. The two large guns were called “Long Toms” and could fire up to a distance of 14 miles. The guns were never fired and were removed in 1944.
Ten artillery sites were installed in coastal Southern California during World War II. Today it is estimated that remnants remain of only three, including Ventura’s Battery 2. The remnants of this site consist of two 38 foot diameter concrete circles topped with steel rails that allowed the guns to swivel in all directions.
89. Norton Ranch House 71 N. Palm Street
Designated October 1998
This large two-story Craftsman style house was built in 1910 by Mr. Norton for his home in the 40 acre walnut grove located off of Bristol Road in east Ventura. During the twentieth century many prominent families, Cheney, Callens, Vanoni, Ramelli and De Silva, were connected to the house. In 1989 the house was moved to downtown Ventura when the property on which it sat was purchased for development. Moved to its current location in 1993, the house was eventually rehabilitated for use as a restaurant. The exterior has been faithfully restored including a distinctive second story porch that runs the full length of the front and a porte-cochere.
John C. Fremont led an expedition of troops, horses and supplies from Monterey to San Buenaventura during late 1846 and early 1847, during the War with Mexico. The trip south was arduous and, in the afternoon of January 5, 1847, Fremont and his remaining expedition entered San Buenaventura and camped overnight in the orchard west of the San Buenaventura Mission Garden wall. On the rise above the Mission, a small band of Californians was seen and Fremont and his troops fired on them. The Californians scattered and Fremont's men guarded the top of the hill all night. During that night, Fremont captured Don Jose Arnaz, a local merchant, and threatened his life until Arnaz gave Fremont military information and supplies. Arnaz was released. Land that Arnaz had purchased from the Mission in 1846 was taken from him by the United States government, which did not recognize his title to the land. The land was later returned to him by the U.S. Courts. In 1850, Arnaz sold the land to Dr. Manual R. de Poli, a Spanish physician.
91. China Alley Historic Area 200 Block E. Main Street
In the early 1880’s, a flourishing Chinese settlement made up of merchants, laborers, and families settled in an area along Figueroa Street between Main and Santa Clara Streets. The largest concentration of activity was in an area known as China Alley, which ran perpendicular to Figueroa Street. The Chinese immigrants built housing, grew and sold food, and provided a place of worship for the immigrants. Artisans, vegetable gardeners and fishermen plied their trade. Merchants exported marine products and imported Chinese goods. Other contributions of the Chinese immigrants to the community included a water flume above the San Buenaventura Aqueduct along Ventura Avenue and the Chinese Fire Brigade that served China Alley and the surrounding neighborhood. The Chinese Brigade was often the first fire company at the site of a fire and was instrumental in saving many structures in the downtown area.
During the early days of immigration, the people of San Buenaventura welcomed their new Chinese neighbors as an inexpensive source of labor. However, with the incorporation of strict national immigration laws in the early 20th century, a hostile environment forced the residents of China Alley to relocate to other areas.
92. Louis Rudolph Craftsman Bungalow 958 E. Santa Clara Street
Designated March 2002
This single-story Craftsman Bungalow was built by local contractor Louis Rudolph in 1922 and lived in by his family until 1925, when he sold the lot to Amos Lovoorn, Manger of J. C. Penny Company. Mr. Rudolph built the house next door and also built the Elk’s Hall on Main Street and Ash.
The house is a well-designed bungalow with a basement. The low-pitched hipped gable roof has exposed rafters under the broad eaves. Two large square stuccoed columns support the hipped gable roof and cross beam. A half brick design is featured on both the columns and fireplace. The house has narrow clapboard on the upper portion and shingles on the lower portion.
93. Petit Tudor 1725 Miramar Drive
Designated October 2002
The house was built in 1929 by Charles W. Petit, the mayor of Ventura for many years. There have been three other owners of this house since it was built. The house was designed by John C. Austin, F.A.I.A. and Frederic M. Ashley, A.I.A., architects with offices located in the Chamber of Commerce building in Los Angeles, and is a good example of English Tudor architecture in Ventura. The English Tudor style refers to the Tudor period in England in the first half of the 16th Century. This period included the reign of Henry VII, Henry VIII, Edward VI, and Mary. The Tudor style was used for domestic vs. ecclesiastical architecture.
The house is a two story single-family residence. The footprint is mostly rectangular with some irregularities. The roof is very high pitched. The exterior is stucco with many details in brick and wood. Most of the windows on the first floor are casement windows. These windows are equipped with metal roller screens. There are many leaded windows throughout the house. There is a bay window in the library with a copper roof. On the second floor, most windows are casement or double hung, but on an old sleeping porch there are "pocket windows." These windows have a windowsill that opens and the windows drop into a pocket below. The front door has white oak veneer and has a window with a wrought iron grate. The entire entry is framed in decorative brick. In 1996 the house was remodeled and some alterations were made. The kitchen and breakfast area windows were changed and a fireplace was added in the breakfast area. An outdoor patio with fireplace was also added. These added features are in keeping with the architecture of the home.
94.Rancho Attilio Site South of Telephone Road Between Designated March 27, 2006 Saticoy Avenue and Wells Road
Rancho Attilio was established in 1916 when Attilio Vanoni purchased approximately 117 acres near Saticoy from the Pacific Improvement Company for the raising of dry row crops, walnuts, lemons, oranges and avocados. The site was once part of Sa’aqtik’oy, a Chumash village, and is significant for its association with the development of the Saticoy area and the Vanoni family, which has farmed continuously in the region to the present for over a century.
Attilio Vanoni was a native of San Pietro in the Italian Alps who immigrated with his parents in 1895, settling in Ventura County, where they farmed in the Camarillo and Saticoy area. The 1940 edition of the History of Ventura County describes Mr. Vanoni as “one of the most successful ranchers in Ventura County and a man highly esteemed.”
The ranch has been reduced from its original size to 67.7 acres, extending east of Saticoy Avenue to the Brown Barranca and south of Telephone Road to the Southern Pacific rail line. Most of the older buildings were demolished to accommodate a residential development and Veterans Home. A 2.7-acre parcel fronting on Telephone Road is the site of the original Vanoni homestead.
The property was designated a “Point of Interest” because the original ranch no longer exists but is associated with a significant aspect of our county’s history due to its contribution to farming and the development of the area, and the history of the Vanoni family.
95. Mayfair Theater Site 793 East Santa Clara Street
Designated March 27, 2006
Designed by internationally recognized Los Angles architect S. Charles Lee, this 1941 Art Moderne movie palace featured rounded corners and a majestic curving, neon lit marquee supported by a circular, mushroom shaped ticket booth. The thin cantilevered roof above the entrance featured large round “porthole” openings. A spectacular dorsal fin-like sign rose from the roofline announcing the entrance, almost doubling the height of the building.
During its lifetime, the Mayfair was occasionally used for live performances. During the 1970’s and 1980’s it was part of the “Pussycat Theater” adult movie chain. In the early 1990’s it served as a performance “Coffee House” and dance club. A fire in 2000 destroyed the interior and much of the exterior details. The last of Ventura’s Art Moderne buildings, the Mayfair was demolished in 2004 to build residential condominiums.
96. Coast Live Oak Tree Southwest Corner of Thompson
Designated March 27, 2006 Boulevard and South Palm Street
This mature Quercus agrifolia (Coast Live Oak), located at the southwest corner of San Miguel Chapel site, Historic Landmark No. 16, is the largest species of its kind within the City of Ventura. Based on the trunk diameter at breast height (dbh) of 52 inches, this species is estimated to be 160 to 200 years old. The location of the tree is unusual since the species is typically found in island foothills and valleys. The estimated age of the tree and its atypical location indicate it may have taken root prior to or during the period when the Chapel site was being used by the Chumash.
97. Arnold Residence 92 North Fir Street
Designated March 27, 2006
Built in 1907, this house is a very nice example of a Colonial Revival residence. Colonial Revival details include Doric porch columns, curved brackets under the boxed eaves, and hipped dormer windows. A slight flare at the edge adds interest to the combination hip and gable roof.
Construction on the house was begun by Matthew H. Arnold, a pioneer who came to California from the Midwest in 1859. Mr. Arnold was a prominent rancher in Ventura County and served as a school board trustee and County Supervisor. He died in 1906 before the completion of the house, but it was occupied by his widow, Eliza Arnold. The house was later owned by J. D. Morrill, a Superior Court Judge, whose family owned Morrill Bros. Grocery in Montalvo.
98. Rudolph Residence 86 Encinal Place
Designated October 15, 2007
CC Reso 2007-061
This 4000 square foot single-family residence constructed in the Spaninsh Revival architectural style. Designed and constructed by Lewis Rudolph in 1927, an active builder in Ventura in the early 1900’s who designed Ventura’s first movie theater and the Elk’s Lodge, the structure appears to retain most of the original exterior. Significant changes to the property since 1927 include a swimming pool and out building, and interior remodel of bathroomand kitchens. The property was featured on the Ventura Architecture Weekend tour in 2004.
The home was once occupied by the Larrabee family, whose son Michael was a 1952 Ventura High School graduate who won two Olympic gold medals for swimming in the 1964 Olympics.
99. Elks Ventura Lodge No. 1430 11 S. Ash St.
Designated May 5, 2008
CC Reso 2008-019
At the soutwest corner of East Main Street and South Ash Street, contains the now–vacant Elks Lodge #1430. The structure constructed in 1928 in the Spanish Colonial Revival architectural style, was occupied by the Elks Fraternal Organization from 1928 to 2004.
In the early 1920’s, Ventura experienced a termendous era of prosperty with the discovery of the oil fields in the Avenue area. Over the years, the fraternal organizations contributed tomany local charities including the Boys Scouts and Little League organizations, and served as a social network of community connectivity.
Original building plans indicate the building’s character-defining features have not been significantly altered over time,and the building façade retains most of its original integrity. In the late 1950’s fire escapes were added on the west façade, the entry doors were replaced, the red tile roof was removed and the existing porte cochere canopy was added. A couple of the smaller windows were replaced with aluminum-framed windows. Interior alterations were numerous, but much of the original interior remains intact.
100. Avenue Water Treatment Facility 5895 N. Ventura Ave.
Designated February 5, 2008
CC Reso 2008-005
Ventura Avenue Water Treatment Facility Adminstrative Building located at 5895 North Ventura Avenue was constructed in 1938, it represents 125 years of continuous water development history in the City of Ventura, and the three-story administration building reflects and industrial waterworks build with a Spaninsh Colonical Revival design that retains much of its original integrity.
101. Harry S. Valentine House 993 E. Santa Clara St.
Designated March 10, 2008
CC Reso 2008.010
Harry S. Valentine House, originally constructed in 1915 by Mr. Valentine. Mr. Valentine was an early lima bean farmer and landowner who built the house and whose family occupied the residence for 45 years. Valentine Road, extending parallel to Highway 101 from Telephone Road to easterly to Victoria Road, was named in honor of Mr. Valentine.
The two story house exhibits a Craftsman venacular with an Oriental influence, and is considered the last of its kind in Ventura. The character defining features of this style include a low-pitched gabled roof with wide, unenclosed eave overhangs and false beams, covered porches supported by square columns extending to ground level, exposed rafter tail, and transomed window. The Oriental infulence is seen in the stylized peaks of the roof gables. Although tapered porch columns are typically found in ths style, square columns are considered a variant of this style.
102. Old Town Main Street Investments, LLC 315-321 E. Main Street
Designated September 21,2009
CC Reso 2009.057
The “McGuire Building/Pythian Castle” was built in 1906-1907 during the “City Expansion and Civic Improvement (1906-1920)” period of significance. This era incorporates the “City Beautiful Movement,” that embodied the 1890s through the early 1900s. This movement emphasized urban beautification and monumental architecture as a means to promote moral and civic virtues. As commercial development expanded east of the Mission during the early 1900s, Main Street became a primary commercial corridor laced with monumental buildings with ornamental architectural detail. The McGuire Building reflects this era, with an intact decorative brick face with a recessed X and O pattern and friezes below the roofline and extending above the parapet. The structure maintains much of its historic integrity and is considered to be one of the few remaining intact examples of early decorative brick along Main Street’s commercial corridor during the “City Expansion and Civic Improvement Period of 1906-1920.”
William McGuire, the initial owner of the “McGuire Building/Pythian Castle,” is an example of an individual who made a meaningful contribution to the development of the local community. Beginning in 1900, William McGuire was the Vice President of the People’s Lumber Company. In 1903 he co-founded the Ventura Manufacturing & Implement Company, which supplied farm equipment to local communities. In 1906 he was the City Trustee during the construction of his building, and he later became head of the County Highway Commission. The second floor of the McGuire Building/Pythian Castle also served as a lodge hall for local fraternal organizations. William McGuire’s active involvement in the community, local, government, business, and fraternal organization are significant contributions to Ventura’s local history.
103. Strickland Residence 1660 Poli Street
Designated September 21,2009
CC Reso 2009.058
The residence located at 1660 Poli Street is association with the Oil boom era beginning in 1929. Florence Brigham and her husband, Charles Francis (Frank) Brigham were considered pioneers after Frank Brigham inherited his father’s business, the F.P. Brigham Implement Company. Florence Brigham was a member of a social society and held the position of president of the Ventura County Federation of Women’s Clubs. The Brigham family had three children. The oldest son, Alfred Brigham, established a merchant business, the Brigham and Beaman firm with his brother-in-law, Selwyn Beaman.
The Brigham and Beaman firm was established on Main Street for nearly 50 years and was involved in the community and with contributors, advertisers, and sponsors of Ventura High School. Property records indicate that Frank and Florence Brigham resided at the subject property from 1925 until 1929. The Brighams then exchanged homes with their daughter and son-in-law, Helen and Selwyn Beaman in 1929, and they occupied the house until1934. Helen Brigham was the Society Editor of the Ventura County Star in the late 1920s and early 1930s. Her role in this association represents a vital role for the aspirations of women during this period.
104. Lucking Residence 230 S. Ash Street
Designated July 19 ,2010
CC Reso 2010
The residence located at
Mission Historic District Boundaries: Santa Clara Street
Mitchell Block Historic District Boundaries: Plaza Park/Houses
on Thompson Boulevard
608, 620, 632, 644,
658, 670, 682 and
Selwyn Shaw Historic District Boundaries: Buena Vista Street