The following oral histories were sponsored by the Pasadena Heritage Oral History Project and are available in the Pasadena Heritage office for public viewing during our regular office hours of Monday thru Friday from 9:00 a.m. until 5:00 p.m.

Copies of these fascinating interviews can also be purchased. For more information on purchasing one of these wonderful keepsakes, contact the Pasadena Heritage office at 626/441-6333, ext. 18.

Brown, Severin
Interviewed by Grace Weigel Hurd in 1998.
A lively description of the Arroyo Culture through an account of life at the Abbey San Encino, the family home built by his grandfather in Los Angeles, the life of his father, and Abbey Press.

Bignell, Edward
Interviewed by Rebecca Kuzins in 2005.
A champion of recreation in Pasadena, he narrates a change from the military to several recreation positions culminating as Pasadena’s first full time recreation director. He was instrumental in the development of a three agency coordinated recreation plan and the building of Victory Park, the Senior Center, and many facilities.

Carmichael, Jane Giddings 1922-2005
Interviewed by Angela Solie in 2003 & 2004
An accomplished artist, she describes her early life as a member of a pioneer Pasadena family and her involvement with the Pacific Asia Museum.

Clark, John Paul 1915-2005
Interviewed by Marie Stein in 2005.
A music teacher describes his career and his experiences building his house at 1780 Devon Road with architect Richard Neutra.

Clifford, Lucetta 1909-2008
Interviewed by Sarah Cooper in 2003.
A music lover and community activist talks about her involvement with the Coleman Chamber Music in Pasadena, and Pasadena Planned Parenthood. She also talks about her husband Henry Clifford and his passion for collecting.

Crowley, John 1919-2007
Interviewed by Ann Scheid in 1999.
A former Pasadena Mayor describes his successful public service career, the Crowley family, Pasadena politics and his “three basket” policy, which was instrumental in giving Pasadena a more secure fiscal base.

Hayakawa, Tatsuo George
Interviewed by Corinne Bergmann in 2005.
A mechanical engineer describes his early Pasadena experiences and the relocation of his family to a Japanese relocation center. He also describes some of his projects including the National Japanese Museum, and the Los Angeles Pavilion of Japanese Art.

Hensman, Donald C. 1924-2002
Interviewed by Sarah Cooper in 2002.
A description of a distinguished architectural career including an account of his residential projects, the design of the California’s Governors house in Sacramento, and his partnership with Conrad Buff.

Hickambottom, Elbie J. 1924-2004
Interviewed by Sarah Cooper in 2002.
A Pasadena resident since age 1, he describes his education experiences in Pasadena, his distinguished military career, his 17 years of service on the Pasadena Board of Education and his work with many community organizations.

Howes, Maxine Nellie
Interviewed by Sarah Cooper in 2002.
A resident since 1942, who was named as the best dressed in 1959, she describes B.D. Howes Jewelry Stores, Pasadena shopping, and her service with The Pasadena Guild of the Children’s Hospital.

Lowe, Albert
Interviewed by Rebecca Smith in 2003.
A Pasadena Board of Education member describes segregation and desegregation in the district.

Martin, Harry C.
Interviewed by Sarah Cooper in 2001.
A union painter describes working with famous architects in the 1920’s, the mansions on Orange Grove Boulevard and his writing career.

McIntyre, Donald F. 1930
Interviewed by Judith Wilson in 1998.
A Pasadena City manager describes his career, city government, development and redevelopment in the 1970s and 1980s.

Moore, Eudora
Interviewed by Diana Britt in 2005.

Pashgian, Aram J. 1903-2001
Interviewed by Jean Owen in 2000.
An account of early Pasadena from 1903 through WWII and the Pashgian family, owners of a traditional Pasadena store.

Shellhorn, Ruth 1909-2006
Interviewed by Molly Johnson in 2001.
A landscape architect describes her early life in Pasadena and South Pasadena, her professional career working with many famous architects and many projects including Disneyland. Digital Version

Tyler, Wyman Edwards “Ted” 1916-2007
Interviewed by Sharon Girdner in 1999 & 2001.
A third generation Pasadenan describes his significant architectural building and contractor career and his involvement with community organizations including the YMCA.

Williams, Ruby McKnight 1884-1999.
Interviewed by Sharon Girdner in 1999.
A champion for civil rights, she describes African Americans, segregation/integration, the NAACP and the YMCA.

Winter, Dr. Robert
Interviewed by Diana Britt in 2002.
A strong voice for historic preservation, who is a university professor and author of many books on architecture, history and preservation describes his family history and education, his teaching career and his interests and influences on preservation in Los Angeles and Pasadena. Digital Version

Zook, Harold
Interviewed by Laura Voisen George in 2013.
Harold Barnard Zook was born in Chicago in 1920, the son of architect B. Harold Zook. After the war, Zook relocated to Southern California where he gained experience working for Clark & Frey of Palm Springs. He then formed a partnership with veteran Pasadena architect Harold Bissner, but left to establish his own firm in 1948. Zook is best remembered for his contemporary residential designs, many in the post-and-beam style, as well as the iconic 1957 Saga Motor Hotel. Digital Version

The following oral histories are also available for viewing at the Pasadena Heritage office and were recorded through the original oral history project founded by a consortium of community groups here in Pasadena in 1977.

Anderson, Hugh
Interviewed by June L. Benton, 1982

Andrews, Gertrude Klamroth
Interviewed by Coralie Kupfer, 1985

Bangham, Margaret Odell
Interviewed by Sue Ferron, 1978

Benshoff, Hazel
Interviwed by Lorraine Melton, 1983

Bissner, Harold 1901-1988
Interviewed by Ann Scheid, 1981

Borgerding, Mary
Interviewed by Ruth Powell, 1984

Bugg, Alice
Interviewed by Nettie Simons, 1984

Clay, Eleanor Perkins
Interviewed by Diane Weatherell, 1985

Custer, Leroy
Interviewed by Ruth Powell, 1988

Donaldson, Marjorie
Interviewed by Ruth Powell, 1983

Edwards, C. Lewis
Interviewed by June Benton, 1980

Fairchaild, H. 1892-1991
Interviewed by Nancy Impastato, 1981

Fleming, Margaret 1891-1982
Interviewed by Robert Banning and Patricia Copley, 1982

Freeman, Dorothy Dobbins
Interviewed by Thelma Clark and Patricia Copley, 1982

Gardiner, Ella Margaret
Interviewed by Ann Scheid, 1983

Giddings, Paul A.
Interviewed by Robert J. Banning, 1977

Griffin, Edna 1905-1992
Interviewed by Robert Oliver, 1989

Howell, H.S.
Interviewed by Becky Gray and Sherman McFedries, 1977

Hunt, Hubbard 1901-1985
Interviewed by Jan Muntz, 1984

Johnson, Reverend Wilbur
Interviewed by Judith Weiss in 1984-85
A minister who was resident of Pasadena since six months of age, shares his experiences growing up in a segregated town (schools, limitations in housing, etc.). Trained as a minister he served in several churches around the country and got involved in civil rights issues and the War on Poverty. He returned to Pasadena and built Scott Methodist Church. He was involved in civil rights issues and served as city advisor.

Kingsley, Leon 1902-1984
Interviewed by Oliver Prickett, 1981

Leishman, Lathrop K. 1904-1995
Interviewed by Jane Jorgensen, 1983

Marston, Keith 1914-2001
Interviewed by Ann Scheidm, 1982

Neff, Wallace 1905-1982

Interviewed by Alson Clark and Jae Carmichael, 1977

Newell, Kenneth

Interviewed by Ruth Powell, 1982

Phillis, Edna 1889-1983

Interviewed by Terrie Malella, 1981

Pineda, Manuel

Interviewed by Ruth Powell in 1984.

A journalist and author of Pasadena Area History, 1972 (with E. Caswell Perry), he was a Native of Chihuahua, Mexico who arrived in 1918. He describes his experiences growing up Mexican in Pasadena, including attending segregated local schools and sports facilities, participating in youth organizations and working as a school reporter. He also identified Mexican enclaves in the city. His father supervised Mexican workers laying the foundation for the Rose Bowl.

Pletsch, Theodore L.

Interviewed by Nancy Impastato, 1981, Anja Wendel, 1985

Raymond, Arthur E.

Interviewed by Ruth Powell, 1982

Taylor, Helen Louise

Interviewed by Cyndia Wheeler, 1985

Truelson, Eleanor

Interviewed by Diane Watson, 1985

Webb, Audrey 1897-1993

Interviewed by Terrie Malella, 1978

Wheeldin, Donald Clayton 1914-1998

Interviewed by Meenakshi Chakraverti in 1997/1998

A Pasadena resident since 1947, he describes his experiences as a community activist, newspaperman and teacher. He was a carpenter on the Rose Bowl expansion, worked to integrate dances at the Pasadena Civic Auditorium and the schools and helped to establish the Jackie Robinson Center.

Wilfong, J.C. 1903-1982

Interviewed by Ruth Powell in 1982.

Williams, Delia

Interviewed by Karen Mcguire, 1982

*Please check with the Pasadena Public Library and the Pasadena Museum of History for these and additional oral histories.