The Finding Aid of the Mary Frampton Papers 0170

Reilly Saint Amand
Pepperdine University. Special Collections and University Archives.
June 2019
24255 Pacific Coast Highway
Malibu, CA, 90263-4786

Language of Material: English
Contributing Institution: Pepperdine University. Special Collections and University Archives.
Title: Mary Frampton Papers
Identifier/Call Number: 0170
Physical Description: 4 Linear Feet (6 Hollinger Boxes, 1 large flat box)
Date (bulk): 1930-2007
Abstract: Mary Frampton was an award winning photographer who worked for the Los Angeles Times for over thirty years, starting in 1956 as one of the first female staff photographers. Later in life, Frampton became deeply involved with environmental activism in her hometown of Malibu, California, founding the Save Our Coast organization to campaign for environmental causes. This collection contains photographs, newspaper clippings, correspondence, and other materials documenting Mary Frampton's personal life, her professional career as a photographer, and her work with Save Our Coast.

Conditions Governing Access

Advance notice required for access.

Immediate Source of Acquisition

The collection was transferred to Pepperdine Libraries Special Collections and Archives from Jo Ruggles in 2018, as part of an additional accession to the Malibu Township Council collection. It was discussed with Jo and decided that Mary Frampton's materials should be separated and made into their own collection.


The Mary Frampton Papers are arranged into three series: 1. Personal Files; 2. Professional Files; 3. Save Our Coast.

Biographical / Historical

Mary Frampton was born Mary Nogueras in New York City on September 17, 1930. Her mother, Edith Hethcock Nogueras, was an award-winning sculptor who studied with Gutzon Borglum and designed baby dolls for Horsman Doll Company. Her father, Eugenio Nogueras, was a journalist of Puerto Rican origin. Shortly after Mary's birth, the family moved to San Bernardino, California, where her father became editor of El Sol de San Bernardino, a Spanish-language newspaper.
Mary Nogueras enjoyed a happy childhood, influenced by her mother's artistic talents and her father's advocacy for racial equality. In 1947, Mary won a national "Quiz Kids" competition for her essay about racial tolerance in America. She was also involved in her school newspaper, yearbook, and journalism clubs, while attending middle school, high school, and San Bernardino Valley Jr College.
After receiving her associate degree in journalism in 1950, Mary worked as a photojournalist for the local San Bernardino Sun-Telegram. She managed to snag photographs and interviews with several early Hollywood celebrities, including Jerry Lewis, Mitzi Gaynor, and Bob Hope. She sold several of her celebrity photographs to major national magazines, such as LIFE and Photoplay. In 1955, Mary was hired as Assistant Director of Publicity for the newly opened Beverly Hilton Hotel and in 1956, Mary became one of the first female staff photographers at the Los Angeles Times.
Mary worked for the L.A. Times for over thirty years, earning many accolades and awards for her photography. In 1966, Mary won the Penney-Missouri Journalism Award for Women's Page Photographer of the Year, the first ever given in that category. All of the runners up were men. Mary also met her husband, editor Robert Frampton, while working for the L.A. Times. Mary's many decades of work for the Times can now be found in the Los Angeles Times Photographs Collection at the UCLA Library.
Mary retired in the mid-1980s, but she quickly put her journalism skills and connections to good use for her home of Malibu, California, where she'd lived since 1970. Disturbed by the pollution along Malibu's coast, and particularly L.A. County's proposal to build sewers in Malibu, Mary took action and co-founded Save Our Coast in 1987 with activist and Malibu Township Council member Jo Ruggles. Save Our Coast led protests, funded environmental impact reports and scientific research, lobbied Malibu politicians to take action, and raised awareness of environmental issues in local communities. In 1989, Save Our Coast partnered with Shakey's Pizza in a city-wide contest for elementary schools. Hundreds of students submitted posters and essays explaining why every person has a responsibility to care for our oceans. Mary also helped found Malibu Dolphin Watch, which led to Resolution No. 92-88, declaring Malibu a "Human-Dolphin shared environment." She was also passionate in her efforts to create a marine sanctuary off the coast of Malibu. Mary was involved in the campaign for Malibu cityhood, and served on the City of Malibu Celebration Committee in 1991.
In 1993, the Malibu Times honored Mary Frampton with a Dolphin Award for her work with Save Our Coast, and in 2004, the City of Malibu nominated Mary for L.A. County's Older American Recognition Day. Mary passed away from natural causes in 2007, leaving behind a legacy of unique photography and environmental advocacy.

Preferred Citation

[Box/folder# or item name], Mary Frampton Papers, Collection no. 0170, Malibu Historical Collection, Special Collections and University Archives, University Libraries, Pepperdine University.

Processing Information

This collection was arranged and described by Reilly Saint Amand, June 2019.

Scope and Contents

This collection contains materials from the life and work of Mary Nogueras Frampton, photographer and Malibu environmental activist. Materials related to Mary's personal life include correspondence, photographs, newspaper clippings, yearbooks, memorabilia from Mary's travels, items from Mary's memorial service, and items related to Mary's parents and husband. Materials from Mary's professional life include photographs and negatives, press passes, newspaper clippings, awards and honors, and issues of the L.A. Times internal employee newspaper. Materials related to the Save Our Coast organization include posters and artwork, environmental reports, correspondence, photographs, newspaper clippings, and official City of Malibu documentation.

Conditions Governing Use

Copyright restrictions may apply.

Subjects and Indexing Terms

Environmental activism in Los Angeles
Malibu (Calif.) -- History -- 20th century
Photography -- Negatives
Women -- California -- History
Los Angeles Times


Series 1: Personal Files


Series 1: Personal Files are arranged in alphabetical order.

Scope and Contents

Series 1: Personal Files contain materials from Mary Nogueras Frampton's personal life. Many materials belonged to Mary's mother, sculptor Edith Hethcock Nogueras, including old family photographs, correspondence with family and her husband, Eugenio Nogueras, sketches, memorabilia, and an official patent for a hydrofoil device. Mary Frampton's childhood and adolescence and are also well documented through photographs, newspaper clippings, and school materials. Items from Frampton's later life include photographs, largely of her husband, Robert Frampton, their dogs and various homes together, as well as hand-drawn holiday cards and albums from Mary's memorial service.
box 1, folder 1

Correspondence - Family 1930 June - 1965 September

box 1, folder 2

Correspondence from Eugenio Nogueras 1946 December - 1951 December

box 1, folder 3

Edith Hethcock Nogueras 1923 March - 1948

box 7, folder 1

Edith Hethcock Nogueras' Patent 1965

box 1, folder 4

Eugenio Nogueras 1936 August

box 1, folder 5

Holiday Cards 1994 - 1996

box 1, folder 6

Mary Nogueras Frampton Memorial Album 1963 - 2007 January

Processing Information

These materials were originally in a binder and were removed for preservation concerns.
box 1, folder 7

Memorial Service Program 2007 January 27

box 1, folder 8

New York Ephemera 1926 September - 1945 June

box 1, folder 9

Newspaper clippings 1993 - 2007

box 1, folder 10

Nogueras Family album 1933 - 1952

Processing Information

These materials were originally in an album and were removed for preservation concerns.
box 2, folder 1

Older American Recognition Day Program 2004 May 26

box 2, folder 2

Photographs - Friends, Pets and Homes 1960s - 2000s

box 2, folder 3

Photographs - Family 1910s - 1970s

box 2, folder 4

Photographs - Family & Childhood (album) 1930s - 1950s

Processing Information

These materials were originally in an album and were removed for preservation concerns.
box 2, folder 5

Photographs - Framed 1920s - 1950s

box 7, folder 2

Photographs (Oversize) 1969 - 1979

box 2, folder 6

Research Study on Puerto Ricans Survey 1950s

box 2, folder 7

Robert Frampton 1937 - 1952

box 2, folder 8

San Bernardino High School Yearbook (The Tyro) 1948

box 2, folder 9

San Bernardino Valley College Yearbook (Tom Tom) 1949

box 3, folder 1

School Materials 1944 December - 1958 February

box 3, folder 2

South Dakota Tourism Brochure 1950s

box 3, folder 3

U.S. Congressional Record 1948 January 8


Series 2: Professional Files


Series 2: Professional Files are arranged alphabetically.

Scope and Contents

Series 2: Professional Files contain materials related to Mary Nogueras Frampton's work as a photographer. The majority of the materials date from Frampton's early career at the San Bernardino Sun-Telegram, including a substantial portfolio of her photographs and articles. Also included are correspondence, press passes, awards and honors, magazines featuring Frampton's work, and cartoons presumably drawn by fellow staff at the paper about Frampton. There are also several issues of "Among Ourselves," the
box 3, folder 4

"Among Ourselves" - L.A. Times Employee Newspaper 1965 February - 1986 March

box 3, folder 5

Awards and Honors 1947 - 2006

box 3, folder 6

Cartoons about Mary 1970s

box 3, folder 7

Correspondence 1964 May - 1966 November

box 7, folder 3

Dennis the Menace Drawing

box 3, folder 8

L.A. Times Biography 1970s

box 7

LIFE Magazine 1959 August 17

box 7

LOOK Magazine 1959 September 29

box 3, folder 9

Newspaper Clippings 1948 March - 1986 September

box 3, folder 10

Penney-Missouri Journalism Awards 1964 - 1966

box 3, folder 11

Photographs 1950s - 1980s

box 7, folder 4

Photographs (Oversize) 1954 - 1980

box 3, folder 12

Press Passes 1956 - 1982

box 4, folder 1-3

Professional Portfolio Album 1949 - 1967

Processing Information

These materials were originally in an album and were removed for preservation concerns.
box 4, folder 4

Slides 1967 - 1973


Series 3: Save Our Coast


Series 3: Save Our Coast is arranged alphabetically. When possible, folder titles are taken from Frampton's original folder titles.

Scope and Contents

Series Three: Save Our Coast features materials from Mary Frampton's time directing this organization to advocate for various environmental causes in Malibu. Frampton was particularly interested in establishing a Marine Sanctuary off the coast of Malibu, but she was also involved in many other causes, such as cleaning up the Malibu watershed and Lagoon, preventing L.A. County from building sewers in Malibu, fighting for Malibu cityhood, campaigning to free Keiko (the orca used in the film Free Willy), defending dolphins and sea life in general, and educating schoolchildren about the importance of caring for the environment. This series contains correspondence, photographs, newspaper clippings, reports, artwork and memorabilia reflecting Frampton's involvement with these causes. Notably, this series contains posters and essays created by elementary school children in 1989 as part of a city-wide contest promoting awareness around protecting coastal ecosystems.
box 4, folder 5

Abstracts and Articles about Ocean Health 1992

box 4, folder 6

Abstracts and Articles about Ocean Health (Malibu City Copy) 1992

box 7, folder 5

Barrie Nelson Artwork 1990s

box 4, folder 7

"Building the Good Life" Meeting 1992 - 1993

box 7, folder 6

Bumper Stickers 1990s

box 7, folder 7

City of Malibu Resolutions 1992 January - 1993 March

box 4, folder 8

Community Service Award 1991 March 28

box 4, folder 9

Correspondence 1987 - 1992

box 5, folder 1

Defend the Bay Report Book 1996 April

box 5, folder 2

Essay Contest Entries 1989

box 5, folder 3

Floodway Issue 1994 January - 1995 December

box 5, folder 4

Free Keiko Campaign 1993

box 5, folder 5

Jeffrey, Francis 1991 - 1996

box 5, folder 6

Malibu Dolphin Watch 1991 April - 1997 October

box 5, folder 7

Malibu Independence Day Commemorative Journal 1991 March 28

box 5, folder 8

Malibu Regional Sewer System FAQ 1986 November 14

box 5, folder 9

Malibu Resolution and Marine Sanctuary 1988 September - 1992 February

box 5, folder 10

Move the Tower Protest 1993 - 1994

box 6, folder 1

Newspaper Clippings 1987 October - 1999 February

box 7, box 8

Newspaper Clippings (Oversize) 1988 - 1996

box 6, folder 2

Ojai Valley Land Conservancy 2000

box 6, folder 3

Overview of Wetland Opportunities - Malibu Creek Watershed 1989 August

box 6, folder 4

Photographs 1990s - 2000s

box 6, folder 5

Rose Garden at Malibu City Hall 1995 - 1997

box 6, folder 6

Santa Monica Bay Restoration Project - Wetland Inventory and Restoration Potential 1993 January


Save Our Coast Banner 1980s - 1990s

box 6, folder 7

Save Our Coast Logo Masters 1991 - 2007

box 6, folder 8

Save Our Coast Publicity 1988 - 1992

box 7, folder 9

Save Our Coast and Malibu Dolphin Watch Posters 1980s - 1990s

map-case 7

Save Our Coast Posters Made by Children 1989-1990s

box 6, folder 9

Star Magazine Article 1993 April 6

box 6, folder 10

Watershed and Lagoon Pipe 1989 - 1994