spans the years 1933 to 2001, and includes DeMars' personal papers, records from his private
practice and professional career, and materials generated by the firms DeMars & Reay,
DeMars & Wells, and DeMars & Maletic.
Vernon Armand DeMars was born in San Francisco, California, in 1908. He earned his Bachelor
of Arts in Architecture from the University of California, Berkeley, in 1931. After jobs
with the National Park Service and travel in the U.S. and Europe, DeMars worked in the
offices of Clarence Mayhew (1935-36) and John Reid Jr (1935) and then went to work for the
Federal Resettlement Administration for two years (1936-37). He spent a year in charge of
planning and design of a small housing development company which was unsuccessful followed
by six months employment as Head Draftsman for the S.F. Bay Exposition Company working on
buildings for the Golden Gate International Competition. Between 1938 and 1943 he served as
the Architect for the USDA Farm Security Administration’s regional office in San Francisco.
The FSA provided housing to migrant farm workers, planned and built rural camps, schools,
clinics, and community centers, and constructed wartime housing for over 7000 military
personnel. During his tenure with the FSA, DeMars collaborated with landscape architects
Burton Cairns and Garret Eckbo, and planners Fran Violich and Corwin Mocine, to make lasting
contributions to the field of planning and low-cost housing design. Projects included the
Farm Workers’ Center at Yuba City, California, the Cooperative Farm and Workers’ Housing at
Chandler, Arizona, and the Woodville Farm Workers’ Center near Porterville, California.
62 Cubic Feet
15 cartons, 16 manuscript boxes, 6 flat boxes, 1 shoebox, 33
tubes, 77 flat files, 10 models
All requests for permission to publish, reproduce, or quote from materials in the
collection should be discussed with the Curator.
Collection is open for research. Many of the Environmental Design Archives collections are
stored offsite and advance notice is required for use.