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Guide to the California Building Construction Records MS 255
MS 255  
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Collection Details
Table of contents What's This?
  • Conditions Governing Access
  • Conditions Governing Use
  • Processing Information
  • Preferred Citation
  • Immediate Source of Acquisition
  • Biographical / Historical Notes
  • Scope and Content
  • Arrangement

  • Title: The California Building Construction Records
    Identifier/Call Number: MS 255
    Contributing Institution: San Diego History Center Document Collection
    Language of Material: English
    Physical Description: 0.25 Linear feet (1 box)
    Date (inclusive): 1913-1927
    Abstract: The collection pertains to the construction and maintenance of the California Building built for the Panama-California Exposition in 1915.
    creator: San Diego Museum of Man.

    Conditions Governing Access

    This collection is open for research.

    Conditions Governing Use

    The San Diego History Center (SDHC) holds the copyright to any unpublished materials. SDHC Library regulations do apply.

    Processing Information

    Collection processed by Lauren Rasmussen on June 4, 2012.
    Collection processed as part of grant project supported by the Council on Library and Information Resources (CLIR) with generous funding from The Andrew Mellon Foundation.

    Preferred Citation

    The California Building Construction Records, MS 255, San Diego History Center Document Collection, San Diego, CA.

    Immediate Source of Acquisition

    Accession number 950125.

    Biographical / Historical Notes

    The California Building, the current home of the San Diego Museum of Man, was designed by architect Bertram Goodhue for the 1915 Panama-California Exposition. Now one of the most famous buildings in San Diego, the California Building is an icon of the Spanish Colonial Revival architectural style pioneered by Goodhue in his building designs for the Exposition. It was one of only four buildings built for the fair that were meant to be permanent.
    The Exposition’s largest exhibit, “The Story of Man Through the Ages,” was housed in the California Building. After the Exposition drew to a close in 1916, a group of San Diegans led by George Marston formed the San Diego Museum Association to maintain the building and permanently retain the anthropological collections. In 1942 the building’s name was changed to the” Museum of Man”, and officially changed again in 1978 to the “San Diego Museum of Man.”

    Scope and Content

    The materials in the collection are administrative documents related to the original construction, ongoing maintenance, and further renovation of the California Building from 1913, two years before the Exposition opened, through 1927. The majority of the collection consists of financial records, including bills, invoices, and bank statements. Business contracts, correspondence, and construction reports are also included. There are also several documents related to the funding of the California Building, including a newspaper clipping and a senate bill passed by the California legislator.


    Collection materials are arranged by subject.

    Subjects and Indexing Terms

    Allen, Frank Phillips, Jr.
    California Building Association.
    California State Building Commission.
    California State Park Commission.
    California. State Board of Control.
    Goodhue, Bertram Grosvenor, 1869-1924
    Hewett, Edgar L. (Edgar Lee), 1865-1946
    Ingle Manufacturing Co..
    Marston Company Store.
    Marston, George White, 1850-1946
    Mead and Requa.
    O'Halloran, Thomas
    Panama-California Exposition (1915 : San Diego, Calif.).
    Panama-California International Exposition (1916 : San Diego, Calif.).
    San Diego Chamber of Commerce.
    San Diego Electric Railway.
    San Diego Museum of Man.
    San Diego Museum.
    Southern Trust and Commerce Bank.
    Spreckels Companies.
    Standard Oil Company.
    Wurster Construction Co..
    Balboa Park (San Diego, Calif.)
    Business records
    California Building (San Diego, Calif.)
    Construction projects
    Design and construction
    Exhibition buildings
    Financial statement notes
    Financial statements
    San Diego (Calif.)