Guide to the Malaga Cove Star Collection 008

Marjeanne Blinn, Jeremy G. Berry-Cahn and Monique Leahey Sugimoto
Cindy Miller
Palos Verdes Library District, Peninsula Center Library. Local History Center.
701 Silver Spur Road
Rolling Hills Estates, California 90274

Language of Material: English
Contributing Institution: Palos Verdes Library District, Peninsula Center Library. Local History Center.
Title: Malaga Cove Star Collection
Creator: Damon, James (Jimmy), Jr., 1926-2012
Identifier/Call Number: 008
Physical Description: .5 Cubic Feet .5 legal size document box
Date (inclusive): 1939-1942; 1968
Abstract: Collection includes issues of an entirely self-published and edited weekly newspaper created by 13 year old James "Jimmy" Damon, and three other local youths. The newspaper ran from approximately 1938 to 1942 and reported on both local and international issues. The Star provides an interesting perspective of the life on the Palos Verdes Peninsula during an important period of U.S. history.
Physical Location: Local History Center, Open Shelving Unit 1

Conditions Governing Access

Open for research. Advance notice required for access. Contact the Local History Center for access information.

Scope and Contents

Collection includes original issues of the weekly Malaga Cove Star newspaper. Issues run between two and four pages and are on 8.5 x 11 mimeographed paper. Content includes articles, advertisements, and community announcements. Collection also includes two pieces of correspondence: one from Jimmy Damon soliciting subscriptions in 1940 and another from Jimmy Damon written in 1968 to the librarian of the Palos Verdes Library District in response to a request for extant issues.


Arranged chronologically by issue date. Two letters filed separately.

Biographical / Historical

James "Jimmy" Graham Damon Jr. was born in Providence, Rhode Island on September 17, 1926. Damon moved to the Palos Verdes Peninsula where he attended the Chadwick School from 1938 and graduated with the class of 1944. Damon and three other boys, Bob Reid, Peter Cullins, and Jim Ford, together started printing the Malaga Cove Star newspaper. Soon after it started, Damon assumed the positions of editor, managing editor, advertising manager, printer, reporter, staff artist, and president. He began advertising the newspaper as “Palos Verdes’ Only One-man Paper."
An aspiring journalist and protégé of John Knezevich editor of the Palos Verdes News, one of the other local papers, Damon's weekly newspaper attracted many local subscribers, as well as some from other parts of the United States.
Local articles include news of burglaries, the arrival of a new fire truck for the City of Palos Verdes Estates, school activities, movies playing at local theaters, new library books and interesting places to visit on the Palos Verdes Peninsula. One article covers a donation drive to get a drinking fountain for the thirsty dogs that roamed the city's plaza.
In 1940, Damon’s articles focus on the progression of the war in Europe and America’s preparation to enter the war. The November issue includes an article on Franklin Roosevelt’s re-election to a fourth term as President. Issues after the bombing of Pearl Harbor in December 1941 provide a picture of how the war affected life in Palos Verdes, including the passage of a blackout ordinance with jail time or fines for violators, registration for sugar rationing books, and efforts by the Boy Scouts to collect scrap metal and grow victory gardens.
Damon left the Palos Verdes Peninsula in 1944. After earning a degree in Political Science from Yale University in 1947, he returned to California and worked as an operations director for KRCA-TV. In 1963, Damon accepted a position with IBM World Trade Corporation where he managed its motion picture and broadcast services. He worked with IBM until his retirement in 1997.
In his 1968 letter, Damon commented that Palos Verdes was his favorite community. Damon passed away at the age of 85 in Providence, Rhode Island.

Preferred Citation

[Name of item], Malaga Cove Star Collection (Collection 008). Local History Center, Peninsula Center Library, Palos Verdes Library District, Rolling Hills Estates, CA.

Conditions Governing Use

The majority of the materials in this collection are fragile and deteriorating. Researchers must use reference copies.

Processing Information

Collection processed by Local History Center volunteers, Cindy Miller, Marjeanne Blinn and Jeremy G. Berry-Cahn.

Funding Source

Funding for collection processing was provided in part by an Institute of Museum and Library Services grant (#40-8615).

Subjects and Indexing Terms

Community newspapers
Student publications
World War II
Damon, James (Jimmy), Jr., 1926-2012