I grew up in the Montclair District of Oakland, CA. I attended Thornhill Elementary School, Montera Junior High, Skyline High School, and spent some time at Merritt College. I lived in Montclair until I was a young adult, and since then, I have lived by Lake Merritt, in the Fruitvale District, on Piedmont Ave, the King Estates Area, and now the Laurel District
Since going on an Oakland Heritage Alliance Tour of the Fernwood Neighborhood in the Montclair District of Oakland in about 1984, I have been an Oakland history buff ever since. On that tour, I learned a train (Sacramento Northern) ran through Montclair in the early 1900s and that people lived the area as early as the 1860s — been hooked ever since. Since then, I have spent a lot of time looking into Montclair's history, and I have learned a lot. I feel this will be the best way to get it out of my head and onto paper. I hope you will enjoy history as much as I do.
In 2018 I started this blog because I collected so much information on Oakland's history and couldn't wait to share. Posting in Facebook groups isn't the best outlet for me. I love sharing what I know and reading what others share. But things get lost on Facebook.
With my dear friend Phil, I got started, and I was off and running. It should be easy, I say to myself, because, in my mind, I had already laid out actual pages and everything I wanted to say.
But it wasn't.
I tend to get bogged down in the details. I worry about getting my facts correct. It is hard for me to find a happy medium between too much and too little. So, this is a work in progress, so bear with me.
Please check out my blog A Bit of History - Oakland Unfolded
My area of interest in the history of the Montclair District. There is more to learn. I have also spent a lot of time researching the real estate developments, subdivisions or tracts. I love looking at old maps of Oakland.
I have created a database of photos taken by Eston A Cheney - who created a treasure of early 20th-century real estate photographs. Many developers hired Cheney to photograph new residential tracts and commercial buildings in the rapidly growing East Bay in 1910 and 1920s. I hoped in creating this database that I could figure out his numbering system. Most of his photos only have a number on them. I plan on sharing this sometime in the future.
The numbers that start with the letter C - Oakland Chamber of Commerce?
The numbers that start with letter H - Havens Real Estate Co.?