Monthly Archive: March 2011

Mar 30

Highway 1 closed by mudslides south of Big Sur

Construction crews work along Highway 1 in September of 1934. The road officially opened in 1937. Hewn from the living rock of the Santa Lucia Range, Highway 1 exists at the whim of nature. Rain saturated earth sags as gravity pulls the heavy hillsides inexorably to the ocean along with rocks and boulders. The road …

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Mar 28

Hard times at Camp Roberts

Undated photo of pontoon bridge training at Camp Roberts. Likely from the 1960s or 70s. ©The Tribune Boom town or ghost town, Camp Roberts has seen it all. It was one of the largest military training facilities in the world with a parade ground that spans 14 football fields. At its peak at the end …

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Mar 25

Heavy rains in 1958 flood Foothill Blvd.

Flooding along Foothill Blvd. near Los Osos Valley Rd. 2-19-1958 Photo courtesy History Center of San Luis Obispo County (the photo was originally produced for The T-T, it also has a Free Library stamp on back.) There are times when the rain never seems to end. Having seen times when water was being rationed and …

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Mar 22

Cal Poly aerial photo about 1967

Aerial photo hanging on the wall at the Cal Poly administration building in 1967. Background when Robert E. Kennedy was named president. Here is an aerial look at Cal Poly from the mid-1960s. Most of the parking lots and athletic fields have now been converted to buildings. Old military surplus buildings are still in use …

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Mar 20

1878 Central Coast Tsunami

San Luis Obispo Tribune, November 23, 1878 Tsunami story A wave big enough to come over the sandspit in Morro Bay? Really? Pat Pemberton recently wrote a fascinating overview of the history of tsunamis on the Central Coast. I wanted to go back and pull original newspapers and see what they said at the time …

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Mar 18

Japanese nuclear experts tour Diablo Canyon power plant

Aerial view of Diablo Canyon Nuclear Power Plant late in the construction phase. David Middlecamp 10-26-1982 Until the recent Tohoku earthquake and subsequent tsunami the most catastrophic nuclear accident went by the name of Chernobyl. The Ukrainian power plant experienced a series of explosions on April 26, 1986 after a systems test went bad. Human …

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Mar 17

Atascadero State Hospital charts brain waves

Two of 19 electrodes measure an Atascadero State Hospital patient's brain waves via an EEG. published 12-23-1965 ©The Tribune The mind is a still a largely uncharted landscape. Poets and scientists explore this unknown territory. Walt Whitman penned "I Sing the Body Electric" in his 1900 era book of poems titled "Leaves of Grass". Until …

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Mar 14

Orcutt Road railroad crossing

Orcutt Rd. Railroad crossing with Southern Pacific train. 5-26-1969 ©The Tribune Two transportation modes and two slices of time intersect in these images. In 1969 a northbound Southern Pacific engine rolls into town at Orcutt Road, then a rural two lane with farm land on on one side and industrial warehouse businesses on the other. …

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Mar 12

Tsunami warnings not always heeded

Telegram-Tribune front page after the Great Alaska Earthquake, March 30, 1964 To some the tsunami watch called for the West Coast might have seemed like overkill, but residents of Crescent City in Northern California know otherwise. About 580 miles north of San Luis Obispo on Highway 101, residents had bitter experience when they ignored warnings. …

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Mar 09

Newt Gingrich for President

Rep. Newt Gingrich, R-Ga., standing, talks politics with Pat Mullin of Pismo Beach and others at a GOP dinner at the Madonna Inn. ©Robert Dyer/Telegram-Tribune Published 7-7-1989 Big ideas, big controversy. For a guy named Newt, he likes a big fishbowl. According to Babynamer.com the name originates in Old English, "neowe tun" meaning new town, …

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