Carlsbad Historical Society Newsletter Q2 2014

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— Carlsbad resident Joan Kindle has served as a volunteer curator for nearly 30 years at Leo Carrillo Ranch Historic Park, and for that she has been honored by the California Parks and Recreation Society.

Kindle and her late husband, Alan Kindle, discovered the ranch when they moved to Carlsbad in 1985. Originally known as “Los Quiotes,” the rancho was established in 1937 by Leo Carrillo, an actor best known for his role as Pancho in the 1950s television series “The Cisco Kid.” Carrilo died in 1961, and the core remnant of the ranch was owned by the city. The initial plan was to restore the ranch’s old structures.

The Kindles took interest in learning about the former Hollywood actor and the role of the ranch in Carlsbad’s history. Former Mayor Bud Lewis asked Kindle to become the park’s volunteer curator, which she agreed to accept.

“I said to myself ‘don’t tell the mayor you don’t even know what a curator is,’ ” Kindle recalls. “And I didn’t want to disappoint him so I thought if I could figure out a way to do it, I’ll do it.”

Kindle became an advocate for the park and its restoration, and was offered artifacts that reflected Carrillo’s life.

The Kindles established the Carrillo Ranch Trust Fund to receive monetary donations and memorabilia displayed at the ranch.

Kindle also teamed up with city staffers to research, prepare and submit an application to list Leo Carrillo Ranch on the National Register of Historic Places. The status was granted in 1992.

“I’ve spent 29 years as a citizen of Carlsbad and just feel privileged to be able to walk beside city staff and city leaders as they encourage their citizens to help them with projects like this,” Kindle said. “You feel an enormous sense of accomplishment when they invite you in the door and you do something like this.”

The preservation effort peaked in 2003 when Leo Carrillo Ranch Historic Park opened to the public.

The California Parks and Recreation Society District 12, which includes San Diego and Imperial counties, recognized Kindle for her 30-year contribution to preserving the ranch on March 26.

Leo Carrillo Ranch Historic Park is open 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. Tuesdays through Saturdays at 6200 Flying Leo Carrillo Lane. For information, call (760) 476-1042.

Pictured, from left, are Chris Hazeltine, city of Carlsbad Parks and Recreation director; Joan Kindle; and Mick Calarco, city of Carlsbad Parks and Recreation special projects manager.

Janelle Werthmann
Union Tribune

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Our Newsletter for Q1 2014


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Luther Gage House Lecture and Tour – March 16, 2pm

Carlsbad Historical Society

2014 Lectures

Luther Gage House

Lecture and Tour

 “Nurseryman Luther Gage came to Carlsbad from Los Angeles in 1921 and helped develop the flower industry into a strong economic base. After his 1923 marriage, Gage built the spacious brick house that is now the center of the Monterey condominium complex (architect not known).”

Meet on the back patio of the Luther Gage House, 3080 Lincoln Street at 2pm.

Approximately 40 minute talk by Jo Ellen Guthrie on Luther and Olive Gage’s lives, and the impact they had on Carlsbad.   We are also planning to have a few folks present who personally knew the Gages to make a few brief comments.

Refreshments and Q. &A. time while I take groups of 10 or so through the house.

The event will be over by about 4pm.

 Gage House / Monterey Condominiums

3080 Lincoln Street

Meet on the back patio

Sunday March 16, at 2pm


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The Navajo Code Talkers – Sunday February 23, at 2pm

Carlsbad Historical Society

2014 Lectures

The Navajo Code Talkers

By Gregory Maestas

There were approximately 400-500 Native Americans in the United States Marine Corps whose primary job was the transmission of secret tactical messages. Code talkers transmitted these messages over military telephone or radio communications nets using formal or informally developed codes built upon their native languages. Their service improved communications in terms of speed of encryption at both ends in front line operations during World War II.


Mr. Maestas is vice-chairman of the Navajo Code Talker Memorial Foundation in Mesa California.

The history of these events was covered in the movie Windtalkers, a 2002 American war film directed and produced by John Woo, and starring Nicolas Cage and Christian Slater.


Carlsbad by the Sea Retirement Community

Sunday February 23, at 2pm

South meeting room


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A History of Carlsbad, Compiled by the Friends of the Library, uploaded

The “little green book”, the first history of Carlsbad, by Jack Harmon, has been uploaded to our website. Thank you to the Friends of the Carlsbad Library for making this available for searches.


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Newsletter for the 4th Quarter of 2013

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