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La Jolla History Timeline

  • 1850 - Lands of La Jolla incorporated as part of the City of San Diego
  • 1887 - Auction of lots in first La Jolla Park subdivision; considered as founding year of La Jolla
  • 1893 - Opening of La Jolla Park Hotel
  • 1894 - Railroad extended to La Jolla from San Diego; La Jolla Post Office established; Reading Room opened; Anna Held arrived in La Jolla and created Green Dragon Colony
  • 1895 - First La Jolla Village Improvement Society organized
  • 1896 - Ellen Browning Scripps buys two lots on the ocean side of Prospect Street and builds her first home
  • 1897 - Library Association of La Jolla formed
  • 1899 - Barber Tract development begins (first known as Neptunia); first telephone lines installed
  • 1904 - Wisteria Cottage built
  • 1905 - Marine Biological Association organized, later Scripps Institution of Oceanography
  • 1906 - Ground broken for new bathhouse at the Cove; first La Jolla newspaper is published
  • 1908-09 - Architect Irving Gill designs a re-model of Wisteria Cottage for Virginia Scripps
  • 1910 - The Bishop's School is built
  • 1911 - Electricity introduced into La Jolla
  • 1913 - Opening of Colonial Inn (Grande Colonial La Jolla)
  • 1914 - La Jolla Woman's Club is built
  • 1915 - Arsonist sets fire to several La Jolla buildings, including Ellen Browning Scripps' house; work begins on new home designed by architect Irving Gill
  • 1918 - Scripps Memorial Hospital opens (first known as the Sanitarium); paving of La Jolla streets begins
  • 1921 - Virginia Scripps dies (April 28)
  • 1924 - Electric railroad starts running; Casa de Manana opens as resort hotel; street lights introduced
  • 1926 - La Valencia opens; Balmer School started La Jolla Country Club takes shape; The Muirlands development begins
  • 1927 - La Jolla Beach and Yacht Club formed (now La Jolla Beach and Tennis Club)
  • 1931 - Childrens' Pool breakwater built
  • 1932 - Ellen Browning Scripps dies (August 3)
  • 1940 - Art Center organized in former home of Ellen Browning Scripps
  • 1941 - Camp Callan established at Torrey Pines Gliderport with start of World War II
  • 1942 - Wisteria Cottage becomes the Balmer School, later La Jolla Country Day School (until 1961)
  • 1944 - First stop signs erected at Girard and Torrey Pines Road
  • 1947 - La Jolla Playhouse founded by Gregory Peck, Dorothy McGuire, and Mel Ferrer
  • 1948 - The Cove movie theater opens
  • 1956 - White Sands begins operations as a retirement home
  • 1960 - University of California San Diego campus established in La Jolla
  • 1960 - La Jolla School of Arts and Crafts formed
  • 1963-64 - La Jolla Historical Society founded
  • 1964 - Salk Institute built 
  • 1967 - La Jolla Community Plan adopted by San Diego City Council
  • 1970 - Underwater Park created between the Cove and northern city limit
  • 1974 - University Towne Center shopping mall opens
  • 1983 - BLOB ("Ban Large Office Buildings") organized to oppose large structures in the built environment
  • 1987 - La Jolla celebrates its centennial
  • 1996 - Architect Robert Venturi designs an update to the former home of Ellen Browning Scripps, originally designed in 1916 by architect Irving Gill, as the Museum of Contemporary Art San Diego
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