How will we know it’s us without our past?

John Steinbeck   Grapes of Wrath

Current & Upcoming Exhibitions

LJHS exhibitions are sponsored in part by ArtWorks San Diego

Notice of March 17, 2020:  LJHS Exhibition Galleries and Archive Temporarily Closed

The La Jolla Historical Society will temporarily close to the public starting March 18, and will continue to be guided by recommendations of the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) and California, California Department of Public Health, and San Diego County Health and Human Services Agency.  The Wisteria Cottage galleries are closed, as is access to the public for archival research.  Our goal is to limit social contact to help curb the rapidly evolving COVID-19 crisis.

With our doors temporarily closed, your access to La Jolla history remains open—visit us on this website, and follow us on Facebook and Instagram.

During these uncertain and disruptive times, your support for the Society is more vital than ever, and we ask that you consider making an early donation for 2020 by contributing now.  Your support will help us navigate this crisis and provide a bridge to a time when our exhibitions, educational programming, research accessibility, and community events return to stability. 

You can make a donation on this website under "SUPPORT."  Your generosity is immensely appreciated! 

In addition, we want to hear from you about how this historic event is affecting you, your neighbors, and our community. Please share your stories by emailing us at info@lajollahistory.org.  We will collate and archive your stories, make them available to future historians and researchers, and they will become part of community history!

Look for additional notices regarding our spring and summer activities—we will keep you updated as the situation develops.



Tijuana 1964: The Photography of Harry Crosby

EXTENDED THROUGH September 6, 2020

Harry Crosby moved to La Jolla as a boy in 1935.  In the 1950s, he had 12-year career as a science teacher at La Jolla High School, then pursued a second career in photography and history.  One of his early assignments was to photograph Tijuana, where he discovered and recorded the vibrant life of the city and neighborhoods beyond common tourist areas.  The rich photographic images he created of Tijuana’s urban and human landscapes chronicles community life and daily events. Tijuana 1964: the Photography of Harry Crosby presents an exhibition of original photographs from the period, crossing the international border to explore the shops, arcades, street vendors, fashions, vehicles, curios, churches, cemeteries, and diverse urban neighborhoods of the bustling Mexican city more than a half-century ago.  Curated by Melanie Showalter.

Funding for this exhibition generously provided by Sandy and Dave Erickson, Margie and John H. Warner Jr., the Florence Riford Fund of the San Diego Foundation, and ArtWorks San Diego.

The Society is immensely grateful for loans from the photographic collection and for the support of the Instituto Municipal de Arte y Cultura (IMAC), the Museo de Historia de Tijuana (MUHTi), and the Archivo Histórico de Tijuana (AHT); for additional materials from the Crosby Baja Collection at the University of California, San Diego; and for the support of the Institute for Regional Studies of the Californias at San Diego State University.

Celebrating the 140th Anniversary of the Mexican Consulate in San Diego

Tijuana 1964: The Photography of Harry Crosby is part of the celebration of the 140th Anniversary of the Mexican Consulate in San Diego.  The Consulate has served for a century and a half to create connections and intersections for our countries, building bridges between people, cultures, and economies. Congratulations to Consul General Carlos González-Gutiérrez and the staff at the Mexican Consulate in San Diego!



Trifecta: Art, Science, Patron

September 26, 2020 – January 17, 2021


Local artists and Salk Institute scientists collaborate in this interdisciplinary project that was inspired by the visionary gift of the Jacobs family. The Joan Klein and Irwin Mark Jacobs Senior Scientist Endowed Chair Challenge began in 2008 to encourage donors to establish endowed chairs in support of Salk scientists for their outstanding contributions to biological research. For every $2 million in donor contributions toward a chair, the Jacobs added $1 million to achieve the $3 million required for a full endowment. The Jacobs Challenge is responsible for 18 of the 31 chaired positions to date. The science that is funded today makes future discoveries possible and the patrons who make this research a reality are the stewards of tomorrow. To celebrate this gift to posterity, local artists have been paired with many of these honored scientists to create this exhibition. Through their artwork, the artists share their visions inspired by this cutting-edge research funded by philanthropic patrons of the community. This trifecta of artist, scientist, and patron pays homage to major contributors of this vibrant community and inspires a better future. 

Curated by Chi Essary

Major funding for this project generously provided by the Ray Thomas Edwards Foundation with additional support from Weston Anson.  Institutional support provided by the City of San Diego Commission for Arts and Culture and by the Members of the La Jolla Historical Society. The Society is immensely grateful to the Salk Institute for Biological Studies for their support and participation in this project.