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Way Back When in Santa Barbara & Mesa Memories

"MESA MEMORIES" MONDAY

"MESA MEMORIES" MONDAY - La Mesa Park History
The history of this city park goes back to 1856 when the United States government purchased 28 acres, and built a lighthouse. Some of the grounds around the lighthouse were used by the lighthouse keepers and their family as vegetable gardens in this (then) remote location. (Shoreline Drive would not be built for almost 100 years, and Meigs Road did not connect to Carrillo Street, so it was a long round-about trip into town.) The original lighthouse was destroyed in the 1925 earthquake, and another was later built. The lighthouse was accessed by a road leading down from Cliff Drive. People who lived on the Mesa in the 1960s remember when Meigs Road only went as far south as Elise Way, the road on the south side of the Mesa Village Shops.
In the 1950s, the city acquired 6.8 acres to be used for the park, and 8.2 more acres became the site of Washington School. La Mesa Park was formally dedicated in 1957. Older residents remember going to the summer camp that was held at the park, or swinging over the creek on ropes that hung from the large trees. (Photo: Betsy J. Green)

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