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Way Back When in Santa Barbara, Mesa Memories, & Movies Way Back When


Image: from the Edson Smith collection, courtesy of the Santa Barbara Public Library

It's Show Time!


Back in July 1914, the newly constructed Recreation Center on Carrillo and Anacapa streets was getting ready to open its 850-seat auditorium. The seating seemed to be the star of the show, according to one article in the local paper. "The chairs are roomy and do not shake or collapse . . . Neither do the chairs squeak, and they are tasteful."


The Recreation Center was indeed well built. It would survive the 1925 earthquake, and moreover served as an emergency shelter in the quake's aftermath.

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