Historical Society kicks off lecture series with ‘The La Jolla Homefront During World War II’

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By Ruth Varonfakis

La Jolla was a different place during World War II – camouflaged buildings, gun turrets dotting hillsides, and residents cultivating their own vegetables in Victory Gardens.

Concurrent with its popular exhibition of the war years,

“Homefront La Jolla,”

the La Jolla Historical Society will present its spring lecture series, titled

“The La Jolla Homefront During World War II,”

beginning at 5 p.m. Saturday, March 17 in Wisteria Cottage, 780 Prospect St.

Architect and resident of La Jolla during WW II, Robert Mosher, will join speakers Eugene Alfaro, a historian on food production in WW II; Mildred Lee Bell, a retired educator who attended La Jolla High during the war years, and retired educator and actress Dorothy Haven, whose husband trained at Camp Callen (now Torrey Pines Gliderport and Golf Course).

The series will continue with

“Science & Technology on the Homefront,”

5 p.m. Saturday, April 7, featuring noted oceanographer and U.S. Army veteran Walter Munk. The discussion will cover the scientific innovations sparked by the needs of the war effort precipitating a boom in the fields of marine sciences and aeronautics.

The series will wrap up with historian Susan Hasegawa discussing the plight of the Japanese community and what they endured in “Homefront for Japanese Americans,” 5 p.m., Wednesday, May 9.

Each lecture costs $15 for Society members, $20 for the public. For more information or to make reservations, call the La Jolla Historical Society at (858) 459-5335.

Note: The Society’s offices and archives at 7846 Eads Ave. are open to the public from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Monday-Friday. Exhibition galleries in historic Wisteria Cottage at 780 Prospect Street are open noon to 4 p.m. Thursday through Sunday.