Treasures and Tales from Sherman Library’s Collections

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Sherman Library’s Mini Art Makeover

The interior of Sherman Library has had a mini makeover! If you have not visited recently, it is a good time to reacquaint yourself with the library’s art collection. Sherman Library is home to a charming collection of Early California Impressionism and plein-air painting, styles that originated in France, and later were adopted by Laguna’s art colony painters such as William Wendt, Edgar Payne, Frank Cuprien, Anna Hills, and others. While the core of the collection was purchased by Arnold Haskell in the 1970s, over the past 10 years more artwork has been generously donated to expand Sherman Library’s holdings.

Pancho Barnes “Fastest Woman on Earth”

A selection from Sherman Library will inspire this month’s exciting read. In honor of Women’s History Month, we recommend Lauren Kessler’s The Happy Bottom Riding Club: The Life and Times of Pancho Barnes (New York: Random House, 2000).

Florence “Pancho” Barnes (1901-1975) remains one of the greatest 20th century American female characters. She was a California heiress, yet she forged her own path to become one of the first licensed female pilots. She used her aviation talent as a renowned stunt pilot for both silent and sound films. With this success, she formed one of the first unions in Hollywood,

A Real Catch: The Newport Harbor Lady Anglers

…When a woman is serious about fishing, watch out… In 1949, eleven women established the Newport Harbor Lady Anglers to create opportunities for women to practice their fishing skills and to meet other women with similar interests, at a time when fishing clubs were male-only organizations. Founding member Clara Keeler said they created the club because female fishing enthusiasts were growing discontent that their husbands went on fishing trips that women were not permitted to partake in.

Santa Ana: The Heart of Orange County

It is that time of year when Valentine’s Day decorations and advertising pop-up everywhere and the old tradition of exchanging hearts begins. The heart, as a symbol, has been used for many other types of advertising. Interestingly many cities have described their cities as having “heart.” Remember, the “I Love NY” slogan? Well, as a matter of fact, at one time in Orange County, the Santa Ana Chamber of Commerce also used a heart to define their city.