Current Programs & Activities
On Sunday, May 18th, 2014, the Santa Monica History Museum will be hosting Discover the History: Santa Monica’s Gold Coast, a lecture by noted film historian Marc Wanamaker. The lecture will follow the history of the Santa Monica Beach north of the Santa Monica Pier to Santa Monica Canyon. Wanamaker will trace the development of the beach from tents to house to beach clubs on the beach to this day. The social life of the Hollywood Colony, with beach parties hosted by Norma Talmadge, Bebe Daniels and Marion Davies, will be highlighted during this lecture.
Wanamaker has worked in many facets of film production, exhibition, and research for several decades. He is a published historian, lecturer, and teacher who taught film history at UCLA Extension for five years. Bison Archives, a research and informational archive on the history of the motion picture industry as well as a fine art library, was founded by Wanamaker in 1971. He later formed Bison Productions as a film production arm. He co-produced a commercial documentary on Hollywood history entitled, Ticket To Hollywood and worked on more than one hundred documentaries and feature films since 1971. Using his research expertise he has consulted with many museums and archives specializing on the history of the motion picture and television industries. He is an associate with the Los Angeles County Museum, The Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences, California State Library in Sacramento and is a history consultant with over twenty Southern California Historical Societies.
Being a film and Los Angeles area historian, he has presented countless historical programs on many aspects of historical perspective. In recent years he has been past president of the Los Angeles City Historical Society and has been archivist/museum consultant for the Culver City, Westwood, Santa Monica and Beverly Hills Historical Societies. Wanamaker was also President of the Hollywood Heritage Organization and one of the curators for the Hollywood Heritage Museum. He has been working on production and research projects for all the major and minor film and television studios in Los Angeles and New York as well as consulting on film and television related archives around the country. Marc Wanamaker is also a writer working freelance on book, newspaper, magazine and film projects, having written for Architectural Digest, Los Angeles Magazine, Los Angeles Times, American Cinematographer, Hollywood Reporter, Daily Variety among others and is currently working on an encyclopedia of the American Film Studios and has authored and contributed to several books.
Discover the History: The Gold Coast will take place on May 18th, 2014, from 2pm – 4pm at the Santa Monica History Museum, 1350 7th St, Santa Monica, CA 90401. Admission to the lecture is FREE to the public. Doors open at 1:30 pm and parking is available in the adjacent parking garage. Refreshments will be served following the lecture.
For more information, contact Danielle at 310-395-2290, firstname.lastname@example.org
In honor of Women’s History Month and in collaboration with the City of Santa Monica’s Commission on the Status of Women, the Santa Monica History Museum is celebrating Santa Monica Women of World War II with our Discover the History program. Immeasurable Contributions will include a short lecture and focus exhibit on the women who joined Douglas Aircraft in droves to build, test, and deliver necessary aircraft, patrolled the beaches on civil defense patrols, spearheaded and supported war bond efforts, served in service organizations that provided entertainment and goods to the troops, and even joined the armed services.
In recognition of Jane Newcomb Whiting’s service to our country as a member of the WAVES during World War II, the Santa Monica History Museum is honoring her as a part of our March Discover the History lecture series. Whiting joined the Navy as a member of the WAVES and served as a link trainer instructor for pilots learning navigational skills. Born in Santa Monica, she is the daughter of Walter and Enid Newcomb, who operated the east portion of the Santa Monica Pier for 30 years beginning in 1943, including the Carousel and the La Monica Ballroom. She is a founding and life member of the Santa Monica History Museum.
The celebration of women’s Immeasurable Contributions to World War II will take place on March 16th, 2014, from 2pm – 4pm at the Santa Monica History Museum, 1350 7th St, Santa Monica, CA 90401. Admission to the lecture is FREE to the public. Doors open at 1:30 pm and parking is available in the adjacent parking garage. Refreshments will be served following the lecture.
Special thanks to for providing the refreshments in honor of all of the Doughnut Dollies during World War II.