Archival Miscellany

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Archival Miscellany (& forensic hunt!) 

by Denise Sallee, MPC Library Archivist

A School Bus for MPC– really?

In August of 1950 the Monterey Peninsula Herald reported “Peninsula College Enrollment Zooms; Bus Acquired to Pick Up Students.” The article goes on to say that MPC’s enrollment of Santa Cruz and Watsonville area students greatly increased and the administration purchased the new bus to help these students as well as serve other campus activities. 

school bus

A Science Class circa 1950

This looks like a pre-med course, possibly Zoology which was a requirement for transferring.  Another clue that this was a pre-med course is that there are only men being instructed. Photographs provide valuable documentation for the study of cultural and social life at a given time. As the saying goes “A picture is worth a thousand words.” 

circa 1950 Science class_doc


Bird’s Eye View of MPC 

Try guessing the date this aerial photo was taken by seeing what is there and what is not. For instance, the large hotel at our main entrance was built after MPC opened. Find out when it was built and you will have your first dating (hint – it was originally the Royal Inn). Look for more clues.

Aerial view of campus_doc

Life Before Online Registration

MPC students from the 60’s stood in very long lines each semester to register for classes. What can you see in this photo to help identify the date (narrowing it down from a general 1960’s) and to identify the location on campus where the line formed?

registration 1960's_doc

Curating an MPC student art show in 1971

The back of this photograph reads “Art Show Hanging Dec 1971.”  The MPC student newspaper EL Yanqui, for the year 1971, does not have an article that refers to an art exhibit. However, there is an article dated December 18, 1970: “Student Center Exhibit: Brilliant Colors in Student Art Display.”  The photograph shows a large white  wall and the article states: “The student painting at MPC’s Contemporary I and II classes add a dazzling, colorful brightness to an otherwise glaring, sterile white wall.”  So, perhaps the photograph was dated incorrectly. This happens all the time. Or, perhaps the date is correct and the El Yanqui did not cover the exhibit. More evidence from the archives is needed. 

1971 art show prep_doc