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Mission & History

Preserving Our History

The Altadena Historical and Beautification Society

One of the oldest volunteer groups in the community, Altadena Historical Society (AHS) was founded in 1935. As a 501(c)3 organization, we gather, preserve, and share print and digital information about the people, places, and events that have shaped the Altadena community.

The Historical Society’s collections are archived in 800 square feet at the Altadena Community Center and include a vast array of unique historical material. Volunteers run AHS for the benefit of current and future members, residents, scholars, educators, students, writers, and journalists who want to learn more about Altadena’s past.

Your AHS membership dues and donations allow AHS to continue—and expand—our work in the form of quarterly lectures, collection archives, exhibits, research, publishing, community outreach, and more.

Board of Directors

President: Jane Brackman
Vice President: Jean Phillips
Secretary: Deirdre Del Re
Treasurer: Peggy Blue
Minna Adams
Paul Ayers, Consultant
Marlane Forsberg
Timothy Gregory
Kathy Hoskins
Veronica Jones
Eric Mulfinger
Chris O’Malley, Consultant
Sandra Thomas
Daria Topousis, Consultant


  • 1935: Founded as the Altadena Historical and Beautification Society.
  • 1935: Installation of public drinking fountain at 2474 N. Lake, now gone.
  • 1938: Publication of Altadena by Sarah Noble Ives, a 371 page history of the community.
  • 1930’s and 1940’s: Landscaping projects including poppy plantings and palm trees along Fair Oaks
  • 1976: Publication of Altadena’s Golden Years by Robert Peterson, a pictorial history of Altadena’s first 90 years.
  • 2003: Establishment of an office and archive at the Altadena Community Center.
  • 2004: Publication of Altadena: Between Wilderness and City by Michele Zack, a comprehensive written and pictorial history of the entire community.
  • 2020: Altadena Historical Society closes archives during the COVID-19 pandemic but initiates virtual presentations and expands online outreach.
  • 2021: The Echo, our semiannual newsletter, publishes volume 94.
West Altadena in the 1930s.