Programs & Events

Portal-book-coverPortal: San Francisco’s Ferry Building and the Reinvention of American Cities, with Jon Wiener
Presented by the California Historical Society
Live webinar on October 24, 2023, at 5:30 p.m. PDT.
In this talk, architectural critic John King discusses his book “Portal: San Francisco’s Ferry Building and the Reinvention of American Cities.” King’s narrative spans the rise and fall and rebirth of the Ferry Building, a 125-year-long saga that explores the tensions of tourism and development—and the threat that sea level rise poses to a landmark that remains vital today.
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For past programs presented by the California Historical Society, be sure to visit our Past Programs page and YouTube channel.

California Rare Book School at North Baker Research Library

American Archives Month
Various locations across California
October 1 – October 31, 2023
During the month of October, American Archives Month is intended to raise public awareness about the importance of historic documents and records. Below are some of the upcoming activities. Check your local libraries and historical societies for more information.

18th Annual Los Angeles Archives Bazaar
A one-stop opportunity to interact with dozens of archives, from large institutions to private collectors. This year’s focus is on the rich culinary history of Southern California. Saturday, October 28, 2023, 10:00–3:00 p.m. // laassubject.org

California Archives Crawl 2023 in Sacramento
An annual event during which dozens of archives and special collections libraries open their doors to the general public to view treasures, visit with archivists, and go on special behind-the-scenes tours. A shuttle bus will take “crawlers” between locations and prizes will be awarded to winners of a scavenger hunt. Saturday October 7, 2023, 10:00–4:00 p.m. // saclibrary.org

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Día de los Muertos
Various locations across California
October 25 – November 2, 2023
Día de los Muertos, or Day of the Dead, is a time to remember and honor those who have departed. While Mexican American communities have celebrated the Day of the Dead for hundreds of years in the United States, the steady rise in awareness of the holiday in the United States can be traced back to Chicano artists and activists—like the Royal Chican0 Air Force—who launched large scale, public events during the holiday seeking to create a new political and cultural consciousness among people of Mexican descent in the United States.

Olvera Street in Los Angeles, a historic monument in the oldest part of Los Angeles created in 1930 “to preserve and present the customs and trades of early California.” // discoverolverastreet.com

Hollywood Forever cemetery in Los Angeles, the oldest memorial park in Hollywood dating back to 1899. // ladayofthedead.com

29th Annual Día de los Muertos Community Celebration in Oakland, at the Oakland Museum of California, on Sunday, October 22, 2023 11 am–4 pm. // museumca.org

Day of the Dead San Diego, San Diego, held in San Diego’s Old Town which is considered the “birthplace” of California as it is the site of the first permanent Spanish settlement in California. // dayofthedeadsd.com

Day of the Dead Festival of Altars in San Francisco, sponsored by the Marigold Project, the making and viewing of traditional, contemporary, or experimental altars. // dayofthedeadsf.org