GREAT old photos of Seal Beach from Founder’s Day

September 10, 2010 by  
Filed under Events

Wow…and Wow again!

The Seal Beach Founder’s Day website is fantastic. As is the blog of  Michael Dobkins! It includes a group of old photographs,silent movies of the Pacific & Electric Red Car Service training film.  (“Hey conductor help all the ladies…not just the pretty ones!”) and tons of old photos of  the beginning of our town.

Mike Dobkins has the most extensive collection of Seal Beach photos that Libby Applegate, one of the people who created Founder’s Day said she’d ever seen.  Dobkins is also on the publicity committee for the upcoming 95th Birthday celebration (Oct 10, 2010)

Today’s post answers the  question, “what do The Beatles, the Memphis Belle B-17 Flying Fortress, and Clancy’s Saloon have in common?”

Go to or

You will see tags for  1948, 1949, 1950, 1951, Clancy’s Saloon, Mamie’s, Seal Beach, Seal Beach Pharmacy and much, much more.

This blog is a link from the founder’s website (built by Alison Cotter a member of the publicity committee.)   More people are following Mike’s blog because he has up to date information for Seal Beach Founder’s Day.  They are alsoon  on Facebook and Twitter.

They are presenting a slide show at the Marina Community Center on Wednesday evening, October 27, 7:30 – 9:30 PM.  Admission is FREE

Since last Friday, the site has posted two images of the Seal Beach Pharmacy that once occupied the current storefront of Clancy’s Saloon at 111 Main Street.    While researching for a future  post, Libby Applegate stumbled across a matchbook cover for another business that once ran at the same location.  If you were in the mood for better bar-b-q, cocktails, and shuffleboard, Mamie’s was the place to go in the late forties and early fifties.

What is interesting about this matchbook cover is the illustration of the buxom babe preparing to go fishing by charmingly asking us if we’ll bait her hook.  The signature reads “PETTY,” who was George Petty, a well-known cheesecake artist working in the Albert Vargas style.  He did a series of pin-ups called “The Petty Girls” for Esquire magazine from 1933-1956.  His glamorous gals were reproduced extensively as nose art on American World War II airplanes, including the famous “Memphis Belle” that was featured in a wartime documentary and feature film.  You can find an image of a Petty Girl in the crowd on the album cover for Sgt. Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band.  And between 1948 and 1951, George Petty drew five sets of girlie matchbook covers for the Monarch Match Company in San Jose to be used on business matchbooks across the country, including Seal Beach’s very own Mamie’s.

One of the fascinating things about local history is how even minor ephemera like a matchbook cover can lead you far away from your original subject.

To learn more about George Petty, visit The Pin-Up Files or view more samples of his artwork at the American Art Archives.

Be sure to check back each week for more historical photos and stories of Seal Beach.

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One Response to “GREAT old photos of Seal Beach from Founder’s Day”

  1. Nat Ferguson on September 19th, 2010 7:49 pm

    Great write up, and thanks for the link to Michael’s blog. I was just over there browsing his blog posts and really enjoying the pictures. Man does he have some good connections to people with awesome historical photos!