Compiled by Nick Sestanovich
75 years ago
Hundreds See Mrs. O’Leary Dedicate Opening Of New Martinez-Arsenal Ferry Service (Oct. 22, 1942)
With the American Flag flying fore and aft, the Martinez-Benicia ferry “City of Seattle” in command of Capt. Fred M. Wold, arrived at 9:30 a.m. at the Benicia Arsenal wharf for the dedicatory ceremony for the inauguration ferry service between Martinez and the government arsenal.
Several hundred Arsenal officers and officials, headed by Colonel Herbert O’Leary, commandant, greeted Mayor C.A. Ricks and members of the Martinez City Council who made the inaugural trip.
Immediately after the ferry arrived Mayor Ricks invited Mrs. Herbert O’Leary, wife of the commandant, to cut the eagle and red star ribbon at the wharf entrance which officially opened the new service for Arsenal passengers which started today.
Accompanying the Martinez officials was the Alhambra Union High school band under the direction of Kenneth Dobson. The band played the “Star Spangled Banner” and later marched to the Arsenal Administration building where several musical numbers were rendered.
50 years ago
School Board Asks County To Sell Bonds (Oct. 19, 1967)
Trustees of the Benicia Unified School District polished off a lengthy agenda in less than an hour Monday evening. High points were a resolution calling for the Solano Board of Supervisors to offer for a sale $1 million worth of school construction bonds, and a report from Mrs. Virginia Hahn, the district food service administrator, regarding current services offered students for lunch.
President Don Passalacqua conducted the meeting. trustees Dr. John R. Van Buren, Ronald Rice, and Mrs. Evelyn Sprague were present. Trustee Earl manor was absent.
The resolution regarding the bond monies received a unanimous approval from those present. This is another of the steps involved in selling the bonds.
Mrs. Hahn reported with satisfaction the cafeteria system had operated “in the black” in September. “This is due to the government surplus food items we have been able to get,” she said, “including butter, lard, dried milk, ground beef, orange juice and whole grain wheats. We had to raise the price of milk. We operate at the high school with two adults, Mrs. Anna Gepner and Mrs. Marge Grapes, and five students. We opened at Mills School, serving only the Benicia Intermediate School, With Mrs. Dorothy Llewellyn in charge of four student helpers. We’ve cut down on labor by using much disposable material and we’re not using the dishwashers, also cutting costs.”
25 years ago
School lines draw parents’ ire (Oct. 18, 1992)
By David Hagerty
A public hearing Thursday night on a proposal to redraw attendance boundaries for Benicia’s public elementary schools proved that the redistricting is sure to be a painful process.
The school board fielded questions from parents who are concerned that their children might be sent to a different school once the lines are redrawn.
And while Superintendent Annette O’Connor reassured parents that she would not try to disrupt families or force any children to move unnecessarily, an underlying feeling of tension was evident in the room.
“When we make a decision like this, we can’t please everyone, and some people and some people are going to have to go who don’t want to,” trustee Regina Westmoreland said at the end of the evening.
The board made no decision on the boundary proposal, and asked O’Connor to consider the testimony of about 15 speakers and return with the proposal at the board’s next meeting Nov. 5.
The area of most concern was the boundary between Henderson and Farmer elementary schools, which under the proposal would be shifted north from Southampton Road to follow Cambridge, Mills and Brentwood drives. .
The full articles of these and other stories are available on microfilm at the Benicia Public Library.