Valley Center Historical Society
29200 Cole Grade Rd.
Valley Center, CA 92082
Tuesday through Saturdays: 1PM to 4PM
Closed: Sundays, Mondays, and holidays.
Dog-Friendly: No Kid-Friendly: Yes
The Valley Center Historical Society’s mission is to seek, accumulate, preserve, and display facts and knowledge relating to the history of Valley Center and the surrounding area.
Here are some of the permanent installations which visitors can expect to enjoy. All exhibits and displays are subject to change or may be temporarily removed.
* California Grizzly Bear: a taxidermy mount of an actual grizzly (extinct since 1924) and a major educational exhibition on the history of the bear.
* World’s Smallest Post Office: an actual building which once served the community.
* Gold Rush: A tribute to the woman who was the co-discoverer of California gold.
* Aviation History: A replica plus parts from one of the world’s first airplanes, built six years after the Wright Brothers flight.
* Indian Baskets: a large collection of authentic baskets from a local Reservation.
* Original Oil Paintings by Western artist Marjorie Reed.
* 1862 Model Home: a fully-furnished settler’s cabin from the Homestead era.
* Farm and Home Implements of the 1800s.
* Indian Village: re-creation of a 500-year-old Indian settlement.
* Giant Quilt: an enormous quilt with local scenes, created by volunteers.
* Famous Horses: a pictorial presentation on the foals of Seabiscuit, Seattle Slew and Secretariat — all of whom lived in Valley Center.
* United Nations Connection: Ambassador Irving Salomon, longtime resident of Valley Center, entertained world-class leaders, many of whom are featured in a special tribute. Desk of First Lady Eleanor Roosevelt on view.
* Hollywood Comes to Town: From “Mad, Mad World” to “Invaders from Mars” see the movies and TV shows filmed in Valley Center.
* Celebrities: photos of the stars and their homes. Discover the following:
Fred Astaire, Steve (Hercules) Reeves, Randolph Scott, John Wayne, Ramon Novarro, June Allyson and Dick Powell, Merle Oberon, Benji, and the Valley Center woman who was the first Betty Crocker. Also learn about the Valley Center connection to Wyatt Earp, Ronald Reagan and the Prince of Wales.
Personal Experience: Valley Center is an old town with a lot of history. Even though the locals will tell you it looks nothing like it used to, compared to most other towns in San Diego, it still feels very old and undeveloped. For this reason you can still tie old stories together and visit the actual places. I love going to the historical society to ask them questions and have them piece some of the puzzles together for me.