Sunday, September 16, 2012

Davis History Timeline (75)


The history of a community--or of most any human social organization--is an amorphous and sprawling thing. Getting hold of it can be like, as is said, wrestling with a marshmallow.

Such features prompt the use of crystalizing devices, of stratagems that forge clarity through imposing simplicity.


The “timeline” is one such simplifying stratagem. By daring to array a series of seemingly important matters in a temporal sequence, an understandable story is forged.

Timelines have their oversimplying and misrepresentation dangers, but these are hazards that are worth the risk.

In this spirit, I have attempted a Davis history timeline.

Organized in terms of the sixteen decades in which Davis has existed, it elucidates decade-to-decade changes in:
-- Population,
-- UCD enrollment,
-- The community’s physical footprint,
-- Social eras,
-- Defining events, and
-- Defining people.

A low-resolution version of it is reproduced here. A higher resolution version that is downloadable can be found at:


A four by six foot enlargement is on display at the Hattie Weber Museum of Davis (5th & C streets), where 11 by 17 inch hardcopies are also available when making a donation to the Museum.