Tuesday, June 28, 2016

The Three Davis Transformations: The Organization of the 14 Reports in the Right Sidebar (254)

The publication of Davis: Transformation has prompted me to reexamine the purpose and content of the right-hand sidebar on this page, which has been and still is a list of links to Davis history reports I desire to highlight.

The idea of “transformation” informing that new volume provides a perspective with which to evaluate reports previously in the sidebar, to consider other reports, and to organize the now 14 of them in terms of the three great transformations that make up Davis history.

Desiring to be comprehensive, I, of course, begin with the foundational history of Davis: Davisville ’68.

There are then four reports providing OVERVIEWS of the three transformations: Davis: Radical Changes, Davis History Timeline, Major Shapers of Davis and The 2nd Street 600s Over 15 Decades.

1. FIRST TRANSFORMATION.  After the Gold Rush: Tarnished Dreams in the Sacramento Valley provides a vivid account of the “Ag Village” transformation of the 1860s-1900s. The booklet Tiny Davis, CA focuses on the size of the place in this initial incarnation (as well as in the second transformation).

2. SECOND TRANSFORMATION. Davis, California 1910s-1940s seeks to capture the first four but not the fifth decade of the “College Town” transformation of the 1910s-1950s. Davis’ incorporation early in the College Town period -- in 1917 -- created a new kind of institution, basics of which are chronicled in Davis City Council Elections, 1917-2000. College towns generate student districts, a Davis version of which is documented in A 1920s-50s Student District in Davis California. Such new complexity itself prompts city planning, which is reported in Davis City Planning, 1925-2005.

3. THIRD TRANSFORMATION. Growing Pains: Thirty Years in the History of Davis focuses on 1968-1998, which is a good match for the last four decades of the 20th century I have used roughly to mark off the third, the “University City” transformation of the1960s-1990s. Growing Pains provides an indispensible text rendering of that incarnation whereas Davis: Transformation consists of images with captions (169 of them in color, to be exact). The University City transformation involved extensive demolition of buildings built in the two previous periods to make way for new era structures. The extent of this as of the year 2000 is reported and graphed in Davis Heritage Buildings.

Clicking on any of the 14 boxes in the right sidebar takes one to a web page with more information on a report or to a copy of the report itself.

I very much hope this 14 item bibliography provides a helpful self-study guide for anyone interested in learning Davis history.