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Shades of Corona Gallery

The Beginning - Early Corona: 1896 - 1945 Years of Change - Corona 1946-1980 Years of Growth - Corona Since 1980


The gallery is arranged into three categories by date with thumbnail images and descriptions of each image available in each section. To view the full photograph click on the thumbnail image, it will open in a new window.

List of Donors


The Beginning - Early Corona: 1896 - 1945

The Corona of the past was a small rural community known as South Riverside. When citizens incorporated the new city, they sought to carve their own identity by changing the name to Corona. The citizens of Corona were mostly of English and Irish descent, but Mexicans and Italians soon came seeking work in the citrus fields. Early accounts reflect a segregated society in which Hispanics, Italians and the two or three black families in town were forced to live in designated areas and their children had to attend the same minority school regardless of their address. Things began to change after World War II, but slowly.

Family bar at Fifth & Main. Left to right - Maria Knorr Provensal & Pete Provensal, husband and wife.

Date: circa 1900
Donor: Charles Knorr
Resource ID: SHA-aaa-0328

  Dioniscio Maciel and Maria (Rojas) Maciel

Date: c. 1904
Donor: Cathy Blankerbecker and Dioniscio (Mitch) Salgado
Resource ID: SHA-aaa-0208

Corona Lumber Co. (Fourth & Main). Left to right: Howard Ware, A.J. Ware, Oren Burmun, & Frank Ware. Center section of front building was originally Elwood Lilly's "City Lumber Company" office (on 1/4 block - SW corner of E. Sixth & Ramona). Next it was moved to SE corner of W. Fourth & Washburn. Final location is shown in picture. Both small sections demolished in 1938 to build new addition to south end.

Date: 1936
Donor: Terry Ware
Resource ID: SHA-aaa-0408

  Manuel Enriquez (brother of Beatrice Ramirez) and dog on Joy Street in Corona.

Date: 1930s
Donor: Beatrice Ramirez
Resource ID: SHA-aaa-0436

Ortiz Family. Left to Right - Back: Necomedes, Eulalio Ortiz, Susana Ortiz. Middle: Pete Ortiz (standing left), Baby Ramon Ortiz, Don Luciano Ortiz, Dona Maria Ortiz, Luciano (standing right). Front: Tomas Ortiz, Lucia Ortiz.

Date: not given
Donor: Delores Ortiz Salgado
Resource ID: SHA-aaa-0017

  Lookout tower in So. Corona during WWII

Date: 1940s
Donor: Kate Hyett
Resource ID: SHA-aaa-0267
  Juan Rojo picking oranges at Orange Heights.

Date: 1940s
Donor: Amelia Lerma
Resource ID: SHA-aaa-0453

Years of Change 1945 - 1980

Not welcome in the white veteran's group, Hispanic soldiers coming home from World War II had to form their own. During the 1950s, the first Hispanics were elected to both the School Board and the City Council. By the sixties, the first Chinese families came to town to start a restaurant; in earlier years the Chinese were not allowed to own or even rent property in Corona. Thus, the seeds of Corona's dynamically diverse community had been planted, even though the overall population continued to grow slowly.
Anita (Corral) Ramirez (right) & Frances Martinez (left) at Foothill Packing House at Joy and the railroad, learning to pack.

Date: circa 1946/ 1947
Donor: Frances Martinez
Resource ID: SHA-aaa-0261

Temescal Ranch sign. Lydia Bodor, June Panattoni, Miriam White, & Ruth Panattoni.

Date: circa 1949/ 1950
Donor: Lydia Bodor
Resource ID: SHA-aaa-0288 
Joe Dominguez Post
#742 American Legion

Date: not given
Donor: Reynaldo Aparicio
Resource ID: SHA-aaa-0053

Cinco de Mayo parade. Tony Ortiz, Max Rodriguez, unknown lady, Pete Mendoza.

Date: not given
Donor: Dolores Ortiz Salgado
Resource ID: SHA-aaa-0033

Varela's wedding. Al's parents Vicenta and Joseph Varela.

Date: 1960
Donor: Melanie Rodriguez
Resource ID: SHA-aaa-0311 
John and Alice Zarate at time of campaigning for City Council.

Date: 1972
Donor: Margaret Vasquez
Resource ID: SHA-aaa-0662


Years of Growth - Corona Since 1980

As citrus gave way to urban development in the 1980s, the population of Corona exploded - up 110% from 1980 to 1989 - bringing a diverse influx of peoples. According to the 1990 census, Corona's African-American population grew by 549% between 1980 and 1990. Similarly, the Asian-American population expanded by a phenomenal 1,195%. Even the Hispanic population, which had always been a significantly large part of Corona grew 122%, adding new immigrants from El Salvador and Colombia, as well as Hispanics from other parts of California. The same decade brought a 70% growth rate in the Native American population. All of these people brought new diversity to the city. Since then, Corona's overall population growth has slowed to 40.1% - a pace that still makes Corona one of the fastest growing communities in the state, and now a city with over 140,000 people.

Rudy Felipe family photo. Rudy, Bertha, Liana, Elissa and Richard Felipe.

Date: 1987
Donor: Rudy Felipe
Resource ID: SHA-aaa-0130


Date: not given
Donor: Anwar Saleemi
Resource ID: SHA-aaa-0594

Elora Lyda on the first
day of school, Mrs. Gardee's
second grade class,
St. Edwards School.

Date: not given
Donor: Celia Lyda
Resource ID: SHA-aaa-0537

  Mee Woo, King Chin and his daughter, grandmother of Mee, Mamiy Chain, Juk Chain's father, Whi Leng, Suling Woo, Sui Kiu, Sohau, Sue Soon in front of restaurant.

Date: not given
Donor: Mee Woo
Resource ID: SHA-aaa-0380

Maciel family reunion.
Elders, sisters and brothers.
Left to right: Helen Maciel, Carmen Meudoza, Lena Rico, Christina Rivera, Vicenta, Hope Lomeli, niece Gloria Flores, John Maciel.

Date: August 1995
Donor: Al Varela
Resource ID: SHA-aaa-0622

  Jamaal Tucker at 15 years old, on the Corona High Track Team.

Date: 1996
Donor: Cheryl Turner Tucker
Resource ID: SHA-aaa-0729
  Lisa Morano

Date: 1998
Donor: Sal Morano
Resource ID: SHA-aaa-0236


© 1998 The photographs on this web site are the property of the Corona Public Library. Any use of these materials in publication or printed documents must acknowledge that they are "Courtesy of the Corona Public Library" and the author must have the written permission of the Corona Public Library to publish these materials. The library holds all rights and copyright interests to these photographs.


List of Donors


Virginia Alaniz Kate Hyett Anita Orosco Al Varela
Chana Antkowiak Betty Knorr Geeta Pattanaik Josie Varela
Reynoldo Aparicio Charles Knorr Beatrice Ramirez Vicentia Varela
Cathy Blankerbecker Dottie Laird Rachel Jimenez Ramirez Margaret Vasquez
Lydia Bodor Amelia Lerma Rudy Ramos Terry Ware
Judy Farrell Betty Luscher Becki Rios Bernadette Watts Rico
Rudy Felipe Celia Lyda Melanie Rodriguez Richard Winn
Gloria Freel Suzanne MacConnell Tony Rodriguez Judy Wong
Paul Ganahl Frances Martinez Anwar Saleemi June Wong
Edgar Garcia Sal Morano Delores Ortiz Salgado Kui Bor Woo
Jeff Haggard Esther (Varela) Munoz Myra Sandoval

Mike Zilioli

Rachel Hernandez

Kathleen Munoz

Joe Shraeder  
Alice Ho Veronica Navarro Cheryl Turner-Tucker  



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