We are striving to provide increased online content to our community. This blog features articles related to the Museum's vast collections and changing exhibitions.


Arroyo Seco Parkway map

History of the Arroyo Seco Parkway Preserved in Museum’s Archives

April 11, 2016

The Arroyo Seco Parkway was officially dedicated on Dec. 30, 1940 and opened to the public the next day — just in time to handle the crowd of motorists traveling…

Judith Heitkemper (Cimino)

Golden Age of Sewing

January 13, 2016

From house dresses to haute couture, women in the 1950s used their sewing skills to create smart wardrobes that reflected fashion influences from Paris to Hollywood. Renowned designers such as…

Historic Negatives Collections

December 10, 2015

PMH maintains the area’s largest and most complete photographic archives of Pasadena and its environs, numbering an estimated one million photographic images. Staff, interns, and volunteers work tirelessly to catalog,…

1890s women' bodice

Sewing and Construction Skills of the 1890s and 1920s

December 2, 2015

How did these fabulous fashions find their way into women’s wardrobes? The evolution of dressmaking and sewing skills over the decades reflected women’s changing roles as did the fashions they…

Pasadena aviatrix Yolando Spirito

What, No Pants?!

November 4, 2015

As common as pants are in our wardrobes today, it was scandalous for women to appear in them just over 100 years ago. The trend toward trousers began during the…

A Final Walk

September 15, 2015

By the late 1930s, there were only a handful of Civil War veterans left in Pasadena. Unlike in earlier days, there were no big groups of them attending events, such…

Give Us a Flag: African American Civil War Soldiers

September 8, 2015

…And I further declare and make known, that such persons of suitable condition, will be received into the armed service of the United States to garrison forts, positions, stations, and…

Under a Heavy Fire: Lieutenant Thomas Ellsworth

September 1, 2015

“Under a heavy fire carried his wounded commanding officer from the field.”– from the Medal of Honor citation of Thomas F. Ellsworth, 55th Massachusetts Infantry In mid-1863, Corporal Thomas Ellsworth…

By Their Gallantry in Action

August 25, 2015

When the Civil War began, the United States had no official medals or other decorations that could be awarded to soldiers or sailors for bravery or special merit. This was…

Summer Camp: Civil War Veteran Associations

August 18, 2015

The local Civil War veterans, especially the Union Army veterans, tended to socialize together both locally and on “road trips.” Some were to reunions at Gettysburg, or state and national…