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January Program

Saturday, January 12th, 2019

1:00 PM

Bolton Hall Museum

Parking available uphill at the Elks Lodge

Refreshments after the program


Everyone is Welcome

Free Admission

Suggested Donation: $3 per person


In the 1950s housing developments began peppering the land outside of Los Angeles. Affordable, family-friendly communities like the San Fernando Valley initiated an exodus to the suburbs. It was in the Valley that designer-builder William Mellenthin developed his singular brand of cozy, charming home. They became known as the Mellenthin Birdhouse ranch home—so called because they featured a cupola or dovecote built prominently into the roof. Gathering information from original homeowners, articles, brochures, as well as the Mellenthin family, this presentation reveals many facts and details about this industrious and influential man — with rare photographs and documents that illustrate a young, burgeoning San Fernando Valley as it became “the new suburban paradise.”

William Mellenthin

and the

San Fernando Valley

"Birdhouse" Ranch Homes


Chris Lukather is a Cal Arts graduate, who follows his passion for art and design, California subculture and obscure Los Angeles history. A fifth generation Californian, Chris has discovered a lot of local history through his own family. Chris is currently editor and publisher of The Writing Disorder, a quarterly literary journal established in 2010. He is also a graphic designer.