Past meets present in historical plaque dedication

This Friday, after the official opening of the new La Crescenta Library at 2809 Foothill Blvd., the Historical Society of the Crescenta Valley will dedicate a plaque in the facility, reuniting the scattered descendants of local founding families. The historical society wanted to do something special for the dedication ceremony of the plaque for which it had spent the previous two years fundraising. The society members decided that reuniting the descendants of local historical figures would be an interesting way to honor the valley’s dynamic history. To celebrate, the foothill community is invited to the dedication event that will take place form 5 to 7 p.m.

The huge sculpted bronze relief plaque is situated on the floor of the new library’s lobby with a surround of cut and inlayed granite forming a compass rose. On the plaque are sculpted historical figures to represent the three ages of human habitation in the Crescenta Valley: The Tongva shaman Toypurina represents the thousands of years of Indian occupancy, Don Jose Verdugo celebrates the Spanish era, and Dr. Benjamin Briggs corresponds to the American period.

At Friday’s dedication the direct descendants of these three historical figures will greet the crowd and say a few words about their heritage. The Tongva Dancers will be there and the chief of the Tongva Tribe will perform a sage blessing. There will be refreshments available and a chance to visit with other local residents.

The Historical Society of the Crescenta Valley was formed several years ago to preserve and to celebrate the area’s history. The organization is one of the most active community groups locally, and boasts hundreds of members that meet regularly to learn about and tour local landmarks.

Contributed by Mike Lawler