Palm Springs Historical Society

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New Additions

You Can't Eat Dirt - by Vyola Ortner

In 1952, a wife, mother, and small-business owner living in Downey, California, unexpectedly found herself vice chairman of the Tribal Council for the Agua Caliente Band of Cahuilla Indians. Within two years, she was chairman of this disadvantaged band in Palm Springs, California, leading the first all-women tribal council in the United States and setting into motion a sequence of events that would alter the destinies and fortunes of her tribe and, ultimately, Native Americans across the nation. You Can't Eat Dirt tells the remarkable story of Vyola J. Ortner and her historic political tenure. Part autobiography, part biography, the book explains how she led the Agua Caliente Band of Cahuilla Indians in its struggle for political independence and economic development, waging a campaign to maximize the potential of its sole asset - land. Committed to progressive change, Ortner maneuvered through local, state and federal arenas, creating new business opportunities that forever benefited the tribe and played a key role in the development of Palm Springs. Her pioneering work enabled all tribes in the US to shape their own economic futures. You Can't Eat Dirt is a multifaceted chronicle of a woman's singular journey and of a tribe and a community at the crossroads of history. It includes Ortner's first-hand account of her years as a tribal and civic leader, set in a lavishly illustrated volume of photographs and rare documents. It is supplemented with a substantial critical and historical essay on her political work by Diana C. du Pont. A comprehensive chronology offers both a record of Ortner's public life and a selected timeline of important events in Native America, especially the Agua Caliente Cahuilla. In addition to being an engaging biography of an extraordinary woman, this book is an essential addition to women's studies, the history of Palm Springs, Native American studies, the Agua Caliente Cahuilla, tribal law, and US-Indian relations.

Heiress of Doom, Lois Kellogg of Palm Springs - A biography written by Peter Wild

Kellogg's biography is especially complicated as there are numerous contradictory versions of key events and her bohemian lifestyle was so colorful that aspects of it might be dismissed as fanciful even when true, but Professor Wild has supplied reproductions of numerous documents to bolster his narrative.

Plants of the Cahuilla Indians- by Bob Hepburn

Hot off the press is a brand new book, Plants of the Cahuilla Indians, written by "Mountain" Bob Hepburn. The author is a naturalist who has spent many years creating a field handbook that indexes the plants and their uses for the Colorado Desert and the surrounding mountains.

Images of America: Palm Springs - by Moya Henderson

It was our privilege and honor to work with Moya Henderson on her pictorial history book of Palm Springs entitled Images of America: Palm Springs. She selected many pictures of Palm Springs and told the ultimate story of how the city began, how it grew and some of the people and activities it attracted.

Museum Store

We are in the process on putting the PSHS store online. Until the online store is in place please contact us regarding your purchase requests by phone, fax or email.

Call us at Tel: 760.323.8297
Fax: 760.320.2561


item B001
Palm Springs the First Hundred Years

Palm Springs the First Hundred Years

by Frank M. Bogert
Hardcover | $59.20 includes tax

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A fascinating pictorial history written about California's famous desert city by mayor of Palm Springs - Frank M. Bogert. A personal narrative written by the popular and revered man who helped forge the city's history, this books is illustrated with over three hundred photographs from local photographers and his own unique collection. These images, along with his very personal narrative, tell the flamboyant story of the world-famed community.
item B002
Palm Springs Legends

Palm Springs Legends: Creation of a Desert Oasis

by Greg Niemann
Paperback | $19.34 includes tax

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Palm Springs, long a desert hideaway for celebrities, has a history as unique and varied as its residents. From the original Cahuilla inhabitants of the area, to the settlers who were drawn to the therapeutic waters of the original hot springs, you will get to know the people and stories that made Palm Springs famous.
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The McCallum Saga

The McCallum Saga: The Story of the Founding of Palm Springs

by Katherine Ainsworth
Hardcover | $30.17 includes tax

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The story of Judge McCallum and the role he played in developing one small area of California is a true saga of courage and faith. It is a microcosm of the American dream.
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Hollywood Celebrity Playground

Hollywood Celebrity Playground

by Howard Johns
Hardcover | $43.10 includes tax

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With Hollywood's Celebrity Playground, Howard Johns picks up where his Palm Springs Confidential left off-this time covering the other fabled desert resort towns that stretch from Hollywood to Las Vegas. This book includes the million dollar cities of Rancho Mirage, Palm Desert, Indian Wells, and historic La Quinta-where TV kingpin Merv Griffin owns a 240-acre Arabian horse ranch and Oscar-winning director Frank Capra scripted the memorable films It Happened One Night and Lost Horizon.
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Palm Springs Weekend

Palm Springs Weekend: The Architecture and Design of a Mid-Century Oasis

by Allen Hess and Andrew Danish
Hardcover | $43.00 includes tax

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Revealing for the first time the eccentric treasure trove of commercial, civic, and domestic architecture that makes Palm Springs an oasis of progressive design, this book is filled with hundreds of archival and contemporary photos, vintage posters, and postcards.
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Coachella Valley, Yesterday, Today and Tomorrow

Coachella Valley, Yesterday, Today, and Tomorrow

by Richard J. Soltys
Hardcover | $53.82 includes tax

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A photographic journey through the Coachella Valley, both past and present.
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Palm Springs Confidential

Palm Springs Confidential: Playground of the Stars

by Howard Johns
Hardcover | $43.10 includes tax

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Johns, editor-at-large for Palm Springs Life, set out to write a locator guide for stars' homes but instead wound up compiling a gossipy who's who of Palm Springs, California, the desert community 100 miles from Hollywood that was once was the stomping ground of the big screen's hottest silent stars, screen goddesses, studio moguls and more.
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120 Great Hikes in and near Palm Springs

120 Great Hikes in and near Palm Springs

by Philip Ferranti with Hank Koenig
Hardcover | $19.34 includes tax

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The mountain wilderness surrounding this desert resort town offers extensive trail systems where outdoor enthusiasts enjoy some of the best winter and spring hikes in the nation. And there is no better companion for your adventures than this comprehensive hiking guide - by local author, hike leader, and Coachella Valley Hiking Club founder Philip Ferranti. Excursions for hikers of all ages and skill levels, as well as 58 user-friendly maps, 118 black-and-white photos, detailed trail descriptions, difficulty ratings, seasonal advice, safety tips, and more.
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Palm Springs the Landscape, the History, the Lore

Palm Springs the Landscape, the History the Lore

by Mary Jo Churchwell
Hardcover | $26.94 includes tax

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An intimate, first-person narrative that is partly an old fashioned nature journal and partly a history book backed up and fleshed out with four years of original research. To leave the celebrities completely out is, of course, impossible. But here they play only a supportive role to the not-so-famous pioneers: Mother Nellie Coffman, Auntie Pearl McManus, Judge John Guthrie McCallum, Dr. Welwood Murray, and Zaddie Bunker, the flying grandmother, a woman who embodied women's lib a good many years before it went public. Their stories are classic Palm Springs biographies, as Palm Springs, in their time, was a classic model of front-porch America.
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People of the Magic Waters, the Cahuilla Indians of Palm Springs

People of the Magic Waters: The Cahuilla Indians of Palm Springs

by John R. Brumgart and Larry L. Bowles
Hardcover | $? includes tax

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Palm Springs Modern: Houses in the California Desert

Palm Springs Modern: Houses in the California Desert

by Adele Cygelman, Joseph Rosa and David Glomb
Hardcover | $53.88 includes tax

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When designers such as Richard Neutra, John Lautner, and Albert Frey came together with members of the Hollywood elite like Frank Sinatra, Bob Hope, and Lucille Ball, they produced luxury homes nestled in bouldered hills and vacation estates located along green fairways. Palm Springs Modern documents this 40-year architectural explosion in the California desert. Author Adele Cygelman offers a succinct history beginning with the rise of desert modernity in the 1930s through to its fall from grace in the early 1970s. The photographs by David Glomb are spectacular.


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Smoke Tree Ranch, A Way of Life DVD
Smoke Tree Ranch, A Way of Life

by ?
DVD RT:? | $32.27 includes tax

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Traces the history from 1887 Palm Valley Land Company's incorporation through Mac Blankenhorn's founding of the Guest Ranch in the 1920's, to the Markham's stewardship in the 1930's and their expansion of the residential Colony and improvement of the hotel, to the purchase of the Ranch by its Colonists in 1945 and beyond. Illustrated by gorgeous panoramic photographs and rare 16mm footage, this remarkable documentary takes a peek at a venerable Palm Springs institution.
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Palm Springs In the Beginning VHS
Palm Springs in the Beginning

by ?
VHS RT:? | $18.00 includes tax

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