Historic Japanese-American site in H.B. discussed

The endangered remnants of the Japanese community at Wintersburg (now part of Huntington Beach, at Nichols St. and Warner Ave.) will be the topic of the Orange County Historical Society's annual Preservation Month program on May 12th (this Thursday!), 7:30pm, at Trinity Episcopal Church, 2400 N. Canal St., in Orange.

This is the most important extant Asian American historical site in Orange County, and still features the Wintersburg Japanese Presbyterian Church -- including the 1910 mission and manse, and the 1934 church -- as well as the pioneer Furuta family's charming California bungalow (shown above). All of this property now belongs to the Rainbow Disposal Company, which has proposed a plan to use at least some of the land for other purpose. Still other buildings are threatened by the planned road-widening project on Warner Ave.

Is there still a way to preserve this important piece of Orange County's heritage?

The OCHS meeting this Thursday night will feature a panel discussion with Associate Curator at the Japanese American National Museum Carla Tengan, CSUF Professor of History Emeritus Dr. Art Hansen, Orange County historian Phil Brigandi (who studied this site in the 1970s), and Rainbow Disposal Co. C.O.O. Jerry Moffatt. Everyone is going into this with a positive attitude and hopefully it will be the spark that eventually leads to at least some of these historic structures being saved.

The meeting is open to the public at no cost, and refreshments will be served. I hope to see you there!