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URBAN HIKE

Urban Hike: Simply Sidewalks
updated: Aug 27, 2011, 9:45 AM

By Peter Hartmann & Stacey Wright

This week, we continued our quest to walk all 256 miles of public streets within the city limits of Santa Barbara. And rather than report on a specific adventure, we've decided to indulge you with a few more photos of the cool sidewalk contractor stamps and other interesting markings we've discovered along the way.

In our last "sidewalk special", we asked if anyone knows where Putman Avenue is or was - we got no guesses, so now we'll reveal the mystery location of this street... Putman is no longer but is now Loma Street; and the stamp is located at the corner of Loma and California Streets...

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In the course of a different urban hike, we stumbled across another defunct street, located in a completely different part of town. The stamp identifies the street as Encinal. Does anybody care to venture a guess as to where this street used to be?

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And now, without further ado, and in no particular order, we present to you more examples of the sidewalk stamps we've collected along the City streets of Santa Barbara...

These unique stamps are located on the Mesa and have a very "Pacific" feel to them.

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We love the C.C. Pike stamp for a lot of reasons, and especially love this one because although it's old, it's so well preserved. We can only hope for the same fate…

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When we posted our story about hiking the Lower Riviera, we heard back from a reader who informed us that Mr. D'Alfonso was the local contractor who built Diana Lane. We've sure seen a lot of his stamps around town.

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This is a one-of-a-kind stamp. It says simply "BY OWNER". We liked it.

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These stamps were discovered on a variety of streets - the contractors are Kitchen, CC Jordan, CC Jordan and Western Motor Transfer, and one of our other favorites, a unique crescent moon which is hard to decipher. Has anyone else seen this crescent moon stamp around town?

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These are basic stamps...one from Elmer Johnson, the other from CP Cox. We know from experience that at one point in his career Mr. Cox was partnered with Mr. Sissom… but that was either before or after Mr. Cox put this stamp into wet concrete.

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This 1913 marking and the driveway it's associated with were another rare find. They're located near Cottage Hospital on Oak Park Lane, and seem to be holding up exceptionally well after so many years of use. The texture was added to give traction to the vehicles as they made their way into the drive.

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The next two stamps are pretty generic...but Misters Heinauer & Kyle and Mr. Bert Sherman left these marks in wet concrete all around the town.

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This is one of only a few sidewalk contractor stamps we've encountered from an out-of-towner.

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We have no idea who NAN is. Do you?

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F.S. Wicks is another prolific sidewalk contractor in Santa Barbara, so we had to include his stamp.

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And we especially like the pattern on this sidewalk. It seems like there used to be more sidewalks in town with this unique pattern stamped into them, but we can't recall exactly where they might have been located.

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We like the simplistic style of Mr. Hunt's stamp.

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These stamps show how Misters Edward & King changed their style over what was probably a few years.

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From one of Mr. Rogers' stamps, we can see that he really knew his stuff...but from another, we wondered if it was wise of him to include his phone number in his stamp...perhaps someone called his company asking for a refund???

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And then we have the issue of how the City does or doesn't preserve the sidewalk stamps when the sidewalks are changed. Here are a few examples of preserved stamps we've found along our journey.

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It looks like there was some confusion about whether Fourth was an Avenue or a Street. We won't tell you exactly where 4th street was, but we'll help you figure it out on your own. Hint: It was the 4th street up from Mission Street.

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We always appreciate a little well-done "sidewalk personalization" by the locals. Here are a few of our favorites.

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This marking deserves special mention. It's located on Anapamu Street near Santa Barbara High, where it was meant to be read by Mrs. Hunewell, the long-time German teacher at the school during the 1960's and 70's. It was placed on the route from Mrs. Hunewell's home toward the center of town...translated it bids her a "Good day".

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These stamps and marks represent just a fraction of what we've seen in the sidewalks of Santa Barbara. We're not sure exactly why we like them so much, but the fact is that we really do. Perhaps they remind us of "the olden days" or maybe they're simply wonderful little "discoveries" of our town...or perhaps they're a true art form that deserves recognition and preservation. To us they're all three of the above...

As always we encourage you to go on foot and explore our wonderful community, to discover new and different things and above all to keep your eyes, ears and minds open in your travels.

 

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