• History,  Larry Norman

    Larry Norman

    Dedicated to a pioneer that helped make Marina del Rey a reality (Editors Note: This letter is from the late Larry Norman’s daughter and in her words gives a brief history of Mr. Norman and Marina del Rey.) Larry Norman My father, Larry Norman, came to the Venice area in 1919 from Edmonton, Alberta and had been active and prominent in affairs relating to the development of the harbor and the beaches until his death. He was born in Canby, Minnesota on January 9, 1899 and at the age of eight he was sent with his sister to live in a convent in Inmesfail, Alberta after an intruder murdered his father. His mother, Mary, was a nurse in the Yukon Territory and flew from one Eskimo village to another providing medical treatment to the Eskimos. She was the only medical person at that time treating all the Eskimos in the territory. After arriving in Venice, he worked at the Venice pier. He later became a newsreel cameraman for Pathe News. His first business connection in Venice was with the Harry C. Lieber Realty Co. Larry later worked for Harrison Brush Chevrolet Company as a branch manager in Venice. In 1929,…

  • History

    The History of Marina del Rey

    Marina Del Rey is the largest man-made harbor in the United States. As one of Southern California’s most prized recreational areas, Marina del Rey is the realization of a dream that spans more than 100 years. What began as the vision of a 19th century real estate speculator has endured bankruptcy, unsympathetic government reports, two world wars and mother nature, to become a popular destination for day visitors, tourists, water sports enthusiasts and business travelers. It all began in 1887 when real estate developer, M. C. Wicks envisioned turning the Playa del Rey estuary into a major commercial harbor. Working under the auspices of the Santa Fe railroad, Wicks’ Ballona Development Co. invested $300,000 to develop the area but went bankrupt three years later. A visitor to the estuary in those days would have found no sailors, but plenty of duck hunters. A quarter of a century later, nothing much had changed. In 1916, the U. S. Army Corps of Engineers reported that it was impractical to develop the Playa del Rey inlet and basin as a major harbor. Marina proponents had another go at it in 1936, when Congress authorized reconsideration of the previous negative report, and a year…