Thursday, April 19, 2012

Treasure Chest Thursday - 1950 San Diego Plat Map

It's Treasure Chest Thursday - time to display and discuss a document, image or artifact from my collection of genealogy and family history stuff.

This week, my Treasure is a 1950 Map of San Diego.  In my post last Friday, San Diego Historical Maps, I described the historical maps found on the San Diego City Planning website (

One of the most interesting maps I found was titled San Diego "The Unseen City" Census Data Map.  This piqued my curiosity, and my first thought was "Cool, I can use this when the 1950 U.S. Census is released on  1 April 2022."

When I looked at the map, I realized that I wouldn't have to wait until then for it to be really useful.  Here is the map of the eastern portion of the City of San Diego in 1950:

The map above is for the portion of San Diego east of 28th Street and south of Palm Street.  My childhood neighborhood, and the block I grew up in, is on this map.

Here is the "neighborhood" - I grew up on the block bounded by Ivy Street (north), Fern Street (east), Hawthorn Street (south) and 30th Street (west).  It is block 61 on the map:

An astute observer will see the Census ED number "63" with boundaries - this was in 1950, but it looks like the same boundaries as in 1940.

An astute observer will also observe that the land parcels on each block are defined on the map.  Zooming in a bit more to see Block 61 and the surrounding blocks:

The "subdivision" is identified on the map as "Seaman and Choate's."  Block 61 has 12 parcels laid out - 1 bounding Ivy Street and 12 bounding Hawthorn Street.  These lots were 100 feet wide.

Austin and Della Carringer bought lots 4 through 12 on Block 61 in 1894 from Angeline and David Seaman.  They initially built their home on Lots 11 and 12, but moved it to the western portion of Lots 8, 9 and 10 in about 1925.  

Austin and Della gave lots 5, 6 and 7 to their son Lyle L. Carringer in 1919, and he built the home at 2130 Fern Street, plus two cottages on 30th Street.  

After Austin and Della died in the 1940s, Lyle sold the eastern half of Lots 5, 6 and 7 to John Smith in 1950, and Lots 11 and 12 to Glenn Glasford in 1953.  After Lyle and Emily died in the 1970's, my parents sold the remaining properties to Steve Sandoval in about 1980.

The real value of this map is the names of the different subdivisions (like "Seaman and Choate's"), the numbering of the blocks, and the numbering of the lots on each block.  All of the San Diego land records are based on this organization and nomenclature.

The Eastern portion of San Diego is the only map presently available on the San Diego City Planning website.  I hope that they add the other portions of the city sometime soon.  I have many more land definitions in my notes, and in the San Diego Union newspaper available on GenealogyBank for my San Diego ancestral families.

The City of San Diego has expanded far beyond the defined blocks on the 1950 map above.  While many of the blocks on the map above have been laid out and surveyed, not all of them have buildings on them because of the terrain - there are many canyons that run through this area (and they are lightly shown on the map above) and there still are no buildings on them.  Likewise, some of the streets shown on the map above don't exist due to the terrain, and some streets (and freeways) have been added to the map above.  I would love to see the current map showing the actual San Diego layout and the now existing streets.

The URL for this post is:

Copyright (c) 2012, Randall J. Seaver

No comments: