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Events in 2021

Beginning, Sunday, July 11, 2021, The Torrance Historical Society & Museum will be open every Sunday from 1:00 PM - 4:00 PM, through September 2021. Come October 2021, we'll revisit resuming our regular Museum hours - Wednesday, Thursday & Sunday - 1:00 PM - 4:00 PM, and event schedules.

If you have research to do, we are available by appointment.

There has been a core team of behind-the-scenes volunteers working to . . . clean the museum; put up new displays and refresh old ones; reorganize our photo collection; repair fragile newspapers, documents and maps; archive documents and City history, and MUCH more. Lead by Museum Curator Janet Payne, let's give a round of applause to Tom Brewer, Cleoan Ferm, Lynda Kraemer, Marci Long, Mike Maiuri, Fern Ruiz & Paul Wisman - thanks, Team! Speaking of Janet Payne, she will be docenting in the Museum Sunday, July 11, 2021.

We will have refreshing ice water, sweet treats (brownie bites and lemon drops), a friendly "Hello, and welcome back!" we'll be waiting for you!

Also, we invite you to stop by the Katy Geissert Library to checkout their new display Celebrating 100 Years of Incorporation - 1921 - 2021 in the case located in the front lobby. Some items on display include . . .

  • Photo of Jared Sidney Torrance - our City's Founder
  • Photo of George Proctor - our City's first "Mayor"
  • Newspaper article highlighting reasons Torrance wanted to incorporate - including so people didn't have to travel two miles to Lomita to vote!
  • Copy of the certificate from the State of California showing the certified resolution of the Los Angeles Board of Supervisors re: incorporation of Torrance as a city of the sixth class, and more!

You can also celebrate this milestone by experiencing all that Torrance has to offer. Each week the City will release 10 new experiences for you to enjoy:

And . . . stroll downtown Torrance, the original footprint of the City, and check out the Centennial Banners on the light poles.

centennial banner  

Just in case you missed our Annual Meeting in June 2021 which featured City Manager Emeritus LeRoy Jackson giving the History of the City's Centennial of Incorporation - 1921 - 2021, you can view the recorded meeting here. LeRoy Jackson's presentation starts at 19:00. SO much intriguing and interesting information was shared - it's a MUST SEE!

History is to be celebrated - learn about Torrance's! Looking forward to seeing you back in the Museum!

Our Board of Officers will remain the same for 2021/2022. See information below on our Annual Meeting, Installation of Officers and Presentation on Sunday, June 6th via zoom.


In the interest of the health of our staff and guests, the Museum will be closed until July 11, 2021.

We miss you! In an abundance of caution, we buttoned-up the Museum back in March 2020 when instructed to do so. We are working with City Staff to make sure all appropriate COVID-19 safeguards are in place before we welcome you back.

If you have questions or require research assistance, please leave a message at the Museum (310.328.5392) and we will try and assist you. Or you can either send an email to Debbie Hays, (4th VP - Communication & Newsletter) or via this website on the Contact Us page.

Though it pains us, to help slow the spread of COVID-19, we are cancelling Tea for Two and Rock Around the Block for 2021.

As of right now we haven't cancelled any more of the 2021 signature events. Everything is based on COVID numbers, of course. And . . . since those are changing weekly, nothing has been set in stone, yet.

We do have a few ideas up our sleeves, so stay tuned!

JST with mask  Everyone needs to use a mask due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

THS Museum lights This never-happened-before-in-our-lifetime-until-now pandemic is history in the making. To honor the hospitality industry (purple), who has been hit particularly hard, and those on the frontline (blue), the Torrance Historical Society is lighting up the Museum in purple and blue, every night until the end of April in a show of solidarity and hope.

Thanks to DJ Ozzie who adjusted the purple and blue lights at the Torrance Historical Society & Museum, so it looks even better than initially. The Museum will continue to light-up history in purple (hospitality industry) and blue (frontliners) from 8:00 PM - 10:00 PM every night until May 15th. Stop by and see it in person!

THS Museum lights THS Museum lights THS Museum lights
Visitors posing on the Museum steps.

Watercolor Lessons - Everyone Can be an Artist
The First Torrance Historical Society Fundraising event for 2021

Let's do some watercolor painting, together! The Torrance Historical Society has invited artist, Lori Davies, to teach a basic watercolor lesson via Zoom for beginners. Join the FUN, even if you aren't a beginner.

Where: Wherever you Zoom best - the Zoom invite will come out a few days before the class with some "visuals" of the scene that you will want to look at on your phone or another device as we paint; your larger screen will be used for watching Lori paint.
When: Monday, June 28th
Time: 6:30 PM - 8:00 PM
Cost: $20 - this is the Torrance Historical Society's first fundraising event of the year, and colorful one at that! See RSVP for how to pay and to sign up.
RSVP: Please reserve a spot by e-mailing Debbie that you want to participate AND enclose a check for $20 payable to Torrance Historical Society. Mail to:
Torrance Historical Society
1345 Post Avenue
Torrance, CA 90501

(note - the mail is taking longer these days - please mail early)

Supplies you will need:

  • a basic box of watercolors or tube watercolors
  • brush (small and larger is helpful, but just one is okay)
  • 2 cups of water
  • one piece of watercolor paper (9x12 approx. - cold pressed 140 weight is great) or watercolor cards
  • pencil
  • eraser
  • scratch paper
  • masking tape
  • a movable board to tape your paper to (a cutting board works) keeps it from "puddling"
  • blow dryer - it helps to use a blow dryer in between colors to prevent blurring

If you don't have these items (paints, brushes, paper), you can order on Amazon or buy at an arts and crafts store or sometimes at your neighborhood drug store.

The Torrance Historical Society will provide paint, two brushes, and watercolor paper for everyone who signs up by Friday, June 18 for folks that live locally and can pick-up at the museum. They will arrange a pick-up time at the Museum.

Contact Lori at
Check out Lori's Facebook and Instagram pages under DRAW WATERCOLOR FUN! This is to see other classes and samples of her work.

Questions about the event contact the Torrance Historical Society via our website page Contact Us or email Debbie at

gill bridge  
Copy of the painting from this fund-raising event by Vince Beggs, THS member and painting participant.

Annual Meeting & Installation of Officers-Sunday, June 6th, 2021
Live in your Livingroom

What: Annual Meeting & installation of Officers.
Normally, we would host an event at a COOL location, with lunch included in the ticket price. We then would take 10 minutes to have the Mayor offically install the board of Officers. This year instead of you coming to us, we're coming to YOU - via Zoom.
Date: Sunday, June 6th
Time: 11:00 am Social
11:30 Meeting begins and Installation of Officers (The THS Board)
11:45 Presentation by emeritus City Manager, LeRoy Jackson
History of the City's Centennial of Incorporation: 1921 - 2021
Where: Your own living room or another room in your home.
Register: Email our President, Michelle Polcari, no later than Thursday, June 3rd. She will send you the Zoom link. Zoom link will be available for cell phone or by computer. Michelle Polcari
Info: If you have any questions or would like additional information, please visit or call the Museum at (310) 328-5392.
Attire: Casual or COVID Casual, (yoga pants, PJs, bunny slippers)
Cost: Free
Meal: We recommend popping in to downtown Torrance after the meeting for a bit to eat at one of our fabulous neighborhood restaurants. After LeRoy's presentation on our City's incorporation, you'll have a whole new appreciation for Old Torrance - the original one-square mile footprint of our City. You'll also see the Centennial Banners on the light poles.

To view the recorded meeting click here. LeRoy Jackson's presentation starts at 19:00.

Memorial Day - Reading of the Names on the Wall - 2021

Normally, that means before COVID crept into our lives, on Memorial Day, the Torrance Historical Society conducts a public memorial service for Torrance service personnel who gave their lives in U.S. military actions. The program takes place in the plaza of the City of Torrance Veterans Memorial at the corner of Torrance Blvd. and Maple Ave. and includes the reading of the 146 Names on the Wall. Those names include war losses from World War I to those in the Iraq and Afghanistan War.

In a continued abundance of caution, a few members of the Torrance Historical Society, gathered on Wednesday at the Names on the Wall, without an audience, for a reading of the names. There was only one reader, not seven - Charlie Saulinas, a Vietnam Veteran. Michelle Polcari, President, virtually welcomed the "crowd," and Jerry Ronan, Coordinator of the event, lead the Flag Salute.

It was simple. It was poignant. It was tradition.

Torrance CitiCABLE 3 was there to capture the reading, and will air it on CitiCABLE 3 on Memorial Day (Monday, May 31st) at 8:00 AM, 10:00 AM, 3:00 PM, and 8:00 PM.

See the event on YouTube.

COVID, or no COVID, we will hear the names of the 146 war losses, who once called Torrance "home," read aloud on Memorial Day.

On Monday, we will be grateful for the gift of those who never came home. We will remember -- every day is Memorial Day. " We will pray that we may never add another name to that cold, black wall," noted Jerry Ronan, Torrance Historical Society Board Member and WWII Veteran.

Note: With the help of a handful of volunteers, the Torrance Historical Society is continuing to gather and preserve the too-short life story of each of the Torrance military war causalities. To date, the organization is over halfway to their goal of putting a face on each name. The organization aspires to research, and place in the Museum archives, the story of each of these heroes.

Veterans Memorial  
Picture is of Charlie Saulinas, a Vietnam Veteran reading the names.

Past Events

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