The Year of 1956 (I was 29 years old)
What was happening in the world:
- Despite its claim to have killed 10,000 Mau Mau warriors over the last 4 years, Britain is losing its battle to retain Kenya as a possession.
- France is also losing its fight to keep colonies in North Africa.
- Hungary tries to revolt against Communism, but is brutally suppressed by Russian tanks.
What was happening in the USA:
- Top stars in Hollywood are Elvis Presley and Bridget Bardot.
- Eisenhower easily defeats Adlai Stevenson for a 2nd term.
- Fidel Castro emerging as a dictator in Cuba.
- The US Navy launches the USS Saratoga as the first nuclear carrier.
- Elvis Presley releases his first gold album titled Elvis Presley.
- A joint resolution of Congress is signed by President Dwight D. Eisenhower, authorizing "In God We Trust" as the national US motto.
- Actress Marilyn Monroe marries playwright Arthur Miller in New York.
What was happening in California:
- The Price is Right airs for the first time.
- Egypt seizes and nationalizes the Suez Canal.
- Jim Bailey runs the mile in a record 3:59 in Los Angeles.
What was happening in sports:
- In the Rose Bowl, it was Michigan State 17 - UCLA 14.
- In the World Series, it was the Yankees over Brooklyn 4 games to 3.
- In the NFL championship game, it was NY Giants 47 - Chicago 7.
- NFL Player of the Year was Frank Gifford of the NY Giants.
- The Heisman Trophy went to Paul Horning of Notre Dame.
- The national champions of College Football was Oklahoma - for the 2nd straight year.
- The national champions of College Basketball was the University of San Francisco.
- The NBA champion was Philadelphia.
- Rocky Marciano retires as the undefeated Heavyweight Champ (43 knock-outs, 3 decisions). Floyd Patterson knocks-out Archi Moore to take the title.
What was happening at the movies:
- Best movie was Around the World in 80 Days.
- Best actor was Yul Bryner in The King and I.
- Best actress was Ingrid Bergman in Anastasia.
- Other great movies were:
- Ten Commandments (Charlton Heston)
- The Mountain (Spencer Tracy)
- Man with the Golden Arm (Frank Sinatra)
Memorable songs were:
- Till the end of time (Perry Como)
- Saturday night is the loneliest night of the week (Frank Sinatra)
- Deep in the heart of Texas (Bing Crosby)
What was happening in my life:
- In the Spring, I made a weekend visit to Oakland, and we went to Santa Cruz
- (Ma, Dad, Bet, Tom, Ele, Denage, Yvette, and I). The thing I remembered most about it was Yvette’s first ride on the merry-go-round (at age 4) she was almost terrorized by it.
- I made my first visit to the Crocker Art Museum in Sacramento. It was originally built as the Victorian residence of the wealthy Crocker Family in 1873. Later, it was donated to the city for use as an Art Museum, one of its most famous paintings is titled Sunday Morning at the Mines. It portrays a group of lusty miners still in drunken celebration after a wild Saturday night.
- In early June right after school was out. Tom made his 2nd Solo Visit to Sacramento.
- On Saturday we visited the State Capitol Building and saw such things as the Monument of Columbus and Queen Isabella. We also visited the Sacramento Zoo in Land Park where I had an unexpected collision with one of the keepers. Zoo chow went "every-which-way". On Sunday, Tom and I fished at the Cosumnes River for the first time. It was a hot summer day and we took along a large watermelon for lunch. We caught our first Cosumnes Spotted Bass.
- On another trip to Oakland on a weekend, we had one of our family picnics in Golden Gate Park - memories of days gone by. Denage and Yvette were now the "kids" of the family – they were my older sister Ele’s daughters. We visited Fisherman’s Wharf and made a stop at Fort Point at the Golden Gate. The Fort and its spectacular setting beneath the Golden Gate Bridge, was a regular "landmark" for us now on our trips to SF.
- Once again in early September just before school started, Hank, Tom, and I took another overnight fishing trip. This time, we fished and camped at the Tuolumne River near Groveland on Highway 120. We only caught a few trout this time, but we did have a memorable "middle-of-the-night" experience when at 3 a.m. we were awakened by a noisy group of hunters and their dogs who barged through our camp in pursuit of a pesky Raccoon.
- In late September, my younger brother Rich and his wife Barbara moved to Sacramento. Rich had been offered his first teaching job at Sacramento State. He only stayed for one teaching year, and then transferred in the fall of 1957 to San Diego State University.
- During their stay in Sacramento, I visited them a few times on Friday nights. They lived in an apartment in the River Park area near the college. By now, I was well "entrenched" in Sacramento. I had a job that I liked, I had frequent trips home to visit in Oakland, and I was doing well in my studies at Sacramento City College.
- I was happy with my life as a Catholic, I was making progress in my art studies, and I was becoming an avid fisherman. For the first time, I was beginning to find a place for myself in life.
< ---- What was happening in 1955
What was happening in 1956 ---- >
An extraordinary collection of photographs
Fishing Baja 2000
Fishing the Sea of Cortez off Cerralvo Island
Santa Cruz Beach Boardwalk
The area has held up well over the years as a great ocean-front recreation area.
Merry-go-round in Spring 1956
My niece was 4 and scared to death.
The Cocoanut Grove at the Boardwalk
Merry-go-round at the Boardwalk
The Crocker Art Museum
In 1956, it was the largest fine arts gallery in Sacramento.
Inside of the Crocker Art Museum
It was originally built in 1873 as the Victorian residence for the wealthy Crocker family.
California State Capitol
My younger brother and I visited here in the Summer of 1956.
Statue of Columbus in the Capitol Rotunda
It portrays Columbus appealing to Queen Isabella of Spain for funds to explore the "New World".
Highway 16 on the way to the Cosumnes River
My brother and I fished here for Bass for the first time.
Perkins on Highway 16
The small town of Perkins sits on Highway 16. It was once a stagecoach stop on the long ride from Reno to Sacramento.
A nice 2-lbs Spotted Bass
We caught it in the Cosumnes using small frogs as bait.
Family Picnic in Golden Gate Park
Just like when I was a kid, only this time I was one of the adults.
Fisherman's Wharf in San Francisco
Although touristy, there are many great sights to see, such as the boats below and the old crab stands that have been a part of the area for decades.
Fort Point under the Golden Gate Bridge
Often overlooked because of the massive bridge that soars over it, Fort Point is an interesting visit and offers spectacular views of the Bridge.
We passed through here on our way to fish the Tuolumne River in September before school started.
Rainbow Trout from the Tuolumne
It was not the best day of fishing, but my little brother caught this nice Rainbow.
Fishing the Tuolumne River
The river was in a deep canyon at this location and it was a steep climb down from Highway 120.
More Photos of San Francisco's Fisherman's Wharf
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