People’s history of California

An old wooden loom, in the style invented by E. Gilmore, spun out precise weaves and patterns in one corner. A man named Guitar Mac played a blues version of “Rock Me Baby” on his steel-body guitar across the room. And, at least for a day, the library at CSUS reflected some of the historical and cultural character of California’s unsung working class.

The event on November 22 was a preview for a proposed museum to be built on Del Paso Boulevard on the corners of Beaumont Street and Darina Avenue in Sacramento.

The California Central Valley Museum of Working Class Art and Culture will feature historical exhibitions of the Central Valley, from Bakersfield to Redding. “Our museum will be very open to the public and guided by the community,” said Joe Moore, the founder and director of the museum, which is due to open on Labor Day 2008. Allen Warren and his firm, New Faze Development, have doled out $1 million in support of the venture. New Faze is hoping to revitalize the blighted area of Del Paso with new restaurants, condos and offices as well. “New Faze is committed to the revitalization of Del Paso Boulevard in its entirety,” said New Faze spokesperson Maria Thomas. “[T]his project is definitely a key catalyst to the redevelopment process on the boulevard.”