When the Union Pacific Railroad and Southern Pacific Railroad merged in 1997 and the former did a housecleaning of its inventory,
many of the Union Pacific's archival materials were saved. The records that were donated to USC were chiefly those that were
generated in the 1940s and 50s as part of the Tidelands controversies, concerning the Los Angeles / Long Beach / Wilmington
harbor areas, and documenting channels, wetlands, islands, elevations, and shoreline. In addition to many maps, drawings,
and historical files, the records consist of many volumes of land surveys (done by civil engineer Francis Bates) which were
done in the old tidelands area in the 1930s and 40s. Mr. Bates also obtained copies of many of the original rancho documents
for this area (e.g. Rancho Los Cerritos) to provide a complete history of the harbor, onshore and offshore.
The story of the Union Pacific Railroad's involvement with oil and the Tidelands goes back to at least 1911 when the State
of California granted the City of Long Beach its tidelands properties for development of commerce, navigation, fisheries,
and recreation under a public trust doctine, meaning any development and revenues from such development would have to benefit
the state as a whole rather than merely neighboring communities. (The tidelands are defined as land and waterways from the
mean high tide to three miles offshore.)
30.0 Linear feet
12 boxes, 3 mapcase drawers
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