Santa Clarita Valley History In Pictures

Year in Review: 1981.

  • For the umpteenth time, local leaders pursue the formation of their own city. (It would happen in 1987.)
  • A weak economy spurs layoffs at College of the Canyons.

  • Scott & Ruth Newhall's 1880s Piru Mansion burns to the ground when a contractor uses a small blowtorch to strip paint during renovations.

  • Country music legend and Sand Canyon resident Cliffie Stone wins the race for Honorary Mayor of our valley.
  • Population of the entire SCV is pegged at 78,146. (Note: This is not just the area that would become the future city. As of 2019, the city population is >200,000; the comparable population of the entire SCV is >300,000.)

  • Mann 6 Theaters opens in Valencia. SCV's first multiplex cinema.

  • Annual Benefit Auction raises $88,000 for the SCV Boys & Girls Club.

  • Crowds flock to Castaic Lake as summer temperatures reach 109 degrees. Three drown.
  • Wildfires scorch thousands of acres in Tick Canyon and San Francisquito Canyon.
  • Facing strong community opposition, IT Corporation finally loses its battle to site a toxic waste dump in the Santa Clara River. The area would instead be developed into Jake's Way.

  • HMNMH petitions the state for its own Health Facility Planning Area so it can add beds and services for the growing SCV population. As long as it is lumped together with San Fernando Valley hospitals, it can't.

  • Newhall's brand-new Western Walk of Fame (now called Walk of Western Stars) kicks off with the induction of Gene Autry, Tom Mix and William S. Hart.
  • On a Sunday, three Saugus teenagers fire guns at Santa Clarita Park and Arroyo Seco Junior High School, narrowly missing basketball players and others. A bullet passes through one girl's hair.

  • Newly restored 1888 Saugus Train Station, rescued from demolition in 1980, is dedicated at Hart Park.
  • HMNMH Auxiliary hosts its first-ever Holiday Home Tour to raise funds for the hospital.

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