Betty Bagby Lewis

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Betty Lewis (1925–2008) grew up in Santa Cruz, California and attended school there for 12 years then going to Salinas Jr. College. She started writing historical articles for the Watsonville Register Pajaronian in 1974. Her weekly column titled "That Was Watsonville" appeared every Thursday evening in that newspaper. She has also written articles for the Santa Cruz Sentinel, Salinas Californian and various other publications. She authored nine historical books of Watsonville and surrounding areas.

Works[edit]

  • "Holy City: Riker's Religious Roadside Attraction" Riker or the "Emancipator" and founder of Holy City, California. Holy City founded in 1919 as road side attraction for motorist traveling the Old Santa Cruz Highway between San Jose and Santa Cruz offered auto service and philosophy for all those willing to stop.
  • "William H. Weeks, Architect"
  • Monterey Bay Yesterday
  • "Watsonville Memories That Linger - vols. I & 2"
  • Watsonville : Memories that Linger
  • "Victorian Homes of Watsonville"
  • "Watsonville Images by Edgar L. Clarkk; pioneer Watsonville photographer"

Awards[edit]

  • SCOPE Award for research and writing 1977 & 1978
  • Hubert Wyckoff Memorial Award - 1979
  • Woman Of the Year/Watsonville/1987 - 1993
  • Mabel Rowe Curtis Award for research and writing
  • Santa Cruz Historical Trust Award for book on architect William Weeks
  • Rotary Club Paul Harris award - for excellence in contributing to community by way of writing, speaking, preserving history 1996
  • Ten research grants from San Jose University

Publications[edit]

  • 1974 – Victorian Homes of Wat. – revised 1981
  • 1974 – Walking & Driving Tour of Wat.
  • 1975 – Highlights in the history of WAT. Wat. Fed. Sav.
  • 1976 – Wat. Memories That Linger – three printings
  • 1977 – Monterey Bay Yesterday – 3 printings
  • 1986 – Vignette Wat history on KOMY radio station
  • 1978 – Wat. Yesterday – 100 radio programs
  • 1980 – Wat. Memories That Linger Vol. II
  • 1985 – W.H. Weeks, architect 1989 reprinted
  • 1992 – Holy City, Santa Cruz mountains reprinted 1994
  • 1995 – Edgar L. Clark photo book PVHA

Grants from Sourissaeu Academy San Jose State University[edit]

  • 1973 & 1974 - research of Watsonville
  • 1976 – Research of William H. Weeks, Architect
  • 1977 – Research of Gilroy, California
  • 1979, 1982–1985 – newspapers on microfilm
  • 1986 & 1987 – research of Carnegie Libraries
  • 1988 – Research of Holy City

Awards And Honors[edit]

  • 1976 & 1877 from Historical Preservation
  • 1977 & 1978 – Scope Award for writing
  • 1977 – 1st woman to be Grand Marshal of 4 July parade
  • 1979 – Research & writing from Friends of Octagon
  • 1979 – Hubert Wyckoff Memorial award PVHA
  • 1987 – Woman Of the Year – Chamber of Commerce
  • 1993 – Mabel Rowe Curtis – research & writing
  • 1995 – Research, writing – S.C. Historical Trust
  • 1996 – Paul Harris award – Rotary

Watsonville-Register Pajaronian Watsonville Register-Pajaronian– 1974 random articles[edit]

  • "That Was Watsonville" (every Thursday since then)
  • 2005 – City Council of Watsonville named her official city historian
  • 2006 – Memorial bench in city plaza

Married Monte Lewis of Watsonville in 1946 and they have four children, seven grandchildren and two identical twin great grandsons.