About Stockton, CaliforniaI have collected the following factoids over the years (which to the best of my knowledge is accurate...if you have more details, confirmations, or information that I am incorrect here, please let me know!) If you have more for me, please e-mail me (firstname.lastname@example.org) so that I can add to my list. Here is what Wikipedia has to say...
Holt invented the caterpillar tractor in Stockton. It was invented because wheeled vehicles tended to sink into the marshy land around Stockton. Tanks, farm and construction equipment are the main users of this invention.
Stockton has the furthest east deep-water channel on the West Coast. Ships from all over the world visit Stockton. This is why it was, at least for a time called California's Sunrise Seaport.
Stockton has a large airport. The airport is under utilized for commercial purposes, but it is used for touch-and-go landings by C-5 Galaxy jets and is capable of handling 747s. I understand that the Stockton airport was a key location for the transport of supplies during World War II.
University of the Pacific (UOP) is a respected university throughout the country, and is right here in Stockton.
San Joaquin Delta College, Stockton's community college is a fantastic school. It was the recipient of the first Electron Microscope outside of Los Angeles and San Francisco in California! Delta has one of the largest collections of hand- bells in existence. The Warren Atherton Theater on the Delta campus is large, and has been praised by virtually every conductor or performer to visit the theater. In addition to the academic qualities of Delta, it was voted the most beautiful college campus in the United States in 1992!
Washington Mutual -- formally American Savings Bank -- formally American Savings & Loan -- formally State Savings -- was the largest Savings and Loan in the United States up until recent years when efforts to strengthen the S&L resulted in a sizing-down. American Savings Bank is headquartered in Stockton, is a major employer, and recently constructed an attractive building in downtown Stockton.
Nugget Distributors, (an organization under Premier Foodservice Distributors of America, Inc.) is one of the largest foodservice cooperatives of its kind in the country. This cooperative combines the buying power of over 150 independent foodservice companies. The entire sales for this cooperative are in excess of five billion dollars. Next time you visit a restaurant take a peek at the sugar, you may find it was distributed by Nugget. In 2002 UniPro Foodservice, Inc., a competing foodservice group merged with Premier and eliminated the Premier company. Most staff were laid off and the few remaining mostly relocated to Atlanta, Georgia. Fortunately the Nugget label continues and is UniPro's largest private label. UniPro is the largest buyer of food in the United Stated with over 27 Billion in purchases (May 2003).
Duraflame fireplace logs by California Cedar Products is located in Stockton. Every Duraflame log you see is a little piece of Stockton.
Stockton also has a hat manufacturer, Dorfman Pacific. When in Maui a while back, I found hats from here! I now own two Dorfman Pacific hats – check your labels!
The famous paddle-wheel ships "Delta Queen" and "Delta King" were constructed in Stockton. The Delta King is currently in Sacramento. The Delta Queen is still operating on the Mississippi. They were constructed just under the I-5 bridge over the channel.
Stockton once had a brick maker. Around the world you'll find bricks with "STOCKTON" stamped on them. While in Hawaii I was pleased to see a shopping center with thousands of bricks advertising our city.
The hit song from the 1940's
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Forty Nine Drug Company is the oldest pharmacy in California, it is currently located on 937 North Yosemite. They have three other interesting factoids:
- They had the first phone in Stockton.
- Their phone number was:1 Later, because of the population boom, their phone number was: 1849.
- They had the first brick building in the Central Valley, constructed from bricks brought over from San Francisco.
Several movies have been filmed in Stockton over the years. Some contained quite a bit of filming while others small portions. The downtown buildings appear in many backdrops, the delta is often used in "Vietnam" movies, and UOP has been featured several times. The following is not a complete list, but a hefty one:
- All the King's Men
- An American Murder
- The Big Country
- Bound for Glory
- Cool Hand Luke
- Fat City
- Friendly Fire
- Glory Days
- God's Little Acre
- High Time
- Jungle Wolf II
- More American Graffiti
- Oklahoma Crude
- Porgy & Bess
- Sam Whiskey
- Strawberry Statement
- The Sure Thing
- Valentino's Return
- Valley Girl
- World's Greatest Athlete
- American Graffiti II
- Atlanta Child Murders
- Hot Shots! Part Duex
- Raiders of the Lost Ark (Indiana Jone's University)
- 7 Brides for 7 Brothers
- This is Spinal Tap
- Blood Alley
- Animal House
- Dead Man on Campus
- Cyote (not widely distributed)
- Coast to Coast
- Blind Man Sees Farthest (short flick)
- I also recall a movie that used the historic El Dorado School about 1979, maybe something like "Welcome Home Mrs. ???"
- And who could forget "The Big Valley"?
- Take the Money and Run
- Dirty Mary Crazy Larry
Many entertainers from the 1940's (i.e., Bob Hope, etc.) have visited Stockton. Also many rock groups perform at Spanos Center and at the County Fair.
Stockton has one of the highest rated fire departments in the country.
Spanos, a predominate family in Stockton is owner of the San Diego Chargers, is a significant land developer and has brought countless politicians to the Stockton area.
The Grupe family, significant land developers and farmers, are located in Stockton.
Stockton's old neighborhoods contain many old homes (late 1800’s) -- many restored -- which are rich with personality and character.
Few large cities (250,000+ people) have as many beautiful large trees as Stockton does. Combined with the water, the trees help make Stockton feel smaller than it really is.
Stockton is the county seat for San Joaquin County.
Graham Brothers Inc. produced trucks for Dodge in Stockton, around 1921. I understand the location of this plant was where Harding Way and Waterloo Road meet (currently a Lipton plant).
Stockton is a major center for railroads. Southern Pacific -- Western Pacific -- Tidewater Southern, now part of Union Pacific and Santa Fe, now part of Burlington Northern Railroad call Stockton home. In addition two other small railroads, Central California Traction and Stockton Terminal & Eastern Railroads are located here.
The "California Raisins" are from San Joaquin County.
Stockton is Pacific Bell's northern switching office for the 209 Area Code.
Sharp Army Depot is located in Stockton.
Rough and Ready Island Naval base is located in Stockton.
The Fantastic Four (comic books and cartoons) originated in Stockton, it begins: "It was a dark and stormy night in Stockton, California". Can someone confirm (scan that line from the comic book?)
Chris Isaak has been in at least one movie (Married to the Mob) and has sung popular songs, such as "Wicked Game" and "Can't Do a Thing to Stop Me".
Stockton is about as central California as you can get. Within two hours you can be in a large variety of different places -- the state capital (Sacramento), "The City" (San Francisco), into the mountains, the coast, trees, lakes, fields, or anyplace you could want to be.
Stockton has CHARACTER. It has history. It has a varied ethnic mixture, helping to provide an exciting assortment of restaurants and people.
Tillie Lewis Foods, who was responsible for a large variety of foods was based in Stockton (I believe after her death it was sold).
The famous baseball poem "Casey at the Bat" was written in Stockton (affectionately known as "Mudville" in those times). The poem appeared in the San Francisco Examiner on June 3, 1888. If you are familiar with the Mudville Nine (formally the Stockton Ports) baseball team, you know that their mascot is none other than... Casey! Casey at the Bat has been brought to the screen five times, including a Disney cartoon feature, with a follow-up piece about Casey years later fathering all girls and discovers they're all crack baseball players.
Stockton was known as "Tuleburg", "Mudville", and "Fat City". It was later named by Captain Weber to honor his friend Commodore Stockton.
Commodore Stockton was a world traveler and has at least one other city (that I know of) named after him (in Texas).
Effective July 17, 1998 the San Francisco 49ers are using the University of the Pacific’s football stadium (A.A. Stagg Stadium – where the UOP Tigers play) as their summer training center.
Amos Alonzo Stagg was an All-American End in 1889, world famous coach at Chicago and a leader of Olympic teams. He went on to become a successful coach and teach at COP (College of the Pacific, now UOP). Stockton honors him with a high school named after him.
Stockton was proclaimed the All America City in 1999.
Janet Leigh (the original "scream queen" from the Psycho shower scene) graduated from UOP. Her daughter (Jamie Lee Curtis (another "Scream Queen" from the Halloween movies) also went to UOP for a short time).
Maxine Hong Kingston Award-winning author of WOMAN WARRIOR: MEMOIRS OF A GIRLHOOD AMONG GHOSTS and CHINA MEN; both books set in her childhood home of Stockton. Both books won a National Book Critics Circle Award.
Stockton was the first community in California to have an American name, all others being of Spanish or Native American origin.
U-Haul established their first rental store in Stockton in 1975. For some interesting factoids about U-Haul and their great American journey, click here.
Connell Motor Truck used to be on Highway 99, it was home to the first Peterbilt truck dealership.
Stockton isn't perfect -- far from it. The national media has put out the word about children being shot in our school yards, about gang violence, crime, welfare fraud, bankruptcy, and drugs. The national media has delivered what people thrive on – bad news. The national media does not boast our rich history and qualities. If nothing else, I hope that after reading this, if you are living in Stockton you'll respect it a little more. If you're not in Stockton, perhaps you'll think a little better of us. To me, Stockton is, Someplace Special.