In 1907 the town's first cultural center and theatre, the Carmel Arts and Crafts Clubhouse, was built. Poets Austin and Sterling performed their "private theatricals" there.
By 1913, The Arts and Crafts Club had begun organizing lessons for aspiring painters, actors & craftsmen. Some of the most prominent painters in the United States, such as William Merritt Chase, Xavier Martinez, Mary DeNeale Morgan and C. Chapel Judson offered six weeks of instruction for $15.
In 1924, the Arts and Crafts Hall was built on an adjacent site. This new facility was renamed numerous times including the Abalone Theatre, the Filmarte, the Carmel Playhouse and, finally, the Studio Theatre of the Golden Bough. The original clubhouse, along with the adjoining theatre, burned down in 1949.
The facilities were rebuilt as a two-theatre complex, opening in 1952 as the Golden Bough Playhouse. A photo of the fire from 1949 was still on file 60 years later at the rebuilt theatre illustrating the loss to the city's culture and history. Source: Wikipedia.
In 1910, the Forest Theater, the first outdoor theater west of the Rockies, was built, with poet Mary Austin and actor/director Herbert Heron leading the endeavor. Numerous groups including the Forest Theater Society (1910) and the Western Drama Society (1911) presented plays and pageants.
The name "Carmel" was earlier applied to another place on the north bank of the Carmel River 13miles (21 km) east-southeast of the present-day Carmel. A post office called Carmel opened in 1889, closed in 1890, re-opened in 1893, moved in 1902, and closed for good in 1903.
In 1784, Father Serra, after one last tour of all the California missions, died and was buried at his request at the Mission in the Sanctuary of the San Carlos Church, next to father Crespi who had passed the previous year. He was buried with full military honors.
In 1902 James Frank Devendorf and Frank Powers, on behalf of the Carmel Development Company, filed a new subdivision map of the core village that became Carmel. The Carmel post office opened the same year. In 1910, the Carnegie Institution established the Coastal Laboratory, and a number of scientists moved to the area. Carmel incorporated in 1916.
In December of 1771, the transfer was complete as the new stockade of approximately 130x200 became the new Mission Carmel. Simple buildings of plastered mud were the first church and dwellings until a more sturdy structure was built of wood from nearby pine and cypress trees to last through the seasonal rains. This too was only a temporary church until a permanent stone edifice was built.
The Carmel-by-the-Sea area is permeated by Native American, early Spanish and American history. Most scholars believe that the Esselen-speaking people were the first Native Americans to inhabit the area of Carmel, but the Ohlone people pushed them south into the mountains of Big Sur around the 6th century. Source: Wikipedia.
Behind the Basilica, in the Munr?s courtyard, one will find the Munr?s Family Heritage Museum. It displays the treasured keepsakes of one prominent Monterey family. Its goal is to enhance every visitor's appreciation of their own unique legacy. Source: Mission San Carlos Borromeo del Rio Carmelo
The Mission at Carmel has significance beyond the history of Father Serra, who is sometimes called the "Father of California". It also contains the state's first library.
Adjacent to the Basilica, the Jo Mora Chapel Gallery houses the elaborate Serra Memorial Cenotaph, sculpted in 1924 by Jo Mora, of travertine marble and bronze. This museum is also the home to an art exhibit which changes periodically. Source: Mission San Carlos Borromeo del Rio Carmelo
After several years, the site re-opened as The Carmel Shakespeare Festival, with Herbert Heron as its director and, with the exception of the World War II years of 1943?44, the festival continued through the 1940s. Source: Wikipedia.
Original works and the plays of Shakespeare were the primary focus. The property was deeded to the City of Carmel-by-the-Sea in order to qualify for federal funding and, in 1939, the site became a Works Progress Administration (WPA) reconstruction project.
The Harry Downie Museum, located in the forecourt to the Basilica, houses interpretive displays and artifacts devoted to telling the restoration story of the Mission and the significance of Harry Downie?s efforts in the restoration. Source: Mission San Carlos Borromeo del Rio Carmelo