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“Bite-Size Bits of Local, National, and Global History”
Coalinga in Fresno County, California — The American West (Pacific Coastal)
 

Webb Building

Opened February 1906 – Destroyed by Earthquake May 1983

 
 
Webb Building Marker image. Click for full size.
By Barry Swackhamer, March 22, 2013
1. Webb Building Marker
Inscription. It was built by A.E. Webb, an Englishman, who came to join English friends A.P. May and Elgar Adams in homesteading on the Los Gatos. The building was two stories tall with a full basement. It was built as a monument to Coalinga’s future. The Webb Building was three months old on April 18, 1906, when it sustained damage to the parapet around the top, from the 8.3 San Francisco earthquake. Mr. Webb sold the building to Mr. Frank Berman in 1920. It was then known as the Berman Building for 55 years. Mr. Berman ran a department store until 1959, then sold it to his son Mr. J. Alfred Berman. J. Alfred Berman operated the business through 1974.

Mr. and Mrs. Mitsuo “Herb” Watanabe purchased the drug store in the Berman Building in 1965 from Mr. Lester Byers. The Watanabe’s purchased the building in 1975 from J. Alfred Berman.
 
Erected by Coalinga Lions Club.
 
Location. 36° 8.396′ N, 120° 21.629′ W. Marker is in Coalinga, California, in Fresno County. Marker is at the intersection of Coalinga Plaza (North 5th Street) and West Elm Street, on the right when traveling north on Coalinga Plaza (North 5th Street). Click for map. Marker is at or near this postal address: 200 Coalinga Plaza, Coalinga CA 93210, United States of America.
 
Other nearby markers.
Webb Building Marker image. Click for full size.
By Barry Swackhamer, March 22, 2013
2. Webb Building Marker
At least 8 other markers are within walking distance of this marker. The Earthquake of 1983 (a few steps from this marker); Amy Building (within shouting distance of this marker); 5th Street, Coalinga 1912 (within shouting distance of this marker); Crescent Meat Co. (within shouting distance of this marker); First National Bank of Coalinga (within shouting distance of this marker); Bordagaray’s (about 300 feet away, measured in a direct line); The Rockwell Building (about 300 feet away); Coalinga Opera House (about 400 feet away). Click for a list of all markers in Coalinga.
 
Also see . . .  USGS - Historic Earthquakes. Details of the 1983 earthquake that was centered near Coalinga.
This earthquake caused an estimated $10 million in property damage (according to the American Red Cross) and injured 94 people. Damage was most severe in Coalinga, where the 8-block downtown commercial district was almost completely destroyed. Here, buildings having unreinforced brick walls sustained the heaviest damage.
A link to three photos showing damage is provided. (Submitted on March 31, 2013.) 
 
Categories. Industry & Commerce
 
 
Credits. This page originally submitted on , by Barry Swackhamer of San Jose, California. This page has been viewed 308 times since then and 6 times this year. Photos:   1, 2. submitted on , by Barry Swackhamer of San Jose, California. • Syd Whittle was the editor who published this page. This page was last revised on June 16, 2016.
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