This Week in Sacramento History Aug. 6-12

Aug. 6, 1990: About 50,000 Sacramento Municipal Utility District customers lose power because of a wildfire that spreads through some 200 acres between Cal Expo and the American River Bike Trail. Despite record-breaking heat (109 degrees downtown), firefighters contain the blaze in about three hours.

Quote: "My hat is off to the environmentalists for saving the spotted owl. Another company -- Cornett Lumber -- joins those already shut down and another 50 people are added to the jobless, but the spotted owl has been saved." -- Sharon Evans, lamenting the loss of logging jobs because of the preservation of spotted owl habitat

Aug. 7, 1935: Brig. Gen. Frank Andrews, Brig. Gen. Henry H. Arnold and Lt. Col. Clarence Tinker visit Sacramento and assure Arthur S. Dudley, of the Sacramento Chamber of Commerce, that Mather Field will be reoccupied and expanded as soon as President Roosevelt signs the Wilcox air defense bills.

Quote: "One marvels that the California Legislature has functioned as well as it has when it is considered its members are ridiculously under compensated and poorly equipped for the work ... " -- Franklin Hichborn, journalist and state government expert, warning that low pay is undermining the Assembly and inviting graft

Aug. 8, 1971: Tomorrow, the Sacramento County Supervisors begin hearings to discuss a proposed $195 million budget. That figure is 28 percent over last year's budget. County residents could face a property tax hike from $4.35 to $5.15 per $100 assessed valuation. County Executive Carl Johnson blames higher costs for social services for the increase.

Quote: "The more expensive a political campaign, the more a candidate and his party have to seek help from big donors. This simply increases the opportunities for well-heeled special interests to obligate politicians and position themselves to obtain future favors in return." -- Bee editorial, supporting a U.S. Senate bill that would curb presidential campaign spending

Aug. 9, 1906: The Western Pacific Railway has begun construction of the main line 21/2 miles south of Sacramento. Forty men and 110 horses are at work. The first phase of road building is happening at Colby Ranch. Another work crew is grading for the railroad on the Cippa Ranch, five miles north of the city.

Quote: "It is stated, as a matter of scientific observation, that the jar in April last had the effect of moving Mount Tamalpais 5 feet 6 inches farther north. It is an old saying that faith moves mountains, but an earthquake beats faith all hollow." -- Bee editorial

Aug. 10, 1961: The new $7 million Hale's department store opens in the Arden Fair Shopping Center. Present at the ribbon-cutting: Mayor James McKinney, Chamber President Richard Hayden and Newton Hale, director of the parent company, Broadway-Hale Stores Inc. The store is 50,000 square feet larger than the Hale's store downtown. Also opening at the mall is Smith's, a men's and boys clothing store.

Quote: "Both liberals and conservatives have been guilty of concentrating on popular and emotional appeals and attractive 'images.' Force of reason has become a neglected political weapon." -- Bee editorial, bemoaning the marketing of political candidates like consumer products

Aug. 11, 1922: The War Department announces that $95,000 of the $42.2 million appropriated by Congress for local aid to navigation will be spent on the Sacramento River. The allocation will finance regular maintenance work by the U.S. Army Engineers.

Quote: "I want my country to have no entangling alliances with European or Asiatic nations. Let us go our own way and not join with any nation or group of nations. It has been the golden sovereignty of this country since the days of Washington to make its own destiny." -- U.S. Sen. Hiram Johnson, speaking against the proposed League of Nations

Aug. 12, 1948: State Architect Anson Boyd revises the estimated cost of the State Capitol Annex project from $4 million to $7-$7.25 million. Boyd says rising construction prices and an expanded plan are responsible for the staggering cost of the proposed five-story building. The annex will adjoin the east side of the Capitol and occupy a space 200-by-275 feet. It will provide a suite of offices for the governor that overlooks the southeast portion of Capitol Park.

Quote: "It is quite confusing. The Communists, whose spies are supposed to have gotten our best atomic bomb secrets, are the very ones arguing that the secrets should be made available to all nations." -- Bee editorial