Verdugo Views: Remembering a former Glendale first lady

In 1963, the city’s first lady, Cecelia Logan Barnes, was profiled in the Glendale News-Press by Women’s Editor Betty Preston.

The article, complete with several photos, described her as a glamorous grandmother and a native daughter of the city that her husband, Herman, led as mayor.

Preston wrote that Barnes had a longstanding interest in city government, as her father, the late Oliver C. Logan, “was an inveterate spectator at council meetings and many a former city father remembers the peppery little pioneer, who was more often than not vocal on the civic matters closest to his heart.”

Preston predicted that since Barnes shared her husband’s pride in the city, “she would undoubtedly attend a few council meetings herself.”

Barnes described herself as a wife, mother and grandmother. Her daughter, Carole Allen, had four girls and her son, Tom, and his wife, Vorda, had three sons.

But she had more than children and grandchildren to occupy her. She was secretary-treasurer to the firm of Herman E. Barnes, Inc.; secretary for the Logan Foundation, Inc., and a fiduciary trustee on the board of the First Bond and Mortgage Co.

Between these and her household accounts, she kept five sets of books and wrote checks from nine different checkbooks.

Barnes also enjoyed entertaining, liked to cook and played golf at least once a week.

On top of that, she was active in the Lioness Club and the Women’s Athletic Club’s golf department and the Tuesday Afternoon Club (she started its Mannequin Guild and curated its Maids and Matrons Department). But she had recently cut back because she and her husband liked to travel.

Barnes was born in Tropico to Minnie Bell Andrews Logan and Oliver C. Logan, known to many as “Ollie,” who had come here in 1896 with his parents. They purchased a ranch at what is now Wilson Avenue and Verdugo Road, according to an Independent newspaper on file in the Glendale Library’s Special Collections.

Later, young Logan purchased the Superior Market and peddled meat in a covered sales wagon drawn by two horses.

Logan married Minnie Bell Andrews in 1903 in Los Angeles and the couple moved to this city in 1904, first living on a 25-acre ranch at what is now West Broadway near Columbus.

Later, they moved to Central and California (where Sears is located), then to South Central near Los Feliz, and then back to North Central near Stocker. They had two children, daughter Cecelia and son Wilbur (he lived in La Cañada at the time of Preston’s article).

Cecelia graduated from Glendale High and attended the University of Wyoming for four months before returning home to marry Barnes, whom she had met during her senior year in high school.

By 1963, the Barnes were living on Arboles Drive, “in a home geared to comfortable living and active entertaining,” Preston said.

Herman Barnes went on to serve a two-year term that ended in 1965. At the time, mayors frequently served two-year terms.

For more on past mayors visit the city’s website.


Readers Write:

Brad Barnes recalls his grandmother, Cecelia Barnes, with great affection. She frequently came to his classroom at R. D. White School with slide shows of her most recent trips.

“It was always very entertaining and I was very proud that it was my grandmother,” he said.

He and his friends often went out biking and were always welcome to stop by his grandparents’ house for great food and 7UPs.

Sometimes, when Brad or his siblings were ill, they went to visit Grandma Barnes. “We always seemed to get better on a diet of 7UP and mints, plus a few games of gin rummy.”

Barnes remembers the holidays: “She had a long table for Easter lunch and they set up croquet on the perfectly manicured dichondra lawn. She always had a plastic Christmas tree which, as far as we knew, no one else had. And they would take us to see Santa Claus at Bullock's in Pasadena and dinner at the Sawmill. Then to top it off, Grandma would give us each $1, plus whatever the applicable tax was, and we would go into the five-and-dime and buy our first Christmas present of the season.”


If you have questions, comments or memories to share, please write to Verdugo Views, c/o News-Press, 202 W. 1st St., 2nd Floor, Los Angeles, CA 90012. Please include your name, address and phone number.

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