:: Camp Anza Collection

Introduction

Camp Anza was a WWII army camp named in honor of Spanish explorer, Juan Bautista de Anza. It was built on 1,239 acres bought in 1942 that had been part of the W. J. Hole ranch. The U. S. government paid $197,688 for the land, and after construction of the buildings, had spent over $2 million. The function of the camp was as an embarkation point or staging center through which more than 600,000 soldiers passed to the Pacific Theatre of war, both coming and going. On occasion there were more than 20,000 men housed at the camp at one time. The Union Pacific Railroad built a special siding to serve the camp and men were brought into Camp Anza by train from all parts of the U. S. Camp Anza was closed 30 April 1946. After which the area became known as Anza Village and, later, Arlanza.

This collection contains photographs, masthead samples, and a printer's die for the Anza Zip. Most importantly, this collection includes a run of the camp newsletter, the Anza Zip, dating from Feb. 13, 1943 (vol. 1, no. 2) to Feb. 21, 1946 (vol. 4, no. 3).

Regular features in the Anza Zip included: The Wolf cartoon by Sansone, Sports, Azna Antics, Chaplain's Corner, Zip Presents, Thru the Keyhole, Theatre Notes, Zip-a-Lip, and in later issues, the Digest of the World's War News and "pin-up" style photos of the then Hollywood Starlets.

Although brief, the collection gives offers an accurate account of camp military life. An index consisting of headline and biographies that appear in the newspaper in included.

The collection is one linear foot and is contained in one box.

History of Camp Anza

Camp Anza was located in what is currently referred to as the Arlanza area in the City of Riverside. The camp was located on the Southwest corner of Van Buren and Arlington Avenues and totaled approximately 1,240 acres. The Army purchased from private parties the property for Camp Anza in 1942-43. It was primarily used as a staging area in WWII for troops embarking from Los Angeles Port. The camp was later declared surplus and was sold in 1946.

Scope and Content

The Camp Anza collection consists of two series. Series one contains 156 issues (in fair condition) of the Anza Zip, a local military publication, dating from Feb. 13, 1943 (vol. 1, no. 2) to Feb. 21, 1946 (vol. 4, no. 3). Series two consists of three folders containing 26 items including photographs and a printer's die for the Anza Zip.

Series Description

Series I – Newspapers

The Anza Zip details the concerns and issues at the time. The newspapers are organized by volume, number, and date. Each issue ranges from 4 – 6 pages in length. This is the only known run of newspapers from Camp Anza. The first half (vol. 1, no. 2 – vol. 2, no. 31) are printed on gloss print paper and measure 9.5" x 12.5". The remaining newspapers (vol. 2, no. 32 – vol. 4, no. 3) are printed on ordinary newsprint and measure 11.5" x 17".

There are some discrepancies regarding the Anza Zip that the researcher should be aware of. They are as follows:

vol. 2, no. 40 – Has both Nov. 9 and Nov. 15 dates.

vol. 3, no. 12 – Is the May 3, 1945 issue.

vol. 3, no. 13 – Is mis-numbered vol. 3, no. 12.

vol. 3, no. 13 – Should be dated May 26, 1945.

vol. 3, no. 27 – Should be vol. 3, no. 28.

(vol. 3, no. 27 – Should be vol. 3, no. 29). problem here. which one is it? no. 28 or 29?

Folder 1 – Anza Zip, vol. 1, no. 2, Feb. 1943 – vol. 4, no. 3, Feb. 1946

Series II – Photographs and Miscellaneous

This series consists of three folders which contain black and white photos, a photocopy from a page of the Arlington Times (dated Dec. 4, 1942), aerial photographs, and printing artifacts.

Folder 1 – Newspaper articles and photographs

Folder 2 – Camp Anza aerial photographs

Folder 3 – Anza Zip newspaper artifacts

References

Final environment assessment Army Camp Anza underground storage tank removal and disposal. Chambers Group Inc., Riverside, CA. February 1995.

A Condensed History of the 503rd Parachute Regimental Combat Team. Abbott, Donald E. 1997.

The Philadelphia-Margherita Connection: An American Hospital in Assam. Kalita Jugal. 1990.

Local History vertical files at the Riverside Public Library

Local History