brush were blackened by the wind-whipped flames. There was damage in
sections of Whiting Woods and Verdugo Mountains, Chevy Chase and Glenoaks
Canyon. Even Eagle Rock had seven homes destroyed, and one home was
consumed in Burbank.
Hundreds of firefighters were called to Glendale to handle the fires,
the first which started at 5 a.m. in Whiting Woods and raced up the
Verdugo Mountains in a northwesterly direction.
A second fire started in Chevy Chase Canyon north of the golf course
and swept down the canyon. Greatly worsening the situation: Santa Ana
winds gusting up to 90 mph.
Hundreds of people were evacuated from their homes. Glendale Community
College students were fighting the fire at the edge of the campus using
Sections of Glendale were declared a disaster area and Gov. Edmund
Brown paid a visit to Glendale to inspect the damage. The fire started
when Southern California Edison power lines were knocked down by heavy
"We had some very dry years in the early 1960s, and the brush was very
dry," said Glendale resident Bob Gregg, an amateur climatologist. "The
Verdugos have not burned since then, and the brush is getting very thick
and that's dangerous. It is 8 to 10 feet tall."
The fires of 1964 contributed to the floods of 1969 that were the
worst in Glendale since 1938, Gregg said. Glendale received 150% of its
yearly rainfall in January and February and that proved to be too much
with hillsides that had lost their cover. Chevy Chase Canyon had some of
the most severe flooding, he said.
"There were a lot of homes flooded and mudslides in the hillside areas
because they were so saturated," Gregg said. "It was an El Nino year. It
was typical Southern California. There is no happy medium. Nothing falls,
and then everything falls."
TOP STORIES OF THE 1960s
Glendale becomes the ninth largest city in California by edging ahead
of Pasadena. It has 119,442 people.
1960 - City dedicates new police building that will be replace in the
next two years.
1961 - Crescenta Valley High School opens.
1962 - Glendale (2) Freeway is started.
1963 - Glendale has its first rain on Jan. 10 after 207 days.
1964 - Fires burn large sections of the Verdugo Mountains, San Rafael
Hills and Chevy Chase Canyon.
1964 -- Fire damages Glendale High School.
1966 - Glendale's $8-million Fashion Center is opened.
1966 - Glendale Municipal Services Building, the one on stilts that
cost $2 million, opens.
1967 - Construction starts on Ventura (134) Freeway.
1969 - Floods in January and February cause deaths and destruction.