Thursday, September 17, 2015


On September 9th, California celebrated its 165th year as a state. In honor of the Golden State's birthday, this two-part episode of the Politi-Cal Podcast looks at the history of statehood in California.

This includes how California first became a state and how people have tried (over 200 times) to divide it up into more states since then. These efforts range from serious (that time the state legislature and the governor actually did vote to split up the state) to silly (that time protesters near the Oregon border stopped traffic and handed out flyers proclaiming their independence) to comically bizarre (that time a professional golfer / actor tried to turn a World War II ship into an independent nation / tax-free seafood processing plant off the California coast). Enjoy!


Want to share your knowledge of California's statehood with friends and followers?
Check out our Image Gallery for graphics from this week's episode...


Want to explore even more about statehood in California?
Learn straight from from the people who covered it first...


Jane Braxton Little (The Sacramento Bee), 17 March 2015

Glenda Anderson (The Press Democrat), 3 March 2015

John Healey (Los Angeles Times), 28 January 2015

John Wildermuth (SFGate), 13 September 2014

Jim Miller (The Sacramento Bee), 12 September 2014

Andrew Creasey (Appeal-Democrat), 23 July 2014

James Erwin (Mental Floss), 21 July 2014

Alice Walton (89.3 KPCC), 16 July 2014

Katy Steinmetz (TIME), 15 July 2014

Record Searchlight (Chico Enterprise-Record), 24 June 2014

Staff Writer (Los Angeles Times), 4 June 2014

Eric Vodden (Appeal-Democrat), 16 April 2014

Michael R. Blood (AP/USA Today), 21 February 2014

Bianca Barragan (Curbed LA), 5 February 2014

Greg Baumann (Silicon Valley Business Journal), 4 February 2014

Lee Romney (Los Angeles Times), 23 January 2014

David Siders (The Sacramento Bee), 11 December 2013

Peter Hecht (The Sacramento Bee), 10 October 2013

Dennis Hevesi (The New York Times), 27 April 2012

Chris Dixon (The Inertia), 15 November 2011

Fred Swegles (The Orange County Register), 25 October 2011 (updated 21 August 2013)

Stan Statham (Record Searchlight), 17 July 2011

Steve Harvey (Los Angeles Times), 16 July 2011

Chris Clarke (KCET), 13 July 2011

Zach Behrens (KCET), 30 June 2011

Robert J. Lopez (Los Angeles Times), 30 June 2011

Nathan Masters (KCET), 14 April 2011

Warren Netz (Millbrae Library/San Mateo County Library), 4 March 2011

Scott Timberg (The New York Times), 12 December 2008

Pat Joseph (Grist), 13 May 2005

Christopher Hall (Via/AAA), September/October 2003

Jim Evans (Sacramento News & Review), 3 January 2002

Richard Cavendish (History Today), 9 September 2000 (Vol. 50)

Carl Ingram (Los Angeles Times), 19 September 1993

George Ramos (Los Angeles Times), 12 July 1993

Scott Armstrong (The Christian Science Monitor), 15 June 1993

Jennifer Warren (Los Angeles Times), 30 May 1992

Jennifer Warren (Los Angeles Times), 24 December 1991

Brad Knickerbocker (The Christian Science Monitor), 15 October 1991

AP (Observer-Reporter), 1 September 1972

Seymour Korman (Chicago Tribune), 21 June 1965

Walter Ames (Los Angeles Times), 10 December 1953


James Erwin (Greenwood Press), 2007

Chris Dixon (Chronicle Books), 2011

Stephen S. Birdsall, Eugene Palka, Jon Malinowski, & Margo L. Price (Wiley), 4 August 2008

Research, Data, & More Information:
California Department of Parks and Recreation

California Department of Parks and Recreation

California Legislative Analyst’s Office, 31 January 2014


Mark DiCamillo & Mervin Field (The Field Poll), December 11th 2013

William Henry Ellison (The Southwestern Historical Quarterly), October 1913 (Vol. 17, No. 2)

Ryan H. Fateh (Vanderbilt Journal of Transnational Law), May 29th 2013 (Vol. 46:899)


Dr. Troy Johnson (Cal State Long Beach/NPS)

Library of Congress, American Memory Collection

San Fernando Valley Historical Society
U.S. Supreme Court, Argued 13 November 1963, Decided 15 June 1964


Recording cleaned up and encoded for upload to Wikimedia Commons by W. Guy Finley
Licensed under the Creative Commons Attribution-Share Alike 2.0 Generic license (CC BY-SA 2.0)

Recorded by guitarguy1985 via SoundBible, Uploaded 1 June 2010
 Licensed under the Creative Commons Sampling Plus 1.0 license

Recorded by Mike Koenig via SoundBible, Uploaded 3 October 2011
Licensed under the Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial 3.0 United States license (CC BY-NC 3.0 US)

Recorded by Mike Koenig via SoundBible, Uploaded 4 April 2013
Licensed under the Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial 3.0 United States license (CC BY-NC 3.0 US)

Recorded by Mike Koenig via SoundBible, Uploaded 18 February 2011
Licensed under the Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial 3.0 United States license (CC BY-NC 3.0 US)

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