The Pearl Chase Society is an all volunteer, not-for-profit conservancy dedicated to preserving Santa Barbara’s historic architecture, landscapes and cultural heritage.

Few American communities possess the natural beauty, built environment, or civic spirit with which Santa Barbara is graced. Yet anyone familiar with our rich history knows that these attributes did not happen by chance, but rather were the result of years of thoughtful and consistent action by the area’s residents. Of these, no one did more than the remarkable Pearl Chase (1888 – 1979), who shaped the architectural development of the city and county through her wide-ranging influence and tireless advocacy.

Established in 1995, the Pearl Chase Society continues to advance and enlarge upon the founding vision of Pearl Chase.

The Society is a citizen-based conservancy that fills a crucial need today in preserving and enhancing the cultural and architectural heritage of Santa Barbara County.

The Society engages in charitable and educational activities to promote and preserve Santa Barbara’s historic sites of rare value and continuing community interest.

Members of the Pearl Chase Society are invited to attend general meetings of the Society, have opportunities to serve on committees of particular interest, receive newsletters and calendars, and participate in special tours and lectures. Members may also volunteer for a variety of activities.

Most important, membership in the Pearl Chase Society supports our crucial ongoing efforts to protect the irreplaceable historic resources of the Santa Barbara area.

Pearl Chase believed in the power of collaboration, and we are committed to fostering productive relationships with both public and private entities. The Society provides financial support and volunteer assistance in the preservation of historic gardens, structures, and other resources.

The Pearl Chase Society is a 501(c)(3) not-for-profit organization (Tax ID #77-0474251). Donations are tax-deductible to the extent allowed by law.

We take a leadership role in preservation issues that require direction and play a supporting role in issues that have their own champions.

Some of these issues and projects have included:

1997 – Successfully campaigned for incorporation of historic storefronts into Santa Barbara Museum of Art renovation

1998 – Involved with Val Verde Conditional Use Permit

1998-current – Organized City Street Photography Project

1999, 2000 – Led first Santa Barbara celebrations of National Preservation Weeks

1999-2003 – Led Initial “Save Franceschi House” Campaign

1999 – Campaigned for State remediation of toxic soil under the Santa Barbara Historical MuseumSanta

1999 – Successfully opposed Mission traffic roundabout at Alameda Padre Serra & East Los Olivos Streets

2000 – Collaborated with City of Santa Barbara in Waterfront Historic Resources Survey

2001-2003 – Successfully relocated iconic 1950s rooftop Santa Claus from Carpinteria to Oxnard

2001-2004 – Permanent member of Franceschi Park Master Plan Advisory Committee

2001-02, 2007-08 – Co-sponsored “Chamber Music in Historic Sites“

2003 – Hosted California Preservation Conference, “A Blueprint for Preservation“

2004 – Led Santa Barbara Preservation Days

2004 – Supported Lompoc Victorian Homes Tour

2009 – Funded entire restoration of the 1928 John Smeraldi ceiling in the Santa Barbara Courthouse Archway

2011 – Partially funded restoration of the “Spirit of the Ocean” fountain at Santa Barbara’s Courthouse

2011 – Funded cleaning and restoration of the 1934 Douglass Parshall mural in landmarked Santa Barbara Junior High School Library

2011 – Partially funded restoration of the historic Pico Adobe, landmarked by the City and listed on the National Register of Historic Places

2012 – Funded stonework repair of 13 foot hole in aqueduct wall at Mission Historical Park

2013 – Funded complete restoration of the La Casa de Maria fountain

2014 – Supported proper rehabilitation of the historic Juarez-Hosmer Adobe

2014 – Funded all Anapamu Street “Irricades” to maintain historic Doremus Stone Pines during drought

We are a volunteer, not-for-profit conservancy dedicated to preserving
Santa Barbara’s historic architecture...

We conduct annual public tours of our community’s historic homes and neighborhoods.

We support cataloging and identification of historic photographs and documents stored by the City of Santa Barbara.

We offer educational trips to historic sites in the City and County of Santa Barbara.

We sponsor public speakers, conferences, and lectures to promote preservation of our unique architecture, landscapes, and cultural heritage.

We provide volunteers for neighborhood-based historic resources surveys.

We are partners with the City of Santa Barbara and other community organizations on various projects and the designation of historic districts.

Join the Pearl Chase Society

The Pearl Chase Society’s an all volunteer, not-for-profit conservancy dedicated to preserving Santa Barbara’s historic architecture, landscapes and cultural heritage.


Board of Directors

President: Barbara Lowenthal (Pictured), Vise President: Steve Dowty, Secretary: Barbara Boyd, Treasurer: Sue Adams, Historian: Patti Ottoboni, Memberships : Maureen Masson


Marty Blum, Barbara Boyd, Bob Burtness, Steve Crozier, Erik Davis, Kellam de Forest, Tina Foss, Dale Francisco, Kitty Peri, Pat Mitchell.