“Davisville 1905 – The Year the Town Woke Up” is the title of an exhibit by John Lofland, Professor Emeritus Sociology, and Jim Becket, of the Davis Historical Society, currently mounted in the Special Collections exhibit cases on the first floor of Shields Library.
The exhibit consists of images of both scenes and documents from that time period, with the focus on the town’s effort to secure the University Farm site for Davisville. Many of the original documents may be found in Special Collections. Reproductions of columns from the Davisville Enterprise contribute to the display, as Editor William Scott was one of the town’s primary boosters. Excerpts from George W. Pierce Jr.’s daily journal and the “Ideal Spot for a University Farm” booklet, are also featured.
In 1905, a committee of seven was appointed by the newly formed Davisville Chamber of Commerce to promote Davisville as the best location for the University Farm. They succeeded where similar committees in nearly seventy communities elsewhere in California failed. Many local citizens subscribed funds for purchase of an option on the 779-acre Sparks-Hamel-Wright tract that was offered to the site selection committee. When their offer was accepted on April 6, 1906, Davisites celebrated with flag flying and fireworks.