25 questions and answers surrounding Livermore’s rich history
Q1: The first American winery to win the Grand Prix award at the Paris Exposition was a Livermore Valley Winery. What was the name of that winery and what year did they win?
A: The Cresta Blanca Winery in 1889
Q2: In what year was the city of Livermore founded?
A: 1869. It was incorporated on April 1st, 1876.
Q3: Who was the person who chose to name the city after Robert Livermore?
A: William Mendenhall
Q4: One of the earliest U.S. transcontinental highway routes began in Lincoln Park in San Francisco, ran through Livermore, and ended in Times Square in New York. What is the name of this highway?
A: Lincoln Highway
Q5: What color were the ready-mix concrete trucks that were driven for several generations by employees of the Kaiser Sand & Gravel Quarry on Stanley Boulevard?
A: Pink. It was the favorite color of Henry Kaiser’s wife.
Q6: What is the full name of the legendary bandito, after whom a local winery is named, and has been referred to as the Robinhood of the West, or the Robinhood of the El Dorado?
A: Joaquin Murrieta or Joaquin Murrieta Carrillo (both are acceptable answers)
Q7: What kind of mines were on Mines Road?
A: Magnesite or magnesium carbonate
Q8: In what year was the first Livermore Rodeo Parade?
A: 1918. The Cresta Blanca Winery handed out splits of wine!
Q9: The Livermore Lab was named after the recipient of the 1939 Nobel Prize in physics. What was his first and last name?
A: Ernest Lawrence
Q10: Charles Wetmore was the owner of the Cresta Blanca Vineyard. He was part of the first graduating class of what college?
A: The new College of California, later to become the University of California, Berkeley. (either answer is acceptable)
Q11: What is the name of the Livermore resident who won the world’s heavyweight boxing championship in 1934?
A: Max Baer
Q12: What two major leaguers who attended high school in Livermore were Cy Young award winners in 1989 and 1995?
A: 1989-Mark Davis and 1995-Randy Johnson (he was also the second tallest player to ever play in the MLB!)
Q13: Who is the current Vice Mayor of the city of Livermore (in 2020)?
A: Robert Carling
Q14: Livermorium is a synthetic chemical element, with the symbol Lv, that was named after the Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory. What is its atomic number?
Q15: Concannon and Wente wineries were the only two Livermore Valley wineries to make it through prohibition. They both were selling sacramental wine to the Catholic Church to make it through, but Wente was engaging in another kind of business, as well. What was it?
A: The Wentes went into the dairy business, cattle ranching, and planted lots of hay and grain. I have also heard rumors of possible bootlegging.
Q16: How old is the Centennial Bulb burning at the firehouse on East Avenue (as of Mid-2020)?
Q17: What park in Livermore is named after the wife of Danish immigrant and co-founder of Livermore’s Dania Hall (also Laina’s great-great grandmother)?
A: Ida Holm Park or Holmwell Park
Q18: What Native American tribes inhabited the Livermore Valley before Spanish conquistadors arrived in the late 1800s?
A: The Ohlone and Costanoan
Q19: The Tri-Valley city we now know as Pleasanton was nicknamed the “most desperate town in the West” due to its wild history consisting of shootouts, brothels, and debauchery. What was the city of Pleasanton’s name when it was first established in the 1850’s?
Q20: Wines from the Cresta Blanca Winery appeared on the menu of a dinner hosted in San Francisco by which U.S. president?
A: Theodore Roosevelt
Q21: What is the number of the Livermore-Pleasanton Fire station the Centennial Bulb can currently be found at?
A: Station 6
Q22: The Independent newspaper’s current address is at the corner of Livermore Avenue and 1st Street. What is the name of the building they can be found in?
A: The Bank of Italy
Q23: When Adam “Fortunate Eagle” Norwall, of the Ojibwa Nation, gifted the city the totem pole that currently stands in Centennial Park, the city workers who were assigned to install the totem pole cut several feet off the bottom. Norwall was upset by the desecration of the sacred object and proceeded to put a curse on which of the city’s systems?
A: The sewage system
Q24: What notorious Bay Area group was asked to act as security for the Altamont Speedway Free Festival in 1969?
A: Hell’s Angels
Q25: Livermore made national news in 1976 when what was found buried in a quarry?
A: A box truck with a kidnapped bus driver and 26 school children from Chowchilla (this made national headlines and is known as the Chowchilla Kidnapping)