Member of:

•  National Trust for Historic
•  Conference of California
    Historical Societies
•  American Association for
   State & Local History

Home   l   About   l   Contact

Costa Mesa, California

Public Events

Scarecrow Contest
Society News
Photo Gallery
Costa Mesa Timeline
Diego Sepulveda Adobe
Museum & Headquarters
Santa Ana Army Air Base
Collections & Resources
Gift Shop



Fence under construction

CMHS Facebook Link


the Holland 1909 Buick racer will be making an appearance this Sunday as well!

Dennis Holland: Ship
Builder, Man of History

The Costa Mesa Historical Society is pleased to announce that Dennis Holland Jr. and Eric Longabardi  will present a special program on the life of Dennis L. Holland: the Man, his Ships and a Legacy of History on Sunday March 15, 2015. Dennis Holland Jr. is the only son of the late longtime Newport-Mesa resident Dennis Sr. He is also a boat builder and classic car restorer. He openly proclaims he learned nearly all of what he knows about wooden boats, cars and the value and respect of preserving living history from his father. Eric Longabardi is a longtime national award-winning TV producer and investigative journalist who also hails from the Costa Mesa/Newport area. Longabardi was a close friend of the senior Holland. He first met Holland when he was a young child growing up only a few blocks away in Costa Mesa along the Upper Back Bay when the 'Pilgrim of Newport' was under construction. “He wasn’t so much a dreamer, but a man who did what it took to fulfill his life’s dream” Longabardi says of Holland.

The program will feature the life and times of master shipwright and local resident Dennis L. Holland. Holland's iconic life was centered around building, restoring, and preserving boats, autos and other pieces of history. The centerpiece of that story is the 118-ft tall ship "The Pilgrim of Newport", a replica of a wooden sailing ship first built during the U.S. Revolutionary War. Holland built the ship in the front yard of his home in Costa Mesa beginning in 1970. Thirteen years later, in 1983, it was launched in Newport Harbor and continues to sail today. Holland was also an avid restorer of classic antique cars and a strong advocate for preserving all things historic. Holland passed away last year after a long battle with cancer. At the time he was still working to restore another ship, “The Shawnee”, a famed boat over a hundred years old.

Holland and Longabardi are in the initial stages of organizing a non-profit foundation that will seek to carry on the legacy of Dennis L. Holland via educational programs for children and adults. Once fully restored “The Shawnee” would be the centerpiece of that effort.

 So come bring a friend and sail away with us! 

Seating is limited, for RESERVATIONS call (949) 631-5918.    Doors open at 2:00, program at 2:30. Free admission with free reception following at Museum at 1870 Anaheim Ave. northwest of the NCC and Library. Visit   or go to facebook/costa mesa historical society for more information.

Program will take place at the Neighborhood Community Center (NCC) at 1845 Park Ave.

>Click here for the Flier!<


Come enjoy the Denwar Exhibit and also check out our gift shop for Denwar and other Costa Mesa related items!

Give the gift of history and help support the CMHS at the same time!

Lots of books and memorabilia to select from including commemorative plates, paperweights and SAAAB items, note paper, postcards and out of print items.

And we have many historic photos to choose from for your home, office or gift!



"Costa Mesa My Sweet Home" video


Order form for the book Early Costa Mesa: more info

The Costa Mesa Historical Society welcomes you to its online home.  The Society is an all-volunteer, non-profit group whose mission is to collect, preserve and promote the history of the Costa Mesa area.

We encourage anyone interested in Costa Mesa history to explore our website.  Also, we extend an open invitation to interested individuals, families, students, professionals, businesses and organizations to become members of the Society.

This website contains but a tiny sampling of the many resources available to you.  Please contact us should you need more information.



Copyright © 2002-2015 Costa Mesa Historical Society