Guide to the San Diego Convention and Visitors Bureau Collection

© Copyright 2008 Special Collections & University Archives. All rights reserved.
2008-01-04
5500 Campanile Dr. MC 8050
San Diego, CA, 92182-8050
URL: http://library.sdsu.edu/scua
Email: scref@rohan.sdsu.edu
Phone: 619-594-6791

Guide to the San Diego Convention and Visitors Bureau Collection 1951/1976

Special Collections & University Archives

Overview of the Collection

Collection Title: San Diego Convention and Visitors Bureau Collection
Dates: 1951-1976
Bulk Dates: 1965-1975
Identification: MS-0204
Creator: San Diego Convention and Visitors Bureau
Physical Description: 6.25 linear ft
Language of Materials: English
Repository: Special Collections & University Archives
5500 Campanile Dr. MC 8050
San Diego, CA, 92182-8050
URL: http://library.sdsu.edu/scua
Email: scref@rohan.sdsu.edu
Phone: 619-594-6791

Historical Note:

The San Diego Convention and Visitors Bureau has evolved from three predecessor organizations, the oldest of which dates to 1919. In 1919, the San Diego-California Club, brainchild of San Diego realtor O.W. Cotton, was organized for the express purpose of persuading people in the prosperous Midwest to live in San Diego. This was because San Diego's growth had come to a halt, construction was at a standstill, and there were empty houses all over the city.
Though Cotton's plan was to attract permanent residents to San Diego, its natural side effect was to attract visitors and tourists, as well. The first year's budget for the San Diego-California Club was $150,000, raised entirely from the business community. Cotton recalls in his memoirs, The Good Old Days, that business men were desperate for a way out of the area's depression, and the "club" was the only solution that had been offered to them. Nevertheless, it was a great deal of money to be raised in such a small community with a population of only 85,000.
During the first month of operation, thirteen stenographers were kept busy typing letters promoting San Diego. Letters of inquiry in response to that promotion mounted as high as 900 a day before the first year was ended. The advertising stressed the city's climate, as Bureau advertising does today. By 1931, the club was distributing 500,000 pieces of literature a year. Headquarters were on the Spreckels Building's first floor.
The Club's operating fund dropped to $125,000 in its second year, and dropped again to $75,000 in its third year. In 1925, the San Diego Chamber of Commerce took the club under its wing, though the club retained its own officers and budget separate from the Chamber. That same year, on November 25, the club's convention hall in Balboa Park burned to the ground during the Fireman's Ball.
In 1928, the San Diego Convention Bureau was organized by the Convention Department of the San Diego Chamber of Commerce. Its purpose was to function as an independent organization to put San Diego in a position to compete for convention business with other communities.
In 1936, Joseph Dryer formed the San Diego Heaven-on-Earth Club. It never had a formal advertising budget, though Dryer poured much personal time and money into it. Later this club was absorbed into the San Diego-California Club. In 1946, the San Diego-California Club, still operating under the auspices of the Chamber of Commerce, changed its name to the San Diego Visitors Bureau. During 1948 and 1949, both the Visitors Bureau and the Convention Bureau received funds from the County of San Diego, so each changed its name to the San Diego City and San Diego County Visitors and Convention Bureaus.
In the early 1950s the visitor industry began to show strong potential again, and the idea was put forth that all visitor industry promotional groups would be joined together in one organization. In 1954, the San Diego City and County Visitors and Convention Bureaus were consolidated into one organization called the San Diego Convention and Tourist Bureaus. Its first president was Kenneth Nairne, manager of the main office of the Bank of America.
In June of 1965, membership of community business and professional organizations in the Bureau went over 700 for the first time in its history. By the end of 1966 it stood at 1,051.
The Bureau underwent another small change in1965, when it changed its name to the Convention and Visitors Bureau. San Diego was the first city to sustain a visitor promotion unit, and it still is considered by most bureau managers across the nation to be the best organized in the nation.

Access Terms

This collection is indexed under the following controlled access subject terms.

Genre/Form of Material:

Organizational Records
Photographs
Publications

Topical Term:

City promotion -- California -- San Diego -- History -- 20th century -- Sources
San Diego (Calif.) -- Social life and customs -- Sources
San Diego Convention and Visitors Bureau -- Archives
San Diego Convention and Visitors Bureau -- History -- 20th century -- Sources
Tourist information centers -- California -- San Diego -- History -- 20th century -- Sources

Administrative Information

Conditions Governing Use:

The copyright interests in some of these materials have been transferred to or belong to San Diego State University. The nature of historical archival and manuscript collections means that copyright status may be difficult or even impossible to determine. Copyright resides with the creators of materials contained in the collection or their heirs. Requests for permission to publish must be submitted to the Head of Special Collections, San Diego State University, Library and Information Access. Permissions is given on behalf of Special Collections as the owner of the physical item and is not intended to include or imply permission of the copyright holder(s), which must also be obtained in order to publish.  Materials from our collections are made available for use in research, teaching, and private study. The user must assume full responsibility for any use of the materials, including but not limited to, infringement of copyright and publication rights of reproduced materials.

Conditions Governing Access:

This collection is open for research.

Preferred Citation:

Identification of item, folder title, box number, San Diego Convention and Visitors Bureau Collection, Special Collections and University Archives, Library and Information Access, San Diego State University.

Scope and Contents

The collection includes reports, studies, financial records, research files, purchase orders, correspondence, public relations materials, media campaigns, conferences, speeches, brochures, promotional publications, photographs, and transparencies.

Detailed List of Contents

Box 1, Folder 1

Box 1, Folder 1

Hotel-Motel Facilities Census: surveys and reports on the geographic distribution of local hotels and motels 1965-1971

Box 1, Folder 1

Surveys by class of available accomodations

Box 1, Folder 2

Box 1, Folder 2

Hotel-Motel Construction Reports: new units planned, under construction or completed in San Diego county and Baja 1968-1974

Box 1, Folder 2

News clippings regarding same

Box 1, Folder 3

Box 1, Folder 3

Hotel-Motel Occupancy Rates for Class "A" Facilities: individual reports 1970-1973

Box 1, Folder 3

Summary report 1970-1973

Box 1, Folder 4

Box 1, Folder 4

Visitor Industry Statistical History Report: a collection of reports demonstrating the impact of tourism of San Diego

Box 1, Folder 4

Visitor Spending 1929-1974

Box 1, Folder 4

Transient Occupancy Tax Revenue 1965-1973

Box 1, Folder 4

Daily Spending 1960-1974

Box 1, Folder 4

Conventions/Convention Attendance/Convention Spending 1948-1974

Box 1, Folder 4

Tourist Industry Employment and Payroll 1968-1973

Box 1, Folder 4

Average Population of San Diego 1960-1974

Box 1, Folder 5

San Diego County Estimated Tourist Expenditures 1971

Box 1, Folder 6

Number of Meeting Rooms in San Diego, including the Community Concourse and all major facilities in San Diego county as of September 12, 1972

Box 1, Folder 7

Annual Reports on CONVIS: "state-of-tourism" in San Diego 1957-1970

Scope and Contents

Folder is missing (September 26, 2005)
Box 1, Folder 8

Kaplan Research Report on the Origins of Visitors to San Diego 1960

Box 1, Folder 9

Copley International Corporation Outline of Research Programs: proposed future studies for CONVIS November 1970

Box 1, Folder 10

Copley International Corporation Report on "The Effect of Tourism on Population Growth" January 10, 1972

Box 1, Folder 11

Box 1, Folder 11

Bureau Officers Lists 1954-1973

Box 1, Folder 11

Bureau Board of Directors and Executive Committee Lists 1964-1970

Box 1, Folder 12

Executive Committee Meeting Report April 5, 1973

Box 1, Folder 13

Box 1, Folder 13

Convention Potential Reports: comparing 41 cities with regards to funding base

Box 1, Folder 13

San Diego facilities - number of conventions 1965-1971

Box 1, Folder 14

Box 1, Folder 14

Ernst and Ernst Study on the Formation of a Unified Public Relations Agency: local response 1968

Box 1, Folder 14

news clippings

Box 1, Folder 15

Box 1, Folder 15

Employment Development Department Report on Tourism as an Industry in California: county breakdowns

Box 1, Folder 15

Statistical surveys

Box 1, Folder 16

Commission for Economic Development Report on California

Box 1, Folder 17

Synopses of Bureau Departments and their Functions

Box 1, Folder 18

Reports on the History of CONVIS Activity 1920, 1955, 1955-1956, 1956, 1959, 1960, 1961, 1962-1965, 1967, 1973

Box 1, Folder 19

Annual Business Survey Brochures 1955-1959, 1962-1964, 1969, 1972-1973

Box 1, Folder 20

Reports to the Board of Directors September 1972 - May 1974

Box 1, Folder 21

Room Tax Funding: purposes; report on; questioned by local groups

Box 1, Folder 22

Room Tax Clippings 1964-1973

Box 1, Folder 23

Press Conference on Room Tax Allocations May 14, 1970

Box 1, Folder 24

State Tourism Office Correspondence

Box 1, Folder 25

State of the City Message 1975

Box 1, Folder 26

General Correspondence and Publications Regarding the Society of American Travel Writers 1970-1974

Box 1, Folder 27

Box 1, Folder 27

Speech: How Convention and Tourist Business Benefits San Diego

Box 1, Folder 27

Speech: State of the Visitor Industry August 1962

Box 1, Folder 27

Speech: Future of San Diego October 7, 1963

Box 1, Folder 28

Border Cities Conference 1972, 1973

Box 1, Folder 29

Guides to CONVIS Publications: list of Bureau compiled pubs; additions and format revamps; budgets for

Box 1, Folder 30

ITT Shareholders Meeting held in San Diego May 1971

Box 1, Folder 31

Grand Old Party (GOP) Convention Planning: fact sheets, memos, service estimates, publications, correspondence May 1971 - May 1972

Box 1, Folder 32

Hotel-Motel Contract Forms for 1972 GOP Convention

Box 1, Folder 33

Hotel Lists for 1972 GOP Convention

Box 1, Folder 34

News Clippings regarding 1972 GOP Convention

Box 1, Folder 35

Bureau Gratuities List and Inventory: budget allocations 1971-1974

Box 1, Folder 36

Bureau Statement of Purpose Revision: example By-Laws of Phoenix Convention Bureau

Box 1, Folder 37

Purchase Orders 1973

Box 1, Folder 38

Purchase Orders 1974

Box 1, Folder 39

Purchase Orders 1975

Box 1, Folder 40

Purchase Orders 1976

Box 1, Folder 41

Box 1, Folder 41

Bylaws July 1, 1968; April 12, 1971; July 1, 1976; March 23, 1977

Box 1, Folder 41

Organizational Chart and Staff List August 1977

Box 2, Folder 1

Statement of Purpose and Plans for Bureau Public Relations department

Box 2, Folder 2

Speech File on tourism, conventions, promotions, and dollars 1966-1973

Box 2, Folder 3

Discover America Travel Organization (DATO) Correspondence: on conventions, plans, pow-wows, national coordination between local tourist agencies, promotional ideas for national campaigns, press releases on campaigns, and membership lists 1971-1974

Box 2, Folder 4

DATO Conference in San Diego: photos of conferees, press kit, medie announcements, minutes of conference September 1970

Box 2, Folder 5

DATO Conference in San Diego: program schedule, correspondence September 1970

Box 2, Folder 6

DATO Conference Houstin: press releases, correspondence, program, brochures October 21, 1972 - October 25, 1972

Box 2, Folder 7

DATO San Diego Pow Wow: speeches, various photos, planning reports, schedules, correspondence 1972

Box 2, Folder 8

DATO San Diego Pop Wow: press clippings, business cards, delegate registers, brochures 1972

Box 2, Folder 9

DATO Travel Promotion Award to CONVIS November 6, 1972

Box 2, Folder 10

DATO Conference at Lake Placid, New York September 9, 1973 - October 2, 1973

Box 2, Folder 11

DATO Hawaii Conference: advance correspondence, conference reports on tourism, speeches, preliminary program, tour development seminars, energy crisis impact on tourism May 8, 1974 - May 12, 1974

Box 2, Folder 12

DATO - Press and Public Relations Committee Meeting in Puerto Rico: correspondence November 30, 1974

Box 2, Folder 13

Public Relations Program with United Airlines

Box 2, Folder 14

Public Relations Program with American Airlines

Box 2, Folder 15

Promotion Programs with Mexico and Western Airlines

Box 2, Folder 16

Media Public Relations Announcements: letters from CONVIS to newspapers, a Sunday supplement, radio spots January 1973, September 1979

Box 2, Folder 17

Public Relations Photographs of Ad Billboards circa 1962

Box 2, Folder 18

Bureau Sales Blitz Campaign in Mexico City February 1972

Box 2, Folder 19

Bureau Sales Blitz Campaign for Seattle, Tacoma, Portland 1972

Box 2, Folder 20

Promotional Trip to Japan: business cards, report, correspondence 1973-1974

Box 2, Folder 21

Press Clipping Service: account statements, accounts payable for PR work, correspondence 1973-1974

Box 2, Folder 22

Japanese Student Seminar at San Diego State University 1974

Box 2, Folder 23

Lobbying to Retain Mexican Tourist Office in San Diego 1973

Box 2, Folder 24

San Diego County Public Relations Display in Sacramento

Box 2, Folder 25

Correspondence with Phillips-Ramsey Advertising Agency regarding handling of promo campaigns

Box 2, Folder 26

Report on Effectiveness of Ad Campaigns January - April 1974

Box 2, Folder 27

Selection of Ad Agency: review questionnaire, Bureau ad committee minutes, correspondence

Box 2, Folder 28

Box 2, Folder 28

Advertising Proof Schedules 1968-1969

Box 2, Folder 28

Ad Poster 1973-1974

Box 2, Folder 29

Promotional Stories, Posters, and Media Ad Schedules 1972-1973

Box 2, Folder 30

Fishing Guide to San Diego County March 1969

Box 2, Folder 31

"HOST" Program: contract between city and CONVIS to attract visitors/conventions, Public Relations phhotos, special airport welcoming system

Box 2, Folder 32

"Sea World News" Releases 1976

Box 2, Folder 33

"What's Doing" and "Golfland" Brochure Series early 1970s

Box 2, Folder 34

"Hotels-Motels" Brochure Series along with various others: travel writer's list for Public Relations kits late 1960s to early 1970s

Box 2, Folder 35

Miscellaneous Brochures Mostly pre-1968

Box 2, Folder 36

An Amazing Collection of Propaganda Essays on the Wonders of San Diego

Box 2, Folder 37

Miscellaneous Materials

Box 2, Folder 37

CONVIS library index

Box 2, Folder 37

List of Photo negatives

Box 2, Folder 37

Points of Interest list

Box 2, Folder 37

undated membership assessment list

Box 2, Folder 37

oral background for CONVIS slide presentation

Box 2, Folder 37

undated speech on promoting tourism

Box 2, Folder 37

article excerpt from Swank magazine

Box 2, Folder 37

First Congress on Mexican Tourism and followup correspondence March 1971

Box 2

One (1) Envelope of Slide Negatives and Ad Transparencies

Box 3, Folder 1

News Releases "What's Doing In San Diego" Weekly Calendars January 1, 1972 - March 31, 1972

Box 3, Folder 2

News Releases "What's Doing In San Diego" Weekly Calendars April 1, 1972 - June 30, 1972

Box 3, Folder 3

News Releases "What's Doing In San Diego" Weekly Calendars July 1, 1972 - September 30, 1972

Box 3, Folder 4

News Releases "What's Doing In San Diego" Weekly Calendars October 1, 1972 - December 31, 1972

Box 3, Folder 5

News Releases "What's Doing In San Diego" Weekly Calendars January 1, 1973 - March 31, 1973

Box 3, Folder 6

News Releases "What's Doing In San Diego" Weekly Calendars April 1, 1973 - June 30, 1974

Box 3, Folder 7

News Releases "What's Doing In San Diego" Weekly Calendars July 1, 1973 - September 30, 1973

Box 3, Folder 8

News Releases "What's Doing In San Diego" Weekly Calendars January 1, 1974 - June 30, 1974

Box 3, Folder 9

News Releases "What's Doing In San Diego" Weekly Calendars July 1, 1974 - September 30, 1974

Box 3, Folder 10

News Releases "What's Doing In San Diego" Weekly Calendars October 1, 1975 - January 5, 1975

Box 3, Folder 11

Special News Announcements 1970, 1973, 1974

Box 3, Folder 12

Public News Reports 1975

Box 3, Folder 13

"Hot Sheets" - Intraoffice Communicatiion March 1, 1974 - June 30, 1974

Box 3, Folder 14

"Hot Sheets" - Intraoffice Communication July 1, 1974 - December 31, 1974

Box 3, Folder 15

General Correspondence (both Incoming and Outgoing) 1968

Box 3, Folder 16

General Correspondence (both Incoming and Outgoing) 1969

Box 3, Folder 17

General Correspondence (both Incoming and Outgoing) 1970

Box 3, Folder 18

General Correspondence (both Incoming and Outgoing) 1971

Box 3, Folder 19

General Correspondence (both Incoming and Outgoing) 1972

Box 3, Folder 20

General Correspondence (both Incoming and Outgoing) January 1, 1973 - March 31, 1973

Box 3, Folder 21

General Correspondence (both Incoming and Outgoing) April 1, 1973 - June 30, 1973

Box 3, Folder 22

General Correspondence (both Incoming and Outgoing) July 1, 1973 - September 30, 1973

Box 3, Folder 23

General Correspondence (both Incoming and Outgoing) October 1, 1973 - December 31, 1973

Box 3, Folder 24

General Correspondence (both Incoming and Outgoing) January 1, 1974 - March 31, 1974

Box 3, Folder 25

General Correspondence (both Incoming and Outgoing) April 1, 1974 - June 30, 1974

Box 3, Folder 26

General Correspondence (both Incoming and Outgoing) July 1, 1974 - September 30, 1974

Box 3, Folder 27

General Correspondence (both Incoming and Outgoing) October 1, 1974 - December 31, 1974

Box 3, Folder 28

Outgoing Correspondence January 1976

Box 3, Folder 29

Outgoing Correspondence February 1976

Box 3, Folder 30

Outgoing Correspondence March 1976

Box 3, Folder 31

Outgoing Correspondence April 1976

Box 3, Folder 32

Outgoing Correspondence May 1976

Box 3, Folder 33

Outgoing Correspondence June 1976

Box 3, Folder 34

1974 Weekly Appointments Book

Box 4, Folder 1

Miscellaneous Ad-Public Relations-Display Photographs (mounted and undated)

Box 4, Folder 2

Miscellaneous Ad-Public Relations-Display Photographs (mounted and undated)

Box 4, Folder 3

Miscellaneous Ad-Public Relations-Display Photographs (mounted and undated)

Box 4, Folder 4

Miscellaneous Ad-Public Relations-Display Photographs (mounted and undated)

Box 4, Folder 5

Miscellaneous Ad-Public Relations-Display Photographs (mounted and undated)

Box 4, Folder 6

Miscellaneous Ad-Public Relations-Display Photographs (mounted and undated)

Box 4, Folder 7

Miscellaneous Ad-Public Relations-Display Photographs (mounted and undated)

Scope and Contents

Miscellaneous photographs, circa 1972, General Description, Scenic
Box 4

5 Envelopes containing Ad Campaign Cartoons

Box 4

5 Envelopes of Overlays and Transparencies for Ad Campaign Cartoons

Box 5, Folder 1

Microfilmed Materials

Box 5, Folder 1

L-HR-6: Minutes of the Executive committee Meetings March 16, 1951 - June 25, 1965

Box 5, Folder 1

L-HR-7

Scope and Contents

Minutes of the Executive Committee Meetings; Minutes of the Board of Directors Meetings; Copies of the By-Laws and Treasurer's Reports (July 1965 - June 1973). HOST Committee; Membership Committee; Special Committee; Minutes from 1968-1974. Minutes of the Advertising, Budgetary, and Convention Committees from 1968-1974.
Box 5, Folder 1

L-HR-8: Copley International Corporation Report on Hotel Visitors to San Diego, 2 Volumes (Additional Copley International materials can be found in Box 1, Folders 9 & 10) 1971-1974

Box 5

3 Films entitled "Visitors - Who Needs 'Em?" (Shorts)

Box 5

1 Film entitled "Visitors - Who Needs 'Em?" (10 minute training film)

Box 5

1 Film Reel: bureau TV Spots of 10-20 seconds in length

Box 5

1 Film: Harold Keen Interview with Margita White of the United States Information Agency

Box 5

2 Tapes: on Marketing, Selling, Packaging and Servicing Tourists and Tourism

Box 5

1 Transparency on San Diego