Signal owner donates photo archives to SCV Historical Society

Supervisor Kathryn Barger, left. makes a presentation to The Signal Publisher Richard Budman at the VIA Luncheon to celebrate the 100th anniversary of the Signal Newspaper held at the Hyatt Regency Valencia on Tuesday. Dan Watson/The Signal

Scores of boxes filled with historic photos of Santa Clarita Valley history are now in the hands of the nonprofit SCV Historical Society for the community thanks to The Signal’s owner Richard Budman.

On Friday, the owner/publisher of the newspaper donated an estimated 1 million prints, negatives and digital images that date back to at least the 1960s.

“On behalf of The Signal newspaper, I am very happy to donate our photo and negative archives to the Santa Clarita Valley Historical Society,” said Budman in a statement. “The Signal has chronicled the rich history of the SCV for the past 100 years and with this donation, these images will be made available to the citizens of the SCV for all to see and enjoy.”

The photo archives are meant to be accessible for the “education and enjoyment of the Santa Clarita Valley community and its public, nonprofit, educational and governmental institutions,” Budman indicated in the donation letter.

“Richard donated them to the community and the Historical Society is the steward,” said Leon Worden, vice president of the Historical Society and president of SCVTV, which recently produced a video documentary on The Signal’s 100th anniversary.

“Richard and I identified that there were over 100 standard-size file boxes put together over the years, and it’s really an amazing thing to me that they still exist,” Worden added. “For those who have been around and for new people that move into our community, they will be able to learn about the community.”

Santa Clarita Councilwoman Laurene Weste, who has been instrumental in preserving SCV history, said the transfer was a great move.

“There’s 50 to 60 years’ worth of photographs that nobody has seen, and Richard’s efforts ensure that this will be there for future generations, and you’ll be able to see memories of the community and know that it won’t be lost as most history is lost.”

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