In 1942 Redlands placed observers along Sunset Drive watching for enemy planes. This felt-material U.S. Army Air Force Observer armband worn by those civilian watchmen was donated by Chet and Sherril of Mendocino and was among several Redlands items that belonged to Louis Rabenstein including his top hat worn at the Redlands Golden Jubilee in 1938. The family lived at the “Rock House” at 701 11th St., built by Rabenstein in 1928.
Especially in late February 1942, Redlands was worried about a Japanese attack on the mainland. A submarine off the coast of Santa Barbara had shelled Goleta Feb. 23 — some 15 shells in 25 minutes, according to one diary report. No damage was reported.
For information on donating Redlands-area-related historical items, contact the A.K. Smiley Public Library Heritage Room at (909) 798-7632. The Museum of Redlands is in a Capital Campaign drive for renovating its building at 700 Brookside Ave. Information: www.theMOR.org.