Here's a panoramic view from Grant Park in Ventura taken in January 1956. Shortly after Father Junipero Serra founded Mission San Buenaventura, a large wooden cross was placed on top of the hill overlooking the Mission church.
The original cross, damaged over time by the elements, was replaced in the 1860s. That cross blew down in a storm on November 5, 1875 and was not replaced for 40 years.
A new wooden cross was placed by a local women's service club on September 9, 1912. In 1918, Kenneth and Tonie Grant donated the surrounding hillside to the City of San Buenaventura. Roads to the cross were built around 1920. The circular stone pedestal and concrete pathway the cross now sits atop was built in March 1932. The cross that sits there today, a bit charred from the Thomas Fire, was replaced by the city in 1941.
The Serra Cross Conservancy is seeking donations at www.gofundme.com/serracrosshelp to help restore the cross and surrounding property.