Local News The Press

South Gate to relocate Seaborg House

SOUTH GATE — After about 10 years of planning and seeking funds, the city has decided to relocate the former house of Nobel-prize winning chemist Dr. Glenn. T. Seaborg from behind the South Gate Museum to a permanent site to the south on Dr. Glenn T. Seaborg Way, east of California Avenue along the south side of City Hall.

The street, named in honor of the late scientist, was determined to be the logical site for the 700-square-foot structure, in which Seaborg lived while growing up from 1922 to 1934.

It would be in back of the South Gate Museum, south of City Hall at 8650 California Ave., Parks and Recreation Director Paul G. Adams said.

Plans are to restore the exterior of the house and open it to the public as a museum. The interior would need to be upgraded to meet requirements of the Americans With Disabilities Act, he noted.

Adams said the Parks and Recreation Commission approved the Civic Center site Feb. 12 after rejecting an earlier proposal to place the house in South Gate Park.

Commissioners also noted the structure should have high visibility.

They also were concerned about safety and security of the old structure at the park site and wanted it near the museum, where it will share the parking lot. Also, the commissioners said the park site should be used for recreational purposes.

It would be located on what is now a parking lot.

Total funding is uncertain but $200,000 in federal community development block grant funds have been allocated.

The new location will be on city-owned land currently landscaped and occupied by a maintenance shed, Adams said.

Glenn Seaborg
Glenn Seaborg

Born in the northern Michigan mining town of Ispheming April 19, 1912, Seaborg and his family moved to the home on San Antonio Avenue in 1922. He died Feb. 25, 1999, five years after the City Council decided to retain the home as a landmark and moved it to the Civic Center site.

According to his biography, Seaborg graduated from Jordan High School and earned a degree in chemistry at UC Berkeley, where he later taught. He is credited with the discovery of Plutonium at the age of 28 in 1940 and during that era worked on the Manhattan Project to develop the atomic bomb.