We've been scanning old family slides recently and I came across this one. It's an aerial shot of San Diego Stadium when Mission Valley was home to Mission Basilica San Diego de Alcala, the stadium and not much else.
In those days, Admiral Baker had recently conquered Mission Valley's native tribe ending a three day skirmish, by sailing the Star of India up the San Diego River to reenforce his cavalry that had come under attack. The Franciscan Friars from the nearby mission acted as intermediaries and formed a peace accord between the two warring factions that resulted in the building of Admiral Baker Golf Course that can be seen in the upper right hand corner.
To the North, gold had yet to be found in the steep cliffs that are now known as Tierra Santa and the area was still an active lizard and jack rabbit preserve.
No one knew that the empty plateau sitting kitty corner from the stadium would become a hedonistic dwelling named El Mirage Luxury Apartments. A place where Charger Girls would jog and older men who would sit in one of its hundred jacuzzis alone for extended periods of time waiting for young women to remove their bikini tops or for their already wrinkly skin to prune... whichever came first.
Most importantly, Father Junipero Serra, tired from building a string of missions in California, had taken up America's pastime and formed the San Diego Padres Baseball Club with his Friar brethren, one of which was the recently ordained Father Ted Williams. On this particular day in July, Jack Murphy Stadium sits empty with the Padres playing an away game in Philidelphia against the Athletics.
Here's a google map of what the area surrounding Qualcomm Stadium looks like now. Today the valley floor is covered in condos, homeless camps and malls. What year was the original picture taken?