Ellen Browning Scripps: The Zoo’s First Benefactor

Despite the continued skepticism from San Diego community leaders and conflict with city officials that Dr. Harry was facing, a prominent local citizen, Ellen Browning Scripps, believed in him and what he wanted to achieve. In 1921, she donated $9,000 for a fence to mark the designated boundaries of the Zoo. That made it possible to charge 10 cents admission when it was completed in January 1923, a much-needed source of revenue that could be used for building projects, acquiring animals, and to keep the Zoo running in those early days.


Beginnings 1916 - 1926
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