Yes, this is U.S. 101 through Del Mar, Calif., in what looks to be the early 1940s.

In this Hopkins Agency postcard, courtesy of the University of San Diego, it’s an idyllic day at Stratford Square in Olde Del Mar. This is 15th Street and today’s Camino Del Mar and, yes, Stratford Square still stands. From 1926 to the early 1960s, this was U.S. 101 and the main highway from San Diego to Los Angeles.

It’s a lot of fun to visit today, as I reveal in the “Quintessential California” chapter of my Joyrides Around San Diego.

By the car and lack of traffic, I’d guess this was taken in late 1940 or 1941 at the earliest, also guessing that’s a 1941 Ford woody wagon. The Del Mar Hotel, now gone, is in the background.

The photo is courtesy the University of San Diego’s San Diego College for Women Postcard Collection. The university describes it as “a legacy from the Society of the Sacred Heart, established and administered the San Diego College for Women through early 1970s. The postcard collection contains several smaller collections that were donated over the years to the San Diego College for Women Library.”

Thanks to the university for preserving this and other collections.

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