National Register of Historic Places in Monterey County

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National Register #94001498
Pacific Biological Laboratories
AKA Doc's Lab
800 Cannery Row
Monterey
Built 1937

The Pacific Biological Laboratories is a small, unpaimed, two story woodframe building toward the northwest end of Cannery Row in Monterey, From the date of its construction in 1937, to the death of the biological specimen supply company's owner, Edward F. Ricketts in 1948, "Doc's Lab" was a gathering place for bohemians. artists, writers and thinkers who would make major contributions to American science and letters as an outgrowth of their association through the lab. I

Ed Ricketts met John Steinbeck at a party in Jack Calvin's house in Carmel in 1930. They took an immediate liking to each other. As author Brian St. Pierre noted in his fihn Steinbeck the California /Four of Steinbeck's books are dedicated to Ricketts, and he serves in varying degrees as the source of Steinbeck's personae in sii novels and novelettes.

CANNERY ROW AND W DGC'S LABH John Steinbeck vas in Neu- York in 1944 vfcen he vrote GinneryRo*\ a thinly veiled account of the characters and incidents he had encountered along Monterey's Ocean View Avenue, and at the Pacific Biological Laboratories, which he later described "as strange an operation as ever outraged the corporate laws of California. Because of Steinbeck's writing skills, honed through his long and close association ^<"ith Ed Ricketts, "Doc" and the Pacific Biological Laboratories gained worldwide fame. £d Ricketts 'Doc s Lab" became the epicenter of Cannery Row. According to their mutual friend Joel Hedgpeth, Cannery£ow changed Ricketts' life, "The collector of considerable experience had become himself a literary specimen to be sought out and collected socially."

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