The rightful owners of Bruce's Beach finally get the official deed 98 years later

The deed to Bruce's Beach is returned to the Bruce family Wednesday.

(CNN)In a celebratory and historic ceremony, Bruce's Beach, an oceanfront property was formally returned to the descendants of a Black couple in Southern California on Wednesday, nearly a century after being wrongfully stripped of the land.

The great-great grandson of the original land owners, Willa and Charles Bruce, was presented by the LA County Registrar-Recorder with an official deed marking the transfer of land.
Anthony Bruce smiled and held the document above his head as the crowd cheered and oceans waves crashed in the background.
      The event is the final step in transferring Bruce's Beach from Los Angeles County back into the hands of the family heirs.
        "This transfer will allow the Bruce family to realize generational wealth, which they have been denied for generations simply because they were black in America," said State Sen. Steven Bradford, author of the state bill that allowed the Bruce heirs to receive the property.
          Last month, the Los Angeles County Board of Supervisors voted unanimously to give the land back to the family.
          Known as Bruce's Beach, the resort had offered Black families a place to enjoy the California life and was a labor of love for the couple. They purchased the land in 1912 for $1,225 and built several facilities, including a cafe and changing rooms.
          But harassment from White neighbors and the Ku Klux Klan tore away at their dreams.
          The final blow came in 1924 when the city took the property through eminent domain and paid the couple a fraction of what they asked for. The city wanted the land for a park.
          The property -- now estimated to be worth $20 million -- was transferred to Los Angeles County in 1995. The houses directly next to the property have price tags of around $7 million each.
            Last year, Gov. Gavin Newsom signed legislation that would enable the county to return the beachfront property to their descendants.
            "Nothing like this has ever been done before," Los Angeles County Supervisor Janice Hahn said on Wednesday. "We can't change the past and we will never be able to make up for the injustice that was done to your great, great grandparents and great grandparents, Willa and Charles nearly a century ago. But this is a start."