“Barbaric Magnificence”: Photos from La Fiesta de Las Flores, Los Angeles, 3 May 1915

by Paul R. Spitzzeri As Los Angeles exploded, during the late 19th and early 20th centuries, from a remote, frontier town to a major American metropolis, there were many ways in which this was manifested, including its business and industrial base, the film industry, educational development, its transportation system, and many others. Another important reflection... Continue Reading →

Through the Viewfinder: A Stereographic Photograph From Central Park to the Normal School, Los Angeles, April 1883

by Paul R. Spitzzeri In the continuing "Through the Viewfinder" series of posts, tonight's highlighted artifact from the Homestead's collection is a remarkable stereoscopic photograph taken from Central Park to the Normal School in downtown Los Angeles. Inscribed with a date of April 1883, but unattributed, with no indication as to the photographer, the image... Continue Reading →

Getting Schooled with the Star and Crescent Literary Society, Los Angeles High School, 29 April 1898

by Paul R. Spitzzeri Among the many transformations in greater Los Angeles during the Victorian era, which basically lasted from around 1840 to about 1900, was the dramatic growth in education among its citizens.  Taking just the Workman and Temple families as an example, Antonia Margarita Workman, who was of school age from the mid-1830s... Continue Reading →

An “Oriental Imagination” for an “Acropolis of the Caucasian Race”: E.G. Lewis and the Palos Verdes Estates Project, 1921-1924

by Paul R. Spitzzeri Photos show a mild-mannered looking fellow with large glasses befitting a shy clerk more than an ambitious promoter with massive ideas and a talent for raising millions of dollars from investors.  E.G. Lewis, however, proved to be an incredibly complex figure, who managed to avoid too much legal jeopardy for about... Continue Reading →

No Place Like Home: The Residence of Edwin T. Earl, Los Angeles, ca. 1910s

by Paul R. Spitzzeri Last November, a "No Place Like Home" post here focused on the highly eclectic residence of the very powerful publisher of the Los Angeles Times, Harrison Gray Otis.  Otis' home, called "The Bivouac," was located on Wilshire Boulevard and his next door neighbor was friendly rival in the newspaper business, Edwin T.... Continue Reading →

Through the Viewfinder: Live Oak Canyon Dam, La Verne, 1925

by Paul R. Spitzzeri With its frequent years of low rainfall and drought punctuated by occasional intervals of heavy rains and significant flooding, greater Los Angeles' massive growth from the late 1880s onward, especially in the suburbs, increasingly forced local leaders to confront the question of flood control. Massive floods in the winter of 1913-14... Continue Reading →

The Lincoln Centenary Celebration, Simpson Auditorium, Los Angeles, 12 February 1909

by Paul R. Spitzzeri Abraham Lincoln is widely accounted as among the greatest of Americans, but you'd be hard pressed to find any local public event today that honors the 16th president of the United States, with the conspicuous exception of the 27th annual Abraham Lincoln Remembrance, held this morning at the Los Angeles National... Continue Reading →

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