Treading the Boards: “The House of a Thousand Candles” at the Auditorium, Los Angeles, Week of 14 December 1908

by Paul R. Spitzzeri A previous post on this blog highlighted an October 1908 program from The Auditorium (also known as the Temple Auditorium and, later, the Philharmonic Auditorium), a theater across from Central Park (renamed Pershing Square) in Los Angeles, and featuring a play mounted by the company of prominent stage actor Lewis S.... Continue Reading →

“Christmas Draweth Nigh When . . .”: “Life” Magazine, 13 December 1883

by Paul R. Spitzzeri Tonight's featured artifact from the museum's collection is the third early issue of Life, a magazine that was published from 1883 to 1972, though it changed substantially in content and style over the decades.  Two previous posts this month highlighted issues from 1887 and 1897 and this one is from the 13... Continue Reading →

The Evolution of Christmas: Selling the Holiday in Los Angeles, 1874

by Paul R. Spitzzeri In the mid-1870s, greater Los Angeles was at the peak of its first significant and sustained growth boom, which began several years prior.  As its population rose and economy grew, its commerce reflected the good times, including more choices for residents with their consumer spending. More generally, Christmas was moving up... Continue Reading →

La La Landscapes: A New Donation of Photos Taken by Lemuel S. Ellis and William H. Fletcher, Los Angeles and Altadena, 1880s/1890s

by Paul R. Spitzzeri One of the most gratifying aspects of this blog is when people get in contact to say that a post connected them to their family history, told them something new about the community in which they live, or helped them in their research, among some prominent examples. Yesterday's post by Zac... Continue Reading →

Getting Schooled at an Institution of Higher Yearning: Surviving Scandal at Lordsburg College (University of La Verne,) 1891-1910

by Paul R. Spitzzeri As America's population and economic power grew by leaps and bounds in the late 19th century, so did its educational systems, including colleges and universities.  In Los Angeles, St. Vincent's College opened in 1865, though it served male students from grammar school upwards. During the first significant period of growth in... Continue Reading →

“The Successful Maintenance of Our Belligerent Rights”: The Mexican-American War in Los Angeles from a Report of the Secretary of the Navy, 6 December 1847

by Paul R. Spitzzeri Today's meeting of the Homestead's Fiction Book Club included a discussion of Winston Groom's Kearny's March: The Epic Creation of the American West, 1846-1847 detailing the remarkable march of Brigadier General Stephen Watts Kearny with his Army of the West in June 1846 from Fort Leavenworth, Kansas, after receiving orders from Washington... Continue Reading →

“For Your Own Family Pride”: A Letter from J. Perry Worden to Walter P. Temple, 5 December 1922

by Paul R. Spitzzeri As has been noted in a couple of previous posts in this blog, James Perry Worden (1866-1945) was hired by Walter P. Temple to write a history of the Workman and Temple families, but the project dragged on for years and went unfinished.  Worden's papers were acquired after his death from... Continue Reading →

Blog at

Up ↑

%d bloggers like this: