Photographs of Historic Los Angeles

Discussion in 'California' started by NileGuide, Feb 4, 2011.  |  Print Topic

  1. NileGuide

    NileGuide News Feed

    Recently I have been looking through a bunch of collections featuring pictures of historic Los Angeles. I think the thrill I get from these photos is connected to the rapid growth of the city of Los Angeles during the last century, growth that has resulted in drastic changes to the landscape over mere decades. Hurrah Los Angeles for transforming yourself on a regular basis, though it really is a shame about all losing all those beautiful streetcars! In an attempt to share my enthusiasm about this old photography, I surveyed the material at the online Library Congress photo collection and created this sequence for your viewing pleasure. Los Angeles from the 1890s to 1942:
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    General view of Los Angeles; sometime between 1880-1899 (loc.gov link)

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    Coachload of charming photographers at Floral Parade; 1901 (loc.gov link)
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    Ye Alpine Tavern on Mt. Lowe; sometime between 1900 and 1910 (loc.gov link)
    More pics. Today you can hike up there and see the ruins.
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    First all-woman jury in California; 1911 (loc.gov link)
    Trial of the editor of Watts News for indecent language resulted in an acquittal.
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    Venice, California (with Antier Hotel in background); 1912 (loc.gov link)
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    Grider’s Birdland Library in Los Angeles; 1916 (loc.gov link)
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    Myrtle Lind with a Graflex camera on the beach; 1919 (loc.gov link)
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    Al Malaikah in Los Angeles; early 1920s (loc.gov link)
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    Dorothea Lange’s famous Farm Security Administration shot “Toward Los Angeles;” 1937 (loc.gov link)
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    Evacuees in L.A. await trains to Santa Anita Assembly Center during Japanese Internment; 1942 (loc.gov link)
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    MORE WEBSITES WITH OLD PHOTOS OF LOS ANGELES
    This SkyscraperPage Forum thread is just great.
    This UCLA collection features 5,746 photos from The Los Angeles Times and Los Angeles Daily News.
    Here is the Los Angeles Public library collection. Images are medium sized; the search box helps with exploring them.
    For San Fernando Valley pictures, here is the CSUN library collection.
    And finally, the USC collection. A little tricky to navigate; clearly they have a ton of images.
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    SOME PHOTO BOOKS FEATURING HISTORIC LOS ANGELES:
    Picturing Los Angeles by Jon and Nancy Wilkman — Visual history of Los Angeles.
    California Crazy and Beyond: Vernacular Architecture by Jim Heimann — Great roadside architecture photos!
    Yesterday’s Los Angeles by Norman Dash — Photos organized by date; engaging captions.
    Views of Los Angeles by Gernot Kuehn — Contrasting the past and present in photos of Los Angeles; book is from 1978.
    [Thumbnail photo of Los Angeles earthquake courtesy of Library of Congress]


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