Southern California: Just thinking about our vast region (larger than many states), diverse population (numbering in the millions), and its unique role in the historical and cultural development of the state and nation boggles the mind.
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How the Los Angeles region became what it is today is a long and complex story. Much of our local history is preserved in libraries, museums, and other cultural institutions. Other valuable and unique collections – those that reveal the stories of neighborhoods, families, influential Angelenos – are scattered across the region, and are curated by smaller institutions and individual enthusiasts.
Our own collections at Metro’s Dorothy Peyton Gray Transportation Library and Archive are also an integral part of the history of the Los Angeles area. In order to promote the rich legacy of transportation history in Southern California, we play an active role in L.A. As Subject, a research alliance of more than 250 separate collections dedicated to preserving and improving access to the unique history and culture of Los Angeles. L.A. As Subject is hosted by Unversity of Southern California, and has announced the program for its marquee event of the year.
The event runs from 9:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m., features more than 70 historical collections and archives, and is free of charge.
History comes alive at this wonderful event where you can browse rare collections, consult with experts, and learn about researching Los Angeles and Southern California history, online tools, how to preserve your own personal history collections and images, and many other topics.
The full program for 2010 can be found here. The Special Guest Speaker will be KPCC host and L.A. Times columnist Patt Morrison, discussing how libraries and historical archives have informed her work. Morrison was a member of two Los Angeles Times reporting teams that won Pulitzer Prizes for coverage of the 1992 riots and the city’s 1994 Northridge earthquake.
The Archives Bazaar is a great opportunity for the public to interact with these member institutions and individuals who bring their unique collections together in one place. This event allows scholars, researchers, archivists, librarians, students, history enthusiasts, documentary filmmakers and “L.A. Nerds” the opportunity to visit several institutions at once – to network, explore, ponder, and marvel at the many fascinating facets of Los Angeles and Southern California.
Imagine all those fascinating libraries, archives, museums, historical societies and cultural institutions from throughout Southern California sharing their collections and stories in an “Antiques Road Show” type of setting. It would cost a small fortune in admission and transportation costs to visit just some of the more than 70 participating institutions (including us) which have reserved their exhibit space so far. On October 23, they’re all on display for you to peruse, ask questions, and explore…for free!
Other programming for the 5th Annual Archives Bazaar includes:
PANEL DISCUSSION: EXTRA! EXTRA! READ ALL ABOUT IT!
Today, the iconic newsboy hawking a newspaper on the street corner is only a memory. When will the newspaper and the newsstand also become memories? When will newspaper morgues become just that, or are they still a viable source for researchers? Join a panel of newspersons and newspaper archivists who will discuss the past, present, and future of the newspaper industry in Southern California.
PANEL DISCUSSION: BLOGGING L.A.
In recent years, blogs have become an indispensable source of news and information about the Los Angeles region. But what is their role in promoting Los Angeles history and investigating the city’s identity? Join three Southern California bloggers as they discuss how blogs can interpret the region’s past, present, and future.
PANEL DISCUSSION: UNCOVERING THE LEGACY OF DAVID ALFARO SIQUEIROS
Join Luis C. Garza, Oliver Mayer, and moderator Liza Posas for a conversation about the ongoing legacy of Mexican mural artist David Alfaro Siqueiros (1896–1974). In 1932, Siqueiros traveled to Los Angeles and painted three murals, which were met with resistance—two were whitewashed shortly after their creation. Despite the efforts to censor his artistic vision, his work has inspired artists from the 1930s to the present day and contributed to the development of the modern mural movement in Los Angeles and beyond.
PANEL DISCUSSION: L.A. TAKES FLIGHT
From aviation pioneers to daring test pilots to space shuttle assembly plants, human flight has long played an important role in Southern California. Learn how Los Angeles took flight as panelists Kenneth E. Pauley, Linda McCann, and Michael Palmer share the hidden aviation stories they have discovered in the region’s libraries and archives.
DOCUMENTARY FILM SCREENING: BRIDGING THE DIVIDE: TOM BRADLEY AND THE POLITICS OF RACE
This documentary is the first to tell the story of Tom Bradley, the first African-American elected mayor of a major U.S. city without a black majority. It is the story of an extraordinary multiracial coalition that transformed the city and in, the process, changed American politics. We will be screening a 20-minute trailer of this work-in-progress.
DOCUMENTARY FILM SCREENING: THE LEGEND OF PANCHO BARNES
Florence “Pancho” Barnes was one of the most important women in twentieth century aviation. A tough and fearless aviatrix, Pancho opened a ranch near Edwards Air Force Base that became a famous—some would say notorious—hangout for test pilots and movie stars. Known as the Happy Bottom Riding Club, it became the epicenter of the aviation world during the early Jet Age. Since then, Pancho herself has become something of a legend, a fascinating yet enigmatic icon whose swagger is often celebrated, but whose story has been largely unknown—until now.
EDUCATIONAL SESSION: PRIVATE PASSION — PUBLIC RESOURCE
A personal fascination and individual zeal can create a collection that has value to the wider world. Such focus can illuminate details and connections that more general collections might miss. Local collectors will share their personal insights into history, and how they have assembled materials that might otherwise be dispersed and potentially never available to researchers.
EDUCATIONAL SESSION: RESEARCHING LA 101
Ever wondered how to get started with your Los Angeles research, or research in general? This presentation will provide a detailed overview of how and where to start, including researching basics useful for anyone working with primary and secondary source material. Topics will include researching from home, visiting the archives, the ins and outs of reading rooms, and more.