Los Angeles County
1910 to 1929
The first international Air Meet
ever is held at Dominguez Field for ten days. The first powered flight in the west occurs
at this event. A bomb
explosion, resulting in the death of 21 people, destroys
the printing plant of the Los Angeles Times. Harrison Otis of the Los Angeles Times unites
with Los Angeles business interests to fight the activities of trade unions. Hollywood is
annexed by the City of Los Angeles in order to receive water from the citys new
water supply. The 11,050-foot breakwater at Los Angeles Harbor is completed.
Union leaders James and Joseph
McNamara are convicted of the Los Angeles Times bombing. Clarence Darrow, their
defense attorney, is indicted for bribing the jury but is later acquitted. African
Americans are barred from beaches in Manhattan Beach. C.P. Rodgers makes the
first transcontinental airplane flight from
New York to Pasadena. He makes numerous stops
along the way and spends 82 hours and 4 minutes in the air.
The African-American-owned Golden
West Hotel is erected on Central Avenue. The first gas station in Los Angeles opens. The
Museum of History, Science and Art opens. The Los Angeles County Library is established.
The Los Angeles Aqueduct begins
delivering water from the Owens Valley. It was the largest municipal water system in the
nation and transformed the San Fernando Valley. The California legislature passes the
Alien Land Bill that limits leases and purchases of agricultural land to Japanese
persons. Cecil B. DeMille telegrams his New York partners for authority to rent a barn in
Hollywood to film the motion picture The Squaw Man. The Southwest Museum opens.
Over Los Angeles, Georgia Broadwick becomes the first
women to parachute from an airplane.
Heavy flooding causes
$10 million in damage, including tremendous damage to the Los Angeles Harbor. With the success of the film
The Birth of a Nation by D.W. Griffith, Los Angeles becomes the center of the motion
picture industry. Ford Motor
Company opens the first auto assembly plant in Southern California in
Los Angeles at Seventh and Santa Fe Streets to assemble Model T Fords.
The S.S. Missourian becomes the first vessel to dock at Los Angeles
Harbor after passing through the Panama Canal.
severe flooding from the year before, the Los Angeles County Flood
Control District is formed. The San Fernando Valley is
annexed by the City of Los Angeles. Direct steamer service is established between Los
Angeles and Japan.
Upton Sinclair settles in
Pasadena. Construction of the Hollywood Bowl begins on a former Indian campsite. Donald
Douglas founds his own aviation company. A large number of African-Americans from the
south migrate to Los Angeles. The first overhead power lines in Los Angeles are strung by
the Bureau of Power and Light. Captain G. Allan Hancock donates Hancock Park,
which includes La Brea Tar Pits, to the county.
The Tournament of Roses switches
back to football games from chariot games. Architect Frank Lloyd Wright begins building
the "Hollyhock House" for heiress Aline Barnsdall, the first of five houses in the Los Angeles area. For the first time, the population of
Los Angeles exceeds that of San Francisco. Forest Lawn Cemetery is established in
A 100-inch telescope is installed
in the Mount Wilson Observatory. The Second Street Tunnel beneath Bunker Hill opens.
Shell Oil begins oil exploration
in Long Beach on Signal Hill. The Los Angeles Philharmonic Orchestra is founded. The
University of California, Southern Branch (UCLA), is formed from the State Normal School.
William Wrigley Jr. and several other investors purchase Catalina Island
from the Banning family. The island is then developed and promoted for tourism.
Comedian Fatty Arbuckle is
alleged to have sexually assaulted and murdered Virginia Rappe at a party. Although
Arbuckle is tried and acquitted, outcries against Hollywood morality moves the movie
industry to attempt to change its product and image. The Los Angeles Metropolitan Water
District takes its water search to the Colorado River. A large migration of Mexicans to
Los Angeles begins. Southern California passes up Northern California in population.
Simon Rodia, an unemployed
Italian immigrant welder, begins work on what would become known as the Watts Towers. It
is a tribute to his adopted homeland. The Union Oil Company discovers oil on the Alphonzo
Bell Ranch in Santa Fe Springs. Amelia Earhart Putnam's
career begins in Los Angeles when, at age 24, she takes flying
lessons from Neta Snook and buys her first airplane.
A.W. Ross establishes Wilshire
Boulevard as a "shopping" district. The Port of Los Angeles is selected as the
base of the U.S. Navy Pacific Fleet. The Rose Bowl is completed. The Hollywood Bowl opens
with its first performance and hosts its first Easter sunrise service. Radio broadcasting
comes to Los Angeles with stations KHJ, KFI and KNX. "Reb" Spikes recorded the Kid
Ory band in a Central Avenue studio, the first audio recording of a
black New Orleans jazz band.
Angelus Temple is established.
One of the largest churches in the nation, it serves as the home of Aimee Semple
McPherson, a faith healer and preacher. McPherson becomes one of the most talked about Los
Angeles personalities in the 1920s. The Los Angeles Memorial Coliseum is completed. The
Hollywoodland sign is erected.
The first dynamite blast occurs
on the Los Angeles Aqueduct as Owens Valley residents attempt to block further diversion
of the Owens River to Los Angeles. A small army of Owens Valley residents seizes the Los
Angeles Aqueduct near Lone Pine and shuts off the water flow to Los Angeles. Los Angeles
Citys population reaches one million. Of these, 43,000 are real estate agents. An
opera company is established in Los Angeles. The
first airplane to ever fly
around the world is built in Santa Monica. It is a
Douglas World Cruiser named New Orleans.
The main Public
Library Building is completed in downtown Los Angeles. Due to
overcrowding at the Vermont Avenue campus of the University of
California in Los Angeles, voters in Los Angeles, Beverly Hills, Santa
Monica and Venice (then an independent city) approve $1 million in
bonds for the purchase of a Westwood site for a new campus. Work
begins on a new subway and the Subway Terminal Building on Hill
Street. The new Shrine Auditorium opens (replacing the former
structure that had been destroyed by fire). Patriotic Hall and Olympic
Auditorium are completed. Airmail service begins in Los Angeles. Miss
Aline Barnsdall presents her property on Olive Hill as an art center
and park. The Sears-Roebuck Building on East Ninth Street opens.
Aimee McPherson disappears while
swimming near Ocean Park, only to reappear a week later in a Mexican border town. The
Spanish language newspaper La Opinion is first published. The new Los
Angeles Central Library opens.
Los Angeles deploys a trainload
of World War I veterans to the Owens Valley to patrol the Los Angeles Aqueduct. The first
Los Angeles Open golf tournament is held. Warner Brothers ends the silent era of movies
with their "talkie" The Jazz Singer. The first movie premier opens at
Graumans (now Manns) Chinese Theater. It was the first time klieg lights were
used for a promotion. A throng of 200,000 greets aviator Charles Lindbergh and
his Spirit of St. Louis, upon visiting Los Angeles.
Los Angeles is found to have the
highest suicide rate in the nation. The San Francisquito Dam bursts, tragically
taking 400 lives in the resulting flood. The new Los Angeles city hall is
opened. A daily air link between Los Angeles and San Francisco opens for
passengers. The Metropolitan Water District of Southern California is established
by charter cities
Beverly Hills, Burbank, Compton, Fullerton, Glendale, Long Beach, Los Angeles,
Pasadena, San Marino, Santa Monica, Torrance, Anaheim and Santa Ana. The Hotel Sommerville (renamed Dunbar Hotel
in 1929), a popular center for African Americans, is opened on Central Avenue by
John Sommerville (who, with wife
Vada Watson, were the first African Americans to graduate from the USC School of
Dentistry). The hotel hosts the first national convention of the NAACP in the
west. Christine Sterling begins the restoration of Olvera Street. The Henry E. Huntington Library opens to the public. The first Mickey Mouse
cartoon is made. The Los Angeles City Council selects 640 acres of a former
wheat, barley, and lima bean field as the location for the new City of Los
Angeles Airport. The property is first named Mines Field for real estate agent
William W. Mines who arranges the deal. The airport is composed of dirt strips
with no buildings.
Groundbreaking ceremonies are
held for the new Pacific Stock Exchange. Wall Street and crashes one week later. The first
motion picture Academy Awards are presented. UCLA moves to the Westwood location. The
dirigible Graf Zeppelin lands at Mines Field after flying in from Japan.
The Hotel Sommerville, a popular center for African Americans opened
only the year before, is sold to Lucius Lomax Sr. The hotel is renamed
to honor poet Paul Laurence Dunbar.