Portraits of El Alisal Visitors by Charles Fletcher Lummis | KCET
Portraits of El Alisal Visitors by Charles Fletcher Lummis
As we've discovered in our exploration into Highland Park, Charles Fletcher Lummis was a man who wore many hats, literally and figuratively. Among many other roles, he was City Editor of Los Angeles Times, librarian at the L.A. Public Library, founder of the Southwest Museum, Indian rights activist, magazine publisher, and home builder. He had quite a unique fashion sense as well.
Every year in June, the Northeast Los Angeles community celebrates his life and legacy at the annual Lummis Day Festival, taking place at various locations around Highland Park, including Lummis' own home El Alisal. You can find more information by visiting their website.
El Alisal was a magnet for a "rainbow of cultural traditions." Musicians, poets, writers, and artists gathered at the Arroyo Seco-adjacent home for salon-like parties, which he dubbed "noises." A peek into The Autry National Center's online archives reveals a who's-who of L.A.'s bohemian culture who had visited El Alisal, often sitting for a portrait in front of Lummis' own camera. If Lummis Day were held during Lummis' lifetime, these are the intellectuals and eccentrics who likely would have attended the festival.
Here's a look at some of the visitors to El Alisal. The following portraits were all taken by Charles Lummis himself:
Snapshots from El Alisal:
Thousands of Haitian refugee families continue to be stranded in Tijuana, a city far from where they hoped would be their final destination. Since their arrival, photojournalist Omar Martínez has been documenting their Mexican lives.
Hsi Lai Temple is the largest Buddhist monastery in Southern California. Opened in 1988, it is also home to one of the best vegetarian buffets in L.A. County. But of course, they don’t advertise that. Still, all visitors, regardless of faith, are welcome.
Roughly 90 years later, the legacy of San Luis Obispo's Motel Inn still stands, along with part of the original building.