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Victoria Bernal

Victoria Bernal

With over 120 years of family history in Los Angeles, Victoria Bernal is a chronicler who follows in her mother's footsteps documenting Southern California's past. In 2009, she and her mother started the hugely popular @lahistory Twitter feed, which draws attention to L.A.'s rich history on a daily basis.

Victoria Bernal
LA County Fair (1948), from CPP Archive
Article
Lost LA

Rare Photos from the Los Angeles County Fair's 100 Years

The Los Angeles County Fair turns 100 this year. Considering all the ways the fair has entertained, informed and marketed to Angelenos over the past 100 years, here is a glimpse of a few rare attractions that have lit up local imaginations over the last century.
Red trolley cars are parked outside of the North Hollywood depot, a yellow paneled building with dark brown trim and a large sign across the roof that reads "Southern Pacific - Pacific Electric Station." Pedestrians approach the depot on the sidewalk.
Article
Lost LA

Where to Find Remnants of L.A.'s Red Car System

Though the last of Los Angeles' famed Red Cars officially retired in 1961, there is still so much Pacific Electric history that can be found in the Southern California landscape — in expected and unexpected places.
A composite photo of Charlotta Bass, left, and Miriam Matthews, right
Article
Lost LA

These Two Women Spent Decades Highlighting the African Heritage of L.A.

Throughout the last century, two prominent African American women — Charlotta Bass and Miriam Matthews — consistently shone a light on the city's early African heritage, raising awareness of the Black heritage of the city's first settlers.
A view of the iconic landmark, the Bradbury Building, showing dark, ornamental grilling and brickwork and layers of stairs.
Article
Lost LA

The Savvy Mexican Businesswoman Behind the Iconic Bradbury Building

While the building’s namesake Lewis Bradbury is often referenced in historical accounts, his wife Simona is rarely mentioned alongside him even though she oversaw his business affairs after his death, including the completion of the iconic Bradbury Building.
A coloring page created by the Los Angeles Public Library's Octavia Lab. An illustration of Manuela C. García sitting next to a phonograph. Behind her is a faint sheet music background.
Article
Lost LA

Manuela C. García, the Voice Behind a Treasure Trove of Old Mexican Songs

Born in Los Angeles in the late 1860s, Manuela C. García is the voice behind over 100 songs in Charles Lummis' recordings of Southwest musical heritage. Known mostly by historians specializing in 19th-century Mexican American music, her voice connects California's present musical history with its past.
Close up of the Los Angeles Oil Field
Article
Lost LA

A Walk Along L.A.'s Original Borders Reveals Surprising Remnants from the City's Past

To walk the border of the sprawling City of Los Angeles as it is today (about 503 square miles) seems an inconceivable feat for most. But what if that walk circumnavigated the city as it was in 1781 or 1850, when Los Angeles was square-shaped measuring four square leagues?
La Pastorela (1931)
Article
Lost LA

La Pastorela: An Old Los Angeles Christmastime Tradition

Still performed today, La Pastorela was among the first theatrical productions staged in Southern California.
Map of Pio Pico's lands published by the Pio Pico State Historic Park
Article
Lost LA

Vast Swaths of Southern California Once Belonged to Pío Pico

If you call L.A., Orange, or San Diego County home, you may well live on one of Pico's former ranchos.
Nebraska State Picnic, 1925
Article
Lost LA

Hometown Picnics: How Newcomers Kept Memory of Home Alive in Los Angeles

Newcomers from Iowa famously congregated each year in Southern California for their state picnic. Such gatherings were important for migrants from other parts of the world, too.
EL Lindsey (cropped for FB)
Article
Lost LA

In 1915, This Woman Served as Mayor of Los Angeles (For 36 Hours)

L.A. City Councilmember Estelle Lawton Lindsey made history in 1915 when she served as acting mayor for 36 hours.
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