Nathan Masters looking at surfboards | Still from Lost LA Season 3 Beach Culture

How a WWII Plane Revolutionized Surfing

The first surfboards were made from woods that were heavy and unwieldy. Enter WWII, when the need for ever-lighter planes helped spur the creation of balsa wood structures blended with fiberglass, a perfect material for surfboards. Now common, foam boards, called foamies, also required technological innovation and three years of experimentation to get the foam to the ideal consistency for a surfboard. Now, the first two foam surfboards reside in a museum.
 

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LA as SubjectA collaboration between the USC Libraries and KCETLink, Lost LA features the member collections of L.A. as Subject, a research alliance dedicated to preserving and telling the sometimes-hidden stories and histories of the Los Angeles region.

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Three Views of Manzanar: Ansel Adams, Dorothea Lange and Toyo Miyatake

Despite the trauma of their incarceration during World War II, Japanese Americans built new lives while detained at concentration camps like Manzanar. They played baseball, planted gardens and made the honor roll. Three renowned photographers captured these scenes: outsiders Dorothea Lange and Ansel Adams and incarceree Tōyō Miyatake who boldly smuggled in a camera lens to document life from within the camp. All three trained their lenses on small yet profound moments of dignity and domesticity, documenting resilience in the face of civil injustice.

  • 2019-10-22T13:30:20-07:00
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  • 2019-10-22T17:30:01-07:00
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  • 2019-10-23T04:30:00-07:00
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  • 2019-10-23T22:30:00-07:00
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  • 2019-10-24T05:30:00-07:00
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  • 2019-10-24T13:30:00-07:00
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  • 2019-10-26T07:30:00-07:00
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Bootlegger Tunnels: A Journey Through LA’s Prohibition Lore

There is always lore ingrained in a city’s history, particularly one like Los Angeles. It is no secret that throughout the Prohibition Era individuals living in the city continued to enjoy their vices as much, if not more, than they ever had before. But it is how they subverted the law that still remains unclear. In this episode, we explore the myths of subterranean Los Angeles, crawl through claimed prohibition-era bootlegger tunnels and visit some of the city’s oldest speakeasies along the way.

  • 2019-10-29T13:30:00-07:00
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  • 2019-10-29T17:30:00-07:00
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  • 2019-10-30T04:30:00-07:00
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  • 2019-10-31T05:30:00-07:00
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  • 2019-10-31T13:30:00-07:00
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  • 2019-11-02T07:30:00-07:00
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Paul Revere Williams: An African-American Architect in Jet-Age L.A.

Although best known for designing the homes of celebrities like Lucille Ball and Frank Sinatra, the pioneering African-American architect Paul Revere Williams also contributed to some of the city’s most recognizable civic structures — all while confronting racial barriers.

  • 2019-11-05T12:30:00-08:00
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  • 2019-11-05T16:30:00-08:00
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  • 2019-11-06T03:30:00-08:00
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  • 2019-11-09T06:30:00-08:00
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  • 2019-11-09T11:30:00-08:00
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Discovering the Universe: Exploring the Cosmos Atop Mount Wilson

As recently as a century ago, scientists doubted whether the universe extended beyond our own Milky Way — until astronomer Edwin Hubble, working with the world’s most powerful telescope in the mountains high above Los Angeles, discovered just how vast the universe truly is. Visit the underground vault of the Carnegie Observatories, where paradigm-shifting discoveries are annotated by hand on glass photographic slides; and the historic Mount Wilson observatory.

  • 2019-11-12T12:30:00-08:00
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  • 2019-11-12T16:30:00-08:00
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  • 2019-11-13T03:30:00-08:00
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  • 2019-11-13T21:30:00-08:00
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  • 2019-11-16T06:30:00-08:00
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  • 2019-11-16T11:30:00-08:00
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Shindana Toy Company: Changing the American Doll Industry

The Watts riots (also known as the Watts Rebellion or Uprising) left South Los Angeles in social and economic distress. In its wake, Operation Bootstrap, a non-profit community-based organization was formed, with hopes of facilitating change through community empowerment. This episode explores the lasting impact of one Operation Bootstrap initiative, the Shindana Toy Company, which left a lasting mark on the American doll industry by manufacturing ethnically correct black dolls.

  • 2019-11-19T12:30:00-08:00
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  • 2019-11-19T16:30:00-08:00
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  • 2019-11-20T03:30:00-08:00
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