Caltrans Exhibit Features Archived Images from L.A.'s Bicycling Past

USC Libraries

Caltrans Exhibit Features Archived Images from L.A.'s Bicycling Past

A new exhibit inside the District 7 headquarters of the California Department of Transportation (Caltrans) features images—many contributed by L.A. as Subject member archives—of Southern California's bicycling past.

Everyday Bicycling: Gearing up for Transportation, on display through June 20, highlights the bicycle as a practical transportation option. The archival images complement a variety of bicycles and bicycling gear on display and underscore the long attachment Southern Californians have felt to their two-wheeled, human-powered vehicles. 

As a recent L.A. as Subject post ("A Brief History of Bicycling in the Los Angeles Area") to KCET's SoCal Focus blog explained, a nationwide bicycling craze in the late-nineteenth century found resonance in Southern California, a region that prided itself on ideal year-round conditions for healthy outdoor activity. The public's enthusiasm spawned bicycle clubs, weekend joyrides between Los Angeles and Hollywood on a dusty Western Avenue, and an elevated, wooden cycleway between Los Angeles and Pasadena.

Photographs from the Claremont Colleges' Honnold/Mudd Library Special Collections, the Pasadena Museum of History, and the USC Libraries' Regional History Collection are included in the exhibit, which is free and open to the public weekdays from 8:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. The Caltrans museum space is located in the ground floor lobby of the Caltrans District 7 headquarters at 100 S. Main Street in downtown Los Angeles.