1848-1899

USC DML Rare Books and Manuscripts

Rare Books & Manuscripts oversees rare books, manuscripts, and historic photographs for the University of Southern California. In addition to its book holdings, Rare Books & Manuscripts maintains approximately two hundred collections of manuscripts, correspondence, archives, and artifacts. Among the collections related specifically to Los Angeles are the following: • Coulter’s Dry Goods: the Coulter family founded this business in down-town Los Angeles in 1878 and it flourished until the 1960s; included in the collection are a family history of B.F. Coulter, family photographs, photographs of window and counter displays, business correspondence, and news-paper clippings • Charles Leland Bagley: directories, minutes, bylaws, and correspondence that reflect the activities of band and orchestra musician, lawyer (graduate of the University of Southern California Law School, 1910–1911), and labor organizer Charles Leland Bagley (1873–1965); also in the collection are copies of the union publication Overture, which printed Bagley’s history of musical life in Los Angeles during the early decades of the twentieth century • Agua Caliente Indians (Judge Hilton McCabe): historical and legal files dating to the 1950s and 1960s that deal with the territorial claims of the Agua Caliente Indians near Palm Springs, as well as typescripts for and a copy of Golden Checkerboard, the book dealing with this subject that journalist Ed Ainsworth published in 1965 • The Scribes: rosters, minutes, bylaws, and members’ correspondence for the period 1926 to 1955 from the exclusive newspapermen’s club, which was founded in 1897 in Los Angeles • George H. Stewart: scrapbook of invitations, tickets, souvenir menus, acknowledgments, and newspaper clippings which was compiled between 1891 and 1910 by banker George H. Stewart, who was active in the Los Angeles Chamber of Commerce and its president in 1908 and 1909 • Library of Aeronautical History: memoirs; training manuals; photographs of aircraft, airfields, and maintenance facilities; advertising brochures; and ephemera relating to early commercial aviation in the United States, with an emphasis on Southern California, the first airmail and cargo carriers, and the Western Air Express company (founded in 1926; later Western Air Lines) • Women’s International Association of Aeronautics (WIAA): biographies of early female aviators; correspondence; photographs; memorabilia; scrapbooks; instructional materials; copies of the WIAA publication Aerogram; and the personal archives of Elizabeth L. McQueen (Mrs. Ulysses Grant McQueen, d. 1958), founder of the WIAA and the Women’s Aeronautic Association of California, and organizer of the so-called Powder Puff Derby (Women’s Air Derby) • Poets Garden: publications, letters, diaries, and memorabilia of the women’s literary group surrounding Los Angeles poet Ruth Le Prade (1895–1969), along with material relating to West Coast poet Edwin Markham (1852–1940) • Los Angeles Corral of the Westerners: business files, correspondence, and publications archive for the period 1950 to the present from the Los Angeles chapter of the Westerners, a national organization devoted to the history of the Old West • Lawrence Lipton: during the 1950s, Lawrence Lipton (1890–1975) was instrumental in the creation of Venice West as the center of the Los Angeles beat movement; in the collection are business files, tax records, correspondence, typescripts, photographs, newspaper clippings, and literary journals; audiotaped interviews, readings, and radio programs, and Lipton’s archives for his Los Angeles Free Press column, “Radio Free America,” are also included • Illuminati Press: literary publications published between 1983 and 1988 by this Los Angeles small press • Rolfe/Lennon: articles (some photocopied) on Southern Californian literature, politics, and entertainment and on Jewish subjects written by the team of journalists Lionel Rolfe (b. 1942) and Nigey Lennon (b. 1954) between 1970 and the present, along with drafts for Rolfe’s Literary L.A. (1979) • Rupert Hughes: archives of Los Angeles novelist, biographer, screenwriter, and musicologist Rupert Hughes (1872–1956), including subject files, typescripts, correspondence, published articles, and personal memorabilia • Stephen Longstreet: typescripts, galleys, and drawings for books published by novelist, screenwriter, and art historian Stephen Longstreet (b. 1907), who taught creative writing at the University of Southern California between 1975 and 1980 • Henry Z. Osborne: miscellaneous papers relating to the Osborne family’s business and real estate activities in Los Angeles between 1900 and 1920; Californians twice elected Henry Zenas Osborne (1848–1923) to the U.S. House of Representatives • James Arkatov: approximately two hundred black-and-white images of classical conductors and soloists photographed in concert by Los Angeles Philharmonic cellist James Arkatov between 1950 and 1980.

University of California, Riverside, California Museum of Photography

Images of Los Angeles and its communities are preserved in the collections of the California Museum of Photography. In the immense archive of vintage stereographic negatives and prints known as the Keystone-Mast Collection are views taken between 1885 and 1960 of places, people, landmarks, industries, agriculture, and historical events in the Los Angeles region. The University Print Collection contains work by over one thousand contemporary and historical photographers. Its Los Angeles-related holdings include negatives from Ansel Adams’s Fiat Lux project which show the campus of the University of California, Los Angeles, and the surrounding area in the 1960s; the archive of original negatives shot by photographer Will Connell in Los Angeles between the late 1920s and the early 1960s; Robert Cleveland’s photographs from the 1940s and 1950s of buildings and architecture in Los Angeles; studio photographs of children, families, entertainers, and burlesque performers taken between 1940 and 1976 at Raoul Gradvolh’s studios in Hollywood and downtown Los Angeles; Kodak Cirkut camera images (10 x 39–60 in. panoramas) taken by William Amos Hanes during the early 1900s which record events and places in Los Angeles, including residential areas, sanitariums, industrial and recreational sites, and downtown; and Louis Jarvis’s photographs of leisure in Pasadena in the 1890s. The museum also has a modest collection of rare photographic books and albums dating to the early decades of the twentieth century.

Skirball Cultural Center

The Skirball Cultural Center explores the linkage between American Jewish life and American democratic values through cultural programs and museum exhibitions for all ages and backgrounds. Designed by internationally renowned architect Moshe Safdie, the Skirball comprises a museum, a discovery center, an educational resource center, classrooms and various meeting and social facilities. On permanent exhibition at the museum is “Visions and Values: Jewish Life from Antiquity to America,” which chronicles 4,000 years of the Jewish experience in the Old and New worlds. The visitor is guided from antiquity to arrival in the United States and integration into American life. Large-scale reproductions of an archaeological site at an ancient synagogue in Israel and the Statue of Liberty’s arm and torch are on display, along with historical and political objects and documents about Jews in American dating from colonial times to the present. The Skirball’s permanent collections, which hold more than 25,000 artifacts, include one of the five largest collections of Judaica in the world and the Project Americana Collection. The latter contains family and institutional memorabilia, and family photographs reflecting the experience of the Jewish community in the United States. Some of the material in the Project Americana Collection documents Jewish migration to Los Angeles from other parts of the country and abroad. The Skirball’s outstanding archaeological collection is housed in the Teri Bell Ziffren Discovery Center, which offers an insider’s tour of the archaeology world to explorers ages 5 and up - a tour that includes the opportunity to excavate the simulated remains of an ancient Israelite at the Outdoor Archaeology Dig.

Natural History Museum of Los Angeles County, Seaver Center for Western History Research

The Seaver Center for Western History Research collects, preserves, and makes available to the general public and to scholars historic records pertaining to the history and the exploration of the trans-Mississippi American West, with particular emphasis on Southern California and Los Angeles. Its historic records holdings include (but are not limited to) manuscript materials, books, serials, trade catalogs, pamphlets, broadsides, maps, posters, prints, photographs, and a historic site file listing information on some eight hundred fifty buildings in Southern California. The Seaver Center also acquires research materials that support History Division exhibits and research by History Division curators.

Glendale Public Library, Special Collections

The Glendale History Room at the Downtown Central Glendale Library, Arts & Culture Library contains monographs about the City of Glendale and its history, clippings from newspapers published in the Glendale area, historical photographs, and ephemera related to community events and organizations. Materials about neighboring cities and Los Angeles County-adjacent counties.  Materials written by local authors part of the collection. In addition to scrapbooks assembled by local organizations and

individuals, the archival holdings include the personal papers of Carroll “Mr. Glendale” Parcher (1903–1992), who was at various times the editor of the Glendale News-Press, a member of the city council, and the city’s mayor; and the papers of Dora Verdugo (1882–1984), who was the great-granddaughter of Jose Verdugo, the original recipient in 1784 of the Spanish land grant for the property on which the City of Glendale is located.

Ebell of Los Angeles

Yearbooks, newsletters and bulletins, scrapbooks describing club activities and philanthropic activities spanning the years from 1894 through the present. Furnishings, artworks including paintings and sculpture, clocks, textiles and costumes.

Catalina Island Museum Society, Inc.

The exhibitions of the Catalina Island Museum draw on the collections and archival holdings of the Catalina Island Museum Society. The archaeological site material in the society’s collections dates from approximately seven thousand years ago to the early 1800s. This material includes artifacts from the indigenous people known as the Gabrieliño who were living on Catalina Island when the Spanish arrived in 1542. Also in the collections are approximately two thousand items dating from the 1880s to the present which pertain to Catalina Island’s maritime history and local industries and to sport fishing, recreation, and tourism. Items include boat models, boat motors, fish mounts, fishing rods and reels, early paddleboards, swimsuits, postcards, and Catalina pottery and tiles. A small number of paintings and prints of historical interest are in the collections as well. The society’s archives contain more than one hundred audiotaped oral history interviews with local residents, including many with members of the island’s Mexican American population, as well as several maps, various city and school records, a substantial ephemera collection documenting social and political activities on Catalina Island, and a very large number of photographs. Most of these holdings date to between the 1880s and the present.

Autry Library, Autry Museum of the American West

Access to the archival and artifact collections of the Autry National Center Museum of the American West and the Southwest Museum of the American Indian is through the Institute for the Study of the American West's Autry Library or Braun Research Library. The Autry Library collects books, sound recordings, and printed materials related to the history, geography, fine arts, and material, popular and consumer culture of the American West. Archival materials and artifacts related to Los Angeles cover Spanish California, and Southern California history, tourism, and industry. The museum's strongest archival collection documents the West of the imagination and the Hollywood cowboy. Materials in the collection include posters, scripts, press kits, fan letters, costume designs, scrapbooks, and publicity stills that document the growth of the film and television industry as well as key personalities in the field. The Braun Research Library supports the activities of the Southwest Museum of the American Indian. This renowned collection is strong in the fields of ethnology, archaeology, linguistics, folklore, and the history of Arizona, California, and the Southwest. It collection related to Southern California includes books and serials on tribal histories, government, and social life and customs of the native peoples, a large photo archive, more than 700 wax cylinder recordings of Mexican American and Native American songs recorded by Charles F. Lummis between 1895 and 1912 in the Southern California area, manuscript materials strong in local history and the history of American anthropology. The collection includes approximately 50,000 books and serials, 2,000 sound recordings, 3,000 maps, 147,000 photographs, 3,000 works of art on paper, and 700 manuscript collections.

California African American Museum

The California African American Museum collects, preserves, interprets, and displays materials that honor the contributions of African Americans to world history and culture. The museum’s art collection focuses on works created by African American artists from the 1800s to the present. It also includes traditional African art and contemporary art by those of the African Diaspora. The museum’s historical collection consists of documents, photographs, artifacts, and other material culture of African Americans, with an emphasis on documenting the experiences of African Americans in California and the American West from the late 1900s to the present. In the museum’s archival collection are books, periodicals, research materials, audio recordings, videos, vintage films, and other artifacts relating to African Americans. Materials specific to Los Angeles are found in the Miriam Matthews Photographic Collection, which contains images depicting African American subjects in Los Angeles from the 1880s to the 1970s collected by California’s first African American librarian; the Vassie D. Wright Collection, which consists of African American literary and historical works donated by the founder and the members of the local Our Authors Study Club; the Walter Burrell Collection, which comprises audio recordings of Burrell’s interviews with African American celebrities, which were broadcast by a local radio station in the early 1970s; and the oral histories collected from Celes King, a member of the family that owned the Dunbar Hotel, local civil rights activist, and former Tuskegee airman, and from John Outterbridge, a visual artist who has been based in Los Angeles since the 1960s and is renowned for his assemblages and for his mentoring of younger artists.