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Smithsonian Associates - Entertaining, Informative, Eclectic, Insightful

Los Angeles: Creating the Vision

Evening Lecture/Seminar

Wednesday, October 6, 2021 - 7:30 p.m. to 9:00 p.m. ET
Code: 1NV079
Select Your Tickets
$25 - Member
$30 - Non-Member

Downtown Los Angeles

Please Note: This program has a rescheduled date (originally August 26, 2021).

From the last years of the 19th century throughout much of the following one, alluring images of endless sunshine, pristine beaches, and snow-capped mountains filled magazine stories and tourist pamphlets promoting Los Angeles and Southern California. But LA’s civic boosters wanted to be seen as much more. 

Discover how Los Angeles evolved from a destination for health seekers and winter vacations targeting the middle class from the Midwest and East to become a dynamic center of industry and the leading port of the Western United States. Building on the natural advantage of climate, the city’s leaders overcame the lack of an abundant water supply by reaching out hundreds of miles to secure water and the lack of a natural harbor by creating a great harbor where only mud flats had existed. By the end of the 1920s, the city became a center for oil production and for the manufacturing of automobiles, tires, furniture, aircraft, and the leader in motion picture production.

In a richly illustrated program, Bill Keene covers the period from the city’s founding in 1781 to 1930 as he draws on booster literature, magazine articles, and scholarly and informal histories to examine how LA’s vision of itself became a reality.

Patron Information

  • If you register multiple individuals, you will be asked to supply individual names and email addresses so they can receive a Zoom link email. Please note that if there is a change in program schedule or a cancellation, we will notify you via email, and it will be your responsibility to notify other registrants in your group.
  • Unless otherwise noted, registration for streaming programs typically closes two hours prior to the start time on the date of the program.
  • Once registered, patrons should receive an automatic email confirmation from CustomerService@SmithsonianAssociates.org.
  • Separate Zoom link information will be emailed closer to the date of the program. If you do not receive your Zoom link information 24 hours prior to the start of the program, please email Customer Service for assistance.
  • View Common FAQs about our Streaming Programs on Zoom.
This program is part of our
Smithsonian Associates Streaming series.