lunes, 20 de mayo de 2013

The decade Los Angeles really lit up: Power company photographs capture the spread of electricity in the 1940s

The City of Los Angeles has grown more than any major metropolitan city in America since the beginning of the twentieth century.
In 1900, the city Angels had little over 100,000 people but it wasn't until people moved west, especially after World War II, the population in the Los Angeles area really exploded.
In the late 1880s several small independent electric companies worked to bring power to Southern California.
In 1897, West Side Lighting Co. and Los Angeles Electric Co. merged to form Edison Electric Co. of Los Angeles,
As electricity expanded it also played a vital role in creating and expanding the infrastructure.
Edison Company photographers also documented the process, leaving a vast archive of photos that reveal the interiors of businesses, restaurants, nightclubs,hotels and other architectural gems of early Los Angeles.
Organised by William Deverell, history professor at University of Southern California, the pictures show life in LA in the 1940s and how the introduction of electricity impacted daily life around the home and the outside world.
It's part of an online exhibition entitled ' Form and Landscape: Southern California Edison and the Los Angeles Basin, 1940–1990' and features 70,000 digitized photos from the Southern California Edison archive of The Huntington Library, Art Collections, and Botanical Gardens.
'I’ve been fascinated with the Edison archive since it arrived here,' said Deverell of the tremendous trove of images.
'It’s such a gold mine of history—from the late 19th century to the late 20th century Edison had photographers out in the field documenting everything from the installation of telephone poles to various other electrical applications. Now we get to have some fun, dig more deeply, and look for what else is in these pictures—behind the telephone poles and switching stations. And there’s a lot there.'

Credits: Mail Online
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