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Peek in the Stacks: publications

The Carl S. Dentzel Collection

The Carl S. Dentzel Collection documents the work and influence of Dentzel throughout his lifetime as a journalist and a community activist, including the renaming of the city of Northridge, coverage of the conflicts abroad between the U.S., Central America, South America, and Europe, and his work with organizations such as the Cultural Heritage Board of the City of Los Angeles...

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"The Naturall Language of the Hand"

American Sign Language, the predominant sign language used by deaf communities in the United States and much of Canada, began in the 19th century. Prior to its creation, local sign languages were developed and used in the US and around the world. Our knowledge of these early sign languages is contained within contemporary written works that primarily described what are called "manual alphabets," or fingerspelling systems....

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The Susan B. Nelson Collection

The Susan B. Nelson Collection documents Susan Nelson's professional and personal life, most notably the fundamental role she played in the creation of the Santa Monica Mountains National Recreation Area. The collection details the work of the Friends of the Santa Monica Mountains' Parks and Seashore and the Santa Monica Mountains and Seashore Foundation, which Nelson worked with to realize the dream of an urban park for residents of the greater Los Angeles area...

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Bach, Segovia, and the Rise of Classical Guitar on the Concert Stage

Johann Sebastian Bach wrote hundreds of works in his lifetime that were forgotten for more than a century after his death. It wasn't until Felix Mendelssohn, well-known composer and pianist of the 19th century, stumbled upon Bach's music by chance and brought it back to the public to enjoy once again, that interest in Bach’s music was reignited. Bach’s music was cherished once again, and many composers ...

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Four Walls, a Roof, and Neighbors in Close Proximity: Shared Living Spaces in Early 20th Century Los Angeles

Los Angeles’ population rapidly grew in the early 20th century, partially due to the efforts of boosters and the nascent film industry. The Official Los Angeles Key from December 1913 described the city as a space where "opportunity clasps hands with ambition, while enterprise and success are the twin virtues that lure the man of moderate means, as well as the capitalist..."

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The Oldest Profession

The scholarly study of prostitution began to flourish in the mid-1980s sparked by public health concerns over sexually transmitted diseases, the need for legislative protections against sexualized violence and sex trafficking, and a growing awareness of relationships between sex work, substance abuse, and mental health. The regulation of prostitution in the United States is not ...

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A Look Back at School Desegregation and Busing in Los Angeles

In 1961, Mary Ellen Crawford, an African-American teen, attempted to enroll at South Gate High School, the closest high school to her home. The Los Angeles Unified School District (LAUSD) refused her request, and directed her to enroll at the more-distant Jordan High School. Jordan’s student body was 99% African-American, while South Gate High's was 98% Caucasian. Crawford's parents filed suit in Los Angeles Superior Court, alleging that LAUSD exercised discriminatory attendance boundary practices...

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A Look Back at the Sylmar Earthquake

This week marks the 47th anniversary of the Sylmar Earthquake. Many details of that difficult time are documented in the Duane Georgeson Papers, held in Special Collections and Archives. Duane Georgeson was a twelve-year veteran of the Los Angeles Department of Water and Power...

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