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Peek in the Stacks: urban archives

On the Eve of Suffrage: The Philanthropic and Educational Work of the Reseda Woman's Club, 1918-1920

On May 2, 1918 a local newspaper announced the organization of the Mother's Club of Marian, noting the Club’s purpose was "to be of patriotic service, to become a center for broader social life, and to work unitedly for the advancement of both school and community." Marian would later change its name...

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Maps of Greater Los Angeles

Special Collections and Archives has a wide variety of maps, many of which are part of archival collections. To understand maps, we must understand their meaning and sometimes their intended use. The maps selected here demonstrate how different areas of greater Los Angeles have developed over the years. Some maps demonstrate changes in demographics, while others illustrate various infrastructure projects that have been in the works over time, creating new neighborhoods, freeways, parks, commercial, and residential areas. Some maps are magnifications of specific areas, while others contain broader information that reveals...

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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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Quirky and Curious Calendars

Many people enjoy the yearly ritual of choosing a calendar, date book, or planner in which to note their daily activities. These seemingly innocuous notes and scribbles can sometimes reveal interesting details about people's interests, social and professional lives, priorities and goals, or other personal details...

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The Canoga Park High School Collection

Canoga Park High School is one of the oldest high school in the San Fernando Valley. The school first opened as Owensmouth High on October 4th, 1914 with three teachers and fourteen students. In 1931, the school's name was changed after the town of Owensmouth became known as Canoga Park. The Canoga Park High School Collection consists of...

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The Retail Clerks Union Local 770 Scrapbook Collection

The Retail Clerks Union Local 770 Scrapbook Collection explores the organization's activities beginning in 1942 through 1959. Local 770 worked to secure rights, negotiate wages, resolve contract disagreements for California-based retail employees and actively supported women’s rights, fair pay for minorities, labor legislation, and general employment concerns of the surrounding community...

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The Development of CSUN’s Ethnic Studies Programs

California State University of Northridge (CSUN), a very diverse university, developed some of the very first ethnic studies courses in the nation and has the one of the largest ethnic studies programs in the CSU system. Although many students and faculty today appreciate the required ...

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The Mimi Melnick Collection

The Mimi Melnick Collection documents Mimi Melnick's personal and professional life, most significantly her influence over the emergence of jazz as a legitimate area of academic study and her role in the development and promotion of jazz in the Los Angeles area between 1958 ...

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