The Changing Face of the City

Jan. 17, 1907
Los Angeles

On a trip from Utah to visit his daughter, H.E. Gibson keeps getting lost as he wanders around Los Angeles. No, it’s not because Gibson is 80, for his mind is still sharp. It’s because he hasn’t been back since 1848 and things have changed just a bit.

Even the old familiar landmark of Ft. Hill is covered with homes, he says. About the only spot in town he recognizes is the Plaza, where he keeps returning to get his bearings.

Gibson came to California with the “Flash Emigrant Colonyâ€Â to establish Mormon settlements. The group couldn’t raise the money to buy Rancho Cucamonga, so they bought a parcel of land in San Bernardino, The Times says.

Land was “dirt cheapâ€Â in 1848, with entire blocks selling for $500 to $1,000, ($9,910.34-$19,820.69 USD 2005), Gibson said. But instead of becoming a real estate speculator, he left for Utah to bring the news (published in a New York newspaper that came around the Horn) proclaiming that Brigham Young had been appointed governor of the Utah Territory.

Note: Today presented a difficult decision, but I passed on some incredibly offensive caricatures of an African American who had been arrested, accompanied by quotes in dialect: “Ah dunno nothin’ about no stolen chickensâ€Â indeed.

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Los Angeles Celebrates Its Past


July 14, 1907
Los Angeles

Led by the Rev. Juan Caballeria (or Cabelleria), the city is preparing to celebrate its 126th anniversary Aug. 2 with concerts, Mass in the Plaza church and cannon fire. The old artillery piece will be lit by Gen. Jose Aguilar, a former member of the Mexican army who battled the Americans and later joined Gen. John C. Fremont.

Wearing his uniform and sword, Aguilar, who is nearly 100 years old, will fire the cannon when the flags of Spain, Mexico and the United States are raised in the order they appeared over the city. The cannon will also be fired at noon and sunset.

The Times notes that Caballeria has played a crucial role in removing more recent modifications to the old church and is restoring it to the way it appeared in its prime.