The Rise of Los Angeles: From a Big Town to a World-Class City

Discover how Los Angeles became one of America's most modern cities despite its natural deficiencies & lack of essential components associated with city status.

The Rise of Los Angeles: From a Big Town to a World-Class City

The discovery of oil in the 1890s brought rapid growth to the city of Los Angeles, the heart of Southern California. The city was further expanded with the completion of the Los Angeles Aqueduct in 1913, which supplies water from Eastern California. This rise is all the more remarkable considering that the city originally lacked some of the essential components associated with city status, such as a natural harbor. However, it overcame natural deficiencies and established itself as an important center of trade, agriculture, tourism and industry.At the beginning of the 20th century, Los Angeles was considered simply “a big town”.

For more than a century, it has been indelibly associated with a mild climate, a wide range of outdoor leisure and recreation, as well as with the special celebrity aura associated with Hollywood. The lifestyle of Los Angeles residents (who call themselves Angelinos) is based on cars, idealizes single-family housing and favors informality. With notable exceptions, the horizon is mostly horizontal rather than vertical.Los Angeles is a place of extraordinary ethnic and racial diversity, which is largely due to immigration, and, like other cities in the world, reflects a growing divide between rich and poor. Critics refer to it as a quiet land of “la la la la” or, on the contrary, as a place that is reeling from earthquakes, fires, smog, gang wars and riots.

The city's defenders admire its mild climate and geographical variety. They claim that their main social problems are similar to those in all big cities and are perhaps even less serious there than in other places.In fact, some observers consider Los Angeles the most modern and quintessential American city. It has been able to assemble more cars than any other city except Detroit, manufacture more tires than any other city except Akron, Ohio, manufacture more furniture than Grand Rapids, Michigan, and sew more clothes than any other city except New York. Angelenos no longer had to make the bumpy 18 km (11 mile) trip to Sunday Mass at the San Gabriel Mission.Both Biograph and Selig-Polyscope began shooting in Los Angeles in 1910, but that was with the arrival of director Cecil B.

DeMille that Hollywood truly began to take off. Anti-Latino riots in Los Angeles also erupted in a similar way in other cities in California, Texas and Arizona, as well as in cities in the north such as Chicago, Philadelphia and Detroit. An hour after the verdict, protests began in downtown Los Angeles and at the Hansen Dam Recreation Center.Los Angeles continued to expand rapidly throughout the 20th century. In 1787 Governor Pedro Fages laid out his instructions for the Los Angeles People's Body Guard.

He was able to persuade Owens Valley farmers and water companies to unite their interests and transfer water rights over 200,000 acres (800 km) of land to Fred Eaton, Lippencott's agent and former mayor of Los Angeles.In 1998 film City of Angels starring Nicolas Cage and Meg Ryan presented modern Los Angeles as a literal city of angels where seraphic beings protect and interact with mortal humans. More than 1000 miles (1600 km) of roads connected Los Angeles to Hollywood, Pasadena, San Pedro, Long Beach, Venice Beach, Santa Monica, even to Riverside, San Bernardino, Santa Ana and Newport Beach.The origin of Los Angeles' name is still debated today. The easiest and most obvious origin is a direct translation from Spanish which means “The Angels”. Lippencott conducted studies on water in Owens Valley for the Service while secretly receiving a salary from the city of Los Angeles.

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