After 150 Years, Is L.A. Ready to Remember the Chinese Massacre?

Long Buried, the Bloodiest Night in the City’s History Surfaces Amid a New Wave of Violence

It’s hard to tell a city’s story. In many cities, there’s a tension between pointing with pride and bowing in shame.

Los Angeles—where I have lived and worked for most of my life, including my years as an elected official—has long preferred the civic booster side of its identity, promoting itself as a city of the future. But L.A. also struggles to face the dark, violent, and racist episodes in its past.

One of the bloodiest nights in Los Angeles history took place 150 years ago, on October 24, 1871, when at …

Unearthing L.A.’s Improvised Past

In a City That Constantly Builds Over Itself, You Can Still Find the Last Century in Certain Light and Certain Pockets

by Lynell George

For some time now, I’ve been thinking and talking about Los Angeles in the past tense. Not in a nostalgic way—rather, my memory of place had become an …

My Supermarket Doesn’t Love Me

Grocery Stores Are in My Blood, Which Is Why I Was Crushed by the Changes at My Ralphs in Sherman Oaks

I have a life-long affinity for markets. Before I was born and then when I was a small child, mom-and-pop grocery stores supported all my relatives. My paternal grandfather owned …

The Murder That Made Us Celebrity-Obsessed

In 1922, the Mysterious Death of Director William Desmond Taylor Sparked America's Hunger for Scandal

I was 9 years old when I first learned about the murder of 1920s movie director William Desmond Taylor. Taylor’s killing was one of several scandals—others included the “Fatty” Arbuckle …

Griffith Park Taught Me to Love Life in L.A.

Its Hills Are Plagued by Forest Fires. The Traffic on Weekends Is Brutal. And Forget Teaching Your Kid to Ride a Bike There. But Otherwise, It's Sublime.

If there’s anything in Los Angeles that remains inexpensive and underrated, it’s Griffith Park.

I’ve experienced a few area codes around here. After growing up in the 818, high schooling …

L.A., Where the World Convalesces

Today, It’s Chinese Health Tourists. A Century Ago, It Was American Consumptives Coming for the Sunshine.

The historical record is full of such stories: He moved to Los Angeles “for health reasons.” She relocated to Southern California “for her health.” Booster rhymes of the late 19th …