L.A. Celebrates the Fourth of July


July 4, 1944: Uncle Sam in a cartoon by Edmund Waller “Ted” Gale for the Los Angeles Examiner and republished in the Milwaukee Sentinel.


Here’s a look at how Los Angeles has celebrated Independence Day over the years.


The 19th Century

Los Angeles celebrates the Fourth of July with pic-nics and fire-works, 1863.


“Coursing,” a form of wagering on greyhounds that are released to catch a live rabbit (a practice that is now illegal), is conducted at what is now Exposition Park, Fourth of July 1889.


A parade and fireworks on  the Fourth of July, 1889



Downtown decorations, Fourth of July, 1889 

A Fourth of July band concert, 1899

The 20th Century


Ocean Park Bathhouse opens on the Fourth of July, 1905





Los Angeles celebrates with cricket matches and a bagpipe contest,  on the Fourth of July, 1907.



The Fourth of July, 1910, prizefight between Jack Johnson and Jim Jeffries touches off race riots.

More on “The Fight of the Century” between Jack Johnson and James J. “Jim” Jeffries.

Speeches in Spanish and Italian on the Fourth of July, 1910

The Los Angeles streetcar system is struggles to deal with the large number of people going to the beach on the Fourth of July, 1910

D.W. Griffith’s “Hearts of the World” is playing in Los Angeles, on the Fourth of July, 1918.


Saucers over L.A. just before the Fourth of July, 1947!




Radio reporter Lew Irwin reports on police brutality against African Americans, the Fourth of July, 1957.

Intoxicated movie star Gail Russell plows into the front of Jan’s Restaurant on the the Fourth of July, 1957

Times readers are encouraged to drive safely on the Fourth of July, 1957

Mirror columnist Paul Coates on the Fourth of July, 1959

June 26, 1960, Venice Protest

The Venice beatniks plan to protest an ordinance against being on the beach between midnight and 6 a.m. Minor problem: There is no such ordinance, police say. The Fourth of July, 1960

About lmharnisch

I am retired from the Los Angeles Times
This entry was posted in 1863, 1907, 1910, 1947, 1957, 1960 and tagged . Bookmark the permalink.

2 Responses to L.A. Celebrates the Fourth of July

  1. Pingback: L.A. Celebrates the Fourth of July — | Hinges of History

  2. Benito says:

    Sure do miss that bongo playing, wine drinking crowd, Daddy-O!


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