WAHA E-News 8-18-08

Evening Stroll, WED, Aug 20, and more! The Lazy Days of August? We think not! This week, have a cuppa joe on WAHA, stroll through one historic neighborhood, party in another, and visit a grand mansion unveiling a complete makeover. And don't forget to reserve your spot at WAHA's annual Living History Tour.



Wednesday, August 20
6:30-8 p.m.
The Espresso Cart will be placed at 1915 Virginia Road

Please join WAHA on an Evening Stroll through Wellington Square, which is located just south of Washington and west of Crenshaw Boulevards. Wellington Square was first laid out in 1913 but grew up in the 1920s, and today its gracious blocks are filled with many Spanish, Tudor, Norman and other Revival styles of the period, along with some examples of earlier Craftsman homes.

As you walk through these tree-lined streets, you'll discover a residence that was home to Dorothy Donegan, considered one of America's top jazz musicians, and the longtime home of another musical legend, Evelyn Freeman Roberts, and her husband, Tommy Roberts, the co-founders of the Young Saints Scholarship Foundation.

Along with these performers' homes, you'll see current and former homes of actor and comedian Nick Stewart, who played "Lightnin'" on the "Amos 'n' Andy" TV series and was the founder of the Ebony Showcase Theater, and basketball star Lucius Allen, a member of a famed UCLA Bruins team and former Lakers guard. From an earlier era, you'll also discover the home of Norman Ives, a decorated Civil War soldier who later settled in Los Angeles.

Hollywood has come calling many times in Wellington Square, including this summer: on your stroll you'll see a home recently used for a new NBC TV series, "My Own Worst Enemy," starring Christian Slater.

The Espresso cart will be placed in front of the "Hardman Residence," a striking Spanish Colonial home at 1915 Virginia Road, just off of Washington Boulevard. Neighborhood homes can only be viewed from the outside -- no open houses.

The Stroll is from 6:30 to 8 p.m. Coffee drinks are free to the first 50 "customers." We will have a walking tour brochure and map available for you at the Espresso cart, starting about 6 p.m. Say hello to neighbors, meet new friends, bring out your (leashed) dogs for a walk, and get a close-up look at this wonderful neighborhood.


Country Club Park's Annual Neighborhood Street Festival Saturday, August 23
12 to 4 p.m.
West 12th Street, between Westchester Place and 3rd Avenue (Country Club Park)

Everyone is invited to the Country Club Park Neighborhood Association's Third Annual Street Festival. There will be live music and fun for all, including face painting for kids, henna artistry for young and old alike, a rock climbing wall, train rides, and so much more. Community organizations (including WAHA) will have booths there as well. Admission is free, and vendors will have food for sale. Country Club Park is providing funds for its historic resources survey, so that it can become one of the West Adams area's newest HPOZs. This annual festival is one of the ways the neighborhood both raises funds and raises awareness about the importance of historic preservation. Please do come support their efforts -- and have fun, too!


Saturday, August 23
11 a.m. to 3 p.m.
3726 West Adams Blvd. (between Arlington and Crenshaw)

One of Historic West Adams' most impressive landmarks has undergone a four-year picture-perfect restoration, and now WAHA members are invited to a special open house at the MacGowan Residence hosted by the Movement of Spiritual Inner Awareness on Saturday, August 23. Light refreshments will be served.

Important note
This is NOT a WAHA-sponsored event NOR an open invitation, and RSVPs are politely requested; our hosts really need to know the numbers. Contact via e-mail only WAHAholiday@aol.com to put your name on the list.

The MacGowan Residence, Los Angeles Historic Cultural Monument No. 479, was designed by architects Hudson and Munsell and erected in 1912. It has received a California Preservation Foundation 2008 Design Award for Restoration. The project team included Drisko Studio Architects, Paul W. Speer Construction, landscape architect Katherine Spitz & Associates, structura engineer Melvyn Green & Associates, and architectural conservator Griswold Conservation Associates LLC, among many other restoration/preservation specialists. WAHA's own Martin Eli Weil, architect, served as a historic preservation consultant, along with Historic Resources Group.


Saturday, September 27

WAHA presents the 18th annual Living History Tour, with costumed actors, at graveside, portraying true personages in one of the City's oldest and most significant cemeteries. Tour visitors will meet:

  • * Monroe Salisbury - Leading man of silent film era Northwoods dramas

  • * Edward Lee Baker, Jr. - Buffalo Soldier and Medal of Honor recipient for heroism in the Spanish American War

  • * Rev. Asahel (A.M.) Hough - "Argonaut of the Spirit," Methodist leader, and co-founder of the University of Southern California

  • * Ernestine Wade - Radio and television actress best known as "Sapphire" on "Amos 'N' Andy"

  • * Valentine Wolfenstein - Pioneer photographer of the Navajo Captivity, he then owned a portrait studio in 1870s Los Angeles

  • * Francisca Alexander Fleming - Queen of La Fiesta de Los Angeles, 1897
by reservation only. Docent-led tours depart every 25 minutes, from 9 a.m. to Noon. Tour visitors are assigned times/groups in advance.

$25 general admission, $20 WAHA members (children under 10 free). After September 15, all tickets are $30

To secure your spot, you may utilize the postcard/reply card that you received in the mail, or download a reservation form from the WAHA website, www.WestAdamsHeritage.org. Fill out your tour time preference(s) and send a check made out to WAHA to:

WAHA Angelus Rosedale Living History Tour,
2209 Virginia Rd Los Angeles, CA 90016

Angelus Rosedale Cemetery is located in Historic West Adams at 1831 W. Washington Blvd. This is a 2-3 hour walking tour over uneven terrain; please dress accordingly. More information: 323-732-4223, tours@westadamsheritage.org, or visit www.WestAdamsHeritage.org.

Of course, volunteer help is always welcome! If you would like to serve on the Living History Tour Committee, or volunteer on the day of event, please contact Laura Meyers at lauramink@aol.com. We are looking for help with logistics, costuming, actor assistance at the cemetery during the tour, and with the Volunteers Party, among other tasks.


We welcome your contributions to the WAHA E-News and West Adams Heritage Association's monthly publication, "West Adams Matters." Please understand that we do have deadlines. Material for the print newsletter should be submitted no later than the 1st of the prior month (i.e.: April 1 for the May issue). If your event is scheduled for early in a month, we suggest you request coverage for the prior month (i.e.: May issue for a June 3 event), because it's entirely possible that not all of our members will have received their newsletter by then (we do try hard.) We reserve the right to edit submitted material. For the WAHA E-News, we prefer to only send it out once or twice a month. Please don't wait until two days before an event to let us know about it. It may not be sent out.

If you suddenly hear of an important city hearing or other public meeting that is important to West Adams, we will endeavor to send out a special bulletin.

Submit your material to Laura Meyers, editor, lauramink@aol.com.