Tag Archives: California

Hearts on their Sleeves–The Terno in Los Angeles

In what contexts do immigrants wear their native dress?  For Filipina women, the most distinctive item of clothing is the terno—a dress or set of matching separates with a much extended, wing-like upper sleeve, as seen in the picture above. … Continue reading

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Anna May Wong, Aging

By now, everyone must have heard that Chinese American actress Anna May Wong has earned a place on American quarters.  Key elements of her famous look, including the bangs and high eyebrows, remained with her as she aged.  The photo … Continue reading

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Barbara Carrasco’s Censored Mural

California has the reputation of a progressive blue state, but that hasn’t always been the case.  As recently as 1981, the Los Angeles Community Rehabilitation Agency commissioned mural artist Barbara Carrasco to create a work to commemorate the 200th anniversary … Continue reading

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Felipe Family Women, 1979

In family photos that span the generations you can often see how women hold on to styles that make them feel comfortable, regardless of current trends.  In this photograph of a Mexican American family in Corona, California, the three older … Continue reading

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Dancing at the Senior Center, 1980

When did older women decide to give up dresses and turn to pants as their basic mode of dress?  The answer surely depends in part on location.  The City of Commerce, where this photo was taken, is in Southern California … Continue reading

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Joshua Tree, 1940

Those strange shaggy bushes in the background are Joshua Trees, native to the Mojave Desert.  According to the writing on the back, this photo was taken in Joshua Tree, California in 1940s.  In those days, the plants were plentiful.  Rising … Continue reading

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Sunkist Group Photo in Orange, 1961

The city of Orange–located in Orange County, California–is named after citrus. When I grew up in the fifties, there were still orange groves everywhere. No surprise that the major citrus company, Sunkist, had a big packing plant there. Today the … Continue reading

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The Black Women of California’s Central Valley

During the Great Depression, when waves of migrants came to California to escape the drought, Black cotton farmers were part of the population transfer.  Some were recruited by California cotton growers, while others came on their own. More migrated after … Continue reading

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New Year’s Eve, 1948

As much as I love New Year’s Eve, I don’t think I’ve ever had a much fun as gossip columnist Hedda Hopper was having at this 1948 party. Now there is a big laugh!  This photo is part of a … Continue reading

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A Southern California Thanksgiving, 1906

Why is this family eating outside on Thanksgiving, you might ask.  Late November can be hot in Southern California, as the Santa Ana winds sweep in from the desert.  As I write on this Thanksgiving over 100 years later, the … Continue reading

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