Los Angeles

Table of contents


            a) Area

            b) Population, Inhabitants

            c) Parts of the city

            d) Languages

            e) Nicknames


            a) Mountains

            b) Rivers

            c) Streets, Roads, Freeways

            d) Climate, Weather


            a) Economy

            b) Tourism

            c) Poverty


            a) Disneyland

            b) Little Tokyo

            c) Hollywood

            d) Universal Studios Hollywood

            e) Walk of Fame

            f) Beverly Hills

            g) Farmers Market

            h) Forest Lawn

            i) Griffith Park

            j) Old Town

            k) Mannīs Chinese Theatre


            a) Where did the name "Los Angeles" come from?

            b) Discovery and settlement

            c) Chronology of the founding of L.A.

            d) Mayors and city councils


            a) Coolio

            b) Leonardo Di Caprio

            c) Richard Pancho Gonzales

            d) Theodore Harold Maiman

            e) Isamu Noguchi

            f) Adlai Stevenson

            g) Michael Tilson Thomas

            h) Earl Warren



a) Area


Los Angeles lies in the south of California.

L.A. county has an area of more than 10 000 square kilometres. L.A. county consists of the city of Los Angeles and about 50 other cities around, for example Beverly Hills, Malibu and Santa Monica.

L.A. county consists altogether of 88 cities.

The heart of Los Angeles is Downtown.

The lowest point is 3 m below sea level at Wilmington, the highest point is 3054 m above sea level on top of Mount San Antonio.

A great part also is desert, for example in the east of Los Angeles there is the Mojave Desert. Two of the most interesting "stations" in the desert are the Joshua Tree Monument and Death Valley.

 b) Population, Inhabitants


The population of the city of Los Angeles is about 3.8 Million, in L.A. county there live about 9.9 Million people.

45 % of these people are Latinos

32 % are Caucasians

9.4 % are Blacks

12.6 % are Asians and Pacific Islanders

c) Parts of the city


The city of Los Angeles is split up into different parts. In general there are 6 areas, and in each of them there are many famous towns, parks and hills.

In the north there is the so called "San Fernando Valley."

Just to name some areas there: North Hollywood, Sun Valley, Sunland

"Westside", the name says it anyway, is in the western part of the city.

It consists of Bel Air, Westwood and West Los Angeles.

The next part of the city is "Downtown/Central": it lies in the east.

Chinatown, Downtown L.A., Griffith Park, Hollywood or Westlake are only a few of the famous areas in this part of the city.

In the southwest of Los Angeles there is the area which is called "Beach/Airport Area".

Here you can find the famous L.A. International Airport (LAX)

"Harbor Area" lies in the south of the city.

Harbor City or San Pedro are some famous areas there.

At last I want to mention the "South Central": itīs in the southeast.

Hyde Park and Jefferson Park are famous and popular areas in the South Central.

d) Languages


Los Angeles is a melting pot of many different cultures and there are also many different languages.

About 42.2 % of the population speak the spanish language

41.1 % speak only English

16.6 % speak other languages, for example Asian and Pacific Island languages

e) Nicknames


There are some positive and negative nicknames of Los Angeles.

The most famous nickname, which we all know, is "L.A."- itīs only a short version of Los Angeles.

Another name is "City of Angels": Los Angeles is a spanish name and it means "The Angels"

Los Angeles is also called "Southland", this name is commonly used by Los Angeles radio and television media.

"Lalaland", "Lotusland" and "Lotusville" are three more nicknames for this city.

Los Angelesis also called the "Double Dubuque", which is a put-down on the city, it was used after World War 2.

The last nickname I want to mention, is "El Pueblo". Itīs the spanish word for "The town". This was the most famous name for Los Angeles during the Spanish period (around 1800)



a) Mountains


Los Angeles county is limited by the Santa Monica Mountains and the Santa Ana Mountains.

The most famous are the San Gabriel mountains. They are in Southern California and they also reach over the Mojave desert, which Iīve mentioned before, and have a length of about 63 miles from west to east.

The highest mountain of this trail is the Mount San Antonio, which is also called Old Baldy, this mountain is 3054 meters high.

b) Rivers


In the city of Los Angeles there are not many rivers, because itīs a very dry area. But to mention the most important ones: There is the Los Angeles River, the San Gabriel River- it flows near the mountains, and the Santa Ana River- it flows also along the Santa Ana Mountains.

But they are not real rivers anyway, because for the most part they are canalized.

c) Streets, Roads, Freeways


The main roads are:

-         Ventura Boulevard: It reaches from east to west and goes through the San Fernando Valley.

-         Sunset Boulevard, Santa Monica Boulevard and Wilshire Boulevard: These are parallel roads. They reach from east to west, go through the city of L.A., along the beaches to the other corner of L.A.

-         Sepulveda Boulevard: It reaches from the north to the south of Los Angeles.

There are also a lot of Freeways in Los Angeles, they are not named, but they are numbered:

-         101 Freeway: It reaches from the north to the south. First, it goes along the coast of North- California, cuts the San Fernando Valley and goes finally to the south of Los Angeles.

-         5 Freeway: It comes also from the north of California and goes through the middle of the state, cuts San Fernando Valley and goes through South- California to the Mexican frontier.

-         405 Freeway: It reaches from north to south. It begins at the northern end of the San Fernando Valley and goes along the beach till southern Los Angeles.

-         10 Freeway: Itīs the main Freeway from the east to the west of Los Angeles. It begins in Santa Monica.

-         1 Freeway: It goes from north to south. It begins in Washington and goes along the beach through California.

d) Climate, Weather


Los Angeles lies in the Subtropical climate-zone. The elimate is characterized by cool to mild winters and warm to hot summers.

The year is divided into a wet and a dry season. The wet months are from October to April, the dry months from May to September.

Rainfall averages only about 300 mm at Los Angeles.

The average temperature in January is about 19° and in July 25°.

The Mojave Desert or Death Valley, which Iīve mentioned before twice, are extremely hot, especially in summer. It rains only 50 mm per year and the average temperature in July lies over 30°.

The record temperature in Los Angeles was recorded there, in Death Valley, there were about 57°.



a) Economy


Los Angeles and economy- the size of its population alone makes this area Californiaīs biggest economic center.

The city is also the financial center for the western United States and a principal importer and exporter of international trade goods.

One of Los Angelesī most famous activities is the television and musical entertainment industry. Many American movies and television programs are produced by local studios.

In 1990 Los Angeles became an important center for multimedia production. The city is also famous for food products, instruments, printed materials, clothing, fabricated metal goods and chemicals.

The L.A. metropolitan is very important for the transportation industry, including automobile, aircraft and aerospace production.

The city became the financial gateway between Asia and the United States of America.

Tourism is an important part of the cityīs economy.

A big problem of Los Angeles is the need to keep the city supplied with water. Only a little part can be taken from the Los Angeles River, but they need other sources of water. The city got water rights in the Owens Valley, it is in Eastern- California.

b) Tourism


Los Angeles is the worldwide capital of entertainment. The city earns a lot of money because of the tourism. It offers theatre, ballett, concerts and much more. Some of the best museums of the United States are in Los Angeles and also many famous restaurants and parks.

Hollywood, located in the north of L.A. county, is the capital of the film industry. Most of the world-famous films and shows are produced there.

The westside of L.A. county constists of very famous cities: Beverly Hills, Century City, Westwood, Brentwood and Bel Air.

In Beverly Hills there is a film and TV museum.

Santa Monica is attractive for tourists, because of its tall and beautiful palms and the small town- atmosphere.

The main beaches are these of Santa Monica and Willen- Rogers. Itīs the oldest tourist center on the westcoast.

The beach- area of Los Angeles is recommendable for every tourist. You can take a sunbath or you can ride your bike or go inlineskating along the Santa Monica Boulevard.

Malibu is a popular center for art- fans, because there you can visit many art- museums.

c) Poverty


These facts are from the year 1999!!

16,3 % (1,6 Mill) of the population in Los Angeles are poor people.

Thatīs very much, compared to the national rate of 11,8 % and a California rate of 13,8 %.

The poverty line is $8500 per year for a single individual and $17000 per year for a family of 4.

These poor people live in 529 000 households.

Most of the poor people live in central Los Angeles, on the South Bay, the San Gabriel, and the San Fernando Valley.

All regions have poverty rates higher than the national and the US metropolitan rates.

The prices for monthly housing are $555 for poor households, but the quality of housing is often not that good, for example there are incomplete kitchens or such things.

Poor households are often overcrowded but if you think intensively about this topic you will find it logical anyway.

A statistic says that most of the poor people work in the low wage sectors, while housing prices continue to rise.

One example: A fulltime worker earns about $ 6,25 (itīs the minimum!!)





a) Disneyland


50 years ago, Walter E. Disney decided to build an amusement park, and it became a great success. He had the idea, that the visitor should get into different dreamworlds.

In 1955 the Disneyland in Anaheim opened. Itīs about 30 km southeastly of Downtown L.A.

Over 60 000 people visit Disneyland daily.

b) Little Tokyo


Little Tokyo is the center of the Japanese- American area, with more than 80 restaurants, lots of interesting shops and Buddhist temples.

c) Hollywood


Hollywood is a city, which was founded by religious farmers in 1900.

Standing 13,6 m tall and 136 m long, itīs the biggest name of the city and a place for tourists.

Itīs THE city of film industry, actors and tourists. Most of the world- famous films and shows are produced there.

d) Universal Studios Hollywood


Universal Studios Hollywood offers rides and attractions inspired by our favourite TV- movies, which you have never seen before.

The Back to the Future flight simulator, Jurassic Park are essential theme park experiences.

Many film studios were built in Burbank, itīs northerly of Hollywood, and there could even be built more bigger studios than in Hollywood.

e) Walk of Fame


There you can see many stars on the ground in which the names of famous people preergraved. Now there are more than 2500 stars.

Itīs very popular, because where else but in Hollywood can you stand on top of such famous people?




f) Beverly Hills


Beverly Hills is the home of many famous film stars and rich people. You can see the most beautiful houses and gardens there. The center of Beverly Hills is the Rodeo Drive- itīs a shopping street, but a very expensive one.

g) Farmers Market


Also this area belongs to Los Angeles. Today, there are around 160 beaches.

You can buy fresh food, take a snack or drink a cup of coffee there. Itīs the most famous place for the freshest food, because in earlier times, farmers came there to sell their food and today itīs the same.

h) Forest Lawn


Forest Lawn is a graveyard, the main attraction is the Great Mausoleum, where famous people like Walt Disney, Clark Gable or Jean Harlow lie.

On this ground there are many churches.

One window in the church Memorial Court of Honor even shows "The last communion"

i) Griffith Park


Itīs a 1600 ha big park in the east of the Santa Monica Mountains. Itīs the USAīs biggest city park.

Here you will find the Los Angeles Zoo with more than 2000 animals.

For those who like sport, there is a lot to see and do in the park.

At different times of the year you can also see American football, ice hockey, horse racing and basketball.

j) Old Town


Old Town is the origin of Los Angeles.

In 1781, 11 families from Mexico founded this city.

The oldest street of the town is Olvera Street, and the oldest house- the Avila Adobe.

The Pico House is now a big hotel. You can also visit the Merced Theatre, the Sepulveda House and the Pelancoli House.

k) Mannīs Chinese Theatre


The Mannīs Chinese Theatre is part of the Hollywood Boulevard. Itīs a Premiere- cinema (Premiere- theatre).

It opened in 1927 with the Premiere of "King of Kings".

In front of the cinema there are hand and footprints of famous



a) Where did the name come from?


The name "Los Angeles" is spanish and means "The Angels". But there is much more to this name, a whole history!

It began on Wednesday, 2nd August, 1769:

Father Juan Crespi, a Franciscan priest was a member of the first European land expedition through California, which was led by Captain Fernando Rivera Y Moncando.

First, they founded a river which they called Nuestra Senora de los Angeles de la Porciuncula. Father Crespi described this river as a "beautiful river from the nothwest located at 34 degrees 10 minutes".

In the Franciscan calendar, 2nd August was the day of the feast of the Perdono at the tiny Assisi chapel of St. Francis of Assisi. Early in St. Franciīs life, the Benedictines had given him this tiny chapel for his use near Assisi. The chapel, ruined and in need of repair was located on what the Italians called a porciuncola or a "very small parcel of land".

Painted on the wall behind the altar was a fresco of the Virgin Mary surrounded by angels. At this time, the chapel was named Saint Mary of the Angels at the little portion.

The newly discovered river was named in honor of this celebration and this chapel.

In 1781 a new settlement was established along that river. The settlement became to be known as El Pueblo de Nuestra Senora la Reina de los Angeles or The town of our Lady the Queen of the Angels of the little portion (river), although its official name was simple El Pueblo de la Reina de los Angeles. (The town of the queen of the Angels.)

By the time, the area became known as the Ciudad de Los Angeles, "City of Angels", and on April 4, 1850 became the City of Los Angeles.

b) Discovery and Settlement (+ 20th century)

When Spanish occupation of California began in 1769, an exploratory of more than 60 persons moved through the area now known as Los Angeles. They camped by a river, which was named El Pueblo de Nuestra Senora la Reina de los Angeles de la Porciuncula, which means The River of our Lady the Queen of the Angels of Porciuncula.

The new governor of California, Felip de Neve, recommended to the viceroy in Mexico that the place suggested by Father Crespi as an ideal place for a mission be developed into a pueblo. King Carlos III of Spain in turn took the recommendation and ordered Governor de Neve to establish the pueblo.

De Neve took the job of establishing the settlement very seriously. He drew up plans for the pueblo, including a plaza, fields, pastures, and royal lands. This surely is the first time a city has been planned before the first settler arrived, and ironic in view of the unfettered growth of Los Angeles.

Persuading settlers to come here from Mexico was another matter. In spite of many inducements, such as money and land, it took months before he was able to get enough settlers, and he had to go to Sonora to get them.

Finally, a group of 11 men, 11 women, and 22 children were gathered together at the Mission San Gabriel. On September 4, 1781, they left San Gabriel, accompanied by de Neve, soldiers, mission priests, and a few Indians to settle the site along the river.

There was a speech by Governor de Neve, a blessing and prayers from the mission fathers -- all watched by the Yang-Na Indians. Thus did El Pueblo de Nuestra Senora la Reina de los Angeles de Porciuncula (The Town of Our Lady the Queen of the Angeles of Porciuncula) come into existence.

The new pueblo grew slowly, and amenities were few. The houses were very small, usually of adobe with flat roofs -- glassless windows, and rawhide doors. The narrow streets were almost impassable when it rained. There were, of course, no sidewalks or lawns, and the trees along the river rapidly disappeared.

By 1790 Los Angeles had 28 households and a population of 139. By 1800 the population was 70 households and a population of 315. There were also a town hall, guardhouse, army barracks, and granaries.

This Spanish town neither knew nor cared that the United States had been born and was already moving relentlessly across the continent.

Over time, the area became known as the Ciudad de Los Angeles, City of Angels, and on 4th April, 1850 became the City Los Angeles.

California was ruled by Spain until 1822 when Mexico assumed jurisdiction. After a two- year period of hostilities with Mexico beginning in 1846, the area came under U.S. control. In 1848 the Treaty of Guadalupe Hidalgo made California a United States territory.

The county of Los Angeles was established on February 18, 1850 as one of the 27 original counties, several months before California was admitted to the Union. It derived its name from the area known as Los Angeles, already a large community, and made it the designated "seat " of County government.

On 1st April, 1850 the people of Los Angeles asserted their newly won right of self- government and elected a three- man Court of Sessions as their first governing body. A total of 377 votes were cast in this election. In 1852 the Legislature dissolved the Court of Sessions and created a five- member Board of Supervisiors. In 1913 the citizens of Los Angeles County approved a charter recommended by a board of freeholders which gave the county greater freedom to govern itself within the framework of state law.


Many famous cities became unique by the time, and also Los Angeles was one of them.

There is no American city which has evolved so rapidly in the span of a century as has Los Angeles.That fact makes this city truly unique.

In 1900 Los Angeles had a population of 102 479, while the county totaled only 170 298. In 1900 Los Angeles ranked 36th in size in the nation, behind Omaha, Nebraska, but ahead of Memphis, Tennessee.

In contrast, Los Angeles began the millennium with a population of          3 831 754, the second largest city in the United States, with the county numbering 9 828 861.

Today, Los Angeles is the seventh largest city in the world, being surpassed by Tokyo, Mexico City, San Paulo, New York City, Bombay and Shanghai, but itīs larger than Calcutta, Buenos Aires, Seoul, Osaka, Lagos, Rio, New Delhi and all European capitals.

And here are the explanations for the extraordinary rising of the city in the last century: First, the cityīs geographic and geological setting, second, the extraordinary influence of technological innovation. Third, the major role played by the federal Government in the development of urban cities, Los Angeles amongst them. Fourth, the evolution of local politics. Last, the cityīs inhabitants, the human factor.




a) Coolio (Rap Artist)


Coolio was born in Los Angeles on 8th January 1963.

His lyrics express ideas about family, respect, love, Aids and revolution.

After getting his start in the South Central Los Angeles rap scene during the early 1980s, he signed with Tommy Boy Records (1993). The debut release, It Takes a Thief (1994), went platinum. His song " Gangsta's Paradise," was the best-selling single of 1995 and won him a Grammy Award for Best Rap Solo Performance. In 1997 he released My Soul (1997). He has six children, two with wife Josefa Salinas, whom he married in 1996.

b) Leonardo Di Caprio (Actor)

Leonardo Wilhelm Dicaprio was born to George and Irmalin DiCaprio on November 11, 1974 in Los Angeles, California. He grew up in Los Feliz, California, which Leo describes as "the ghettos of California". He is an onlychild, though he has a step brother named Adam. His parents divorced each other within a year after he was born. Leonardo gets his Italian background from his father George, who produces underground comic books and comicarts out of his garage. George now helps Leo sift through the many scripts and discarding all of the mainstream roles that most actors take to gain quickfame. Leo prefers the darker more challenging roles. He gets his German background from his Mother Irmalin who was a legal secretary until she began managing her son's rising career. Leo was educated at the Centre fo Enriched Studies and John Marshall High, both located in Los Angeles. He did not likes chool, and often cheated. He was more interested in entertaining his classmates than doing work. His raucous behavior often got him in trouble. He was kicked off the set of Romper Room at age 5 for is uncontrolable behavior. But his troubles with school didn't stifle his aspiration to be an actor. He appeared in over 30 commercials, the first being Matchbox Cars, and at 14 years old he was finally signed. He was dicouraged, however, when his agent told him his name was too long and ethnic sounding (his Mother named him Leonardo after he swiftly kicked inside the womb while she was looking at a DaVinci painting in La Louvre in Paris) and suggested he change his name to Lenny Williams. Leonardo refused. He did many educational films such as "How to Deal With Parents Who Take Drugs", and "Mickey's Safety Club", and appeared in many TV shows like Lassie and The Outsiders. He landed his first screen role in 1991 on Critters III (though he'd like to forget that). At 16,Leo landed the role as a homeless boy named Luke on the last two seasons of Growing Pains. Finally, Leo got his big break in the "coming of age movie This Boy's Life as Tobias Wolf, opposite Robert DeNiro. Now, at 23, LeonardoDiCaprio has earned his fame. Has completed over 11 motion pictures, including "What's Eating Gilbert Grape" (for which he recieved an Oscarnomination for Best-Supporting Actor. The Basketball Diaries, The Quick and the Dead, William Shakespeare's Romeo and Juliet, Marvin's Room and the blockbuster Titanic. Titanic has already grossed over $6 million worldwide, and has boosted Leo's popularity to the top. Looking at all the different roles Leo has portrayed over the years shows his great capability of playing many different kinds of roles and his natural acting skills. He knows how to bring emotion and reality to his roles, and has touched the hearts of millions of people all over the world.

c) Richard Pancho Gonzales (Tennis Player)

He was born on 9th May, 1928 in Los Angeles.                                             When Gonzales was twelve years old, his mother gave him a fifty-cent tennis racket for Christmas to discourage him from playing rougher sports. At fourteen, he was playing and frequently winning junior tournaments.

Gonzales quit school in the tenth grade and joined the Navy as soon as he was old enough, in 1945. He was discharged in 1947 and less than a year later became the second youngest player ever to win the national singles title.

Some thought his championship was tainted because defending champion Ted Schroeder didn't play in the 1948 tournament, but Gonzales beat him in the 1949 final. After losing the first two sets, Gonzales won the last three. He also won the 1949 Wimbledon singles championship.

Gonzales then turned professional, joining Jack Kramer on a nationwide tour. He played badly, losing 96 matches while winning only 27, and was dropped in favor of Pancho Segura. After Kramer's retirement, Gonzales rejoined the pro tour in 1954 and during the next eight years he consistently beat the best professionals around, including Lew Hoad, Ken Rosewall, Frank Sedgman, Segura, and Tony Trabert. The 6-foot-3 Gonzales was especially noted for his great serve, which was once clocked at 112 mph.

After retiring from competition, Gonzales became a top instructor and non-playing captain of the Davis Cup team. He had one last moment in the spotlight, though. In the 1969 Wimbledon tournament, which had been opened to professionals, the 41-year-old Gonzales beat 25-year-old Charles Pasarell in a 112-game match that lasted 5 hours and 12 minutes, the longest in Wimbledon history.

d) Theodore Harold Maiman (Inventor)

He was born in Los Angeles in 1927. He is a US- physics who constructed the first working laser in 1960.

Maiman was born in Los Angeles and studied at Columbia and Stanford universities. From 1955 to 1961 he worked at the Hughes Research Laboratories. In 1962 he founded the Korad Corporation to manufacture lasers; in 1968 he founded Maiman Associates, a laser and optics consultancy; he cofounded the Laser Video Corporation 1972. In 1975 he joined the TRW Electronics Company, Los Angeles.
In 1955, Maiman began improving the maser (microwave amplifier), first designed in 1953 by US physicist Charles Townes. Townes had also demonstrated the theoretical possibility of constructing an optical maser, or laser, but Maiman was the first to build one. His laser consisted of a cylindrical, synthetic ruby crystal with parallel, mirror-coated ends, the coating at one end being semitransparent to allow the emission of the laser beam. A burst of intense white light stimulated the chromium atoms in the ruby to emit noncoherent red light. This red light was then reflected back and forth by the mirrored ends until eventually some of the light emerged as an intense beam of coherent red light - laser light. Maiman's apparatus produced pulses; the first continuous-beam laser was made in 1961 at the Bell Telephone Laboratories.

e) Isamu Noguchi (Sculptor)

Isamu Noguchi was born November 17, 1904, in Los Angeles. His Japanese father was a poet and his mother an American writer. In 1906, the family moved to Japan. He was sent to Indiana for schooling in 1918, and in 1922 he apprenticed to the sculptor Gutzon Borglum in Connecticut. For the next two years, he was a premedical student at Columbia University, New York, and took sculpture classes at the Leonardo da Vinci School, also in New York. Noguchi decided to become an artist and left Columbia in 1925. A John Simon Guggenheim Memorial Foundation fellowship in 1927 enabled him to go to Paris, where he worked as Constantin Brancusi's studio assistant. In Paris, he became friendly with Alexander Calder, Stuart Davis, and Jules Pascin. Noguchi returned to New York in 1928 and the following year showed abstract sculpture in his first solo show at the Eugene Schoen Gallery.

In 1930, Noguchi traveled in Europe and Asia, studying calligraphy in China and pottery in Japan. In New York during the early 1930s, he associated with Arshile Gorky, John Graham, Chaim Gross, and Moses and Raphael Soyer and introduced social content into his work. He began to design playgrounds, furniture, and theater decor, executing the first of numerous sets for Martha Graham. Noguchi spent six months in 1941-42 in a Japanese-American relocation camp. In 1949, he was given a solo show at the Egan Gallery, New York. In Japan in 1950-51, he designed gardens, bridges, and monuments and developed his paper lanterns (akari). He showed at the Stable Gallery, New York, in 1954 and 1959.

In 1961, Noguchi moved to Long Island City. Noguchi's first solo exhibition in Paris was held at the Galerie Claude Bernard in 1964. The Whitney Museum of American Art, New York, honored him with a major retrospective in 1968. Throughout the 1970s, Noguchi continued to make large outdoor sculpture and fountains. A comprehensive show of his sculpture, theater sets, and environmental works took place in 1978 at the Walker Art Center, Minneapolis. Noguchi lived in New York and spent part of each year in Japan. He died in 1988 in New York City.


f) Adlai Stevenson (Governor)

He was born in 1900 and died in 1965.                                                             Stevenson, a leading Democrat of the 1950s, was famed for his quick wit and deep intellect and for his eloquence in support of liberal causes. (Those same qualities led detractors to nickname him the Egghead.) He was the Democratic candidate for president in 1952 and 1956, losing badly both times to Dwight Eisenhower. Stevenson was governor of Illinois from 1949-53 and served as the American ambassador to the United Nations during the John Kennedy administration. Stevenson's son, Adlai III, later was a U.S. senator from Illinois (1970-81).

g) Michael Tilson Thomas (Conductor & Composer)

Born in Los Angeles on 21 December 1944, Michael Tilson Thomas is the third generation of his family to follow an artistic career. Internationally acclaimed as both conductor and composer, Tilson Thomas composes in a colorful, eclectic style that reflects his passion for the diversity of American musical life. He began his formal studies at the University of Southern California where he studied piano with John Crown and conducting and composition with Ingolf Dahl. At age 19, he was named Music Director of the Young Musicians Foundation Debut Orchestra. In 1969, after winning the Koussevitzky Prize at Tanglewood, Tilson Thomas was appointed Assistant Conductor of the Boston Symphony Orchestra. He has served as Principal Guest Conductor of the Los Angeles Philharmonic, Principal Conductor of the Great Woods Festival and Principal Conductor of the London Symphony Orchestra.

Tilson Thomas began his tenure in September 1995 as the San Francisco Symphony's 11th Music Director in a contract that extends through the year 2005. He and the orchestra have also signed an exclusive contract with BMG Classics/RCA Victor Red Seal which will yield 15 recordings over the next five years. He is also the Founder and Artistic Director of the New World Symphony.

Tilson Thomas is one of the busiest conductors on the international scene, but, throughout his career, he has devoted considerable time to composing. His From the Diary of Anne Frank, for narrator and orchestra, was commissioned by UNICEF and given its world premiere at Philadelphia's Academy of Music in 1990 by the late Audrey Hepburn and the New World Symphony, conducted by the composer. Since then the work has been played by the London Symphony Orchestra, televised throughout Japan in a new Japanese translation, played by the Israel Philharmonic in a Hebrew version, performed in Holland in the original Dutch, in South Africa, in Spain by the Orquestra Simfonica de Barcelona, at the Ravinia and Aspen Music Festivals and throughout the United States.

Tilson Thomas was commissioned by the city of Hiroshima to compose a piece for the commemoration of the 50th anniversary of the bombing of that city. Shówa/Shoáh, a work for orchestra, is the result. It was premiered on 6 August 1995 by the Pacific Music Festival Orchestra, and will become part of the composer's First Symphony. Agnegram is the composer's short (4') 90th birthday orchestral tribute to longtime San Francisco Symphony patron Agnes Albert. Described as buoyant and exuberant with shades of Stravinsky, Walton, Bernstein, and Spike Jones, Agnegram was premiered by the San Francisco Symphony on 14 May 1998.

Other compositions include Three Poems by Walt Whitman for baritone and orchestra; Five Songs, for voice and piano; We Two Boys Together Clinging, recorded by baritone Thomas Hampson and pianist Craig Rutenberg for EMI; Street Song, written for the Empire Brass Quintet and also available in a version for symphonic brass. A song cycle on Emily Dickinson's poems for Reneé Fleming, was premiered by the San Francisco Symphony in February 2002, and the soprano will perform the voice and piano version on an upcoming tour. Urban Legend, for contrabassoon and orchestra, will receive its premiere by the San Francisco Symphony in October 2002.

h) Earl Warren (Lawyer)

A native of Los Angeles, Earl Warren was born in 1891. He studied law and after service in the U.S. Army he became City Attorney for the city of Oakland. He then served as Deputy District Attorney and ultimately District Attorney for the County of Alameda. In that position he became known for his brilliant and tenacious investigative skills. Warren was elected Governor in 1943, and re-elected twice. Although he was a Republican, he made his political appointments based on merit rather than on political loyalties. As Governor, Warren became more and more concerned with social justice. During WWII, however, he supported internment of Japanese-Americans, a position which he came to regret deeply in his later years. In 1953, President Eisenhower appointed Warren Chief Justice of the Supreme Court. Warren died in 1974.





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