Saturday, October 15, 2016

Giving Voice through Art: National Hispanic Heritage Month

Various Artists, Siqueiros: La Voz de la Gente!, Los Angeles, 2012
Courtesy of the Siqueiros Foundation of the Arts

Today, as this year’s annual National Hispanic Heritage Month ends, we pay tribute to the artistic contributions of Hispanic muralists whose work celebrates not only their artistic vision but also public art, community, history and cultural tradition, story-telling, and political and social equality.

Four years ago in Los Angeles, in recognition of the 2012 Latino/Hispanic Heritage Month, a group of muralists decided to create an homage to the iconic Mexican muralist David Alfaro Siqueiros. With a focus on community, the team—Juan Carlos Munoz Hernandez, Raul Gonzalez, Anna Siqueiros, Willie Herrón, and Ernesto de la Loza—assembled over 30 artists to collaborate on the mural’s production.

The mural, La Voz de la Gente! La Resurreción de Cuauhtémoc en las Americas: Homenaje a David Alfaro Siqueiros, honors one of Mexico’s great muralists, David Alfaro Siqueiros. His call to create street art “on the most visible sides of high modern buildings, in the most strategic places in ‘callejones’ in working-class districts, in Union Halls, in public squares, in sports stadia, in open-air theaters,” is lettered in to the 16 x 50-foot mural located in an alley behind 2631½ Cullen Street in Culver City.

La Voz de la Gente! was also reaction to Los Angeles’s Mural Moratorium (2002–2013), which, with its bureaucratic regulations, effectively prohibited the production of new murals and graffiti. Yet, the moratorium was and is not the only source of muting, disrespecting, and rejecting the voices of Los Angeles’ Hispanic muralists and graffiti artists.

Remains of the 1981 East Los Streetscapers’ mural Filling Up on Ancient Energies in Boyle Heights, Los Angeles, May 24, 1988. The mural was destroyed without notifying the artists.
Ushering in the 2017 National Hispanic Heritage Month on September 4 and continuing until January 2018, the California Historical Society and LA Plaza de Cultura y Artes will launch an exhibition devoted to this topic. ¡Murales Rebeldes!: Contested Chicana/o Public Art will look at the way in which Chicana/o murals in the greater Los Angeles area have been contested, challenged, censored, and even destroyed.

This exhibition and its companion publication of the same name are part of the Getty’s Pacific Standard Time: LA/LA. ¡Murales Rebeldes! will examine the iconography, content, and artistic strategies of key Los Angeles-area Chicana/o murals that have made others uncomfortable to the point of provoking a contrary response, delving into the murals’ complicated creation and subsequent disturbing history of denial. Artists Willie Herrón and Ernesto de la Loza—among the co-muralists of La Voz de la Gente!—are featured with muralists Barbara Carrasco, Yriena Cervántez, Roberto Chávez, Sergio O’Cadiz, and East Los Streetscapers in this compelling, critical examination.

Shelly Kale
Publications and Strategic Projects Manager


Thursday, October 13, 2016

Archives Month in Los Angeles: The L.A. Archives Bazaar

Visitors to the Los Angeles Archives Bazaar
Courtesy of LA as Subject

October is California Archives Month, and what better way to link arms with the professionals and institutions that collect, safeguard, and provide access to our state’s history than to attend the 11th Annual Los Angeles Archives Bazaar on October 15?

Since 2004, archives and collectors that tell the story of the Los Angeles region have gathered to promote and exhibit their archives at the Los Angeles Archives Bazaar. A boon for researchers, lay historians, and lovers of Los Angeles, this all-day event is sponsored by the University of California and the archival collective LA as Subject. The event is held at the University of Southern California, LA as Subject’s host organization.

CHS, a member of LA as Subject, enjoys an additional association with USC. At the university’s Department of Special Collections are housed some of CHS’s significant photography collections. This blog tells the story of one of them, the Title Insurance and Trust and C.C. Pierce Photography Collection, 1860-1960 (TICOR/Pierce), available digitally through the USC Digital Library.

Charles Chester Pierce (c. 1853–1946)
Courtesy of Huntington Library, San Marino

Nearly 15,000 historic photographs by the pioneer Los Angeles photographer C. C. Pierce comprise the Title Insurance and Trust Company (TICOR)/Pierce collection documenting the development of the Los Angeles region. Pierce, who arrived in Los Angeles in 1886, recorded the city’s history with his camera until his death in 1946. One of the era’s leading photographers, he sold his collection in 1941 to TICOR. TICOR subsequently donated its “C. C. Pierce Collection of Rare, Historical and Curious Photographs, Illustrating California, the Pacific Coast and the Southwest” in 1977 to the California Historical Society, which housed the collection at CHS’s Los Angeles History Center on Wilshire Boulevard until 1989. CHS then moved the collection to the University of Southern California.

For your archival pleasure, we offer this small but hopefully enticing sample of our TICOR/Pierce collection.

View of Spring Street Looking on to Third Street, c. 1900–1905

Portrait of the Los Angeles Bicycle Champions, c. 1888

Pigeon Ranch Near the Los Angeles River, c. 1900

Movie Production Still of Indians in the Film The Big Trail, c. 1920

The Hollywood Hills, 1926

Fawkes’ Folly, Aerial Trolley Designed by J.W. Fawkes in Burbank, c. 1907–1910

View of the Shore at Santa Monica Taken from the Old Santa Monica Hotel, c. 1885 

Wednesday, October 12, 2016

For Native Americans, History, Like a River, Runs Deep

Contemporary Modoc Memorial, Lava Beds National Monument, 2016
Photo courtesy Alison Moore
The landscape of northern California’s Lava Beds National Monument is stark, arid, beautiful, and complex, befitting both its geologic and human history. Consisting of over 30 separate lava flows—some as old as 2 million years—the rugged area includes great lava fields, lava tube caves, cinder cones, fumaroles, and pit craters. Hiking, even on designated trails, can be a challenge. Jagged basaltic outcroppings can make it difficult to find a footing amidst the cratered terrain.

Lava Beds National Monument, 2016
Photo courtesy Alison Moore
The landscape that trips up modern hikers is also the ancestral territory of the Modoc people, and remains a sacred place for the tribe. During the Modoc War of 1872–73 the most challenging area of this landscape provided haven to a group of Modoc Indians engaged in battle with federal troops. Captain Jack’s Stronghold, one designated area of the monument, is the site of deep natural depressions, rock walls, and lava caves that became temporary homes for about 60 Modoc men and their families seeking escape from the troops during the five-month standoff.
Captain Jack’s Cave, Lava Beds National Monument, 2016
Photo courtesy Alison Moore
In a situation reminiscent of countless tragic clashes between native peoples and encroaching settlers, the Modocs, led by Kintpuash, also known as Captain Jack, returned to their homeland on the shores of Tule Lake after living nearly a decade on a reservation in southern Oregon. In 1872 the government attempted to push them back to the reservation, and when the Modocs refused, the opening battle of the Modoc War ensued. The war came to a bitter end in the spring of 1873 after negotiations between a peace commission and the Modocs failed and a well-known Civil War general, E. S. Canby, was killed, the only general to be killed in the so-called Indian Wars.
Louis H. Heller (Photographer), Captain Jack, 1873
California Historical Society 

Canby’s Cross, Lava Beds National Monument, 2016
Photo courtesy Alison Moore

Ultimately all of those who had escaped capture among the lava beds were arrested, and the leaders, Captain Jack included, were put to death in October of 1873. Years of treaties signed and treaties abrogated leading up to Canby’s murder led to the circumstances that found native peoples strangers in their own lands.
Eadweard Muybridge (Photographer), The Modoc Stronghold after Its Capture, Lava Beds National Monument, 1873
California Historical Society
Recent events in North Dakota near the reservation of the Standing Rock Sioux Tribe mirror the human history at Lava Beds. In a New York Times story on protests over a pipeline seen as encroaching on sacred native lands, residents recall a long history of destruction of their lands and communities, first by their burial under a reservoir and then by excavation for the pipeline:
Verna Bailey stared into the silvery ripples of a man-made lake, looking for the spot where she was born. “Out there,” she said, pointing to the water. “I lived down there with my grandmother and grandfather. We had a community there. Now its all gone.”
History, like a river, runs deep here. And residents like Ms. Bailey say the pipeline battle has dredged up old memories and feelings about lost lands and broken treaties with the United States government, as well as their worries about the future of land and water they hold sacred.

Standing Rock Controversy, North Dakota, 2016
Photo courtesy No Dakota Access
Like North Dakota, the landscape at Lava Beds is intertwined with the lives of the many tribes that called the area home. Petroglyph Point is a large rocky outcropping, or tuff, which arose from the waters of Tule Lake about 275,000 years ago. It gets its name from the numerous native carvings found on the face of the cliff—one of the largest panels of native rock art in the country.
At one time, the waters of Tule Lake surrounded this piece of land and Indians would moor their boats to its base, carving drawings into the rock at the waterline. Between 1904 and 1970 a series of federal irrigation projects reduced Tule Lake to a fraction of its natural size, turning this former island into the landlocked hunk of rock seen below. Water remains a contentious issue in the Klamath Basin today. The drawings remain an enduring symbol of the native community that once thrived here.

(Above) Petroglyph Point, 2016
(Below) Wall on Petrolglyph Point, 2016
Photos courtesy Alison Moore

With Mt. Shasta as a backdrop, and the waters of Tule Lake a haven for birds and other wildlife (it is part of the Pacific Flyway), this was once fertile ground for native people and wildlife alike.
The multiple designations bestowed on the area speak to its complicated past: Lava Beds was designated a National Monument in 1925; a portion of the Monument became a National Wilderness Area on October 13, 1972; and the area became a part of the National Register of Historic Places in 1991. 
This area—at the southern boundary of the Cascades and the edge of the Modoc Plateau - has much to offer wilderness tourists. On a recent June day, visitors had the monument - adorned with wildflowers, grasses, and stunning vistas - nearly to themselves, the ghosts of the past in evidence along the lava-strewn paths.

(Above) Wildflowers, Captain Jack’s Stronghold, Lava Beds National Monument, 2016
(Below) Rock Fortification, Lava Beds National Monument, 2016
Photos courtesy Alison Moore

Today the native peoples of the Klamath Basin speak poignantly of their long spiritual ties to the land of southern Oregon and northern California. As part of the California Historical Society’s current exhibition on the Modoc War and the contemporary native people of the area, a number of tribal members were interviewed by StoryCorps. As some recompense for a long and fraught history with the federal government, the words and voices of the Klamath people now have a permanent home in Washington, D.C. at the Library of Congress.

StoryCorps Gift Bags, 2016
Photo courtesy Alison Moore

Louis H. Heller, Jack’s Family—Lizzy (young wife), Mary (his sister), Old Wife & Daughter, 2016
California Historical Society

Alison Moore
Strategic Initiatives Liaison



Now on View at the California Historical Society

Two exhibitions of Native Americans bridge the past and present.

Native Portraits: Contemporary Tintypes by Ed Drew features portraits of members of the Klamath, Modoc, and Pit River Paiute tribes, some of them descendants of Modoc War survivors. A selection of Modoc War images by Eadweard J. Muybridge and Louis H. Heller from the California Historical Society collection are some of the objects displayed in Sensationalist Portrayal of the Modoc War, 1872–73.

Monday, October 10, 2016

CHS Digitizes Anton Wagner’s Undiscovered Historic Photograph Collection

West Los Angeles Farmland, February 2, 1933
[Farm on Robertson Boulevard North of Hall Road Studio Farm]
Los Angeles: 1932–33 by Anton Wagner, PC 17,
California Historical Society
When my father donated the pictures it was with the wish that they could be accessible to as many people as possible, and now they can.
—Geoff Wagner, 2016

Today the California Historical Society celebrates Digital Archives Day—established by the California State Archives—with the launch of our digital pilot platform featuring the photographic collection “Los Angeles: 1932–33 by Anton Wagner, PC 17.” A cultural geography student from Germany writing his dissertation about metropolitan Los Angeles, Wagner’s 400-plus research photographs document the city’s transformation during the early 1930s. Illustrating the period between the booms of the 1920s and post–World War II, Wagner’s images of Depression-era Los Angeles were selected for CHS’s inaugural digitization project for their innovation and historical value.

Old Chinatown, January 22, 1933
[Chinatown; Marchesault Street, East of Alameda]
Los Angeles: 1932–33 by Anton Wagner, PC 17,
California Historical Society
Unique to the CHS Collection and one of our most important and valuable twentieth-century collections, Wagner’s images have already generated enthusiasm among researchers, historians, and lovers of Los Angeles history:

·         Over the next two years, the California Historical Society, with partner organizations, will explore the relevance of Wagner’s work to the study of American metropolises today and his legacy as a pioneer urban chronicler.
Read more about Anton Wagner on the CHS blog:

Shelly Kale
Publications and Strategic Projects Manager

Friday, October 7, 2016

Modoc Ancestral Run: Celebrating Native Heritage at Lava Beds National Monument

Ed Drew, Modoc Ancestral Run, Lava Beds National Monument, 2014 by © Ed Drew

On October 8, relay runners will wend their way through seventy-five miles of traditional Modoc territory in what is today Lava Beds National Monument. This will be the fifth annual Modoc Ancestral Run, a grassroots event designed to draw people of Modoc and Pitt River ancestry closer to their heritage and to one another. 
The run takes place on land where a small band of Modoc Indians led by a man known as Captain Jack (Kintpuash) made a six-month-long stand against U.S. Government forces through the winter of 1872–73. The Modocs had been living on a reservation in southern Oregon, but conditions there deteriorated and they returned to their homeland on the Lost River near the California-Oregon border. When federal troops attempted to push them back to the reservation, and the Modocs refused, war erupted. A group of about sixty Modoc men and their families retreated to their traditional site of refuge in the lava beds, which became the scene of a series of battles, nearly all of which the Modocs won, despite being outnumbered and out-gunned, by using the landscape to their advantage. 

Eadweard Muybridge, The Lava Beds, 1873
California Historical Society
This 1873 stereograph by Eadweard Muybridge (1830–1904) of the lava beds at Tule Lake on the California-Oregon border shows the topography that was home to a small band of Modoc Indians during the Modoc War—the only major U.S./Indian conflict in present-day California.

For contemporary Modocs, and for descendants of other tribes, the protracted confrontation in the lava beds stands today as a potent example of Indian resistance to the forces of colonization. It is also a powerful symbol of the resilience of their people. The Modoc Ancestral Run honors the bravery and fortitude of those who fought in the Modoc War, and the generations that suffered in its aftermath, but it is also speaks to the vitality of native people today. 

Louis H. Heller, Schonchin and Jack, 1873
California Historical Society
The portraits of imprisoned Modoc warriors by Louis H. Heller (1839–1928)—the first photographer to arrive at the lava beds—were originally published as engravings in Harper’s Weekly in June 1873 as engravings based on his photographs.

Participants will spend the weekend camping at nearby Indian Wells Campground. The run itself will begin Saturday at sunrise and continue through the day. For many of the participants—including tribal elders as well as young children—the weekend spent in the elements and the long relay through the unforgiving terrain of the lava beds will be arduous. This test of endurance will be a sacrifice, but one that connects participants to both the past and to one another.

(Above) Eadweard Muybridge, Gillem’s Camp, Tule Lake, Camp South, from Signal Station, 1873
California Historical Society
(Below) Gillem’s Bluff Bordering the Tule Lake Basin Today, 2013
Courtesy of National Park Service

(Below) Ed Drew, Charlene, 2014
Courtesy of the artist

Erin Garcia
Managing Curator of Exhibitions


Read more about the Modocs and the Modoc War

Boyd Cothran, Remembering the Modoc War: Redemptive Violence and the Making of American Innocence (Chapel Hill: The University of North Carolina Press, 2014)

Cheewa James, Modoc: The Tribe That Wouldn’t Die (Happy Camp, CA: Naturegraph Publishers, 2008)

Peter Palmquist, “Imagemakers of the Modoc War: Louis Heller and Eadweard Muybridge,” Journal of California Anthropology 4, no. 2 (1977)

Jeff C. Riddle, The Indian History of the Modoc War and the Causes That Led to It (San Francisco: Marnell & Company, 1914)

Now on View at the California Historical Society

Two exhibitions of Native Americans bridge the past and present.

Native Portraits: Contemporary Tintypes by Ed Drew features portraits of members of the Klamath, Modoc, and Pit River Paiute tribes, some of them descendants of Modoc War survivors. A selection of Modoc War images by Eadweard J. Muybridge and Louis H. Heller from the California Historical Society collection are some of the objects displayed in Sensationalist Portrayal of the Modoc War, 1872–73.

Thursday, October 6, 2016

Hungry for Communication: The Love Pageant Rally & Michael Bowen

The Grateful Dead playing at the Love Pageant Rally - Photo by Susan Elting Hillyard*

The Summer of Love, known for the nearly 100,000 young people who converged on the Haight Ashbury neighborhood of San Francisco in the Spring and Summer of 1967 may have actually started 50 years ago today on October 6, 1966. As many of the original Haight-Ashbury hippies like to claim, the Summer of Love was the Summer and Fall of 1966. And the Love Pageant rally was a major reason why.
On this day half a century ago, somewhere between 1,000 and 3,000 (estimates continue to vary!) young people swarmed into the Panhandle of Golden Gate Park two blocks North of Haight Street for the “Love Pageant Rally.” The crowds were encouraged to gather in the Panhandle that day by the leaders of the new San Francisco Oracle newspaper to mark the day that the State of California made LSD illegal. The event was a seminal moment for the hippie counterculture that was growing in the neighborhood and directly led to the massive and transformative Human Be-In that took place in Golden Gate Park three months later.
The date (10/6/66) was deliberately chosen as the “666” in the date was meant to conjure the number of the beast in the Book of Revelation. Instead of a standard protest, however, the editors of the Oracle, wanted a ‘celebration of innocence, beauty of the universe…beauty of being.”
The larger-than-expected crowd who attended that day listened to free music provided by the Grateful Dead (see image above) and Big Brother and the Holding Company featuring Janis Joplin (recently brought back to San Francisco by her friend Chet Helms, see image below). Ken Kesey attended the event along with the Merry Pranksters and their famous colorful. “Furthur Bus.” (See video below). The celebration, at the time, was almost certainly the largest free outdoor rock concert in history.
Towards the end of the event, one of the Love Pageant Rally organizers, Beat era poet Michael Bowen, made a chance remark about the power of human beings. That remark soon became a call for “The Human Be-In” that took place in Golden Gate Park a few months later on January 14, 1967. That event,  which drew some 30,000 people to the park's Polo Grounds, and the media’s coverage of it, is widely recognized with creating the nationwide interest in converging on San Francisco in the months to come, thus creating the Summer of Love during the Spring and Summer of 1967.

The Grateful Dead playing at the Love Pageant Rally, with Chet Helms looking on. Photo by Susan Elting Hillyard*

Read more below about Michael Bowen and the Love Pageant Rally

Watch. This. Video (from the Center for Home Movies)! Anything look familiar? The 1960s resonate with contemporary students of history because the time is imminently relatable. It’s highly likely that you will walk by hip kids in San Francisco (or other cities) dressed similarly if not identically to those in the video you (hopefully) just watched. Like those immortalized in celluloid above, American Millennials are also engaged in meaning-making that differs from the previous generation; we’ve inherited less than we’ve been promised, and we’re making due with what we have. Our politicians feel feckless, our soldiers are overseas, and we’re left at home making sense of it all. So we rely on each other within a sharing economy, we socialize in new forums fueled by innovative technologies, and we read blogs that proliferate from the will of the people.

Cohen and Bowen’s San Francisco Oracle / Courtesy of Beat Books

Those blogs owe their existence in part to Allen Cohen’s rainbow dream, the San Francisco Oracle. Cohen’s counterculture commentary motivated many in the 1960s to 'tune in, turn on, and drop out,' but Michael Bowen supplied the radical aesthetics that made the San Francisco Oracle an unrivaled Bay Area leader. Cohen, a native New Yorker, claimed California as his home, but Bowen belonged to the world despite his Beverly Hills birthright. There would have been no Love Pageant Rally without Michael Bowen, and without the Love Pageant there many never have been a Summer of Love and The Oracle would have been much less stimulating.  

Roberto Ayala and Michael Bowen in front of Caffe Trieste in North Beach. / Courtesy of Princeton By The Sea Memories

Michael Bowen was born on December 8, 1937 to society dentist Sterling Bowen and his wife, Grace. His grandmother, Alma Porter, introduced Bowen to metaphysics and modern art as a practicing member of the Theosophical Society in Ojai, California. His mother’s alleged lover, Benjamin (Bugsy) Siegel introduced him to the Vegas Strip and the Sir Francis Drake Hotel in San Francisco. He attended Chouinard Art School and studied with Los Angeles artist Ed Kienholz, working alongside notable artists such as John Altoon at the Ferus and Now Galleries. He moved to San Francisco in the late 1950s, and joined the west coast contingent of the Beat Generation. Living and working from 72 Commercial Street, he befriended a Norwegian physician and arts patron named Reidar Wennesland who heavily collected Bowen’s work in addition to that of his friends; as a result, the North Beach art scene is now very well-represented in the Wennesland Foundation Collection in Kristiansand, Norway.

Love, 1965 by Michael Bowen / Courtesy of Percepticon, San Francisco

Bowen left San Francisco in 1963 and moved into an old Abalone Factory in Princeton-by-the-Sea with a coterie of artists. After many months of painting and entertaining friends like Janis Joplin, he was deeply affected by Aztec spiritualism after traveling in Mexico, and eventually settled in New York City where he found a studio on the Lower East Side and mingled with counterculture heavy-hitters Timothy Leary, Ram Dass and Richard Alpert. He returned to San Francisco in 1966 with an impressive alternative rolodex, and opened a studio and ashram in the Haight-Ashbury district--San Francisco’s newest bohemian neighborhood. He co-founded The San Francisco Oracle with Allen Cohen, and moved the newspaper’s office into his Haight Street shop when he moved to Stinson Beach; there, he would act as host for the inaugural meeting for the Underground Press Syndicate (UPS).

Handbill circulated at The Love Pageant / Courtesy of Rock Posters Collectibles.

The first issue of The Oracle ran “A Prophecy of a Declaration of Independence” on its back page. It read, in part:

We hold these experiences to be self-evident, that all is equal, that the creation endows us with certain unalienable rights, that among these are: the freedom of body, the pursuit of joy, and the expansion of consciousness and that to secure these rights, we the citizens of earth declare our love and compassion for all conflicting hate-carrying men and women of the world. We declare the identity of flesh and consciousness; all reason and law must respect and protect this holy identity.

Like-minded people were asked to translate these beliefs into political action by congregating in Golden Gate Park to “mark the ascension of the beast” on October 6, 1966--the date that LSD was criminalized in California.

Janis Joplin with Big Brother and the Holding Company in Golden Gate Park for the Love Pageant Rally / Courtesy of Janis Joplin Official Site

Between 1,000 to 3,000 people came to Golden Gate Park dressed in gold, bearing instruments, and holding photos of personal saints per The Oracle’s instruction. Participants heard The Grateful Dead perform “Wheel of Fortune” for the very first time; saw a soulful young singer named Janis Joplin play with her new band, Big Brother and the Holding Company; and heard Jerry Rubin and Diggers founder Emmett Grogan speak, among other counterculture notables. Bowen’s personal connections had packed the lineup. After the Love Pageant Rally was over, the conscious masses went to the Psychedelic Shop on Haight, where everything in the store was free in true Diggers fashion, and attended after-parties at The Avalon Ballroom and The Fillmore Auditorium.

Michael Bowen, 1967 / Courtesy of Detroit Artists Workshop

Michael Bowen stood with Allen Cohen on a Panhandle path near Oak and Clayton streets, and they reveled in their success 50 years ago today. Seeing Richard Alpert walk by, Bowen yelled “Isn’t this far out? People are sure hungry for some communicating. They love it. It’s a joyous moment. What do you think, Alpert?” He agreed, and Cohen told Bowen he should do it again. “Yeah,” Bowen replied. “But next time, I’ll bet we could get ten times the people.” Cohen then asked Alpert what they should call their next rally, and Alpert said: “It’s a hell of a gathering. It’s just being. Humans being. Being together.”

“Well,” said Bowen, “we’ll just have another rally. Only bigger. And next time we bring all the tribes together.”

Flower Power, 1967, by Bernie Boston / Courtesy of Wikipedia

Michael Bowen wasn’t as vocal as many of his counterculture brethren, but his impact was equally as visible. Bringing the tribes together was Bowen’s natural talent, and his work as an organizer of the faithful only began with the Love Pageant Rally. His next gathering, The Human Be-In certainly was bigger and was, indeed, a gathering of the tribes...but check back here for more on that later, in the New Year. By 1967, Bowen had graduated from rallies in Golden Gate Park to anti-war marches on the Pentagon in Washington, D.C. That October, he arranged for 200 pounds of daisies to be dropped by aircraft on the Pentagon in the ultimate display of Flower Power as a protest of America’s presence in Vietnam. When that aircraft was preemptively seized by the FBI, Bowen instructed protesters to distribute them on the ground by hand. In that moment, as protesters fought guns with Gerber daisies, photojournalist Bernie Boston took what would become one of the most iconic photos of the 20th-century--transporting Bowen’s aesthetic intuitions far beyond the fields of San Francisco in the process.


* The first two photos in this post were taken by Susan Elting Hillyard. The first features a rare image of the Grateful Dead playing at the Love Pageant Rally, with Jerry Garcia on the left. The second, never before shown publicly, shows the Dead, along with rising Avalon Ballroom rock promoter and Texas friend-of-Janis Joplin, Chet Helms, in the background. 

Hillyard remembers taking the day well. "I was having fun taking photo," she notes.! I think it was at that event that Roger (my husband) got arrested for also taking photos of the cops. He was using my camera so when they were putting him in the cop car, I went over and asked if I could have my camera back and they gave it to me, thereby losing all evidence of what he was doing and being arrested for!"


By Nicole Meldahl

Sources not hyperlinked in text: