On the last Sunday of each month , LAVA welcomes interested individuals to gather in downtown Los Angeles (noon-2pm), for a loosely structured conversational Salon featuring short presentations and opportunities to meet and connect with one another.
At the March 2014 Salon, Tom Sitton talked about his book The Courthouse Crowd: Los Angeles County and its Government, 1850-1950.
ABOUT THE PRESENTATION: In its first century of existence, beginning in 1850, Los Angeles County government evolved from a frontier institution with only a few constituents, a meager treasury and few duties, to an early American “urban county” and an innovator in local government at this level. The issues faced by the county’s leadership in the form of the Board of Supervisors had a profound effect on the economy and quality of life in what would become the most populous county in the nation. Many of these challenges, as examined in The Courthouse Crowd: Los Angeles County and its Government, 1850-1950, would persist in the post-World War II era and are still apparent today. In his presentation, author Tom Sitton discusses a few of these issues and some of the increasingly powerful Supervisors who faced them, share a colorful “rogues’ gallery” of some of the most corrupt politicians in the region’s history, and describe how the book was written.