Olvera - The first street of Los Angeles

Trip Start Sep 09, 2008
Trip End Sep 12, 2008

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Flag of United States  , California
Wednesday, September 10, 2008

The oldest existing house in Los Angeles was built on Olvera Street about 1818 by Don Francisco Avila. It was occupied briefly as American headquarters in 1847. Severely damaged in the earthquake of 1971 the house is now restored as an example of California life style of the 1840's.

Now Alvera street has eateries and art stores on both sides of one block, with what feels very much like state fair booths running down the middle of the street which has been designated as "Little Mexico". Most of the items are straight from the border but at twice the price, however the clothing seemed better made and all of the art was just a little nicer (and more expensive) than I am use to seeing in Mexico as if the buyers took the time to choose the "best of" what was available.


There was also art from Southern Mexico including Aztec art and costumes and whole sections of several little shops and stalls were devoted to "Day of the Dead" Art. A Mexican holliday held each year on November 2nd where everyone goes to the cemeteries and cleans them up, have special feast celebrating their dead relatives.


The "Day of the Dead" art is a little interesting, revolving around brightly painted and decorated skelitons . . .my kind of holliday if I do say so myself! Being a geneologist and having spent a bit of time roaming in old cemeteries, a few of them could have used some relatives doing some weeding and sweeping the paths.

At the end of the block is a Mission and a park where this huge old tree was decorated and there was live Mexican music at night where there were people sitting around listening and a few couples were dancing.

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