Support for LAist comes from
We Explain L.A.
Stay Connected

Share This

Arts and Entertainment

Photos: How L.A. Celebrates Independence Day, From 1873 To Today

LAist relies on your reader support, not paywalls.
Freely accessible local news is vital. Please power our reporters and help keep us independent with a donation today.

Independence Day is almost here in Los Angeles, which means your poor dog is already cowering in a closet somewhere, terrified of the fireworks, and that smell invading your apartment is definitely not a gas leak—it's just your overly enthusiastic neighbor's grill. We've got you covered on firework plans, and the L.A. Times has a serious parade rundown here.

Los Angeles may be a good deal younger than some other parts of the nation (El Pueblo de la Reina de Los Angeles Sobre el Rio de la Porciuncula wasn't founded until 1781, five years after the Declaration of Independence was adopted in 1776), but that doesn't mean we don't have a long history of celebrating the 4th of July. A trip into the USC and Los Angeles Public Library archives turned up photographs of L.A. Independence Day celebrations going all the way back to 1873, the same year the first high school in Los Angeles was built and our first trolley line went into operation. The city's population at the time was a mere 5,728 people. Scroll through the photos above to see how Los Angeles has celebrated over the last century and a half.