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Los Angeles, California

Obscura Society LA: Private Tour of Downtown LA's Lost Financial District

Join Obscura Society LA as we discover how Spring Street became known as the "Wall Street of the West"

Everyone knows that Los Angeles is the entertainment capital of the world, but did you know that LA's financial district was once called the "Wall Street of the West"? 

A long time ago, Los Angeles was a dry, desert city full of farms and orange groves. Beginning in the late 19th century, with the promise of cheap land and sunny skies, people started to move out west. Soon, Los Angeles was a growing metropolis. As the city grew, so did its standing in the American economy. By the early 20th century,  Spring Street became home to 23 financial structures, the city's first skyscraper, and a bustling trade market.

Spring Street remained this way, the center of the Western United States economy, until the 1960s. But by the 1970s, Spring Street was in disrepair, more known for its homeless population than its financial history. In the mid 1990s, with the help of several history-minded organizations including the LA Conservancy, redevelopment and revitalization projects got under way to restore this beautiful part of the city. Ten of the buildings in the district were designated Historic-Cultural Monuments. Businesses came back and the building's beautiful art-deco architecture were restored. 

Join Obscura Society LA and the LA Conservancy for a private walking tour of this beautifully revitalized district. The buildings on this tour will include: The San Fernando Building, Farmers and Merchants Bank and Annexes, Hermann Hellman Building (now Banco Popular de Puerto Rico), Braly Block (now the Continental Building), Stowell Hotel (also known as the El Dorado Hotel), Title Insurance and Trust Building, Alexandria Hotel, Security National Bank Building (now Los Angeles Theatre Center), Broadway-Spring Arcade Building, First Interstate Bank (now United California Bank), Pacific Electric Building, Rosslyn Hotel, and the Regent Theatre. We will even get to go inside some of these buildings! 

Details:

-Tour will begin promptly at 10 am in front of the San Fernando Building. Please be there by 9:45 am. 

-The tour will last appx. 2 hours and 45 minutes.

-This is a walking tour, so wear your walking shoes! 

-Tour is fine for kids, as long as they can walk up to a mile and half. 

-Parking is available at Pershing Square Garage, located at Olive Street and 5th Street in downtown Los Angeles (one block south and three blocks west of the tour meeting location). $5 with validation. Plus, there are various street spots you can attempt to find.