Visual History Through Postcards

Review of Collection of California postcards (Collection 1351). UCLA Library Special Collections, Charles E. Young Research Library, UCLA.

There are few printed ephemera as ubiquitous as the postcard in twentieth century America. Over the past several weeks, I spent time conducting archival research with the collection of California postcards at UCLA Library Special Collections. It consists of twenty-two oversize boxes, each containing an estimated two hundred postcards of various locations throughout California. The collection includes items that date back to 1890 and continues to grow today.

The material is organized by location and occasionally subject matter, which can be confusing to navigate. The finding aid container list includes close to two hundred categories in alphabetical order. These categories are mostly of specific locations, but some are more general, such as Beach scenes. Many of the location-based categories feel redundant. For example, there are different folders labeled Southern California, Los Angeles, Westwood, Santa Monica, and Ocean Park (Santa Monica). Since the container list is not organized in a nested structure, researchers must take note of and request all the possible folders that might contain a specific item. The postcards are also not organized by date. The same folder might contain both items from the early 1900s and from 2004. This makes it difficult for researchers who might find a specific time period more relevant to their topic. Some postcards have been used and mailed, with writing on the back. Therefore, postcards that might have belonged to a single owner are separated into different areas.

The collection is accessible in the sense that anyone can technically request and look at it at Special Collections during their open hours. However, the requesting and viewing process is highly regulated. Researchers are allowed to request five boxes of material a day. In the reading room, one folder from a box is allowed for viewing at a time, which is troublesome as this collection has many folders containing less than three postcards.

The Special Collections system can be difficult to navigate, but I still feel that the archival research process has been interesting and rewarding. My favorite finds in the collection are visually striking in one way or another. I enjoyed the folder of postcards about the San Gabriel Mission Play, an 1912 outdoor pageant that depicted California mission history. These included meticulous illustrations from each act of the play that I think will be useful for our research. I was also surprised by the number of postcards that portrayed Los Angeles as a lush, green city characterized by its parks, which is a contrast to today’s dry landscape. There are dozens of postcards depicting Westlake Park (now MacArthur Park), Hollenbeck Park, and others.

The collection of California postcards tells a rich history of the state, albeit through a romanticized, sentimentalized lens. The postcard itself is a biased artifact, mostly intended for tourists for the purpose of commemoration. A single image encapsulates a trip, an experience, a place. What subjects are deserving of remembrance? Who decides what images represent a given site? The postcard is a reflection of the dominant view on how a physical place should be snapshotted in time. This collection of California postcards allows us to learn about ways in which California was popularly visually communicated over the past one hundred years.

Portrait of Don Antonio Maria Lugo

Don Antonio Maria Lugo, Photograph album of early Los Angeles (Collection 94/57). UCLA Library Special Collections, Charles E. Young Research Library, UCLA.

An image depicts a man in black and white rendering, likely a drawing. It is a portrait: the man’s head and torso are in three quarter view, facing the right side of the image. He is wearing a large top hat, slanted toward his front, and what appears to be another cloth head-covering underneath. His hair is white, slightly wavy, and about chin-length. The wrinkles on his forehead, under his eyes, and on his cheeks indicate he is of older age. The wrinkles in between his eyebrows are especially noticeable, giving him a stern but worrisome expression. His facial features are large and prominent on his face, especially his eyes and nose. He is neatly dressed in a black dress jacket, collared white shirt, and tie. The portrait is framed by a dark, oval vignette.

There is one line of inscription at the bottom of the image: “Don Antonio Maria Lugo – came to Los Angeles 1803.” This portrait of Don Antonio Maria Lugo was found in the photograph album of early Los Angeles. I encountered it while conducting archival research at the UCLA Library Special Collections for Professor Lopez’s digital humanities course on Mexican history in California. From the portrait’s formal qualities, we can infer that the subject was a man of prominence. His status granted him a portrait drawing created for archival purpose, to be remembered by future generations. This image is the only labeled formal portrait in the photograph album of early Los Angeles. While the label states Lugo’s year of arrival in Los Angeles, we do not know the year the image was created nor the age at which Lugo was depicted. A 1991 Los Angeles Times article indicates that the Lugo family was sent from Spanish-dominated Mexico to settle in Northern California in 1773 (Griego). Antonio Maria Lugo later became mayor of Los Angeles and one of California’s largest landowners. It is unsurprising that the only known subject in this photograph album of early Los Angeles is a mayor-landowner of Spanish origin.

Although the photo album included a subject heading for “Mexicans,” I unfortunately could not identify any images that gave visual cues to Mexican California. After a few quick web searches, it is apparent that this portrait is perhaps the only known image of Don Antonio Maria Lugo. Every essay, description, anecdote about Lugo and his family is accompanied by this same stoic black and white portrait. It is interesting to think about which images will remain of and represent different communities in the distant future. While Lugo is remembered by his stern facial expression, others in his era live without archival representation. It was challenging to locate images of Mexicans, and many photographs remain unlabeled. The scarcity of visual artifacts during this period in this collection of early Los Angeles photographs is indicative of the hierarchies that exist in archives. What objects and documents are preserved in archives? What subjects are included and excluded? This portrait of Don Antonio Maria Lugo is just one example of the limitations that exist in narrating history through archival research.

Cattle Brands of Mexican LA

[Box 10, Folder 8] Item ‘Document of Sepulveda Family Brands’. Ana Bégué de Packman Papers (Collection 1491). Department of Special Collections, Charles E. Young Research Library, UCLA.

Archival work has been a fun, exciting, yet often confusing journey for me so far. Currently, I am working on the Ana Begue de Packman Papers, which is a collection that consists of Packman’s photographs, newspaper articles, manuscripts, genealogies, maps, correspondence pertaining to the history of the city of Los Angeles, California missions, and Southern California ranchos.

Specifically, within the collection I have been sifting through Box 10, folder 8. This folder consists of material related to cattle brands of rancheros in Southern California, which is rooted in Mexican Los Angeles history. The artifact that piqued my interest is this piece of paper titled ‘BRAND on RANCHO PALOS VERDES’. Within this paper, 3 brands are drawn in pencil in the left margins of the paper. Indented to the right of these brands are the text description of the brand. The first brand is in an elaborate S shape with a small v as an accent in the middle. This brand per the description is confirmed to Dona Maria Juana Pantoja, widow of Don Dolores Sepulveda, and was recorded on June 11, 1855. It is noted that this woman married Don Jose Antonio Machado. The second brand is in a heart shape, with a Y as a stem at the top of the heart. This brand per the description is identified for the cattle of Don Juan Maria Sepulveda, and was issued on October 23, 1839, by Alcalde Tiburcio Tapaia. The third brand is also heart shaped but more round, and has a sort of cursive y as the stem. This brand per the description is registered to Don Juan Sepulveda and Dona Felipa Alaniz de Sepulveda and was confirmed on November 13, 1855 by John W. Shore.

This piece of paper seems to be an objective document that logs the different cattle brands of Rancho Palos Verdes. However, there is no physical stamp or ink indication as to whether or not this is an official documentation by some local government or a document written for personal use. Because the brands were drawn in pencil, this makes the document seem unofficial, and raises further questions to whom this document was written for. When I read through the text, the first questions I asked were ‘Who were these people’? The three brands were either issued to someone with the last name Sepulveda or related to someone with the last name Sepulveda. As a UCLA student, I recognized that Sepulveda is one of the major streets in the city of Los Angeles. A quick secondary research online said that Rancho de los Palos Verdes was a part of a land dispute claimed by Jose Dolores Sepulveda, a Mexican colonial for the Sepulveda family. This document holds information that could be chronicling the genealogy of the Sepulveda family and it could be a potential lead for more information about the development of Mexican Los Angeles specific to that region. The second question I pondered was, ‘Why are there different dates?’ The dates jumped from 1855, to 1839, to 1855 again. This seems to solidify the idea that the Sepulveda family won the claims, had been on Rancho Palos Verdes for many years, and that the lands were generationally passed down. Other questions that I asked were for what purpose was this document written? Was it written to be similar to a family tree but with cattle brands? Was it purely for informational and identifying purposes to officials and to authorities? These questions may or may not be answered as I continue to go through my archival research but nonetheless, they pose interesting circumstances that I would have otherwise never come across.

Idyls of the Missions

Box 10, Folder 4: “Idyls of the Missions by Clarice Garland”, Ana Bégué de Packman Papers (Collection 1491). Department of Special Collections, Charles E. Young Research Library, UCLA.

Though on the outside “Idyls of the Missions” looks like an educational and historical account of the California Missions, the viewpoint and information it provides, as well as the viewpoint and information it excludes, allows the reader a chance to witness a part of the complex relationship between Mexicans and the area now known as California. The “Idyls of the Missions” is a brochure written by Clarice Garland bounded by string with thick, cardboardlike front and back covers. There is little wear on the object, especially considering it was published in the 1917. This artifact features text, drawings, and poems from 1769 to 1833 in order to reconstruct the multifaceted issues and ultimate decline of the Californian missions.

The writing within seems to dramatize the fall of the Missions by telling the story of Governor José Maria Echandia who claimed to be following the instructions of the Mexican government to secularize the Missions. These accounts, stories, poems, and pictures all seem tell the story of the privileged and the powerful, as opposed to the average person. Like most artifacts of its time, the brochure uses the names and stories of Mexican immigrants but seems to deterritorialize these things from their contexts and re-situates them within the context of the Anglo American. By viewing Mexican histories through a White perspective, important information is lost as it does not translate without the proper cultural and social background. Because of this, the brochure seems to have been produced for the upper middle class white American, perhaps used as a light, coffee table read instead of as a powerful, serious account of the history of the Missions.

This brochure elicits questions about the origin of the information it presents, and I am curious as to where and how the author attained these stories and poems. Had they already been translated away from their authentic Mexican origins or did the author think to change them himself in order to make them more suitable for his upper middle class audiences? I am also curious as to how this account of history would have been different if it had be written by someone of Mexican decent, who understood the social and cultural elements lost in translation. These questions are frequently brushed over, however they should be asked in order to properly contextualize and view this artifact from the past.

Dominguez Wills

[Will of Cristobal Dominguez], Jan, 1825. Rancho San Pedro: documents (Collection 170/41). UCLA Library Special Collections, Charles E. Young Research Library.

What will you think when there comes the day that you know you will pass away soon? I had imaginations of saying peaceful goodbyes to my loved ones. If I worked hard enough and accumulated some wealth, I would also ask myself the cliché but essential question: how should I divide my money? I was attracted to The Will of Cristobal Dominguez from almost two-hundred years ago in January 1825. Himself once a soldier in Spanish army, Cristobal (1761-1825) lived an honored and affluent life along with his possessional of a rancho called San Pedro.

This official document was written under Cristobal’s will, and his son Manuel Dominguez signed the document on January 5th. As described in the beginning of the document, similar to his uncle’s, Cristobal was extremely and unable to physically write the document himself, but it was claimed that his “senses and memory and believing” were clear enough to make these judgments. In Juan Jose Dominguez’s Will (1809), Rancho San Pedro was not specified to be passed to Cristobal. It was successfully declared by Cristobal in 1823, only two years before his Will and passage. Cristobal thus became the biggest beneficiary as the owner. Manuel, who signed Cristobal’s will, later also became the most influential one among his siblings. Hence, it raises the question of whether or not the clauses in the document are authentically drafted and truthfully convey the will of the deceased?

Nonetheless, the document still reflects religious and social issues in the early 1800s. In the beginning of his will, Cristobal expressed his gratitude and respect to Roman Catholic and Jesus Christ. It shows the strong influence of the missions and its influence on social order in Mexican California. Unlike his uncle, who was a bachelor with no children, Cristobal was married with Maria de los Reyes Ybanez (1763-1834), and they were lucky enough to had nine children, though of which only six survived. As mentioned by Acuna in Occupied America, it was a “badge of honor” to have a large family for who could afford it. It could be told from this document that Dominguez family was very influential and affluent at that time. Indeed, even when this Will was written, Maria was pregnant again as mentioned in the ninth clause. Hence, it reflects the endeavor of people at that time to have a more extended family.

Throughout this Will, it could be seen that Cristobal trust his wife and his son Manuel the most. Cristobal granted the right to in charge of his property to his wife and only allow partition among children once they got married. Comparing to the unfair treatment like sexual violence and “commercialization” of women’s marriage under Spanish-Mexican rule, Maria had relatively higher than average role over her family and property. This could be a sign of later rise of female rights starting in more well-off families.

Despite the question raised against the document’s true reflection of Cristobal’s will, this piece encompasses historical circumstances of Mexican American and transaction of lands in the late 1700s to the early 1800s. Moreover, it reflects religious impacts, social and genders issues of that generation. After all, what be left to history when one passed away and what will be his will?

Works Cited

Acuna, Rodolfo, “California Lost: America For Euroamericans”, Occupied America 4th ed., P133, 2000, accessed April 10th 2019.

History of Dominguez Rancho Adobe Museum, Dominguez Rancho Adobe Museum, accessed April 24th 2019, https://dominguezrancho.org/domingo-rancho-history/ [Will of Cristobal Dominguez], Jan, 1825.

The Curse of Señorita Petronilla

Newspaper article, The Curse of Rancho Loz Feliz, Griffith Family Papers (Collection 2060, Box 16 Folder 4). Department of Special Collections, Charles E. Young Research Library, UCLA.

Newspaper articles and clippings are dispersed throughout the Griffith Family Papers collection. Among the miscellaneous news in the collection, a fascinating article in one box described the eerie tale of a Mexican ghost that roams Griffith Park. The article, titled “The Curse of Rancho Loz Feliz,” describes the story of Senorita Petronilla and her curse upon the land. The story of Petronilla is one that marks the significance of Mexican past in the land that Mr. Griffith acquired, a past that is fairly difficult to find within the collection. Despite the few creases, folds, and tears in the newspaper, the author of the article engages the audience in to the story through fascinating visual representations and compelling storytelling. This aspect of engaging the readers into this story is important, to bring these historical characters to life and allow readers to gain an understanding of the stories of the Mexicans who resided in the rancho prior to it transforming into a tourist attraction in present Los Angeles. The story itself seems as if it was produced for residents of Los Angeles, as the author addresses them as “angelenos” in the first paragraph and makes the assumption that the readers will know of Griffith Park, as well as the many landmarks that exist within it.

Although the article speaks of Mexican history and beliefs, it does not seem targeted towards a Mexican audience. The author seems to imagine their audience as the residents of Loz Feliz or around Griffith Park, who might have not been well informed on the rich Mexican history of the area. By speaking of the topic in high regard and immersing the audience in the story to bring the story of Senorita Petronilla to life, it made me imagine that there might be a possibility that the speaker had a connection to Mexican culture. Aside from this, I also noticed that the visual representation for this story is an illustration of a Mexican cowboy on a horse, further bringing the historical characters mentioned in this story to life. The illustration resembles a map, with Griffith observatory present in the background. This may have been important to map out the history of the rancho, as the author continuously mentions the specific locations that Senorita Petronilla was believed to roam and place the curse on the land, as well as where important events in history took place to transform the rancho to what it became in the 1930’s.

This piece was shown to the general public near Los Angeles, as it was written in the Los Angeles Times and most of the advertisements are for stores located in areas around L.A. Written mostly for Loz Feliz residents, which may have comprised of celebrities that called areas near Hollywood their home, it is sensible that this story is written in a creative and engaging manner as most of them may have found this article at their doorstep. This piece may very well have been written to change public perception of this new land that was acquired fairly recently from the time it was produced as well as create an exciting take on Mexican culture. By writing this story, the author is able to bring awareness to the general public of those who had original ownership of the rancho and much of California, rather than erase a part of history that is vastly significant.

Besos y Versos: Manuela García’s Los Angeles Story

Manuela García is arguably one of the most significant voices of early Los Angeles, yet little is known of her. It has been a singular pleasure to work, over the past few months under the auspices of The Autry Museum of the American West, with a dynamic, transnational, interdisciplinary group of artists, scholars, educators, and museum professionals on reanimating García’s life and work.

Born into a family of musicians, García collaborated with Charles Lummis, former head of the Los Angeles Public Library, to collect and record “Spanish” folk songs. García contributed over 100 songs to Lummis’ project. While the importance of his work has long been recognized, Lummis’ so-called “informants” — culture bearers and artists like García — remain largely unknown. Our project amplifies the potential of decolonial museum praxis, digital technology, and performance to reimagine race, gender, and place, critique inequities, and tell untold histories.

We are a collaborating hemispherically on a series of projects about García, one of which is a cluster of essays set to release in October 2020, which I’ll link to here. Another, which you’ll find below, is a binaural soundscape featuring members of our team including Amy Shimshon-Santo and Susie García (no relation), produced and mixed by John Hendicott and Aurelia Soundworks.

 

1848 Proclamation on Land in Alta California

The archival materials in the Mexican proclamations issued during the Mexican-American War, 1807-1864 collection consist of broadside documents issuing decrees from the Mexican federal government to the general public. These decrees address various topics such as taxes, public safety during holiday festivities, and the National Guard. However, folder six contains eleven proclamations that cover administrative and political concerns that would have impacted the inhabitants of Mexico City and beyond. In looking to investigate the 19th century history of Mexican California, item five in this folder serves as a vital entry point for exploring multiple facets of Mexican politics, Mexican relations to the United States of America, and delineating how these political components have shaped our understanding of California.

“Proclamation on Alta California,” Box 1, Folder 6, Mexican proclamations issued during the Mexican-American War (Collection 997). UCLA Library Special Collections, Charles E. Young Research Library.

Item five is exemplary of the types of items in this collection; the broadside documents are individual, unbound sheets of paper with only black text. The paper of the proclamation shows signs of aging through discoloration along with minor tears and folding creases on the right side edges of the paper. There are no images, illustrations, or color on the proclamation only black, centered text. At first glance the proclamation simply appears to be a text heavy document, however variations in typography such as changes in font style and size offer different visual queues for the organization and significance of information. The most prominent example of this would be the “title” of the document. The first row of text at the top of the document spells out “José Ramon Malo, Go-” in a bold, capitalized serif font. José Ramon Malo was the governor of Mexico City during this time period; it appears that he was the last figure in the bureaucratic ladder before this proclamation was publically issued. Malo’s role, being in a position of power and directly addressing the public sphere of Mexico City, is emphasized through immediately visible typography differentiating it from the rest of the text.

This proclamation uses typography to indicate vital information through out the document. The text mentions the names and roles of various individuals in positions of power, lists different dates, and mentions property in Alta California in relation to the family of Agustin de Iturbide. All of this information offers various entry points to consider how this collection can offer a new perspective to understating the history of 19th century Mexican California. While the documents in this collection offer a selective perspective of Mexican politics, this document offers a glimpse to the political hierarchies and bureaucracies that comprised the Mexican government during the 19th century. This perspective incites questions of how “California” as a territory was conceptualized during the first half of the 19th century and how this varied between entities, primarily with Mexican government and the United States government. With these queries in mind, the Mexican proclamations collection will be investigated through archival work and secondary research into the historical context and figures that compose this collection. This investigation aims to serves as a basis for future research into 19th century Mexican California for other historians, students, and scholars.

Birds-Eye View of Los Angeles

Based on the finding aid, this monochrome map was collected by George Washington Hazard and Verne Dyson. It features the Downtown area of Los Angeles between 1880 and 1910. This map is off-scale and lacks direction and distance symbols. Also, only some streets are named on the map. Thus, the map was not created for the general public to navigate but for display purpose or one’s private use.

Birds-Eye View of Los Angeles, Hazard-Dyson Los Angeles photograph album (Collection 94/171). UCLA Library Special Collections, Charles E. Young Research Library, UCLA.

A map is a tool not just for navigation, but also for telling a story. More importantly, it conveys how the creator views and represents the world as well as the culture and people. Then, what story of the neighborhoods or communities does the “Birds-Eye View Map” document and retain across space and time?

This map depicts the Central Los Angeles region in a birds-eye view angle. Referring to Google Maps, some of the locations marked on the map still exist today. For instance, the Los Angeles River, “San Pedro St.”, “Court House St.” (now Court St.), “Third St.”, and “Fourth St.” Accordingly, the neighborhoods featured on the map would be Downtown and Echo Park. Within the birds-eye view projection, Downtown becomes the central focus of the map. Each neighborhood within the region has distinct architectural styles in drawing. Interestingly, the buildings in the Downtown area are more diverse and detailed comparing to those in other neighborhoods. These opinionated visual elements suggest that the dominant city culture of the 1900s Los Angeles was located around Downtown.

The map is captioned: “Birds-Eye View of Los Angeles.” Considering the map’s main focus of the Downtown area, how did Downtown represent Los Angeles during the 19th century? Also, what population (i.e. racial groups) was residing in Central Los Angeles at that time? Since the racial category of “Mexican” was only counted around 1930 (Hise 553; Los Angeles Almanac), it is difficult to trace back the racial demographic data in the late 1800s. The earliest racial demographic data of the Downtown area is recorded in 1960 on Social Explorer. Based on the U.S. Census data presented on Social Explorer, the Hispanic community has gradually moved to the surrounding neighborhoods of Downtown from 1960 to 2017.

Another similar change is that the Downtown area is getting more racially diverse today (data from US Census presented on Statistical Atlas). However, the reasons that caused the demographic change from the 19th century still remain unclear in the research.

Additional Information: Hise briefly mentioned California’s first redevelopment project that was “initiated to bring affluent Angelenos ‘downtown’” in the late 20th century (554). The Community Redevelopment Agency removed the “long-term, primarily, Latino residents from Chavez Ravine” in 1959.

According to Don Parson, the redevelopment of Bunker Hill and Chavez Ravine contributes to the construction of a modern Los Angeles (335). In this case, the modernization strategy is to remove the marginal low-income residents of color (Parson 336). Does the main focus of the Birds-Eye Los Angeles Map associate with the redevelopment project of the Downtown area? When the Latino population was deemed as a challenge to the “modernization” of Los Angeles, again, which neighborhoods or even which community gets to represent Los Angeles?

Works cited:

Hise, Greg. “Border City: Race and Social Distance in Los Angeles.” American Quarterly, vol. 56, no. 3, 2004, pp. 545–58. JSTOR.

“Historical Census Racial/Ethnic Numbers in Los Angeles County 1850 to 1980.” Los Angeles Almanac. © 1998–2017 Given Place Media, publishing as Los Angeles Almanac. Retrieved April 25, 2019.

Parson, Don. “‘This Modern Marve’: Bunker Hill, Chavez Ravine, and the Politics of Modernism in Los Angeles.” Southern California Quarterly, vol. 75, no. 3/4, 1993, pp. 333–50. JSTOR, doi:10.2307/41171684.

“Race and Ethnicity in Downtown, Los Angeles, California.” Statistical Atlas. Retrieved April 25, 2019. https://statisticalatlas.com/neighborhood/California/LosAngeles/

Downtown/Race-andEthnicity “Total Population, 1960 & 2017.” Map. Social Explorer. Social Explorer, n.d. April 25 2019.
(based on data from U.S. Census Bureau)

Honorable Irlandés

Reminiscencias Históricas. Escrita por el C. General de división Mariano Ruiz, veterano de 1862. Dedicadas a su honorable amigo, Mr. John T. Gaffy, de San Pedro, Calif., E.U.A. Mexico, September 15, 1926. Physical Description: 3 vol. in 1. 91 leaves of text. Typescript illustrated [mounted photographs]. Scope and Content Note Reminiscences of the war of intervention in Mexico, 1862.

“Honorable Irlandés, Mr. John T Gaffey. De San Pedro California. E.U.A. 1926” is a black and white photograph of John T Gaffey located in the first few pages of “Reminiscencias Historicas. Escrita por el C. General de división Mariano Ruiz, veterano de 1862. Dedicadas a su honorable amigo, Mr. John T. Gaffy, de San Pedro, Calif., E.U.A. Mexico, September 15, 1926” from “Bandini Family Papers, ca. 1834-1927”, also known as collection B. The title of this work translates to “Honorable Irish, Mr. John T Gaffey of San Pedro, California. U.S.A 1926”. The photo was likely taken in 1926.

Physically, the picture sits in the middle of the page, taking up most of the space. It is a formal portrait of Mr. Gaffey in a suit. His portrait is cropped in an oval shape and is printed in a rectangular sheet. He appears to be posed sitting on a chair at an angle, looking sternly into the camera with his right hand on his lap. The title in blue text is printed below the photo on the pages on the book. There appears to be no hint of the location of the photo, except that Mr. Gaffey is from San Pedro, California. The overall mood and attitude of the photo is serious and formal. It commands respect and admiration from the viewer, which matches his occupation as a journalist, politician, and businessman. Considering Mr. Gaffey’s title as “Honorable Irish”, it is likely that he kept up with this reputation in person. Three things one may infer from this photo is that people, especially those in business, likely took their photos seriously during this time period, color printing was either not invented yet or quite expensive, and that Mr. Gaffey likely had a large impact on Mexican Los Angeles business and politics. Considering that this is a formal portrait, not much may be elucidated from this work except for what can be directly seen from the physical work.

As a researcher, I’m curious about the purpose of this work. Was it commissioned for this document, since the book is dedicated to Mr. Gaffey? Was it to promote Mr. Gaffey’s popularity for his professional pursuits? This work may be useful for researchers attempting to learn about the financial and political figures prominent in Mexican Los Angeles during the 20th century. Considering that Mr. Gaffey is an Irish American, it is interesting to see his relationship with Mexican Americans. Although this portrait highlights an impactful figure during this time period and setting, perhaps auxiliary documents from the Bandini Family Papers can reveal more about Mr. Gaffey’s influence during this time.