12 Images

L.A. from the ground up

PATRIARCH: Gen. Harrison Gray Otis, second from right in 1900 Rose Parade, gained control of the fledgling Times. Says one expert: He “quickly developed the fixed idea that he owned Los Angeles ¼ and that he alone was destined to lead it to greatness.” ()
PIONEER: Harrison Gray Otis took over the young paper. ()
BUILDER: Harry Chandler amassed vast land holdings. ()
The 1920s
THE 1920S: The Times’ city desk in 1922, five years after Harry Chandler became publisher. He used the paper to tear down left-leaning political candidates, promote his business interests and, in at least one case, push a quirky passion. ()
Carving out a city
CARVING OUT A CITY: Among those looking over plans for Mulholland Drive in 1932 are, second from left, engineer DeWitt L. Raeburn and, from center to left, M.H. “the General” Sherman, Harry Chandler, Harry H. Merrick and William Mulholland. The power structure of the day was decidedly white and male. ()
TRANSFORMER: Otis Chandler remade The Times. ()
MOVE: The current Times building, minus a later annex, rises behind a worker demolishing the paper’s previous home in 1937, during the Harry Chandler era. Harry’s sway was impressive, but one L.A. expert places the family’s peak influence a few decades later under power couple Norman and Dorothy Chandler. ()
ANOINTER: Norman Chandler wielded GOP power. ()
PATRON: Dorothy Chandler led the Music Center effort. ()
TURNABOUT: Organized labor, anathema to the founders of the Chandler dynasty and other power brokers of the era, makes its case in a March 2003 rally on Bunker Hill’s Grand Avenue for better wages and benefits. In recent years, Los Angeles has become a national model for the resurgence of unions. ()
MOVER: Eli Broad, left, going over plans for redoing the County Museum of Art with architect Renzo Piano, is a key power broker in current Los Angeles. But getting results is far more complicated than it was for Harry Chandler. ()
CHANGE: Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa says: “Today, there is no single node of power in the city.” ()