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Los Angeles and Southern California *

USC's Regional History Collection archives

Since the mid-1970s, USC Special Collections has been acquiring archival materials on Los Angeles and Southern California.  Initially, we focused on collecting the papers of elected officials, among them the archives of Congresswoman Yvonne Brathwaite Burke, Congressmen Alphonzo Bell and Chet Holifield, Los Angeles Sheriff Eugene Biscailuz, and California Governor Edmund G. (Jerry) Brown, Jr.   

More recently, the Regional History Collection has grown to include a range of archival materials representing the diverse and complex history of Southern California.  Visual materials documenting one hundred years of the Southern California history can be found in the Los Angeles Examiner, California Historical Society, and “Dick” Whittington photography collections; major urban plans are documented in the Bunker Hill Redevelopment Project and Century Freeway records; and the records of the Webster and Independent Commissions detail investigations of the Los Angeles Police Department in the wake of L.A.’s 1992 Uprisings following the verdict in the Rodney King trial.      

Finding aids for these and many other collections can be accessed through the Online Archive of California and Archives at USC.

The links below provide information about accessing archival materials in person at USC Libraries Special Collections and through the USC Digital Library, where some collection materials are available online:

Requesting and accessing resources for use in the Special Collections reading room

Accessing digitized collections in the USC Digital Library


Materials related to Los Angeles and Southern California are also available in the Boeckmann Center (Latin American Studies) and University Archives in Special Collections, as well as at the Art & Architecture and Cinematic Arts Libraries at USC.