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1914-1916 Part 1

1914-1916 Part 4

30 Years Ago in
Free Venice

30 Years Ago in Call Someplace Paradise and/or Ghost Town

John Hamilton

Free Venice Beachhead archives selected articles 1980-81

Beachhead Archives 1982

Beachhead Archives 1983

Beachhead Archives 1984

Lighthearted Beachhead pieces

People of Venice (from Beachhead)

Windward Avenue Articles from Beachhead

Art in the Beachhead

Venice institutions from the Beachhead

Venice in Books A-C

Venice in Books D-K

Venice in Books L-P

Venice in Books Q-Z

Quotations about Venice

Venice in Magazines and other ephemeral sources

1981 Resistance Celebration Schedule

1981 Resistance Celebration Articles

Birth of Venice:
old-timey magazines

Destiny's Consent by
Laura Shepard

Lions and Gondolas

Rana Ayzeren

Tales of the Blue Meanie by Allan Cole

Another Chapter from Tales of the Blue Meanie by Allan Cole

"Brick" Garrigues

The Spectre

Venice Historical Society

1969 Police Riots

Jack the Liar




1914-1916 Part 5

Minorities and Racism
by Mark McIntire

from Free Venice Beachhead #126 June 1980

It is impossible to fully appreciate the status and condition of racial minorities by leafing through the pages of an Anglo, community paper like the Venice Vanguard. Brown, black, and yellow people are infrequently mentioned because they were despised and therefore unworthy. This is called racism. They are invisible because they are petty bourgeois, working class, or poor. This myopic vision of reality is called class consciousness. The editors and reporters of the local newspaper were not members of any ruling class but they unconsciously promoted that view. In such a world minorities appear only infrequently, and then for the most part as criminals, anti-socials, or curiosities. Nevertheless, when studying local Venice history between 1914-1916 through the pages of the newspaper one catches rare, fleeting glimpses of these people and the lives which they lived.

Predominantly white, Anglo-Saxon Protestant Venice of 1914-1916 had a variegated ethnic population and was no different form other small cities of the area during this period in its attitude towards minorities. The Venice Evening Vanguard reflected the attitude of its readers; it was racist. A person’s race or ethnic origin was used to trigger a stereotypical image in the reader’s mind. No attempts were made to disguise the bigotry; no apologies were made. The newspaper was naively ignorant of its prejudice against other races even when this prejudice was quite obvious. The three minority groups given the most attention were Orientals, Mexicans, and Blacks - the three most prominent minorities from Europe. All were stereotyped, some more viciously than others.

One of the main causes of bigotry among Venetians was their extreme ethnocentrism. White, Anglo-Saxon Protestant American culture was seen as the greatest form of culture to which a society could attain. A 1915 society page article described a James Chapin, explorer, along with the Pygmy he found in Africa. He had just returned to tell about his “strange discoveries.” Referring to a photograph published in the paper Chapin is quoted: “This little fellow is a polygamist as are all the members of his tribe. Some of the chiefs had as many as 200 wives.” It was noted that “the explorer did not see any evidence of cannibalism for himself.”


A rather large population of Orientals lived in or near Venice. A Japanese fishing village was located near the Long Wharf north of Santa Monica while small numbers of Chinese lived or worked in both Santa Monica and Venice. These two ethnic minorities were often viewed differently by Venetians who were often well disposed towards the Japanese but condescending towards the Chinese.

The inhabitants of the Japanese village were fishermen and an integral economic part of the Santa Monica Bay community. Economic competition led to animosity which was exacerbated by racial differences. When a sudden increase in the schools of fish in the Santa Barbara Channel occurred, the Vanguard reported that the abundance would cause a decrease in the price of fish. But white fishermen out of San Pedro decided to restrict fishing in order to keep prices up. The members of the Japanese village refused to comply with the voluntary fishing restraints proposed by the San Pedro group, which then threatened to sail a flotilla up the coast and force them to comply. Violence was only narrowly averted by local authorities who stepped in and fined four Japanese fishermen $50 each for illegally fishing with seine nets within the three mile limit.

Crime also cast a shadow over the relationship between Venetians and the Japanese. For example R. E. Denning and M. Oura were arrested at the village on charges of white slavery. There was a search for the women involved but they were not found due to “…secret passages connecting one Jap’s home with another…not known to any white man.” It was suggested that county officers make a thorough “cleaning up” of the village. It was reported that “the police arrested a Japanese with an unpronounceable name” on charges of annoying residents near Thornton Ave. and Ocean Front Walk by looking though their windows.

There was also a widespread fear of “the yellow peril.” A Venice city trustee commented on the 100,000 Japanese living on the Hawaiian islands: “the presence of so many Japs on the islands is going to become a most interesting problem for Uncle Sam to handle…Even now the country is virtually at the mercy of the little brown men…There is no telling what may happen…” This issue was further expounded on by City Attorney Hanna who said: “A number of these study little yellow fellows were on the beach doing Jiu Jitsu and they were models of perfect development. It is possible that some day we will have to send some of our people against these fellows in battle.”

Japanese considered themselves Americans as evidence by their celebration of the Fourth of July. Through the organization of the Japanese Association of Southern California, a 4th of July picnic was held at the Japanese village. What was referred to as “Nipponese” pastimes and games were played on the beach. As was customary for any picnic, speeches were addressed to the crowd by important Japanese of the Southland. Because they were oriental the entire affair was termed an “Oriental Activity” not an American one.

Another article reported that a fire in the village had caused over $40,000 worth of damage to 25 buildings. The Pacific Electric Co, whose tracks ran through the village, pledged to help repair the damage. But the Vanguard could not resist a racist innuendo. It reported that the fire made the Japanese realize that in order to protect their homes they would have to install a fire bell. The bell was located on top of a high pole and the only way to ring it was for someone to climb the pole, according to the paper. The suggestion of monkeys was obviously being implied.

Japanese art and ambition were however admired. The Strand Café was redecorated with a Japanese theme and the “whole interior is said to be the most beautiful creation yet attempted on the beach.” A news item described a Japanese businessman who donated to the Christmas charity drive as a “noble hearted son of the Cherry Blossom Land…he has a generous heart even if his tongue is foreign.” It was reported without comment that Tom Yamaraka and Ike Irakazawa had graduated from the Venice School of Aviation. The Christian Woman’s Board of Missions welcomed kindergarten age Japanese children to their institutional programs. A movie about Japan played at a local theater. An ad for The Courtship of O San stated that the movie portrayed the “beauty, poetry, and whimsical daintiness of the Japanese people.”

The Chinese were also the victims of prejudice. Len San’s application to establish a Chinese laundry was denied by the Board of Trustees because of the objections of Westminster Ave. property owners. The specific objections were not given, but the need for a Chinese laundry hardly held as much sway as any objections local property owners might have raised. Another article entitled, “Now, what do you know about this, Chinaman beats Irishman” discussed the victory of Leo Lee, the pride of Chinatown over his Caucasian opponent. The tenor of the article shows the preconceived racial beliefs “white-skinned” superiority that existed among many Venetians. Another reference to Chinese involved the seizure of “vast amounts of opium and morphine” by Los Angeles police at the home of Toy On and Wong Sing.

Chinese were described as gamblers and dope smugglers in some articles, but in others they were ordinary citizens who forecasted the weather, and played baseball. Jack Woo, Hom Chung, and Quing Pin were arrested in Santa Monica on charges of maintaining a place where lottery drawings were held. There was mention in the paper of “connections with L.A. and San Francisco.” The area near Playa Del Rey was being watched by police and concerned citizens because of unusual activities observed by a chemist names March. He reported that he had seen men in parked cars on the bluffs shoot rockets off toward the ocean. Shortly afterward “Chinamen” landed on the beach, got into the cars and drove off toward Los Angeles. They may have been “Chinese smugglers, opium smugglers, or in communication with some of the foreign men-of-war ships known to be in southern waters.” Ray Jones of the State Board of Pharmacy and four deputies visited Chinatown (5th and Pennsylvania Ave.) in Santa Monica. They “were on the lookout for dope,” but didn’t find any. Santa Monica’s Chinatown was also warned that unless the occupants cleaned up their district it might be wiped out. The Chinese got busy painting and cleaning and no action was taken.

A few semi-positive articles concerning Chinese did appear. Young Sing described as a wealthy Chinese, was attacked one night while walking home. He shot his assailant but not before being hurt himself. The Vanguard expressed its sympathy for Sing and hoped he would not be in the hospital too long.

Lon Wa of Venice was described as a “Chinese gardener and weather prognosticator extraordinary.” Mention was also made of Lai Tin, a Chinese baseball player from Honolulu who was signed by the White Sox as the first Chinese player in major league history. Fook Wo Lung was the only Oriental mentioned by name in the newspapers during May-June 1915. He engineered a deal by which the Chinese Chamber of Commerce contributed to the La Fiesta de las Flores parade. But the Vanguard could not resist belittling the man. The Bay area had been experiencing a great deal of rainfall around this time and Fook Wo Lung was reported as saying that a “great Chinese dragon” had caused it.

Whatever Venetians felt about the Orientals in their own community there is evidence that they were fascinated by oriental culture. For example, the Breakers Club put on an Oriental Ball that was elaborate and popular. China, Japan, Persia, Egypt, and “all the countries of the Far and Middle East” were represented in the costumes worn by Venetians. Similarly, some of the women’s clubs held Japanese tea and chop suey parties. They discussed topics such as Oriental fashions, make up, and bound feet. Japanese prints were displayed and discussed at one such meeting.

Another minority, blacks, were generally treated with disdain. Segregation was the goal in Venice. Two separate articles in the Vanguard addressed this issue. The first dealt with a national issue, a legal challenge to anti-black occupancy laws before the U. S. Supreme Court. The particular laws in question were from St. Louis and Louisville, which prohibited blacks from occupying property in predominantly white neighborhoods. Commented the Vanguard: “The mixing of people…of decidedly opposite colors is not at any time desirable.” Segregation should not be legislated but achieved by other means.

In another article it was reported that Los Angeles property owners had organized to raise money to fight a law allowing the sale of property to Negroes.

Blacks were meant to be isolated, presumable like the Japanese in their village and the Chinese in Chinatown. For blacks this isolation manifested itself in a segregated “colored” church. Phillips Chapel M. E. of Venice. Clearly identified as a “colored church” it was nevertheless mentioned that “everyone was welcome.” A classified ad announced that a “colored” woman was offering her services as a cleaning lady.

Blacks were never mentioned on the society page. An exception occurred when one of the local Venice delegates to the convention of the United Daughters of the Confederacy in San Diego, Mrs. A. B. Davis, read a “charming little Negro dialect poem of her own composition” to her club.

Crimes committed by blacks were often sensationalized. Race was considered an important piece of information about a person whose name was entered on the police department dockets. One story of crime did not even have the names or descriptions of the suspects but their color was known. The headlines read: “Five Negroes in a Ford car…beat up three moving picture actors.” Guns were used, the actors were robbed, and Chief of Police Watson and his men “started after the Negroes toward Playa Del Rey.”

Criminal tendencies were pointed out when a “colored man” reportedly cashed bogus checks in the city. When three “colored crap shooters” were taken into custody from the grounds of the Al G. Barnes Circus it was so reported. In Camden New Jersey, Mrs. E. T. Sherman, formerly of Ocean Park, was assaulted and robbed. She was unconscious for an hour, dragged herself to a farm house a mile away, and told her story relating that it had been done by two Negroes. The next day, a single Negro was spotted with blood on his clothing, and with no “straightforward” story of his whereabouts the evening before. He was hung on a telephone pole and shot full of holes. So reported the Vanguard.

A black janitor, the newspaper referred to as a “trusted colored man,” was in the bank when the alarm went off after closing time. People began peering through the windows at him and he became “uneasy,” because he was certain someone would soon assume him to be a “bandit” and take a shot at him. Calling him a trusted black man leads one to assume that most black men can’t be trusted.

It was the idea of J. Goodman Braye to establish a Negro industrial school in Southern California. Mr. Braye was black, but because of the light color of his skin it was sometimes difficult for whites to recognize that fact. The school Braye proposed was to be structured along the lines of Tuskegee Institute. He came to the Bay district in July of 1916 hoping to obtain subscriptions to a $100,000 building fund. This school idea was endorsed by some of the leading citizens of Venice, including Mayor Gerety, W. A. Rennie of the Vanguard, R. A. Phillips and Douglas Wilson. No location for the school as yet had been selected. The school would train blacks in agriculture, domestic science, mechanics and vocational skills.

Blacks were often made fun of and described as abnormal. For instance a first page story told of a “colored gentleman, after imbibing too freely, tells the police of fantastic experiences.” Andrew Carson, “colored,” much the worse off for the potions he had imbibed, was arrested apparently for being drunk. He was quoted as having told police captain Lingo, “I had been fishin cap’n and my pole broke. Jest when I started for home the tide rose up and the bridge was done gone down the stream. Cap’n I’se not a bad man at all I jest was naturally over come by the high water and could not navigate home.” Captain Lingo replied: Not just water, I guess, Carson, unless you drank a great many chasers. You are simply drunk and the best place for you is in the can.”

Blacks, referred to as colored, were treated as subservient to white people. A cartoon printed by the paper showed the stereotyped black housekeeper as a clumsy imbecile. In two successive cartoons she drops a vase and an egg.

A black porter named Henry was mentioned in an article about the Venice Bowling alley. The article implied that everyone acquainted with bowling knew Henry.

The paper reported that Jefferson L. Edwards, editor of the Liberator (a black publication) had died. He had been a teacher, Justice of the Peace in Mississippi, a delegate to the National Silver Convention, and was self-educated. The article ended with an editorial aside: “he was a colored man far above the average intelligence of his race.”

Black culture was a novelty to Venetians. When manager Middleton of the Ocean Park Dance Pavilion booked the Sierra Colored Troupe, it was expected to draw the biggest crowd to the Ocean Park Pier since the fire. Similarly “old-fashioned colored cake walks” (strutting dance performed by southern blacks) attracted many to the amusement district.

The economic standing of Negroes was exemplified in an article that described a fire in Santa Monica at the home of L. Burke, a “colored man.” His gas stove exploded causing a fire. While there was no loss to the building “perhaps $10 would meet expenses of replacing carpet and bedding.”

In regard to the entertaining qualities of Negroes an advertisement for the Strand Café read: “The Big 4 Colored Entertainers from Mobile Ala. Plantation Melodies and All Popular Music.” An article with this same theme described a black man named Nat Love of Santa Monica. He had been famous in wild west days as “Deadwood Dick,” and had recently published a book about his life as a champion rope thrower and revolver shooter. He had also worked as a porter before moving to Santa Monica and, at that time, was “a faithful worker, a checker at the city yards.”

Negro eating habits were ridiculed when prizefighter Sam Langford rewarded his black trainers with a chicken dinner at the end of a training session. He remarked that “after them coons got through with them barnyard fowls, there was nothing but a pile of bones as big as the skeleton of a mule.”

One well known black in Venice was Sam Green who shined shoes on Pier Ave. He was praised for recruiting between 50 and 75 black men to serve in the army during the border fighting with Mexico. But the newspaper couldn’t resist a racist editorial comment, quoting Green as having said that he was having trouble getting blacks to serve as privates because they all wanted to be officers.

Blacks appear to have had their own club in Venice, called the Colored Society, where they held dances, vocal and instrumental concerts.

Another ethnic group which experienced prejudice were the Mexicans. Approximately 500 Mexicans lived in Venice, mostly in a barrio near the old Motordome (around Jefferson and Lincoln.) These people were also hated and feared more than the other minorities. During the Mexican civil war Pancho Villa had raided many parts of the American southwest and Anglos believed that the Mexicans were intent on recovering California.

These concerns were expressed almost daily in the pages of the Vanguard where Mexicans were pictured in a stereotypical and derogatory way. When Mexican-U.S. relations deteriorated in April 1914, the racist attitude of Venetians towards Mexicans became more virulent. The newspaper said that Ocean Parkers were casting “suspicious eyes” upon the Mexicans.

Independent municipalities began to pass laws to restrict Mexican residents. It was warned that no Mexicans would be allowed to “congregate on street corners.” And no more liquor was to be sold to Mexicans while the war was in progress. Said Santa Monica Police Chief Randell, “There’s no telling what kind of trouble might start” if Mexicans are not allowed to fill up with cheap wine.” Not long after this two Mexicans were placed under arrest for being boisterous. And chief Randell eventually issued a directive that anybody “looking suspicious” would be arrested. The law should have read: “Anyone looking Mexican will be arrested.”

Two Mexicans were arrested for disturbing the peace and three Mexicans were arrested for begging and acting in a “threatening manner” along Strand St. An individual, “looking as if he were dead,” and passed out in the street, was not identified other than as a Mexican. When on patrol one day, officer Stukey ran into an “aggressive” Mexican. “He (the Mexican) coolly informed the officer that he would cut him to pieces…Stukey shoved his revolver against the Mexican’s stomach.: The Mexican was arrested and the newspaper’s headline to this story was… “Officer Stukey whipped Mexico yesterday without firing a single shot.” At the police station, it seems that the man’s name was “unpronounceable” so he was booked with the prestigious name of “John Doe Mex.”

The escalating conflict in Texas over the search for Pancho Villa added to the suspicions and hostility many Venetians felt towards Mexicans. While the newspaper kept them well informed about developments there, Venetians were told of the danger that existed closer to home. In early May the Vanguard reported the U. S. government was conducting a search for spies and Mexican revolutionary plotters in San Diego and other areas of the Southwest as far east as New Orleans. Meanwhile Antonio Morales was arrested for suspicion of having participated in “a riot” in Montebello, three Mexican “riots” occurred in separate sections of Los Angeles on one day, and Ricardo Flores Magon and his brother Enrique, two alleged Mexican revolutionaries, went on trial in Los Angeles, charged with illegal use of the mails to incite riot. The Magon brothers were indeed revolutionaries. They published a revolutionary newspaper for Chicanos out of Los Angeles called Regeneration. It called for armed insurrection against U. S. capitalism and imperialism and the creation of an anarcho-communist Mexican Republic in California, Texas, Arizona and New Mexico.

A cartoon entitled "Volunteering in Mexico" portrayed Mexican peasants as lazy. The Mexican army was getting volunteers by lassoing, drugging, and knocking out their “volunteers.” This cartoon stigmatizes the Mexicans as lazy and unpatriotic, just the opposite of the good American, hard working, competent, and undyingly patriotic.

By late June tensions between Mexico and the United States began to peak. A virtual state of war existed between the two countries (the semi-independent state of Yucatan actually declared war) and the United States withdrew all its consuls from Mexico. The Mexican government threatened to arrest any American found in that country. Sentiment in favor of war was high, as a visiting Texas rancher commented to the Vanguard. “We’ve simply got to teach those fellows a lesson…Mexico needs a good housecleaning and she’s going to get it…” The California National Guard was mobilized, including the local Company E. Mexicans living in Southern California were now treated as a potential 5th column. Both Venice and Santa Monica pasted restrictive urgency ordinances against the Mexicans.

Venice and Santa Monica police departments will keep a strict watch over the large bay Mexican population. When Mexicans in their own country are reported to be torturing Americans, at least police in our own cities can take steps to prevent intoxicated Mexicans form buying arms and ammunition and from going out on a little bandit mission of their own. No liquor should be sold Mexicans, and Chief Watson of Venice and Chief Watson of Venice and Chief Ferguson of Santa Monica will see that the order is strictly enforced. With perhaps 75,000 Mexicans in Los Angeles county, a riot would result in the loss of many lives and the destruction of much property. Withholding liquor and firearms from the Mexicans will be the best preventative of crime.

Not all Mexicans in Venice or Santa Monica were treated in a stereotypical way. Jose Lopez was one such individual who “realized what many white-skinned Americans have failed to, that his first duty is to his country…” Lopez ignored the idea “prevalent among those of foreign blood, that the boys of Company E do not desire them to join….” and became a recruit in the California National Guard. The Vanguard concluded: “It has been assured that all American citizens of any birth whatever…with clean habits are welcomed at all times by every member of the company.” Implied in this statement was that the typical Mexican failed in the opinion of many Venetians to meet the criteria of “clean habits.”

Another exception to the Venetian stereotype was J. Gonzales. This visitor from Juarez planned to spend the summer with his family at the beaches until the “unpleasantness existing in his section of the country has blown over…”

This apparently wealthy individual with assumedly clean habits, also stood above the typical drunken Mexican. The Vanguard treated him in a manner of relative equality, using none of its typical inflammatory words to describe the “unpleasantness” which Mr. Gonzales was avoiding. All this suggests that the economically successful individual was not meant to be included in the stereotype of the typical Mexican.

But in general the Vanguard projects the impression that Mexicans were undesirable elements, frequently arrested, and forced to leave town. There is no indication given that Mexicans living in the American southwest were the victims of racial prejudice and economic exploitation, and no recognition or appreciation of the growing spirit of national pride among them is apparent.

Eduardo Ramos was arrested (called Ed) on a charge of drunkenness. According to the paper he was found at 3 a.m. “entertaining” a group of “his countrymen” with a speech. Fined ten dollars and ten days in jail, he was quoted as saying, “I’ll kill every American that I can find in Mexico when I get back there.” It is not known whether Ramos was connected with the Magon brothers. The only glimmer of recognition in the Vanguard that the revolution going on in Mexico was justified came when it reported the comments of a visitor to Venice just returned from Mexico. “As soon as the middle and peon classes can be assured of their rights, warfare now in progress will die down.”

Some native Americans lived in and around the Venice area. A group of Ojibaway Indians had been brought in as actors in the locally produced Longfellow play Hiawatha. This was a revolving group of Sioux Indians from the Dakotas at Inceville in the Santa Monica Mountains. Inceville was a small town, part of a ranch owned by the Ince Movie Co. and it was there that many early westerns were made. The Indians lived in the town there and were generally well received by the population of the Santa Monica Bay. When the first Sioux Indian child was born on the ranch to Chief Thunder Bull a “huge blaze could be seen in the mountains” announcing the event. Indians also participated in such local events as the Los Angeles “preparedness parade” designed to show popular support for the government against Germany and Mexico. That political consciousness among native Americans was still alive was demonstrated when they carried a banner in the parade which read: “You people wouldn’t be here now if we had been prepared.”

But native Americans were also stereotyped. For instance they were typically credited with drunkenness. Ernest Swallow of the 101 movie ranch was taken into custody in Santa Monica “after imbibing too much firewater.” This was also the reason that V. A. Brooks “this morning shipped back to the Rosebud reservation in South Dakota a part of 22 Indians who had been used in the moving picture camp in the Santa Ynez Canyon. Mr. Brooks intends to bring in a bunch of new Sioux and Pawnee Indians who are not so well acquainted with white men and their ways.” The newspaper reported without comment that “One of the sights of the street was a quartet of gaily bedecked Indian squaws riding about the city in a big seven-seater car with a paleface driver behind the wheel.” A white person chauffeuring Indian women around, and Indian women riding in a car worth considerably more than most people in Venice could afford?

Doc Sam was an Eskimo who lived in Santa Monica. He was the last remaining member of a group that had come to visit Venice, perhaps as part of a side show, in 1915. Arrested for vagrancy and drunkenness in Santa Monica, he became the handyman of the local jail. Generally “a peaceful and harmless” individual, he had a “highly cultivated taste for liquor” and while under the influence of alcohol, he was suspected of “molesting children and frightening women by his queer actions and gestures.”

There were Jews living in Venice but they were not often mentioned, and it is difficult to judge if anti-Semitism existed. But the existence of anti-Semitism throughout the world was brought home to a particular Jewish family when part of it was destroyed in a Russian pogram. Mr. H. Fisher of Venice was located by the Jewish Relief Society of New York which informed him that his mother, brother, and sister in law had been beaten to death while out walking. Five children survived who Mr. Fisher agreed to sponsor into the United States. The children were scheduled to arrive in Venice in 15 months.

Racial stereotyping went beyond nationalities to include racial groups. In general British, Canadians, Irish and Germans were well liked and appreciated. Latins were often stereotyped as hot-blooded and hot-headed. For example in the reporting of crimes, the crimes themselves were not as significant as the fact that they were committed by persons who were not white, Anglo-Saxon, protestant. This kind of reporting made the stories more attractive reading, because the average reader did not associate the criminals with his culture or society. For example when Greeks got into minor trouble with the law their names were often not mentioned, only the problem. “A Greek restaurant proprietor,” a “Greek janitor,” a “Greek laborer.”

Racial prejudice was promoted by the Vanguard. Terms such as coons, Greaser and Chink often appeared. Venice was predominantly a white, Anglo-Saxon, protestant community. California was known as a melting pot, a place where a new start could be made. Population was increasing, and many colored and ethnic groups were mentioned in Venice. As long as they were clean, thrifty, and light skinned, as long as they stayed out of sight, they were desirable. Dark skins, low-economic status, and any suspicion of crime no matter how minor caused this WASP community to become upset.

The general sentiment of Venetians with regard to minorities was probably best echoed by City Attorney Byron Hanna. When asked why he thought Venice needed a charter, he talked about the growth of the city, new problems, and that he “hoped Venice and her people would look towards the future in that respect: that the right of local self-government was as dear to the Anglo-Saxon people as liberty itself, and that when we are ready for a charter we will lay aside all factional feeling and approach it in the right spirit.” Obviously “laying aside all factional feeling” in the pursuit of democracy did not include eliminating racial prejudice and the hatred and injustice which it bred, not just in Venice, but throughout the country.




(mentioned on this page - additional information comes from Russell Potter, who writes,

He appeared at an "Eskimo Village" on the pier at Santa Monica from mid-summer of 1915 to the burning of the pier, which destroyed the exhibit, in December of 1915. He appeared alongside several other Eskimos, most of them from Labrador, in an attraction which included "Nancy Columbia" and her family.

I believe that "Doc Sam" may have been brought to to the U.S. by Captain Amos M. Baber in 1908, appeared with Baber's traveling Eskimo Village show for six months, then at the Alaska-Yukon-Pacific Expo in Seattle in 1909. Where he was between 1909 and 1915 is one thing I'm working on; where he was after 1915 is another.


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