Our newest special newsletter edition for subscribers is out now. (We also have a free newsletter packed with local historic preservation news and musings.) This month, we take a deep dive into a remarkable artifact held in the research collection of the Pasadena Museum of History: local Fox movie theater manager Les Clark’s personal scrapbook documenting early 1930s promotions at the United Artists – Pasadena, Bard’s Colorado, California Theatre – Glendale and Pasadena Theatre.

United Artists Theatre, Pasadena, designed by Walker and Eisen, photo by Mott Studios (ca. 1931), California State Library.

It’s one thing to watch classic movies, and to read about the old school promotional machine. But to flip through a scrapbook of artifacts and images collected in real time is to understand the excitement and creativity of the young industry, and how the movies permeated every aspect of American life. You can almost smell the excitement, and it will change the way you see Old Town Pasadena.

It’s $10/month or $100/year to read all the locked newsletter posts, including today’s deep dive into the scrapbook that features King Kong, the Marx Brothers, Barbara Stanwyck, Bebe Daniels, Dick Powell, Joan Crawford, Baby LeRoy, Claudette Colbert, fake corpses, live primates, aged tea leaves, free cars, child labor and prototype electric wheelchairs. The free newsletter will be out Friday, packed with all the Los Angeles historic preservation news you can use.