Preserving local history is challenging.
When it comes to regulating period signs and signage, we've found that what is guised under the concept of "safety" is often more in reality, because it's not attractive, by someone's standard.
We've sought to celebrate the many different businesses in this town and the signage that represented them, especially in the spirit of how they contributed to the fabric of the city. Not every business that made the cut on the city's list of meritorious signs is featured, but there was a personal connection to many of them.
Countless hours were spent in the basement of the Los Angeles County Deeds office in Norwalk, the archives in downtown Los Angeles, and pouring over the Santa Monica telephone books (going back to the 1890s!) in the Santa Monica Library as well as first person interviews with available owners and/or descendants.
With the exception of Arby's, all of these were local businesses, people trying to serve this community.
Many of these signs and businesses are gone now but hopefully will live on through this book.