Lanterman House

Lanterman House
4420 Encinas Drive
La Cañada Flintridge,
California 91011-3313
(818) 790-1421














The Lanterman House Archives

The Lanterman House History Center and Archives makes available documents and photographs pertaining to the development of La Canada and Flintridge, beginning with their independent identities as a part of unincorporated Los Angeles County, through their merger and transition to cityhood in 1976, and continuing into the present. Another large part of the collection pertains to the Lanterman family, the founders of La Canada Flintridge, including the two careers of Frank D. Lanterman, first as a theater organist and later as a renowned State Assemblyman. The History Center has also provided space to the Historical Society of the Crescenta Valley for its archival collections.

In recent years, the Lanterman House has become the center for historical research on La Canada Flintridge and the greater Crescenta-Canada Valley. The bulk of the early collection was transferred from the La Canada Flintridge Historical Society after it disbanded in 1999. Since then, the Lanterman House has continued to grow the collection, adding to it such unique materials as the historical records of the La Canada Unified School District, the photographs of pioneer Charles Pate, the papers of local historian and author June Dougherty, and the bound volumes and photo morgue of the La Canada Valley Sun newspaper dating back to its beginning in 1946.

The History Center and Archives benefit from an ongoing oral history program. The DVDs that are a result of these interviews offer the personal viewpoints of knowledgeable city residents on the history of the community and its institutions. Among the individuals interviewed so far: former Superintendent of Schools Donald Ziehl, longtime residents Margaret Moses and Virginia Robertson, and Bob Covey who had a forty-year association with JPL.

The History Center and Archives also maintains a register of historically and architecturally significant buildings located in La Canada Flintridge.

The Lanterman family archives begins with the arrival in the La Canada Valley of Jacob and Amoretta Lanterman and their son Roy in the 1870s and ends in 1987 when Roy's son Lloyd Lanterman, the last surviving member of the family, died and left the family home to the City of La Canada Flintridge. Since the Lanterman family tended never to throw anything away, the amount of material is tremendous, ranging from Dr. Roy Lanterman's medical records and his wife Emily's recipes and club activities to their son's school work and adult interests in music and steam power. The family's real estate and development business was managed by the Lanterman Estate Company, the records of which offer special insight into the community's early development.

Of unique value is Frank Lanterman's sheet-music collection which he amassed during his career as a theater organist in the 1920s and 30s. Consisting of over 4,700 works, mostly popular songs and piano/organ transcriptions, the collection is in very good condition and offers historians a sweeping view of the development of American musical tastes in the early 20th century. Also worth noting is the collection of song-lyric glass slides that were once projected on theater screens for audience sing-alongs.

Frank's tenure as State assemblyman from 1951 to 1978 is documented in another special collection. He authored a number of important bills regarding water rights and reforms in the treatment of the developmentally disabled. These records complement other Lanterman collections found at USC and the California State Archives.

The History Center and Archives at the Lanterman House is located at 4420 Encinas Drive in La Canada Flintridge. We are open Tuesday and Thursday afternoons from 1 pm to 4 pm, but we recommend you call before visiting. The History Center and Archives is also available at other times by appointment. Please call the Lanterman House at 818-790-1421






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