Chavez Ravine is a shallow L-shaped canyon in Los Angeles, California. It sits in a large promontory of hills north of downtown Los Angeles, next to Major League Baseball's Dodger Stadium. Chavez Ravine was named for Julian Chavez, a Los Angeles councilman in the 19th century who originally purchased the land in the Elysian Park area.
Chavez Ravine was named for Julian Chavez, the first recorded land owner. He was born in New Mexico and moved to Los Angeles in the early 1830s. He quickly became a local leader. In 1844, Chavez purchased 83 acres of the long, narrow valley northwest of the city. There are no records of what Chavez did on his land, but during the 1850s and 1880s there were smallpox epidemics; Chavez Canyon was the location of a "pest house" which cared for Chinese-Americans and Mexican-Americans suffering from the disease. The land was very rugged which prevented much development of the area. However the area did provide an important watershed and part was used by the Los Angeles Water Company for a canal bringing water from what is now Griffith Park and storing it in a reservoir (today called Buena Vista Reservoir) in Reservoir Ravine. Some of Chavez Canyon and the surrounding hills became Elysian Park in 1886. That same year, two brick manufacturers moved into Chavez Ravine and began blasting operations in the hillsides.
By the early 1900s, in the hills above and around the ravine, a semi-rural Mexican-American community had grown up. Eventually, three distinct neighborhoods formed: Bishop, La Loma and Palo Verde, mostly on the ridges between the neighboring ravines. In 1913 a progressive lawyer named Marshall Stimson subsidized the movement of around 250 Mexican-Americans to these communities from the floodplain of the nearby Los Angeles River. There was a local grocery store, a local church, and Palo Verde Elementary. There was a nearby brick factory which caused local problems from the smoke and dust released. In 1926 the residents of Chavez Ravine organized to shut the company down. On August 20, 1926, the Los Angeles City Council unanimously adopted an ordinance prohibiting the blasting and zoned the area around Chavez Ravine for residential use.
Chavez Ravine was made up of the three mostly Mexican-American communities of La Loma, Palo Verde, and Bishop. In the 1940s, the area was a poor, though cohesive, Mexican-American community. Many families lived there because of housing discrimination in other parts of Los Angeles. With the population of Los Angeles expanding, Chavez Ravine was viewed as a prime, underutilized location. The city began to label the area as "blighted" and thus ripe for redevelopment. Through a vote, the Housing Authority of the City of Los Angeles, with the assistance of federal funds from the Housing Act of 1949, was designated the task to construct public housing, in large part to address the severe post-World War II housing shortage. Prominent architects Richard Neutra and Robert Alexander developed a plan for "Elysian Park Heights." The city had already relocated many of the residents of Chavez Ravine when the entire project came to a halt. Fear of communism was sweeping the United States and loud voices in Los Angeles cried that the housing project smacked of socialism.
The land for Dodger Stadium was purchased from some local owners/inhabitants in the early 1950s by the City of Los Angeles, using eminent domain, with funds from the Federal Housing Act of 1949. The city had planned to develop the Elysian Park Heights public housing project, which was to include two dozen 13-story buildings and more than 160 two-story townhouses, in addition to newly-rebuilt playgrounds and schools.
Los Angeles-based author Mike Davis, in his controversial, often polemical, history of the city, City of Quartz, discussed the process of gradually convincing Chavez Ravine homeowners to sell. Davis asserted that with nearly all of the original Spanish-speaking homeowners initially unwilling to do so, "developers", representing the city and its public housing authority, resorted to offering immediate cash payments, distributed through their Spanish-speaking agents. Once the first sales had been completed, it is said that remaining homeowners were offered lesser amounts of money, allegedly to create a sense of community panic that people would not receive fair compensation, or that they would be left as one of the few holdouts. Some residents continued to resist, despite the pressure being placed upon them by the "developers," resulting in the Battle of Chavez Ravine, an unsuccessful ten-year struggle by a small number of remaining residents of Chavez Ravine to maintain control of their property, after the substantial majority of the area had been transferred to public ownership.
Before construction of the Elysian Park Heights project could begin, the local political climate changed greatly when Norris Poulson was elected mayor of Los Angeles in 1953. Poulson opposed the provision of public housing, claiming that it was "un-American", and support for projects like Elysian Park Heights faded. Following protracted negotiations, the City of Los Angeles was able to repurchase the Chavez Ravine property from the Federal Housing Authority at a drastically reduced price, with the stipulation that the land be used for a public purpose.
Following the "baseball referendum", promoted by the Taxpayers Committee for Yes on Baseball, which was approved by Los Angeles voters on June 3, 1958, the City made the controversial decision to trade 352 acres (142 ha) of land at Chavez Ravine to the Brooklyn Dodgers and team's owner Walter O'Malley, in exchange for land around the minor league park Wrigley Field, with the aim of providing incentives for migration to Los Angeles. From 1958 to 1961, the Dodgers played their home games at the Los Angeles Memorial Coliseum.
During the years when the Los Angeles Angels were tenants of the Dodgers (1962 through 1965), the Angels referred to the stadium as "Chavez Ravine Stadium" or simply "Chavez Ravine". Los Angeles City Council designated the property as "Dodgertown" in October 2008. The United States Postal Service assigned postal code "Dodgertown, CA 90090" in April 2009.
A number of structures from Chavez Ravine were spared demolition and sold by the developers of Dodger Stadium to nearby Universal Studios for one dollar apiece. Universal moved the structures to its back lot where they subsequently appeared in various Universal productions, most notably the 1962 film To Kill a Mockingbird. The house of Atticus Finch, for example, was an erstwhile Chavez Ravine home.
Most of Chavez Ravine remains in Elysian Park where the Chavez Ravine Arboretum still stands. The arboretum was founded in 1893 by the Los Angeles Horticultural Society where trees were added to through to the 1920s. Most of the Arboretum's original trees are still standing and many are the oldest and largest of their kind in California and even the United States. Further south in the ravine is Barlow Respiratory Hospital which was founded in 1902 and continues to treat patients today. At the open end of the ravine immediately adjacent to Dodger Stadium is the Naval and Marine Corps Reserve Center which was built in 1937 but is today a training facility, Frank Hotchkin Memorial Training Center, for the Los Angeles City Fire Department.
Chavez Ravine,1949: A Los Angeles Story (1999) collects interviews and photos by Don Normark documenting the Ravine's culture at the time. Chávez Ravine is an album recorded by Ry Cooder in 2005, as a soundtrack to a PBS documentary directed by Jordan Mechner. The film makes use of the Normark photos in telling the story of how a Mexican American community was destroyed to make way for a low-income public housing project.
The Provisional City (2000) recounts the postwar history of housing in Los Angeles by Dana Cuff, and devotes a section of the book to the politics of transforming Chavez Ravine into a modern housing development designed by Richard Neutra and Robert Alexander, and the demise of that utopian plan.
"Chávez Ravine: A Record by Ry Cooder" is the twelfth studio album by Ry Cooder. It is the first concept album and historical album by Ry Cooder which tells the story of Chávez Ravine. Sung in Spanish and English, Cooder sought out musicians from the era and the place, including the late Pachuco boogie boss Don Tosti, Lalo Guerrero, Ersi Arvizu, and Little Willie G., all of whom appear with Joachim Cooder, Juliette & Carla Commagere, Jim Keltner, Flaco Jimenez, Mike Elizondo, Gil Bernal, Ledward Kaapana, Joe Rotunde, Rosella Arvizu, and others. Chávez Ravine was nominated for "Grammy Award for Best Contemporary Folk Album" in 2006.
A portion of the Great Wall of Los Angeles, a mural by Judith F. Baca in the Tujunga Wash Drainage Canal in San Fernando Valley, California, is titled "The Division of the Barrios and Chavez Ravine." It depicts families separated by freeways and the Dodger Stadium in the air like a spaceship.
In 2003, the Urban Performance Troupe Culture Clash, comprising three writers and performers Richard Montoya, Ric Salinas and Herbert Siguenza, premiered a stage show titled Chávez Ravine at the Mark Taper Forum.
The 1952 crime drama film Without Warning! has several scenes that take place in Chavez Ravine.
At the end of the Twilight Zone episode "The Whole Truth" (1961) Rod Serling says "be particularly careful in explaining to the boss about your grandmother's funeral when you are actually at Chavez Ravine watching the Dodgers."
"Chavez Ravine" was mentioned as a suspect during a "minute mysteries" segment of the 1960s TV show Fractured Flickers.
A group of American Indians gathered overnight to drink, dance and sing on a Chavez Ravine hilltop in the 1961 movie "The Exiles".
"Chavez Ravine" is mentioned in episode "Community" of the TV police drama Southland when a fraud victim describes how he was "born on home plate" and lived in his family home in Chavez Ravine until May 9, 1959 when the city came in and bulldozed his home to make way for Dodger Stadium.
In the Amazon TV series "Bosch", Police Commissioner Bradley Walker, played by John Getz, states that "My father bulldozed Bunker Hill so that lawyers could have an ocean view, *his* father destroyed Chavez Ravine for low cost housing he knew would never happen." 
The proposal to give the Dodgers a 300-acre baseball stadium site next to Chavez Ravine appeared to be winning in Los Angeles' municipal election tonight.
Los Angeles, April 9, 1962 (United Press International) Eager citizens, proud civic leaders and jubilant baseball dignitaries today joined to dedicate the Los Angeles Dodgers' new multimillion-dollar 56,000-seat stadium in Chavez Ravine.
The 1962 Los Angeles Angels season involved the Angels finishing 3rd in the American League with a record of 86 wins and 76 losses, ten games behind the World Series Champion New York Yankees. The 1962 Angels are one of only two teams to achieve a winning record in its second season of existence in the history of Major League Baseball (the other would be the 1999 Arizona Diamondbacks of the National League, who finished as NL West Champions at 100–62). The 1962 Angels was the first Angels team to reside at Dodger Stadium, called Chavez Ravine by the team.1965 California Angels season
The 1965 California Angels season was the fifth year of play for the American Major League Baseball franchise. The 1965 Angels finished seventh in the American League with a record of 75 wins and 87 losses, putting them 27 games behind the AL Champion Minnesota Twins. It was also the final season for the franchise in the city of Los Angeles before moving to their new stadium in nearby Anaheim for the following season. In their fourth and last year as tenants at Chávez Ravine, the Angels drew only 566,727 fans, eighth in the ten-team Junior Circuit and almost two million fans fewer than their landlords, the Dodgers, who were en route to the 1965 world championship.Battle of Chavez Ravine
The Battle of Chavez Ravine refers to controversy surrounding government acquisition of land largely owned by Mexican-Americans in Los Angeles' Chavez Ravine. The efforts to repossess the land, which lasted approximately ten years (1951–1961), eventually resulted in the removal of the entire population of Chavez Ravine from land on which Dodger Stadium was constructed. The majority of the Chavez Ravine land was initially acquired by the City of Los Angeles to make way for proposed public housing. The public housing plan that had been advanced as politically "progressive" and had resulted in the removal of the Mexican-American landowners of Chavez Ravine was abandoned after the passage of a public referendum prohibiting the original housing proposal and the election of a conservative Los Angeles mayor opposed to public housing. By 1958, new plans were advanced to construct Dodger Stadium on the site, and in 1959, the Los Angeles County Sherriff's Department forcefully removed the last residents occupying Chavez Ravine.Center Theatre Group
Center Theatre Group is a non-profit arts organization located in Los Angeles, California. It is one of the largest theatre companies in the nation, programming subscription seasons year-round at the Mark Taper Forum, the Ahmanson Theatre and the Kirk Douglas Theatre.
Center Theatre Group is led by Artistic Director Michael Ritchie and Managing Director/CEO Meghan Pressman.
Me and Bessie
9 to 5
Angels in America
Bloody Bloody Andrew Jackson
Children of a Lesser God
Flower Drum Song (revival)
Smokey Joe's Cafe
The Drowsy Chaperone
Bengal Tiger at the Baghdad Zoo
Water and Power
Sleeping Beauty Wakes
Chavez RavineChavez Ravine Arboretum
The Chavez Ravine Arboretum, in Elysian Park, just north of Dodger Stadium, at 929 Academy Road, Los Angeles, California, contains more than 100 varieties of trees from around the world, including what are believed to be the oldest and largest Cape Chestnut, Kauri, and Tipu trees in the United States. Admission to the arboretum is free.
The Arboretum was founded in 1893 by the Los Angeles Horticultural Society, and planting of rare trees continued through the 1920s. Most of the original trees are still standing. The Arboretum was declared a Los Angeles Historic-Cultural Monument in 1967.
Trees in the Arboretum include:
Acer campestre (field maple)
Acer negundo (box elder)
Acer saccharinum (silver maple)
Aesculus x carnea
Alnus rhombifolia (white alder)
Angophora costata (rose apple)
Araucaria bidwillii (bunya pine)
Archontophoenix cunninghamiana (king palm)
Bauhinia forficata (Brazilian orchid tree)
Bauhinia variegata (orchid tree)
Betula nigra (black birch)
Brachychiton acerifolius (Illiwarra flame tree)
Brachychiton acerifolius (Herman hybrid)
Brachychiton populneus (Kurrajong)
Brahea (Hesper palm)
Brahea armata (Mexican blue palm)
Brahea edulis (Guadalupe palm)
Butia capitata (jelly palm)
Calocedrus decurrens (California incense cedar)
Calodendrum capense (Cape chestnut)
Ceiba speciosa (silk floss tree)
Dracaena draco (Canary Islands dragon tree)
Ehretia anacua (sandpaper tree)
Eriobotrya japonica (loquat)
Erythrina (coral tree)
Erythrina coralloides (naked coral tree)
Erythrina falcata (Brazilian coral tree)
Erythrina humeana (dwarf kaffirboom)
Eucalyptus camaldulensis (river red gum)
Eucalyptus cladocalyx (sugar gum)
Eucalyptus robusta (swamp mahogany)
Eucalyptus rudis (flooded gum)
Eucalyptus viminalis (manna gum)
Ficus (fig tree)
Ficus religiosa (sacred fig)
Handroanthus impetiginosus (pink lapacho)
Jubaea chilensis (Chilean wine palm)
Juglans nigra (eastern black walnut)
Lagerstroemia indica (crepe myrtle)
Liquidambar formosana (Chinese sweet gum)
Livistona australis (cabbage-tree palm)
Livistona chinensis (Chinese fan palm)
Metasequoia glyptostroboides (dawn redwood)
Metrosideros excelsa (pōhutukawa)
Nyssa sylvatica (black tupelo)
Phoenix canariensis (Canary Island date palm)
Phoenix dactylifera (date palm)
Phoenix reclinata (hybrid)
Phoenix roebelenii x rupicola
Phoenix rupicola (cliff date palm)
Phytolacca dioica (ombú)
Pinus canariensis (Canary Island pine)
Pinus edulis (Colorado pinyon)
Pinus halepensis (aleppo pine)
Pinus thunbergii (Japanese black pine)
Pittosporum tenuifolium (black matipo)
Plinia cauliflora (jabuticaba)
Psidium guajava (apple guava)
Quercus agrifolia (coast live oak)
Quercus alba (white oak)
Quercus cerris (turkey oak)
Quercus coccinea (scarlet oak)
Quercus macrocarpa (bur oak)
Quercus palustris (pin oak)
Quercus rubra (northern red oak)
Quercus suber (cork oak)
Quercus virginiana (southern live oak)
Rhapidophyllym hystrix (needle palm)
Rhapis excelsa (broadleaf lady palm)
Sabal causiarum (Puerto Rican hat palm)
Salix babylonica (weeping willow)
Schinus (pepper tree)
Schinus molle (Peruvian pepper)
Schinus polygamus (Cabrera Hardee peppertree)
Syagrus romanzoffiana (queen palm)
Trachycarpus fortunei (windmill palm)
Tristaniopsis laurina (water gum)
Ulmus americana (American elm)
Umbellularia californica (California bay laurel)
Washingtonia filifera (desert fan)
Washingtonia robusta (Mexican fan palm)
Zelkova serrata (Japanese zelkova)Chávez Ravine (album)
Chávez Ravine: A Record by Ry Cooder is the twelfth studio album by Ry Cooder. It is the first concept album and historical album by Ry Cooder which tells the story of Chávez Ravine, a Mexican-American community demolished in the 1950s in order to build public housing. The housing was never built. Ultimately the Brooklyn Dodgers built a stadium on the site as part of their move to Los Angeles.
Chávez Ravine was nominated for "Grammy Award for Best Contemporary Folk Album" in 2006.Chávez Ravine (disambiguation)
Chávez Ravine may refer to:
Chavez Ravine, the area in Los Angeles, California, where Dodger Stadium is located
A nickname for Dodger Stadium itself
The Battle of Chavez Ravine, controversy surrounding the 1951–1961 government acquisition of land in Chavez Ravine largely owned by Mexican Americans
Chavez Ravine, a 1992 film by Norberto Barba
Chávez Ravine: A Los Angeles Story:, a 2003 documentary by Jordan Mechner
Chávez Ravine (album), a 2005 concept album by musician Ry CooderDodger Stadium
Dodger Stadium in the Elysian Park neighborhood of Los Angeles, California, is the home field of Major League Baseball's Los Angeles Dodgers. Opened 57 years ago on April 10, 1962, it was constructed in less than three years at a cost of US$23 million.
It is the oldest ballpark in MLB west of the Mississippi River, and third-oldest overall, after Fenway Park in Boston (1912) and Wrigley Field in Chicago (1914), and is the world's largest baseball stadium by seat capacity. Often referred to as a "pitcher's ballpark", the stadium has seen twelve no-hitters, two of which were perfect games.
The stadium hosted the Major League Baseball All-Star Game in 1980—and will host in 2020—as well as games of 10 World Series (1963, 1965, 1966, 1974, 1977, 1978, 1981, 1988, 2017, and 2018). It also hosted the semifinals and finals of the 2009 and 2017 World Baseball Classics. It also hosted exhibition baseball during the 1984 Summer Olympics. It will also host baseball and softball during the 2028 Summer Olympics.
The stadium hosted a soccer tournament on August 3, 2013 featuring four clubs, the hometown team Los Angeles Galaxy, and Europe's Real Madrid, Everton, and Juventus. The Los Angeles Kings and Anaheim Ducks played a regular season game in 2014 as part of the NHL Stadium Series.Frank Wilkinson
Frank Wilkinson (August 16, 1914 – January 2, 2006) was an American civil liberties activist who served as Executive Director of the National Committee Against Repressive Legislation and the First Amendment Foundation (both predecessors to the Defending Dissent Foundation).I, Flathead
I, Flathead: The Songs of Kash Buk and the Klowns is the fourteenth studio album by Ry Cooder. It is the final concept album by Ry Cooder. It is the third in his "California trilogy", which began with Chávez Ravine (2005) and My Name Is Buddy (2007).The Deluxe Edition of the album is accompanied by a 104-page hardback book which included a CD in paper pocket, a novella (on 97 pages) and song lyrics.
The title is a play on the Isaac Asimov novel "I, Robot", but the flathead in question is the Ford Flathead engine.John C. Holland
John C. Holland (1893–1970) was one of the longest-serving Los Angeles City Council members, for 24 years from 1943 to 1967, and was known for his losing fight against bringing the Los Angeles Dodgers to Chavez Ravine and for his reputation as a watchdog over the city treasury.Jordan Mechner
Jordan Mechner (born June 4, 1964) is an American video game designer, author, screenwriter, and filmmaker. He is best known for designing and programming the Broderbund Apple II games Karateka and Prince of Persia in the 1980s, the latter of which grew into a multi-platform franchise.Julian A. Chavez
Julian Antonio Chavez (January 7, 1808 – July 25, 1879) was a rancher, landowner and elected official in early Los Angeles, California, who served multiple terms on the Los Angeles Common Council (the forerunner to the present-day City Council) and the Los Angeles County Board of Supervisors. His land holdings included the area later known as Chavez Ravine.My Name Is Buddy
My Name Is Buddy: Another Record by Ry Cooder is the thirteenth studio album by Ry Cooder. It is the second social-political concept album by Ry Cooder. Cooder has described it as the second in a trilogy that began with Chávez Ravine and concluded with I, Flathead. The album is packaged in a small booklet that includes a brief story and drawing to accompany each song. Both the songs and the stories relate tales from the viewpoint of the characters, Buddy Red Cat, Lefty Mouse, and Reverend Tom Toad. The liner notes ask listeners/readers to join them as they "Journey through time and space in days of labor, big bosses, farm failures, strikes, company cops, sundown towns, hobos, and trains... the America of yesteryear."Proposed domed Brooklyn Dodgers stadium
A proposed domed stadium for the Brooklyn Dodgers, designed by Buckminster Fuller, was to replace Ebbets Field for the Brooklyn Dodgers to allow them to stay in New York City. The Dodgers instead moved to Chavez Ravine in Los Angeles. First announced in the early 1950s, the envisioned structure would have seated 52,000 people and been the first domed stadium in the world, opening roughly a decade before Houston's Astrodome. The stadium, in Fort Greene, Brooklyn, would have been located at the northeast corner of Flatbush Avenue and Atlantic Avenue, on the site of the Atlantic Terminal. It would have cost $6 million to build and been privately financed. It was never built.
The general area eventually did become a sports venue, because Barclays Center was built across the street to the south from the Atlantic Terminal, in neighboring Pacific Park.Richard Montoya
Richard Montoya is a Chicano actor, director, producer, screenwriter, playwright, comedian, and co-founding member of the San Francisco based performance troupe Culture Clash. His work in theatre is largely comedy-based and centers around ideas of racism, immigration, discrimination, and identity in Latin-American communities. He follows in the steps of his father, famous activist José Montoya, and is known for creating social and political change through a variety of artistic expressions.Rosalind Wiener Wyman
Rosalind Wiener Wyman (born October 4, 1930) is a California Democratic political figure who was the youngest person ever elected to the Los Angeles City Council and the second woman to serve there. She was influential in bringing the Brooklyn Dodgers from New York to Chavez Ravine, Los Angeles.Three Cool Cats
"Three Cool Cats" is a 1958 song written by Jerry Leiber and Mike Stoller. It was originally recorded by The Coasters and released as the B-side of their hit single, "Charlie Brown.""Three Cool Cats" was one of the fifteen songs recorded by The Beatles for their Decca Records audition on New Year's Day in 1962 in London. The Beatles' cover version featured George Harrison's vocals and Pete Best on drums. The Beatles' manager, Brian Epstein, personally chose this and the fourteen other audition numbers from the band's Merseyside dance hall and rock club repertoire. The recording was included on the Beatles' Anthology 1. The group also performed this song several times during the Get Back/Let It Be Sessions of January 1969. None of these have ever been officially released by EMI.
There have been many other covers of this song. Richard Anthony recorded it in French as Nouvelle vague (1958). It appears on the 2005 Ry Cooder album Chávez Ravine, with vocals performed by Little Willie G (Willie Garcia). Garage rock band The 220.127.116.11's covered the song for their 1996 EP Bomb the Twist. It is also featured on Stand Out/Fit In, the 2007 studio album by The Basics, as well as on their 2010 live album. The song is also heard in the 2016 film Nine Lives.Vincent Valdez
Vincent Valdez (born 1977) is an American artist born in San Antonio, Texas who focuses on painting, drawing, and printmaking. His artwork often emphasizes themes of social justice, memory, and ignored or under-examined historical narratives. Valdez completed his B.F.A. at the Rhode Island School of Design in 2000. He lives and works in Houston, Texas and is represented by the David Shelton Gallery. Valdez's work has been exhibited at The Museum of Fine Arts Houston, The Ford Foundation, The Los Angeles County Museum of Art (LACMA), The National Portrait Gallery, The Blanton Museum of Art, The Parsons School of Design, Paris, France, and the Fundacion Osde Buenos Aires.