The Balloon Route, Los Angeles, 1902

The Balloon Route, Los Angeles, 1902

from 160.00

The Balloon Route: A Tourist's Trolley Trip Through Early-1900s Los Angeles

A daylong excursion called the “Balloon Route” from downtown Los Angeles to the beach cities and back again. The trip, billed as “the only ocean voyage on wheels,” covered 101 miles for 100 cents.

This route map is pulled from a rare 1902 book titled, “Santa Monica Fire Department, Souvenir Book of Santa Monica, 1902”

ON METAL, High Gloss Surface, Metal Print , Float Mount Hangers
(Prints float 1/2" off wall), 1/8" Rounded Corners

PRINTS WILL TYPICALLY SHIP WITHIN 2-4 WEEKS.

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Over one hundred years ago, volunteer firemen sold a book titled, “Santa Monica Fire Department, Souvenir Book of Santa Monica, 1902” door to door. Legend has it that the newly-established fire department promised to fight fires for those who purchased the book, but made no such promise to those who didn’t. 

I first discovered the book years ago in the house I grew up in, which was also owned by Santa Monica Mayor Edmond S. Gillette in the 1930’s. The 1902 book contained 110 interior and exterior photographs of houses and businesses in what we know today as western Santa Monica and a few images from other locations around Los Angeles.