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A sneak preview of 'Becoming LA' at the Natural History Museum




A team of City Planning Department model makers, drafters and architects surveyed downtown Los Angeles between 1938 and 1940 and built a model, of which this is a small part, at the Natural History Museum's new exhibit,
A team of City Planning Department model makers, drafters and architects surveyed downtown Los Angeles between 1938 and 1940 and built a model, of which this is a small part, at the Natural History Museum's new exhibit, "Becoming Los Angeles," opening July 14, 2013.
Todd Johnson/KPCC
A team of City Planning Department model makers, drafters and architects surveyed downtown Los Angeles between 1938 and 1940 and built a model, of which this is a small part, at the Natural History Museum's new exhibit,
Museum patrons can look through a tube to watch a video that explains how cows (and their poop) helped to change L.A.'s natural environment.
Todd Johnson/KPCC
A team of City Planning Department model makers, drafters and architects surveyed downtown Los Angeles between 1938 and 1940 and built a model, of which this is a small part, at the Natural History Museum's new exhibit,
The thousands of cattle that roamed freely and grazed throughout the Los Angeles basin left a lasting impact on the natural environment.
Todd Johnson/KPCC
A team of City Planning Department model makers, drafters and architects surveyed downtown Los Angeles between 1938 and 1940 and built a model, of which this is a small part, at the Natural History Museum's new exhibit,
Souvenir water that was bottled on November 5, 1913, from the opening of the Los Angeles Aqueduct.
Todd Johnson/KPCC
A team of City Planning Department model makers, drafters and architects surveyed downtown Los Angeles between 1938 and 1940 and built a model, of which this is a small part, at the Natural History Museum's new exhibit,
A museum exhibit displays the remains of a carcass being swarmed by locusts, most likely the species that ate its way through Southern California in the 1860s, leaving cattle without grass or plants to eat.
Todd Johnson/KPCC
A team of City Planning Department model makers, drafters and architects surveyed downtown Los Angeles between 1938 and 1940 and built a model, of which this is a small part, at the Natural History Museum's new exhibit,
Museum patrons can follow a sweeping ceiling display to the various light points that highlight artifacts throughout the Natural History Museum's new exhibit, "Becoming Los Angeles."
Todd Johnson/KPCC
A team of City Planning Department model makers, drafters and architects surveyed downtown Los Angeles between 1938 and 1940 and built a model, of which this is a small part, at the Natural History Museum's new exhibit,
The Natural History Museums’s permanent exhibition, Becoming Los Angeles, opens to the public July 14, 2013.
Todd Johnson/KPCC
A team of City Planning Department model makers, drafters and architects surveyed downtown Los Angeles between 1938 and 1940 and built a model, of which this is a small part, at the Natural History Museum's new exhibit,
Museum patrons can follow a sweeping ceiling display to the various light points that highlight artifacts throughout the exhibit.
Todd Johnson/KPCC
A team of City Planning Department model makers, drafters and architects surveyed downtown Los Angeles between 1938 and 1940 and built a model, of which this is a small part, at the Natural History Museum's new exhibit,
Museum patrons photograph a sword in the Becoming L.A. exhibit that represents a time between the Spanish Mission Era and the Mexican Rancho Era.
Todd Johnson/KPCC


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This week the Natural History Museum of Los Angeles at Exposition Park is rolling out a new, permanent exhibit called Becoming Los Angeles. It's a massive project which recounts much of the history of Los Angeles — biologically, geographically and culturally — over the span of 500 years.

Becoming LA is a collection of items ranging from the first container of water collected from the LA aquaduct to suitcases found at the Manzanar internment camp. Take Two got a sneak preview last week of the exhibit with the museum's anthropology chair Margaret Hardin and creative director Simon Adlum. 

We began our tour with an unlikely -- yet integral -- player in our city's history.