Category Archives: Landmarks

From Silver Screen to Sundaes: Casino Theater

Prior to 1904 , the property between 643 and 651 Fifth Avenue was nothing more than a series of small wooden buildings housing a shoemaker, a jeweler and a cigar and cigarette merchant.   In 1904, George J. Chambers , father of famed Olympic swimmer Florence Chambers, purchased the property from L.G. Pratt for the unlikely sum […]

Two Buildings, Same Time, Different Stories

Although they were built only a year apart, the Nanking Cafe and the Manilla Cafe have very little in common. However, they both displayed the growing ethnic diversity prevalent in the Gaslamp Quarter in the early 20th century, and which continues today. They also both used local materials in their respective construction, illustrating the growing […]

Many Forms of Labor by Many Hands

Many wonder just exactly what a Labor Temple is. It is defined as an organization created for the purpose of improving conditions for those who work, including agricultural, educational, instructive and also, unions. The building is their “temple,” or meeting place. Throughout its long tenure, the Gaslamp’s Labor Temple Building has housed many of these, including unions for bartenders, cigar makers, theatrical employees , hod carriers and the Women Union Labor Leagues.