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Archiver > SOCAL > 2001-03 > 0984387328

Subject: N P You Can Have Progress
Date: Mon, 12 Mar 2001 03:55:28 EST

>From "Nuestro Pueblo - Los Angeles, City of Romance"
Copyright 1940, by Charles H. Owens and Joseph F. Seewerker


A. L. Nies came into Los Angeles in 1882 and established his blacksmith shop
near the present Hotel Broadway. He liked the friendly little town where
passersby called each other by name and spoke of personal affairs to man,
woman, and child. For sixteen years he was content. Then the devil of
Progress began to alter landmarks and inundate the streets with 'foreigners.'

Mr. Nies made his decision. He could do nothing about the Progress so much
remarked, but he could do something about his own life. He moved out to a
muddy crossroads and set up his shop. Progress was far away. Ranchers from
near-by Eagle Rock and Pasadena brought strings of horses to be shod, buggies
and wagons to be repaired. Mr. Nies pounded the red iron with the ancient
clanging that Vulcan knew, and Weland.

'But I hadn't been out here ten years,' he says sourly, 'before they were
calling the road a street and paving it! Then somebody opened a grocery
store. Somebody else started something else. Now, the shop has a street
number! 6104 North Figueroa. Look at the cars whizzing by! Look at all the
bustling. This is Highland park, now!'

But he has the forge with which he started as blacksmith. His shop is pretty
much as it was in 1898. It seems a safe forecast that however the town may
change, Mr. Nies will remain the village blacksmith, saying nothing good of

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