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Here's what L.A. looked like 68 years ago, covered in snow

Written by
Brittany Martin
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This winter may be rainy and cold, even frosty at times, but Los Angeles typically doesn't see snow any closer than the mountains. Back in January of 1949, however, a legendary snow storm blew through town, blanketing L.A. and the surrounding areas with snow cover.

Snow used to fall in L.A. about once every few years, but 1949 was one of the last, with up to a foot of snow falling in parts of the city. Smaller snows would be recorded in 1957 and 1962, but not a flake has fallen since (or, at least, not a naturally-occurring one) and, as KCET reports, each year that passes, it becomes less and less likely that the city will ever see snow again.

While we won't be sitting around waiting for a blizzard to show up on the forecast, we can at least appreciate these images from the digital archives of the L.A. Public Library that show us just what a snow-covered city looked like 68 years ago. 

Skiing in La Crescenta

Photograph: Los Angeles Public Library / Herald-Examiner Collection


Stalled out motorists in Coldwater Canyon 

Photograph: Los Angeles Public Library / Herald-Examiner Collection


The Huntington Hotel in Pasadena (their slogan was "Where sunshine spends the winter." Oops!)

Photograph: Los Angeles Public Library / Herald-Examiner Collection


Animals at the Griffith Park Zoo

Photograph: Los Angeles Public Library / Security Pacific National Bank Collection


People playing in a Los Angeles city park

Photograph: Los Angeles Public Library / Shades of L.A. Collection


Two cars, driving in Mount Washington

Photograph: Los Angeles Public Library / Security Pacific National Bank Collection


Ladies building a snowman in North Hollywood

Photograph: Los Angeles Public Library / Shades of L.A. Collection

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