I happened upon this Spanish Colonial Revival home in the Los Angeles suburb of Monrovia, a few miles from my neighborhood in Eagle Rock. It was the home to Upton Sinclair between the years of 1942 and 1966, andÂ is where he wrote most of his later works, most notably the phenomenally popular and and largely forgotten Pulitzer Prize winningÂ Lanny BuddÂ Series. I got to thinking about this book series, which I had enjoyed in high school.
Sinclair moved to Monrovia from Pasadena where, after developing the socialist reform “EPIC” movement and narrowly losing the 1934 governor’s race, he cocooned himself in this house and wrote the Lanny Budd series, a massive volume of work: eleven volumes of 600+ pages each. Each page is packed with meticulously detailed historical facts, all researched by Sinclair at the local library.
The Upton Sinclair house was built in 1923 by architect F. H. Wallis, who along with his partner S. T. Norton are credited with designing many Los Angeles landmarks including The Financial Center Building, the Temple Sinai and The Los Angeles Theatre.