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Wild West meets Downtown in new historic walking tour

By Hayley Fox
Published: Friday, March 09, 2012, at 05:01PM
Flickr via peppergrass

A new Downtown historic tour explores the Wild West side of DTLA.

Mount up urban cowboys, there's a new walking tour in town. "How Los Angeles Invented The Wild West (and why no one knows it)" begins at The Last Bookstore and travels back in time to a Downtown frontier that preceded mining camps such as Tombstone and Deadwood.

The tour takes place this Sunday, March 11th and next Sunday, March 18th. Tours begin at 11 a.m. and 2 p.m, where seasoned Downtown resident Brady Westwater will lead participants on a journey through DTLA's wild past.

According to Westwater, everyone from Wyatt Earp to Judge Roy Bean came to L.A. before heading east to help start the Wild West. L.A. was one of the few towns built on cattle and mining and remained a part of the Wild West much longer than most places, Westwater said.

"Beginning in the late '90s when I moved down here it was still the Wild West," Westwater joked.

His encyclopedic knowledge of Downtown is endless; he pours through centuries-old letters, diaries, books and artifacts to try and reconstruct the parts of DTLA's history that have long been forgotten.

Westwater said he'd eventually like to open a museum and host a series of lectures about Downtown's complicated and uncovered past.

Tickets for the Wild West tour are $15 per person and kids under 8 go for free. He said he likes to keep the tours intimate, so please make a reservation beforehand.

For reservations, call Westwater at 213-804-8396 or email at

The Last Bookstore is located at 453 S. Spring St.


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