During this spring quarter I am working as a Fellow with UCLA’s CFPRT processing the papers and research of Jay Frierman. Frierman was a UCLA history and archaeology professor who conducted original archaeological surveys and excavations throughout the Middle East in the 1960s and 1970s and southern California in the 1980s and 1990s. Interestingly enough, before Frierman was a UCLA professor, he managed the Vincent Price Art Gallery at the East Los Angeles College for several years in the late 1950s. Frierman was an expert of Middle East ceramics and glazes as well as early California settlements and cultures.
Frierman retired from UCLA in 1980 and began his second career as a consulting archaeologist, where he became an expert on the early California cultures and settlements. Frierman conducted independent archaeological surveys throughout California from SLO to Malibu to downtown Los Angeles. Much of the work he conducted in the 1980s was at the El Pueblo de Los Angeles Historical Monument, which is the parcel of land around LA’s historic Olvera Street and which comprises the original Spanish colonial from the late 18th Century. He did excavation surveys on different plots of land throughout the El Pueblo park and found numerous historical cultural artifacts. The red circle on the map shows where the original downtown Los Angeles settlement was located, a piece of land now bisected by the 101 Freeway.
Frierman also conducted archaeological surveys on several of the historical buildings in downtown Los Angeles including the Pico House, the Garnier House, and the Sepulveda House, all built between 1870 and 1890. Here is a photograph of the historic Sepulveda House where Frierman conducted excavations in the early 1980s. Jay Frierman passed away in 2000 but left a legacy as one of the top experts on Middle Eastern ceramic glazes and the early settlements and cultures of southern California.