The towering metal structures with their intricate mosaic bases are instantly recognizable. Watts Towers have been part of the Los Angeles landscape since Simon Rodia began building them in 1921. The towers have been featured and referenced in film, television, and musical albums.
On my last visit to California, I took the best Los Angeles tour. Part of the excursion took us to Watts Towers and to the adjacent community arts center. Not only did I get to see these amazing structures up close, I also learned quite a bit about their history. Our tour guide was incredibly knowledgeable and was able to tell us details from the 33 years Rodia spent working on the towers, as well as the efforts of community activists to preserve the site.