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Join the Pacific Palisades Historical Society in a conversation with author Laura Rosenzweig about her new book, Hollywood’s Spies:  The Undercover Surveillance of Nazis in Los Angeles.  Come to the Theatre Palisades, 941 Temescal Canyon Road, on Wednesday, October 25, at 7:30 p.m.  Admission is free.  Parking is free.  Refreshments follow the program.  Information:  www.pacificpalisadeshistory.org.  Questions:  This e-mail address is being protected from spam bots, you need JavaScript enabled to view it  



Hear the story of 1930’s Nazi Germany’s intrusion into American political culture and how Los Angeles was a particular hotbed for this extremist political activity.  Learn how Jewish executives of the motion picture industry secretly paid private investigators to infiltrate, monitor and report on the political activities of these groups.  The hidden history can now be told





During the 1930s, Nazi Germany sponsored a secret propaganda war to transplant Nazism to the United States.  Led by the German-American Bund, hundreds of grassroots, Nazi-inspired nativist groups fueled a vitriolic anti-Communist, anti-Semitic  propaganda campaign to incite a Nazi-inspired revolution in this country.  Los Angeles was a particular hotbed for this extremist political activity.  


Alarmed by the rise of Nazism in their own backyard, the Jewish executives of the motion picture industry secretly paid private investigators to infiltrate, monitor and report on the political activities of these groups. Stunned by the evidence of German intrusion into American political culture and by the seditious plots their informants uncovered, the moguls partnered with local veterans' groups to channel this information onto local and federal authorities. The information collected by Hollywood's spies was used by the FBI, military intelligence and congressional committees to expose the Nazi threat.  Through it all, however, neither the public nor even the authorities themselves understood the role that the Hollywood moguls had played in gathering that evidence.


Hidden from history for 80 years, the story of Hollywood's spies can now be told.  Join Eric Dugdale in conversation with Laura Rosenzweig as we explore Los Angeles's Nazi past and the role that Hollywood's spies played in defeating it.




Laura Rosenzweig is an American Jewish historian. She has taught US and American Jewish history at both UC Santa Cruz and San Francisco State University. She holds a PhD in U.S. History from the University of California at Santa Cruz, an MA in Education from Stanford and a BA in History from Union College in Schenectady, NY. Laura’s book, Hollywood's Spies, was supported by grants from the Institute for Humanities Research at the University of California, the Historical Society of Southern California, and the Memorial Foundation for Jewish Culture in New York. 


Laura has worked in education for 35 years (including three years teaching at the Brentwood School.)  She lives in Palo Alto, CA with her husband, Cary, and currently works for the University of California Office of the President.  Now that her book is finished, Laura spends much of her free time with her new grandson, Judah.









Wednesday, December 6, 2017—Information below to be updated.





Representative PPHS Events PDF Print E-mail



Excursions & Tours

Annual Dinner



The American Revolution with author Gary Nash

Turn-of-the-century home musical instruments with Lief Engeswick

Historian Ernest Marquez on Santa Monica Beaches

Food historian Charles Perry on "The Wild Old Westside", a history of Los Angeles beach restaurants. 

Historian, lecturer, author Roger D. McGrath on "The Palisades in the 50's," recollections of Pacific Palisades in the 1950's.

Harry Medved, author of several books illustrated how Pacific Palisades as been used as a backdrop for numerous movies and television programs.


Excursions & Tours

Chino, CA

Civil War Re-Enactment

Historic Pasadena, CA

Pasadena Museum of History, the Fenyes Mansion, the Finnish Bath House, and the Gamble House

Little Tokyo, Los Angeles, CA

Japanese American National Museum, Ansel Adams at Manzanar exhibit, and Higashi Honganji Buddhist Temple

Downtown Los Angeles, CA

Genealogical Bus Excursion to Downtown Library History Department and Archives, and tour of the L.A. Regional Family History Center. 

Docent Tours

Frank Lloyd Wright's Hollyhock House

The Rand Corporation Building and Art Collection 

Walking Tours

Downtown Pacific Palisades

Santa Monica Canyon


Annual Dinner

Winter holiday music and dinner at the Aldersgate Lodge 




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