Jerald Podair is author of “City of Dreams: Dodger Stadium and the Birth of Modern Los Angeles.”

On April 10, 1962 Walter O’Malley’s vision for the Los Angeles Dodgers triumphed when he opened his new privately constructed stadium. It was five years in the making, and wasn’t without controversy, as various civic visions and social forces clashed. One thing was certain about Dodger Stadium: it had a profound effect on the city’s identity in the 20th Century. In this edition of the Nixon Now Podcast, Jerald Podair, author of “City of Dreams: Dodger Stadium and the Birth of Modern Los Angeles” tell this gripping story. Jerald Podair is professor of history and the Robert S. French Professor of American Studies at Lawrence University in Appleton, Wisconsin. He is a recipient of the Allan Nevins Prize, awarded by the Society of American Historians for “literary distinction in the writing of history.”


– Walter O’Malley’s biography.

– Why O’Malley moved the Dodgers from Brooklyn to Los Angeles.

– The politics behind the construction of Dodgers stadium.

– The story behind the eviction of Mexican Americans at Chavez Ravine.

– How Dodgers Stadium affected the identity of the City of Los Angeles.

Further Reading:

Nixon, Richard. Letter to Dodgers Welcoming Committee. 10 April 1958.

Nixon, Richard. Western Union Telegram to Walter O’Malley. 1 October 1959.

O’Malley, Walter. Letter to Richard Nixon. 19 October 1959.

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Photo: At a 1969 All-Star Game reception in Washington, D.C., Walter O’Malley shakes hands with President Richard M. Nixon. In the background are Peter O’Malley and Baseball Commissioner Bowie Kuhn. Official Website of Walter O’Malley.