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In 1948, Walter J. "Doc" Daugherty of the Los Angeles Science Fantasy Society proposed that an annual West Coast convention be started for West Coast fans who couldn't afford to travel east each year. The first convention of the series later be named Westercon was held in September, 1948. It was a one-day event held on September 5th, at the Park View Manor, with an attendance of 77. Its official name was the Annual West Coast Scienti-Fantasy Conference.
The program book below with its autograph page comes from the collection of Aline and Gerry Thompson, early members of LASFS, who met one another at the LASFS. It was donated to the LASFS website by their son Mike Thompson.
Mike writes that his parents probably joined LASFS "around 1948. My father was only 21 then. My mother makes no mention of the LASFS in her diary for 1946. I don't know how active they were as members. I don't remember them going to meetings in the 1950s although we did occasionally attend conventions. I remember riding in an elevator with Van Vogt! "
The Internet is a wonderful way to find information. After webstaffer Lee Gold mentioned Mike Thompson's Program Book scans on the APA-LASFS mailing list, Len Moffatt said he had written up some memories of Westercon I, along with a copy of the names from its Guest Book, in his FAPAzine, published "some time after 1984". Lee appealed to the trufen mailing list, and with only that information Bob Lichtman promptly found the zine in the FAPA archives, in Len's MOONSHINE #53 in the May 1985 FAPA mailing. The LASFS website is grateful to both of them.
Note: that APA-LASFS and trufen are both Yahoo groups. Click here to find them and other electronic fannish discussion groups.
|Last Updated ( Wednesday, 20 May 2009 )|