museum web small

First Goodwill Store 2

Image courtesy of La Plaza United Methodist Museum of Social Justice.

Goodwill Southern California presents a special Exhibition in honor of our 100 year Anniversary!

Katherine B. Higgins, pictured below, was the first woman to found a Goodwill.  In 1916 she started a movement that would spread across Southern California, providing social services, health clinics, and discount stores to fund employment and job training.

Kathrine Higgins with baby webOn March 9, 1918 the first Goodwill Store, pictured above, opened in one of the portable buildings in the Plaza Community Center on Marchessault St., presently the southern end of Olvera Street.  During a time when the city’s facilities were segregated, the water fountain was a symbol of “brotherhood” where anyone of any race could drink freely.

Today, celebrating over 100 Years in Southern California, Goodwill provides many of the same services it did when Higgins began. And, the organization is still guided by the same philosophy as when the national organization was conceived in 1902 by Edgar J. Helms:  “Not Charity But A Chance”.


All are invited to visit the self-guided Goodwill exhibit at:


Fletcher map


Goodwill Southern California
Community Enrichment Center
3150 N. San Fernando Road
Los Angeles, CA 90065 (Atwater Village)


Mon. – Sat., 9am-9pm . Sun., 10am-8pm

Free admission and parking.



Developed in collaboration with the Los Angeles United Methodist Museum of Social Justice.


For more information, please contact Goodwill Marketing & Community Relations at meby@goodwillsocal.org or 323-539-2104.

We look forward to seeing you at the exhibit!