| Simon Rodia|
| Lucia Ucci (m. 1902)|
| February 12, 1879 (1879-02-12) Serino, Avellino, Italy|
July 17, 1965, Martinez, California, United States
Sabato "Simon" Rodia (February 12, 1879 – July 17, 1965) was an Italian-American artist who created the Watts Towers, or, as he called them, Nuestro Pueblo, (Our People, in Spanish) a Los Angeles landmark.
Rodia was born and raised in Serino, Italy. In 1895, age 15, he emigrated to the United States with his brother. Rodia lived in Pennsylvania until his brother died in a mining incident. He then moved to Seattle, Washington, where he married Lucia Ucci in 1902. They soon moved to Oakland, where Rodia's three children were born. Following his divorce circa 1909, he moved to Long Beach and worked at odd jobs before finally settling in Watts in 1920.
Rodia began constructing the Watts Towers in 1921, but did not complete them until 1954. They were frequently vandalized by neighbors, and Rodia gave this as the reason he moved to Martinez, where he remained until his death in 1965. It is believed that Rodia never returned to Watts after moving to Martinez.
A photograph of Simon Rodia is included on the cover of the Beatles' album Sgt. Pepper's Lonely Hearts Club Band, released in 1967. The public Simon Rodia Continuation High School in Watts is named for him. In the Dark Skies episode "Burn, Baby, Burn", Rodia is depicted as being inspired by an alien encounter. Later in the episode, the towers serve as a plot device.
Simon Rodia Wikipedia