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ProphetM Aug 15, 2012 12:27 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by fhammon (Post 5798450)
Just Googling around everybody seems to think this a cool thing. It's all about the mural and it's preservation but nothing about preserving the character of the historic district.
I would imagine Christine Sterling is turning in her grave.

Meh, Christine Sterling was a jerk anyway. She's responsible for saving (some of) the Avila adobe but she also advocated the destruction of other historic sites, including the Lugo House, because they didn't fit in with her personal vision of what she wanted the plaza to be. The Lugo House was chock full of Chinamen after all - better to just tear it down along with anything else east of Los Angeles St. (which wasn't much after Union Station came), and put in a parking lot.

Sterling, who had never gone to Mexico and never would, turned Olvera Street into a romanticized, tourist-friendly facsimile of a Mexican marketplace, not least because she didn't actually involve the local Mexican-American population until it was time for her to pick out the people she would allow to sell things there. But in the process of saving the buildings she also largely separated them from their true, complicated history in favor of a simple, inoffensive fake one. Preserving its character now just seems like closing the barn doors 80 years after the horses bolted.

She tried to do a similar fake-authenticity thing for the Chinese community with her China City project. I can only assume that part of the reason for its failure was that once again she decided what it should be (rickshaw rides and buildings by Hollywood set designers), and not the community it was meant to represent. China City burned down, while the authentic and community-supported new Chinatown thrived.

Sterling was there at the unveiling of the mural in question, and was responsible for whitewashing it. So although she may indeed be turning in her grave, it's probably less because of the canopy and more because of the fact that the mural survived her and her contemporaries' attempted destruction of it.

fhammon Aug 15, 2012 6:23 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by ProphetM (Post 5798708)
Meh, Christine Sterling was a jerk anyway. She's responsible for saving (some of) the Avila adobe but she also advocated the destruction of other historic sites, including the Lugo House, because they didn't fit in with her personal vision of what she wanted the plaza to be. The Lugo House was chock full of Chinamen after all - better to just tear it down along with anything else east of Los Angeles St. (which wasn't much after Union Station came), and put in a parking lot.

Sterling, who had never gone to Mexico and never would, turned Olvera Street into a romanticized, tourist-friendly facsimile of a Mexican marketplace, not least because she didn't actually involve the local Mexican-American population until it was time for her to pick out the people she would allow to sell things there. But in the process of saving the buildings she also largely separated them from their true, complicated history in favor of a simple, inoffensive fake one. Preserving its character now just seems like closing the barn doors 80 years after the horses bolted.

She tried to do a similar fake-authenticity thing for the Chinese community ProphetMProphetMwith her China City project. I can only assume that part of the reason for its failure was that once again she decided what it should be (rickshaw rides and buildings by Hollywood set designers), and not the community it was meant to represent. China City burned down, while the authentic and community-supported new Chinatown thrived.

Sterling was there at the unveiling of the mural in question, and was responsible for whitewashing it. So although she may indeed be turning in her grave, it's probably less because of the canopy and more because of the fact that the mural survived her and her contemporaries' attempted destruction of it.

Yo, ProphetM.
You and I are completely simpatico on the points you mentioned right down to Sterling being a major bee-hatch.
I grieve the loss of the Lugo House every time it crosses my mind. Maybe every other day.
My point being is that this intrusive architecture is more of the same. It tells me that we're losing the preservation battle. People care more about issues in a modern, emotional light and let history be damned. It makes Sterling look like a saint.
I also agree that the mural should be featured and protected. As I said it has now become part of the story. I only object to the intrusive modern design. At the very least, out of respect, it should blend. That's my main objection.
What they have built is an insult to the spirit of La Plaza.
Might as well bulldoze the whole thing and let Gloria Molina recreate it in her own image.

MichaelRyerson Aug 15, 2012 1:13 PM

I have to admit there is a part of me that resists liking Union Station. When I look at it in all its obvious beauty I see the bones of Chinatown upon which it was built, the misdirection and bad-faith negotiations which went on in the years leading up to it. For all their utility, the parking lots and sterile open spaces do not call to me. That the mural survives is irony of a delicious sort. We'll be in Los Angeles in October and again the following June, I feel a trip to see the mural both times is the least we can do, a tiny scrap of karma sent Ms. Sterling's way.

Handsome Stranger Aug 15, 2012 6:27 PM

MichaelRyerson, thanks for posting all those gorgeous Julius Shulman images!

On a slightly related note, here's a peek at a new book of vintage Los Angeles photos:

http://www.bccbooks.org/graphics/boo...ay,%201939.jpg
William Reagh, Window Shopping on Broadway, 1939
[source: bccbooks.org]

The book, William Reagh: A Long Walk Downtown, Photographs of Los Angeles and Southern California, 1936-1991 is a wee bit out of my price range. ($225? Really?) Maybe some generous soul will donate a copy to LAPL, and I can drool over the photos while I'm at the library.

Horthos Aug 15, 2012 7:59 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by fhammon (Post 5799013)
Yo, ProphetM.
You and I are completely simpatico on the points you mentioned right down to Sterling being a major bee-hatch.
I grieve the loss of the Lugo House every time it crosses my mind. Maybe every other day.
My point being is that this intrusive architecture is more of the same. It tells me that we're losing the preservation battle. People care more about issues in a modern, emotional light and let history be damned. It makes Sterling look like a saint.
I also agree that the mural should be featured and protected. As I said it has now become part of the story. I only object to the intrusive modern design. At the very least, out of respect, it should blend. That's my main objection.
What they have built is an insult to the spirit of La Plaza.
Might as well bulldoze the whole thing and let Gloria Molina recreate it in her own image.


I am all for murals (as an artist myself I appreciate them very much), but really, this thing they put up is just stomach churning, you can not miss it, there is no trying or even thinking about avoiding it, it just sticks out like a sore thumb.
It is disrespect in architectural form.

Speaking of murals, my memory sucks, but has this been covered recently here?

http://blogdowntown.com/2012/06/6825...oved-relocated

Again, I like murals, but I want to see the original facade restored much much more. They currently have a big sheet over the building, they have taken the mural off, and you can sorta see behind the sheet at the right angles and see what looks like glazed yellowish terra cotta bricks. I will post some pictures tomorrow (unless my internet goes out, which frequently happens in the Alexandria).

fhammon Aug 15, 2012 9:04 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by MichaelRyerson (Post 5799140)
I have to admit there is a part of me that resists liking Union Station. When I look at it in all its obvious beauty I see the bones of Chinatown upon which it was built, the misdirection and bad-faith negotiations which went on in the years leading up to it. For all their utility, the parking lots and sterile open spaces do not call to me. That the mural survives is irony of a delicious sort. We'll be in Los Angeles in October and again the following June, I feel a trip to see the mural both times is the least we can do, a tiny scrap of karma sent Ms. Sterling's way.

+1

Where's the damned "like" button?

fhammon Aug 15, 2012 9:17 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by MichaelRyerson (Post 5799140)
I have to admit there is a part of me that resists liking Union Station. When I look at it in all its obvious beauty I see the bones of Chinatown upon which it was built, the misdirection and bad-faith negotiations which went on in the years leading up to it. For all their utility, the do not call to me. That the mural survives is irony of a delicious sort. We'll be in Los Angeles in October and again the following June, I feel a trip to see the mural both times is the least we can do, a tiny scrap of karma sent Ms. Sterling's way.

I wasn't entirely honest. I'm OK with Union Station all except for the skanky history behind it. Same goes for Dodger Stadium and Chavez Ravine.
At some point it's just "Los Angeles". Things don't stand still. The present and future must be served.
I do however grieve the loss of that little bit of outstanding history that was the Lugo House, Calle de los Negros and Ferguson Alley etc. There was no good reason why those pieces of valuable historical assets should have been destroyed. For what? "parking lots and sterile open spaces".
I get angry but it's too late. I didn't have a say. It happened a long time ago.
I can for sure still get angry over this Disneyesque "visitors center" for all the good it will do.
Is anybody hearing me? Anybody? (crickets)

BTW
Is anybody hip to the Farmers Field plan?
Anybody know who the farmer was?
I do.
Maj. Horace Bell's farm stretched from the corner of Figueroa and Olympic to Union and Washington.
They should name it Bell Stadium.
There is still a little street near the convention center named after his wife Georgia.
They are both buried at Rosedale Cemetery...but I have yet to find their grave sites (help please)
Quote:

Los Angeles TimesJuly 2, 1918Page II-1Maj. Horace BellLate Soldier-Author Will Be Buried TodayA life chapter of the adventure and daring will be closed with the funeral services over the body of Maj. Horace Bell, fighter, filibuster, ranger and writer at the Immanual Presbyterian Church this afternoon. Maj. Bell died at his home in Berkeley on Saturday of injuries received in a fall. He was 85 years old. He will be buried at Rosedale Cemetery.In 1849 a boy of 19 jogged wearily on horseback into Sutter's Fort with a party of gold seekers from Indiana. It was Horace Bell on his first venture. He left his companions prospecting for pay dirt and went to work in a newspaper office. He was in Sacramento when the great news arrived of California's admission to the Union, and he had served on The Star and the Alta California before he had been two years in the gold country.Then he came to Los Angeles to live in the first brick residence here, that of his uncle, Capt. Alexander Bell, who donated the City Hall site. This early brick structure, now demolished, at the corner of Los Angeles and Aliso streets, was once the temporary headquarters of the Capitol, before it was established at Monterey.In the Civil WarFor three years Horace Bell was a State Ranger in the pacification of Southern California; two years he spent in filibustering in Nicaragua with Gen. William Walker, and in 1859 he served under Juarez in Mexico. Then, when Civil War was declared, he went back to Indianapolis and enlisted with his father and two brothers when the first regiment raised in that state--the Sixth Indiana--which was mustered in April 22, 1861.Many brave deeds are told of him during the war, and before it was over he attained the rank of major. "He is a man to do what he attempts, and to be trusted in what he does," reads a report in the fields of the Signal Office of the War Department, which also states,: His gallantry, resolution, intelligence and promptness have been marked and commended. He has rendered the United States Government great service."At the close of the war he was stationed at New Orleans, and later sent to Fort Yuma. From there he returned to Los Angeles, and up to --- years ago the soldierly figure of the major was a picturesque sight on the downtown streets. It was here that his first wife died--formerly Miss Georgia Herrick of New York City. Afterwards he took up his residence at Berkeley, and ten years ago married Mrs. B. J. Culver of Culver, Indiana, the founder and owner of the Culver Military Academy here.Maj. Bell was a lawyer and author as well as a soldier. He practiced law in Los Angeles for nearly forty years, and his "Reminiscences of a Ranger" and "Confessions of a Filibuster" are largely quoted in later histories of the State.He came from a family of soldiers. His paternal great-grandfather was a member of the Parsons Homes colony that landed near Boston in 1719. Capt. Zadock Wright, forefather on the maternal side, landed in 1821 and settled in Virginia. Both served in the colonial wars and the War of the Revolution.His widow, a son and six daughters survive him. Two of the daughters, Mrs. J. A. Phillips and Mrs. Frank Walsh, reside in this city. He was a member of the Los Angeles Bar Association, the Pioneers' Society, the Sons of the Revolution and the Grand Army of the Republic.Rev. Herbert Booth Smith will officiate at the funeral services this afternoon at the Immanuel Presbyterian Church. Godeau and Martinoni have charge of the arrangements.
http://www.findagrave.com/cgi-bin/fg...l&GRid=5836841

malumot Aug 15, 2012 10:19 PM

Way too much over-intellectualizing of late......(But then again I was never an architectural historian, published preservationist, urban archeologist, or even a community organizer.)

- The mural should be preserved, of course (and it is.)

- The awning or overhang or whatever you call it sucks. Jarring in context with the surrounding streetscape. A 12 year old would notice that.

- Union Station? Talk about crying over spilled milk. That was 75 years ago. Cities have been razing crappy areas and rebuilding since the Ur civilization. They've even been razing DECENT areas. For 35 years New York's most expensive and luxurious hotel was the Waldorf Astoria, then located at 34th Street and Fifth Avenue. It was torn down.......to build the Empire State Building.

- Sterling. In retrospect she made some mistakes, I suppose. Perhaps a b1tch. I don't know......and neither do you. The old broad died nearly 50 years ago.

If nothing else she at least brought the concept of preservation into the public eye, however clumsily. Had she and people like her not done so, I am sure everything from Eagle Rock to Exposition Park would look like an overgrown Warner Center by now. The CRA would have insisted.

fhammon Aug 15, 2012 10:47 PM

Over intellectualize much? http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v3...moticons/1.gif
Sorry for the obnoxious emoticon.
Good post though. Thank you.
I feel a lot better knowing that other people are thinking along the same lines or at least about the same things.
I guess that's one of the reasons I come here. One of many.


Quote:

Originally Posted by malumot (Post 5799771)
Way too much over-intellectualizing of late......(But then again I was never an architectural historian, published preservationist, urban archeologist, or even a community organizer.)

- The mural should be preserved, of course (and it is.)

- The awning or overhang or whatever you call it sucks. Jarring in context with the surrounding streetscape. A 12 year old would notice that.

- Union Station? Talk about crying over spilled milk. That was 75 years ago. Cities have been razing crappy areas and rebuilding since the Ur civilization. They've even been razing DECENT areas. For 35 years New York's most expensive and luxurious hotel was the Waldorf Astoria, then located at 34th Street and Fifth Avenue. It was torn down.......to build the Empire State Building.

- Sterling. In retrospect she made some mistakes, I suppose. Perhaps a b1tch. I don't know......and neither do you. The old broad died nearly 50 years ago.

If nothing else she at least brought the concept of preservation into the public eye, however clumsily. Had she and people like her not done so, I am sure everything from Eagle Rock to Exposition Park would look like an overgrown Warner Center by now. The CRA would have insisted.


malumot Aug 15, 2012 10:56 PM

Great color pix of the LARY!

I must admit I scratched my head on the middle photo...(My....What a prosperous looking downtown! But Market Street?....hmmmmmmm....I dunno any Market Street in LA.....)

Saw the next photo and the light bulb went on.....

Of course. Market Street, Inglewood.

BTW - The Fox was only built in 1949, replacing a theater that had burned on the same spot. So it was a 6-year old youngster when the shot was taken.

It is now boarded up and vacant.



http://www.teresapetersoffice.com/ID...e=1425010.html






ethereal_reality Aug 15, 2012 11:11 PM

Does anyone know where the old Miyako Hotel was located? (obviously somewhere in Little Tokyo)

http://imageshack.us/a/img215/2503/aapcmiyakohotel.jpg
ebay


There is currently a Miyako Hotel in Little Tokyo but it's location is mid-block so it isn't the same site.
The old hotel appears to me on a corner, and below a flight path ;) in the vintage postcard.



below: If you're interested, here is the website for the current Miyako Hotel.
http://www.miyakoinn.com/

ethereal_reality Aug 15, 2012 11:30 PM

D.W. Griffith's I N T O L E R A N C E (1916) is on TCM tonight at 8:00 eastern.


http://imageshack.us/a/img545/2676/a...ncesethuge.jpg
http://www.michaelspornanimation.com/splog/?p=1480









below: Rear view of the magnificent ancient Babylon set.

http://imageshack.us/a/img835/9516/a...eranceskel.jpg
http://www.michaelspornanimation.com/splog/?p=1480

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fhammon Aug 16, 2012 1:31 AM

Have we covered Cecil B. DeMille's "Ten Commandments" buried set yet?

http://www.flickr.com/photos/jobaria...n/photostream/

westcork Aug 16, 2012 2:36 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by ethereal_reality (Post 5799822)
Does anyone know where the old Miyako Hotel was located? (obviously somewhere in Little Tokyo)

http://imageshack.us/a/img215/2503/aapcmiyakohotel.jpg
ebay


There is currently a Miyako Hotel in Little Tokyo but it's location is mid-block so it isn't the same site.
The old hotel appears to me on a corner, and below a flight path ;) in the vintage postcard.



below: If you're interested, here is the website for the current Miyako Hotel.
http://www.miyakoinn.com/

It looks like it was on the corner of 1st and San Pedro. Now it's on the next block over
http://jpg3.lapl.org/pics37/00068044.jpg
LAPL

ethereal_reality Aug 16, 2012 2:55 AM

:previous: Thank you Westcork.
__

fhammon, I am amazed by the buried 'Ten Commandments set". Shall we take a vacation and explore that area. :)
__

ethereal_reality Aug 16, 2012 3:01 AM

http://imageshack.us/a/img217/2365/g...glendalehu.jpg
postcard/ebay






below: The Hotel Glendale today.

http://imageshack.us/a/img694/9167/g...glendaleto.jpg
google street view

___

ethereal_reality Aug 16, 2012 3:08 AM

I came across this photograph dated Jan. 6, 1913 on one of my old CDs.

http://imageshack.us/a/img59/7996/17rare7date1913.jpg

The only information I have is 'Los Angeles'. Can anyone wager a guess to it's location?
I vaguely remember the Los Angeles Population sign at far left...but that's about it.

__

westcork Aug 16, 2012 3:26 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by ethereal_reality (Post 5800056)
I came across this photograph dated Jan. 6, 1913 on one of my old CDs.

http://imageshack.us/a/img59/7996/17rare7date1913.jpg

The only information I have is 'Los Angeles'. Can anyone wager a guess to it's location?
I vaguely remember the Los Angeles Population sign at far left...but that's about it.

__

It looks like the Frese Optical Company was at 544 S Spring Street
http://www.samdodge.com/html/lacamer.../lacamCard.jpg
http://www.samdodge.com/html/lacamera/Page_3.html

Here is another shot from USC
http://digitallibrary.usc.edu/assets...27E3DF804?v=hr
http://digitallibrary.usc.edu/assets.../view/CHS-5768

The caption reads:
Photograph (streetscape) of huge crowds surrounding the All Night And Day Bank on the corner of Spring Street and Sixth Street, April, 1910. Throngs of people are bunched up in front of the bank overflowing down the sidewalks, into the streets, and on sidewalks across the streets. Vehicle traffic such as horse-drawn carriages, early-model cars and bicyclists manage to whittle their way through the commotion. The bank "closed Oct. 10, 1910 and reopened again later in the month."

And here is another interesting item, a letter from the Frese company, written the day after your photo above.
http://www.surveyhistory.org/images/freseLH.JPG
http://www.surveyhistory.org/
http://www.surveyhistory.org/company...billheads1.htm

And here is the catalog that was sent:
http://www.surveyantiques.com/conten...log-viewer.htm

ethereal_reality Aug 16, 2012 3:45 AM

:previous: You are spot-on westcork!

You found all that information in under a half hour
Kudos to you.

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ethereal_reality Aug 16, 2012 3:54 AM

Postcard postmarked 1934. I had NO idea there was ever a hotel up on Mount Wilson.

http://imageshack.us/a/img818/710/aa...wilson1934.jpg
old CD/probably ebay

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below: After a 'google' or two I came across this excellent photograph (with information below).

http://imageshack.us/a/img253/5149/mountwilsonhotel.jpg
http://www.rubylane.com/item/183041-...Photo-Postcard

http://imageshack.us/a/img684/8013/m...nhotelinfo.jpg

A children's zoo up on Mount Wilson?? -shakes head in disbelief---continues googling. :)

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