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sopas ej Nov 30, 2009 5:47 AM

:previous:

Wow, I wasn't aware that there were plans to expand and perhaps even demolish the original Ambassador Hotel as far back as the 1950s.

I was sad to see the Ambassador close. I feel fortunate to have been able to see the inside of the Ambassador right before it closed; in fact I was there for a semi-formal dinner back in 1989, which I think was the year that it closed. I remember walking around the lobby, and wanting to explore some ballrooms, but the doors were locked. And, it was kind of creepy. Walking down some halls, hehe it reminded me of "The Shining." The hotel seemed so empty, too; I figured that there were few if any guests staying there. So I stopped exploring and went back to the dinner party. I remember wanting to explore the Cocoanut Grove, but I couldn't.

sopas ej Nov 30, 2009 6:19 AM

I just wanted to call attention to that jog in the 101 freeway, the one that went around the old brewery that's been now long-demolished.

For years the freeway went right up against the brewery building and I remember as a child that I felt it was weird that the building would be right up against the freeway.

Here's what Beaudry posted some pages back:
http://farm3.static.flickr.com/2746/...16c0d385_o.jpg

At the top center of the photo you can see old brewery building, not as tall as it was originally, right up against the freeway and the lanes curving around the edge of it. After the brewery building was demolished, the jog in the freeway was still there.

On Friday, I took a picture of that area of the freeway from the new Metro Gold Line extension:
http://img403.imageshack.us/img403/3434/p1070381.jpg

You can see that the on and off-ramps to the freeway have been re-aligned, and that cars no longer have to negotiate that jog. Though the freeway lanes are straighter now, there is still a jog at the edge of the roadway shoulder.

sopas ej Nov 30, 2009 7:03 AM

Silver Lake neighborhood, looking south on Hyperion Avenue at Griffith Park Blvd., 1927, showing amber caution flasher and directional/mileage signs for cities.
http://img209.imageshack.us/img209/1...nhyperiona.jpg
USC archive

Johnny Socko Dec 1, 2009 6:07 PM

I was always intrigued by the Brew 102 building as a kid. This was in the mid-1970's, so the building was abandoned by then. It struck me as odd that what seemed to be a popular brand not long ago had disappeared so quickly.

But the Friedman Bag Company remained, and in Sopas' picture above you can see that the multi-colored roof vents referenced earlier in this thread are still there (the building is now a self-storage center).

The gasometers (the huge gas storage tanks) were before my time. I didn't even know they had existed until I saw some historic photos of the area recently!

Anyone interested in the Ambassador Hotel should rent the film "Bobby". It's as much about the Ambassador itself as it is about the assassination of RFK. It was the last film shot on location at the hotel before it was demolished. In fact, the interior furnishings had already been auctioned off, and the production company actually had to buy back some of the items in order to have authentic decor.

sopas ej Dec 1, 2009 7:56 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Johnny Socko (Post 4585885)
I was always intrigued by the Brew 102 building as a kid. This was in the mid-1970's, so the building was abandoned by then. It struck me as odd that what seemed to be a popular brand not long ago had disappeared so quickly.

But the Friedman Bag Company remained, and in Sopas' picture above you can see that the multi-colored roof vents referenced earlier in this thread are still there (the building is now a self-storage center).

The gasometers (the huge gas storage tanks) were before my time. I didn't even know they had existed until I saw some historic photos of the area recently!

Anyone interested in the Ambassador Hotel should rent the film "Bobby". It's as much about the Ambassador itself as it is about the assassination of RFK. It was the last film shot on location at the hotel before it was demolished. In fact, the interior furnishings had already been auctioned off, and the production company actually had to buy back some of the items in order to have authentic decor.

Welcome to the thread, Johnny Socko! :)

You and I must be about the same age, I'm guessing.

Hehe I first saw images of the gas storage tanks in that episode of "I Love Lucy" called "Hollywood at Last" when the Ricardos and Mertzes finally arrive in LA from their road trip across the country. You see them driving into that downtown slot and you can clearly see the storage tanks. I remember as a kid wondering what they were and why they weren't there anymore. Incidentally, you also see them pulling up to their fictional hotel, which in the series was supposed to be in Hollywood but in actuality that building, which still exists, is in Beverly Hills, on Olympic Blvd.

GaylordWilshire Dec 1, 2009 10:25 PM

The Beverly Palms
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by sopas ej (Post 4586070)
Welcome to the thread, Johnny Socko! :)

You and I must be about the same age, I'm guessing.

Hehe I first saw images of the gas storage tanks in that episode of "I Love Lucy" called "Hollywood at Last" when the Ricardos and Mertzes finally arrive in LA from their road trip across the country. You see them driving into that downtown slot and you can clearly see the storage tanks. I remember as a kid wondering what they were and why they weren't there anymore. Incidentally, you also see them pulling up to their fictional hotel, which in the series was supposed to be in Hollywood but in actuality that building, which still exists, is in Beverly Hills, on Olympic Blvd.

Well, it was called the Beverly Palms...but as I remember, the matte painting representing the view out of their room was of Hollywood.... I am going to have to look for the tanks in that arrival episode. I seem to remember "The Stack" making an appearance.... Next time anyone on the blog is cruising around town, please take a picture of the Olympic Bl hotel and post.

Johnny Socko Dec 1, 2009 10:26 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by sopas ej (Post 4586070)
Welcome to the thread, Johnny Socko! :)

You and I must be about the same age, I'm guessing.

Hehe I first saw images of the gas storage tanks in that episode of "I Love Lucy" called "Hollywood at Last" when the Ricardos and Mertzes finally arrive in LA from their road trip across the country. You see them driving into that downtown slot and you can clearly see the storage tanks. I remember as a kid wondering what they were and why they weren't there anymore. Incidentally, you also see them pulling up to their fictional hotel, which in the series was supposed to be in Hollywood but in actuality that building, which still exists, is in Beverly Hills, on Olympic Blvd.

That's interesting about the "I Love Lucy" exterior shot in Beverly Hills. I enjoy watching those "Hollywood" episodes too, but because of the interior view. Not the Mid-century Moderne decor (although that is cool), but the view "outside". I don't think they ever say on the show where their fictional hotel is located, but the POV of the backdrop is clearly at Sunset & Vine (where the old Desilu studios were, or so I've read), with the balcony looking north up Vine St from about the 10th floor or so.

If you look closely at the backdrop, you can see Hollywood & Vine in the distance, marked by the Broadway building on the west side of the street. Immediately South of The Broadway is a slightly smaller building with a large "Plaza" sign on top. That is the former Hollywood Plaza Hotel, and my mother-in-law currently lives in that building. :D

The building is visible in the backdrop of this museum re-creation of the "Lucy" set, but the "Plaza" sign is washed out. It's basically the nearest visible building on the west side of the street.

http://onetanktrips.files.wordpress....d-close-up.jpg

GaylordWilshire Dec 2, 2009 1:04 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by sopas ej (Post 4586070)
I first saw images of the gas storage tanks in that episode of "I Love Lucy" called "Hollywood at Last" when the Ricardos and Mertzes finally arrive in LA from their road trip across the country.

I am reading the new book Los Angeles: Portrait of a City--I hate the frequent mistakes in the captions, but am managing to enjoy the book anyway--quite a treasure trove, actually. Anyway, it seems that there was a gas storage tank right across from the S Norton Ave lot (3900 block) where the Black Dahlia was found... (p 341). There used to be some tanks here in NYC, over in Queens...traffic reports of backups at the "Elmhurst Tanks" are a memory now. Btw Socko--that picture of the Beverly Palms room recreation is great. Have got to find myself some drum lampshades.

sopas ej Dec 2, 2009 2:13 AM

I'm digging that Beverly Palms room too.

Speaking of which:

Video Link


You can see the gas tanks and a bit of the "Beverly Palms" exterior. The Ricardos and Mertzes nearly get broadsided too as they turn into the driveway.

If and when I get the chance some time, maybe I'll dash on over to Beverly Hills and take a picture of it. It'd be cool if Bobby the Bellboy could show me around. :P

ethereal_reality Dec 2, 2009 2:30 AM

Isn't this pretty much the night view from the Richardo's hotel?


http://img141.imageshack.us/img141/9...ndvinenort.jpg
usc


....albeit several blocks closer and from ground level. :)

CRE8IVEDESTRUCTION Dec 2, 2009 4:24 AM

I'm loving this thread!! Please keep the old pics coming. L.A is a very noirish town indeed. Coincidently, I was watching the 1950 noir film "D.O.A". There's several scenes in the end that show how vibrant the Historic core in downtown used to be. You can clearly see shots of of the "Hotel Rosslyn" and "Million Dollar Hotel" all lit up...(the whole film is uploaded on Youtube btw)

sopas ej Dec 2, 2009 9:13 AM

:previous:
"D.O.A." is a great film noir. I just recently learned that another great film noir called "Shockproof" will be released on DVD; I saw a restored print of that film a few years ago at the Film Noir Festival at the Egyptian Theatre in Hollywood. It shows great shots of Bunker Hill from the late 1940s; the film itself was released in 1949. From what I've heard, that film hadn't been seen in years, as it wasn't really available on video for a long time. Douglas Sirk directed "Shockproof," which surprised me, because I've only associated him with his technicolor melodramas from the 1950s.

________________________________________________________________

I found the link on the LADOT website that I and I'm sure many of you may find interesting. They've retitled the link "Transportation History in Southern California." In it you'll find very interesting tidbits about streetlights, traffic lights, etc. in LA and environs. And if anyone's ever been curious about those weird "subway" stairs that go into some sidewalks that are now closed and caged over with chain-link, you'll learn what those are about too; I remember as a kid being very curious about them. You'll also learn that California has always had red stop signs, back when every other state had yellow stop signs... really interesting things to read about.

Click here: Transportation Topics and Tales: Milestones in Transportation History in Southern California

Los Angeles Past Dec 2, 2009 10:26 AM

Some more interesting road signs from the 1930s-'40s.

Here's one of the Auto Club So. Cal. stop signs from the 1930s with the spherical glass marble reflectors. I set out to steal one of these back when I was a teenager, but I failed - quite spectacularly, actually. That story is here. (That post also has a good close-up photo of the reflective marbles.)
https://otters.net/img/lanoir/socalautostopsign.jpg

Here's a Auto Club So. Cal. stop sign from the 1940s, with the more-familiar plastic reflectors:
https://otters.net/img/lanoir/IMG_1274.jpg

An Auto Club milage sign. Still quite common in and around L.A. when I was young.
https://otters.net/img/lanoir/victoryblvdsign.jpg

A sign like this was shown in a previous photo of Wilshire Blvd. in this thread. I'm too tired to look it up right now, though...
https://otters.net/img/lanoir/autoclub20mph.jpg


https://otters.net/img/lanoir/bstop.jpg

These porcelain enamel reflectorized RR XING signs were ubiquitous when I was little, too...
https://otters.net/img/lanoir/rrxing1.jpg
Various eBay

-Scott

Los Angeles Past Dec 2, 2009 10:33 AM

A vintage photo of the 1912 Hotel Clark, found on eBay in 2006. Quite an imposing building! It still stands today on the east side of Hill Street between Fourth and Fifth. I love the close-ups of the street and the much-older Occidental Hotel...


https://otters.net/img/lanoir/h34a.jpg


https://otters.net/img/lanoir/h34b.jpg


https://otters.net/img/lanoir/h34c.jpg


https://otters.net/img/lanoir/h34d.jpg


https://otters.net/img/lanoir/h34e.jpg
eBay user fxk19

-Scott

GaylordWilshire Dec 2, 2009 1:38 PM

Do Not Miss
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by Los Angeles Past (Post 4587361)
Here's one of the Auto Club So. Cal. stop signs from the 1930s with the spherical glass marble reflectors. I set out to steal one of these back when I was a teenager, but I failed - quite spectacularly, actually. That story is here.

Everyone: LA Past's tawdry noir tale of his almost-criminal past is a must-read. I am reminded of James Ellroy's My Dark Places.

sopas ej Dec 2, 2009 6:38 PM

:previous:
Hehe! I read it. Tawdry indeed, but he redeems himself. ;)

LA Past, great pics above! It's funny to see horse-and-wagons parked along the curb with autos. It's like did people need driver's licenses for those? :)

Johnny Socko Dec 2, 2009 9:17 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by CRE8IVEDESTRUCTION (Post 4587012)
I'm loving this thread!! Please keep the old pics coming. L.A is a very noirish town indeed. Coincidently, I was watching the 1950 noir film "D.O.A". There's several scenes in the end that show how vibrant the Historic core in downtown used to be. You can clearly see shots of of the "Hotel Rosslyn" and "Million Dollar Hotel" all lit up...(the whole film is uploaded on Youtube btw)

I started a new commute in July, which requires me to drive from East L.A. towards downtown in the evening. Once it finally started getting dark earlier, I saw that the massive Million Dollar Hotel rooftop neon sign has been restored. Quite spectacular. Maybe it's been like that for a while, but I live west of downtown and the sign faces east, so I've never noticed it! (Although my view from home would almost certainly be blocked by the Bunker Hill towers anyway.)

BTW, the wonderful Bendix sign malfunctioned about two weeks ago -- ever since then, only the big "B" has been lighting up, the other letters are dark.

Johnny Socko Dec 2, 2009 9:24 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by sopas ej (Post 4587336)
I found the link on the LADOT website that I and I'm sure many of you may find interesting. They've retitled the link "Transportation History in Southern California." In it you'll find very interesting tidbits about streetlights, traffic lights, etc. in LA and environs. And if anyone's ever been curious about those weird "subway" stairs that go into some sidewalks that are now closed and caged over with chain-link, you'll learn what those are about too; I remember as a kid being very curious about them. You'll also learn that California has always had red stop signs, back when every other state had yellow stop signs... really interesting things to read about.

Click here: Transportation Topics and Tales: Milestones in Transportation History in Southern California

Hmm, this link did not work for me. Anybody else have better luck?

GaylordWilshire Dec 2, 2009 10:06 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Johnny Socko (Post 4588111)
Hmm, this link did not work for me. Anybody else have better luck?

It took forever until I upgraded to Adobe Reader 9. I also downloaded -- I could email it to you. (I guess that would work.)

Johnny Socko Dec 3, 2009 12:17 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by GaylordWilshire (Post 4588178)
It took forever until I upgraded to Adobe Reader 9. I also downloaded -- I could email it to you. (I guess that would work.)

No thanks, I just didn't realize that the "non-responsive" page was really a "slow to load" page. Sometimes it's hard to tell the difference...

Johnny Socko Dec 3, 2009 8:09 PM

Talk about "LA Noir" -- there was an officer-involved shooting across the street this morning, and both Occidental Blvd and Hoover St are now blocked by LAPD. A local homeless guy told me that the suspect made it inside a building, and then it became a barricade situation. I've never seen so many cops in my life, and there are two LAPD helicopters circling! They NEVER call-in two choppers!

As of right now, there seems to be a news blackout on the whole situation. Nothing on KNX or any of the local media sites.

How ya like me NOW, Hammett?! :P

Los Angeles Past Dec 4, 2009 9:12 AM

Hotel Melrose
 
One of my favorite Bunker Hill landmarks: the old Hotel Melrose (1882-1957), 130 South Grand Avenue.

https://otters.net/img/lanoir/1946CHS-13064.jpg
USC


The Melrose and its next-door neighbor, the Hotel Richelieu.

https://otters.net/img/lanoir/00007383.jpg
LAPL


Old and 'new' Melrose...

https://otters.net/img/lanoir/1940s00007382.jpg
LAPL


120 South Grand:

https://otters.net/img/lanoir/1957EXM-N-12099-0015.jpg
USC


Note proximity to other downtown landmarks:

https://otters.net/img/lanoir/1957EXM-N-12099-0011.jpg
USC



View of Los Angeles from the Hotel Melrose, circa 1914:

Looking east:

https://otters.net/img/lanoir/1914CHS-5711.jpg
USC

https://otters.net/img/lanoir/1914CHS-5712.jpg
USC


Toward the southeast (c. 1905):

https://otters.net/img/lanoir/CHS-2316.jpg
USC


If you could stand on the front porch of the Melrose today, and look across the street, this is what you'd see. (You probably recognize the location better now.) :tup:

https://otters.net/img/lanoir/disney...d_googstvw.jpg
Google



Check-out time, 1957.

https://otters.net/img/lanoir/1957EXM-N-12099-0013.jpg
USC


https://otters.net/img/lanoir/1957EXM-N-12099-0014.jpg
USC


https://otters.net/img/lanoir/EXM-N-12099-0012.jpg
USC


Posted to my blog here.

GaylordWilshire Dec 4, 2009 1:36 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Los Angeles Past (Post 4591071)
One of my favorite Bunker Hill landmarks: the old Hotel Melrose, 130 South Grand Avenue, ?1946.

What a great set of photos, Scott. The Old Melrose reminds me of the Mooers house, still standing on S Bonnie Brae:

http://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedi...s_Angeles).jpg

ethereal_reality Dec 4, 2009 4:57 PM

Excellent series of photographs Scott. They're some of the best I've seen.
Thanks for posting them. :)

Los Angeles Past Dec 6, 2009 3:36 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by ethereal_reality (Post 4591397)
Excellent series of photographs Scott. They're some of the best I've seen.
Thanks for posting them. :)

I'm glad you liked them! Everything I've posted has been in gratitude for your starting this thread in the first place, you know. Although I write a blog on L.A. history, I'm still far from being a real expert myself, and I can honestly say this thread has contributed greatly to my knowledge of old Los Angeles. I suspect it's also done the same for many others who have merely lurked as we've posted here...


----------


I've come across an interesting collection of charcoal sketches of noir-era Los Angeles, drawn during the period of 1934-1937. The copyright statement seems to prohibit free reproduction in a public forum like this one, so I'll pass on the URL instead:

http://oac.cdlib.org/findaid/ark:/13...doc.view=items

sopas ej Dec 6, 2009 4:52 PM

Yeah Scott, great photos! I'm particularly fascinated by this one:
http://i699.photobucket.com/albums/v...12099-0011.jpg
USC

I've seen a few old pictures of the Melrose Hotel on Bunker Hill but never one showing it next to a "newer" building which still exists. It blew me away because I've walked in front of where the Melrose would be many times, and didn't realize that that was where it was. Kinda sad, considering the site is now occupied by what was supposed to be a temporary parking structure but is still very much in existence. That "paved paradise and put up a parking lot" lyric comes to mind.

ethereal_reality Dec 7, 2009 2:09 AM

Below: The Rex Arms at 945 Orange Street near Figueroa.


http://img515.imageshack.us/img515/7...apartments.jpg
usc digital library


Orange Street would later become Wilshire Blvd.


http://img515.imageshack.us/img515/1...maplosange.jpg

ethereal_reality Dec 7, 2009 2:20 AM

Here are a couple more impressive structures in the vicinity.




Below: 1111-1117 S. Figueroa Street. Built in 1885.


http://img29.imageshack.us/img29/264...sfigueroas.jpg
usc digital archive




Below: Figueroa between 11th & 12th Street. Built in 1889.


http://img515.imageshack.us/img515/3...abte11th12.jpg
usc digital archive



Quite possibly the same architect....don't ya think. :)

CRE8IVEDESTRUCTION Dec 7, 2009 7:46 PM

I thought I'd post this link here...

http://www.noiroftheweek.com/2007/12...bait-1949.html

...This noir is very underrated. The reason why I'm posting it here is because there's a classic scene filmed at Westlake Park (Now MacArthur Park) that show's the way the park and it's neighborhood used to be. I think you guy's would appreciate it. You can watch the whole movie on the link I posted btw.

CRE8IVEDESTRUCTION Dec 8, 2009 1:34 AM

So, I had the right film but upon reviewing it after my post, I realized the scene that I spoke of wasn't even in the film. Clearly this is the chopped up version...sorry folks.

Johnny Socko Dec 8, 2009 9:06 PM

A while back someone posted a pictorial of historic Ralphs locations. One of them was 3rd & Vermont, and in fact there is still a Ralphs at that location today. It's quite ramshackle though, and I prefer to shop at the Vons across the street (NE corner), with its spotless upkeep and courteous staff. However, most Vons shoppers are probably unaware of the historical significance of this location.

The actual parcel occupied by Vons was formerly the location of the Palomar Ballroom. I do not know much about this venue, so I'd be greatly interested to learn more if anyone here is familiar with it.

Adjacent to this lot, and a bit more familiar to me (from past research) is the former location of the Bimini Baths.

In 1903, Dr. David Edwards opened the Bimini Baths, a spa and "plunge" (public swimming pool) built on a natural hot spring. The Daily Mirror posted the original 1902 Times article on the grand opening here.

Spas & bath-houses were popular in Los Angeles at the turn of the 20th Century, but much like amusement piers, they seemed to have a predilection for burning to the ground (how many of each did Abbott Kinney have to rebuild?!). The Bimini Baths were no exception, and the spa was reduced to briquettes by 1905; but Dr. Edwards promptly rebuilt a much grander facility, seen here:

http://www.ulwaf.com/Site-Images/Bimini.gif

(I had a much bigger version of this image once upon a time; curse me for losing it.)

The Bimini Baths were located at 2nd St (coming off Vermont, behind the present-day Vons) and Bimini Place (coming South off 1st St and its LARY streetcar line). Across Bimini Place from the spa was a deluxe hotel, also developed by Dr. Edwards. This building still exists (as does Bimini Place), although now it is an apartment building dedicated to people in recovery. It is referred to in some articles as the "Bimini Inn"; however, the 1930's-era photo above shows the rooftop sign identifying it as the Rayfield, which it is still called today:

http://farm3.static.flickr.com/2569/...749453b396.jpg

I found an outstanding Times article here (presumably scanned, hence the weird typos), which includes details about the history of Bimini Baths, and also mentions local features like Bimini Slough and the Palomar Ballroom.

Amazingly, the Bimini Baths lasted until 1951, but it seems to have disappeared from the public consciousness even moreso than other Ragtime-era attractions in Los Angeles.

Johnny Socko Dec 8, 2009 9:28 PM

As a post-script to the above, I should mention that the site is now occupied in part by the Bresee Community Center. The Bresee site has some historical information, including this tidbit:

Quote:

Though the schools and many of the neighborhoods in this area were integrated as far back as the 1930s, both the Bimini Baths and the Palomar Ballroom refused to allow anyone of color to enter their premises. In fact, it is now commonly believed that the Bimini Baths were closed down in 1950 when civil rights groups picketed the facility to force it to accept African-Americans.
One of the articles I've read mentioned how the Bimini Baths also did not admit Asians. As for the reason for its ultimate failure, the 2004 Times article linked at the bottom of my previous post states that the Bimini Baths went bankrupt due to mounting liability claims and overall dwindling business, which is certainly plausible; a picket may not have been necessary to shut it down.

Regardless of why this landmark ultimately closed its doors, it is indeed to our community's shame that it was a discriminatory business for its entire history.

sopas ej Dec 8, 2009 10:24 PM

:previous:

Very interesting tidbits about the Bimini Baths. I remember reading the LA Times article about it some time ago.

What I'd like to note in the photo you posted:
http://www.ulwaf.com/Site-Images/Bimini.gif

Notice the wash or creek/arroyo nearby the Bimini Baths. Apparently much of the LA Basin was crisscrossed by these, I assume some even are the result of earthquake faults. Many of these were filled in or graded to be level when developments started being built. Of course some washes still exist and you'll see them in random places, sometimes even within residential neighorhoods, though of course now they're lined with concrete.

But going back to the Bimini Baths, I've read that it was also a big cruising spot for gay men and a place for casual sex. And incidentally, I've also read that the oldest bath house still in existence in LA is in downtown, on 4th Street near Los Angeles Street. It used to be called the Palace Turkish Baths, or something, and was also a place for gay men to have casual sex; I think it's been in existence since at least the 1920s. Currently it's officially a gay bath house called KLYT.

GaylordWilshire Dec 8, 2009 11:11 PM

Very interesting posts re the Bimini.
Quote:

Originally Posted by sopas ej (Post 4597737)
: KLYT.

I take it that this establishment caters to the ladies?

ethereal_reality Dec 8, 2009 11:11 PM

That's very interesting about the Bimini Baths Johnny Socko.
(if you ever find the larger image please post it...it looks like a great building)


You had also mentioned the Palomar Ballroom at 3rd and Vermont.
Here's an interesting website with details and photographs.

http://www.100megspopup.com/ark/PalomarBlrm.html



http://img134.imageshack.us/img134/7...arballroom.jpg





http://img341.imageshack.us/img341/5...09palomar2.jpg



http://img341.imageshack.us/img341/5...ballroomab.jpg

It's sad demise.

Johnny Socko Dec 9, 2009 5:55 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by sopas ej (Post 4597737)
:previous:

Very interesting tidbits about the Bimini Baths. I remember reading the LA Times article about it some time ago.

What I'd like to note in the photo you posted:
http://www.ulwaf.com/Site-Images/Bimini.gif

Notice the wash or creek/arroyo nearby the Bimini Baths. Apparently much of the LA Basin was crisscrossed by these, I assume some even are the result of earthquake faults. Many of these were filled in or graded to be level when developments started being built. Of course some washes still exist and you'll see them in random places, sometimes even within residential neighorhoods, though of course now they're lined with concrete.

The arroyo you pointed out was actually the Bimini Slough, which was eventually filled-in because it was used as a local dumping ground and had become an eyesore. You can still see evidence of the former topography in the low ground that runs parallel and just west of Westmoreland Avenue in this area. The dip is quite pronounced where 1st St crosses the old channel near the Virgil St intersection.

About two years ago there was an article in the LA Weekly about the Los Angeles Basin's historic streams and arroyos that have been lost to development. It was one of the most interesting stories I've read about LA geography in a long while. I haven't had any luck finding it, but if I do I will post a link here.

Oh, and what great photos of the Palomar Ballroom. You even got one of it burning! Here's a quote taken from that same Bresee Center web page I quoted from earlier, in regard to the Palomar's discriminatory policies:

Quote:

Some believe that the Palomar Ballroom was intentionally torched because Count Basie was scheduled to play there; he would have been the first black band to play the Palomar.

sopas ej Dec 9, 2009 6:05 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by GaylordWilshire (Post 4597827)
Very interesting posts re the Bimini. I take it that this establishment caters to the ladies?

Hehe you would think a place called "KLYT" would be for the ladies, huh? But no, it's for the guys.

I looked it up online; this is from a 1967 phone book, which would suggest that at this point, the Palace Turkish Baths had been around since at least 1905:
http://www.gaytubs.com/images/palace.jpg
from gaytubs.com


Here's a contemporary photo of 132 E. 4th Street courtesy of Google Earth:
http://img32.imageshack.us/img32/2230/klyt.jpg

KLYT is in the building that says "Charmed Fashion." It's the door on the left. Makes me wonder what this area looked like in 1905.

sopas ej Dec 9, 2009 6:12 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Johnny Socko (Post 4598446)
The arroyo you pointed out was actually the Bimini Slough, which was eventually filled-in because it was used as a local dumping ground and had become an eyesore. You can still see evidence of the former topography in the low ground that runs parallel and just west of Westmoreland Avenue in this area. The dip is quite pronounced where 1st St crosses the old channel near the Virgil St intersection.

About two years ago there was an article in the LA Weekly about the Los Angeles Basin's historic streams and arroyos that have been lost to development. It was one of the most interesting stories I've read about LA geography in a long while. I haven't had any luck finding it, but if I do I will post a link here.

Oh, and what great photos of the Palomar Ballroom. You even got one of it burning! Here's a quote taken from that same Bresee Center web page I quoted from earlier, in regard to the Palomar's discriminatory policies:

Great info. That would be great if you could find a link to that LA Weekly story. I really love LA history.

Johnny Socko Dec 9, 2009 6:57 PM

The Lost Streams of Los Angeles
 
Found it! The Lost Streams of Los Angeles, courtesy LA Weekly.

:previous: This is a must-read for geography geeks (like me), and armchair historians in general.

After I first read this article, I started paying attention to the topography in my neighborhood (Westlake), and could see where development had covered the old streambeds leading to the natural basins of MacArthur and Lafayette parks.

The aforementioned Bimini Slough was an outlet for Silver Lake before it was developed as a proper "lake". According to an old map posted in the Daily Mirror blog, it ran from there all the way down to 6th & Alexandria. The map depicted a proposed (circa 1917) greenbelt redevelopment project for Bimini Slough called "Silver Lake Parkway":

http://latimesblogs.latimes.com/phot...ke_parkway.jpg

sopas ej Dec 9, 2009 10:12 PM

:previous:
Very interesting, Johnny Socko! And thanks for posting that link to the LA Weekly story. I can't read it right now because I'm at work (and I have lots to do with a big deadline) but I'll definitely read it when I get home.

There's a neighborhood off of Wilshire Blvd. near Hancock Park called Brookside, and according to a book I have about Wilshire Blvd., it's called that because an actual brook or creek runs through there behind some of the homes, and it's considered one of LA's "well-kept secrets" by the people who live in the area and like the creek.

GaylordWilshire Dec 9, 2009 11:32 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by sopas ej (Post 4599474)
:previous:
Very interesting, Johnny Socko! And thanks for posting that link to the LA Weekly story. I can't read it right now because I'm at work (and I have lots to do with a big deadline) but I'll definitely read it when I get home.

There's a neighborhood off of Wilshire Blvd. near Hancock Park called Brookside, and according to a book I have about Wilshire Blvd., it's called that because an actual brook or creek runs through there behind some of the homes, and it's considered one of LA's "well-kept secrets" by the people who live in the area and like the creek.

That's it! Sopas, I have been scratching my head thinking about where I've read about a creek or a wash west of Crenshaw, south of Wilshire, it seems to me it was-- I read it in the Wilshire Blvd book. Ok--someone in Los-Ang-liss has got to sneak into those back yards and take a picture...

sopas ej Dec 10, 2009 7:19 AM

I got this satellite shot from Google Earth; you can see where the natural creek runs in the Brookside neighborhood:

http://img43.imageshack.us/img43/2016/brookside.jpg

ethereal_reality Dec 10, 2009 8:33 PM

^^^That's an excellent find sopas_ej.

ethereal_reality Dec 10, 2009 10:18 PM

Here are a couple more photos I found of the Bimini Baths and Rainbow Gardens/Palomar Ballroom.


Below: The entrance to the Bimini Baths.

http://img80.imageshack.us/img80/209...athentranc.jpg
usc digital archive



Below: The Rainbow Gardens would eventually become the Palomar Ballroom.



http://img80.imageshack.us/img80/840...bowgardens.jpg
usc archive


Below: Palomar Ballroom.

http://img341.imageshack.us/img341/5...09palomar2.jpg


Obviously the same place.

I'm guessing it was originally the Rainbow Gardens by the early make of automobiles
and the rainbow shape on the sign that carries over to the Palomar days. Does anyone know for sure?



postscript:

I did find some answers at this web site.

www.iajrc.org/archive/palomar.htm

The article is written by Floyd Levin.
He was actually at the Palomar Ballroom on the night of the fire Oct. 2, 1939.

ethereal_reality Dec 10, 2009 11:07 PM

The internet never ceases to amaze me.
A hour ago I only knew the building as the Palomar Ballroom.
As one clue led to another...all the pieces fell into place.

It was originally built as the El Patio Ballroom, then it was Rainbow Gardens
and finally the Palomar Ballroom.




By knowing the ballroom's original name I was able to find this aerial.


http://img263.imageshack.us/img263/4...biminiaeri.jpg
lapl


The Bimini Baths and the Rayfield Building are on the left, and the El Patio Ballroom
(the future Palomar Ballroom) is on the right.



Thanks to the following blog
http://laecovillage.wordpress.com/20...-bimini-baths/

Johnny Socko Dec 11, 2009 1:13 AM

Awesome find! The present-day Vons is directly on top of the old Palomar building site (and then some -- it's a big market).

Interesting to see how much more hilly the neighborhood looks in that aerial. The hills are still there (unlike much of downtown), but they are camouflaged by development. One thing that's NOT there now is the green space of the Bimini Slough. Also, it looks like the 3rd St extension hadn't gone through yet when that picture was taken.

ethereal_reality Dec 11, 2009 2:30 AM

Johnny Socko you mentioned the Bimini Slough ;
several times today I came across references to Sacatela Creek.

I believe they are possibly one and the same.

http://militantangeleno.blogspot.com...search-of.html

Johnny Socko Dec 11, 2009 10:31 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by ethereal_reality (Post 4601695)
Johnny Socko you mentioned the Bimini Slough ;
several times today I came across references to Sacatela Creek.

I believe they are possibly one and the same.

Thanks, that name didn't ring a bell until I re-read the "Lost Streams" article from LA Weekly.

That was a great blog entry you linked to, btw. Finally, an explanation for the Shakespeare Bridge! It's weird how something you've always wondered about in one part of the city is directly linked to something you're already familiar with in another part (and this is far from the first time that's happened to me). LA...it's a trip.

ethereal_reality Dec 12, 2009 4:34 PM

How's this for serendipity

Today's L.A. Times
http://latimesblogs.latimes.com/home...sica-hall.html

ethereal_reality Dec 13, 2009 10:51 PM

A few weeks ago I posted a photograph showing the 102 Brewery.


The following are 4 more photos taken on that same day from atop City Hall.



http://img264.imageshack.us/img264/5...yhall1952d.jpg
usc archive







http://img264.imageshack.us/img264/7...yhall1952e.jpg
usc archive








http://img264.imageshack.us/img264/7...tyhall1952.jpg
usc archive








http://img264.imageshack.us/img264/8...ountyhospi.jpg
usc archive


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