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  #23901  
Old Posted Oct 1, 2014, 2:41 PM
oldstuff oldstuff is offline
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Originally Posted by ProphetM View Post
The Richfield Oil Company took this idea even further as a promotional tool, and erected a whole series of beacons along the entire west coast in 1928-29 to guide both flyers and drivers. Each was 125 feet high with a revolving beacon of 8 million candlepower, and most had a service station at the base, which were downright opulent compared to any other gas station of the day. Even the pumps featured specially designed encasements, including - instead of the typical logo globe topper - a miniature version of the Richfield racing car sculpture that has been pictured many times on this thread. This was placed atop the regular gasoline pump, while a similar airplane sculpture topped the Ethyl pump.

I happen to have a short book on the subject right now, as I have been making a Google Map of all the Richfield beacons. The tower & beacon on top of the long-lost beloved Richfield Building in DTLA was a part of this chain. As you might guess, the Great Depression put an end to plans to complete additional service stations at the towers that didn't yet have them, as Richfield soon entered receivership. Also scrapped were plans for an entire travelers' community with dining and lodging at each site. Only the beacon in Barstow ended up with the full treatment.

Though the tower on the Richfield Building was 4-sided, the other towers were 3-sided, with 'RICHFIELD' spelled out vertically on two sides and a two-letter code on the third side to indicate the location to flyers. All but one of the California service stations were of an identical design in the Mission Revival style. The northernmost CA station, and all of the ones in OR and WA, had the same footprint but were of an English Norman design. The tower usually sat directly in front, between the station and the road.

The operational life of the towers as aids to navigation was short; within 10 years they were essentially obsolete as radio navigation matured. Many remained for decades as promotional tools however, with some being used to advertise other businesses at the sites long after the Richfield lettering was removed. A few of these station buildings survive, including one mission-style station that still has its tower in Willows, CA, and one English Norman station with tower and two-letter code in Mt. Shasta, CA. The closest remaining building to Los Angeles is in Paso Robles, which retained its tower into the 1990s until a road widening and redevelopment of the property. The beacon from atop the tower at Capistrano Beach now resides at the Dana Point Historical Society's museum. The tower once located at Castaic Junction (just north of Six Flags Magic Mountain) was purchased by the LA County Fire Department in 1943 for reuse as a broadcasting tower in the mountains north of Chatsworth, near Michael Antonovich Regional Park. It may still be there today, or the current tower could be a replacement.


Auto Club of So. Cal's Touring Topics, November 1928
Another note: from the 1920's through to about 1953 there were airports in the area, which are no longer there. Most notably Vail Field, which was located just southwest of the area of the beacon. There are maps on the site "Abandoned Airfields" which show its location as well as that of Montebello Airport, later East Los Angeles Airport, which was founded in the early 40's and lasted only into the early 50's. Some old maps show as many as three other airfields in the area. If someone who can post pictures would check the site and post the maps it would be clear where they were located. Vail in particular, was used apparently as a training field during the war.

When looking at a current map of the area, we see Vail Avenue and also interestingly "Mines Avenue" also in the area, Mines being the original name of LAX
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  #23902  
Old Posted Oct 1, 2014, 10:24 PM
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We've seen many accidents on NLA, but this one doesn't ring a bell. (for me anyway)

March 10, 1946

http://www.laweekly.com/informer/200...-march-10-1946

"This traffic accident occurred in front of highland Park's Arroyo Seco branch of the public library at Figueroa and Piedmont.
It involved a trolley car, a motorcycle and two cars."

__
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  #23903  
Old Posted Oct 1, 2014, 10:35 PM
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Quote:


http://digital2.library.ucla.edu/vie...198/zz00288b0t


This is a most remarkable image, from the negatives of the Los Angeles Daily News collection at UCLA. To me, it is as noir as it gets.
I agree Lorendoc, that's quite a photograph. Here's another noirish look at downtown Los Angeles from 25 years earlier!!

1911

http://memoriastoica.tumblr.com/post/61564043603

I was intrigued by, what appeared to be, a hot air balloon on the right. (yes, I know...I have quite an imagination )



alas, it's a LARGE orb crowning a turret on an unidentified building.

detail

...also, can anyone read what it says under the eave on that white building on the left? -it looks like Victor something.

__

Last edited by ethereal_reality; Oct 2, 2014 at 2:05 PM.
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  #23904  
Old Posted Oct 1, 2014, 10:53 PM
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I found this picture of the Los Angeles Police Station in the UCLA Library. It's dated July 8, 1971.

"IMPROVISED CRIB--Policewoman Pat Johnson, 28, tends a baby girl, about 9 months old, who was found alone and crying in a downtown hotel room. Baby was placed in file drawer for a nap after she was fed milk, Jell-O and cottage cheese. She later was taken to a foster home. The hotel manager called police after receiving complaints that the baby had been crying for hours."


UCLA Library Digital Collections
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  #23905  
Old Posted Oct 1, 2014, 10:56 PM
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Aw, soooo cute! -and the baby isn't bad either.

__
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  #23906  
Old Posted Oct 1, 2014, 11:10 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ethereal_reality View Post
We've seen many accidents on NLA, but this one doesn't ring a bell. (for me anyway)

March 10, 1946

http://www.laweekly.com/informer/200...-march-10-1946

"This traffic accident occurred in front of highland Park's Arroyo Seco branch of the public library at Figueroa and Piedmont.
It involved a trolley car, a motorcycle and two cars."

__
I believe this has been posted twice before on NLA..ER.. It does appear to have an odd drama to it. No women around, who might have been a bit more helpful than this gaggle of staring males. Hopefully an ambulance was on the way from the local fire station.
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  #23907  
Old Posted Oct 1, 2014, 11:17 PM
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Originally Posted by ethereal_reality View Post
Here's a group of sepia photographs I found on ebay of the Von's Supermarket at the Crenshaw Shopping Center.
The shopping center was built in 1947 and I believe the Von's followed one or two years later...so these photos are probably around 1949.

detail / note the sans-serif V's on the collars of their smocks. pretty cool!


__

Cool photo ER. Notice the case is packed with ice in the front. We also see the frost covered coils at the top of the case and the cute slices of citrus fruit.

ebay

I assume the "V" on their collars stand for VONS. Might this photo have been taken on a Friday? [APOSTOLIC CONSTITUTION PAENITEMINI ] It reminds of the fun days of yesteryear when Fr. Dominic would invite me up to his room for a couple of shots of whiskey.........


Last edited by CityBoyDoug; Oct 1, 2014 at 11:36 PM.
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  #23908  
Old Posted Oct 1, 2014, 11:36 PM
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For some reason, I really like this amateur snapshot.

-smiling waving girls on an unidentified street in Hollywood, 1942.

http://www.ebay.com/itm/VINTAGE-1942...item27ecc83872

seller says
"This photo was cut out of an album.
The back is covered in glue and paper.
Album said Hollywood 1942."

"I will be posting more photographs from this album."
__

I can't wait to see the other photographs! ...maybe we'll be able to piece together a narrative.

__

Last edited by ethereal_reality; Oct 1, 2014 at 11:49 PM.
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  #23909  
Old Posted Oct 2, 2014, 1:51 AM
Mstimc Mstimc is offline
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Originally Posted by ethereal_reality View Post
Aw, soooo cute! -and the baby isn't bad either.

__
She could be packing some serious heat in that beehive hairdo!
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  #23910  
Old Posted Oct 2, 2014, 2:27 AM
Lorendoc Lorendoc is offline
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thank you to...

Quote:
Originally Posted by Graybeard View Post
...Graybeard for the image processing, I like being able to see more details.
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  #23911  
Old Posted Oct 2, 2014, 3:33 AM
Lorendoc Lorendoc is offline
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Originally Posted by ethereal_reality View Post
Here's another Broadway view from 25 years earlier!

1911

http://memoriastoica.tumblr.com/post/61564043603

alas, it's a LARGE orb crowning a turret on an unidentified building.

detail

...also, can anyone read what it says under the eave on that white building on the left? -it looks like Victor something.

__
Thanks for that night picture, e_r. It is a lot more "primitive" looking somehow, what a difference 25 years make.

The view is from three blocks east of Broadway, looking east down E 5th Street. The building on the left is the "Victor Ponet Building" (early capitalist, Belgian consul, real estate developer).

The clues are the Somerset House (214 E 5th) and the bright sign "5 cents G[lobe] T[heater] which was at 202 E 5th. I think the picture was taken from the six-story Hotel Baltimore, which was and is at the SW corner of 5th and Los Angeles Sts. I am guessing the air balloon-turret probably was part of the hotel.

The GSV seems to indicate some sort of spherical design thingie still remains on top of the hotel:


GSV

Last edited by Lorendoc; Oct 2, 2014 at 3:55 AM.
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  #23912  
Old Posted Oct 2, 2014, 1:40 PM
Earl Boebert Earl Boebert is online now
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Larry Harnisch, ladailymirror.com, is doing a series on the unsolved 1944 murder of oil heiress Georgette Bauerdorf in West Hollywood. Lotsa noir coming up. First location to check out: the crime scene, 8493 Fountain Avenue. Might be interesting to dog his footsteps, as it were ...

Cheers,

Earl
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  #23913  
Old Posted Oct 2, 2014, 1:52 PM
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Originally Posted by oldstuff View Post

Another note: from the 1920's through to about 1953 there were airports in the area, which are no longer there. Most notably Vail Field, which was located just southwest of the area of the beacon. There are maps on the site "Abandoned Airfields" which show its location as well as that of Montebello Airport, later East Los Angeles Airport, which was founded in the early 40's and lasted only into the early 50's. Some old maps show as many as three other airfields in the area. If someone who can post pictures would check the site and post the maps it would be clear where they were located. Vail in particular, was used apparently as a training field during the war.

When looking at a current map of the area, we see Vail Avenue and also interestingly "Mines Avenue" also in the area, Mines being the original name of LAX
The Abandoned & Little-Known Airfields site is a great resource. I've used it many times before while looking for filming locations. The section on Vail Field can be found here (scroll down for Montebello Airport/East Los Angeles Airport). The site has plenty of pictures of both airfields, including more detailed aerial shots. What I've aimed to do is give an overview of their location. Vail Field is the dark, triangular shape in the top half of this 1948 aerial view. East Los Angeles Airport is just right of center in the lower half.


Historic Aerials

This is the same area in 2004. Other than Vail Avenue (mentioned by oldstuff), I don't think there are any reminders of the various local airfields. I've included the triangle of Vail Field for reference.


Historic Aerials

I originally posted the picture below back in March (see here for full post). It shows the Samson Tire and Rubber Company (now the Citadel Outlets) circa 1930. Vail Field is just out of shot, but would've been on the east side of the field near the top on the right side. I think this picture gives a good idea of how unpopulated the area was when the airfields were built.


USC Digital Library

The map below shows where four of the former airfields were located, and their position with respect to the Standard Oil Beacon discussed recently.


Google Maps

The fancy street layout directly north of Vail Field was included in post #20383 by e_r.
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  #23914  
Old Posted Oct 2, 2014, 2:28 PM
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Excellent job HossC! I especially like the job you did with the overlay.

While I was researching items for my Midwick View Estates post I came across the Samson Tire & Rubber Company listed under "Midwick View Estate neighbors". There were several other factories listed as well. (I'll post them later)

I know we've seen the Samson tire factory numerous times on NLA, but it's quite possible we missed these very early photos.

under construction

usc


It's hard to believe the grassy area is now the Santa Ana Freeway.

usc

To see the Samson Tire & Rubber Company as it evolved go here:
http://forum.skyscraperpage.com/show...postcount=6291
__


Lorendoc, thanks for identifying 5th Street in the night photo I posted last night. I'm pretty impressed that you figured out that it was taken from atop the Baltimore Hotel.


http://forum.skyscraperpage.com/show...postcount=6683

hmmmm...there's a flag where my air balloon-orb should be.

The night photograph I posted was 1911 and the hotel was built in 1910. -so maybe the flag poles hadn't been installed yet.

Last edited by ethereal_reality; Oct 2, 2014 at 3:23 PM.
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  #23915  
Old Posted Oct 2, 2014, 3:14 PM
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Interesting construction pictures, e_r.


---------------


Quote:
Originally Posted by ethereal_reality View Post

Here's another noirish look at downtown Los Angeles from 25 years earlier!!

1911

http://memoriastoica.tumblr.com/post/61564043603
Quote:
Originally Posted by Lorendoc View Post

Thanks for that night picture, e_r. It is a lot more "primitive" looking somehow, what a difference 25 years make.

The view is from three blocks east of Broadway, looking east down E 5th Street. The building on the left is the "Victor Ponet Building" (early capitalist, Belgian consul, real estate developer).

The clues are the Somerset House (214 E 5th) and the bright sign "5 cents G[lobe] T[heater] which was at 202 E 5th. I think the picture was taken from the six-story Hotel Baltimore, which was and is at the SW corner of 5th and Los Angeles Sts.
I think this 1910 Baist map shows most of the buldings named by Lorendoc. The light-colored wall just past the Victor Ponet Building in e_r's picture belong's to the extant (although sadly boarded up) Engine 23 Truck Company.


www.historicmapworks.com

By 1921, Somerset House and the Globe Theatre have gone. The latter was replaced by the Union Stage Depot, which also extended down Los Angeles Street.


www.historicmapworks.com

The image below was posted by e_r way back in post #584. It shows the Union Stage Depot in 1932.


USC Digital Library

The entrance of the Union Stage Depot can be seen in the background on the right of this circa 1937 picture. The description says:

"This view looking west on 5th Street towards Los Angeles Street covers the south side of the 200 block. The Biltmore Hotel (160 East Fifth Street) is visible at the end of the image, which starts at the Vasa Cafe at 216 East Fifth Street. Pedestrians fill the wide sidewalks, and a patron sitting on a counter stool at Vasa turns to look outside."


LAPL
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  #23916  
Old Posted Oct 2, 2014, 4:34 PM
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The street is looking a little sketchy in that last photograph.
__



The Willard Storage Battery Company was another one of the factories listed under 'Midwick View Estates neighbors'.


usc


"Architect Claud Beelman designed the 1929 Willard Storage Battery Company of California located at 5700 East 9th Street in what is now Commerce. This building housed the western states manufacturing and distribution of the Cleveland based company. This portion of 9th was renamed Olympic and this building is gone."
http://beta.worldcat.org/archivegrid...data/801850850



There is a photograph of the Willard Storage Battery Company in this ad dated 1930.


ebay




Here's a close-up of the water tower from the first photograph.


detail




I was thrilled when I found this 1929 photograph showing the view from atop the Willard water tower.


http://digitallibrary.usc.edu/cdm/re...coll65/id/3747




In the distance is a massive billboard advertising Montebello Park. It shows a giant arrow hitting a bulls-eye.


detail




-here it is a little closer. -pretty cool isn't it?

detail

So is the building with the billboard on 9th street or some side street (it's hard to tell without knowing the direction of the photograph)
I'd like to know if the building's still there....it's a pretty nice looking.

__

Last edited by ethereal_reality; Oct 2, 2014 at 6:14 PM.
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  #23917  
Old Posted Oct 2, 2014, 6:08 PM
Martin Pal Martin Pal is offline
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I found this interesting publicity photo of Anita Ekberg
in front of the WIlshire Brown Derby.


http://neptsdepths.blogspot.com/2014...ampground.html


Is it a backdrop or is she really there?
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  #23918  
Old Posted Oct 2, 2014, 6:22 PM
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Here's another parade photograph I found earlier this week on ebay.

"Parade on 2nd Street, 1908"


ebay

I especially like the building on the left where the people are on a balcony above the entrance.
__
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  #23919  
Old Posted Oct 2, 2014, 6:26 PM
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"Traffic on Main Street at the Plaza, 1924."


ebay
__

I believe Anita is in front of a backdrop Martin_Pal. It's really odd they put a derby on the serving tray.
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  #23920  
Old Posted Oct 2, 2014, 6:43 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ethereal_reality View Post

The Willard Storage Battery Company was another one of the factories listed under 'Midwick View Estates neighbors'.


usc
The factory was bigger than it looks in the picture above. Here it is in 1953. The water tower is nearly at the bottom of this aerial. It appears that the Beelman structure was still standing in 1980 (Historic Aerials), but gone by 1994 (Google Earth).


Historic Aerials

Quote:
Originally Posted by ethereal_reality View Post

In the distance is a massive billboard advertising Montebello Park. It shows a giant arrow hitting a bulls-eye - pretty cool isn't it?


detail

So is the building with the billboard on 9th street or some side street (it's hard to tell without knowing the direction of the photograph)
I'd like to know if the building's still there....it's a pretty nice looking.
I believe this is the building with the billboard. Ace Liquor is at 6015 E Olympic Boulevard. Various property websites give a build date of 1926, which fits with view from the water tower.


GSV
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