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ethereal_reality Dec 4, 2011 3:23 AM

:previous: Thank you for figuring all that out G_W.
I thought something was 'off' with the 1986 photo. The streets seemed wrong, but for the life of me I couldn't figure it out.
I googled the Church of Religious Science and it gave me the same address as the 'Florentine' building so I decided to go ahead and post it.

I agree with you, the 'new' building seemed more mid-century modern than anything built after 1986 (the date of the first photo).

You mentioned the address on the steps in the 1986 photo. I am absolutely amazed you could make out '32'.
Several times throughout this thread people have pointed out numbers and letters that are virtually impossible for me to make out.
What gives!?! Do I need to invest in a larger I need to have my eyes checked?? I feel like I'm missing out. :(


ethereal_reality Dec 4, 2011 5:11 AM

I'm drawn to the old apartment buildings in Los Angeles....especially the ones with old signs still on their roofs.

In this case, it's the Superba Apartments at 335 S. Berendo Avenue.

above: Notice all the television first I thought they were editor markings.
Much to my surprise the photograph is dated 1962 (I would have guessed much earlier).

below: The Superba Apartments at 335 S. Berendo Avenue as it appears today.
google street view

You can glimpse the old Superba sign in each of these contemporary photographs.
google street view

GaylordWilshire Dec 4, 2011 1:40 PM

GaylordWilshire Dec 4, 2011 2:41 PM Leased

Per Steve Vaught at Paradise Leased, the original caption reads "A Study in Diagonals - A novel and almost cubistic study of the west portal of the Third Street tunnel by Will Connell."

At first I thought it was a gouache, but it seems that Will Connell was a photographer.

A commenter on the site on which I found this thought it might be a recent shot, perhaps a gag, what with the clarity of the image and the cheeky "Swell Photographer" slogan. There was, at any rate, a Will Connell, photographer, at 3008 W. 7th:

Union Station by Connell: Rails/UCR-CMP

And this curiosity:
Clicking on the credit reveals something tantalizing, though unfortunately
non-functional, at least on my computer. (I couldn't find a "California
Bourbon Co." in city directories.) Street View
Will Connell's studio at 3008 W 7th today... can't help but want to see a
resemblance, in window details, at least, of the "California Bourbon Co."
facade to it...where there's still a liquor store.

Bio of Will Connell:

srk1941 Dec 5, 2011 5:27 PM

As much as I'd love to take credit for the exceptionally wonderful Paradise Leased blog, that is the good work of Steve Vaught.

But since I'm here, I have a question...

I'm writing a biography of a landscape architect who practiced in Southern California from the middle 1920's through his death in 1953 - Fred Barlow, Jr.

For the majority of that time he worked out of an office on the seventh floor of the Architect's Building, which has been discussed here before:

I'm wondering if anyone has seen floor plans or any other interior photographs or drawings of the building? I've only seen photos of the outside.

Fab Fifties Fan Dec 5, 2011 5:47 PM

While playing around with Google Streetview, I went to see if "Will & Grace" Connell's home on N. Berendo was still around. It's not, having been replaced by a rubber stamp apartment building, but I did come across a beautiful apartment building at Beverly Blvd and N. Berendo.

I scanned the net to see if I could find any history on the Dicksboro Apartments and found this great Dick Whittington photo from 1929.
USC Digital Library/Dick Whittington Collection

3918 Beverly Blvd. today
Google Streetview

~Jon Paul

GaylordWilshire Dec 5, 2011 5:54 PM
Baldwin Hills Village and the Village Green

srk1941: My apologies--I do know that you are the author of the exceptional Baldwin Hills Village and the Village Green....

GaylordWilshire Dec 5, 2011 6:24 PM

Early Bunker Hill destruction

I searched the thread for whatever we might have seen here of the Belmont Hotel fire atop Bunker Hill, but I couldn't find anything...

The story:

Muji Dec 5, 2011 9:23 PM


Originally Posted by ethereal_reality (Post 5503561)
The Headquarters of the Church of Religious Science at 3281 W. 6th Street in 1986.
William Reagh

I was excited to see what this beautiful building looks like today......
but it appears that the 'religious scientists' tore it down and left us with this.
google street view.

What a wonderful find! I live right around the corner of where that building used to be. The modernist church building has actually been around for a lot longer. It looks like the original classical revival structure was replaced by the 4-story Holmes Center office building just to the right of the street view photograph.

ethereal_reality Dec 6, 2011 1:11 AM

:previous: Thank you Muji for clarifying the location of the earlier structure. It's fun to solve little mysteries.

rick m Dec 6, 2011 2:08 AM


Originally Posted by GaylordWilshire (Post 5505184)

The Belmont was to the west on what became the Crown Hill neighborhood-1/3rd of a mile from Bunker Hill - I think it occurred in the earliest days of the L A times- 1881 or so-- perhaps a bit more on USC site---

FredH Dec 6, 2011 2:08 AM

Sign Experiment
Los Angeles Times

Story is here:


ethereal_reality Dec 6, 2011 2:11 AM

In a city where so much has changed time and time's pretty amazing to come across a structure
that virtually looks the same as it did back in 1929.
...and of all things it's a garage entrance!

below: The I.N.Van Nuys Building garage entrance in 1929.

below: The I.N.Van Nuys Building garage entrance today, courtesy of 'KingoftheHill'.
The entrance/exit to the garage look so small...especially for modern automobiles.
Lose the red awnings and you're back in 1929.


FredH Dec 6, 2011 2:15 AM

1910 Bombing of the Los Angeles Times Building
This is a real nice set of pictures and stories of the bombing
Los Angeles Times

Pictures and stories are here:

(keep clicking through the ads)

GaylordWilshire Dec 6, 2011 2:15 AM

MAJOR CORRECTION...PLEASE IGNORE MY FANCY STARRED MAP BELOW. I'm not sure now how I arrived at my erroneous placement of the 1935 Religious Science headquarters building (the "Loggia dei Lanzi"), but after seeing this post on the excellent Urban Diachrony, I did some more checking--as the always-scrupulous "UD" blogger cites in his sources, the Times in both 1935 and 1988 refer to the location as the northwest corner of Sixth and New Hampshire, not Vermont. Not sure why I had justified in my mind the church properties being separated as I did. Mea culpa.


Originally Posted by Muji (Post 5505460)
It looks like the original classical revival structure was replaced by the 4-story Holmes Center office building just to the right of the street view photograph.

Well, I hate to be picayunish, but the United Church of Religious Science headquarters building--the Loggia dei Lanzi knockoff--was on the northwest corner of 6th and Vermont (3223 W 6th); the Founder's Church of Religious Science, flagship congregation of United--the round Paul Williams design--is on the northeast corner of 6th and Berendo (3281 W 6th), almost two blocks west.... This story sort of explains it: Before Founder's built at Berendo, it held services at the Wiltern.

ethereal_reality Dec 6, 2011 2:23 AM

The garage belonged to this impressive building....the I.N.Van Nuys Building at Seventh and Spring.

below: The I.N.Van Nuys Building with rooftop sign.

below: Rear view of the I.N.Van Nuys Building at left.

below: A slightly different view. Anyone have any information on the Hotel Jovita?

ethereal_reality Dec 6, 2011 2:45 AM

While searching for additional information on the I.N.Van Nuys Building.....I discovered there was also a Van Nuys Hotel at 4th & Main Street.
Pictured here in 1905.

GaylordWilshire Dec 6, 2011 2:45 AM
The Lawlor Professional School, 5751 Hollywood Blvd.
Story here:
(Anyone know what the arroyo stone columns are for?
Presumably for some sort of gate at Hollywood and Taft
for a real estate development?)

Later Lawlor became actor Reginald Denny's hobby shop:
That story here: (One guess
as to what's on the corner now. Hint: It's not a gas station or a parking lot.) Rod Hotline

ethereal_reality Dec 6, 2011 3:04 AM

The twin KRKD radio towers in the 1930s.

below: The twin KRKD towers from the opposite direction. (previously posted at the beginning the thread)

3940dxer Dec 6, 2011 3:18 AM

I wrote:...General question: can anyone tell me how, outside of the web, I might find old info, plans, building permits, business name records, and such? My brother suggested Building & Safety. Should I try the Central Library? Other resources? I would like to find more info on the 1518/1520 Cahuenga building, and some other Hollywood addresses.

Another question: Does any have info or an old photo of 524 S. Main St? It's now a fun little place called Nickel Diner, but was also a diner in the old days, maybe a Woolworths cafeteria or coffee shop? I have been unable to find old any photos of it...

rick m replied:Well you must get yourself up to the City Archives on the upperdeck at the large City Services Bldng on Vignes (its behind the MTA headqrtrs) Call them up first to go over your interests so they can pull whatever materials needed. Also- the next time you visit the Nickel Diner - take a gander at the recently hung early-forties street view I found for Monica and Kirsten- It shows that a Woolworths Five and Dime was there during that period. It surprised the hell out of them - comes from a not yet catalogued collection

Rick, many thanks for the suggestion. I had not heard of that agency but will definitely give that a try!

Re Nickel Diner, I was chatting with Kirsten a few weeks ago and she told me about the Woolworth's connection. This surprised me because I had not seen any previous reference on this thread to a Woolworth's at that address, and web searches came up negative. But the other day I saw that on (roughly) page 190 of this thread, someone posted a detailed downtown map that included business names and though some were barely readable, 524 S. Main did seem to be labeled Woolworth's. Funny, as it's such a small space.

She must have told you that the old menu mural on the wall (below, photo by me) is original. Not sure if this had anything to do with Woolworth's, probably it came later.
Anyway, thanks again for your suggestion, I appreciate it!

3940dxer Dec 6, 2011 4:31 AM


Originally Posted by Fab Fifties Fan (Post 5333682)
Its kind of like Alice in Wonderland builds her dream home

"The Enchanted Castle" a private residence at 4857 Melrose in 1935

and today a Thai restaurant. Supposedly it is in there somewhere.

Photo one courtesy

I'm up to page 224 now, and still enjoying the hell out of this thread! Last night I was really pleased to find posts about two buildings that I had been hoping to see here. This is the first one.

In the 1990's I saw this unusual building many times while driving down Melrose and could see that it was a small Asian night club.The trees outside were covered in fairy lights and situated atop a small hill, I figured it would have a nice view of the city. So one night I drove over there and worked up my courage to ascend the stairway and step inside.

Well, as the only non-Korean on the premises I created a minor stir (or should I say "panic") but the hostess reluctantly seated me and took my drink order. The place was smoky inside, very atmospheric, and, facing south, indeed had nice views of downtown and mid Wilshire. There were little outside tables and a running fountain. After I finished my drink the server nervously said something to the effect that my table was reserved for someone else, and it might be best if I did my drinking elsewhere, so I moved on. Oh well - at least I got to see the place!

I had always wondered what the story was behind that curious building and had been hoping I'd see it on this thread. And of course, I drove over there today -- but the news is not good. The place is still there but it's boarded up, in bad shape, and the foliage is so overgrown that you can barely see it from the street. The gate was open so I wandered inside and took a few photos. There's a fairly big parking lot east of the building (the green awning must have been there to shelter customers and the valet from rain and cold weather). The main house is almost completely covered by ivy and overgrown plants. One interesting artifact that I hadn't noticed that night is a concrete plaque, installed near one of the fountains. It's badly worn (and some meathead worker apparently splashed concrete on it, covering up some words). It reads:

(illegible characters)
(illegible characters)

After getting home I searched and learned a little more about the place. According to an article in the New York Times, Milton Hopkins built the "whimsical Castle" in 1948 as a gift to his wife. He used materials that came from buildings destroyed to make way for the Hollywood Freeway, then under construction. (I suppose that, being sheriff, the construction boys delivered them with a smile.) When his creation was finished, in 1957, the Hopkins's medieval-style home, topped off by battlements, had a front-yard kingdom that included a pump-driven stream, 15 waterfalls, a steel suspension bridge wide enough to walk over, and a wishing well.

I read elsewhere that in the mid 60's someone named Michael Boosin rented the place. He was an acquaintance of Andy Warhol, had money, and it sounds like he hosted some pretty wild parties there. It later became a Thai restaurant called The Siamese Castle, then a French place called La Bastille, and finally the Ko Kung Club, the Korean place that briefly let me in. A Korean sign can still be seen outside.

I hope the property survives, but it will need a lot of work! The location is interesting. The Castle is at the crest of a small hill that Melrose passes over, between Kingsley and Western. That particular area of Melrose is pretty seedy now -- there are 2 pot dispensaries across from the Castle -- but just north is a very nice old residential area now called the Melrose Hill Historic District, that I'd never heard of before (last 2 photos). The beautiful old house is at 4920 Marathon Street, it almost looks down on the Castle.

GaylordWilshire Dec 6, 2011 12:04 PM

3940: Phenomenal, fearless sleuthing! Thank you.

PHX31 Dec 6, 2011 3:39 PM

3940dxer: Great story, information, and pictures!

3940dxer Dec 6, 2011 5:57 PM


Originally Posted by GaylordWilshire (Post 5506266)
3940: Phenomenal, fearless sleuthing! Thank you.

Thought you'd like it. :cool:

I've had several topics in mind but am being cautious about posting until I get through the whole thread. I can see that repetition has been an issue here, though it's often hard to avoid.

Here's a photo of the main residence, probably from the 60's or 70's.

Michael Saint /

Fab Fifties Fan Dec 6, 2011 6:17 PM


Originally Posted by 3940dxer (Post 5506599)
Thought you'd like it. :cool: I've had several topics in mind but am being cautious about posting until I get through the whole thread. I can see that repetition has been an issue here, though it's often hard to avoid.

Here's a photo of the main residence, probably from the 60's or 70's.

Michael Saint /

3940, Thank you for sharing your rersearch on the castle!!! I was completely fascinated by it when I found that first photo. I have vague recollections of seeing it when I lived there in the mid-70's. We used to haunt serveral second hand stores, that were on that part of Melrose, and I think the castle was still a private residence but kind of run down. Regardless, it was great folk art.

I am also enamored with the picture you posted of the house on Marathon. I seem to remember seeing other beautiful houses on Marathon in an earlier post on the thread. If I recall correctly, it was a post about Three Stooges filming locations. I'll go looking for it.

Found it and my mind like a steel trap (a very rusty steel trap) strikes again. It was WC Fields not the stooges and it is Marathon Street in Silverlake, so nevemind:D

Thanks again:cheers:

~Jon Paul

FredH Dec 6, 2011 6:18 PM

O'Connor Electro-Plating Explosion
926 E. Pico
Los Angeles Times

Story and more pictures are here:

GaylordWilshire Dec 6, 2011 8:37 PM

157 North La Cienega, Beverly Hills

"A Saloon Created For The Carriage Trade. Professors of the Piano. Beauteous Genteel Feminine Cupbearers. Gleaming Fire Pole. Amazing Hanging Oil Paintings. Luxurious, Salubrious, Pulchritudinous. Home of the Biggest Drink in the West." The Gay 90s was apparently created by Paul Cummins of Huddle Restaurant fame and famous for 5¢ sandwiches. Street View

3940dxer Dec 6, 2011 11:12 PM

OK, how's this for a then and now...

Tiburcio Vasquez was a notorious Mexican bandit who in the mid 1800's had many adventures, robberies, arrests, and escapes all over California. After being caught for caught rustling horses in 1856, he was jailed at San Quentin. After his release he returned to crime in Sonoma County, was arrested yet again in Petaluma, and spent 3 more years in prison.

In 1870 he organized a new bandit gang, was arrested, and then escaped. When California offered a $15,000 reward for his capture he eluded posses and worked his way south towards Los Angeles. He wound up at the house of "Greek George", located just south of the present corner of Kings Road and Santa Monica Blvd. in West Hollywood. On May 14, 1874, he was captured at the house by 6 armed men and taken to City Hall on Spring Street. He was convicted at trial in San Jose and was executed on March 19, 1875 at age 39. Vásquez was asked just before his execution, "Do you believe in an afterlife?" He replied, "I hope so... for then soon I shall see all my old sweethearts again". The only word he spoke on the gallows was "pronto" (quickly).

(In the late 1970's I lived in a penthouse at 1200 N. Flores St., just one short block from where Vasquez was captured. I knew there was plenty of interesting L.A. history just beyond my door -- more on this later -- but never had a clue that a notorious bandit had been caught a hundred years prior, right around the corner!)

The Vasquez hideout (Greek George's house) in West Hollywood is from Remi Nadeau's City-Makers. "Now" is a Google Street View.

copcar555 Dec 6, 2011 11:26 PM

I was under the impression that Angels Flight had been rebuilt...I guess not.

ethereal_reality Dec 6, 2011 11:30 PM

previously posted by Gaylord_Wilshire

:previous: Interesting that the saloon building is still there.

That area of La Cienega was also a popular tourist attraction back in the 1960s and 1970s when it was at the height of it's fame as 'Restaurant Row'.

below: You can see the Gay 90s Restaurant in this postcard. The famous Tail O the Cock is on the left in red neon.
postcard ebay

I was first enamoured by 'Restaurant Row' from an episode of the Beverly Hillbillies I saw when I was a kid. They showed the area and it's themed restaurants as a possible location for Granny and Ellie Mae's 'Topless' restaurant (Jethro's idea). They thought topless meant they didn't wear hats (this wasn't high comedy).

*OK....just to make sure I wasn't imagining this I googled around and amazingly came across this video clip.

Clip of 'Restaurant Row' back in the day. The episode aired in 1968.


copcar555 Dec 6, 2011 11:48 PM

The car with the thick glass is a newer one than the one in the attack. The one in the attack is a '48 or '49 and the one with the armor is at least a '50...

ethereal_reality Dec 6, 2011 11:52 PM

One of my favorite restaurants on Restaurant Row was the Fish Shanty....the one you entered by walking through a whale's mouth.
postcard ebay
Alison Martino

.....The whale entrance in the 1980s.


GaylordWilshire Dec 7, 2011 12:50 AM

The Milligan Yucca Jacket?

GaylordWilshire Dec 7, 2011 12:51 AM

The Milligan Yucca Jacket?

3940dxer Dec 7, 2011 2:18 AM

On restaurant row, don't forget...

And ABSOLUTELY, don't forget Fatburger!

Long gone, but boy, how many times did I limp over the that round Fatburger hut at La Cienega and San Vicente for a king cheese with bacon and chili after a night of too much drinking. It could be quite a scene on Friday or Saturday night, after the bars closed.

Funny thing but most of those big places on restaurant row weren't really that good -- most were overblown tourist joints, riding on undeserved or extinct reputations...sort of like all those surf & turf places in Marina Del Rey, that never see a local customer. But it was fun to drive down La Cienega and look at all the signs. :yes:

Illithid Dude Dec 7, 2011 4:14 AM


Originally Posted by copcar555 (Post 5507161)
I was under the impression that Angels Flight had been rebuilt...I guess not.

It was.

GaylordWilshire Dec 7, 2011 10:42 AM

Speaking of Fatburger... Guy Guy Guy Street View

The only vaguely noirish thing--and I admit that it's a stretch--about The Burger That Ate L.A. once at the se corner of Melrose and Stanley was its replication of City Hall. I'm not sure what happened to it--the City Hall part--when it became a chicken place, but Starbucks seems for some reason to have felt the need to restore the shape (if it wasn't eventually to become a parking lot, a gas station, a minimart, a strip mall, it would have to have become a Starbucks, right?).

Per a commenter on the photographer's website: "The restaurant is in the shape of a huge 2-story burger. Bar stools are shaped like pickle wedges and suspended above your head is an enormous tomato slice suspended from the top bun! The counter where you eat is between the two buns which act as the floor and the ceiling."

ethereal_reality Dec 7, 2011 8:17 PM's another example by Terry Guy of a building morphing into a Starbucks.

The Showboat Restaurant in Caheunga Pass, May 1986.

below: As a of 86 in the city.

GaylordWilshire Dec 7, 2011 8:37 PM


It's a disease. I avoid the seemingly thousands of Starbucks in Manhattan--there are so many great local coffee shops (i.e., Mojo on Charles Street)--but I'll admit that they are sort of beacons when traveling. As for the old Showboat--I didn't realize that it had been destroyed.

GaylordWilshire Dec 8, 2011 1:40 AM

The Rosslyn and the New Million Dollar Rosslyn Street View

Vintage postcard drawings often exaggerate, and these of the Rosslyn are no exception. Usually I shy away from postcards here; I posted these because I think the colors are great. But my real quarry for this post was a pic of the connecting marble subway--no luck. Dinner on me at any of the Restaurant Row joints we've seen to first person who can produce a shot--3940? You seem brave, having visited the Castle of Enchantment--perhaps you can find your way into the subway. Is the passage even still open? The "Auto Drive-In Lobby" is also intriguing....
An interesting drawing of the Rosslyns

Those Who Squirm! Dec 8, 2011 6:25 AM

Egad. Not to mention gadzooks and zounds!! Do I or do I not spy a Bell system sign for a public telephone, over on the left?


Originally Posted by ethereal_reality (Post 5100152)
Below: Looking north at Spring St. & Main, 1906.
This photo is a bit me it looks much earlier than 1906.
Also, I hope to god that girl is not choking a puppy.
usc digital archive

GaylordWilshire Dec 8, 2011 1:25 PM

Squirm... I think what you might be seeing on that round sign is the Anheuser "A" also seen on the building... and on the bridle and harness parts of the horses hauling suds in the picture above. Sad to say that Bob Yeakel's Wilshire Oldsmobile has been replaced by the blank side wall of a Ralphs.

ethereal_reality Dec 8, 2011 7:48 PM

A marble subway (i.e. tunnel) between the two Rosslyn Hotel buildings?
VERY intriguing!

ethereal_reality Dec 8, 2011 7:59 PM

I just found this slight reference to the mystery tunnel.

Fab Fifties Fan Dec 8, 2011 8:08 PM

I found these two photos of early Hollywood residences on e-Bay. I am curious as to whether I can garner some more information on them from my fellow sleuths on this thread.

I would estimate that these were taken in the 20's or maybe very early thirties.

Can anyone read the signs? I don't have that good of a monitor or eyesight.
I really love these bungalows and hope they still exist!

Can anyone pinpoint this area?
e-Bay images

~Jon Paul

ethereal_reality Dec 9, 2011 1:51 AM


Originally Posted by Fab Fifties Fan (Post 5509528)

Jon Paul, at first I thought this might be the Grauman Bungalow Court Apartments on Melrose Avenue between Alexandria and Kenmore.

.....small differences and the sidewalks don't match :(

ethereal_reality Dec 9, 2011 1:54 AM

Many people are unaware that Sid Grauman built this bungalow court in 1922.

Here is another photograph.

Further information from LAPL

I need to research those 7 shops at the corner of Melrose and Kenmore. I had no idea they even existed.


ethereal_reality Dec 9, 2011 2:07 AM

...back to Restaurant Row for a bit.

Does anyone remember this mid-century building on La Cienega just south of 3rd Street.

below: It was used in 1978 for the disco movie 'Thank God It's Friday'. Notice the iconic slanted pillars.
columbia pictures

below: Today, the site is a Loehmann's Store. The Beverly Center can be seen in the right background.
google street view

GaylordWilshire Dec 9, 2011 2:34 AM


and I love the juxtaposition of the bug-eyed Sprite and the '61 Coupe de Ville...

ethereal_reality Dec 9, 2011 2:46 AM

At one time, the restaurant next to the 'Gay 90s' was the 'Roaring 20s'.

below: Interior of 'The Roaring 20s'. Shown is singer Sheri Steiger fronting a dixieland band.

above: Cutie Chuties!?! Who wrote this stuff?

A shooting gallery would mean something entirely different today. Kinda sad


Before becoming 'The Roaring 20s', the restaurant was briefly 'The Sports Page', a short lived restaurant/nightclub for sports writers and professional athletes. The photograph below is from 1959.


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