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oldstuff Oct 1, 2014 2:41 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by ProphetM (Post 6750552)
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.

https://lh5.googleusercontent.com/-O...ichfieldAD.jpg
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

ethereal_reality Oct 1, 2014 10:24 PM

We've seen many accidents on NLA, but this one doesn't ring a bell. (for me anyway)

March 10, 1946
http://imagizer.imageshack.us/v2/102...537/116bU9.jpg
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."

__

ethereal_reality Oct 1, 2014 10:35 PM

Quote:

http://i.imgur.com/VEnTV3q.jpg

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://imagizer.imageshack.us/v2/102...912/UVmDzV.jpg
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.
http://imagizer.imageshack.us/v2/102...540/GwZMdg.jpg
detail

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

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HossC Oct 1, 2014 10:53 PM

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."

http://i809.photobucket.com/albums/z...r.jpg~original
UCLA Library Digital Collections

ethereal_reality Oct 1, 2014 10:56 PM

:previous: Aw, soooo cute! -and the baby isn't bad either. ;)

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CityBoyDoug Oct 1, 2014 11:10 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by ethereal_reality (Post 6751578)
We've seen many accidents on NLA, but this one doesn't ring a bell. (for me anyway)

March 10, 1946
http://imagizer.imageshack.us/v2/102...537/116bU9.jpg
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.

CityBoyDoug Oct 1, 2014 11:17 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by ethereal_reality (Post 6750061)
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.

http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v4...ps4ee9360e.jpg 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.........


ethereal_reality Oct 1, 2014 11:36 PM

For some reason, I really like this amateur snapshot.

-smiling waving girls on an unidentified street in Hollywood, 1942.
http://imagizer.imageshack.us/v2/102...661/ZwLMmD.jpg
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.

__

Mstimc Oct 2, 2014 1:51 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by ethereal_reality (Post 6751635)
:previous: Aw, soooo cute! -and the baby isn't bad either. ;)

__

She could be packing some serious heat in that beehive hairdo!:haha:

Lorendoc Oct 2, 2014 2:27 AM

thank you to...
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by Graybeard (Post 6750582)

...Graybeard for the image processing, I like being able to see more details.

Lorendoc Oct 2, 2014 3:33 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by ethereal_reality (Post 6751604)
Here's another Broadway view from 25 years earlier!

1911
http://imagizer.imageshack.us/v2/102...912/UVmDzV.jpg
http://memoriastoica.tumblr.com/post/61564043603

alas, it's a LARGE orb crowning a turret on an unidentified building.
http://imagizer.imageshack.us/v2/102...540/GwZMdg.jpg
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:

http://i.imgur.com/C9WODJa.jpg
GSV

Earl Boebert Oct 2, 2014 1:40 PM

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

HossC Oct 2, 2014 1:52 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by oldstuff (Post 6750790)

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.

http://i809.photobucket.com/albums/z...rfield1948.jpg
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.

http://i809.photobucket.com/albums/z...rfield2004.jpg
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.

http://i809.photobucket.com/albums/z...1.jpg~original
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.

http://i809.photobucket.com/albums/z...ieldGoogle.jpg
Google Maps

The fancy street layout directly north of Vail Field was included in post #20383 by e_r.

ethereal_reality Oct 2, 2014 2:28 PM

:previous: 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
http://imagizer.imageshack.us/v2/102...538/1lXROd.jpg
usc


It's hard to believe the grassy area is now the Santa Ana Freeway.
http://imagizer.imageshack.us/v2/xq90/540/RdV2FW.jpg
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://imagizer.imageshack.us/v2/xq90/538/65T2l8.jpg
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.

HossC Oct 2, 2014 3:14 PM

:previous:

Interesting construction pictures, e_r.


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


Quote:

Originally Posted by ethereal_reality (Post 6751604)

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

1911
http://imagizer.imageshack.us/v2/102...912/UVmDzV.jpg
http://memoriastoica.tumblr.com/post/61564043603

Quote:

Originally Posted by Lorendoc (Post 6752029)

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.

http://i809.photobucket.com/albums/z...h1910Baist.jpg
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.

http://i809.photobucket.com/albums/z...h1921Baist.jpg
www.historicmapworks.com

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

http://img410.imageshack.us/img410/5...agedepot5t.jpg
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."

http://i809.photobucket.com/albums/z...afeEast5th.jpg
LAPL

ethereal_reality Oct 2, 2014 4:34 PM

:previous: 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'.

http://imagizer.imageshack.us/v2/102...538/Ecx90D.jpg
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.

http://imagizer.imageshack.us/v2/xq90/538/pTQn8f.jpg
ebay




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

http://imagizer.imageshack.us/v2/xq90/538/wEPU5X.jpg
detail




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

http://imagizer.imageshack.us/v2/xq90/661/XM4vtR.jpg
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.

http://imagizer.imageshack.us/v2/xq90/673/vBqwWG.jpg
detail




-here it is a little closer. -pretty cool isn't it?
http://imagizer.imageshack.us/v2/xq90/673/DW9zBj.jpg
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.

__

Martin Pal Oct 2, 2014 6:08 PM

I found this interesting publicity photo of Anita Ekberg
in front of the WIlshire Brown Derby.

http://3.bp.blogspot.com/-OE8AlZpFLn...00/Camp00b.JPG
http://neptsdepths.blogspot.com/2014...ampground.html


Is it a backdrop or is she really there?

ethereal_reality Oct 2, 2014 6:22 PM

Here's another parade photograph I found earlier this week on ebay.

"Parade on 2nd Street, 1908"

http://imagizer.imageshack.us/v2/xq90/909/dr0NNL.jpg
ebay

I especially like the building on the left where the people are on a balcony above the entrance.
__

ethereal_reality Oct 2, 2014 6:26 PM

"Traffic on Main Street at the Plaza, 1924."

http://imagizer.imageshack.us/v2/xq90/746/F19sdc.jpg
ebay
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I believe Anita is in front of a backdrop Martin_Pal. It's really odd they put a derby on the serving tray.

HossC Oct 2, 2014 6:43 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by ethereal_reality (Post 6752635)

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

http://imagizer.imageshack.us/v2/102...538/Ecx90D.jpg
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).

http://i809.photobucket.com/albums/z...torage1953.jpg
Historic Aerials

Quote:

Originally Posted by ethereal_reality (Post 6752635)

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

http://imagizer.imageshack.us/v2/xq90/673/DW9zBj.jpg
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.

http://i809.photobucket.com/albums/z...AceLiquors.jpg
GSV


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