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sopas ej Jul 21, 2009 3:30 AM


Also, in the above photo, notice the top of the streetlamps; during WWII in Los Angeles, the tops of streetlamps were blacked out to dim the lights from above, because of the fear that the Japanese were going to attack the west coast of the US at night (as if they still wouldn't be able to see the lit streetlights anyway). And if you watch the film noir "Double Indemnity," which was released in 1944, you'll see in the night scenes outside that the streetlamps were blacked out on top.

ethereal_reality Jul 21, 2009 11:22 PM

That's a pretty cool piece of WWII trivia sopas_ej.
It's something I would have NEVER noticed in that photograph.

I have a photo somewhere of the night Los Angeles was 'attacked'.
Do you have any information concerning that incident?

I'll try and find the photo (it's basically just a bunch of searchlights).

ethereal_reality Jul 21, 2009 11:56 PM

I found the photo. It's dated February 25, 1942.
(This event occurred three months after the attacks at Pearl Harbor)

above: Mystery objects (U.F.O.s) over L.A. triggered a massive anti-aircraft artillery barrage.

For more details google 'Battle of Los Angeles'.

dktshb Jul 23, 2009 12:29 AM

I love the photos but always get so disappointed when looking at them. We demolished so much of Los Angeles' early identity.

ethereal_reality Jul 23, 2009 8:46 PM

^^^ I feel your pain buddy but keep in mind it isn't just L.A.
Many U.S. cities have destroyed a significant portion of their past.
It's a sad fact, but hopefully we have learned from our mistakes.

ethereal_reality Jul 23, 2009 11:56 PM

Ok, I found an example that isn't depressing dktshb.
This great example of art deco still stands at Wilshire Blvd. and Western Ave.

Originally known as the Pellissier Building, it is home to Wiltern Theater.
USC archive
USC archive
USC archive
Modern view. photographer unknown.
Julie Wilson's World

above: The blue-green Pellissier Building can be seen in the distance on the right in this 1954 photograph.

ethereal_reality Jul 26, 2009 2:59 AM

6th & Figueroa in 1932.

Hotel Clinton...I'd love to know what has gone on there.

sopas ej Jul 26, 2009 6:18 AM

Very nice photo.

The taller, elegant building still exists. It's the home of an exclusive social club, called the Jonathan Club, the address of that building is 545 S. Figueroa Street. That structure was built in 1924. Interesting to me because there's another social club nearby with its own taller building called the California Club, adjacent to the main library; I wonder if they competed with each other for members; or not. I'm sure they were both very exclusive, and probably still are-- though I know that the California Club isn't as "exclusive" as it was; I've been inside the California Club; I know that a long time ago, it didn't even allow Jews.

Whatever secrets and stories the Hotel Clinton could have told, it's been silenced forever-- that's where the Arco Towers-- uh, City National Plaza, is now.

Here's a long-shot of that intersection, courtesy LAPL, in 1952

ethereal_reality Jul 26, 2009 8:48 PM

Thanks for the interesting information sopas_ej.
I always look forward to your posts.

(the photo is cool as well)

sopas ej Jul 27, 2009 3:38 PM

No prob, ethereal_reality. I always looks forward to your posts too.

ethereal_reality Jul 28, 2009 2:08 AM
USC archive

above: Marijuana users July 1951.
USC archive

above: Marijuana users subjected to a photo op July 1951.

sopas ej Jul 28, 2009 6:06 PM

Beverly Hills City Hall, circa late 1930s (?). Intersection of Santa Monica Boulevard and Rexford Drive. Notice the street names stenciled on the curbs on the street corners. I've noticed these in photos of Beverly Hills pre-mid-1950s. If you've seen the opening credits of the movie "Sunset Boulevard," they do an extreme close-up of such a sign. I guess back then, Beverly Hills didn't use regular signs and signposts for street names?

Palm-lined Beverly Drive in Beverly Hills, 1942.

Those palms are a lot taller now. Both photos from the USC archive.

JDRCRASH Jul 28, 2009 9:48 PM

Woah, all these old photos of LA are great!:tup:

ethereal_reality Jul 31, 2009 11:32 PM
USC archive

above: The Amestoy Building pictured in 1945 at the northeast corner of Market and Main.
Many consider this building the first 'skyscraper' in Los Angeles.
Built in 1887, it was the first building in Los Angeles with an elevator.

Notice the Stake Out Bar in the lower right.
This was a popular hang-out for the LAPD in the 1940s.
At the time, the Police Dept. was located in City Hall across the street.

arlekin_m Aug 1, 2009 2:08 AM

awesome thread

sopas ej Aug 2, 2009 6:41 PM

Next year will be the 70th anniversary of the completion/opening of the Pasadena Freeway, the oldest freeway on the west coast, which runs from downtown Los Angeles to Pasadena. It was originally called the Arroyo Seco Parkway. When it opened, it became the new alignment for the famed US Route 66. In 1954 it was renamed the Pasadena Freeway. I think it's still officially called the Pasadena Freeway but some years ago the State of California officially declared it a historic highway, so there are a few signs that call it the Historic Arroyo Seco Parkway. Its Route 66 designation ended in 1964 when it was re-signed state route 11. Since 1981, it's been California State Route 110.

Here are some photos of its early years, all from the USC Archive.


1942. Then, as now, on most onramps, you have to make a complete stop before entering the freeway. And on many offramps, the driver is forced to slow down abruptly to 5 miles per hour. On/offramps are extremely short by modern freeway standards, and there are virtually no acceleration/deceleration lanes. Freeways built after this one benefited from these design flaws; obviously, highway engineers realized you need longer ramps and space to accelerate/decelerate.

DO NOT ENTER signs, 1942

New signs, 1951. I guess this freeway originally had those smaller signs you see. The larger, taller signs are obviously better for motorists, and were just recently installed in this photo. I guess they didn't think to remove the older signs at the same time they installed the newer ones.

Suicide, 1952. Someone leapt to their death onto the freeway from the York Blvd. overpass.

Car accident death, 1952

Under construction in 1939.

ethereal_reality Aug 2, 2009 9:57 PM

^^^ Pretty stunning photographs there sopas_ej.
I was kind of shocked to see the suicide and the traffic fatality.
Especially the suicide close-up with the hand clutching the keys.

below: I'll repost this pic of the Arroyo Seco Parkway to go along with yours.

ethereal_reality Aug 3, 2009 12:28 AM

above: On the lighter side, Venice Beach 1930.

cabasse Aug 3, 2009 1:38 AM

sopas, i'm not able to see your photos unfortunately. (not even placeholders)

it's interesting that there are a significant number of historic mid/highrises in places relatively far outside the core.

it's also interesting that i continually seem to read the thread title as "no irish" instead of "noir-ish" los angeles.

sopas ej Aug 3, 2009 1:49 AM


Originally Posted by cabasse (Post 4387412)
sopas, i'm not able to see your photos unfortunately. (not even placeholders)

I think the USC website is down; I had linked the images from that website. If I get the chance, I'll download the photos and upload them to my Imageshack account and link them through there.

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