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ethereal_reality Aug 3, 2009 10:51 PM

I never thought that noirish might look like no-irish.
I'm half Irish and half German does that help? :)

sopas ej Aug 7, 2009 3:54 AM

I searched "homeless" on the LAPL website, and this picture popped up. I find it fascinating and creepy at the same time:
Caption: Two prospective "tenants" look over jalopy jungle at Fourth and Omar Streets just off L.A.'s skid row. Old cars are used as sleeping quarters at night by homeless men, and city health and police authorities have declared the jalopies will be hauled off. Two cars have been burned up in recent weeks by sleepers, police say. Photo dated: March 26, 1954.

ethereal_reality Aug 7, 2009 9:30 PM

^^^interesting...and yes, a bit creepy.

I've been out of town.
I'll post more photos soon.

BrandonJXN Aug 7, 2009 11:51 PM

Totally amazing thread. Seeing black and white pictures of LA is quite haunting indeed.

Construction of the 101

sopas ej Aug 8, 2009 5:05 AM

Ah, the freeways...

Fatal accident, Cahuenga Freeway (Cahuenga Pass), 1951; victim, 26 year-old John J. Thornton. Just looking at this makes me cringe; of course this was back when cars weren't designed with crumple zones, let alone having seat belts and airbags.

This one really gets me. Look at that bent steering column and deformed steering wheel; the driver really hit those with a strong force before pushing his head through the windshield. And look at that driver's seat.

Both photos from the USC archive.

sopas ej Aug 8, 2009 5:51 AM

1952, Four-level interchange. Where the Hollywood/Santa Ana Freeway meets the Pasadena/Harbor Freeway. This interchange is the first 4-level interchange ever built in the world. Note the route signing; US Route 99 is now Interstate 10; the Hollywood Freeway is still US Route 101. Of course US Route 66 doesn't exist, the Pasadena/Harbor Freeway now being California State Route 110/Interstate 110, respectively. California already had an extensive highway/freeway system which predated the Federal Interstate system; this was the reason why California was exempt from having exit numbers until fairly recently.
From the USC archive.

The Four-level, 1953
From the USC archive.

Aerial view of the four-level, 1970

The four-level under construction, late 1940s

Wilshire and Bonnie Brae, 1937. From the USC archive.
By the 1920s, LA already had the most cars per capita than any other city on earth at the time. I'm sure it was scenes like this that led to the encouragement of the building of freeways. Reading through old LA traffic plan books from the 1950s at the LA Central Library, it's funny to know that back then, freeways were really seen as a salvation for many, as they would "forever free up traffic from surface streets and cut down travel times across the city."

BrandonJXN Aug 8, 2009 5:52 PM

Wow @ the speed limit only being 20 mph.

ethereal_reality Aug 9, 2009 8:14 PM

City Hall under construction 1928.
USC Digital Library

ethereal_reality Aug 9, 2009 8:17 PM

Another one of City Hall under construction 1928.
USC Digital Library

ethereal_reality Aug 9, 2009 8:37 PM

And several more from 1927/1928.
USC Digital Library
USC Digital Library
USC Digital Library

Wrightguy0 Aug 9, 2009 8:54 PM

mmm old L.A. *Drools*

one hell of a city, pity they didn't realize that freeways would encourage more traffic and cause more problems, hell it probably would have been cheaper to add a few new tracks to the street car lines and build a new subway system :\

BrandonJXN Aug 10, 2009 12:24 AM

Yay for construction pictures.

Union Bank (and a few other towers) under construction

Arco Towers

Downtown in the mid 60's. Notice the Convention Center under construction and the vast emptiness of the Bunker Hill Redevelopment

Downtown circa 1973 (Note AON Center and B of A Plaza under construction)

Downtown circa 1986 with the Wedbush building under construction. The Pac Bell building on the left is now 1010 Wilshire.

BrandonJXN Aug 10, 2009 2:42 AM

Bunker Hill (and Wilshire)

Downtown circa 1928

Downtown circa 1925 (Pershing Square on the left)

City Hall construction site circa 1926

Music Center and DWP Building all under construction

Century City circa 1964

More Union Bank

LA Coliseum

sopas ej Aug 10, 2009 7:17 AM

Ah, Glendale. The setting for "Mildred Pierce."

"With this money I can get away from you. From you and your chickens and your pies and your kitchens and everything that smells of grease. I can get away from this shack with its cheap furniture. And this town and its dollar days, and its women that wear uniforms and its men that wear overalls."-- Veda from "Mildred Pierce," 1945

Was Glendale all that bad back then, Veda?

Brand Boulevard, Glendale, 1940

Supermarket in Glendale, 1940

Both pics from USC archive

Of course there's the Glendale train station used in the ultimate film noir, "Double Indemnity" (1944). The train station still exists, and is restored; it's now a Metrolink and Amtrak train station. The photo is from 1936.

From LAPL website

ethereal_reality Aug 11, 2009 12:32 AM

ThreeHundred, all the construction pics are great.
Thanks for posting them. They're really interesting.

I had no idea 'Mildred Pierce' was set in Glendale sopas_ej.
Doesn't she open a club along the coast eventually.... in Malibu?
Maybe I have it mixed up with another film noir.

Seeing the Glendale train station is a treat.
Certainly glad it still exists...and in use.

Below, is a cool blog you would appreciate sopas_ej.

And I thought this was especially cool.
I invited him to post the photos on this thread....but I haven't heard from him.

CRIME WAVE 1954......shot in Glendale.

This guy took the time to shoot about 20 before and after photos
comparing Glendale today to Glendale 1954 as seen in the film noir 'Crime Wave'.

Below is just one example.

Above: Looking east on Glendale Blvd. in Atwater Village near the Hyperion Bridge.

Above: The same scene today.

This is just TOO GREAT.

sopas ej Aug 11, 2009 1:02 AM


Thanks for the link, ethereal. It's great; I've actually stumbled upon it a few months ago, I don't know why I never thought to post some photos from there on here.

"Mildred Pierce" is set in Glendale but you don't see any outside shots; you do see some neighborhood house shots near the beginning of the film but I don't know if that was actually filmed in Glendale. The story begins and ends in Malibu at a beach house, of course it's that flash-back sort of storyline.

SLO Aug 11, 2009 4:29 AM

Great additions....

sopas ej Aug 11, 2009 7:10 AM

More "Double Indemnity." Now I know I have to drive to these spots.

All pics from

The Dietrichson house.
6301 Quebec Drive, Hollywood Hills

Fred MacMurray's apartment in the film, 1825 N. Kingsley Drive, Los Angeles

Southwest corner of Hollywood and Western. I drive by this intersection often.

ethereal_reality Aug 11, 2009 2:38 PM

wow....I love the comparison pics from 'Double Indemnity' sopas_ej

ethereal_reality Aug 13, 2009 12:10 AM

The Brown Derby on Wilshire blvd.

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