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GaylordWilshire Aug 27, 2015 3:26 PM


Seems to still be there... but for how much longer?

Tourmaline Aug 27, 2015 6:46 PM


Originally Posted by MichaelRyerson (Post 7144047)
Could be 5454 West Boulevard. The very modest Spanish bungalow at that address looks as though it could date to the twenties and although still a long ways from Melrose it would have been near the Western Avenue streetcars. And 5454 West Boulevard puts them close to Hawthorne.

Thanks to Tovangar2, MR,GW, OS and HossC for contributions on this subject.

Astute observation MR. I noticed the “W” and unwittingly assumed that considering the incredible scrutiny given all things MM, another source definitely connected the W with “Wilshire” rather than “West” Blvd. Perhaps there is even more light to be shed on this subject.

Not surprisingly, MM may have never even visited the 5454 address, whatever its attached boulevard. There seems little disagreement that infant MM spent time in Hawthorne with Albert and Ida Bolender. In this bio-video, narrated by none other than John Huston, we are told that twelve days after her birth, MM was taken from the hospital to the Bolender’s Hawthorne home. How or why 5454 figured into her life remains a mystery.

Assuming, for the moment, that there were no questions regarding Marilyn’s dubious connection with 5454 Wilshire, there remains evidence that someone named J.J. Vallicella was connected to that address in 1923. Elsewhere in the same directory, there is a listing for John J Vallicella (fruits) and it lists the 5454 Wilshire address as "r" for residence. Mr. Vallicella's other '23-CD listing is found under the heading of "fruits and vegetables - retail." This strongly suggests that this address was either a farm or, more likely, a farmer's market/fruit stand that was appurtenant to a residence, but this makes a lot of assumptions. In any event, while this does not completely eliminate any connection with Glady's Monroe or her daughter, MM, it hardly makes for a compelling case otherwise. FWIW, Tokutara Fujita is listed at 6604 Wilshire and Masuda Masakichi is listed at nearby 6896 Wilshire, putting them somewhere close to Wilshire and San Vicente.

1923 - Wilshire and San Vicente

Wilshire to the left.

1926, August - Wilshire and San Vicente

1926 - Marilyn's possible-but-unlikely 5454 Wilshire-address would be in the sparsely depicted area "roughly" a block south (to the right) of the oil derricks.

1930 - Wilshire and San Vicente (Little if any evidence of farms or aerodromes)

HossC Aug 27, 2015 7:06 PM


Originally Posted by HossC (Post 7143980)

I didn't spot any ship emblems on this Bank of America building, but it did have some interesting tilework. It was on the corner of 7th Street and Lafayette Park Place, where 7th meets Hoover. Obviously more of Julius Shulman's work, this is "Job 1010: Bank of America (Los Angeles, Calif.),1951". On the far right, the bar is called the "I'm Inn".

I've just found an earlier picture of the Bank of America at 7th and Lafayette Park Place. Back in 1929 it had a big roof sign. LAPL has the location incorrect in their description: "Exterior view of a Islamic style Bank of America branch, located on the corner of 7th Street and Flower. Photo dated: May 13, 1929."

Incidentally, when did Lafayette Park Place get its name? Although Lafayette Park is labeled on the 1921 Baist map, the street next to it is called Benton Boulevard.

tovangar2 Aug 27, 2015 8:18 PM

Marilyn Monroe
Thx Tourmaline for that YouTube link. I'd never seen that particular shot of the Bolenders' house before. Makes an interesting 'then & now':

I read somewhere that the Bolenders bought a former Chinese restaurant building from the Sunset Strip and had it moved to the left (west) of their home. They remodeled it and lived there, renting their original home out to workers.

Maybe the restaurant is still in there somewhere (that house is huge now):
google maps

I thought everything MM and been researched endlessly, but I notice under Gladys Monroe's profession on MM's birth certificate it says "Malian Pictures Lab" (if I'm reading that right), not Consolidated Film Labs (?) Tourmaline correctly states it says "Motion Picture Lab".

Tourmaline Aug 27, 2015 8:54 PM


Originally Posted by tovangar2 (Post 7144624)
I thought everything MM and been researched endlessly, but I notice under Gladys Monroe's profession on MM's birth certificate it says "Malian Pictures Lab" (if I'm reading that right), not Consolidated Film Labs (?)

I read it to be "Motion Pictures Lab." But I could be wrong. And when it comes to dead ends, the 1918CD lists Moving Picture Laboratory Workers with meetings at Labor Temple. Obviously, 1918 is far from 1926, but Gladys could have been a member and might have left some 5454 records . . . somewhere. :shrug:

Another tidbit. The cursumperficio site alleges the following about Gladys Baker's negative cutting career. I have absolutely no idea concerning the accuracy of this information. :shrug::shrug::shrug:


worked there [CFI] as film cutter since 1923 (). Six days a week she cut films on the directors instructions before giving them to the montage workshop which manufactured definitive negatives. She worked there whe she was pregnant of Norma Jeane. One of the alleged father of Norma Jeane was Stanley Gifford, one of Gladys colleague. Grace McKee also worked there. The Consolidated Film Industries, merged with the Bennett Films Lab, not far from Santa Monica Boulevard. Quickly, Gladys quit. The new location of the studio needed 2 trolley changes and it was more than what she could afford.


On July 26, 1919 : [Charles Stanley Gifford] married Lillian Priester, aged 21 (like him)(). She left him in October 1923 and in the divorce statement in May 1925, he admitted "to have boasted with no decency about his feminine conquests". She obtained the divorce in the motive of "extreme cruelty" In the total of his conquests was Gladys Baker who lived in the same building like him; their affair ended when she announced him that she was pregnant. There are no evidence about a relationship between this potential father and Norma Jeane, during her childhood. But Gladys didn't ever claim, in private or publicly, that Gifford was the father of the child. She didn't ask him the least support, neither material nor emotional, for her as for the child. When she was 18 and married to Jim Dougherty, a friend of the family gave to Norma Jeane Gifford's phone number; she called him but he hung up as soon as she introduced herself as Glady's s daughter. Later Norma Jeane found his trace again at the farm of Red Rock Dairy, in Hemet, near Palm Springs (South East of Los Angeles) where he lived with his third wife and their children. In 1951, in the space of a couple of weeks, she went there, first with Sidney Skolsky then with Natasha Lytess. In 1961 it seems that she had made two other trips, one with Ralph Roberts, the other one with Pat Newcomb. It seems that he had changed his mind shortly before Marilyn's death; he would have sent her a card to wish her a good recovery after her stay in a mental institution in New York City. In 1962, after a heart attack, he asked a nurse to contact Marilyn, but she didn't have any reason to talk to him, while he had so often rejected her.

Maybe something is lost in the translation? Same building like suggests the possibility that Gladys had more than one residence and maybe a choice of surnames prior to giving birth. :shrug: It is also possible that if she was listed in any directory, her name or the address was misspelled.

FWIW, Chas S Gifford is listed in the '23CD as residing at 7131 Cardiff (Ave), Palms.

GaylordWilshire Aug 27, 2015 10:12 PM


Originally Posted by HossC (Post 7144526)
Incidentally, when did La Fayette Place get its name? Although Lafayette Park is labeled on the 1921 Baist map, the street next to it is called Benton Boulevard.

Benton Blvd extended from Seventh St north--the segment from Seventh to Sixth presumably changed some time after the petition mentioned below, apparently by 1930; Lafayette Park Place north of the park was once Andrews Blvd and appears to have had its name changed around the same time.
Times Dec 1, 1927

tovangar2 Aug 27, 2015 10:59 PM

Marilyn Monroe
Thx Tourmaline for clearing up "Motion Picture Lab" on the birth certificate. A person could try to document everything about MM accurately and never have time for anything else. I'm not going to try (I wouldn't be the best person to do it anyway).

Tetsu Aug 28, 2015 12:08 AM


Originally Posted by Beaudry (Post 7141316)
Well of course! I wish Palmer Conner had shot some of the café, those slides would have been something to behold, all that aluminum and glass glinting in the sunlight.

I have seen one bit of color, which I'm attaching here. Just about a year ago someone put up for auction on eBay a roll of film, which I only discovered later as a "sold" while doing an Angels Flight search. Normally I'm not too hip to posting other people's eBay wins because Lord knows I spend tons of cash on slides that end up on NLA or Facebook "old LA" sites—but I guess that's part of the game, you run the risk of losing control of your image when it's already been "part of the internet." That said, here's a small bit of a roll of amateur '50s 8 or 16mm, mostly shots of folks indoors whooping it up, but with the attached film of the outside as an establishing shot. (Perhaps it was shot by A. F. Peters, prop., as mentioned on the matchbook I posted?) My message to whomever now owns this film: I will pay you Very Good Money for it! Heck, I'll pay you money to license it. Plus I'd just like to see it!

Aaaaanyway so a couple stitched-together shots from the eBay auction, and a close-up of the door—looks red to me! Well, sort of, that call box looks red, the doors look on the red side of, maroon? Chestnut?

Beaudry: Thanks for sharing the color shots, especially in spite of your apprehension about doing so. The NW corner of 3rd & Olive has been much like the SW corner of 4th & Hope for me, in that photos seem to be hard to come by, probably for the same reason - more photogenic sights adjacent (Angels Flight station and the Hildreth, respectively). I think the first time I saw the NW corner of 3rd & Olive was during the recent screening of Angels Flight you guys did, incidentally. :D

ethereal_reality Aug 28, 2015 1:19 AM


Originally Posted by HossC (Post 7144034)

Can anyone read the name of the hotel apartments above the roof of the I'm Inn?
Detail of picture above.

Hoss, the sign you mentioned is now partially covered by a billboard.


...luckily, there's another sign on the south side (I had to travel back in time when the trees were smaller to get this view)

:previous: but I still can't read it.:(

But wait, there's another painted sign in the back of the apartment building facing Hoover.

Here's that sign.

:previous: note that it says Arms instead of Hotel.

I'm hoping one of you can help decipher the ghost signs. :)
(the apartment building was built in 1924)


HenryHuntington Aug 28, 2015 1:41 AM

I'm reading BEASDEL ARMS in the bottom photo, ER. But BEASDEL has two letters too many for the "_______ Hotel Apartments" signs. Under some magnification, the closest I can get is DEL-BE.

CityBoyDoug Aug 28, 2015 3:30 AM

Business as usual....LA noir
Murder of Detective Lieut. Hugh A. Crowley. Westwood, CA. 1932

Officer Crowley was shot and killed when he interrupted a robbery at a theater in the Westwood District. One of two men was wounded by Officer Crowley's return fire. Both were arrested a few days later.

It was determined that the suspect that was shot by Officer Crowley was the one who killed him. He was convicted of first degree murder and hanged at San Quentin Prison on August 18, 1933. The other suspect was also sentenced to death but his sentence was later commuted to life.

HossC Aug 28, 2015 8:11 AM


Originally Posted by ethereal_reality (Post 7144994)

Hoss, the sign you mentioned is now partially covered by a billboard.

...luckily, there's another sign on the south side (I had to travel back in time when the trees were smaller to get this view)

Well, this is a little embarrassing. Due to the angles, I thought the building with the hotel sign was closer to 7th Street and had been demolished. As soon as I took the Googlemobile around to S Rampart Street, I realized that I'd seen this building before. Not only have we already covered it ... the original post was by me! Here's the 1978 pictue of the Bel-Rio Hotel Apartments at 711 S Rampart Boulevard that started my original post:

The full post is here, and covers its current name of Greenwich West, and its original name of the Blasdel Arms. Thanks to e_r and HenryHuntington for the follow-ups.

While we're in the area, thanks also to GW for answering my Benton Boulevard /Lafayette Park Place question. If the name was changed by 1930, it's possible that the 1929 LAPL photo of the bank shows a sign with the original name, but it's too small to see.

HossC Aug 28, 2015 8:19 AM

The corner of 7th and Flower was once home to this branch of Bank of America. It looks familiar to me, but none of my searches found any previous mentions (it was diagonally opposite the Martz Flats). These pictures are from the Julius Shulman photoset "Job 912: Bank of America (Los Angeles, Calif.),1951".

This branch, at 801 W 7th Street, did have a ship emblem.

The reverse view gives a better look at the Pig N Whistle next door. The roof sign in the background on the right is from the Gates Hotel.

Unlike the previous Shulman Bank of America photosets I've found, this one comes with a couple of interior pictures.

All from Getty Research Institute

There's now a branch of The Coffee Bean and Tea Leaf on the corner. The building looks to have similar proportions to the bank, so did it get a makeover?

There's also a blank sign on the roof. Was this from the Bank of America?

This undated image from LAPL shows the building that was on the corner before the bank.

mjknight71 Aug 28, 2015 11:45 AM


Originally Posted by tovangar2 (Post 7116658)

Still looking for pix, but here's the 1938 Building Permit:

The Building Permit for what-was-originally the California Federal building was approved in 1963

Do you have one of these for 10674 W Pico?

1952/1953 it is there on 1964 it is Citi Bank

ethereal_reality Aug 28, 2015 1:38 PM

Talk about straight from central casting! This guy looks like he just stepped out of a film noir. (note the dramatic shadow ;))

originally posted by CityBoyDoug

Good find CBD.


oldstuff Aug 28, 2015 3:05 PM


Originally Posted by Tourmaline (Post 7143829)
HossC gave us a look at the intersection of Alvarado and Temple Streets here:

TIme for a second viewing?

1923 - Temple and Alvarado

Good location for a Richfield Station

Shell Station might do nicely here

Nine years later in 1932.

1932 - Alvarado and Temple Streets

The Ship Golf

Before Madison Avenue?

"Come and get it?" Tuned to modern modern motors. But what about old motors?

Nine cent/gal "Flash" and a familiar Richfield sculpture at Hillside Service Station, 2101 Temple Street.

Nine cents/Gal for "Green Streak"

MRyerson picks up the story five years later, 1937.

Shell and Atlantic RICHFIELD are still at cross corners to each other. :whisper:

The address of the trailer court managed by Frank Vardon and his wife Vera was 2121 Temple Street according to the 1940 Census. At that time there were four other persons living in the trailers there. Vardon was 63 in 1940. He was born in Missouri.

Mr. Hanson is no longer living there in 1940. The Vardons appear at the same address in voter registrations until at least 1948. Frank died in 1950. Vera lived until 1988 when she died in Orange County.

From a newspaper article which appeared in the Spartansburg Herald-Journal on September 9, 1935 we learn that Frank and Vera Vardon were with the Charlie Mack "Melody Ramblers" review and that their act consisted of harmony singing, music, comedy and imitations. The article also tells us that they had an excellent wardrobe. They are mentioned in many newspaper articles of the time in the east, Midwest and also in Canada.

tovangar2 Aug 28, 2015 3:19 PM

Online Building Records / Hugh A. Crowley

Originally Posted by mjknight71 (Post 7145330)
Do you have one of these for 10674 W Pico?

1952/1953 it is there on 1964 it is Citi Bank

There are 21 permits for that address. Start here:

Click the link at the bottom of the page. That will take you to the page where you type in the address "10674 W Pico".

Beaudry recently alerted us to this new online system. It's very useful.



Originally Posted by ethereal_reality (Post 7145408)
Good find CBD.


Deranged LA Crimes has two good posts on the Hugh A. Crowley matter.

(When I'm actually in the theater lobby, I've never been able to figure out exactly where the body was.)

Tourmaline Aug 28, 2015 4:04 PM

Never saw the light?

1952 - Sunset and La Brea. An auto accident (somehow) involving a blind pianist, Mary Ann "Ginny" Jordan.

tovangar2 Aug 28, 2015 4:40 PM


Originally Posted by HossC (Post 7145297)
The corner of 7th and Flower was once home to this branch of Bank of America.

That's a wonderful set of images of 7th and Flower Hoss.

I wanted to add one more, previously posted by e_r, to show what we've lost and what we've gained.

Among other buildings, the Abigail Stark residence and the Romanesque First Baptist Church are on view at right, and, of course, the Martz Flats (center)
(wikimedia commons dates this shot as 1916):


Originally Posted by ethereal_reality (Post 5271875)

(Lebanon Street runs diagonally across the lower right corner of the photo)

The three-story brick hotel on the NW corner (801 W 7th) looks to be the same building as the one in the last photo in your post.
Once the biggest building on the intersection, it was later dwarfed by its new neighbors:

Originally Posted by HossC (Post 7145297)

Tourmaline Aug 28, 2015 5:03 PM

The once and future home of Lord Motor Car Company, 1240 S. Figueroa (Previously at 1032 S. Olive)

Paul G. Hoffman & Co.

Paul Hoffman started LA's Studebaker dealership in 1919. His accomplishments were many. He was Presidential Medal of Freedom recipient. Read about him here:

1949 - Paul G Hoffman

1929 - The Hoffman Building. Figueroa and Pico "Studebaker."

~1938. Seventh and Figueroa "Studebaker built in LA" and "Paul G. Hoffman."

1950 - Bye Bye Hoffman Building. (Hello and Goodbye to Statler Hilton)

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