The Daily Mirror

Larry Harnisch reflects on Los Angeles history

Category: 1901

Bullet of Mystery – Part 5




July 11, 1901, Lionel Comport lionel_comport_nd_crop


In case you just tuned in, I’m posting a small case study of research I did with Caroline Comport on her grandfather Lionel Comport for her master’s thesis. Researching Los Angeles is a treasure hunt, and every time I dig into the resources I find something new.


Bullet of Mystery – Part 1
Bullet of Mystery – Part 2
Bullet of Mystery – Part 3
Bullet of Mystery – Part 4
 
In Part 1, I summarized the case of Lionel Comport, a milkman who was shot in the back while making his rounds in 1901. In Part 2, we looked at some of the resources for online newspapers, and in Part 3, we examined sites that have property records on the corner where the shooting occurred. In Part 4, we delved into the Sanborn maps of the neighborhood. In my final post in the series, I’ll talk about one of the happy discoveries of research. There are, of course, many more places to look. This is a merely a sample.

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Bullet of Mystery – Part 4




July 11, 1901, Lionel Comport lionel_comport_nd_crop


In case you just tuned in, I’m posting a small case study of research I did with Caroline Comport on her grandfather Lionel Comport for her master’s thesis. Researching Los Angeles is a treasure hunt, and every time I dig into the resources I find something new.


Bullet of Mystery – Part 1
Bullet of Mystery – Part 2
Bullet of Mystery – Part 3
 
In Part 2, we looked at some of the resources for online newspapers ,and in Part 3 we examined sites that have property records on the corner where Lionel Comport was shot in 1901. This time we’ll look at Sanborn maps of the neighborhood.  

Continue reading »

Bullet of Mystery -- Part 3




July 11, 1901, Lionel Comport lionel_comport_nd_crop


In case you just tuned in, I’m posting a small case study of research I did with Caroline Comport on her grandfather Lionel Comport for her master’s thesis. Researching Los Angeles is a treasure hunt, and every time I dig into the resources I find something new.


Bullet of Mystery – Part 1
Bullet of Mystery – Part 2
 
In Part 2, we looked at some of the resources for online newspapers. Caroline was also interested in the background details of the story. What was the neighborhood like?

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Found on EBay – Hollywood Estate



 
 
  6219 Hollywood Blvd.  

A.G. Bartlett

A postcard showing the Hollywood estate of A.G. Bartlett at 6219 Hollywood Blvd. has been listed on EBay. The home was built about 1901 by Bartlett, the head of a downtown music company. The seven-acre estate, north of Hollywood Boulevard and and 210 feet east of Vine Street, was subdivided in 1927.  Bidding starts at $11.99.




Bullet of Mystery – Part 2




July 11, 1901, Lionel Comport lionel_comport_nd_crop


In case you just tuned in, I’m posting a small case study of research I did with Caroline Comport on her grandfather Lionel Comport for her master’s thesis. Researching Los Angeles is a treasure hunt, and every time I dig into the resources I find something new.


Bullet of Mystery – Part 1
 
If you’re a fan of detective stories, you may remember that Sherlock Holmes routinely read all the newspaper coverage as part of his investigations (and no, we won’t be putting on disguises or bringing in the Baker Street Irregulars). But the papers are a good place start.

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Bullet of Mystery – Part 1





  July 11, 1901, Bullet of Mystery  

Nov. 26, 1959, Lionel Comport Los Angeles history in the 1900s is an acquired taste. Most people limit themselves to  the Raymond Chandler era, the 1930s through the 1950s, as if Philip Marlowe moonlighted as a historian. Perhaps they find the city’s horse-and-buggy days too remote, but for me that era is like watching a modern metropolis slowly rise from the dust of a Wild West town.

I revisited 1901 when I met with Caroline Comport on Tuesday to help research her grandfather for a master’s thesis on how personal history shapes a family’s self-image. Or, as Caroline puts it, “How does who we think we are impact who we become?”

After spending years at microfilm machines and in various archives, I am always amazed at the relative ease of doing research these days. Our session was at Foxy’s in Glendale (free Wi-Fi!) and we delved into Los Angeles history while toasting English muffins. Truly the civilized way.
 
To summarize the story of Caroline’s grandfather, Lionel F. Comport was shot in the back July 10, 1901, while delivering milk from a horse-drawn wagon at 20th and Toberman streets in the University Park neighborhood. Police suggested various motives (Robbery? Dispute over a woman? A mad assassin?) but despite an intense investigation, officers never found the attacker.

The bullet  penetrated Comport’s intestines and by all expectations of medical care in that era, he should have died. However, he was rushed to a hospital (as fast as a horse-drawn ambulance would go, anyway) and survived the operation. He died in 1959 at the age of 79.

Here’s a brief case study in how we went about the research:

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Ex-Columbia Student Blames Drugs for Shooting at Actress





  March 23, 1901, Nameplate  

  March 23, 1901, Shirts  


  March 23, 1901, Wild Act of Youth  

March 23, 1901: The Times has grown to an 18-page paper. One front-page story reports a shooting in the Rathskeller of the Pabst Hotel (d. 1902) at 42nd Street and Broadway in New York, where former Columbia student Robert H. Moulton fired five shots into a party of actors and friends in a booth, slightly injuring a theater manager. Police originally assumed that Moulton was obsessed with  actress May Buckley, who was appearing in “The Price of Peace,” but investigators determined that Moulton had taken so much morphine that he had no idea what he was doing.
 

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Pages of History -- A. Victor Segno's 'How to Be Happy Tho' Married'





  How to Be Happy Tho' Married  

A. Victor Segno The library at the Daily Mirror HQ recently acquired the elusive work “How to Be Happy Tho’ Married” by our favorite charlatan and con man, A. Victor Segno.

Although we have several of Segno’s works (“The Law of Mentalism” and “How to Live 100 Years”) “How to Be Happy Tho’ Married” has been near the top  of our desiderata list because Segno abandoned his wife in Los Angeles and ran off with another woman. 

As such, we hoped to find amusement in this little 1901 pamphlet (which cost more than $25 in 2009 dollars), but it seems that in some ways little has changed in more than a century:

“Marriage, like all human institutions, has its advantages and disillusions; therefore, it should be entered into with care and the selection of a partner founded upon good judgment.”


"Marriage is the door through which many deluded mortals have returned to earth -- and their senses."


We’re still looking for “How to Have Beautiful Hair.”

ALSO

A. Victor Segno on the Daily Mirror

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