The Daily Mirror

Larry Harnisch reflects on Los Angeles history

Category: March 30, 2008 - April 5, 2008

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Cheryl Crane

Photograph by the Los Angeles Times

Cheryl Crane in a heavily retouched photograph published April 6, 1958, while she was being held in the stabbing death of Johnny Stompanato. This is one of the most heavily repainted photographs I have ever come across.

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Johnny Stompanato, RIP

Above, the Mirror brings out an extra on the Johnny Stompanato killing.

Photograph by Gary Smith / Los Angeles Times

Coroner's attendants remove the body of Johnny Stompanato from the home of Lana Turner, 730 N. Bedford Drive, Beverly Hills. Published in The Times on April 5, 1958.


Photograph by the Los Angeles Times

Johnny Stompanato's watch, ID bracelet, ring and good luck charms. Note that the photo was so big I had to scan in two sections and paste it together.


Los Angeles Times file photo


Johnny Stompanato and Lana Turner in an undated snapshot.


Los Angeles Times file photo

Johnny Stompanato in an undated copy shot of a picture obtained by The Times after he was killed.

Photograph by Paul Calvert / Los Angeles Times

Johnny Stompanato testifies Aug. 3, 1949, at a coroner's inquest in the shotgun slaying of Mickey Cohen associate Edward "Neddy" Herbert.  Note that the background has been painted out and that the picture has been cropped in red grease pencil. Most of The Times photos from the 1940s look like this.

Photograph by Gordon Wallace / Los Angeles Times

Johnny Stompanato in a photo published Aug. 6, 1949, when he was charged with vagrancy.

Photograph by the Los Angeles Times

Attorney Joseph Scott, left, and Johnny Stompanato, Oct. 4, 1949, after Stompanato was charged with vagrancy. Note the crop marks and the retouching to paint out the background so that the photograph could be used as a one-column mug shot.


A check for $3 from Lana Turner to "John Stompanato Smith."

Photograph by Gary Smith / Los Angeles Times

Johnny Stompanato's T-Bird, parked outside Lana Turner's home on the night of the killing.

Photograph by Loren Patty / Los Angeles Times

Beverly Hills Police Sgt. Russell Peterson with the knife that killed Johnny Stompanato.

Photograph by Delmar Watson / Los Angeles Times

Beverly Hills Police Officer Joe Head examines the knife that killed Johnny Stompanato. Note that the knife handle has been retouched in white to make it stand out against the background. It's not visible in the scan, but yes, that is Cheryl Crane's fingerprint card.

Los Angeles Times file photo

Johnny Stompanato's funeral in Woodstock, Ill., April 9, 1958, as an American Legion official presents the flag from the casket to Stompanato's brother Carmine. The woman seated second from the right is Stompanato's stepmother, Verena.

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Matt Weinstock

April 4, 1958


Paul Coates

April 4, 1958


Know your Dodgers

April 4, 1958


Remembering Martin Luther King

March 17-18, 1968
Anaheim, Los Angeles


Above, The Times covers the Rev. Martin Luther King Jr.'s news conference at the Disneyland Hotel and his sermon the next day at Second Baptist Church in Los Angeles.

Quote of the Day: "We must end the war in Vietnam." --The Rev. Martin Luther King Jr.

1968_0317_king02 1968_0318_king 1968_0318_king02

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April 4, 1958


Above, MGM is making an expensive gamble on "Ben-Hur." Below, The Times continues its daily news feature on Holy Week ... and has a story about the beginning of Passover ... Detectives are trying to find out why a family was told that a young woman's suicide attempt was fatal -- when she actually recovered ... Erin O'Brien and her horse, Rusty, model Easter bonnets they will be wearing in the Beverly Hills Easter parade ... And former champion boxer Tommy Harrison tells a judge he stole a ham "cause my wife and kids were hungry."


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April 4, 1938


Above, the "Laugh Dictators." Who says politics doesn't influence the arts? Below, what's being said from the pulpit about the plight of Europe.

  • Episcopalian: "In Germany, Hitler has attempted to dominate even religion, which means not only the unfortunate suppression of the Jews but the persecution of Catholic and Protestant.... The hope of democracy  lies largely in the continuation of a free pulpit and a free press."
  • Memorial Christian: "America is marching down the road to dictatorship.... One by one the fundamental liberties of our people are being filched from us by a group of clever idealists who are willing to trade the people for a mess of pottage."
  • Methodist: "Once again Nazi ruthlessness has taken its toll from the brilliant leaders of a great city -- this time Vienna....  To this race [Jews], in the spirit of him who was the greatest Jew of all, we extend our sympathy. To this race, America reaches out her arms in love and pity, offering refuge and sanctuary."
  • Unitarian: "Never were so many thoughtful persons working on international problems as today. This is a time for hope, not despair."

And check out the Southwest Museum's woody!


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April 4, 1908


Above, Opening Day in the Pacific Coast League. Below, a bitter legal battle in which a woman is seeking a court order barring her husband and his adopted children from selling any of their real estate because she would receive a share of the property upon her husband's death. Jennie E. Clopton charges that her stepchildren, Pearle and Hugh, have conspired to break up the family since she married their adoptive father, Col. Hoggatt Clopton, two years ago. What's more, they are of mixed race! "Mrs. Clopton declares that the two adopted children,  whom she detested on account of the Negro blood,  started out to break up the family, and used many means to accomplish that end," The Times says ... S. Ito is accused of killing a Japanese American named Higashi in a Guadalupe poolroom. "There does not seem to be much evidence to show that a murder took place or that the prisoner committed the crime, but he is being held while the district attorney's office tries to gather some," The Times says ... And lots of remedies for whatever is ailing men ... Plus the great Fer-Don is giving away the Fer-Don family medicine chest. 


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Matt Weinstock

April 3, 1958


Paul Coates

April 3, 1958


Found on EBay


Someone went to a reunion of the Grand Army of the Republic in Santa Ana a century ago and got this button as a souvenir. Now it's for sale on EBay. I remember even when I was youngster in a little Illinois farm town, some homes had GAR markers in the frontyard, although the veterans had passed away long ago.

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