The Daily Mirror

Larry Harnisch reflects on Los Angeles history

Category: June 7, 2009 - June 13, 2009

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Found on EBay -- The Brown Derby

Brown Derby Menu

This c. 1947 menu from the Brown Derby has been listed on EBay. Bidding starts at $9.99.

Matt Weinstock -- June 13, 1959

June 13, 1959, Unbelieveable


Mafia Troubles

Matt Weinstock Sometimes a person just doesn't know what to think.

When the Jackie Leonard case broke, Chief Parker said the beating was pure revenge by the Mafia," to which he has attributed all sorts of deviltry. A few days later, in a strange flip-flop, he said Leonard suffered an "illusion."

(This, of course, opens a whole new area of contemplation. Only in L.A. can an illusion strike down a citizen. But never mind that, let us keep our eye on the ball.)

Meanwhile, Leonard insists he was beaten, presumably by thugs unknown, and some medical testimony bears him out.

Sensibly, the federal grand jury will investigate the matter, which obviously has gotten out of hand.

June 13, 1959, Coed Raped However, it seems to this corner that the probers are forgetting or ignoring a vital facet of the case. Certainly a Maria representative should be invited to sit in on the exploratory sessions. Otherwise some of these smart Maria guys might decide to sue for slander.

 UTTER CONFUSION -- we really had it this week -- also settled momentarily on the office of the President's Committee on Government Contracts, which checks on discriminatory hiring by firms doing government work.

A woman came into the office in the Federal Building and announced she wished to file a complaint against a large company which has such a contract. Asked the nature of her grievance, she said, "Illegal use of beams." The firm, the troubled lady said, was shooting harmful rays at her.



I like but very little him
Who nonchalantly leaves the curb
When traffic's flood is at the brim,
My ruffled nerves to redisturb.

June 13, 1959, Mirror Comics
A LITERARY mystery, the strange case of B. Travan, author of "The Treasure of the Sierra Madre," has book people pondering.

The enigma was revived recently when E.R. Hagemann, UCLA English prof, wrote a biographical essay on him.

 In it he stated he had to "patch together a chaotic melange of facts, guesses, legends, myths and downright unadorned lies."

It is unknown whether Traven, if that is his name, which he had denied, is alive or dead. It is uncertain whether he was born in America or elsewhere.

He could have been the "Hal Croves" who frequented the set during the filming of the John Huston picture in Mexico, but no one is sure.

"He courted obscurity as another might court fame," Hagemann wrote.

The book was published in Berlin in 1927 as "Der Schats der Sierra Madre" after being translated from English. In 1934 it was published in London as a translation from the German.

June 13, 1959, Music Another of Traven's books, "Die Weisse Rose," was translated from English but never published in English. In all he wrote 15 books which were translated into 21 languages.

Take it away, Perry Mason.


 TELEGRAM from Joe M. Marshall, San Fernando: "I am manager of a large dry wall construction company. We use seven pickup trucks in our operation. My superintendent, Gene Caldwell, dislikes driving the orange pickup. Says it attracts bees. Is this possible?"

So of Gene has been aggravating those poor bees with that orange pickup again, what do you know!


June 13, 1959, Abby THAT peripatetic publicist Al Hix reports from Rome, where he is plugging the film "Jovanka," that when a snack bar was opened recently in the Colosseum the Rome Daily American headlined the story, "Feeding Christians Instead of Eating Them in Colosseum."

FOOTNOTES -- John McPortland's book, "The Kingdom of Johnny Cool," completed before he died last year, is out in paperback. His widow, Eleanor, who lives in Monterey, was in L.A. this week for meetings on a possible movie sale ... Use of the suffix "wise" reached its nadir Thursday, in the opinion of Doris Hellman. Jerry Doggett, broadcasting the Dodger game, said, "Podres has been in complete control of this game, pitchingwise."

Paul V. Coates -- Confidential File, June 13, 1959


Confidential File

Mash Notes and Comments

Paul Coates"Dear Paul,

"There is a new game going around that I am the sole instigator of which has the skeptics saying, 'How about that?' It's spreading like wild flowers.

"Here's all you do: Write down a three digit number; the first one must be larger than the other two.

Now, reverse this number and subtract that from the original.

"Then take this remainder and reverse it and add the two together.

"Subtract 400. Got it?

"Now then, turn to that page number in the Central District L.A. phone book for June '59, and look at the second listing on that page.

"How about that?

June 13, 1959, Fire "You can see how new this trick is because the '59 book is still crashing in screen doors out in the fringe areas.

"This is no trick, Paul. I mean, this is no gag or joke. It's for real.

"It's more of a trick or a gag, though, than it is a stunt or a gimmick.

"You know what I mean?" (Signed) Cliff Mackay, 6844 Camrose Dr., Hollywood.

--Shut up and deal.

(Press Release) "With all the acclaim Baker, the space monkey, has received, a fellow simian today requested that he not get into his act -- shining shoes. In return, the simian promised not to take space flights.

"Kokomo Jr., famed 3-year-old TV chimpanzee, retained as a shoeshine demonstrator by Esquire polish firm, sent a congratulatory wire with proposition to the recuperating Baker at the Naval Aviation School of Medicine, Pensacola, Fla.

"The chimp has been receiving national acclaim for his shoe-shining feats.

June 13, 1959, CSUN "The wire read: 'Congratulations on your successful space flight. I won't take space flights if you won't shine shoes.'

"The wire was signed, 'Apingly yours.'"
(Signed) Carl Erbe Associates, Public Relations, 595 Madison Ave., New York City.

--That's fairly clever, if you consider it was written by a monkey.

 "Dear Sir:

"Before you buy a boat, as you mentioned you were planning to do in your column, send to the Navy Department up Nor'East and donate about $10 for Nathaniel Bowditch's navigation study, and a few rules in mathematics are a must.

"Else, use you sextant for an anchor.

"Educated advice on the subject of navigation is the biggest help.

Advice From an Old Sailor

"Look what happened to the master of the schooner Hesperus. He wouldn't take the wise old sailor's advice:

"'I pray thee, put into yonder port, for I fear a hurricane.

"'Last night the moon had a dark ring around it -- tonight no moon we see.

"' The skipper blew a whiff from his pipe and a scornful laugh laughed he.

"' I can ride the roughest gale that ever wind did blow...'

"Use a few of the well-known lights on dark nights -- such as Venus, Mercury, Mars, Jupiter and Neptune.

"You also got to know the difference between longitude and latitude.

"You should know the difference between port side and starboard.

"Boating is a serious business. Don't take it lightly. Remember, you've got to use your head."

(Signed) Leo F. Quinn, P.O. Box 385, L.A. 53.

--Well, that much I DO know.

A Kinder, Simpler Time Dept.: Your Cinema

June 13, 1938, Marihuana  

June 13, 1938: "Marihuana" is playing at the President theater, Broadway near 8th Street. And guess who's in "How to Undress in Front of Your Husband": Trixie Friganza!

USC Coach Turns Down Lakers' Offer

June 13, 1969, Dumb Artist

"Who Wants a Dumb Artist Around Who Can't Even Keep Out of Trouble?"

June 13, 1969, Sports The Lakers offered their coaching job to a very successful college coach who wouldn't even have to relocate.

No, not John Wooden.

USC Coach Bob Boyd turned down the job after meeting with owner Jack Kent Cooke and general manager Fred Schaus. "We expect to have an improved team next winter and should be representative in the Pacific-8 Conference," Boyd told The Times' Mal Florence.

Boyd might have been overshadowed by Wooden but he was an outstanding basketball coach. USC was 216-131 during his tenure from 1967-79. Who knows how well the Trojans would have fared in the NCAA tournament if more than one team per conference had been able to advance, as is the case today.

So the Lakers' search went on. Boyd apparently preferred facing the Bruins rather than the Celtics.

--Keith Thursby

Former President Says 'Liberal,' 'Conservative' Labels Are 'Dumdum' Words

June 13, 1939, Lipstick

"She Left This Note Written in Lipstick! It Explains Everything.'

June 13, 1939, Kelso

June 13, 1939, Kelso

June 13, 1939, Hoover

In a commencement address at Earlham College, former President Herbert Hoover says that labels like "liberal" and "conservative" are "dumdum words to assassinate men and then to plant bitter onions on their graves."
June 13, 1939, Pinky Tomlin

June 13, 1939, Molest
June 13, 1939, Cadets
President Roosevelt shakes hands with West Point graduates and gives them their commissions as second lieutenants.

June 13, 1939, Jewish Refugees

Jewish refugees seeking sanctuary face a difficult plight after being turned away from Cuba, Peru and Mexico.
June 13, 1939, Brooks Bros.

Adjusted for inflation, the suits cost $383.63 and $460.36.
June 13, 1939, American

A massed band of young musicians performs at the Hollywood Bowl in a program titled "I Am an American."

June 13, 1939, Stabbing

Richard Holland, 16, is charged with killing Paul Butler in a brawl after a trip to one of the offshore gambling ships. Richard's father admitted taking his son to the gambling ship and said several people in their group had been drinking. The judge ruled that Holland acted in self-defense, but committed him to the Blade School at Atascadero, Calif. That's right. Someone accused in a stabbing was sentenced to the Blade School.

June 13, 1939, Great American Family

Lee Shippey's "Great American Family" sets an attendance record at the Pasadena Playhouse. 

Below, a federal official says Los Angeles is jeopardizing its chances of getting federal slum clearance funding by failing to submit proposals.

June 13, 1939, Slum Clearance

June 13, 1939, Editorial Cartoon

President Roosevelt -- seeking an unprecedented third term -- and Vice President John Nance Garner of Texas are expected to compete for the 1940 Democratic nomination.

June 13, 1939, diplomas

Local school officials seek ways to prevent drunkenness and reckless driving by graduating seniors.

June 13, 1939, Bowron
June 13, 1939, Lee Side O' L.A.

Above, Lee Shippey reminises about  church picnics in one of his typical columns and talks about William S. Hart's re-release of "Tumbleweeds."

At left, Mayor Bowron dispels rumors that he plans to resign to take a post on the federal bench.

June 13, 1939, Maisie

Opening today: "Maisie" and "Calling Dr. Kildare."

June 13, 1939, Peace
It's amazing that anyone living in 1939 could believe that peace was near. But Stephen Stanton Myrick did!
June 13, 1939, Fiddler

Jimmy Fidler takes a look at the box office revenues of  Warner Bros.' "Dark Victory," which was a "Class-B" production. 

June 13, 1939, Byron Nelson

Byron Nelson takes the National Open by three strokes against Craig Wood.

June 13, 1939, Sports

Cooperstown celebrates the centennial of baseball.

San Francisco Court Bans Strip Scene in Play

June 13, 1899, Turtle  

June 13, 1899: San Francisco audiences are crowding the theater to see the "widely advertised disrobing scene" in Leon Gandillot's "The Turtle."

Oct. 23, 1898, The Turtle

Oct. 23, 1989: Sadie Martinot's scandalous scene in "The Turtle."  

May 9, 1923, Sadie Martinot

May 9, 1923: Sadie Martinot, star of "The Turtle," dies in an insane asylum, quoting lines from her performances.

All-Night Bakery

June 13, 1889, Vienna Bakery

June 13, 1889: The Vienna Bakery, 1st and Spring streets, open all night.

Found on EBay -- Bullock's Wilshire

Bullock's Wilshire Red Dress Ebay

Bullock's Wilshire Red Dress Label
This red outfit from Bullock's Wilshire has been listed on EBay. Bidding starts at $99.99.

Matt Weinstock -- June 12, 1959

Wrong Rite

Matt Weinstock It seems incredible but people keep going to the wrong funerals.

Announcement was made in a church on a recent Sunday that a faithful parishioner named Fred Johnson had died and services would be held on the following Tuesday.

A couple who had known him for a long time but had been out of touch with him were grieved and attended the service. Afterward they went up to the casket for a final look, only to discover it was another man.

Turned out they'd heard wrong. Their friend, Ted Johnson, they were happy to learn, is alive and well.


June 12, 1959, Gun THINGS ARE clearly out of control in Nebraska. Betty Guthrie, of Hermosa Beach, received a letter from he 10-year-old grandniece there stating, "We have three ducks. One is a drake and there are two ganders. One will soon have baby ducks."


THE OTHER DAY Buck Hurst of the CBS sales department drove out to the airport to pick up an adman friend arriving from New York. It was obvious at a glance that his friend had a hangover and Buck said, "Gee, you look terrible, your eyes are all bloodshot."

His friend groaned, "You ought to see them from in here."


When lovely woman stoops to folly,
And finds too late that men betray,
She goes to court and wins by golly,
And makes them pay and pay and pay.

-- G.C. McHose


1959_0612_yacht IT'S REPORT card time and, as always, many faltering students fear the worst. Thus a mother appeared at a high school the other day and asked to speak to a teacher named Wolf to learn why he intended to flunk junior. There was no Wolf on the faculty and, at length, someone checkedjunior's program and found ma was confused. She wanted to speak to Mr. Lyon. Which did not endear her to the staff.


EVERY TIME the name Caskie Stinnett appears in print people ask, "Are you kidding? Is there really someone with the name?" There certainly is. He was in town the other day. He's tall, distinguished looking, addicted to bow ties and unpredictable, wildly humorous flights of fancy written and spoken.

Among other things he writes a monthly booklet for Holiday magazine. In the current number he puts his wide readership on notice of a nasty situation in the East. One issue of Variety, he points out, had 33 news stories dealing with censorship in entertainment. And twice in one week workmen went aloft to paint more clothes on a lady advertising "The NakedMaja."

Furthermore, customs officials are questioning the "seriousness" of persons wishing copies of Henry Miller's naughty opus. "The Tropic of Capricorn."

But the big thing was the raid on Philadelphia coffeehouses suspected of being hangouts, as the police put it, of "intellectuals and other shady characters." This is calculated to send a shiver of apprehension along Sunset Strip.


SOMEONE LEFT the engine running in a late model Chevrolet parked at Marineland the other night and a deputy sheriff tried to unlock the door to turn off the ignition. When he couldn't, he lifted the hood. However, he decided against pulling a wire or tampering on the grounds that the owner might object. So he let it run.Photog Bob Martin, standing nearby observed, "Maybe ought to shoot it. That would kill the engine."


AT RANDOM -- Dick Nash reports there's a horse racing around Chicago named Rickover, by Crafty Admiral ... Kardko, a greeting card firm started a year ago by Rolin Binser, 19, and his brother Vaughn, 24, of Sherman Oaks, has one with a drawing of an old geezer captioned, "Don't get all choked up over this Father's Day card." And inside the fold, "It only cost a dime" ... JoeKrengel's description of a glutton: an eatnik.

Paul V. Coates -- Confidential File, June 12, 1959


Confidential File

As Humans Manage to Be Very Inhuman

Paul CoatesOn the first day of June, Robert Greer, 79, received his old age pension check. It came in the mail, as always, to his small apartment at 920 W. 11th St. It was for $106.

He folded it, put it in his pocket and walked to the neighborhood supermarket. Mr. Greer walks slowly. He uses a cane.

At the market, the old man cashed his check and purchased $10 worth of groceries -- enough to last him a week or 10 days.

On his way home, he rested a couple of times with his load of bags. Each time, he'd stoop over painfully to pick them up again. Mr. Greer used to be a handy man but he isn't so handy anymore.

On arriving at his first floor apartment he put his groceries away.

Then he walked over to the landlady's apartment, counted out $40 for the month's rent and stuffed the remaining bills back into his coin purse. And he returned the purse to his hip pocket.

He went back to his room.

June 12, 1959, Mirror Cover No sooner had he closed the door than another man appeared in the hallway. The man was short, thin, about 30 and wearing a dark suit. He was a stranger.

The stranger approached another tenant who was passing by in the corridor, "Which is the old man's room?" he asked.

"You mean Mr. Greer?" she said. "Apartment 106."

Mr. Greer's apartment number is the same as the amount on his monthly check.

The stranger went to Mr. Greer's door, knocked, and was invited in.

"I'm a surgeon at General Hospital," the man said. "I can see where you need some attention."

"I've been there three or four times," Mr. Greer told him. "My knees, my legs -- they're pretty weak."

The visitor explained that he lived in the neighborhood about four blocks away.

June 12, 1959, Coed Rape "I know a lot of old folks around here," he said. "It's a shame the way people nowadays neglect their old folks."

Then he continued: "Take yourself, for example. You'd feel a lot better if some of your neighbors took the time every day to give you a rubdown."

Mr. Greer answered that he was proud of his neighbors. They were fine people. They helped him a lot.

"Would you mind," the visitor continued, "if I took a look at your back?"

The man gasped. "Spots! You've got spots!"

He ordered Mr. Greer to lie down on the bed on his stomach. Then, with gentle but firm hands, he began massaging the old man's shoulders and back. For 30 minutes he massaged.

"Feel better?" he asked finally.

"Much better," answered Mr. Greer. "It was very kind of you."

"What you really need," continued the man, "is some heat on those spots. I've got a heat lamp in the car, if you'd like me to get it."

"I certainly don't want to put you  to any more bother," replied Mr. Greer.

"No bother," said the man. "You just wait here and relax. I'll be right back."

He walked out the door.

Of course he didn't return, he wasn't a doctor.

We Sympathize, Mr. Greer

And, of course, when Mr. Greer became suspicious, about 20 minutes later, and removed his coin purse from his pants pocket, it was empty.

The "rubdown" is an old, old con game.

Undoubtedly, it ranks with the most vicious of them all. Because always its victims are kindly and trusting old people who aren't in very good shape, either physically or financially.

People like Mr. Greer.

A Kinder, Simpler Time Dept.: Your Health

Jan. 12, 1936, Irene Rich

June 12, 1936: Irene Rich is over 40 but weighs what she did at 16.


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