The Daily Mirror

Larry Harnisch reflects on Los Angeles history

Category: June 21, 2009 - June 27, 2009

| The Daily Mirror Home |

Man Builds Model of 1881 Los Angeles

Nov. 8, 1931, Model of Los Angeles

Nov. 8, 1931: For its 50th anniversary, The Times re-creates Los Angeles as it was in 1881. Above, Robert H. Sexton Jr. displays an elaborate model of the city in 1881, measuring about 8 feet by 5 feet. The model was put on exhibit at the Los Angeles Public Library and was to be available to schools and colleges for educational purposes. I wonder what became of it.

Nov. 8, 1931, Model of 1881 Los Angeles

Nov. 15, 1931, Re-Creation of 1881 Los Angeles

Nov. 15, 1931: Part 1 of a story about Los Angeles in 1881. Note especially a photo of the Baker Block showing one of the early carbon arc light towers.

Nov. 22, 1931, Model of 1881 Los Angeles

Part 2 of a story about Los Angeles in 1881. Notice that the photo of the Plaza church shows graves out in front.

Nuestro Pueblo: Point Fermin

June 26, 1939, Nuestro Pueblo

June 26, 1939: Nuestro Pueblo visits Point Fermin.

Police Raid Colored Republican Club

Dec. 15, 1887, Fatal Fire  

Dec. 15, 1887: Effie Smith, a prostitute on Los Angeles Street, burns to death. She took a dose of morphine and lapsed into unconsciousness after lighting a cigarette. I found this item while trying to determine the location of the Colored Republican Club in the story below.

June 26, 1899, Club Raided

June 26, 1899: Police raid the Colored Republican Club on Los Angeles Street. At the trial, police officers described the sordid nature of the club but were unable to say precisely when the incidents occurred.


Women Gets Divorce From Missing Husband

June 26, 1889, Architects

June 26, 1889: Reynolds Bros. Architects.
June 26, 1889, Divorce

Josephine Abel gets a divorce from her husband, Abel.

Found on EBay -- Oviatt's

Oviatt's Wingtips

This size 11 pair of wingtips from Oviatt's has been listed on EBay. Bidding starts at $10.

Matt Weinstock, June 25, 1959

June 25, 1959, Never Touched Me

"Never Touched Me."

Happy Ending

Matt Weinstock Roy Huerta got up at 2 a.m. yesterday, drove to Tijuana and brought his wife Manuela and their six children back to L.A. to stay, thereby ending a frustrating, 10-year, across-the-border separation.

Roy and Manuela were married here in 1947. One day in 1949 they took a trip to Tijuana. At the border on the way back they were asked the usual questions.

Roy had no trouble. He was born in Johnstown, Pa., and served three years in the Army. Manuela, born in Zacatecas, Mex., panicked and gave conflicting answers. She was detained and accused of entering this country illegally.

Later, she compounded her apparent guilt by ignoring, out of fear, a summons to a hearing. She was convicted of perjury and deported under the McCarran Act.

June 25, 1959, Alfred Hitchcock FOR THE LAST 10 YEARS Roy, 39, a cook at the DuZeff's restaurant on Sunset Blvd., has made a pilgrimage each weekend to Tijuana to be with his family. He took along groceries, clothes, and gifts for the children, the sixth of which was born there.

The case was first reported here in 1957. Ridley Billick, manager of the Spring St. restaurant in which Roy then worked, was trying to correct the injustice.

About two months later a reader, Fay C. Rosenblatt, inquired about the case, which disturbed her. A phone call to Roy disclosed that the situation was unchanged, which was reported here.

But Francis H. Ohswaldt, deputy district director of immigration, saw the column and phoned. It appeared to him that Roy and Manuela could be reunited under Public Law 85-316, in effect since 1957, if they could meet the conditions, which apparently they could. The sad thing, he said, was that they didn't know they were eligible for this relief for more than a year.

Ohswaldt was put in touch with Roy, and the wheels began to turn. There was the interminable chore of filing applications with the American consul in Tijuana and assembling of birth and other records. Meanwhile, immigration officials at SanYsidro were alerted to expedite the case.

For several weeks all the necessary papers were on file except one from Zacatecas police department, giving proof that Manuela had no police record. Last week the letter came through.

Then came the processing of the records by the immigration people to satisfy the requirements of the law. It was just another case among scores of similar cases, but by this time they were taking a benevolent interest. Today the happy, grateful Huerta family is staying with friends, meanwhile house hunting.


THE PUZZLING suicide of George Reeves has friends recalling tales about him.

An actor who worked with him in several installments of the "Superman" series remembered that Reeves was always complaining that his feet were killing him because of an inevitable scene in each show.

June 25, 1959, Abby He didn't mind the shot in which he, as Clark Kent, changed into his Superman suit and dove out of a window to fly to someone's rescue. It was the one where he landed that bothered him. He'd have to stand on a ladder out of camera range and jump from 4 of 5 ft. If he landed sideways or with his costume out of place, there would be retakes. By the end of the day he was an unhappy man.


AL CAPP'S comment in Newsweek about Hollywood: "A welcome here starts hotter and gets colder faster than anything anywhere in the world." Come, come, Al, we always say nice things about Dogpatch.


PEOPLE ARE always ribbing colleague Paul Coates because of his steely, unsmiling appearance on TV. Bob Crane of KNX told of a gal, a regular Coates watcher, who put a Venetian blind on her set and closes it when his program comes on. She gets ready for bed about that time and has the feeling he's watching her.


AROUND TOWN -- A girl of about 7 came up to a guard at Pacific Ocean Park and said, "I'd like to report a lost mother and father. They shouldn't be too hard to find -- they're together."

Michael Jackson -- Master of Marketing

Jan. 15, 1984, Michael Jackson Thriller

Jan. 15, 1984: Michael Jackson as a master of marketing.

"Jackson is assuredly not the innocent he's usually presumed to be."
Jan. 15, 1984, Michael Jackson Thriller

Michael Jackson in Victory Tour

July 9, 1984, Michael Jackson Victory Tour

July 9, 1984: Michael Jackson's Victory Tour:

"Michael Jackson is passively aggressive, childishly macho, asexually passionate, dreamily realistic ... The 25-year-old pop sensation is the living, dancing embodiment of an oxymoron ... a figure of speech in which opposite or contradictory ideas are combined."
July 9, 1984, Michael Jackson Victory Tour

Paul V. Coates -- Confidential File, June 25, 1959

June 25, 1959, Starkweather Executed

Confidential File

A New Instrument for Crime Detection

Paul CoatesA man without a camera took my picture yesterday.

It's not a particularly flattering one, but it wasn't intended to be.

Los Angeles County Sheriff's Deputy C. E. MacElroy, who took it, had motives other than flattery in mind.

By using standard transparent films which he carried in a little gray box -- each bearing a coded facial characteristic -- he wanted to produce a full-face likeness.

He wanted to show me that his revolutionary "Identi-Kit," now being put into use by our Sheriff's Department, could soon become the greatest practical aid to identification of wanted criminals since the present system of fingerprinting was developed.

June 25, 1959, Coates Mug MacElroy is currently one of five deputies equipped with the kit. In 40 hours a deputy can master it.

And I'm more than slightly convinced, after watching the ease with which MacElroy operated it, that Identi-Kit may someday become as integral to law enforcement as fingerprinting, ballistics tests and shiny badges.

 I hope so. For a lot of reasons, I do. But that, I'll get to later.

Basically, this is what the kit consists of:

It has 500 4 1/2 X 5 1/2-in. transparent slides. Each slide bears a facial characteristic, or accessory. Each is coded by letter and number.

Among the 12 categories of characteristics are ears, eyes, mouth, nose, chin lines, eyebrows, lips, age lines. I, for example, have a C-28 chin and an N-14 nose.

June 25, 1959, Starkweather When a deputy arrives at the scene of a crime with his Identi-Kit he could begin immediately interrogating a witness about the suspect's description.

From the witness' recollection of the criminal's facial appearance the deputy can quickly create a picture of the suspect, merely by stacking the right chin, hairline, eyes, etc. into place.

 Then, with the aid of the witness, he tackles the overall face, changing characteristics as the witness recommends. Average time for the procedure is 20 minutes.

Right away, when the witness is satisfied with the likeness, the deputy can radio in the letters and numbers of the 12 overlaying transparencies to his station, and immediately these can be broadcast to every patrol car with an Identi-Kit.

With fantastic savings of both money and time, each car has a "mug shot" to work with.

The possibilities of establishing a central file of facial characteristics similar to today's fingerprint files are equally fantastic.

But what also appeals to me about the new system -- which, incidentally, was originated by Hugh C. McDonald, chief of L.A. County's sheriff's civil division, and developed with McDonald's technical assistant by Townsend Engineered Products, Ind., of Santa Ana -- is that it permits a witness to put down in a picture his visual memory of a suspect without being influenced by mug books.

Man Who Should Be Free

Too often a witness' judgment is colored by studying mug shot after mug shot of persons he knows to have criminal records. Too often he confuses features and faces he's just seen in the mug books with the face of an actual criminal.

It scares me to think of how many people are doing time today because of faulty eyewitness identification.

But it encourages me to know that the Sheriff's Department is doing something to increase the odds in favor of the innocent suspect.

A Kinder, Simpler Time Dept: Your Music

June 25, 1973, Phil Ochs  

June 25, 1973: Phil Ochs (1940 - 1976) performs at the Ash Grove, 8162 Melrose, (1958 - 1973).

Dodgers Star Banks on His Education

Aug. 19, 1961, Wally Moon
Photograph by Rothschild / KTTV

Aug. 19, 1961: Jerry Doggett, left, Wally Moon and Vin Scully.

July 26, 1960, Wally Moon
Photo by Joe Kennedy / L.A. Times
July 26, 1960: Wally Moon playing Texas Hold 'Em? No, it's just an innocent game of solitaire.

Wally Moon's home run made the difference in the Dodgers' 9-6 victory over the Phillies.

Moon became known for the home run during his years in Los Angeles. He was acquired to give the lineup some left-handed power and moving the fences in part of the Coliseum was seen as a boost for Moon and Duke Snider. But he became famous in L.A. for his "Moon shots' over the left-field screen.

He also had a reputation as a scholar of sorts. The Times' Jeane Hoffman profiled Moon a couple days after the home run, stressing his educational background. Moon held a master's degree in administrative education from Texas A&M. Probably wasn't a lot of players with master's degrees in 1959--wonder how many there are today.

"I look upon an education as an end to itself; it's a sort of insurance policy against the day when I don't get to round third as often or see that curve coming," Moon said. "Baseball life doesn't last long. Then I can go back to teaching and not have to worry about where my next decimal point is coming from!"

Moon hit .302 for the Dodgers in 1959, with 19 home runs and 11 triples.

--Keith Thursby

Grand Jury Vice Probe! Gilmore Field Expanded

June 25, 1949, Pistol

"Put That Pistol Down, Young Lady."

June 25, 1949, Football
June 25, 1949, Vice Squad

June 25, 1949, Vice

Keith's 1949 post on Gilmore Field has dropped us in the middle of an extremely complicated grand jury investigation of the Los Angeles Police Department.

To summarize: Officers James Parslow, Thomas C. Lindholm and Port A. Stevens were suspended by a police board that included future Chief William Parker for using excessive force during an arrest. The officers were partners of Sgt. Charles Stoker, a figure in the Brenda Allen scandal,  and they accused police officials of trying to undermine Chief C.B. Horrall to obtain control of vice in Los Angeles.

 June 25, 1949, Overell

This is quite a page: Louise Overell, acquitted of helping Bud Gollum kill her parents, plans to get married. Police search for leads in the Green Twig murder of Louise Springer, who was kidnapped while sitting in a car a few blocks from the Black Dahlia crime scene.
 June 25, 1949, Alcoholics

City and county officials look for ways to keep chronic alcoholics out of the legal system.
June 25, 1949, Joke

Episcopal humor!

June 25, 1949, Berman

Ludovico Muratori, on location for "God's Earth," is killed by fumes from Stromboli volcano.

June 25, 1949, Pistol Permit

Leah Ruth Chase says her husband, screenwriter Borden Chase, is having an affair with her daughter from a previous marriage. She wants a handgun permit -- and she wants her husband's gun permit revoked.

June 25, 1949, Burlesque

I'm amazed this got into The Times -- even as a one-column ad.

June 25, 1949, Gilmore Field

The postwar building boom reached the minor leagues.

The Hollywood Stars planned to transform Gilmore Field by turning bleacher seats into about 260 box seats and 1,000 grandstand seats. "We hope this will take a little pressure off the demand for box seats and reserved grandstand seats," said Oscar Reichow, the team's business manager.

The right-field fence also would be removed so about 4.000 bleacher seats could be added.

Here's a silent home movie showing the ballpark in 1957. Looks like the plans might have been altered or not completed.

--Keith Thursby


Recommended on Facebook


In Case You Missed It...

Recent Posts
The Daily Mirror Is Moving |  June 16, 2011, 2:42 am »
Movieland Mystery Photo |  June 11, 2011, 9:26 am »
Movieland Mystery Photo [Updated] |  June 11, 2011, 8:06 am »
Found on EBay 1909 Mayor's Race |  June 9, 2011, 2:33 pm »