The Mystery of the Vanishing Cash

November 29, 1947
Los Angeles

Bertha Bremley, 5809 Blackstone, Bellflower, is baffled. It was less than two blocks from the clothing shop at 529 S. Broadway to the bank, she remembers nothing unusual happening during her walk, and yet when she arrived she no longer was holding the money bag containing $1000 in checks and $2155 cash which she intended to deposit.

That is one smooth pickpocket! Downtown strollers beware.

529 South Broadway To-day

The 1928 Schulte United building has been downgraded to a “hut.” A shoe hut, no less.

Downtown strollers beware, indeed. Vanishing money is endemic to the area. It’s rife with grifters and dips parting citizens from their geetus. Half a block down from Schulte I espied this collection of folk.

And what were they entranced by? Why it’s that old street con, the shell game!

And Mr. Flimmflam-man had no lack of marks today. The Deep Pinch, the V-Grip, Side Steal, Inside Shift and Side Load; sharpie had it down when spieling the nuts.

There are times I wish I’d been sober during my high school Spanish classes; woulda loved to glom said spiel, which had that unmistakable rhythm of Three Card Monte patter.

The Ballad of Homer and the Washboard

November 28, 1947
Los Angeles

In sentencing ex-con Homer Stone, 45, to a stint of one to ten years in San Quentin, Judge Clement D. Nye didn’t praise Stone for pleading guilty and saving the state time and money, no. Rather, he rode the man who admits he beat his mother with a washboard after she accused him of being drunk.

“She called me a bad name, your honor,” whined Homer. “I don’t think she called you nearly enough,” said the Judge. “If I had been there I’m sure I would have called you exactly what she did.” Whereupon, one assumes, Homer would have beat Judge Nye with a washboard, so it’s just as well he wasn’t. The Stone home: 339 W. 46th Street.

Recommended listening: “Washboard” by the magnificent, mysteriously under-rated Florida garage band The Nightcrawlers.

339 West 46th, To-day

Perhaps Homer was just trying to-clean-her?

With a little more effort, he could have been dubbed the “Washerboard Killer.”

Nice house, though. No stucco, no enclosed porch…nice fishscale shingle in the gable…and that’s some bold fascia over those deep sofits. Dig the side lights at the door.

The perfect place to come back to after tying one on. And then mother pulls her uppity “J’Accuse!” routine. He probably went out of his way to let her live there with him. The ungrateful wretch. Uh, oh. Nice double-hung windows.

Low Visibility

November 27, 1947
Los Angeles

Driving in heavy fog last night, Chief Petty Officer Lavern J. Ringle, USN, veered off the road at Crenshaw and Manhattan Beach Boulevards and struck a eucalyptus tree. The collision fatally injured Ringle’s 15-month-old daughter Cecelia Ann and left her mother Mae Amy in serious condition. Also slightly injured were Roger Ringle, 6, and his friend Ronald Taber, 1o. The Ringles reside at 920 Silva Street, Long Beach.

Crippled Lad Routs Would-Be Kidnapper

November 25, 1947
Los Angeles

16-year-old William Brooks Tissue was minding a used car lot for the owner when William F. Anserson, 25, asked Billy to show him what one of the cars could do. Once they were moving, Anderson produced a pistol and demanded the boy keep driving east. At 76th Street and Atlantic Ave., the brave youth ran the car up onto a curb and lunged for Anderson’s pistol. Anderson ran, and was quickly arrested on a charge of kidnapping and robbery by two police officers who witnessed the incident.

Brave Billy Tissue weighs just 110 pounds and wears steel leg braces following an attack of infantile paralysis in 1938.

Girls Get Gassed

November 24, 1947

Clunk! Gas leaking from a new heater inside a garment plant at 104th Street and Grevillea Ave. poisoned five women, who keeled over their electric sewing machines around 10:30 this morning and had to be carried outside by their woozy co-workers. The women were given oxygen by a Fire Department rescue team, with the most seriously afflicted taken to Harbor General for observation.

After the firemen left, the remaining women returned to work, and soon the vacant lot beside the plant was filled with another round of queasy, disoriented gals. The firemen came back to treat these new victims.

Later still, the women who had been helping the others finally succumbed after eating their gas-soaked lunches, and the firemen came out for a third time. Only then were plant owners Mrs. amd Mrs. Cecil Webb told to shut up shop and fix the damn heater before allowing anyone back to work.

Westside Brats Run Amok, spankings at 11

November 23, 1947
West Hollywood

Two college boys out for a lark on a Saturday night. A nightclub. A cigarette machine. Trouble.

Patrick Cantillon, 20, 11610 Bellagio Road, Bel-Air and his pal, 22-year-old Martin F. Davis of 442 S. Bedford Drive, Beverly Hills, were inside Tabu of Hollywood, 7290 Sunset Blvd., when they became enamored of the cigarette machine, and sought to remove it from the premises.

Co-owner Leo Pavich, 1002 California Street, objected and bloodied the lads, who retreated with vengeance on their minds. Soon a bottle was hurled from a passing car, breaking one of Tabu’s front windows and nearly striking several patrons. It was war.

The boys returned, bearing bricks. Pavich drew his gun and fired through their windshield, there was a scamble on the sidewalk, one of the youths took off running and Pavich shot at his fleeing figure. At this point several Tabu patrons had joined the melee. What fun!

No one was seriously hurt. Cantillon and Davis received emergency treatment for minor injuries, as did Tabu patron Larry Borgan. Then the would-be cigarette bandits were booked into the Hollywood Jail. We presume their mommies and daddies are not amused.