I Did Not Have Sex with that Woman!

Jacobson Headline

August 6, 1927
Los Angeles

Councilman Carl I. Jacobson was arrested in a morals raid at 4372 Beagle Street in the company of a woman who said her name was Mrs. Councilman JacobsonHazel Ferguson, but who later admitted her real name was Mrs. Callie Grimes.

The married councilman insisted that he was framed and that the raid was the underworld’s retaliation for his much publicized crusade against vice in the city.

Jacobson, who lives in a small bungalow at 3014 Terry Place with his wife of thirty years, told cops that he had called upon Mrs. Ferguson to discuss a matter of street assessments with her. He said Mrs. Ferguson had telephoned him at his home and asked him to look over her property to see if it was worth paying the assessments.

When he arrived for their meeting Mrs. Ferguson poured two cocktails, and then moments later all of the lights in the house went out. It was then that police announced themselves and placed Councilman Jacobson and Mrs. Ferguson/Grimes under arrest.

The four arresting officers, Captains of Detectives Wallis and Williams, and Detectives Lucas and Raymond related a version of events substantively different from Jacobson’s account. They stated that they went to the Beagle street house, watched through a window and then observing what they felt constituted criminal behavior, crashed down a door to arrest the couple on morals violations. The arrest of Jacobson and Grimes begs the question: why were four high-ranking LAPD officers creeping around in the shrubbery with their noses pressed to a window like four Peeping Toms?

The case against Jacobsen would drag on. Jacobson would be tried twice on morals charges. In the first trial the jury would vote 9 to 3 for acquittal; in the second trial the jury would be evenly divided and the DA would decide against trying him for a third time. Mrs. Callie Grimes would confess to her part in the frame-up, and then recant. Grimes along with the four officers who conducted the raid would be tried for conspiracy, and the charges against them would be dismissed in 1929.

One of the detectives, Harry Raymond, would leave the LAPD and become a private investigator. He’d turn up again in the news as the victim of an attempted assassination by car bomb, in a 1938 corruption scandal involving Los Angeles Mayor Frank Shaw, members of his administration, and the LAPD.

What Next…a Garter Belt and Stockings?

 

Rubber Heels

August 6, 1927Horse Heels
Los Angeles

 

You’ve been tossing and turning all night, when finally in the wee hours of the morning you drift off to sleep – only to be awakened minutes later by the clatter of horse’s hooves on the pavement outside of your bedroom window. How many times has this happened to you? Well, if you are lucky enough to live along the route of Crescent Creamery your uninterrupted slumber is now assured. The dairy is providing their 600 horses with heels made of corrugated rubber which they say is good for the horse, and better for the insomniac.

“Good night, sweet Prince,
And flights of angels sing thee to thy rest”
– Act 1: Scene 2 Hamlet, Shakespeare

Kneel Before Me… Peasant!

Anna Anderson

August 6, 1927
La-La Land

"A lie told often enough becomes truth." –Vladimir Lenin

On July 17, 1918, Bolshevik authorities, led by Yakov Yurovsky, shot Nicholas II and his immediate family in the cellar of the Ipatiev House in Ekaterinburg, Russia. Since then rumors have circulated that one of the Romanovs, Grand Duchess Anastasia, had miraculously survived assassination.

The woman in the photograph on the right is Anastasia Manahan aka Anna Anderson. Anna was a patient in a mental hospital in Dalldorf, Germany until another patient said that she recognized her as royalty. Anna would spend the next 57 years of her life claiming to be Anastasia. Neither her supporters nor her detractors would be able to substantiate Anna’s claim during her lifetime. Several years following her death, DNA tests would finally prove that she was not a Romanov.

The Little Klansman That Couldn’t

August 4, 1927ousterdamage
San Pedro

That Ernest M. Branson just couldn’t leave well enough alone.  He was a member in good standing of San Pedro 51, Knights of the Ku Klux Klan, and all was fine and hunky-dory, until he started stirring the pot with his talk.  So from under the sheet came a big boot, and out went Ernest; now, Ernest says he was libeled in the written order that banished him from the Kluxers.

What was it ever did Ernest say?  To hell with the flag?  Hooray for Hebrews?  Eucharist is yummy?  Thomas Jefferson got it on with Sally Hemmings?

No, all he did was stir up some internal dissension inside the Klan, which resulted in his ouster (maybe he sided with Madge over DC.)  That’s gotta be the worst libel of all—accused of making mishegas in the klavern!

So now Ernest has filed a $25,000 ($275,749 USD2006) libel suit against none other than Exalted Cyclops Karl K. Keller.  

(Yes, Karl K. Keller.  I bet his real name was Herman Flork.)

Circus freaks and balloon walks

August 3, 1927

On this slow news day, readers of the Los Angeles Times were treated to a pair of interesting stories on page A8. The first was a five paragraph reprint from American Druggist magazine introducing Ben D. Rinehart, acting pharmacist for the Ringling-Barnum & Bailey circus. You probably never stopped to think that a 600-pound fat lady might need three times the normal dose for a sleeping potion to work, but Ben has. He’s also proud of his rickets treatments for elephants, who consume quarts of cod liver oil and are wrapped in bandages the size of bedsheets.

More whimsical still was the piece entitled "How To Walk On Air." How, you ask? Why, via that new and enervating sport of Balloon Jumping, as proposed in The Forum Magazine. Just grab hold of a big balloon with just slightly less lift than your weight and LEAP, over buildings, lakes and elephants with rickets! Mr. (wait for it) Frederick S. Hoppin is convinced that we’re at the outset of an age of shoulder-mounted gaspacks when everyone will have the ability to gambol about bearing just a portion of their natural weight. "Our whole present-day world would be turned upside-down. Legislatures will be busily engaged in passing laws prohibiting people from leaving the earth too freely, or rules for the right of way up and down and sideways, or regulations against landing on the head of a fellow citizen or planting a foot on any part of him as you rise. And then there would be the new rule of etiquette: should you pass over or around a lady?"

All right, class: discuss. 

A Beautiful Friendship

 August 2, 1927
 
junemathis
When Rudolph Valentino died without a burial plot, one of Hollywood’s most powerful women, screenwriter June Mathis, stepped up and volunteered space in her own crypt in the Cathedral Mausoleum at what is now the Hollywood Forever Cemetery.

Mathis had "discovered" Valentino, literally plucking him from a chorus of extras to star in her Four Horsemen of the Apocalypse in 1921.  The two adored one another, though their friendship suffered a rocky period after Valentino was critical of one of her treatments.  However, the good friends were reconciled at the Los Angeles premiere of The Son of the Shiek, shortly before Valentino’s death in August 1926.

As Valentino’s body was interred, Mathis supposedly said, "Rudy, you can stay there until they place me in it."

Sadly, this turned out to be a little sooner than anyone had expected.  While attending a play in New York City on July 26, 1927, Mathis suffered a fatal heart attack.  Her body was transported by train to Los Angeles, just as Valentino’s had been less than a year before.

 
Today, Valentino’s former agent announced that his body would be moved from Mathis’s crypt and into the space reserved for her husband, Italian cinematographer Silvano Balboni.  Mathis’s body was laid to rest on August 5, and rests there next to Valentino to this day.
 
Harry Carr wrote of Mathis in his Lancer column, "June Mathis, who died suddenly in a New York theatre, had one of the finest motion picture minds ever connected with the industry.  Perhaps it is just as important that she was one of the kindest, most generous, most thoughtful women who ever breathed."