A Fish Story

May 8, 1907
Long Beach

While fishing off the Long Beach pier, Harry Hamilton, a visitor from Prince Edwards Island, Nova Scotia, made a spectacular catch, which required a hard and frenzied battle to drag the creature from its briny home up to pier-level. It was only after subduing the finny fellow that Hamilton realized that his valuables–$325 in cash, a ticket home, and a diamond ring–were no longer in his pocket.

It is unknown if his property fell into the water while Hamilton was preoccupied with his catch, or were they snatched by a pickpocket, but the sad fact remains that Harry Hamilton, who was this morning well equipped to enjoy his stay in Fiesta-time Los Angeles, now possesses just his luggage and a large fish. Anyone who wishes to buy said fish may contact Hamilton c/o this website.

The Packing Padrone

May 8, 1907
Long Beach

The Padrone must run a tight ship. Juan Acosta is a Padrone. He has a shotgun.

Just east of the city, at the Bixby Ranch, he discharged four men from one of his tents for reasons unmentioned. These gentlemen returned before daybreak and one of them, a Juan Diaz, stabbed a sleeping Acosta through the arm, and then stuck him in the breastbone and forehead. Acosta still managed to grab his shotgun and unload onto Diaz’ abdomen at point-blank range.

El Padrone’s brother managed to tackle and hogtie another assailant, one Luciano Morro, who was found bound at the entrance of the tent by local Marshals. The two others, Mssrs. Bartello and Rodriquez, now have warrants out for their arrest.

Padrone Acosta is expected to pull through. The outlook for Diaz is not as rosy.

I Love a Parade…You Fools!

May 8, 1907
Los AngelesOne expects Fiesta-time to be fortuitous to the light-fingered gentry (e.g., V. S. Hawley had a $30 gold watch taken from his pocket; E. E. Leech was relieved of $7 while standing on Main Street watching the floats) but when goods are taken by the wagon-load, then we’ve got serious business afoot. No fewer than nine major break-ins were reported last night. The thieves in each case were evidently experienced operators, who feared little for being molested during their duties, especially given as in every instance the intrusion coincided with the Fiesta parades between 8pm and 12am. Further, the thieves had discriminating taste: at the home of S. H. Garrett, where entrance was gained through a rear window, purloiners went through the wardrobe and selected the finest of silk dresses and evening clothes to purloin; they even absconded with the better bedclothes. At 2629 Orchard Avenue, W. W. Taylor lost a gold watch, chain, necklace, and locket; at the same address Mrs. William Fleckenstein was relieved of her opera glasses and solid silver flask. Most astonishing was the haul from Mr. Nelson Douglas of 2500 Vermont Avenue, wherein unpacked suitcases belonging to his Shriner guests were lifted in toto. Watches, jewelry, money in the children’s bank; all are in the hands of Los Angeles’ dark and shadowy underworld this day.

They Ain’t Buying It

May 7, 1907
Los Angeles

Jesse C. Cowd, of 187 South Broadway, told cops he was shot in the groin in the rear toilet-room of the Southern Hotel saloon at Market and Main…when an unidentified stranger dropped a revolver and it discharged on the floor. Cops don’t buy the story–the trail of blood leads from the cigar stand in front of the saloon where there had been a quarrel over a dice game. Despite there having been a large crowd at the time, there were, of course, no witnesses.

And the Dog Came Back

May 7, 1907

Constable Edwards has a bulldog that his children have been playing with for two years. A neighbor’s child was over a few days ago and was bitten on the arm. Instead of taking responsibility for raising a beastly child that doesn’t know not to torment dogs, the evil neighbor requested of City officials that the dog be killed.

The City Marshall went to the home of Mr. Edwards and rightfully requested that Mr. Edwards be more careful with the dog in the future, while the neighbor still held that the dog be killed. The Marshall departed but the neighbor kept at it, and dog owner Edwards finally consented to have the dog murdered.

The neighbor walked the dog down the Fullerton railroad tracks and shot him. The dog rolled over and after a few minutes stopped kicking. The neighbor returned to town and reported that the deed was done.

That night in the Edwards home the mantle clock ticked in earnest in its dreadful march to midnight when, moments before it chimed twelve, there was a scraping at the door. Mrs. Edwards opened it. “Is this the ghost of the dog or am I dreaming,” she said to herself. Mr. Edwards rubbed his eyes and nearly toppled over as he joined his shocked wife in watching the dog crawl toward them–coming slowly forward–until as the dog shook his head a ball fell from his jaw. Mr. Edwards says the dog will live. Hopefully it will finish off that family next door.

Of Human Bondage

May 5, 1907
Los AngelesMary Hawn is by all accounts an attractive twentysomething, average enough perhaps, save that she has a Superior Court case today. And she was bound and gagged in her bed by an intruder last night.”Being very much exhausted and having retired rather late, I fell into a sound sleep. When I can next remember I seemed to feel someone’s breath above my head. My mouth hurt me and someone was cramming it full. I opened my eyes and tried to move. Then I was frozen with horror. A masked man was leaning over me and was finishing the work of gagging me.

“Oh, it seemed for such a long time he bent foreward, gazing into my face. Then I tried to move and found my hands and feet bound together. After what seemed to me a long time, the man raised up and walked to the bureau. He searched it and then returned, he whispered that he would kill me if he did not find my papers before long. After making other threats at my life, he left.”

This occurred in her room at the Golden West Hotel, 412 South Main Street. Which Miss Hawn owns; she purchased the hotel from a Covina man in May of 1906. Little is known about their relationship, except that a) the hotelman died a short time later, and b) he left his life insurance to Miss Hawn, some one thousand dollars.

And the Superior Court case? The mysterious man’s widow is suing Miss Hawn for the insurance money. It is papers relating to this case that Miss Hawn alleges her visitor was after.

In a Lonely Place

May 4, 1907

Jesus Chavez was traveling from his home in El Monte to Colton, where he intended to celebrate Cinco de Mayo. During the trip Chavez was under the intoxicating influence of liquor continuously, and for reasons unknown shot and killed one Veranze Mansibai on a lonely road near West Riverside.

Chavez went into hiding, but Sheriff Wilson and Under Sheriff Evans eventually encountered his spring wagon. A little further on they found the white and bay horses he was driving. And a little after that, the tiny cabin in which Chavez was tightly holed up, continuing his alcoholiday.

There is little hope Chavez will be able to answer to the charges before the effects of his spree wear off.

P.E.O. Sisters Boosted on Budlong

May 1, 1907
Los AngelesThe Sisters of the P.E.O. are a mysterious bunch. So much so that no-one knows what the initials P.E.O. stand for. What began as an Iowa sorority has morphed into a powerhouse of sisterhood, its guarded secrets forever hidden from the world of men.More mysterious, however, was the daylight robbery at the P.E.O. meeting held in the home of Sister Frederika Friend, 2302 Budlong Avenue. Sister Friend had made elaborate arrangements for a delightful afternoon, and as the Sisters talked business, and the cateress and coffee-colored assistants prepared the luncheon, Mrs. W. H. Faust of 2869 West Eighth Street strode upstairs to the dressing-room on the second floor where the ladies had left their wraps and pocketbooks. Mrs. Faust opened her clutch to get money with which to pay her dues, and found twenty dollars missing. She appeared white-faced at the top of the stairs, and in trembling tones exclaimed “Sisters! We have been robbed!”

The sisters rushed upstairs and drove their hands into their pocketbooks and indeed, most every sister had lost some of their cash contents. Police were summoned but they could find no evidence of a “second-story man,” and further determined that no-one could have gained ingress through the rear door without detection. At this information, Sister Friend reportedly broke down and cried. She was joined by others. A search was made of the house (and of the aforementioned cateress and “coffee-colored assistants,” we assume) to no avail. With this, the patrolmen departed, and the sisters sat down and cried some more, after which ice cream was served.

Of course, no suspicion attaches to any member of the Sisterhood.

And there the mystery rests.

New Heroine, Old Story

May 1, 1907
Los Angeles

“I love him, judge, and I just can’t keep away from him,” said winsome Grace Evans as tears coursed down her cheek. But she promised Justice Austin never to go near him again.

She was a simple country girl, caught in the swirl of gay city life, when she was led into a career of sin by one Alfred Medina. He taught her innocent twenty year-old mouth the ways of wrapping around an opium pipe. She stole twenty-three dollars to feed her habit, was popped for grand larceny, and spent a week in jail before being hauled before Austin. It was the contention of Deputy District Attorney Pearson that she had been more sinned against that had sinned, urging that she should escape sentence if she returned to the country to begin life anew.

And so it came to be that she promised never to see Medina again. But a young girl in the throes of having her innocence destroyed can scarcely be believed, though in time perhaps she may be redeemed.

In other Court news, Jesus “Bar Wielder” Suega was convicted of disturbing the peace and sentenced to twenty-five days in the City Jail. Suega had run amok in the Llewellyn Iron Works earlier in the week, attacking the workmen with a heavy piece of iron and driving all employees en masse from the establishment.

Give Them What They Ask

April 28, 1907
Los Angeles
That is the call of the tamalera, they known to those of us who reside in the Hispanic neighborhoods, a siren song that wakes us to church, to industry, but mostly to meat and masa in husk.  But treat these folk well; James Couts, a sash and door worker playing a game of ball at 38th and Santa Fe yesterday, was knifed repeatedly by a tamale peddler after some trouble about payment.
In other news, the rash of burglaries continues to increase as Fiesta nears.  A. C. Nagle was brutally assaulted, and robbed of his diamond ring and Elks pin, at Ocean Park last night.  Rings were stolen from 936 East 31st, and silverware and clothing from 210 East 16th
Nearer town, in a restaurant on North Main Street, James Selagar and Pedro Fierros fought a furious knife duel, sending both, after their arrest, to Receiving Hospital for treatment.