The Historic Brick Streets and Curbs of NE LA

Nick Santangelo saw my post about the historic cobblestones exposed when Lincoln Heights was getting its roads repaved, and wanted to share photos of some of the brick streets and gutters in Highland Park and near Union Station. Some of these have already been covered over by insensitive city workers.

Nick says: The brick gutters on Avenues 41 and 45 (on North Figueroa) reminded me of Kim’s post. I have tried to get public works to stop paving over them as they are unique and historic but have not had any luck. I even sent some pics to the Highland Park Historical people but I never got a response. The new Homeboy Industries building near Phillipes sits next to a cobblestone street (Bruno, I think).

Sure, on a well travelled street it’s probably unreasonable to ask that archaic building materials bear the brunt of multi-ton SUVs… but can’t we somehow save the brick gutters in places where they’re still holding up so nicely?

Twin Celebrations


Feb.13, 1907
Los Angeles

An enormous masked ball for the city’s elite was staged on Mardi Gras at Kramer’s Studio and Dancing Academy, 1500 S. Figueroa.

Kramer’s Hall, as it was informally known.

The Times, in a rare bylined article—by Katherine Thompson—gives
an exhaustive account of decorations and costumes. Rather than list all the women’s outfits, I’ll only comment on them: Spanish senoritas, flower girls, cowboys and a couple of ladies dressed as Chinese girls, which seems a peculiar choice given the attitude toward the Chinese in Los Angeles at the time.

One woman dressed as “My Lady Nicotineâ€Â her gown decorated with what The Times estimated, perhaps in exaggeration, as a thousand cigar bands. Several others were dressed as “Night.â€Â

Costumes for the men included cowboys or vaqueros, a Spanish grandee, a French pastry cook and a cardinal.

The other celebration underway was the first anniversary of the Hotel Alexandria, which marked the occasion with a massive fireworks display.

“At 8 o’clock last night, several thousand dollars worth of fireworks were set off from the roof of the Alexandria,â€Â The Times says. “One particularly attractive piece pictured the great lobby of the building. During the evening a Hungarian quartette furnished music.â€Â

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All About the Weird West Adams Tour

WHAT: 1947project Weird West Adams Crime Bus Tour, Saturday 12/16/06, 11am-4pm. $47 cost includes snacks, beverages and five-hour luxury coach tour.
 
LOS ANGELES- Since January, the bloggers at 1947project have taken their Los Angeles crime history research on the road with their lively, mysterious and very popular Crime Bus tours. Past routes have explored the dark side of Pasadena, the secret history of downtown and the real story of the Black Dahlia case. In December, 1947project offers a new tour celebrating the Beverly Hills of the early 20th century, that grand swath of city just west of downtown: Weird West Adams.

On this five-hour tour, Crime Bus passengers will be treated to detailed descriptions of some of the most notorious, strange and fascinating forgotten tales from the past hundred years, each told at the scene of the crime. They’ll thrill to the carjacking horror of silent film starlet Myrtle Gonzalez, shiver as Dream Killer Otto Parzyjegla chops his newspaper publisher boss to pieces with the paper-cutting blade, shudder at the pickled poignancy of the murder-by-brandy of Benjamin Weber, marvel at the Krazy Kafitz family and their litany of murder-suicides, attempted husband slayings, Byzantine estate battles and mad bombings, then gag at terrible fate visited on kidnap victim Marion Parker by The Fox. There will be some celebrity sites along the route, including the death scenes of Motown soul sensation Marvin Gaye and 1920s star Angels baseball catcher Gus Sandberg.

And in a special treat for the holiday season, the Crime Bus will toast the Winter Solstice by visiting the city’s shortest street and remembering 2′ 11" Angelo Rossitto, the charismatic cult actor / newsstand operator ("Freaks," "Mad Max Beyond Thunderdome") who famously visited the spot in his teeny-tiny car on 12/21/37.  All this, plus a robbery by Pretty Boy Floyd, Prohibition-era houses transformed into secret distilleries, fumigations gone terribly wrong, mashers, bad marriages, rotten drivers, assorted weirdos and a mummified teenage cult priestess.

Upcoming Crime Bus Tours include the 60th Anniversary Real Black Dahlia (January 13, 2007).

Want to reserve a seat for West Adams or the Black Dahlia? Just email us with the number of spots you’d like.