Early Views of Glendale

(ca. 1880s)^ - Panoramic view from Griffith Park of the site of the later city of Glendale as it appeared sometime between the partition of the great San Rafael Rancho in 1870 and the founding of the town in the middle eighties. The Verdugo Hills and San Gabriel Mountains are seen in background.  



In 1884, residents gathered to form a townsite and chose the name "Glendale" (it was bounded by First Street (now Lexington Drive) on the north, Fifth Street (now Harvard Street) on the south, Central Avenue on the west, and the Childs Tract on the east). Residents to the southwest formed "Tropico" in 1887.

Glendale incorporated in 1906, and annexed Tropico 12 years later.




(1895)* - View showing the Glendale Hotel, shown here when it was a school for girls. It was located on what is now Broadway Avenue.  


Historical Notes

During the area's first little boom, the Hotel Glendale was built at a cost of $60,000 in 1887-1888. It was a grandiose structure, but it didn't even open! The boom busted too fast, and the hotel became a school (St. Hilda's Hall, School for Girls). It later became the Glendale Sanitarium until 1924 when the building was razed.*




(ca. 1910)** – View looking at the Glendale Sanitarium with the Verdugo Mountains in the background.  Title reads:  “Glendale Sanitarium…a Southern California Health Resort”  


Historical Notes

Glendale Sanitarium opened in 1905, a year before Glendale was incorporated as a city. It occupied the beautiful 75-room Victorian structure (Hotel Glendale) and stayed until moving out in 1924 to a new location at 1509 Wilson Terrace.  There it evolved into the well-known Glendale Adventist Methodist Center that exists today.




(ca. 1904)^^ – Panoramic view of Glendale and Eagle Rock from the hills to the west, looking northeast.  Two rows of mountains stripe the background (San Gabriel Mtns. and Verdugo Hills), enclosing the town below in a valley between them and the hills.  Residences are spaced far apart.  




(ca. 1910)^ - Panoramic view of Glendale, taken from Forest Lawn Hill.  





(1912)#* – Panoramic view of Glendale, looking west from Jackson Street.  


Historical Notes

Glendale experienced a significant growth spurt beginning around 1904, due in large part to the arrival of the Pacific Electric line.




(1918)^^ – Aerial view of Glendale looking northeast toward the Verdugo Mountains.  Most of the visible parts of the city seem to be residential, composed of small houses and tree-lined streets. There are several empty lots among the houses. In the upper left corner of the city is a large orchard with neatly planted rows of small trees. The Verdugo Mountains rise up dramatically behind the city.  




(ca. 1915)^ - Panoramic view of the Glendale valley as seen from Griffith Park, a canyon of which is seen in the foreground.  




Then and Now

(ca. 1910)^ vs. (2009)*^ - View of Glendale from Forest Lawn Memorial Park  


Historical Notes

When incorporated in 1906, Glendale consisted of only 1,486 acres.  By 1920, the City had grown through nine annexations to over 7,000 acres. From 1920 to 1930, ten annexations brought the total area to 12,294 acres.
The period 1930 to 1950 established many small annexations culminating in the 2,160 acre Whiting Woods and Verdugo Mountains annexations. This brought the area of the City to 15,140 acres or 23.6 square miles. Two major annexations, New York Avenue (in the La Crescenta area) and Upper Chevy Chase Canyon, and several smaller annexations enlarged the City to 29.2 square miles by 1952. Since 1952, twenty-seven annexations have occurred. The largest of these was the 662.8 acre Inter-Valley Ranch, now known as the George Dukemejian Wilderness Park. Currently the City consists of 30.5 square miles with a population of over 200,000. ###*



Brand Boulevard

(ca. 1904)^ - Early panoramic view of looking north on Brand Boulevard at Broadway with the First National Bank of Glendale seen at right.  Rail tracks run north and south on Brand with electric power poles in the middle of the street.  To the far right (N/E corner) stands the Pacific Eelctric station.  


Historical Notes

Brand Boulevard was named after Leslie Coombs Brand, “The Father of Glendale”. 

Brand was an important civic booster of the era who built an estate in 1904 called El Miradero featuring an eye-catching mansion whose architecture combined characteristics of Spanish, Moorish, and Indian styles (today’s Brand Library and Art Center).  His most important contributions to Glendale, though, was when he partnered with Henry E. Huntington to bring the Pacific Electric Railway, or the "Red Cars," to the area (1904).




(ca. 1906)^ - Early view of the Pacific Electric station in Glendale with car on track.  First National Bank of Glendale, the first brick building in town, is seen behind the depot.  


Historical Notes

The First National Bank of Glendale (the city’s second bank) was founded by Leslie Brand in 1905. Brand's friend and business partner, Dan Campbell, served as the bank's vice president and manager. #*




(1911)#* – Panoramic view showing the corner of Brand Boulevard and Fourth Street (now Broadway) with the Pacific Electric depot in the foreground and the First National Bank of Glendale behind it. Horse-drawn wagons and a bicyle are parked by the curb in front of the depot.  





(ca. 1910)^^ – View looking north in the 400 block of Brand Boulevard, Glendale.  Railway tracks and electric wires run up the middle of the dirt road. Commercial structures on both sides of the street are principally two-stories in height. Horse-drawn wagons are parked along both curbs. First National Bank Glendale can be see at right.  





(ca. 1910s)^ - View is looking at Brand Boulevard, north of Broadway. Work is being done on the right side of the road. Several businesses are seen including the First National Bank, Glendale building on the right.  






(ca. 1915)#*^ - Panoramic view of Glendale showing the Pacific Electric Railway running north and south on Brand Boulevard with Glendale Savings Bank (previously First National Bank Glendale) on at center-right.  






(1919)^ - View of Brand and Lexington and the surrounding area. The Glendale Press building is on the left. The train in the distance is stopped to pick up passengers waiting along the way.  





(ca. 1919)^ – View of Brand Boulevard from Wilson Avenue, looking north. Various businesses are seen on both sides of the road with railroad tracks running down the center of this wide street.  





(ca. 1920)^ – View looking north on Brand from Broadway.  Glendale Savings Bank (previously First National Bank) can be seen in the distance.  Electric car posts and wires fill the middle of the street.  


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(1910)^ - Three women and two men standing in front of the Glendale Theater. This is Glendale's first movie & vaudeville house.  




(ca. 1906-1918)***^ - The Glendale Transfer and Express Company's moving truck in Glendale.  


Historical Notes

Note the two phone numbers at the top of the truck (S.S. 82 and HOME 682). Between 1906 and 1918, the San Fernando Valley Home Telephone Company and Sunset Telephone both operated in the Glendale area. Unfortunately, neither was compatible with the other therefore requiring patrons to have two lines--one for each company.



(1914)***^ - View showing the Home Telephone Company office, located at 302 Brand Boulevard in Glendale. A state-of-the-art telephone maintenance vehicle is visible in the foreground.  


Historical Notes

In 1909, L. C. Brand invested heavily in the Home Telephone Company and installed new switchboards in company office at the Central Hotel Building on Brand Boulevard.***^




(1913)+++ – View showing a group of men and a child posing on an early model car in Glendale.  Sign on the side of car reads:  “Glendale Paint & Paper Co.  





(1916)***^ - View showing the police force of Glendale mounted on horseback in front of Fire House No. 1, located on Broadway between Louise and Kenwood Streets. (left to right) Emil Schroeder; Henry Hollenbeck; George Herald, Marshall & Fire Chief; Ernest Lawrence; Claire V. Arrington.  


Historical Notes

From 1913 to 1918, the Glendale police and fire departments operated as a single entity out of Fire House No. 1 on Broadway between Louise and Kenwood Streets. Police officers and firemen were often required to perform double-duty when needed. In the upper right window are the twin sons of George Herald: Frank and George, Jr.***^




(1923)^ - Glendale, incorporated as a city in 1906, by 1910 had a population of 2,742. In 1920 it had increased by 39%, to 13,576, creating "the fastest growing city in America." Here a truck bears a sign urging ratification of sewer bonds to enhance the awarding of building permits.  





(ca. 1930)***^ – View showing street paving in Glendale. A Richfield gas station and a Gilmore Red Lion gas station are visible in the background.  




(1931)^^ – Close-up view showing a 4-pump Signal Service Station in Glendale.  Large signs reads  Auto Laundry – Signal Purr-Pull. Click HERE to see more Early Views of Gas Stations.  


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Glendale Avenue

(1895)***^ - View of the Glendale Market and the Glendale Cash Grocery Store on the southwest corner of Crow Avenue (now Glendale Avenue) and 3rd Street (now Wilson Avenue) in Glendale. The lean-to at the right corner was the local barbershop. Visible in the foreground are the train tracks that ran through the center of town connecting Glendale with downtown Los Angeles.  




(ca. 1900)##^ – A group of people pose in front of Al Oliver’s Barbershop located on the southwest corner of Everett Street and Wilson Avenue in Glendale.  




(1905)***^ – View showing the Hotel Glendale located on the northwest corner of Glendale and Wilson Avenues (then Crow Avenue and 3rd Street).  


Historical Notes

The Glendale Bank was the first bank in Glendale. The building was constructed by Mr. Ayers.***^



(ca. 1908)***^ - Glendale Avenue, north from Harvard Street, circa 1908. The Southern Pacific railroad lines run down the center of Glendale Avenue.  




(1909)***^ – Horse-drawn carriages are lined up in front of the Glendale Stables, located on Glendale Avenue.  The stable was owned and operated by Thomas O. Pierce.  




(1910)***^ - The Glendale Market located on the southwest corner of Glendale Avenue and Broadway. Visible are (left to right): Fred Fish, Bill Whaley and unknown.  





(ca. 1910s)***^ – Postcard view showing The Bank of Glendale.  The bank was originally located on the corner of Crow Avenue (now Glendale Avenue) and Broadway.  




Tropico and Glendale

(1903)#+++ – A map of Tropico showing rail lines and surrounding area.  


Historical Notes

Tropico was put on the map as a fertile agricultural spot in the late 1800s. Shortly thereafter, the town began distancing itself from the rest of Glendale. In 1918, the neighborhood formally succeeded in becoming an independent entity for a short time.



(ca. 1905)^^ – View showing a "Tropico & Glendale" electric car outside Casa Verdugo adobe (Catalina Verdugo Adobe) in Glendale. The conductor stands outside of his electric car on the right with the tracks in front of him leading to the left foreground. Two more men stand next to an electrical pole at center while others sit under the shade of trees at left. The adobe can barely be seen through the trees.  


Historical Notes

Rancho San Rafael was granted to José María Verdugo on October 20, 1784. Don José died April 12, 1831, leaving his estate to his son Julio and his blind daughter Catalina. This adobe was built for Dona Catalina in the 1830s; she lived here until her death in 1861. Still in excellent condition, the Catalina, or Original Mud Block, Adobe is now in private ownership. Location: 2211 Bonita Dr, Glendale

The Catalina Verdugo Adobe is registered as California Historical Landmark No. 637 and the California Parlor No. 247. Click HERE to see more California HIstorical Landmarks in LA.



(n.d.)*^ – Map view showing the boundaries of Tropico.  


Historical Notes

Tropico was the name of the southern portion of Glendale, south of Windsor Road, between the late 1800s and 1918. The name "Glendale"  had originated in the 1880s and was utilized north of Windsor Road. Political factions had divided the town in two.   By the turn of the century, the commercial center of Tropico was at Central and San Fernando Road and its population was 700. ^##^



(1911)##^ – A banner in support of the annexation of Tropico to Glendale in 1911 hangs outside the measure's headquarters on Broadway near Brand Boulevard in Glendale. The measure failed to pass, with Tropico instead voting for its own incorporation as a city. The issue would be revisited in 1918, when the upper half of Tropico would become a part of Glendale.  


Historical Notes

Tropico was just a sleepy little village in the early 1900s. The business district included a few wooden buildings containing a general store, a blacksmith shop, meat store, livery stable, real estate offices and a few other small concerns. The buildings were all clustered near the intersection of San Fernando Road and Central Avenue. But within a few short years, the wood-frame buildings were replaced with brick, business boomed and the community became vibrant. The Tropico Art Tile Works stood just west of the railroad tracks, employing many people, and Tropico also became the shipping center for the strawberries raised in the area.

Because of its proximity to Los Angeles, the area became a popular residential spot. The Tropico Chamber of Commerce organized in 1910, along with the Bank of Tropico, and soon the community realized it needed a city government.

With so many of its residents commuting into Los Angeles, many favored annexing to Los Angeles. Others, seeing Glendale's successful example of home rule, wanted to be part of Glendale, which had incorporated in 1906. #+#+




(1910s)#+++ - View looking N/W on San Fernando Road at Central Ave with the Bank of Tropico located on the triangular lot at right.  


Historical Notes

With so many of its residents commuting into Los Angeles, many favored annexing to Los Angeles. Others, seeing Glendale's successful example of home rule, wanted to be part of Glendale, which had incorporated in 1906.  They felt that since the two communities were adjacent and in the same valley, they should be affiliated. Those favoring annexation with Glendale (mainly in the northeast part of Tropico) approached Glendale officials in 1911 and asked that an election be called.

The publishers of the Tropico Sentinel vehemently opposed annexation, and the issue failed. Instead, Tropico incorporated as its own city, with Elkanah W. Richardson, son of Tropico's founder, W.C.B. Richardson, serving as a member of the board of trustees.

The new city government immediately embarked on a badly needed improvement of the roads, but the annexation issue didn't go away.  Petition after petition was filed, each one eventually failing, until finally, in 1918, the annexation proposal passed.  The upper half of Tropico voted to go with Glendale, and the lower half voted to merge with Los Angeles. Today, that portion makes up the area known as Atwater. #+#+




(ca. 1910)#+++ – View showing a woman standing in front of the Tropico Post Office, with a bicycle parked by the curb.  


Historical Notes

The Tropico Post Office building was owned by WCB Richardson and was located near the corner of Central Avenue and San Fernando Road.



Then and Now

(1910s) vs. (2015)##^^ – View looking N/W on San Fernando Road at S. Central Avenue.  





(ca. 1921)***^ - Southern Pacific Railway grade crossing in the Tropico area of Glendale. The city of Tropico was annexed by Glendale in 1918. Bentley Lumber Company is visible on the right.  




Los Feliz and San Fernando

(ca. 1920)^ - Looking south at an intersection of Los Feliz Blvd. and San Fernando Rd. Various cars and trucks are traveling on the street. There are businesses on right side of the street some include: "Geo. V. Black prescription Druggist" and "Baker's Hardware". Note the ornate dual-lamp streetlight. Click HERE to see more Early Streetlights.  


Historical Notes

Los Feliz Boulevard in Glendale was formerly called Tropico Boulevard. ^




(ca. 1920s)^ - A view of San Fernando Rd. looking north at an intersection of Los Feliz Blvd. Various cars and trucks have stopped at the intersection. There are businesses that run along both sides of the street some include: a drug store, a sports equipment store, the "Piggly Wiggly", "Tavern Buffet", "Glenwood Hotel" and a service station with gasoline pumps.  




Glendale Union High School

(1902)^* – View showing the two-story frame school house known as "The Cheesebox" (because of its distinctive yellow color), constructed on the southeast corner of Brand and Broadway, opposite the present site of the Glendale Security Building.  


Historical Notes

Glendale Union High School was founded in 1901 by the residents of the villages of Glendale, La Crescenta, Burbank, Eagle Rock, Ivanhoe, Tropico and West Glendale.

The first classes were held at the Glendale Hotel. The first principal was Mr. Llewellyn Evans and the school had two teachers and 29 students. The next year, a new school building (seen above) was built at the corner of what is today Brand Boulevard and Broadway.*^




(ca. 1909)^ – View showing Glendale Union High School at its second location, on Harvard Street, where the Glendale Public Library stands today.  


Historical Notes

Erected in 1908, Glendale Union High School was located on Harvard Street in Glendale. The building was a two-story, pressed brick building facing Harvard. This marked the first departure of wooden school houses in Glendale. In 1913, three acres were added to the site and two more buildings were constructed.^




(ca. 1920)^ - View of Glendale Union High School located on Harvard Street in Glendale.  Glendale High School is now located at 1440 East Broadway.  


Historical Notes

The school continued to grow, as enrollment reached 800 in 1920 and 1,050 in 1921. It was decided then to move the Grade 10, 11 and 12 classes to a new campus at the corner of the present-day Broadway Avenue and Verdugo Road. The school has remained in this location (1440 East Broadway, at the southeast corner of Verdugo) since 1924.*^




(ca. 1924)^ – The Glendale Union High School football team picture. The football helmets seen between some players' feet look extremely pliable.    


Historical Notes

From the 1920's thru 1940's helmets always were strictly of leather construction, and were not mandatory until the 1930's.

One member of this Glendale football team, Marion Morrison, seated in the front row, third from the right, nicknamed "Duke", was a star football player, Senior class president, and sports editor of the school newspaper. "Duke" Morrison graduated in 1925, stumbled into acting, and later became known as John Wayne. ^




El Miradero

(ca. 1904)^ - View of El Miradero, the estate of Leslie C. Brand, as seen from the entrance gates of the property.  


Historical Notes

Born in Missouri in 1859, Leslie Coombs Brand became the sole provider for his family at age 11. In 1886, Brand came to California to take advantage of its first boom period. #*#^

Brand was a major figure in the settlement and economic growth of the Glendale area. He had purchased land on the lower slopes of Mount Verdugo overlooking the city, and in 1904 built an imposing residence that became known as Brand Castle, also El Miradero (which today houses the Brand Library).*^



(1904)^*# – West side view of the newly constructed ‘El Miradero’, home of Leslie C. Brand.  


Historical Notes

Designed by Leslie C. Brand's brother-in-law Nathaniel Dryden, the mansion was completed in 1904 and is similar in style to that of the East Indian Pavilion built for the 1893 Columbian World Exposition held in Chicago. The architecture is considered Saracenic, with crenellated arches, bulbous domes and minars combining characteristics of Spanish, Moorish, and Indian styles.^



(ca. 1906)^*# – View of El Miradero Mansion standing between orange groves in the foreground and the Verdugo Hills in the background.  


Historical Notes

Leslie C. Brand helped develop the city of Glendale.  Together with Henry E. Huntington, he brought Pacific Electric to the town to develop it. The 'Brand Library' section of the Glendale Public Library is named in his honor. Brand Boulevard in Glendale is also named in his honor.*^



(ca. 1906)##* - View of exterior porch of El Miradero (Brand Mansion) enclosed with a scalloped arched arcade. The porch is furnished with wicker chairs and potted plants.  




(ca. 1906)^*# – View looking South over Glendale and Griffith Park toward Los Angeles through one of the many arches of ‘El Miradero’.  


Historical Notes

Just across the mostly dry Los Angeles River, Brand could see the Griffith Park Aerodrome's grass field, built in 1912. Just three years later he decided to build his own grass airstrip below his mansion.*^



(1921)***^ - An aerial view of L. C. Brand's airfield in front of his home, El Miradero in Glendale. The airplanes took off downhill toward Kenneth Road.   


Historical Notes

Brand established a grassy, well-manicured airfield in front of the mansion. The airfield consisted of a 1,200' rolled dirt runway, with a white hangar at one end and a putting green on the other. The hangar matched the architectural style of the mansion - with turrets atop each of the 4 corners.*#*#



1923)*#*# – Aerial view looking north at Brand Field, showing the hangar and 10 aircraft on the field, and the mansion across the street. Note the steep terrain – obviously takeoffs to the north wouldn't be advisable.  


Historical Notes

Only 3 aircraft are known to have been actually based at Brand Field.  However, Brand apparently bought many war surplus Jennies, some to tinker with and fly as a sport, although most languished in storage buildings.*#*#




(ca. 1920s)*#*# – View of millionaire Leslie C. Brand mowing the lawn in front of the Moorish-style hangar at his private Airfield.  


Historical Notes

Brand built his first hangar in 1916 and put together a fleet of planes, and held fly-in parties. The only requirement was that guests had to arrive in their own planes and bring passengers.*^




(1921)^*# – Several airplanes and guests arriving at Brand's fly-in luncheon party on April 1, 1921. El Miradero Mansion is seen in the background.  


Historical Notes

Brand Field was no longer depicted on a 1931 street map, but “Brand Park” was depicted, so the airfield may have ceased operation by that point.*#*#



(ca. 1920)^ - View of El Miradero and estate grounds, once home to Leslie C. Brand. Three vehicles are seen parked next to one another where the driveway and path to the front door meet. Four people, three men and one woman, are standing next to the automobiles.  


Historical Notes

It was stated in Brand's will that El Miradero would be bequeathed to the city upon his wife's death, on the condition that the property be used exclusively for a public park and library. Mrs. Mary Louise Brand retained rights of the residence from 1925, when Mr. Brand died, until her death in 1945.^



(ca. 1940s)#^^ - Postcard view of the entrance to El Miradero, the estate of Leslie C. Brand, located in Brand Park.  


Historical Notes

In 1956 the mansion became the Brand Library, the art and music branch of the Glendale Public Library. The address is 1601 West Mountain Street, Glendale.^


Brand Boulevard (1920 +)

(1925)^ - View looking north on Glendale's Brand Boulevard, when power poles were still located in the middle of the street. An electric car is seen descending the street. Palm trees line the boulevard in the upper portion of the photo.  




(ca. 1920s)^ - View shows several automobiles travelling up and down the business section of Brand Boulevard, in Glendale. Note train stopped in the middle of the road to pick up and drop of passengers.  




(ca. 1924)^ - View looking north down the center of Brand Boulevard.  The electric streetcar tracks are running north to south with a pair of tracks going off to the right toward Broadway. There are several businesses and stores that run along both sides of the street including "The Owl Drug Co." (N/E corner of Brand and Broadway). On the right in the distance, the Alexander Theatre with its original facade is visible.  




(1924)^ -  View of the corner of Brand and Broadway in Glendale. Note there are no street lights as pedestrians and automobiles cross the streets. Many businesses may be seen on both sides of the street including railroad tracks which run down the middle of this wide street. A large seven-story building is on the right.  




(ca. 1920s)^##- Downtown Glendale, looking south on Brand Boulevard from Broadway.  



Palace Grand Theatre

(1920s)^ - View of the Business Block on Brand Boulevard, in Glendale. The Palace Grand Theatre is seen on the right at 131 N. Brand Blvd.  


Historical Notes

The Palace Grand Theatre was originally built and owned by Henry C. Jensen, who would later build the more palatial Raymond Theatre in Pasadena. The neo-classical building was designed by architect Robert G. Kitts. Construction on the Palace Grand began in August, 1914.^




(ca. 1920)^ -  View showing the Palace Grand Theatre located at 131 N. Brand Boulevard with a bicycle parked at the curb.  


Historical Notes

The Palace Grand Theatre was operated by Henry C. Jensen for several years.  By 1923, though, it had been renamed the T D & L Theatre, operated by the Turner, Dahnken and Langley Company, which became the basis of the Fox-West Coast circuit.  After T D & L it became the Lincoln Theatre. The entire block on which it stood has long since been redeveloped. It may have closed as early as the 1930’s. ^^*


Glendale Masonic Temple

(1931)^*# – View showing the Glendale Masonic Temple, located at 232 S. Brand Blvd.  The ‘Re-elect Gov. C.C. Young Headquarters’ is seen on the left.  


Historical Notes

The 1920s-building was designed by Arthur Lindley, whose firm Lindley & Selkirk designed the Alex Theatre a few blocks north of the temple.

California Governor C.C. Young ran for a second term but lost to Frank Merriam, and left office on January 6, 1931. He retired from politics and returned to his business in real estate development.*^



(1931)^*# - Closer view showing the entrance to the Masonic Temple on Brand.  


Historical Notes

Americana at Brand owner Rick Caruso and his company, Caruso Affiliated, bought the 1920s-era Masonic temple right across the street from the Americana and renovated the building.  The repurposed Art Deco building now houses the commercial real estate firm CBRE.

Click HERE to see contemporary view.


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(1931)^^ – View looking at west across the tracks showing the Pay'n Takit Store located at 329 North Brand Boulevard.  The grocery store shared the building with Glendale News-Press.  



Glendale Avenue (1920s)

(1922)***^ – View showing the Pacific Southwest Trust and Savings Bank and the Glendale Business College, located on the southeast corner of Broadway and Crow Avenue (now Glendale Avenue).  


Historical Notes

From 1909 to circa 1922, the Glendale Bank was located in this building. The wires and tracks of the Pacific Electric Railway are visible running down the middle of the street. The Pacific Electric local line ran along East Broadway from Brand Boulevard to Chevy Chase Drive.***^



(1926)++# - View looking south on Glendale Avenue from just below Wilson Avenue.  Note the Glendale & Montrose depot at right, the surviving Glendale Hotel at left and the rails curving off to the left to run in Wilson and thence to Eagle Rock.  




(1920s)++# – View showing the Glendale & Montrose (G&M) car No. 12 at the G&M depot on Glendale Ave.  


Historical Notes

G&M No. 12 was one of four cars, nos. 10-13, built for the G&M by the American Car Company in 1920. ++#




(1949)#^ –  View showing Pacific Electric PCC no. 5021 rolling to a stop on Brand Boulevard at Broadway.  On the right is the east side of the 100 block of N. Brand. At 114 N. Brand is "Frank Gordon" clothes. At 118 N. Brand is "Mutual Savings & Loan".  





(1955)++# - View of Pacific Electric PCC and Hollywood cars at North Glendale Avenue (end of Brand) on the last day of service on the Glendale line.  Photo by Loren Ayers, 6/19/1955  


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Glendale Airport - Grand Central Airport


(1927)*# – Aerial view looking southeast showing the Glendale Airport field in an early configuration with a smaller border (bottom of photo).  Note the peach orchard forming the northern border at lower-right.  The Slate Aircraft Corporation dirigible hangar is visible on the south side of the field (center) and Griffith Park Airport is visible across the river.


Historical Notes

In 1922—with prompting from the Aero Club of California, returning World War I pilots and local aviation enthusiasts who wanted to get in on the exciting new world of flying—the Glendale Chamber of Commerce purchased 33 acres adjacent to the Southern Pacific Railroad tracks, directly across the river from the Griffith Airdrome. They cleared a 1,200-ft. runway for the Glendale Municipal Airport. It opened in March 1923.

Soon after clearing the field, objections were raised for the City’s plans, and a bond issue was unsuccessful, so citizen supporters, led by Dr. Thomas Young, got together to form the Glendale Airport Association. This group bought the City out, and Glendale finally had an official airport.

The first hangar built at Glendale Airport was for the Kinner Airplane & Motor Corporation. Bert Kinner built Amelia Earhart’s first airplane, the Kinner Airster, in 1923. He also manufactured the first government-certified aircraft engine in 1928. +##




(1927)*# – View showing three biplanes and one monoplane in front of the Wilson Aero Corporation hangar, with the Slate Aircraft Corporation dirigible hangar also visible on the left.  


Historical Notes

The concept for this airport probably began with Leslie Coombs Brand (1859–1925), a major figure in the settlement and economic growth of the Glendale area. He had purchased land on the lower slopes of Mount Verdugo overlooking the city, and in 1904 built an imposing residence that became known as Brand Castle (which today houses the Brand Library). Just across the mostly dry Los Angeles River he could see the Griffith Park Aerodrome's grass field, built in 1912. Just three years later he decided to build his own grass airstrip below his mansion (Brand Field). He built his first hangar in 1916 and put together a fleet of planes, and held fly-in parties. The only requirement was that guests had to arrive in their own planes and bring passengers.*^



(1929)^^ - Aerial view of Grand Central Air Terminal, Glendale, 1929. The airfield can be seen at center and a single runway is visible. Hundreds of cars can be seen parked near the runway at left, and planes are visible on the taxiways. Closely spaced houses can be seen in the foreground and in the background.  


Historical Notes

The Glendale Municipal Airport was renamed "Grand Central Air Terminal" (GCAT) when it was purchased by other venture capitalists, who expanded it to 175 acres. On February 22, 1929 a terminal with a control tower had been built, and was opened to much fanfare. Designed by Henry L. Gogerty, the intention was to construct an air terminal along the lines of a classic railroad terminal. It combined a style consisting of Spanish Colonial Revival with Zig-zag Moderne influences (Art Deco). GCAT became a major airport of entry to Los Angeles and provided the first paved runway west of the Rocky Mountains. Within a year, the entire enterprise was sold to a group calling itself the Curtiss-Wright Flying Service, managed by Major Corliss C. Moseley, a co-founder of the future Western Airlines. It became the city's largest employer.*^



(1932)^^ - Aerial view of Grand Central Airport in Glendale, February 28, 1932. The terminal is at center and is a large, rectangular, mission-style structure. A tall control tower sticks up from the upper right corner. Two small aircraft are parked directly in front of the terminal, and hundreds of automobiles are parked in a lot behind the terminal. Many people are lined up near the aircraft. The runway is at center and borders a large dirt field. In the distance at left, a neatly arranged neighborhood is visible, while railroad tracks can be seen in the foreground at right.  


Historical Notes

In 1947 the runway was cut back to 3,800' (southeast of Sonora Ave) due to pressure from local government. The airport was returned to private use, renamed Grand Central Airport, ceased to be profitable, and was closed in 1959 to make way for the development of the Grand Central Business Park, which today houses corporate offices of the Walt Disney Company as well as the headquarters for Walt Disney Imagineering. For a number of years the Southwest corner was used as a commercial helicopter base. That space is now occupied by the DreamWorks Animation SKG production company. The city of Glendale retains some interest in aviation, for it is part owner of the Bob Hope Airport (formerly "Burbank-Glendale-Pasadena Airport").*^



(1930)+## - Airplane Crossing sign at Grand Central Airport in Glendale.  




(ca. 1930s)^^ - Photograph of a radial-engine airplane outside the Grand Central Airport. The high-wing monoplane can be seen in the foreground at right, and a man in a suit is visible near an open door under the wing. The Spanish-style air terminal can be seen in the background. It is a two-story structure with a terracotta tile roof. In the background at left, a tall rectangular control tower is visible. Legible signs include "Grand Central Air Terminal" and "Curtiss-Wright".  




(ca. 1937)^ - A wing and arrow top this neon sign for the Grand Central Air Terminal, located at 1310 Air Way in Glendale. A smaller sign hangs below encouraging one to fly the American Airlines Sleeper Flagships. A log fence and telephone lines separate the neighboring Spanish style ranch houses from the field surrounding the sign. A painted sign advertising the new development of "Ranchos" is cut off in the foreground.  




(1937)^ - View of an American Airlines DST (Douglas Sleeper Transport - an early version of a DC-3) prop plane carrying mail on the landing at the Grand Central Air Terminal, located at 1310 Air Way in Glendale.  


Historical Notes

The Grand Central Air Terminal was designed by Henry L. Gogerty in 1928 in the Spanish Colonial Revival style with zig-zag moderne elements. The terminal is a City of Glendale registered landmark.^



(1940s)^*^ - A shining DC-3 parked in front of the Grand Central Airport terminal as night falls.  


Historical Notes

The Grand Central Airport was officially closed on July 15, 1959 and has been replaced with a warehouse district, but the main terminal survives.*

The runways were torn out and replaced by a street named Grand Central Avenue. Over 70 new “tilt up” manufacturing buildings were constructed under the direction of the Grand Central Industrial Centre. The redeveloped airport property was eventually purchased by the Prudential Insurance Company and leased out as an investment.

When Walt Disney was developing Disneyland in the early 1950s, he wanted a place away from the main studio where he could work on new ideas undisturbed. He rented an industrial building at 1401 Flower St. on the old airport property. WED (Walter E. Disney) Enterprises also rented the old terminal building during the busy years of Epcot and Disney World development.

Dreamworks was created in 1994, and their new buildings soon appeared on part of the old airport land just down the street from Disney’s leased building. The Disney Corporation soon purchased the remaining land from the airport and have announced a 15-year plan to turn it into a corporate “creative campus” behind security gates.

Disney has stated their intention to rework the old terminal by the year 2015 to its original look. Much of the original metal work, railings and lights have been stripped away over the years, but the Disney representative feels that their company can easily reproduce replacement pieces.

There are also two original hangars left—one very modified into a cold storage facility and the other is now used by Disney Imagineering for special effects mock-ups.+##



Glendale Southern Pacific Railroad Depot

(ca. 1923)^*# - Close-up view of the Mission Revival Style entrance to the Glendale Train Station.  


Historical Notes

The Glendale Southern Pacific Railroad Depot (now known as Glendale Amtrak/Metrolink Station) was designed in the Mission Revival Style by architects Maurice Couchot and Kenneth MacDonald, Jr. and built by the Southern Pacific Railroad in 1923; replacing an older one that dated as far back as 1883.^



(ca. 1960s)^ - Exterior view of the surprisingly empty railroad station at Glendale. This is the "back" portion of the station, where travelers wait for their trains to arrive and/or depart. Two stationary freight cars can be seen at the rear of the building.  




(ca. 1950)^^^ - Southern Pacific #4194 ‘Tehachapi’ Night Train 55 at the Glendale Station.  Photo by Richard Steinheimer.  




(ca. 1980s)*** – View showing a train coming into the Glendale Southern Pacific Railroad Depot.  


Historical Notes

The City of Glendale bought the depot from Southern Pacific in 1989 and acquired adjacent properties to create an intermodal center. Restoration of the historic building and the construction of other elements of the intermodal center cost approximately $6 million.*^

The depot (now known as Glendale Amtrak/Metrolink Station) was added to the National Register of Historic Places on May 2, 1997 - #97000376, and has undergone an extensive renovation since then. The Glendale train station is located at 400 Cerritos Avenue.^

Click HERE to see contemporary view.


Verdugo Wash

(1934)##^ - A man is seen standing in the Verdugo Wash after the 1934 flood.  


Historical Notes

The most severe flood recorded in Glendale occurred in 1934. Intense precipitation on New Year’s Eve, 1933 occurred locally in the La Canada Flintridge area, causing the Verdugo Wash to swell and overflow its then natural channel. Extensive areas of the drainage basin had burned earlier, in November 1933, causing large amounts of debris. The debris was carried by the storm waters down the mountains, and into the alluvial valleys, where several roads were choked. Damage was not confined to Verdugo Wash, but extended to several of the canyons draining the eastern and southern flanks of the Verdugo Mountains, and also in Sycamore and Scholl Canyons. Several people died, several bridges were washed out, and erosion and sedimentation damaged property.^




(1934)^ - An unidentified and mud-covered street in Glendale, captured after the flood of January 1, 1934. Men look at a severely damaged car, not far from homes (right), while other people are seen assessing other damage further down the street.  


Historical Notes

Wildfires above the Crescenta Valley in November 1933 and subsequent heavy rain in December 1933 produced the perfect conditions for a massive flood. Just after midnight on January 1, 1934, millions of tons of mud and debris traveled from the mountains down to the Verdugo Wash, killing many people and destroying about 400 homes in the communities of La Cañada, La Crescenta, Montrose and Tujunga. Woody Guthrie's song, "Los Angeles New Year's Flood," commemorates the natural disaster.*




(1934)^ - A young woman watches a man shovel mud off the sidewalk outside of Alexander Pharmacy, located at 251 N. Brand Boulevard in Glendale, after the flood on January 1, 1934. This commercial building is still standing, but its façade has been greatly modified. Click HERE for contemporary view.  


Historical Notes

E.C. Eaton, the County Flood Control District’s chief engineer at the time, estimated that 600,000 cubic yards of debris came down in just 20 minutes. He called for the completion of a flood-control system.

A federal Flood Control Act was signed in 1936, and the Verdugo Flood Control Project came into being.




(1936)*^ - View showing the construction of the new concrete-lined Verdugo Wash storm drain looking north between Glenoaks Blvd. and Royal Blvd.  


Historical Notes

Verdugo Wash is a 9.4-mile-long tributary of the Los Angeles River in the Glendale area.  The stream begins just south of Interstate 210 in the Crescenta Valley. It flows southeast along the eastern edge of the Verdugo Mountains, then south through a pass between those mountains and the San Rafael Hills, and finally west to ultimately join the Los Angeles River just northeast of Griffith Park. Its entire path is located within the city of Glendale.*^




(1936)*^ - View looking up the channel from the section between Glenoaks Blvd. and Royal Blvd. showing concrete mixer placing floor of storm drain for one side channel.  


Historical Notes

Today, the Verdugo Wash is entirely encased in a concrete flood control channel with the exception of the free-flowing stream inside the Verdugo Wash Debris Basin Dam.*^




(1938)^ - View showing two men inspecting the spilling basin of the new Verdugo Wash.  


Historical Notes

Photo caption reads:  “Capt. Lyle Rosenberg (left), and Lieut. F. E. Ressegieu inspecting the completed basin. Waters from the wash will spill down the concrete and steel stairs (background), and then into the basin in the foreground. A 10-foot concrete wall will cut the water's speed before it goes into the riverbed, lessening the flood hazards.”  Photo dated: December 2, 1938.



Carpenter's Drive-in Restaurant

(ca. 1938)^ - View showing Carpenter's Drive-in Restaurant located at 606 E. Colorado St. in Glendale. The drive-in featured fried chicken, sandwiches, year round fresh fruit pies, breakfast, hamburgers and fountain service. The Rite Spot Cafe pylon is seen in the background.  


Historical Notes

In 1936, after separating from his brother, Charles E. Carpenter opened three Carpenter's Cafes. A transitional project Carpenter's Village (606 E. Colorado) combined a Rite Spot Cafe and Carpenter's Drive-in (seen above). Next he opened the Rite Spot Cafe in Pasadena, located at 1500 West Colorado Street (now considered Eagle Rock) and the Santa Anita Cafe at Huntington and Colorado.^

Click HERE to see more Early LA Drive-in Restaurants.



Brand Boulevard (1930 +)

(1930)^ - View of the southwest corner of Brand and Colorado, in Glendale. Several businesses are seen in the area, including "Mac's", a cigar, candy and sandwiches store located at the corner. Click HERE to see contemporary view.  





(1936)+++ - View looking north from the 500 block of N. Brand Blvd., Glendale.  Sign at right reads:  HOTEL CALIFORNIA GARAGE  





(1938)+++ – Day time view looking north on Brand during Christmas.  





(1937)#+++ – Night view looking south on Brand Boulevard during the Holiday Season with the Hotel California seen on the right.  





(ca. 1938)^ - This view looking north on Brand at Wilson captures the Sontag, located at 200 North Brand. Just north of the drugstore is the Alexander Theatre (later the Alex Theatre) before the S. Charles Lee remodel (1940) and the addition of a 100 foot Art Deco tower.  



Hotel California (aka California Hotel)

(ca. 1952)#+++ – View showing the Hotel California and California Theatre, located on the southwest corner Lexington Dr. and Brand Blvd.  


Historical Notes

Built in 1927 and occupied in 1928, the California Hotel, along with the Glendale Hotel (Broadway and Glendale Ave), were the city’s “nicest places” for visitors to stay in the 1930s and 1940s.  The California was among only a few hotels in greater Los Angeles that included a full-sized theater.



(ca. 1952)#+++ – Close-up view showing the entrance to the Hotel California aka California Hotel (1927-1966).  


Historical Notes

When motels became popular in the late 40s and thereafter, popularity of the California Hotel began to fade.   The hotel was demolished in 1966 and replaced with a Bank of America building. 

Click HERE to see contemporary view.


Alex Theatre

(1940s)##^* - Spotlights draw attention to what appears to be a film premiere at the Alex Theatre, located at 216 N. Brand Boulevard.  


Historical Notes

Designed by architects Charles R. Selkirk and Arthur G. Lindley with an emphasis on Greek and Egyptian themes, the Alex Theatre (originally known as the Alexander) opened its doors as a Vaudeville and motion picture house in 1925. In 1940 by S. Charles Lee added the 100 foot tall Art Deco tower. Included in Lee's design were the three-sided marquee, outdoor ticketing kiosk, and the decorative terrazzo floor crested in bright tropical colors.^



(ca. 1937)^ - Interior view of the Alex Theatre showing the decorative stage curtain, done in a Grecian motif, and enclosed by column on both sides of the stage.  




(ca. 1969)^ - Close-up night view of the Alex Theatre (originally known as the Alexander Theatre) located on Brand Avenue in Glendale.  The James Bond film "Her Majesty's Secret Service" and "The Super Fight" of Marciano versus Cassius Clay are advertised on the marquee.  


Historical Notes

The Alexander officially opened its doors on September 4, 1925. It was operated by the West Coast-Langley Theatre Circuit and featured vaudeville performances, plays and silent movies on a single screen. It was named after Alexander Langley, the son of C.L. Langley, owner of the West Coast chain that included the Raymond Theater in Pasadena, and the Orange Theatre in the city of Orange.*^



(ca. 1979)^ - Exterior view of the Alex Theatre located on Brand Boulevard. The film "Star Trek" is advertised on the sign.  The exterior of The Hedy Shop, a clothing store for women and children, is visible on the right. Click HERE for contemporary view.  





(1955)++# - View looking northeast at the corner of Brand Boulevard and Wilson Avenue showing two streetcars inbound to LA on the next to the last day of PE service to Glendale, 6/18/1955.  The tower and roof of the Alex Theater rise in the background.  



Webb's Department Store

(ca. 1955)+++ – View looking north on Brand Boulevard with Webb’s Department Store is seen at left on the southwest corner of Brand Boulevard and Wilson Avenue.  


Historical Notes

Webb’s department store was the cornerstone of shopping for the Glendale community.  It was locally owned and operated and expanded to several other buildings nearby.

Harry S. Webb came to Glendale in 1916 from Chicago, convinced that California offered a great opportunity for a department-store business.  His first Webb’s store was near the corner of Brand Boulevard and Broadway.




(1962)*** – View looking at the intersection of Brand Boulevard and Wilson Avenue, showing Webb's Department Store standing on the southwest corner.   Newberry's Department Store is seen further south on the left.  


Historical Notes

For nearly 50 years after its founding, Webb's was the only major department store in Glendale. But it began to get competition--first from Robinson's when it opened at the Fashion Center in 1966 and later from stores in the Galleria, which opened in two phases, in 1976 and 1982. With the Galleria's completion, shoppers in Glendale could choose from among such department stores as The Broadway, Buffum's, J. C. Penney, Mervyn's and Nordstrom's. *^^



Glendale Galleria

(1984)^ - Photograph caption dated August 12, 1984 reads, "A skylight and plants brighten the Nordstrom store at Glendale Galleria shopping mall."  Photo by Lisa Hatalsky  


Historical Notes

Developed by Glendale Associates, a partnership between J.S. Griffiths Co, Broadway Hale Stores and M.J. Brock & Sons, the Glendale Galleria opened on October 14, 1976.  The architect was Jon Jerde, who credited his design to a Ray Bradbury essay on reviving retail districts.  The mall began with four anchor stores: Buffum's and The Broadway, which opened in August 1976; Ohrbach's, which opened in October, 1976; and JCPenney, which opened in November of that year.

The Galleria's first expansion, Galleria II, was completed in 1983.  It expanded a wing of the mall and added another anchor store, Nordstrom.  The first Panda Express restaurant opened in Galleria II in the same year, on level 3 near Bloomingdale's.*^




(1990)^ - Panoramic view of Glendale, looking northeast from the Glendale Galleria parking structure. Photo by William Reagh  



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References anc Credits

* DWP - LA Public Library Image Archive

^ LA Public Library Image Archive

^^USC Digital Library

**LMU Digital Library


^*Glendale High School Home Page

*#Abandoned & Little-Known Airfields – Paul Freeman

#*Flickr.com: Glendale Public Library

#^Pacific Electric Railway Historical Society

++Early Glendale (Images of America)

++#Facebook: Paul Ayers


*^^LA Times: Webb's Department Store

+++Facebook: Vintage Glendale "The Jewel City"

^*^Nuestra Señora la Reina de los Ángeles: losangelespast.com

^^*Cinema Treasures: Palace Grand Theatre

^^^Depaul.edu: Night Train 55

***PhantomLosAngeles.blogspot.com: Glendale Southern Pacific Railroad

^*#California State Library Image Archive

^##Metropolitan Transportation Library and Archive

+##Airport Journals: Grand Central Aiport

#*^Library of Congress

#^^Calisphere Digital Archive

##^CSUN Oviatt Library Digital Archives

##*OAC - Online Archive of California

^##^Glendale Historical Society

#+#+Glendale News-Press: Tropic

#*#^Brand Park and Studios: glendale.ca.us

***^CSUN Oviatt Library Digital Archives

#+++Facebook.com: West San Fernando Valley Then And Now

##^*Facebook.com: Classic Hollywood-Los Angeles-SFV

##^^Google Street View





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