Early Views of Hollywood (1920 +)

Historical Photos of Early Hollywood
 
(1927)* - Night view shows theater lights and throngs of fans packing the streets for blocks around Grauman's Chinese Theatre. Publicity of Hollywood premiers usually brought stars and other distinguished visitors to magnificent events such as the one seen here - possibly the opening night of a movie starring Douglas Fairbanks.  

 

Historical Notes

After his success with the Egyptian Theatre, Sid Grauman turned to Charles E. Toberman to secure a long term lease on property at 6925 Hollywood Blvd. Toberman contracted the architectural firm of Meyer & Holler (who had also designed the Egyptian) to design a "palace type theatre" of Chinese design. Grauman's Chinese Theatre was financed by Grauman, who owned a one-third interest, and his partners: Mary Pickford, Douglas Fairbanks, and Howard Schenck. The principal architect of the Chinese Theatre was Raymond M. Kennedy, of Meyer and Holler.*^

 

 

 

 

 
(ca. 1930s)* - Footprints of the stars at Grauman's Chinese Theater in Hollywood.  

 

Historical Notes

During construction, Grauman hired Jean Klossner to formulate an extremely hard concrete for the forecourt of the theatre. Klossner later became known as "Mr. Footprint," performing the footprint ceremonies from 1927 through 1957.*^

 

 

 

 
(1927)*^^^ - View of Douglas Fairbanks putting his shoe print in the fresh concrete in front of the Grauman's Chinese Theater. Mary Pickford is by his side.  

 

Historical Notes

Douglas Fairbanks and Mary Pickford were the inaugural celebrities to put their feet and handprints into fresh concrete at Grauman's Chinese Theater on April 30, 1927. This picture shows the two stars, exhibitor Sid Grauman, a workman, and how the event was apparently not open to the public.*^^^

 

 

 
(1927)#^* - View of Grauman's Chinese Theatre the year it opened, with its one-of-a-kind grandeur and décor.  

 

Historical Notes

Previously, Grauman built the Million Dollar Theatre in downtown Los Angeles and the lavish Egyptian Theatre a few blocks from the Chinese, but this would be his dream theatre.

Norma Talmadge turned the first spade full of dirt in January 1926 and beautiful Chinese actress Anna May Wong drove the first rivet in the steel girders. Built at a cost of $2,000,000, eighteen months later the Chinese Theatre opened. #***

 

 

 

 
(1927)* - Exterior view of the Grauman's Chinese Theater located at 6925 Hollywood Boulevard.  

 

Historical Notes

Grauman's Chinese Theatre opened in May 18, 1927, after a construction period of 18 months. Built to resemble a giant, red Chinese pagoda, the architecture features a huge Chinese dragon across the front, two stone lion-dogs guarding the main entrance, and the silhouettes of tiny dragons up and down the sides of the copper roof.*

 

 

 

 

 
(1930)* - Premiere of "Morocco" starring Marlene Dietrich and Gary Cooper at the Grauman's Chinese Theatre.  

 

Historical Notes

Morocco is a 1930 American romance drama film directed by Josef von Sternberg and starring Gary Cooper, Marlene Dietrich, and Adolphe Menjou. The film is about a cabaret singer and a Legionnaire who fall in love. The film is most famous for the scene in which Dietrich performs a song dressed in a man's tailcoat and kisses another woman, both of which were rather scandalous for the period.

In 1992, Morocco was selected for preservation in the United States National Film Registry by the Library of Congress as being "culturally, historically, or aesthetically significant".*^

 

 

 

 
(1930)* - Premier night of "Hell's Angels" at Grauman's Chinese Theatre. View is looking down from the top of the Roosevelt Hotel. The iconic First National Bank Tower can be seen in the background.  

 

Historical Notes

Hell's Angels is a 1930 American war film, directed by Howard Hughes and starring Jean Harlow, Ben Lyon, and James Hall. The film, which was produced by Hughes and written by Harry Behn and Howard Estabrook, centers on the combat pilots of World War I.

Originally shot as a silent film, Hughes retooled the film over a lengthy gestation period. Most of the film is in black and white, but there is one color sequence - the only color footage of Harlow's career. Hell's Angels is now hailed as one of the first sound blockbuster action films.*^

 

 

 

 
(1930)^^- The premiere of “Hell’s Angels” at Grauman’s Chinese Theatre in Hollywood as seen from across the street.  

 

Historical Notes

Producer/director Howard Hughes poured nearly $4 million into his production of “Hell’s Angels” so he wanted to make sure everybody knew about it. On May 24, 1930 he threw a premiere the likes of which Hollywood had never seen before. And for the movie’s run at Grauman's Chinese Theatre, he had the title emblazoned on the columns, just in case, you know, there was anyone left who hadn’t heard of his movie. #**#

 

 

 

 
(1930)^^ - View of the nighttime movie premier of "Hell's Angels" at Grauman's Chinese Theater.  

 

Historical Notes

After being signed by director Howard Hughes, Harlow's first major appearance was in Hell's Angels, followed by a series of critically unsuccessful films, before signing with Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer in 1932. Harlow became a leading lady for MGM, starring in a string of hit films including Red Dust (1932), Dinner at Eight (1933), Reckless (1935) and Suzy (1936). Among her frequent co-stars were William Powell, Spencer Tracy and, in six films, Clark Gable.

Harlow's popularity rivaled and soon surpassed that of her MGM colleagues Joan Crawford and Norma Shearer. She had become one of the biggest movie stars in the world by the late 1930s, often nicknamed the "Blond Bombshell" and the "Platinum Blonde", and popular for her "Laughing Vamp" movie persona. She died during the filming of Saratoga in 1937 at the age of 26.*^
 

 

 

 
(1930)^ - Hollywood at night as seen from the Hollywood Hills. Spotlights can be seen in the background as Hollywood premiers another movie.  

 

 

 

 

 
(ca. 1932)^*^# - A postcard view of Hollywood Blvd. at night, circa 1932.  

 

 

Outpost Sign

 
(1920s)*# – View looking north over Grauman's Chinese Theatre showing a large sign in the Hollywood Hills reading:  OUTPOST  

 

Historical Notes

In the 1920s, in the hills above the Outpost Estates development, a large sign spelled out "Outpost" in red neon letters 30 feet high. It was intended to compete with the Hollywoodland sign, (which later became the Hollywood sign). At the time, it was the largest neon sign in the United States. *^

 

 

 

 
(1928)*# – View of Outpost Drive as it winds its up through the Hollywood Hills towards Outpost Estates.  The OUTPOST sign can be seen in the background, high up on the hill.  

 

Historical Notes

The area was the site of the first building in what is now Hollywood, a three-room adobe house built in 1853 by Don Tomas Urquidez, near what is now the intersection of Outpost Drive and Hillside Avenue. General Harrison Grey Otis, the owner of the Los Angeles Times, acquired the estate from Don Tomás through legal wrangling associated with California's secession to the United States. Near Casa Don Tomás, Otis built a clubhouse on the property for entertaining, which he called "The Outpost."

In 1924, Charles E. Toberman acquired the property. He kept the Outpost name and developed the property as one of several 1920s Hollywood luxury residential neighborhoods. *^

 

 

 

 
(ca. 1920s) )#++#– Close-up view showing the OUTPOST sign on the ridge of the mountain.  

 

Historical Notes

The Outpost sign was dismantled during World War II, and the wreckage of the sign was left in place, buried in the weeds. Even the original foundation and electrical junction boxes survived. The twisted remains were identified by hikers in 2002. *^

 

 

 

 
(1920s)#++# – View showing a Foster and Kleiser Signboard advertising the Oupost Estates.  Sign reads:  HAPPINESS for the whole family - A Development of the C. E. Toberman Company - As Convenient as a Downtown Hotel - As Restful as a Mountain Lodge  

 

Historical Notes

The area became known as an affluent area with many rich and famous residents. Homes had to be designed in Spanish, Mediterranean or California modern style, have red tile roofs, plenty of patios for "outdoor living," and be approved by architectural committee before being built. Most of the original houses have been preserved, and Lower Outpost looks much like it did in the 1920s. *^

Today, the Outpost Estates consists of about 450 homes. It is bordered by Mulholland Drive to the north, Franklin Avenue to the south, Runyon Canyon Park to the west, and Hollywood Heights and the Hollywood Bowl to the east.

 

 

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(1927)^** -  A slightly elevated panoramic view of Hollywood facing northeast as seen from the Roosevelt Hotel.  The street in the middle of the photograph is Hollywood Boulevard, with (Mann's or Grauman's) Chinese Theatre at the bottom of the picture, and the El Capitan Theatre farther away. The "Hollywoodland" sign is visible in the distance. The "Outpost" sign is to the left but out of view.   

 

 

 

 

 

 
(1929)^^ – Closer view looking northeast from the Roosevelt Hotel.  The stage house for the Chinese Theatre stands in the center foreground, terminating in a rectangular structure with eight metal chimney stacks aligned in two rows. Further back, an apartment or office building of approximately five stories stands in the midst of two-story condominium residences. A radio tower can be seen to the right of it. The terrain is hilly and covered with trees, while the Hollywood Hills and  the Hollywoodland Sign can be seen in the background.  

 

 

Barnsdall Park

 
(ca. 1927)* - View looking north from Barnsdall Park at the intersection of New Hampshire Avenue and Hollywood Boulevard.   Los Feliz Elementary School is at the northeast corner.  Vermont is the next street to the right (out of view). The Hollywood Hills can be seen in the distance, with the tallest peak being Mt. Hollywood.  

 

Historical Notes

Aline Barnsdall donated Barnsdall Park to the City of Los Angeles for arts and recreational purposes, including the preservation of the historic architecture and landscape features. Located at the crest of Olive Hill, Barnsdall Art Park overlooks the city of Los Angeles, and the Hollywood Hills, including Griffith Park. The park is centered on the Barnsdall's Hollyhock House designed by architect Frank Lloyd Wright, a National Historic Landmark, Los Angeles Historic-Cultural Monument, and on the National Register of Historic Places in Los Angeles.*^

 

 

 

Hollyhock House

 
(ca. 1927)* - Aerial view showing Barnsdall Art Park and the Frank Lloyd Wright designed Hollyhock House.  At upper center-left is Los Feliz Elementary School.  At upper-right corner is the intersection of Hollywood Boulevard and Vermont Ave.  

 

Historical Notes

Originally designed by Frank Lloyd Wright as a residence for oil heiress Aline Barnsdall, The Hollyhock House was built in 1919–1921. Barnsdall originally intended the house to be part of an arts and theater complex on a property known as Olive Hill, but the larger project was never completed.

Disillusioned by the costs of construction and maintenance, Barnsdall donated the house to the city of Los Angeles in 1927 under the stipulation that a fifteen-year lease be given to the California Art Club for its headquarters, which it maintained until 1942. The house has been used as an art gallery and as a United Service Organizations (USO) facility over the years. Beginning in 1974, the city sponsored a series of restorations, but the structure was damaged in the 1994 Northridge earthquake. It was again restored, and was open to the public as of June 2005.*^

 

 

 

 
(1939)* - View of archway and greenery, Hollyhock House located at 4808 Hollywood Boulevard in Barnsdall Park. The home was built between 1919-1921. Architect: Frank Lloyd Wright. Home has a "pre-Columbian air and stylized hollyhock ornamentation" - Gebhard & Winter, restored by Lloyd Wright (his son).  

 

Historical Notes

Like many houses designed by Wright, it proved to be better as an aesthetic work than as a livable dwelling. Water tended to flow over the central lawn and into the living room, and the flat roof terraces were conceived without an understanding of Los Angeles' rains. The cantilevered concrete also has not stood up well to the area's earthquakes.*^

 

 

 

 
(2005)*^ – Close-up view of Frank Lloyd Wright's Hollyhock House, located at 4808 Hollywood Boulevard.  

 

Historical Notes

Originally designed by Frank Lloyd Wright as a residence for oil heiress Aline Barnsdall, The Hollyhock House is now the centerpiece of the city's Barnsdall Art Park.*^

Hollyhock House was added to the National Register of Historical Places in 1971 - Building #71000143 and designated Los Angeles Historic-Cultural Monument #12 in 1963. The 12-acre Barnsdall Park was designated Los Angeles Historic-Cultural Monument #34 in 1965 and Residence A (Barnsdall Park Arts Center) was designated Los Angeles Historic-Cultural Monument #33 in 1965.

Click HERE to see complete listing of LA Historic-Cultural Monuments.

 

 

 

NE Corner of Hollywood and Vine

 
(1927)^ - View looking toward the northeast corner of Hollywood Boulevard and Vine Street. Pedestrians cross the street as autos and streetcar wait for light to change. This would be the future home of the 12-story Equitable Building, built in 1929.  

 

 

Hollywood Playhouse (later El Capitan Theatre and Avalon Nightclub)

 
(1927)* - Exterior view of the Spanish style Hollywood Playhouse, located at 1735 N. Vine, near the intersection of Hollywood and Vine.  

 

Historical Notes

The Hollywood Playhouse opened for the first time on January 24, 1927.  It was designed in the Spanish Baroque style by the architectural team of Henry L. Gogerty and Carl Jules Weyl in 1926-1927.*^

 

 

 

 
(ca. 1927)* - Facade of the Spanish Baroque style Hollywood Playhouse entrance, designed by Gogerty & Weyl.  

 

Historical Notes

During the Great Depression, the theatre was renamed The WPA Federal Theatre (after the Works Progress Administration), and used for government-sponsored programs.  Later, the theatre hosted numerous CBS Radio Network programs, including Fanny Brice's Baby Snooks show and Lucille Ball's My Favorite Husband program. Lux Radio Theater broadcast condensed movie scripted versions, usually with the movie's original cast performing their movie roles. Ginger Rogers and Ray Milland performed "Lady in the Dark" in 1945.*^

 

 

 

 
(ca. 1927)^^^ – Interior view of the Hollywood Playouse Theatre showing the ornate Baroque designs on walls, ceiling and balcony.  

 

 

 

 
(ca. 1936)* - Exterior view of the Spanish style Hollywood Playhouse, located at 1735 N. Vine St. Gogerty & Weyl designed the theater in 1926. The musical "Ready! Aim! Fire!" is the current show being performed at the theater. Neighboring businesses included a beauty salon (left) and a shirt maker (right). Vine Street streetcar tracks are visible in the foreground.  

 

 

 

 
(1948)*# - Postcard view of the El Capitan Theatre (previously Hollywood Playhouse) featuring Ken Murray's "Blackouts", not to be confused with the El Capitan Theatre on Hollywood Boulevard.  

 

Historical Notes

In the 1940s, 1735 Vine was renamed The El Capitan Theatre, and was used for a long-running live burlesque variety show called Ken Murray's Blackouts. This should not be confused with the nearby movie theatre of the same name and age, the El Capitan Theatre on Hollywood Boulevard, which at the time was known as the Paramount Theatre.

In the 1950s, still under the name of El Capitan, the theatre became a television studio, and it was from a set on its stage that Richard Nixon delivered his famous "Checkers speech" on September 23, 1952. This event is often mistakenly said (especially on the Internet) to have taken place at the El Capitan Theatre on Hollywood Boulevard, though that theater was never a television studio, and in 1952 was operating as a movie house called the Paramount Theatre.

The theater was also home to The Colgate Comedy Hour, the Lawrence Welk Show, and This is Your Life.*^

 

 

 

 
(2007)*^ - Front view of the Avalon (formerly the Hollywood Playhouse) at 1735 N. Vine St.  

 

Historical Notes

The Avalon (or Avalon Hollywood) is a night club and music venue. Located at 1735 N. Vine Street, it has previously been known as The Hollywood Playhouse, The WPA Federal Theatre, El Capitan Theatre, The Jerry Lewis Theatre, The Hollywood Palace and The Palace. It has a capacity of 2,000.*^

Click HERE for a more contemporary view.

 

 

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El Capitan Theatre (Also Paramount Theatre)

 
(1926)* - View showing the newly completed El Capitan Theatre, located at 6838 Hollywood Boulevard adjacent to the Hollywood Masonic Temple (partially in view on the right).  

 

Historical Notes

Completed in 1926, the El Capitan Theatre and Office Building is the third of four major theatres constructed by prominent real estate developer C. E. Toberman, known as the “Father of Hollywood.” +##

 

 

 

 
(ca. 1926)^^^ - Close-up view showing the Spanish Baroque style designs on the side face of the El Capitan Building.  

 

Historical Notes

The six-story building was designed in the elaborate Spanish Baroque style by the renowned firm of Morgan, Walls, & Clements, who incorporated retail and office space into the upper floors. Noted theatre architect G. Albert Lansburgh designed the elaborate interior.+##

 

 

 

 
(1926)* - View of the auditorium and ceiling of the El Capitan Theatre, designed by Morgan, Walls and Clements Architects in east Indian-inspired style. Interior is designed by G. Albert Lansburgh. The orchestra pit is also in view.  

 

Historical Notes

The El Capitan Theatre opened as a playhouse and was one of the premier dramatic stages in the area throughout the 1920s and most of the 1930s, hosting over 120 plays. The 1,550-seat theatre didn’t screen its first movie until 1941, when it hosted the world premiere of Citizen Kane.+##

 

 

 

 
(1926)* - View of the auditorium of the El Capitan Theatre from the stage, looking toward the orchestra and balcony seating.  

 

Historical Notes

For a decade it presented live plays with productions including such legends as Clark Gable and Joan Fontaine. By the late 1930s, El Capitan felt the economic effects of the Depression, showcasing fewer and fewer productions. This period saw a cycle of experimentation with entertainment. In an effort to boost attendance at the theatre, its management attempted to lure revues, road shows and benefits. Despite these efforts, business was faltering.*^

 

 

 

 
(ca. 1937)* – View looking southwest across Hollywood Boulevard showing various businesses, including the Spanish Colonial revival style building that is occupied by both Barker Bros. and the El Capitan Theatre.  

 

Historical Notes

When Orson Welles was unable to locate a theatre owner willing to risk screening Citizen Kane, he turned to El Capitan, and in 1941, Citizen Kane had its world premiere there. The theater then closed for one year.*^

 

 

 

 
(1942)* - View of the box office at the Paramount Theatre (previously El Capitan) in Hollywood.  

 

Historical Notes

The building was remodeled in the modern style, and reopened on March 18, 1942 as the Hollywood Paramount Theatre. Its inaugural film presentation was Cecil B. DeMille's Technicolor feature Reap the Wild Wind, starring Ray Milland, John Wayne, Paulette Goddard and Raymond Massey.

The theater remained the West Coast flagship for Paramount Pictures until the studio was forced by the U.S. Supreme Court's decision in the antitrust case U.S. vs. Paramount Pictures, et al. to divest itself of its theater holdings. After this, the Hollywood Paramount was operated by United Paramount Theatres for some years, then by a series of other companies, culminating with ownership by the Pacific Theatres Circuit in the 1980s.

By the late 1980s, movie studios were once again being allowed to own theatres, and in 1989 the Walt Disney Company entered into a lease agreement with the Pacific Circuit for the Paramount and the smaller Crest Theatre in Westwood. These theaters became Disney's flagship houses. They spent $14 million on a complete renovation of the Paramount, restoring much of the building's original decor as well as the theater's original name. El Capitan reopened in 1991 with the premiere of The Rocketeer.*^

 

 

 

 
(ca. 2009)+## - View showing the El Capitan Theatre as seen from in front of the Dolby Theatre and Hollywood-Highland Complex. Now showing: A Christmas Carol. The Disney Soda Fountain and Studio Store is seen on the left.  

 

Historical Notes

The theatre reopened in 1991 with 998 seats and has since been the showcase for Disney motion pictures. Screenings are often preceded by live stage show productions, most using the theatre’s Wurlitzer organ, which once graced the now-demolished San Francisco Fox Theatre. Street-level office space, once home to a Barker Brothers furniture store, is now a Disney Store and fountain shop.+##

In 1990, the El Capitan Theatre Building was declared LA Cultural-Monument No. 495.

 

 

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Roosevelt Hotel

 
(ca. 1929)*# - Street view looking west showing the Roosevelt Hotel located at 7000 Hollywood Boulevard. Cars are parked in front of the one-story shops along the south side of Hollywood Boulevard. The blade sign of Grauman's Chinese Theatre can be seen on the right edge of photo.  

 

Historical Notes

The historic Hollywood Roosevelt Hotel was designed by Architects Fisher, Lake & Traver in Spanish Colonial Revival style.  Named after United States president Theodore Roosevelt, the hotel was financed by a group including Douglas Fairbanks, Mary Pickford and Louis B. Mayer.*^

 

 

 
(1927)^*^# – View looking south on Orange Drive toward Hollywood Boulevard where The Hollywood Roosevelt Hotel stands tall. The hotel is located at 7000 Hollywood Boulevard. Click HERE for contemporary view.  

 

Historical Notes

The hotel first opened its doors on May 15, 1927. It cost $2.5 million ($33.9 million in today's money or dollars) to complete this twelve-story building, which holds 300 rooms and suites.*^

 

 

 
(1930s)* - Exterior night view of the Roosevelt Hotel located on the southwest corner of Hollywood Boulevard and Orange Drive.  

 

Historical Notes

The Hollywood Roosevelt Hotel hosted the presentation of the 1st Academy Awards in 1929 inside its Blossom ballroom. Later ceremonies were much larger than this banquet for 250, so there was never an attempt to host the awards at the hotel a third time.*^

 

 

 

 
(1935)#**# - Film fans stand on the roof of the Roosevelt Hotel and watch a big Hollywood movie premiere take place across the road at Grauman’s Chinese.  

 

 

 

 

 
(ca. 1930s)#^* - View of the Roosevelt Hotel located 7000 Hollywood Boulevard as seen from the courtyard of Grauman's Chinese Theatre.  

 

Historical Notes

Marilyn Monroe was a resident at the Hollywood Roosevelt for two years when her modeling career took off. Her first magazine shoot was taken in the Roosevelt.

Clark Gable and Carole Lombard paid five dollars a night for their penthouse; it is now named the Gable & Lombard Penthouse. There is also a Marilyn Monroe Suite at the hotel.*^

 

 

 
(2016)++# - View looking across Hollywood Boulevard toward the Roosevelt Hotel as seen from the front of the Chinese Theatre.  

 

 

 

 

 
(2016)++++ - View looking up toward the Hollywood Roosevelt Hotel with mature palm tree in the foreground.  

 

Historical Notes

There have been many rumors of hauntings at this hotel. Some involve celebrities, such as Marilyn Monroe, Montgomery Clift, and Errol Flynn.  Others involve a little girl in a blue dress.  There have also been reports of cold spots, photographic "orbs", and mysterious phone calls to the hotel operator.*^

 

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Hollywood Boulevard

 
(1928)#**# – View looking east on Hollywood Boulevard from McCadden Place.   The vertical sign for Grauman's Egyptian Theatre can be seen on the right, with the Pig ‘n’ Whistle restaurant next door—both are still there. Across the street is a sign for the Myer Siegel & Co. department store.  

 

 

 

 

 
(1928)* - View of traffic traveling on Hollywood Blvd. at Cahuenga in 1928. The Security Trust and Savings Bank building is on the far left side of the photograph.  

 

 

 

 
(1928)* – View looking north on Wilcox Avenue toward Hollywood Boulevard, where the Warner Bros. Theatre on the NE corner is under construction. The Bank of Italy is on the right, SE corner.  

 

 

Warner Bros. Theatre

 
(1928)^^^ - Postcard view showing the Warner Bros. Theatrre on the NE corner of Hollywood and Wilcox at the time of its opening. Banners hang from the face of the building.  

 

Historical Notes

Originally known as the Warner Bros. Theatre or Warner Hollywood Theatre, the Italianate beaux arts building was designed by architect G. Albert Lansburgh with approximately 2,700 seats. It opened on April 26, 1928, showcasing the studio's early Vitaphone talking film Glorious Betsy, starring Conrad Nagel and Dolores Costello.*^

 

 

 
(ca. 1928)* - Full exterior view of the Warner Bros. Building and Theatre (Later the Hollywood Pacific Theatre), located at 6423-6445 Hollywood Boulevard. This photo was taken shortly before Warner Bros. installed two radio transmitting towers on top of the building.  

 

Historical Notes

The Warner Bros. Building still stands today. In 1993 it was designated Los Angeles Historic-Cultural Monument No. 572 (Click HERE to see complete listing).

 

 

 
(1928)*** - View showing the entrance to the Warner Bros. Theatre.  Now Playing:  Tenderloin with Dolores Costello and Conrad Nagel, “On the Vitaphone”.  

 

Historical Notes

On the great stage between screenings of the feature was the Ceballos Revue with Daphne Pollard, Harry Kelly and the girls. #*^#

 

 

 
(1928)* - Interior view of the Warner Bros. Theatre at the time of its opening. A very large organ can be seen to the left in the orchestra pit.  

 

Historical Notes

The  murals were designed by Albert Herter.*^

 

 

 
(1930)##^* – View looking west on Hollywood Boulevard showing the Warner Bros. Building and Theatre on the right with its two newly installed roof-mounted radio transmitter towers. The call letters 'KFWB' can bee seen on one of the towers.  

 

Historical Notes

Warner Bros. owned radio station KFWB and in 1930 installed its radio transmitter towers on top of the Warner building, which remain to this day. Though covered by "PACIFIC" lettering, the original "WARNERS" lettering can still be seen inside each tower.*^

 

 

 
(1930)* - View of the intersection looking north on Wilcox Avenue at Hollywood Boulevard. A sign announces Warners Theatre and KFWB at the intersection, along with Hendrickson and Landstrom Clothing and William Stromberg Jeweler in the building on the northeast corner.  

 

Historical Notes

Warner Bros. Hollywood Theatre has also been known as Warner's, the Warner, Warner Cinerama, Warner Hollywood Cinerama, the Hollywood Pacific and the Hollywood Pacific 1-2-3. #*^#

 

 

 
(1930)* - Exterior with crowds for matinee performance of Joe E. Brown in "Top Speed" at the Warner Bros. Theatre on Hollywood Boulevard. The lettering on top of the marquis reads: SEE & HER VITAPHONE.  

 

Historical Notes

Warner Bros was riding high in the late 1920s as a result of their Vitaphone sound-on-disc process. They got their studios converted first, their theatres wired for sound, and a long string of hit sound films into theatres around the country. #*^#

 

 

 

 
(1936)^^^ – Postcard view showing a premier night at the Warner Bros. Theatre on Hollywood Boulevard.  

 

 

 

 

 
(1941)* - Crowds in front of theatre on night of March 12, 1941, for world premiere of "Meet John Doe".  

 

Historical Notes

The Hollywood Pacific Theater (previously Warner Bros.) finally closed its doors as a full-time cinema on August 15, 1994. This was mostly due to water damage to the basement caused by the construction of the Hollywood Subway Red Line and structural damage caused by the 1994 Northridge earthquake.

The theatre is now occupied by Ecclesia Hollywood Church. Given the recent revitalization of Hollywood Boulevard in the early 21st century, it is often speculated that the theatre will one day be restored as a film palace.*^

 

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Highland and Franklin

 
 (1928)^^ - View of Hollywood looking south from the head of Highland Avenue near Franklin Avenue. Automobiles navigate the unlined road that curves to the right through residential Hollywood. A street sign reads: "Caution Speed Limit 15 Miles".  

 

 

 

 
(ca. 1903)^ - Panoramic view of Hollywood from Whitley Heights circa 1903, looking southwest from Highland and Franklin Avenues 25 years earlier. The curved configuration of Highland between the East and West sections of Franklin Ave still exists today. The larger structure, seen on the left side of the photo, is the famous Hollywood Hotel. It is situated on the Northwest corner of Hollywood Blvd. and Highland Ave. Today, this is the site of the Hollywood and Highland Center, the current home of the Academy Awards.  

 

 

 

 

 
(ca. 1903)#^* – Same image as above but annotated to show street names and significant building locations.  

 

 

 

Before and After

 
(ca. 1903)* - Highland at Franklin Ave looking southwest.    (1928)^^ - Highland at Franlin Ave looking southwestly.

 

 

 

Cahuenga Pass

 
(1928)* - View of Cahuenga Pass in 1928. There appears to be no lanes for the cars to travel in.  

 

 

 

 
(1928)^** - View of Cahuenga Pass Road, south from the Summit. Railway tracks are on the left.  

 

 

 

 
(ca.1928)* - Cars travel in both directions through the Cahuenga Pass near the Hollywood Bowl. The roadway through the Pass, the lowest through the Santa Monica Mountains, connects the Los Angeles Basin to the San Fernando Valley. The hills are truncated where they were excavated for the road bed. On the left, a large hillside billboard advertises the The Outpost development in the Hollywood Hills. A roadside vendor is setup near the Hollywood Bowl parking sign on the right.  

 

 

 

 
(ca. 1930)#^ - Aerial view of Cahuenga Pass looking northwest. Whitley Heights is at the left. The Hollywood Bowl is located at center left (out of view).  

 

 

 

 

 
(ca. 1930)##+ – View showing Pacific Electric car #710 inbound from the San Fernando Valley through Cahuenga Pass.  The streetcar is at the Hollywood Bowl exit at the corner of Highland Ave and Cahuenga Blvd., heading south on Highland to Santa Monica Blvd.    

 

 

Click HERE to see more Early Views of Cahuenga Pass

 

 

 

Annetta Court Apartments

 
(ca. 1928)^^ - View of the Annetta Court Apartments at 5154 Sunset Boulevard in Hollywood. A divided sidewalk runs from the foreground to the background at center. A light-colored archway with the name of the apartments can be seen over the sidewalk in the foreground. And although the apartments themselves are long gone, the street side palms survive and are among the tallest in Hollywood.  

 

Historical Notes

Today a Retirement and Assisted Living Home (Brier Oak on Sunset) stands at the 5154 Sunset location. Click HERE for contemporary view.

 

 

Muller Bros. Service Station

 
(1928)* - A customer gets full service at the gas pumps at Muller Bros. Service Station on Sunset Blvd.  

 

Historical Notes

The Muller family is one of Hollywood’s pioneers. Jacob Muller came to Hollywood in 1893, establishing the first meat market in Hollywood, across from the present Cinerama Dome on Sunset Boulevard. He sold the market in 1907 and established the first ice company in Hollywood, selling that business in 1913. The family’s original house was built Sunset Boulevard at Ivar. This site later became the location of  the RCA Building, built by the Muller Family in 1963. (currently the Los Angeles Film School Building).

Jacob Muller’s sons, Walter and Frank, opened the Muller Bros. Service Station in 1920.^*^*

 

 

 
(1938)*# - View of what appears to be a 1937 Cadillac LaSalle Opera Coupe being attended to in "full service" at the Muller Brothers Service Station at 6380 Sunset Boulevard in Hollywood.  

 

Historical Notes

The Muller Brothers Service Station was located on the south side of Sunset Boulevard on 4 acres, where the Cinerama Dome Theater is now located. Opened in 1920 by the Muller brothers, Walter and Frank, this became the largest service station in the world (including a large automobile supply center), employing 120 people by 1937. Celebrities, from Rudolph Valentino to Clark Gable, came by regularly to get gas or just work on their cars. In 1963 the site was sold for the Cinerama Dome Theater, and, at that time, an eventual hotel.^*^*

Click HERE to see more Early Views of LA Gas Stations.

 

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Hotel Christie

 
(1928)* - Panoramic view of Hollywood, looking east over Hollywood Blvd. from the tower of Hollywood First National Bank Building's northeast corner at Highland Avenue. The Hotel Christie, at 6724 Hollywood Boulevard, is at right. The hotel is divided into three towers. Three dormers with rounded pediments project above the roofline.   

 

Historical Notes

Haldane H. Christie was a pioneering auto parts manufacturer who started out producing axles and springs. In 1914, he sold his Michigan-based car top company to Henry Ford and moved to Los Angeles.

Here, he quickly became a real estate developer specializing in property along Hollywood Boulevard and in the Hollywood Hills.

In 1920, he commissioned construction of Hollywood's first 'modern' luxury hotel (Hotel Christie) at the southwest corner of Hollywood Boulevard and McCadden Place.^^#

 

 

 
(ca. 1928)* - Looking west on the blvd. from Grauman's Egyptian Theatre. On the left street side are signs for: Grauman's, Citizen's National Trust & Savings Bank, the Hotel Christie and in the distance the El Capitan Theatre. On the right side in the distance is the First National Bank Building.
 

 

Historical Notes

The eight-story Georgian Revival building with steeply pitched gable roofs was considered Hollywood's first skyscraper when it opened in 1922. Architect Arthur R. Kelly, best known at the time for his residential designs, created three brick towers connected to ground-level shops.

The Christie Hotel boasted amenities that included steam heat and individual bathrooms for each of its 100 guest rooms — a first for Hollywood. The hotel’s Greenwich Village Café was a popular gathering spot for the film industry people in the 1920s.^^#

 

 

 
(ca. 1925)^^ - View looking at the southwest corner of Hollywood Boulevard and Las Palmas Avenue showing the Paulais Café. The cafe has a large, elaborate sign affixed to its roof, which reads "Paulais" in underlined script letters. Three women and one man can be seen sitting on a bench outside the cafe, and several other people can be seen standing on the sidewalk, near several early model automobiles parked on the side of the road. Next to the cafe, a sign reading "Graumans" can be read vertically in front of a theater. The Christie Hotel can be seen west of the theatre.  

 

Historical Notes

Haldane Christie continued his ownership of the hotel and his realty work until his death in 1941 at age 71. In 1945, the Hotel Christie was renamed the Drake Hotel and later became the Hollywood Inn.  These days, the structure is owned by the Church of Scientology.^^#

 

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(1928)^^ - View of Hollywood Boulevard looking west from McCadden Place. In the distance can be seen Grauman's Chinese Theatre. To the right is the 13-story Art Deco/Gothic style First National Bank Building located on the northeast corner of Highland and Hollywood Blvd.  

 

 

 

 
(1928)^ - View of Hollywood Boulevard west from McCadden Place. First National Bank Building stands tall on the northeast corner of Highland and Hollywood Blvd. In center of the photo is the Montmartre Cafe, the first nightclub in Hollywood.  

 

 

Montmartre Cafe

 
(1924)* - The Montmartre name is on the top and the corner of the building, and over the doorway on the right. To the left are the doorways of a hair store, and of the C.E. Toberman Co. Six windows across on the second floor each have individual shade awnings.  

 

Historical Notes

Eddie Brandstatter was one of Hollywood's greatest early restaurateurs. A native of France, he worked in Paris, London and New York restaurants before moving to Los Angeles in the 1910s. In 1923 he built the famous Cafe Montmartre, designed by Meyer and Holler, at a cost of $150,000. This establishment was described as "the center of Hollywood life", where stars usually frequented, and which was the place to see and be seen.

 

 

 
(ca. 1928)* - Exterior view of the Montmartre Cafe, located at on Hollywood Blvd. between Highland and McCadden. It has a large lighted sign on top, and another which features Roy Fox's Orchestra. Crowds of people are waiting in line to get into the Cafe.  

 

Historical Notes

Eddie Brandstatter was "Host of Hollywood" and catered to Hollywood stars in the 1920s and 1930s. He was owner and manager of the fashionable Montmartre Cafe, Embassy Club and Sardi's.*

 

 

 
(1930)* - A large crowd in the Montmartre Cafe is variously standing, dancing or seated at tables.  

 

Historical Notes

in 1932 Brandstatter declared bankruptcy and sold Montmartre. At one point, he was charged with grand theft in a dispute with Hollywood real estate developer C.E. Toberman for having stolen furnishings, drapes, china, and a large "nude statue" of a woman, as well as other valuables and was convicted, though he was given two years probation after returning the property. In 1933 he bounced back and opened Sardi's, only to be again convicted for illegally selling "stimulants" at the establishment. Sadly, Sardi's Restaurant was destroyed by fire on November 2, 1936. The last venue Brandstatter opened and operated was the Bohemian Grill on Vine. On January 20, 1940 Brandstatter's wife, Helen, found the once-famous restaurateur dead in their home garage in Sherman Oaks. He had committed suicide by carbon monoxide poisoning in his car. He was 54.*

 

RKO Studios

 
(ca. 1928)* - Exterior view of the Gower Street entrance of the RKO Studios, located on Gower Street and Melrose Avenue in Hollywood, 789 N. Gower St.  

 

Historical Notes

RKO (Radio-Keith-Orpheum) was one of the Big Five studios of Hollywood's Golden Age. The business was formed after the Keith-Albee-Orpheum (KAO) theater chains and Joseph P. Kennedy's Film Booking Offices of America (FBO) studio were brought together under the control of the Radio Corporation of America (RCA) in October 1928.  RCA chief David Sarnoff engineered the merger to create a market for the company's sound-on-film technology, RCA Photophone. By the mid-1940s, the studio was under the control of investor Floyd Odlum.*^

 

 

 

 
(ca. 1940)^^^ - Postcard view of the RKO Studios located on the northeast corner of Melrose Ave and Gower St.  

 

Historical Notes

RKO has long been celebrated for its series of musicals starring Fred Astaire and Ginger Rogers in the mid-to-late 1930s. Actors Katharine Hepburn and, later, Robert Mitchum had their first major successes at the studio. Cary Grant was a mainstay for years. The work of producer Val Lewton's low-budget horror unit and RKO's many ventures into the field now known as film noir have been acclaimed, largely after the fact, by film critics and historians.*^

 

 

 

 
(ca. 1940)##^* – Closer view showing the RKO (Radio-Keith-Orpheum)Studios at Melrose and Gower, N/E corner. The film "Victoria the Great" is being advertised. Click HERE for contemporary view.  

 

Historical Notes

The RKO Sutdios produced two of the most famous films in motion picture history: King Kong and Citizen Kane.

 

 

 

 
(1940s)* - Aerial view looking north showing the RKO Radio Pictures' lot in Hollywood.  The intersection of Melrose Avenue and Gower Street is at lower-left.  

 

Historical Notes

Adjacent to the lot on the east was Paramount Studios, and the property line to the north is still Hollywood's oldest cemetery.

 

 

Hollywood Storage Co. Building

 
(1928)* - Front view of the Hollywood Storage Co. Building, located at Highland Avenue and Santa Monica Boulevard.  

 

Historical Notes

The 11-story Hollywood Storage Co. building at 1025 N. Highland Ave. was the tallest structure in Hollywood when erected in 1925.  It was purchased by Bekins in 1939. The building was also home of the Evening Herald radio station, KMTR.*

 

 

 
(1928)* - Side view of the Hollywood Storage Co. Building, located at 1025 N. Highland Ave.   

 

Historical Notes

Morgan, Walls & Clements designed this Spanish revival style building, completed in 1925.*

 

 

 
(ca. 1929)^^ - Panoramic view of Hollywood looking north from the Hollywood Storage Co. Building, located at Santa Monica Boulevard and Highland Avenue. Several commercial lots and buildings fill the foreground half of the image, while residential blocks full of houses fill the rest, terminating in several high rise buildings in background right before the mountains. Highland Avenue is visible on the right. A lone "H" stands legible on the mountains to the right.  

 

 

 

 
(1930)* - Panoramic view of Hollywood looking northwest on a very clear day. The Hollywood Storage Co. Building, located at Santa Monica Boulevard and Highland Avenue, is the tallest building in the area.  

 

 

 

 

Lockheed Aircraft Company (Hollywood)

 

(1927)#** – On July 4, 1927 the first Lockheed Aircraft Company Vega 1, NX913, Golden Eagle, made its maiden flight with test pilot Edward Antoine (Eddie) Bellande at Rogers Airport (The airport was at the present location of Wilshire Boulevard and Fairfax Avenue).

 

 

 

 

 
(1927)#** - The first Vega 1, NX913, Golden Eagle, nears completion at the Lockheed Aircraft Company, Hollywood.  

 

Historical Notes

Twenty-eight Vega 1 airplanes were built by Lockheed Aircraft Company at the factory on Sycamore Street in Hollywood before production of the improved Lockheed Vega 5 began in 1928 and the company moved to its new location at Burbank, California. #**

 

 

 

 
(1928)* - Seven men, identified as the "old gang", stand next to a plane at the Lockheed plant in Hollywood. From left to right: Frank Crane, Jimmy Gerschler, Dan Egger, Jerry Vultee, Dick Von Hake and Vard Wallace.  

 

Historical Notes

Originally called the Alco Hydro-Aeroplane Company, Lockheed was founded in 1912 by brothers Malcolm and Allan Loughead. Its next incarnation was Loughead Aircraft Manufacturing Company and was located in Santa Barbara. In 1926, following the failure of Loughead, Allan Loughead formed the Lockheed Aircraft Company in Hollywood. The Great Depression greatly changed the aircraft industry and in 1934, Robert E. Gross was named chairman of the new company, the Lockheed Corporation, which had relocated to Union Airport (Bob Hope Airport) in Burbank, California.*

Click HERE to see more in Aviation in Early L.A.

 

 

Hollywood Bowl

 
(1928)* - View of Hollywood Bowl's shell, stage, seating and adjacent hills with development. Built in 1928. Architect: Lloyd Wright.  

 

Historical Notes

For the 1928 season, Wright built a fiberglass shell in the shape of concentric 120-degree arches, with movable panels inside that could be used to tune the acoustics. It was designed to be easily dismantled and stored between concert seasons; apparently for political reasons this was not done, and it did not survive the winter.*^

 

 

 
(1929)* - Closeup view of the Hollywood Bowl. An orchestra rehearses on stage. Photograph dated July 12, 1929.  

 

Historical Notes

For the 1929 season, the Allied Architects built the shell that stood until 2003, using a transite skin over a metal frame. Its acoustics, though not nearly as good as those of the Lloyd Wright shells, were deemed satisfactory at first, and its clean lines and white, almost-semicircular arches were copied for music shells elsewhere. As the acoustics deteriorated, various measures were used to mitigate the problems, starting with an inner shell made from large cardboard tubes (of the sort used as forms for round concrete pillars) in the 1970s, which were replaced in the early 1980s by large fiberglass spheres (both designed by Frank Gehry) that remained until 2003. These dampened out the unfavorable acoustics, but required massive use of electronic amplification to reach the full audience, particularly since the background noise level had risen sharply since the 1920s.

The appearance underwent other, purely visual, changes as well, including the addition of a broad outer arch (forming a proscenium) where it had once had only a narrow rim and the reflecting pool in front of the stage that lasted from 1953 till 1972. Sculptor George Stanley designed the Muse Fountain. He had previously done the Oscar statuette.*^

 

 

 
(1929)* - Closeup view of the Hollywood Bowl. An orchestra rehearses on stage. Photograph dated July 12, 1929.  

 

 

 

 
(1929)* - A slightly higher aerial view of the Hollywood Bowl during the same rehearsal.  

 

 

Click HERE to see more in Early Views of the Hollywood Bowl

 

 

 

Santa Monica Boulevard

 
(1929)* - An early picture of Hollywood looking northeast from Santa Monica Boulevard and Highland Avenue. An electric steetcar is seen in the distance.  

 

 

 

 
(1929)^^ - View looking west on Santa Monica Boulevard from Gower Street.  Cable-car tracks are seen running though its center.  

 

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(ca. 1929)^^ – View showing four men standing by the entrance to the Thomas J. Dunnigan Real Estate Office located at 926 Vine Street, on the southeast corner of Vine and Barton.  

 

 

Vine Street Theatre

 
(1929)* - View looking south on Vine Street showing the Vine Street Theatre (today the Ricardo Montalbán Theater) located at 1615 North Vine Street. Banner hanging from the front of the theatre reads. "Andy Wright presents, Philadelphia, all star cast. Matinees, Thurs. and Sat." Note the Savoy Auto Park adjacent to the theatre. Parking rates are 15 cents a day or $4.00 a month.
 

 

Historical Notes

Named the Wilkes Brothers Vine Street Theatre in honor of its builders, the Beaux Arts live-performance theater was built in 1926-1927. It was the first legitimate Broadway-style theatre in Hollywood. The theatre was designed by architect Myron Hunt, also known for other notable buildings including the Rose Bowl, Cal Tech, and the Ambassador Hotel. 

The premier performance was “An American Tragedy” by Theodore Dreiser. The theater also had a memorable run of the play “Philadelphia” during its early years. The theater features orchestra, mezzanine, loge and balcony seating.^^*

 

 

 
(1929)* - View looking north on Vine Street showing the Vine Street Theatre. The Taft Building is seen on the right, located at the southeast corner of Hollywood and Vine. Banner reads, "Andy Wright presents, Philadelphia, all star cast, Matinees Thurs. and Sat."
 

 

Historical Notes

During the depression of the 1930’s, the theater was renamed Mirror and became a cinema. It later became the Lux Theatre when it was purchased by the Columbia Broadcasting (CBS) for local affiliate KNX radio and was used as a live performance radio auditorium and local radio station.^^*

 

 

 

 
(1932)#**# – Panoramic view showing the Mirror Theatre (previously Vine Street Theatre).  Now showing: “Ladies of the Jury”, “Freaks” with Leila Hyams, and a Laurel & Hardy short. Large sign on top face of building reads: "ALL THE BEST TALKIES...AND ONLY 25 CENTS.....KIDDIES 10 CENTS"  

 

Historical Notes

When the Vine Street Theater opened at 1615 Vine St, just south of the Hollywood and Vine corner, it was a legitimate live theater. In March, 1931 it became a cinema called the Mirror, under the direction of Howard Hughes' Hughes-Franklin circuit. #**#

In 1936 the theatre became the Lux Radio Playhouse where the long-running “Lux Radio Theater” hosted by Cecil B. DeMille was made.*^

 

 

 

 
(ca. 1930s)*^ - A studio audience gathers prior to a live production at Hollywood's Lux Radio Playhouse (previously the Vine St. Theatre and Mirror Cinema).  

 

Historical Notes

Lux Radio Theatre was a long-run classic radio anthology series that was broadcast on the NBC Blue Network (1934-35); CBS Radio (1935-54), and NBC Radio (1954-55). Initially the series adapted Broadway plays during its first two seasons in New York before it began adapting films after moving to its Hollywood Vine Street location (1936). These hour-long radio programs were performed live before studio audiences. The series became the most popular dramatic anthology series on radio, broadcast for more than 20 years and continued on television as the Lux Video Theatre through most of the 1950s.*^

 

 

 

 
(1948)*^ - Composite wide-angle view showing performance of Lux Radio Theatre before a studio audience. The actor standing at center-right is future U.S. President Ronald Reagan.  

 

Historical Notes

Lux Radio Theatre strove to feature as many of the original stars of the original stage and film productions as possible, usually paying them $5,000 an appearance. In 1936, when sponsor Lever Brothers (who made Lux soap and detergent) moved the show from New York City to Hollywood, the program began to emphasize adaptations of films rather than plays. The first Lux film adaptation was The Legionnaire and the Lady, with Marlene Dietrich and Clark Gable, based on the film Morocco. That was followed by a Lux adaptation of The Thin Man, featuring the movie's stars, Myrna Loy and William Powell.*^

 

 

 

 
(1954)* - Opening night--celebrities and first nighters are shown arriving at the new million dollar theater, the Huntington Hartford Theater, for its premiere performance. Movie fans standing in bleachers cheer as screen stars enter the lobby of the theater. Photo dated: October 2, 1954.  

 

Historical Notes

In 1954, George Huntington Hartford bought the building for $200,000 from Columbia Broadcasting and extensively remodeled and “modernized” the theater at an additional cost of $750,000. He streamlined the building from the facade, to the lobby and through the auditorium. Hartford ran the theater successfully for ten years.^^*

 

 

 
(1954)^^ – Interior view of the Huntington Hartford Theater during the opening of "What Every Woman Knows" with Helen Hayes.  

 

Historical Notes

In 1964 Hartford sold the theater to James Doolittle (owner of the Greek Theater in the Hollywood Hills) for $850,000. Cary Grant had tried to buy the building, but lost over Doolittle. The theater was (not surprisingly) renamed the Doolittle Theater.

Eventually, the theater would run down into disrepair. Until bought in 2000 by the U.C.L.A. performing arts group “Nosotros”, an organization founded in 1970 by actor Ricardo Montalban “to help fulfill the goals of persons of Spanish-speaking origin in the motion picture and television industry”. The founding board included members Desi Arnaz, Vicki Carr and Anthony Quinn. In May 2004 the theatre reopened as The Montalbán. ^^*

 

 

 

 
(2010s)###^- Bird's-eye view of the Montalbán Theatre located at 1615 N. Vine Street.  The Broadway-Hollywood can be seen on the southwest corner of Hollywood and Vine.  

 

Historical Notes

In 2005, Nike entered into a partnership with the Montalbán Theatre and the theatre has since been used for special venues such as promotional events.

 

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(n.d.)#**# – A shot taken from up in the Hollywood hills overlooking a nighttime Hollywood, its glowing lights illuminating the brightest and shiniest, while its shadows cloaks its secrets and shame.  The American Legion Building (built in 1929), with its pyramid-shaped roof, can be seen in the foreground.  

 

 

American Legion Building

 
(1929)^^# – Front view of the new American Legion Building located at 2035 N. Highland Avenue on the day of its dedication, July 4, 1929.  

 

Historical Notes

Hollywood Post 43 began in an old church building on El Centro Street near Hollywood Boulevard and grew to the largest in the State, having 1,285 registered members. It was organized in 1920.^^#

The American Legion is an organization of U.S. war veterans formed in Paris on March 15–17, 1919, by delegates from all units of the American Expeditionary Forces. Their main mission is to sponsor programs that improve veterans communities, such as scholarships, veterans help programs (i.e. ending veterans homelessness), and youth sports. They also promote national security, patriotism, and devotion to veterans.*^

 

 

 
(1929)^^# - Visitors enter the new American Legion Post No. 43 building in Hollywood, located on the west side of Highland Avenue, one block south of the Hollywood Bowl.  

 

Historical Notes

The Egytian Revival-Morroccan Deco building was designed by architects Gene and Joe Weston and completed in 1929 at a cost of $270,000. The three-story 33,000 square foot facility has an ornamental entrance of colored terra cotta, set in a solid concrete, with broad steps and terraces in the foreground and graceful tower and pyramid surmounting it. 

In 1989, the Hollywood American Legion Building was dedicated LA Historic-Cultural Monument No. 462 (Click HERE to see complete listing).

 

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Hollywood Ralphs

 
(1929)* - Exterior view of a Ralphs Grocery Store located at 5711-17 Hollywood Boulevard, in Hollywood. The market, built in 1929, was designed by Morgan, Walls & Clements in a Gothic and churrigueresque revival design.  

 

Historical Notes

Ralphs Grocery Company was founded in 1873 by George Albert Ralphs with the original store being located at Sixth and Spring Streets. The company employed notable architects in designing its stores.*^

 

 

 
(ca. 1937)* - View of the Ralphs Market on Hollywood Boulevard as it appeared circa 1937. Photo by Herman J. Schultheis.  

 

Historical Notes

Click HERE to see an 1886 photo of George Ralphs standing in front of his original store in the Early LA Buildings (1800s) Section.

 

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Hollywood Mandarin Market

 
(1929)* - Corner view of the Mandarin Market, a Chinese-style drive-in market located at 1234-1248 Vine Street, in Hollywood. A delivery truck full of crates of "Dorado Club," a brand of club soda, is parked on the street.
 

 

Historical Notes

The Mandarin Market on Vine Street, built in 1929, was touted as being one of the first drive-in markets of its kind in Los Angeles. The architect was Henry L. Gogerty, who later designed "gliding acoustical walls" for classrooms, and assembly line buildings for Howard Hughes' Spruce Goose project.^*^#

 

 

 
(ca. 1929)^^ - Closer view of the Mandarin Market located on the northeast corner of La Mirada Avenue and Vine Street. The complex includes a Texaco service kiosk (center), a bakery (far right), a full meat and produce market, and a restaurant (left) known at this time as "Chinatown." Note the ornate two-lamp streetlight on the corner.  

 

Historical Notes

In the late 1920s and 1930s, the two-lamp streetlight seen above was installed at various locations throughout the City, but nowhere more than in the Hollywood area. Click HERE to see more in Early Los Angeles Streetlights.

 

 

 
(1931)##^ – Postcard view of the Mandarin Market showing the details of its pagoda-style design. In the foregrond can be seen the Mandarin Bakery.  

 

Historical Notes

Rather than have delivery trucks crowding the front of the marketplace, each store had a back entrance for deliveries.^*^#

 

 

 
(1929)* - View of the Mandarin Market, a Chinese-style drive-in market located at 1234-1248 Vine Street, in Hollywood The meat and produce sections, identified by signs placed up high near the roof line, are labeled from left to right: Meats, Vegetables and Fruits. The market's "The Mandarin" sign mounted on the roof states that the market is a "Wm. M. Davey Co. Enterprise."  

 

Historical Notes

The property sold in 1932 for $175,000 and, after some modifications, became Hollywood Ranch Market.^*^#

 

 

Hollywood Ranch Market (Mandarin Market)

 
(ca. 1932)* - Street view of the Hollywood Ranch Market (previously Mandarin Market). Note how the rooftop pagoda-style elements remain from the original structure.  

 

Historical Notes

The Hollywood Ranch Market (Mandarin Market) took on a new look when the original outdoor area was enclosed. The Pagoda-style roofline remained intact around the periphery.

 

 

 
(1961)* - Exterior view of the Hollywood Ranch Market, located at 1234-1248 Vine Street. The market with its large neon sign and the neighboring Art Linkletter Playhouse are clearly visible. Remnants of the original Chinese influenced architecture from when the building served as the Mandarin Market are visible above the roof line in the center of the photograph.  

 

Historical Notes

It wasn’t unusual to see such personalities as Frank Sinatra, Ava Gardner or Red Skelton or at the Hollywood Ranch Market’s snack bar. Steve Allen used to broadcast his shows from his studio close by. ^#^^

Click HERE to see more Early Views of the Hollywood Ranch Market.

 

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(1929)* - Exterior view of Mullen and Bluett Clothing Company, located on Hollywood Boulevard and Vine. It is a two-story brick building with shingled roof showing three prominent peaks and numerous windows. A plaque for Roos Bros. is located on the building to the right, and a plaque for B. H. Dyas Co. is located on the building to the left. Note the street-railroad tracks in middle of the main road.  

 

 

 

 
(1920s)**## – View showing the upscale clothing store, Roos Brothers at 6320 Hollywood Boulevard near Vine Street.  Note the Art Deco detailing applied to the façade of the building. The Mullen & Bluett Building is at left.  

 

Historical Notes

In a later incarnation, the Roos Brothers building became the second Newberry five-and-dime located in Hollywood.**##

Click HERE to see the first J.J. Newberry in Hollywood.

 

 

 
(ca. 1930)^^^ - Close-up view showing the Roos Bros storefront entrance with its Art Deco zig-zag columns.  

 

 

 

 
(ca. 1929)* - Exterior view of Hollywood Chamber of Commerce at 6520 Sunset Boulevard. View shows the cast stone ornament over the main entrance and lower windows. Designed by Morgan, Walls & Clements, the building has a Spanish Colonial Churriqueresque design. Date built: 1925.  

 

Historical Notes

The Hollywood Chamber of Commerce was formed in 1921 to replace the old Board of Trade. A five-day membership drive resulted in 2,517 members. The first order of business for the new organization was to raise funds for the grading and installation of 20,000 seats to create the Hollywood Bowl.

In 1932, the Santa Claus Lane Parade was first sponsored by the Chamber. In 1978, the parade was given a new look, renamed the Hollywood Christmas Parade and grew to national prominence as the nation’s largest celebrity parade with national television distribution for the first time.

In 1949, the Chamber entered into an agreement with the Department of Recreation and Parks to repair and rebuild the Hollywood Sign and to remove the “land” so that it would spell “Hollywood”. The cost was $4,000. A second restoration was done by the Chamber in 1973. #*^

 

 

 
(1929)* - View of the Out of Door Bowling Alley, located on Sunset Boulevard and Ivar Street. Several people are shown standing at the base of their lanes, taking aim with their bowling balls. Behind them, bowlers wait for their turn or just watch the progress of the game. The Hollywood Laundry Service Co., Inc., a very large laundry and dry cleaning building, can be seen across the way, which runs the length of the street.  

 

 

 

 
(1929)* - Ten pins are neatly lined in the foreground as if anticipating their doom.  A woman with a hat can be seen ready to release her bowling ball down the lane.  

 

Historical Notes

The Muller Bros. Service Station can be seen in the background. It was located on Sunset Boulevard right where the Cinerama Dome stands today.

 

 

 
(ca. 1928)#**# – View looking northeast at the Hollywood Hills and the ‘Hollywoodland Sign’ from McCadden Place south of Yucca Street.  

 

 

 

 
(ca. 1928)* - View looking north of the Hollywood Hills from the Hollywood Athletic Club on Sunset. The white structure in the upper right of the photo is the Mulholland Dam.  

 

 

 

 
(1929)* - Panoramic view of Hollywood and its surrounding areas. Partial view of the Hollywood Playhouse at 1735 N. Vine Street, is in the lower-left corner of this photo. The tall building at center-right, with several storefronts, is the Mountain States Building. The Mulholland Dam is in the far background (upper-right).  

 

 

 

 
(1928)* - Looking towards the Art Deco style Mountain States Building (now Yucca Vine Tower), located at 6305 Yucca Street. Architect: H. L. Gogerty, 1928. The building to the left is a Piggly Wiggly market and the Mulholland Dam is visible in the upper-center.  

 

 

 

 
(1929)* - Front view of Mulholland dam in the Hollywood Hills, the most beautiful of a score of storage basins in Los Angeles' water system. The HOLLYWOODLAND sign can clearly be seen in the background.  

 

 

 

 

 
(ca. 1930)^^# – Photo by Hiromu Kira titled “The Thinker," showing a man sitting on the vast, elegantly curved wall of the Mulholland Dam.  

 

 

Click HERE to see more in Early Views of the Mulholland Dam and Hollywood Reservoir

 

 

 

 

 
(ca. 1929)* - An overview of the hills with a Mulholland Dam and Hollywood Reservoir off on the right, partially hidden by the steamshovel sitting at the top of the near hill. The back of the HOLLYWOODLAND sign and its supporting brackets can be seen in the bottom of the photo.  

 

 

 

 
(ca. 1929)* - Panoramic view of Hollywood and West Los Angeles, as seen from Mt. Lee. Lake Hollywood (Hollywood Reservoir) and “Hollywoodland” is in the foreground.  

 

 

 

Chateau Elysée

 
(1929)* - Exterior view of the French style Chateau Elysée, located at 5930 Franklin Avenue in Hollywood.  

 

Historical Notes

The Chateau Elysée was built as a luxury hotel/apartment house in 1929 by Eleanor Ince, the widow of Thomas H. Ince, the successful pioneer silent film producer.  Designed by eminent architect Arthur E. Harvey as a prominent seven story replica of a 17th Century French-Normandy castle, the Chateau Elysée remains as the most impressive of several Hollywood chateaux built during the area's booming 1920s.*^

 

 

 
(1929)* - Street view looking up toward the Chateau Elysée in Hollywood.  

 

Historical Notes

The Chateau Elysée Hotel provided a home for many of the artists that were then being drawn to Hollywood. Residents included some of the most famous names of the 1930s and 40s. Most notably Bette Davis, Errol Flynn (room 211), Edward G. Robinson (room 216), Carol Lombard (room 305), Edgar Rice Burroughs (room 408), Humphrey Bogart (room 603), Clark Gable (room 604), Ginger Rogers (room 705), Ed Sullivan (room 501), Gracie Allen and George Burns (room 609) along with Lillian Gish, Katharine Hepburn, George Gershwin, and Cary Grant.*^

 

 

 
(1951)* - Exterior view of the Chateau Elysée as it appeared in 1951.  

 

Historical Notes

In 1969 the building began being used as the Church of Scientology's home for its Celebrity Centre; since 1973 the building has been owned by the Church. Several floors are now hotel rooms (for church members only), with the building's topmost stories serving as offices. Free guided tours of the historic building are available to the general public.

The Château's conservatory building houses the acclaimed French rococo-styled restaurant, Renaissance.*^

On September 23, 1987, the City of Los Angeles declared the building as Historical National Monument No.329 (Click HERE to see complete listing).

 

 

Bancroft Junior High School

 
(1929)* - Aerial view of a neighborhood of Hollywood showing Bancroft Junior High School (the year it opened), located at 929 N. Las Palmas Avenue, and surrounding residences. Highland Avenue is seen in the background and Las Palmas is identified in the foreground. The school later came to be called Bancroft Middle School.  

 

Historical Notes

The Bancroft Middle School opened its doors in 1929 as Hubert Howe Bancroft Junior High School. When it first began, it had 700 students enrolled and was staffed with 16 teachers. Today, the school has grown to 1,400 – double its size – and has 55 teachers on staff.

Although the school is located in Los Angeles, it services many children from surrounding areas including West Hollywood.^*#

 

 

Hollywood-Vine Service Station

 
(1930)* - The Hollywood-Vine service station and parking garage, with free parking provided for nearby establishments, including Pig 'n Whistle, Dyas Restaurant, and Hertz car rentals. Not only did attendants park customers' car, they also took their laundry for dry-cleaning.  

 

 

 

 
(ca. 1930)* - Close-up view of the cashier for the Hollywood-Vine service station and parking garage.  This resembles today’s all-in-one gas stations and mini-markets. Click HERE to see more Early Views of LA Gas Stations.  

 

 

 

Pig Stand Drive-in

 
(ca. 1930)* - Night view of Pig Stand drive-in restaurant, with customers posing for the photo. The Broadway-Hollywood on Hollywood and Vine is in the background.
 

 

Historical Notes

We didn't quite invent the drive-in restaurant in Los Angeles -- the Pig Stand in Dallas beat us by a year -- but we did do more than anyone to perfect the concept and ensure its spread. After all, we were living in the most car-oriented part of the country, and we did set the standard for what was cool.^^#

A Dallas entrepreneur named Jessie G. Kirby built the first Pig Stand along a Dallas-Fort Worth Highway in October 1921. It was a hit with hungry drivers, and soon it became a chain. (The slogan: "America's Motor Lunch.") Kirby and his partners made one of the first franchising arrangements in restaurant history, and Pig Stands began cropping up everywhere. By 1934, there were more than 130 Pig Stands in nine states. (Most were in California and Florida.) Meanwhile, the chain kept innovating. Many people say that California's Pig Stand No. 21 became the first drive through restaurant in the world in 1931, and food historians believe that Pig Stand cooks invented deep-fried onion rings and chicken-fried steak sandwiches.*##

 

 

 
(ca. 1930)* - Exterior view of Pig Stand drive-in restaurant, with the carhops posing for the photo. The drive-in was located on the southeast corner of Sunset and Vine.  

 

Historical Notes

Wartime gasoline and food rationing hit the Pig Stands hard, and after the war they struggled to compete with newer, flashier drive-ins. By the end of the 1950s, all of the franchises outside of Texas had closed. By 2005, even the Texas Pig Stands were struggling to survive—only six remained in the whole state—and by the next year they had all disappeared.*##

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

 

* * * * *

 

 

 

 
(ca. 1930)* - Looking north on Wilcox Ave. at Hollywood Blvd. Cars are lined up at both sides of Wilcox Ave. At the corner is the Innes Shoe Co.  

 

 

 

 
(ca. 1930)* - View looking west on Hollywood Boulevard at Cahuenga. Kress Drug Co. is visible in the lower right corner.  

 

 

Musso and Frank(s) Grill

 
(1928)^#^^ – View of Hollywood Boulevard looking east between Las Palmas and Cherokee avenues.  At left is the Musso & Franks Grill, oldest restaurant in Hollywood.   

 

Historical Notes

On September 27, 1919, The Hollywood Citizen ran an announcement about the opening of Frank Toulet’s new restaurant, Frank’s Café at 6669 Hollywood Blvd. In time, Toulet partnered with restaurateur Joseph Musso. The pair sold the restaurant in 1927 to two Italian immigrants, Joseph Carissimi and John Mosso, who years later moved The Musso & Frank Grill next door to 6667 Hollywood Blvd., where it still stands. #*#*

 

 

 
(ca. 1930)#*^* - View of Musso and Franks Grill located at 6667 Hollywood Boulevard, between Cherokee and Las Palmas Avenues.  

 

Historical Notes

By the 1930s Musso and Frank was firmly established at the center of Hollywood's cultural life. Stanley Rose's essential bookstore was right next door to the restaurant, and many of the writers of the hard-boiled fiction that he preferred, who hung out in the back room of the bookstore, spent endless hours in the bar of Musso and Frank; e.g. James M. Cain, John Fante (who frequented the restaurant with famed journalist and historian Carey McWilliams), Raymond Chandler, and Nathanael West. Other literary regulars include William Saroyan, Dashiell Hammett, Erskine Caldwell, Dorothy Parker, William Faulkner, F. Scott Fitzgerald, Elliot Paul, and Donald Ogden Stewart. *^

 

 

 

 
(ca. 1940s)*#*^ - View of a woman walking in front of Musso and Frank Grill in Hollywood.  

 

Historical Notes

By the 1940s the restaurant was so firmly identified with the Los Angeles literary scene that aspiring writers, e.g. Charles Bukowski, would drink there in a conscious effort to imitate their role models. Eminent California historian Kevin Starr has said that a list of writers who frequented Musso and Frank resembles "the list of required reading for a sophomore survey of the mid-twentieth-century American novel." *^

 

 

 

 
(ca. 1954)^##* – View showing a Yellow Cab in front of Musso and Frank Grill, 6667 Hollywood Boulevard.  

 

Historical Notes

Musso and Frank has been essential in the social life of the Los Angeles film industry.  The restaurant kept a separate back room for its film industry clientele, which included not only screenwriters, but actors, producers and directors as well, including Tom Mix, Charlie Chaplin, Harry Warner and his brother Jack, Greta Garbo,  Humphrey Bogart, Marilyn Monroe, Douglas Fairbanks, Mary Pickford, Orson Welles, Rudolph Valentino, and Budd Schulberg.*^

 

 

 

 
(2007)*^ - View of Musso and Frank Grill in Hollywood as seen from across the street. On the roof of the restaurant is the name, plus the lettering: "Since 1919. Oldest in Hollywood".  

 

Historical Notes

Surrounded by the blight of tattoo parlors and cheesy knickknack shops following Hollywood’s decline and tourist trap transformation, Musso & Frank Grill literally has not changed. The waiters have been doing their thing for 25 years, and the booths are probably the same ones that Frank Sinatra, Edward G. Robinson, and Greta Garbo used.#^*^

 

 

 
(2016)##^* – Neon sign reads: Musso & Frank Grill – Oldest in Hollywood – Since 1919  

 

Historical Notes

The current operators of Musso and Frank are the descendants of earlier owners from the 1920’s. Frank Toulet and his family opened the restaurant, Frank’s Cafe in 1919. Later the name changed to Musso-Frank Grill. In 1927, John Mosso and Joseph Carissimi purchased the restaurant. When John Mosso died in 1974, his daughter, Rose, and Joseph Carissimi’s daughter-in-law, Edith, ran the restaurant.

Years later, in 2009, the Carissimi family sold their interest to the descendants of John Mosso. Today, John Mosso’s great-grandsons, Mark Echeverria and Jordan Jones are proprietors, while Mark is restaurant manager. #*#*

 

* * * * *

 

 

Pantages Theatre

 
(1930)^^^ - View of the Pantages Theater still under construction in 1930, located on the northwest corner of Hollywood Boulevard and Argyle Avenue. The tall building to the west is the Equitable Building, located on the northeast corner of Hollywood and Vine.  

 

Historical Notes

The Pantages Theater is designated as Los Angeles Historic-Cultural Monument No. 193 (Click HERE to see complete listing).  The theater was was designed by B. Marcus Priteca (exterior) and Anthony Heinsbergen (interior) for Alexander Pantages.

The original plans for the Pantages were for a 12-story building: 2 floors dedicated to theater and 10 floors of office space. Completion of the 10 upper floors was halted due to the 1929 stock market crash during construction.*^

 

 

 
(1930)* - Exterior view of the Pantages Theatre located at 6233 Hollywood Boulevard shortly after it opened. Click HERE to see contemporary view.  

 

Historical Notes

The Pantages Theatre, formerly known as RKO Pantages Theatre was the last theater built by the vaudeville impresario Alexander Pantages. The palatial Art Deco theater opened on June 4, 1930, as part of the Pantages Theatre Circuit.*^

 

 

 

 
(1930)* - View of the foyer at the Pantages Theatre with a close look at the ceiling.  

 

Historical Notes

Alexander Pantages sold the Hollywood landmark in 1932 to Fox West Coast Theaters. In 1949, Howard Hughes acquired the Pantages for his RKO Theatre Circuit and moved his personal offices to the building's second floor.

From 1949 through 1959, the theatre hosted the American motion picture industry's annual Academy Award Ceremonies.*^

 

 

 
(ca. 1930)* - Interior view of the Pantages Theatre's grand lobby. Notice the ornate, detailed workings throughout. Perhaps the most impressive of any Los Angeles theatre.  

 

Historical Notes

The grand lobby is a magnificent poly-chromatic fan-vaulted space, that is 110 feet wide and 60 feet deep. It is decorated in a zigzag geometric design in gold and henna shades. At each end is a 20 feet wide stairway, lined with vaguely Egyptian and Assyro-Babylonian styled statues, one of which depicts in an Art Deco style, a camera crew filming. The entire area was illuminated by three huge Moderne frosted glass chandeliers hanging from three star-shaped domes.^^*

 

 

 
(1930)* - View of the auditorium interior of the Pantages Theatre.  

 

Historical Notes

The auditorium was designed to seat 3,212, but it opened with extra legroom and wider seats to give more comfort for its 2,812 patrons.^^*

 

 

 
(1930)* - A partial view of the balcony seats inside the Pantages Theatre. Note the details of the ornamental Art Deco designs on the walls and ceiling.
 

 

Historical Notes

The crowning beauty of the dazzling Art Deco style decorations which cover almost every inch of the theatre interior, by interior designer/muralist Anthony B. Heinsbergen, is the double ceiling made in a series of ‘busy’ fretwork sunray effects which converge from the center, from which is hung a tremendous frosted glass and bronze chandelier.^^*

 

 

 
(1930)* - Close-up view of fans awaiting the arrival of celebrities attending gala opening premiere of "Florodora Girl", starring Marion Davies.  

 

Historical Notes

The Pantages Theatre was one of the first movie houses to be built after the advent of talking pictures and once boasted the most elaborate sound system in the world. It opened with Marion Davies in “The Floradora Girl” on screen, and “The Rose Garden Idea” a Franchon & Marco stage revue.^^*

 

 

 
(ca. 1930)^^^ - Nighttime view of the front entrance to the Pantages Theater. Frank Fink's Apparel Shop is seen on the left.  

 

Historical Notes

The Pantages Theater continued to be a major venue for road show movies into the 1970s. From 1965, it was operated by Pacific Theatres. It closed as a movie theater in January, 1977, and re-opened the following month with Bubbling Brown Sugar, the first of the many stage productions that have since become its regular fare.*^

 

 

 
(1931)* - The lighted marquee at night of the Pantages Theatre. The main feature is 'Tarnished Lady' with Tallulah Bankhead and Clive Brook.  

 

Historical Notes

Today, the Pantages Theater is operated by an arm of the Nederlander Organization and is one of Los Angeles' leading venues for live theater (the five highest-grossing weeks in L.A.'s theatrical history were all shows at the Pantages). The theatre has recently presented large-scale Broadway musicals such as Disney's The Lion King, which ran at the theatre for over two years, and hosted the long-running Los Angeles production of the Broadway musical Wicked.*^

* * * * *

 

 

N/W Corner of Hollywood and Vine

 
(1929)*# – Panoramic view showing the northwest corner of Hollywood and Vine. Signboard on the one-story building reads: Universal Pictures - Carl Laemmle Presents  

 

Historical Notes

In 1915, at the northwest corner of Hollywood and Vine Street sat the home of early Hollywood pioneer and land speculator George Hoover. Hoover was part of the L.A. Pacific Boulevard and Development Company. He was also president of Hollywood's first bank - the Bank of Hollywood and was one of the builders of the fashionable Hollywood Hotel (located at Hollywood and Highland). 

In 1925 German immigrant and movie maker Carl Laemmle purchased the property from George Hoover for $350,000. Laemmle was president of Universal Pictures Corporation and had a very successful movie studio in the San Fernando Valley. In 1932, Carl Laemmle opened the one story CoCo Tree Café on this corner.

In 1940, restaurateur Sidney Hoedemaker of the Pig 'n' Whistle - Melody Lane chain, leased the northwest corner Hollywood and Vine transformed it into a Melody Lane Restaurant. This would be followed by Hody's Restaurant in 1954, Howard Johnson's in 1971, and the Brown Derby in the 1980s. The site became a slew of struggling retail and nightclubs such as; Premiere, Jack's Sugar Shack, the Deep, and finally the Basque nightclub. In April 2008 the building went up in flames and the lot has been empty since. #^**

 

 

Click HERE to see more of the N/W Corner of Hollywood and Vine

 

 

 

 

 
(1930)* - View looking west on Hollywood Boulevard showing the Equitable Building and its surrounding area. Pantages Theatre is seen further east.  

 

Historical Notes

Located on the northeast corner of Hollywood and Vine, the 12-story Equitable Building was built in 1929.  The Gothic Deco commercial tower was designed by Aleck Curlett.*^

 

 

 
(1937)* - Aerial view looking west down Hollywood Boulevard from the intersection with Argyle Avenue.  On the left is the Strother Funeral Directors building, and beyond it a Dodge Plymouth motor car dealer, and past that, the Taft Building. Going down the right side of the street we see the Pantages Theatre, and beyond that the Equitable Building and then the Guaranty Building.  

 

 

 

 
(1936)* - View looking west on Hollywood Boulevard showing the Pantages Theatre on the right. One block to the west is the intersection of Hollywood and Vine where three taller buildings stand (Equitable Building, Taft Building, and Broadway-Hollywood Building).  

 

 

 

 
(1936)^^ - Another view looking west toward the intersection of Hollywood and Vine showing the Pantages Theatre, Equitable Building, Taft Building, and Broadway-Hollywood Building.  

 

 

 

 
(1930s)* - View looking south on Vine Street toward the intersection with Yucca Street.  The Equitable Building can be seen in the distance on the northeast corner of Hollywood and Vine.  

 

 

 

 
(ca. 1930)* - View looking south on Vine Street showing the Equitable Building on the northeast corner of Hollywood and Vine with its large marquee hanging on the edge of the building. At left can be seen the sign of Pantages Theatre (also built in 1930) which stands just east of the Equitable Building and fronts Hollywood Boulevard. The 12-story Taft Building is across the street on the southeast corner.  

 

Historical Notes

The Equitable Building of Hollywood was the second high-rise office building built at the intersection of Hollywood and Vine and would be a symbol of the new money that was being invested in Hollywood. The Taft Building, across the street was the first (built in 1927).+**

 

 

 
(ca. 1937)^^^ - View looking at the northeast corner of Hollywood and Vine showing the 12-story Equitable Building. A portion of the Pantages Theatre is at far right.  

 

Historical Notes

When the Equitable Building was planned in 1927, it would be required to conform to a certain height limit of 150 feet on the NE corner which was for many years the site of a house and later a used auto lot. In 1926 a one-story bank building was built on the site and served the intersection there until the property was cleared for construction in 1929. +**

 

 

 

 

* * * * *

 

 

 

More Historical Early Views

 

 

Newest Additions

 

 

Early LA Buildings and City Views

 

 

History of Water and Electricity in Los Angeles

 

 

* * * * *

 

References and Credits

* LA Public Library Image Archive

^^ USC Digital Library

^* California Historic Landmark Listing (Los Angeles)

^ California Historical Society Digital Archive

** Retronaut - Hollywoodland Sign

^^^California State Library Image Archive

***The Story of Hollywood by Gregory Paul Williams

**^Table Magazine: LA Observatory

^**Huntington Digital Library Archive

^*#West Hollywood Patch: Bancroft Middle School

^^*Cinema Treasures:Ricardo Montabaln Theater

^^#LA Times: 'Swing in, pig out, drive off'; Hollywood American Legion Post 43; Christie Hotel; Making Waves - Japanese American Photography, 1920-1940

*##History.com: Pig Stands

#**This Day in Aviation: Lockheed Vega 1

+**HollywoodHeritage.com: The Equitable Building of Hollywood

+##Los Angeles Conservancy: El Capitan Theatre

#*^Hollywood Chamber of Commerce History

#^*Pinterest.com: Old Hollywood

##^UC Santa Cruz Digital Archive

##+Facebook.com: Los Angeles Railroad Heritage Foundation

*^*MTA Transportation and Research Library Archives

^*^LA Street Names - LA Times

****Wehadfacesthen.tumblr.com

++++Stuff.co.nz: Roosevelt Hotel

**##MartinTurnbill.com: Roos Bros. Clothing Store

^*^*HollywoodHeritage.com: The Muller Family Foundation

^*^#Facebook.com - Bizarre Los Angeles

*^^^Pinterest.com: Hollywood History

*#*^PlantTrout.worldpress: Musso and Frank Grill

^#^^Facebook.com - Vintage LA: Musso & Franks Grill; Hollywood Ranch Market

#***Chinese Theatre History

#^**The Go Go's: N/W Corner of Hollywood and Vine

#**#Facebook.com: Garden of Allah Novels, Martin Turnbull

#++#OutpostEstates.com

#*^#Historic Hollywood Theatres: Warner Bros. Hollywood Theatre

#*#*Musso and Frank History: mussoandfrank.com

###^Timeout.com: Ricardo Montalban Theatre

#*^*Hidden Los Angeles: Musso and Frank's Grill

*# Skyscraperage.com. - Griffith Observatory; Muller Bros. Service Station; El Capitan Theater; Hollywood and Vine, 1929; Outpost Sign

*^ Wikipedia: Hollywood; Hollywood Athletic Club; Hollywood Bowl; Grauman's Chinese Theatre; Grauman's Egyptian Theatre; Pantages Theatre (Hollywood); John Hanson Ford Theatre; 20th Century Fox; Samuel Goldwyn.Studio; Barnsdall Art Park; Greek Theatre; Griffith Observatory; Cinerama Dome; Ralphs; Hollywood Palladium; Hollywood and Vine; Hollywood Masonic Temple; Hollywood Pacific Theatre; Max Factor; West Hollywood; Brown Derby; Hollywood Christmas Parade; Mt. Lee; Château Élysée; Hell's Angels (film); Morocco (1930 film); KFWB; Hollywood Playhouse (Avalon Hollywood); RKO Pictures; Musso and Frank Grill; Gene Harlow; Hollyhock House; Hollywood Roosevelt Hotel; Lux Radio Theatre; American Legion; El Capitan Theatre

 

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