Early Views of Glendale

Historical Photos of Early Glendale
1 2 / next / single page
(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.  


Historical Background

The area was long inhabited by the Tongva people (or "People of the Earth"), who were later renamed the Gabrieleños by the Spanish missionaries, after the nearby Mission San Gabriel Arcángel.

In 1798, José María Verdugo, a corporal in the Spanish army from Baja California, received the Rancho San Rafael from Governor Diego de Borica, formalizing his possession and use of land on which he had been grazing livestock and farming since 1784. Rancho San Rafael was a Spanish concession, of which 25 were made in California. Unlike the later Mexican land grants, the concessions were similar to grazing permits, with the title remaining with the Spanish crown.*^




(ca. 1900)^ - Panoramic view of Glendale looking northeast toward the Verdugo Hills.  Only a few houses are seen.  


Historical Background

In 1860, José María Verdugo's grandson, Teodoro Verdugo, built the Verdugo Adobe, which is the oldest building in Glendale. The property is the location of the Oak of Peace, where early Californio leaders including Pio Pico met in 1847 and decided to surrender to Lieutenant Colonel John C. Frémont.

Verdugo's descendants sold the ranch in various parcels, some of which are included in present-day Atwater Village, Eagle Rock, and Highland Park neighborhoods of Los Angeles.*^




(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.  


Historical 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. Residence to the north lived in the Casa Verdugo community.

Glendale incorporated in 1906 and annexed Tropico 12 years later, in 1918.

In March of 1926, a vote for annexation passed and Casa Verdugo also became a part of the city of Glendale.



(ca. 1915)^ - Panoramic view of the Glendale as seen from Bee Rock in Griffith Park.  




(ca. 1900)^ - View showing an oak tree (‘The Oak of Peace’) at the Catalina Verdugo adobe in Glendale which was General Andres Pico's camp site before he surrendered to General John C. Fremont.  


Historical Notes

Here was drafted the Treaty of Cahuenga on January 12, 1847, signed the following day in Cahuenga Pass. When the home was owned by Dr. and Mrs. Ernest G. Bashor, they named it "El Roble de la Paz" ('The Oak of Peace').

Although the tree died from natural causes in 1987, remnants can still be seen at its original site.



Casa Verdugo Restaurant

(ca. 1905)^*# – Postcard view showing the Casa Verdugo (orignally Sepulveda adobe) shortly after it was converted into a restaurant. The Verdugo Mountains are seen in the background.  


Historical Notes

The adobe had previously been the home of Fernando Sepulveda and his wife, Rafaela Verdugo de Sepulveda, whose father had owned the vast Rancho San Rafael.   The restaurant was originally to have been called La Ramada (“The Arbor") but soon became known as Casa Verdugo after a Los Angeles reporter incorrectly identified the Adobe as the home of Teodoro Verdugo, Rafaela's nephew.  The name stuck, Casa Verdugo opened on January 21, 1905, and the restaurant was an immediate success.^^




(1905)^v^ – Postcard view showing the original Casa Verdugo Restaurant the year it opened.  


Historical Notes

Leslie C. Brand and Henry E. Huntington purchased hundreds of acres of what had been the famous and vast Rancho San Rafael which included the Casa Verdugo adobe. They decided to remake the old house into a tourist destination in the form of a restaurant specializing in Spanish dishes intended to delight the tourists and give them a real “taste” of old California in the most literal sense of the word.^




(ca. 1905)^^ – View showing a "Tropico & Glendale" electric streetcar outside Casa 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 be seen through the trees.  


Historical Notes

In 1905, the Casa Verdugo restaurant opened in the Sepulveda Adobe, operated by Piedad Yorba Sowl. Brand and Huntington recruited Mrs. Sowl due to her experience in the restaurant industry. Her first restaurant, El Famoso, also served authentic dishes of Mexican origin. The restaurant capitalized on the romanticized image of Old California that became widely popular during the late 19th century. Casa Verdugo quickly became an early tourist attraction in Glendale as evidenced by local ads and postcards of the restaurant. The area around it became a popular destination as evidenced by the growth of the population of Casa Verdugo area in 1910 from 1,200 to 1,500 persons.^^

To make the old adobe accessible to the tourists, Huntington arranged for his Pacific Electric Railway to extend up Brand Boulevard, adding a terminus station at the entrance to the restaurant and its surrounding park, which was named “Casa Verdugo” in honor of Maria Sepulveda’s great-grandfather, Jose Maria Verdugo, the original “Don” of Rancho San Rafael.




(ca. 1905)^ – View showing the Casa Verdugo Restaurant behind a couple of pepper trees. Several people can be seen sitting at a table.  


Historical Notes

Surrounded by pepper trees and other mature vegetation, the picturesque old adobe had a commanding vista towards downtown Los Angeles from its wide sheltering corridor that ran the entire length of the long narrow facade.




(ca. 1905)^*# - Postcard view of entrance to the Casa Verdugo restaurant in Glendale. Olive trees are seen in background. Railroad tracks are seen in foreground.  


Historical Notes

Huntington and his development syndicate expended thousands not only on the adobe itself, but in transforming the surrounding acres into a lush park with meandering pathways winding their way around exotic plantings including varieties of cacti and a fragrant grove of oranges that was intended to represent the type of gardens found in the old California days.^




(ca. 1905)^*# - Eating a Spanish dinner under the pepper trees at Casa Verdugo. View of men and women dining outside at the Casa Verdugo restaurant in Glendale. Lanterns are seen hanging above diners.  


Historical Notes

From the time of its opening in early 1905, the Casa Verdugo was a big hit. Heavily advertised by the Pacific Electric, the Casa Verdugo rode the crest of the wave of public fascination with the romantic days of California’s Spanish and Mexican past and visitors made their way in droves “Out Glendale way” to partake in a Spanish dinner and stroll about the lush grounds.

During its heyday, Casa Verdugo regularly entertained hundreds and sometimes even thousands of visitors at a time including a memorable 1907 Shriners outing that brought 5,000 visiting potentates to the old adobe.^

Within a few years of the restaurant opening a small community had developed and called itself Casa Verdugo after the restaurant.  A commercial district grew along Brand Boulevard and Central Avenue, including a department store, groceries, a meat market, hardware store, drug store, the Mission Theatre and a post office where tourists could have their picture postcards of the restaurant postmarked “Casa Verdugo, California.”  The droves of tourists, and the postcards they mailed home, helped make Casa Verdugo a well-known destination throughout the country; visitors had to see the missions, the Mt. Lowe Railway, Santa Catalina Island and the famous Casa Verdugo.    




(n.d.)^ - Diners at the Casa Verdugo Restaurant with a waiter standing nearby.  


Historical Notes

Both the food and the setting were real treats. Diners could enjoy their peppery selections in a variety of inviting locations, from the fireplace-warmed main sala with its thick adobe walls and old beamed ceiling festooned with strings of red peppers to al fresco settings under venerable pepper trees or vine-covered bowers. A most popular spot was, no doubt, the wide veranda where the pleasure of a sunset dinner was enhanced by the heady scent of orange blossoms wafting through the dusky air.

Although its setting was charming in the extreme, Casa Verdugo’s true success was the result of its exceptional proprietress, Piedad Yorba de Sowl, whom Huntington and Brand had wisely granted a five-year lease to run the property upon its opening in 1905. Under de Sowl, Casa Verdugo rapidly became a “must do” for anyone visiting Southern California.

In 1910, because of a disagreement with de Sowl, the Pacific Electric would not renew her lease and hired another proprietor. de Sowl, however, had both trademarked and copyrighted the name “Casa Verdugo” and now claimed infringement. A nasty court battle followed, which de Sowl decisively won in 1911 and the Pacific Electric was forced to suck lemons and come up with a new name. They ultimately settled on “La Ramada”. de Sowl opened a "New" Casa Verdugo Restaurant in her nearby residence and over the next decade the two restaurants operated side by side in an uneasy truce, but one clearly favored by de Sowl. In evicting de Sowl, the Pacific Electric had naively thought people had come to Casa Verdugo to see a building. They hadn’t. They came for an experience, and de Sowl was the one who provided it.^

On May 1, 1923 the original Casa Verdugo Restaurant (formerly the Sepulveda adobe), located in what is now the 1200 block of North Maryland Avenue, was demolished.


* * * * *



Casa Verdugo Segunda

(ca. 1907)^^  - View showing the Mission Revival-style home of Piedad Yorba de Sowl before it was transformed into the new Casa Verdugo Restaurant.  


Historical Notes

Because of her success at the original Casa Verdugo Restaurant, Senora Piedad Yorba de Sowl and her husband Charles had been granted by a then grateful Pacific Electric the northeast corner of the Casa Verdugo property where, in 1907, they built a beautiful Mission-styled home, which the couple dubbed “Soledad.” 

In 1910, when de Sowl could not get an extension of her lease at the original Casa Verdugo Restaurant because of a disagreement with Pacific Elelctric, she simply reopened “Casa Verdugo” in her former dwelling, taking the staff and most all of the patrons with her, and which she pointedly advertised as “not the railroad place.”




(1910)^v^ – "New Location--Out Glendale Way".  Postcard view showing the ‘New’ Casa Verdugo Restaurant.    


Historical Notes

When Piedad Yorba Sowl moved her restaurant around the corner (literally) after the Pacific Electric Railway declined to renew her lease in 1910, she had a set of postcards printed featuring the new location. This is the first one.




(ca. 1914)** – Postcard view showing the interior dining area of the Casa Verdugo Segunda.  


Historical Notes

Piedad Yoba de Sowl’s new Casa Verdugo brought the same charms that were so successful to Casa Verdugo vieja. As before, diners could choose indoor or al fresco dining. Those choosing indoor seating had their choice of a series of charming spaces, each with its own unique name and personality such as the Indian, the Red or the Green Room. And to make sure diners didn’t have to rely on the hated Pacific Electric to visit the Casa, de Sowl had a beautiful garage constructed, that housed any number of visiting machines in Mission-styled splendor.

Piedad Yoba de Sowl was such a success she opened a “Casa Verdugo  Segunda” at 736 South Spring Street in 1913 so diners in downtown Los Angeles could enjoy the same style food and service found “Out Glendale Way.” 

Operating in this location until April of 1921, de Sowl and the Pacific Electric both sold out to a consortium of three school teacher sisters, Ida , Jeannette and Myrtle Baldwin from Dayton, Ohio.  The combined transaction for the two properties being described as the largest real estate deal to date in Glendale area for the considerable sum of $100,000.  The Casa Verdugo name remained a potent one in L.A. restaurant up into the 1960’s.  By that time, however, Piedad Yorba de Sowl had long passed, dying at the age of 84 in 1948.  Her former home and restaurant, however, has survived, an accomplishment as remarkable as the woman herself, and remains today a treasured landmark in northern Glendale (1235 North Louise Street at the corner of Randolph).^* Click HERE for contemporary view.


* * * * *



Casa Adobe de San Rafael

(1895)^^ - Photographic portrait of Charels and Nellie Bogue in front of the former home of Tomas Sanchez in Glendale. The one-story adobe, located on the back of the Verdugo Ranch one half-mile west of Brand Boulevard, is shown at center, featuring a wrap-around patio and overhang. In the yard in front, Charles is shown seated to the left with Nellie standing at his side. At center, three boys in bolero dress identified as the children of "Charles and John" sit astride a burro while two girls identified as "Ruth and Helen" are pictured in lightly colored dressed farther left. Sanchez lived at the residence between 1872 and 1875.  


Historical Notes

In October 1784, José María Verdugo petitioned Pedro Fages, Governor of Alta California, for a grant of land. This grant was the first and one of the largest made. When parts of Rancho San Rafael were sold, Tomás Sánchez, Sheriff of Los Angeles County, purchased a tract of 100 acres and in 1865 built this artistic adobe of the hacienda type, restored in 1932.



(1936)^ - Exterior view of the Tomas Sanchez adobe, La Casa Adobe de San Rafael, Glendale, in June 1936, following restoration in 1932. The photo shows its Monterey-style corridor (covered porch). It was built by Tomas Sanchez, sheriff of L.A. County, in 1849 on Rancho San Rafael land owned by Fernando and Rafaela Verdugo.  


Historical Notes

Casa Adobe de San Rafael has been designated a California Historical Monument (No. 235). It is located in a city park and is now furnished with furniture, cooking utensils and other relics of its time. Location:1330 Dorothy Dr, Glendale.

* * * * *



Glendale Hotel (later Glendale Sanitarium, Glendale Adventist Methodist Center)

(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.


* * * * *



Casa Verdugo Community

(ca. 1900)^ - Panoramic view of a real estate development sign and office, with horses and carriages. The development is called "Casa Verdugo Villa Tract" and is offered by San Rafael Investment Company.  


Historical Notes

Casa Verdugo was originally a part of the Rancho San Rafael land grant that was given to Jose Maria Verdugo in 1784. Verdugo’s granddaughter, Rafaela Verdugo de Sepulveda, subsequently owned the land after the Great Partition in 1871.

In 1883 the real estate firm Wicks, Wright, Hodgkins, and Watts purchased 500 acres of land from Valentine Mand, which included the Sepulveda Adobe. A portion of the property was sold to clergyman George Baugh in 1886 who subdivided the tract and lived in the Sepulveda Adobe with his family. In 1900, Baugh sold the property to J.D. Bliss who with the help of his brother operated Bliss Ranch on the property.

Finally, in 1903 Leslie Brand, who would become a civic leader in Glendale, purchased Bliss Ranch and 175 acres of surrounding land. In 1904, Brand sold a stake of the tract to Henry Huntington, the owner of the Pacific Electric Railway Company. This resulted in the creation of the Glendale line that ran from downtown Los Angeles to Broadway in Glendale. At the time, the Los Angeles Interurban Railway served as the operator, which was later succeeded by the Pacific Electric Railway. In November 1904, the line was extended a half-mile north along Brand Boulevard to Mountain Street.**



The 'Red Car' comes to Glendale

(1906)^v^ - View showing one of the Pullman “Flyers” of the Pacific Electric Railway Co. leaving the grand depot, 6th and Main streets, on one of the regular thirty-three daily trips to Casa Verdugo. Photo was published in a real estate promotional brochure put out by San Rafael Investment Co.   


Historical Notes

The Glendale Line was pioneered by L.C. Brand and associates starting in October, 1902, through their corporation, "The Los Angeles & Glendale Electric Railway". On June 29, 1903, Brand received a franchise from the Los Angeles City Council for an electric railway line running from Los Angeles to Glendale.  The franchise was soon sold to Henry E. Huntington, owner of Pacific Electric Railway Co., who would bring the "Red Cars" to Glendale by 1904 under the name of Los Angeles Interurban Railway (later changed to Pacific Electric).

A 1906 San Rafael Investment Co. and Pacific Electric Railway promotional brochure reads:

The fame of this ride, decidedly the most picturesque to any suburb, attracts thousands of tourists, requiring many additional cars on Sundays and holidays, while the hundreds of commuters going daily to and from business and home are rapidly increasing in numbers. 

The passage through the city, passing Central Park, traversing Figueroa Street, Lake Shore Drive (today, Glendale Blvd.), skirting Echo Park, through Edendale and the Pass between Elysian and Griffith Parks to the point where the most enchanting of all valley panoramas burst upon the view, is accomplished in fifteen minutes.  The scene is framed on the north, in ascending order, by the San Rafael hills, Verdugo mountains and the San Gabriel range, showing Mts. Lowe and Wilson in the foreground, while far to the east Mt. Cucamonga’s dome and the other snow-capped peaks of the San Bernardino mountains rising eight thousand and nine thousand feet are discovered.  The flight along the borders of Griffith Park, over the trestles spanning Los Angeles River, and through Tropico to the fine depot at Brand Boulevard and Fourth Street (today, Broadway), Glendale occupies but ten minutes. 

Here, midway the broad valley, its beauties and surpassing advantages are fully realized.   But five minutes are required for the remainder of the trip down the center of Brand Boulevard, a thoroughfare 130 feet in width, flanked by seventy-two monoliths, eleven and one-half feet high, capped by electric lights, with the space between the broad cement walks and curbs filled by graceful palms, on to Mountain Avenue.  Here at the end of the line is found the choicest residential portion of the valley, at the foothills.  This is not a picture of a dissolving view, but one as eternal as the everlasting hills.^*




(1906)^* – Map showing the Inter-Urban Railway route from the Huntington Building (aka Pacific Electric Building), located at 6th and Main streets, to Casa Verdugo at Brand Blvd and Mountain Ave.  


Historical Notes

The Inter-Urban streetcar route began at the Huntington Building (aka Pacific Electric Building) in downtown Los Angeles, passing Central Park, traversing Figueroa Street, Lake Shore Drive (today, Glendale Blvd.), skirting Echo Park, through Edendale and the Pass between Elysian and Griffith Parks, over the trestles spanning Los Angeles River, through Tropico and then down the center of Brand Boulevard to the depot at Brand Boulevard and Fourth Street (today, Broadway), and finally further north on Brand to the end of the line at Mountain Avenue, the location of Casa Verdugo.




(1904)^ - Panoramic view looking north toward Glendale along the Pacific Electric line through the Edendale Cut.  


Historical Notes

The Edendale Cut was an unpaved road (some of which is now known as Silver Lake Ct.) and was the former route of the Glendale and Burbank interurban railway lines operated by Pacific Electric. The line crossed Fletcher Drive over a viaduct before continuing along a hillside ledge to the Monte Sano stop at Glendale Blvd. and Riverside Drive.



(Early 1900s)^## – View showing two PE cars of the LA-Glendale Interurban Railway (owned by Pacific Electric) on top of the Fletcher Drive timber bridge.  


Historical Notes

In 1904, a nearly 454 foot long bridge, the Fletcher Viaduct, was built by Pacific Electric over Fletcher Drive, which ran forty feet below. The viaduct stood until 1928 when it was replaced by a steel structure bridge. Click HERE to see more.



(Early 1900s)^ – View looking towards the Pacific Electric LA-Glendale Interurban bridge at Glendale Boulevard running over the Los Angeles River, showing Griffith Park (left), Atwater Village, Tropico and Glendale.  





(1906)^* – Birdseye view of Casa Verdugo Villa Tract and streetcar route which terminated at Brand Boulevard and Mountain Avenue, in front of the Casa Verdugo Restaurant.  


Historical Notes

As a result of transportation innovations and the success of the restaurant, a commercial district was created in the Casa Verdugo neighborhood at the corner of North Central Ave. and West Stocker St. A theatre, various stores, a school, and a post office were established in the area, providing a solid economic foundation and increasing population growth that spurred residential construction. A flurry of developers, companies, and individuals participated in the purchase and subdivision of tracts in Casa Verdugo.

The development of Casa Verdugo was not the effort of any single developer or builder, but rather a number of individuals who produced a network of various tracts. Real estate investor James Wyvell played an active role in the subdivision and development of the neighborhood. From 1906 to 1908, Wyvell subdivided and sold a number of tracts both within and surrounding the proposed district. This included land adjacent to the Casa Verdugo restaurant property and lots sold as home sites to individuals. Wyvell’s own Casa Verdugo tract and the Casa Verdugo Villa tract spoke to the growing identity of Casa Verdugo as its own distinct community. ^^

Within a few years of the Casa Verdugo restaurant opening a small community had developed and called itself Casa Verdugo after the restaurant.  A commercial district grew along Brand Boulevard and Central Avenue, including a department store, groceries, a meat market, hardware store, drug store, the Mission Theatre and a post office where tourists could have their picture postcards of the restaurant postmarked “Casa Verdugo, California.”  The droves of tourists, and the postcards they mailed home, helped make Casa Verdugo a well-known destination throughout the country; visitors had to see the missions, the Mt. Lowe Railway, Santa Catalina Island and the famous Casa Verdugo.   




(1912)#* – Panoramic view of Glendale, looking west from Jackson Street, showing the extent to which the area had grown.  


Historical Notes

Glendale, the Casa Verdugo community, and surrounding area experienced a significant growth spurt beginning around 1904, due in large part to the arrival of the Pacific Electric line.

Casa Verdugo held on to the unique identity that emerged during this time and refused to annex to the city of Glendale for sixteen years. Opponents desired an independent city while those in favor wanted the advantages of utilities and services offered by the larger city. In March of 1926, a vote for annexation passed and Casa Verdugo officially became a part of the city of Glendale on April 17, 1926.


* * * * *



Brand Boulevard

(ca. 1905)^ - Early panoramic view looking north on Brand Boulevard at Fourth Street (later 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 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 also in 1904.

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




(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 Glendale Line was pioneered by L.C. Brand and associates starting in October, 1902, through their corporation, "The Los Angeles & Glendale Electric Railway". On June 29, 1903, Brand received a franchise from the Los Angeles City Council for an electric railway line starting at the Southern Pacific's Arcade Station at Fifth, Central & Ceres Street in Los Angeles via Ceres, Sixth, Olive, Seventh, Figueroa, Second, Lake Shore Ave. (Glendale Boulevard) to Sunset Boulevard, and then northerly to the city limits. In Glendale, the line was to enter via a new thoroughfare, Brand Boulevard, thus creating a new business artery to the west of the then central business section on Glendale Ave. where the steam trains of the Los Angeles Terminal Railroad (U.P.) offered the only transportation via rail to the city.

Brand's company commenced grading on above route in September, 1903 and continued into the spring of 1904. On March 11, 1904, however, Brand sold out to the Los Angeles Interurban Railway Company (LAIU), a Huntington-PE affiliate. The LAIU pushed the road through to completion and the first electric car entered Glendale on April 6, 1904, but a formal celebration was not held until July 2 when great crowds gathered for a Mexican barbecue. A Station was erected in Glendale on the corner of Brand Boulevard & Broadway (seen above).^




(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.  


Historical Notes

The Glendale Line was soon extended east on Broadway to Glendale Avenue where all cars terminated for a short time.

Los Angeles Interurban Railway Company (LAIU) acquired the historic old Verdugo ranch house, more than a hundred years old, in 1904; this was located in North Glendale at the foot of the mountains and LAIU restored the ruins, making Casa Verdugo into one of Los Angeles' most popular restaurants. To serve this new tourist attraction, the Glendale Line was extended up Brand Boulevard to Mountain Avenue in 1904 with very frequent service offered from Sixth & Main Station, Los Angeles.^




(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.  






(1915)^ - View of north Brand from Lexington. The railroad train, "Los Angeles line" makes its way up Brand. Large residential homes can be seen on the left.





(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.  



Click HERE to see more Early Views of Brand Boulevard (1920 +)


* * * * *




Life in Early Glendale

(1908)^ - A picnic for the Concordia Club, a social group, at Verdugo Park in Glendale.  




(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.***^

Click HERE to see more Early Views of the Glendale Police Department (1919 +)




(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.  


* * * * *



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). Glendale Bank occupies the ground floor.  


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.  





(1911)##^ - View of the south side of East Broadway. Before the renaming and renumbering that occurred in 1916, this was the 500 block of West 4th Street. Visible here are: Shaver's Grocery Street, at 532 W. 4th Street, managed by H. G. McBain; Carney's Shoe Store, at 536 W. 4th Street, owned by Dave Carney; and Glendale Market, at 540 W. 4th Street, owned by C. W. Ingledue.  





(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.  





(1910)^ - View of East Broadway in Glendale, looking west from Glendale Avenue.  Street railway track and power lines are seen.  





(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.  





(1926)^^ - View showing cars parked in front of Terminal Market at 123 North Glendale Avenue, Glendale.  




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.




(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. #+#+




(1920s)^*# - View looking N/W on San Fernando Road at Central Ave after Tropico was annexed into the city of Glendale This is the same intersection as previous photo but about 10 years later. The building housing the Bank of Tropico is now Hotel de Lux and a Garage. Note the gas pumps along the curb. Click HERE for contemporary view.  





(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.  



* * * * *




Broadway Elementary School (today John Marshall Elementary School)

(1902)^ - Group portrait of children and adults in front of the Broadway Elementary School located at Broadway and Chevy Chase since 1887. John Marshall Elementary School stands at this site today.  





(n.d.)^ - Picture postcard of the exterior view of Broadway School, which has been located on the same site at Broadway and Chevy Chase since 1887. The school has undergone five different name changes, the current being John Marshall Elementary School, in memory of U.S. Supreme Court Justice John Marshall, and the present-day address is 1201 East Broadway.  





(n.d.)^ - View showing the main entrance of Broadway School, located at Broadway and Chevy Chase in Glendale since 1887.  For several years the main building had picturesque two-story pillars in front, resembling the White House. The pillars were demolished when the east and west wings were rebuilt in 1950.  



Glendale Police Department

(ca. 1919)##^ - Glendale Police Department Motor Division.  Several members of the Glendale Police Department pose with their Indian motorcycles in front of Broadway Elementary School.  





(1920s)^ - A man named Wykoff receives a traffic ticket from a member of the Glendale Police Dept. The photo shows a close-up of the policeman's Harley-Davidson motorcycle.  




(ca. 1920s)^ - A member of the Glendale Police Dept. tips his hat to two women on Broadway, in front of Smith Electric Co.  


Click HERE to see more Early Views of the Glendale Police Department (1938 +)




Glendale City Hall

(1920s)^ - Exterior view of Glendale's City Hall building which also houses its Police Department. Two large pillars stand on each side of the entrance. Note architecture at top and corners of this all brick building.  




Chevy Chase Drive

(ca. 1915)^.^ – View showing Sycamore Canyon Road before it became Chevy Chase Drive.  


Historical Notes

The name Chevy Chase actually comes from an ancient Scottish ballad called "The Ballad of Chevy Chase". The "chase" refers to a hunting party, and the "Chevy" is from the Cheviot Hills, which are located along the English/Scottish border.

Some parts of Chevy Chase Drive were originally named Park Avenue and Sycamore Canyon, but in the mid 1920's a real estate agent named E.R. Austin worked to create an additional entrance into Glendale from Los Angeles and was able to convince L.A. and Glendale officials to change the name of this route to Chevy Chase Drive for the entire length of the street, as well as extend the street in various places. All this combining of names and extending made Chevy Chase Drive the longest street in Glendale.^



East Broadway

(1918)^ - View of E. Broadway looking west at Orange in Glendale.  This is near where the Glendale Galleria is today.  Note the ornate streetlights. Click HERE to see map.  





(ca. 1920)^ – A man stands on the corner of Orange and Broadway in front of the Ralphs grocery store.  





(1921)##^ – View showing cars and businesses, including the D. Filger Building and the Glendale Market, along East Broadway in Glendale. 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.  



Aurora Market

(1920s)^ - View of Aurora Market located in a plaza at the corner of Davis Avenue, in Glendale. Note the clock tower in the corner of the 'L' shaped drive-in market.  


Historical Notes

Southern California was the principal center for the development of drive-in markets between the mid-1910s to the early 1940s. Other notable early drive-in markets included: Mandarin Market (Hollywood), Plaza Market (LA), and the Sunset Clock Market (Beverly Hills).




(1920s)^ - Close-up view showing drive-in Aurora Market with a Van de Kamp's Bakery seen on the right next to a florist.  




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. 1920s)^ - Interior view of the Glendale Union High School library. Book shelves can be seen along the back wall. Also visible are a newspaper rack, dictionary stand, shelving behind the information desk, magazine rack, wooden file cabinet, and tables and chairs.  





(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.^


* * * * *




The City of Glendale Continues to Grow

(1920s)^^ - View showing two men standing in front of an electric locomotive bearing a sign promoting the city of Glendale.   The rail car is parked on the tracks, and bears a banner that reads “I am on my way to Glendale, California. The Fastest Growing City in America”.  





(1920s)^ - Aerial view of Glendale at the foot of the Verdugo Mountains with Verdugo Canyon and the San Rafael Hills on the right. Housing development is encroaching on the citrus groves to the north.  


Historical Notes

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 city's population rose from 13,756 in 1920 to 62,736 in 1930. *^




(ca. 1927)^ - Aerial view of Glendale looking northwest toward the Verdugo Mountains. The intersection of Brand Boulevard and Broadway is in the center. The spires of the Glendale Presbyterian Church are visible to the right of Brand.  





(ca. 1927)^ - Aerial shot over Brand Boulevard looking north toward the Verdugo Mountains. The two tallest buildings in view are the Security-First National Bank (NE corner of Brand and Broadway) and Glendale Presbyterian Church at center-right (NW corner of Louise and Harvard streets).  





(ca. 1925)^ - Panoramic view of Glendale looking northeast from the Lyons Storage building near Central Avenue and Colorado Boulevard.  The Glendale Presbyterian Church with its distinctive bell-clock tower can be seen in the distance.  





(1925)^ - Panoramic view of Glendale from Broadway and Maryland, looking southeast to Forest Lawn Cemetery with a closer view of the Glendale Presbyterian Church. To the right of the Church can be seen Glendale Union High School (built in 1908).  




Glendale Presbyterian Church

(ca. 1924)^ - View of the bell tower with its clock and entrance to the Glendale Presbyterian Church located on the NW corner of Louise and Harvard streets. The church was built in 1923 in an English Gothic Revival style.  





(ca. 1920s)^ - Looking across Harvard Street showing the Glendale Presbyterian Church with its spires and clock tower. This church building no longer exists, however, the corner lot is still occupied by the Glendale Presbyterian Church. Click HERE for contemporary view.   



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.  


Historical Notes

During the 'teens and 'twenties Brand Boulevard grew into a lively, modern, commercial and entertainment street with banks, department stores, movie theaters and automobile showrooms, becoming the city's "Main Street".



(ca. 1923)^ - 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. The 6-story building in the distance is on the northeast corner of Brand and Broadway. It was constructed by Security Trust and Savings Bank in 1923. Glendale Theater can be seen on the right.  


Historical Notes

Security Trust & Savings Bank was founded in 1888 by J.F. Sartori and associates; the bank grew through the development of business and mergers and became Security-First National Bank of Los Angeles (ca. 1931).^




(ca. 1924)^.^ – Street view looking north on Brand Boulevard.  Monarch Auto Supply Co. and a drug store occupy the building on SE corner of S. Brand Blvd and E. Harvard St. seen on the right.  The Glendale Theater can be seen in the distance.  


Historical Notes

Today, the building on the SE corner of Brand and Harvard is occupied by a BevMo! Click HERE for contemporary view.




(1924)^ - View from the middle of Brand Blvd. looking north. Pedestrians waiting just left of the train tracks for the Pacific Electric street car #566 to Los Angeles which is stopped at Broadway. Some of the businesses that can be seen include: "The Owl Drug Co.", "D.L. Gregg Hardware", "Glendale Music" and "Sun Drugs".  




(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/W corner of Brand and Broadway). On the right in the distance, the Alexander Theatre with its original facade is visible.  


Historical Notes

With population growing from 13,756 in 1920 to 62,736 in 1930, Glendale called itself "The Fastest Growing City in America".



(1924)^ -  View of the NE corner of Brand and Broadway in Glendale where the 1923-built Security Trust and Savings Bank stands. Note there are no street traffic 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.  





(1924)^ - View looking north on Brand Boulevard from Broadway showing passengers boarding a Pacific Electric streetcar heading toward downtown Los Angeles.  





(ca. 1924)^ – Postcard view looking east on Broadway at Brand Boulevard.  





(ca. 1924)^ - View looking east on Broadway from Brand Blvd. Streetcar wires are overhead, with tracks beneath. A Glendale State Bank sign is seen on the north, and a drugstore on the south.  




(1930)^ - View looking west on Broadway toward Brand Boulevard where the Security-First National Bank stands (previously Security Trust and Savings Bank) . The Fair Department Store is seen on the right.  




(ca. 1929)^ - View looking south on Brand Boulevard at Wilson Ave. Cars parked diagonally line the street as pedestrians browse the shops. On the right, Lewis Jewelry Co. is visible mid-street, and on the opposite side of the road, the Central Hotel is seen on the corner and behind that, Security Trust & Savings Bank which would become Security-First National Bank circa 1930.  




(ca. 1931)^##- Downtown Glendale, looking south on Brand Boulevard toward Broadway. Security-First National Bank is on the left (originally the Security Trust and Savings Bank).  





(ca. 1931)^ - View looking east on Broadway at Brand Bloulevard with the Security-First National Bank building seen on the northeast corner.  On the southeast corner is Dr. Hamman, Dentist.  Note the STOP/GO semaphore traffic signal at lower-right. Click HERE for contemporary view.  





(1931)^ - View looking at the very busy intersection of Brand and Broadway with the Glendale branch of Security-First National Bank standing on the northeast corner. This was the site of the old electric railroad station. Photo date: January 9, 1931.  


Historical Notes

The NE corner of Brand and Broadway was the site of the Glendale depot of the Los Angeles Interurban railway, 1904-1923. The first six-story building in the city was constructed there by Security Trust and Savings Bank in 1923. Originally, the property was occupied by First National Bank of Glendale.




(1926)^*# – View showing the McDaniel Motor Company Builidng located at 819 Brand Boulevard, Glendale.  The Art-Deco building features a showroom with large display windows and decorative facade. Architect: C. Roderick Spencer.  


Historical Notes

In the years between World War I and World War II, the country entered the age of the automobile, and this Art-Deco style worked particularly well in the expanding California automotive market where dealers competed fiercely for attention and for sales.




(1926)^*# - View of the McDaniel Motor Co. car dealership showing the main showroom and the attached garage bay-style Used Car Department. Advertisement for a Nash Automobile for $999.00.  


Historical Notes

Nash Motors was founded in 1916 by former General Motors president Charles W. Nash who acquired the Thomas B. Jeffery Company. Jeffery's best-known automobile was the Rambler whose mass production from a plant in Kenosha, Wisconsin began in 1902.

The 1917 Nash Model 671 was the first vehicle produced to bear the name of the new company's founder. Nash enjoyed decades of success by focusing its efforts to build cars "embodying honest worth ... [at] a price level which held out possibilities of a very wide market."

Charles Nash convinced the chief engineer of GM's Oakland Division, Finnish-born Nils Eric Wahlberg, to move to Nash's new company. The first Nash engine introduced in 1917 by Wahlberg had overhead valves,  which Nash had learned about while working for Buick. Wahlberg is also credited with helping to design flow-through ventilation that is used today in nearly every motor vehicle.*^



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 YMCA

(ca. 1926)^*# – Postcard view looking at the SE corner of Wilson Avenue and Louise Street showing the newly constructed Glendale YMCA.  


Historical Notes

The Glendale YMCA was founded in 1919.  A massive fundraising drive brought in enough money in 1926 to construct one of the most successful establishments of Glendale. Located at Wilson Avenue and Louise Street the building is an excellent example of Spanish Colonial Revival architecture and was originally designed with an open-air courtyard in the center and an underground swimming pool.  Upper rooms were constructed for housing.^




(1938)#* – View showing a large Eucalyptus tree on the corner in front of the Glendale YMCA building.  The building still houses YMCA today, but the Eucalyptus tree is no longer standing.  Click HERE for contemporary view.  




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.


* * * * *



Glendale News-Press

(ca. 1931)^ - View looking down Brand Boulevard, in Glendale. The Lexington Hotel and Hotel California are the two large buildings across the street. The white building on the left belongs to the Glendale News-Press.  


Historical Notes

The Glendale News-Press was formed when Ira Clifton Copley's Copley Press bought and combined the Glendale Daily Press and the Glendale Evening News in 1905.

Copley sold the News Press and the Burbank Daily Review to Morris Newspapers in 1974; however Morris sold off the papers two years later. Ingersoll Publications bought the papers in 1980.

Page Group Publishing, who had just bought the Orange Coast Daily Pilot and the Huntington Beach Independent, acquired the paper from Ingersoll in 1989. Times Mirror bought the newspaper group in 1993.

The Glendale News-Press covers local news, entertainment and sports in Glendale and La Crescenta-Montrose. With a readership of more than 10,000, it is now published twice-weekly, instead of daily.*^




(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. ++#


Brand Blvd Red Car

(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".  





(ca. 1949)^.^ – Passengers are seen boarding Pacific Electric PCC no. 5026 heading to Subway Terminal in downtown Los Angeles with a second streetcar on adjacent tracks.  





(ca. 1950s)^.^ - View looking east from behind a newstand at the NW corner of Brand Boulevard and Broadway showing passengers boarding the Pacific Electric PCC with the Security-First National Bank in the background.  





(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  



* * * * *





(1927)++# - View looking north from the southeast corner of Western Ave and W. Glenoaks Blvd, Glendale.  A morning three-car train of PE 500-class interurbans stands ready to whisk its riders to the Subway Terminal, downtown LA. The Verdugo Mountains can be seen at right.  Click HERE for contemporary view.  





(1931)*# – Panoramic view showing the NE corner of Harvard Street and S. Glendale Ave.  The above building is still standing today and is occupied by a Honda Dealership. Click HERE for contemporary view.  




Hoover High School

(1929)^.^ – Aerial view showing a newly constructed Hoover High School located in the northern part of Glendale at the intersection of Glenwood Road and Concord Street.  


Historical Notes

The school's original campus, on Glenwood Road, opened in 1929. Named after Herbert Hoover, the school was built to serve the northern foothill area of Glendale, which had experienced a lot of development in the 1920s. The first issue of the school yearbook, Scroll, included copies of letters written by Hoover and his wife, Lou. The school dedicated that issue to Hoover.

The school has been the setting for several television programs and movies, most notably "Because They're Young", which was filmed at the campus during the summer recess in 1959. The original campus, with the exception of the auditorium and physical education facilities, was demolished in 1966 being replaced by a new facility which was completed in 1969. In 1990, due to continual and anticipated growth in the number of students entering Hoover, a 33-classroom facility was built and completed in 1992.^




(1974)^.^ - Hoover High School aerial shot with the Verdugo Mountains  in the background. Click HERE for contemporary view.  



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. 1930)** – Postcard view showing the Administration Building at the Grand Central Airport in Glendale. A small airplane numbered NC-8413 is in front of the building.  


Historical Notes

The Grand Central Airport Terminal was designed by Henry L. Gogerty in 1928 blending the Spanish Colonial Revival style with Art Deco influences. The Airport first began its service between Los Angeles and New York, and it played a vital role as the premier airport in Southern California. The building represents the simple concept of early airport terminal design, and it is listed on the Glendale Register of Historic Resources.

The airplane shown in this image was a Ford 4-AT Tri-motor owned by the Maddux Air Lines, which carried 12 passengers from San Diego to Los Angeles during its inaugural flight in California.**




(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".  





(1933)^.^ – View showing the 12-passenger DC-1, Douglas Commercial Model No. 1, at Grand Central Air Terminal.  


Historical Notes

The DC-1 was specifically designed for TWA.  Its inaugural flight was on July 1, 1933, but it was nearly the last when both engines quit during the climb out.  After modifications, the new plane met all of TWA’s requirements, most importantly of which was to be able to fly with only one of the two engines.  TWA placed an immediate order for 25 Douglas airliners, but with more refinements as the DC-2.




(1933)^.^ – View showing showing passengers dining in a TWA DC-2, (refined DC-1).  


Historical Notes

The DC-2 was increased in size with a wider diameter fuselage to allow for the taller passengers to stand in the cabin. Its length was increased by two feet to allow for an extra row of seats that increased total seating to 14. There were other improvements as well. The payload was increased, the service ceiling was increased, the speed was increased and even in-flight movies were introduced. The DC-2 was now the most luxurious airliner in the world.

Only four months after the Model 247 entered service, the first DC-2 was handed over to TWA. It flew in record time between Los Angeles and New York. TWA advertised Coast-to-Coast service in a 200 mph luxury airliner called the Sky Chief. Transcontinental flights consisted of four legs from New York (Newark) to Chicago, Kansas City, Albuquerque and Los Angeles. Flights left at 4:00 p.m. and arrived at 7:00 a.m. the next day.



(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.^



(ca. 1940)#^* - Night departure of a DC-3, Grand Central Air Terminal, Glendale. Hagley Digital Archives  


Historical Notes

The DC-3 was a twin-engine metal monoplane, developed as a larger, improved 14 bed sleeper version of the Douglas DC-2. It had many exceptional qualities compared to previous aircraft. It was fast, had a good range and could operate from short runways. Its construction was all-metal. It was reliable, easy to maintain and carried passengers in greater comfort. Before the war it pioneered many air travel routes. It was able to cross the continental United States, making transcontinental flights and worldwide flights possible, and is considered to be the first airliner that could make money by carrying passengers alone.*^



(1942)^.^ – View showing hundreds of recruits gathered to hear Air Marshall W. A. Bishop speak in front of the Grand Central Air Terminal during WWII.  Note that the tower has already been painted with camouflage.  


Historical Notes

When Pearl Harbor was attacked on December 7, 1941, Grand Central Airport (like all other west coast airports) was immediately closed to private aviation. (The remaining airlines had already moved to Burbank.) The government moved in, heavily camouflaged the place, and converted it into an important defense base for Los Angeles. In 1942 the runway, which originally ended at Sonora Avenue, was extended North to Western Avenue, giving it a 5,000' length to accommodate large airplanes and future jet aircraft.

After the war, geographic constraints hindered the airport’s ability to accommodate new—and larger—commercial aircraft.



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


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 would eventually be closed in 1959.

The closed airport was then used as a private heliport for the Los Angeles Police Department's fleet of police helicopters, some Bell 47's ("recips") and some Bell 206's ("Jet Rangers"), until the hew LAPD Hooper Heliport opened on top of the Piper Tech Building in downtown Los Angeles in 1983.

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.+##



(2017)#^^ - View showing the Grand Central Air Terminal as it appears today.  


Historical Notes

The Grand Central Air Terminal remained untouched until 2012, when its current owner embarked on a project to transform the airport for new uses. The project team rehabilitated the entire property, including the airport concourse, runway, and taxiway.

They completely restored the building’s exterior and significant interior spaces. The team thoroughly researched and meticulously restored, or recreated, missing or degraded character-defining features, such as light fixtures and decorative tile.*




(2019)^.^ – View showing Grand Central Air Terminal as it appears today.  Photo by Ken Duncan  


Historical Notes

Parts of the building were adapted into an event center and a business office for use by current tenants. The airport concourse, runway, and taxiway now serve as event space.

To build awareness of the site’s history and preservation, the team created a visitor center featuring photographs, original artifacts, and an educational film.*




(2019)^.^ - Close-up view of the restored Art-Deco Grand Central Terminal Tower.  Photo by Ken Duncan  


Historical Notes

The building’s unique design combines the popular Spanish Colonial Revival style of the period with Zig-Zag Moderne influences. Unique details include winged sentries clutching propellers atop the five-story control tower.




(2019)^.^ - Grand Central Air Terminal – “An International Airport”.   Photo by Ken Duncan  


Historical Notes

In 2017, the Grand Central Air Terminal Renovation Project earned the Conservancy Preservation Award.*


* * * * *



Glendale Southern Pacific Railroad Depot (today Glendale Amtrak/Metrolink Station)

(ca. 1923)^*# - Close-up view of the Mission Revival Style entrance to the Glendale Train Station. Beautiful wrought iron grills, railings, lanterns and magnificent Churrigueresque cast stone entry portals guarded by fanciful mermen figures hold up the railroad's herald above each waiting room door.  


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. 1940s)^ - 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.  





(n.d.)^.^ – A woman and a young girl walk toward a stopped train at the Glendale Southern Pacific Railroad Depot with palm trees seen in the background.  





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


Historical Notes

Because of the depot's proximity to the film industry in Los Angeles and Hollywood, many movies have been shot there. In the 1930s Buster Keaton filmed "College" at depot, "Horse Shoes" was another. The most well know film with the depot as a background was by director Billy Wilder, "Double Indemnity" in 1944 starring Fred MacMurray and Barbara Stanwyck.*




(1962)^.^ – Passengers shield their eyes from a bright sun as they await an incoming train.  





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


Historical Notes

The depot has undergone minor remodels in 1943, 1954 and restored in 1999 and 2012. In 2015, the unstaffed depot served 10 Pacific Surfliners, 54 Metrolinks trains weekdays, and 12 Antelope Valley Line trains Weekends and was the 37th busiest Amtrak station in the state with 100 passengers daily*.




(2018)^.^ – View showing the Glendale Southern Pacific Railroad Depot (today Glendale Amtrak/Metrolink Station) as it appears today.  


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.^



Slate Dirigible (Glendale Airport)

(1929)+## – Large crowd surrounds a Slate Dirigible which has just landed at Glendale Airport.  


Historical Notes

In 1925, Thomas Slate leased space adjacent to the south side of the Glendale Airport for the construction of an all-metal dirigible, a very novel (but ultimately unsuccessful) design.  The dirigible was made out of duralumin & was filled with hydrogen. It was forecast to have a cruising speed of 80 mph and would accommodate 40 passengers and 5 crew.  The dirigible was to be powered by oil and driven by steam-turbine, using one rotary blower, which would create a vacuum, instead of traditional propellers.  Slate also constructed a metal hangar, the largest built in the United States at the time.*




(1928)^.^ - The Slate Dirigible is docked in its hanagar at Glendale Airport. At the time, this was the largest built metal hangar in the United States.  




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.



The Great Flood of 1938

(1938)^*# - Aerial view showing the devastation when the LA River overflowed its banks. The above photo is labeled “North Hollywood,” but the area shown is actually the southwestern portion of Glendale. This is the area where Glendale, Burbank, and the City of Los Angeles all come together. Riverside Drive runs from center-left to lower-right corner.  The street that ends at the river is Western Avenue. The large estate surrounded by trees (center of photo) was the Betty Davis “country” estate (she did not live there but she did keep her horses there, entertained, etc.); her house and many of the trees are still in place today. Click HERE for contemporary aerial view.  


Historical Notes

Between February 27 and 28, 1938, a storm from the Pacific Ocean moved inland into the Los Angeles Basin, running eastward into the San Gabriel Mountains. The area received almost constant rain totaling 4.4 inches from February 27-March 1. This caused minor flooding that affected only a few buildings in isolated canyons and some low-lying areas along rivers.

Fifteen hours later on March 1, at approximately 8:45 PM, a second storm hit the area, creating gale-force winds along the coast and pouring down even more rain. The storm brought rainfall totals to 10 inches in the lowlands and upwards of 32 inches in the mountains.  When the storm ended on March 3, the resulting damage was huge -- 115 lives were lost.




(1938)#+ - Heavily traveled Riverside Drive in Glendale was undermined by the torrent of the Los Angeles River. This damaged section was near the former Grand Central Airport.  Photo date: March 5, 1938.  


Historical Notes

Click HERE to see more in 'Los Angeles River The Unpredictable'



Glendale Police Department

(1938)##^ - Radio telephone in patrol cars.  Chief V. B. Brown gives a demonstration of the first two-way radio telephone in the Glendale Police Department's patrol cars.  The motorcycle officer is Wes Owen. The call letters KQCI became the identifier of the Glendale Police Department radio telephone.  





(1930s)##^ - A meter maid and a motorcycle officer for the Glendale Police Department.  






(ca. 1940)##^ - Glendale Police Department Officer I. A. Robinson on an official-issue Harley Davidson motorcycle.



Click HERE to see more Early Views of the Glendale Police Department (1919 +)




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.



Sears Building

(1930s)#** - View looking south showing the Sears Building located on the southeast corner of Central and California avenues in Glendale.  


Historical Notes

The old Sears advertising slogan “Come to Sears Brand Central” has a special meaning in Glendale, as this Sears is situated between Brand Blvd. and Central Ave.  Completed in 1935, this was the first Sears store in the world to be custom-built as such. Up until that point, Sears-Roebuck had taken over existing structures.^




(1930s)* – Close-up corner view showing the Sears Roebuck and Co. tower.  


Historical Notes

Between 1937 and 1938 the architectural firm of Nimmons, Carr and Wright designed similar Late Moderne style Sears Roebuck and Company Department Stores in Illinois, Maryland, Michigan and Glendale California. The Glendale Sears features large sign towers, glass brick window panels and a long series of display windows covered by an awning along the street. The Glendale store, located at 236 North Central Avenue, is still standing today although it has been remodeled.^x*




(1930s)* – View looking north showing Sears Roebuck and Co. located at 236 N. Central Ave. Notice how the house on the right had been repurposed as a clinic.  Though the structure is long gone, a medical clinic still occupies the lot just south of the Sears today. Click HERE to see contemporary view.






(ca. 1925)* - Panoramic view of Glendale along Central Avenue looking north from Colorado Blvd.  






(1930)* - View showing North Central Avenue in Glendale. The building on the right has a Radio service shop, Beauty Shoppe, "Billie Bird Market" and a drug store. The building on the left has "Bradstreet Market Groceries & Meats" and a dry goods shop. In the center left there is a building with rooms for rent and a Community service station with tire repairing.





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.  





(1930)^ - View of the northeast corner of Brand Boulevard and Wilson Avenue.  A small Texaco service station can be seen at the corner of the intersection. On the left (east side of Brand) is Weber's Cafe and a side profile of the Alex Theatre building. Click HERE for contemporary view.  





(1930)^ - View is west on Wilson Avenue from Brand Boulevard. At the corner is Henry's Ice Cream which also serves lunch. Residential homes may be seen further down the block. Click HERE for 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.  


Historical Notes

Sontag Drug Stores was one of the largest drug store chains in the U.S. in the 1930’s & 1940’s.  It was also one of the first to allow customers to browse and choose their own products rather than requesting them from a clerk behind a counter. 

All in all, there were 16 Sontag Drugs located in Los Angeles, and another 32 in other locations – for a total of 48 stores.  Their Los Angeles headquarters was located at the corner of Wilshire Blvd. and La Cienega Blvd. (torn down and replaced at one time with the Flynt Building).^


Glendale Theater

(1940s)^.^ – View looking north on Brand Blvd from near Harvard Street with the Glendale Theatre seen at center of the block.  Paul Burgan’s Radio Service is on the right behind the ornate 5-bulb streetlight.  


Historical Notes

The Glendale Theatre opened on October 28, 1920. In February 1940 it became a district 2 Fox West Coast Theatre.*





(1940s)^^* – View looking northeast showing the Glendale Theater located at 122 S. Brand Blvd.  The Glendale Music Co. is seen just to the north of the theater.






(1970)^^* – A boy poses in front of the Glendale Theatre.  Note all the bikes parked in front of the theater against the curb.  The marquee reads:  TWICE THE THRILLS: “Brides of Dracula” and “The Leech Woman”.  Photo courtesy of Joel Sandell.  




(1979)^^* – Front view of the Glendale Theatre located at 122 S. Brand Boulevard. Photo courtesy of Stacie Inkel  


Historical Notes

The Glendale Theatre was twinned on June 13, 1980 and later closed, last operated by Mann Theatres. It was demolished in 1995-1996.*

A DSW Shoes is now located where the Glendale Theatre once stood. Click HERE for contemporary view.


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.


California Theatre

(1952)** - View showing the California Theatre, 341 N. Brand Blvd.  Marquis reads:  Always Top Family Movies – Now Playing: Come Back Little Sheiba w/Burt Lancaster.  


Historical Notes

The California Theatre was opened on December 25, 1928. In February 1940 the California Theatre was taken over by Fox West Coast Theatres as a District 2 house. It was still open in 1956, but had closed by 1957.  By 1959 the theatre was converted into a furniture store, Scott's Furniture.


Alex Theatre (originally known as the Alexander 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.  





(2019)^.^ - The Alex Theater as it appears today. Photo date: July 26, 2019  


Historical Notes

The Alex Theatre Performing Arts and Entertainment Center has been the centerpiece of the Glendale's arts, culture and community events since it originally opened. It is managed by Glendale Arts, a non-profit organization. The theater's diverse schedule boasts roughly 250 events per year and attracts more than 100,000 patrons annually. Programs range from classical and contemporary concerts, theatre, dance, comedy, fundraising and special events as well as TV and film productions and industry related award presentations.

Resident companies include the Alex Film Society, Glendale Youth Orchestra, Musical Theatre Guild, and the Los Angeles Chamber Orchestra.

The Alex Film Society regularly schedules classic films, often accompanied with special guests (e.g., the annual Thanksgiving weekend tradition "Three Stooges Big Screen Event," which children, grandchildren, and other relatives of the Stooges often attend), live musical performances of the film's soundtrack and vintage photos.*^


* * * * *




(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. *^^



Bruce's Fun House

(n.d.)^.^ - View looking through the display window of Bruce’s Fun House located on Wilson Ave between Brand Blvd and Orange St.  


* * * * *




(1963)^ – View looking north on Brand Boulevard at Broadway. Click HERE for contemporary view.  





(ca. 1924)^ - View looking north on Brand Boulevard at Broadway.   (1963)^ – View looking north on Brand Boulevard at Broadway.



* * * * *





(ca. 1940)^^ – View looking north showing a full parking lot in front of Alexander’s Market on Orange Street.  


Historical Notes

In the 80s it was House of Fabrics, and then Joann's fabrics after that.




(1946)^ – View looking north on Verdugo Road at Dixon Street in Glendale, showing various businesses on the left and a large Ralphs supermarket (right). At the northern end of the parking lot is a Van De Kamp's windmill-shaped bakery (upper left) and a Shell service station.  


Historical Notes

This corner is still occupied by a Ralphs supermarket, but the Art Deco structure, designed by Stiles Clements, has since been demolished and replaced with a larger store.  Click HERE for contemporary view.



Snowbird Ice Cream (later Baskin-Robbins)

(1948)^.^ - Baskin-Robbins originally Snowbird Ice Cream, 1130 South Adams Street, Glendale.  The building on the corner of Adams Street and Palmer Ave still exists.  Click HERE for contemporary view.  


Historical Notes

Baskin-Robbins started out as Snowbird Ice Cream. Actually, Irv Robbin’s ice cream parlor was called Snowbird before he merged with Burt Baskin’s Burton’s Ice Cream Shop. This photo was taken in 1948 at the Glendale, California store, where their ice-cream empire first started.

The Baskin-Robbins ice cream parlors started as separate ventures of Burt Baskin and Irv Robbins, who owned Burton's Ice Cream Shop (opened in 1945) and Snowbird Ice Cream (opened in 1946), respectively.  Snowbird Ice Cream offered 21 flavors, a novel concept at that time. When the separate companies merged in 1953, the number of flavors was expanded to 31 flavors.

By 1948, Burt and Irv had opened six stores. The first franchise covering the sale of ice cream was executed May 20, 1948, for the store at 1130 South Adams in Glendale (Store #1). In 1949, the company’s production facility opened in Burbank. Burt and Irv made the decision to sell the stores to the managers. In 1953, Baskin-Robbins hired Carson-Roberts Advertising who recommended adoption of the number 31 as well as the pink (cherry) and brown (chocolate) polka dots and typeface that were reminiscent of the circus. The first store that adopted the new 31 look was 804 North Glendale Ave. in Glendale, in March 1953. Between 1949 and 1962, the corporate firm was Huntington Ice Cream Company. The name succeeded The Baskin-Robbins Partnership and was eventually changed back to Baskin-Robbins in 1962. 

Baskin-Robbins was owned by its founders until it was acquired in 1967 (just prior to Burt Baskin's death) by the United Brands Company (United Fruit). In the 1970s, the chain went international, opening stores in Japan, Saudi Arabia, South Korea, and Australia. Baskin-Robbins also was the first to introduce ice cream cakes to the public.*^



Towers Motors

(1949)#^* – View showing Towers Motors, a Lincoln Mercury dealership located on Colorado Street in Glendale.  


Historical Notes

The Googie-style building located at 600 E. Colorado Street was designed by John Lautner. This beautiful building no longer stands.

The price for a brand new 1949 Mercury woody wagon (as seen above) was a whopping $2,500.00.




(1949)#^* – Exterior night view showing the beautiful Towers Motors showroom, 600 E. Colorado Street, Glendale.  Photo by Julius Shulman  





(1949)#^* – Close-up view, looking southwest, showing the Towers Motors showroom with Colorado Street seen in the background.  




Bob's Big Boy (Colorado Street)

(ca. 1949)**^ – View showing Bob’s Big Boy Drive-in restaurant located at 900 E. Colorado in Glendale.  


Historical Notes

Bob's Big Boy restaurant chain was founded by Bob Wian in Southern California in 1936, originally named Bob's Pantry.

The chain is best known for its trademark chubby boy in red-and-white checkered overalls holding a Big Boy sandwich (double-decker cheeseburger). The inspiration for Big Boy's name, as well as the model for its mascot, was Richard Woodruff (1936–1986), of Glendale, California. When he was six years old, he walked into the diner Bob's Pantry as Bob Wian was attempting to name his new hamburger. Wian said, "Hello, Big Boy" to Woodruff, and the name stuck.*^




(ca. 1949)**^ – Night view showing a very crowded Bob’s Big Boy Drive-in Restaurant at 900 E Colorado in Glendale.  





(ca. 1950)^.^ - Proof positive that Bob's was the place to be in the early 1950's! This picture shows the mob, and line of cars waiting to get into the "twin drive in and coffee shop" at 900 E. Colorado, Glendale.  


Historical Notes

Bob’s Big Boy became a cultural icon for Glendale teenagers in the 1940s up until the 1970s.  After the widely popular Glendale and Hoover High School football games, lines of cars filled with local students would eat at Bob’s Big Boy on Colorado Street.




Bob's Big Boy (Broadway Ave)

(1950s)^.^ - Bob's number four location at the northwest corner of Broadway and Maryland in Glendale.  Photo courtesy of Bruce B. Hermann  


Historical Notes

Opened May 17, 1948 rebuilt and reopened December 1956 at 121 E. Broadway Ave.  The building still stands, but many remodeling jobs over the years have left it unrecognizable. It now houses a Chinese restaurant.  Click HERE for contemporary view.



Currie's Ice Cream

(1960)^.^ - View showing Currie’s Ice Cream and an Owl Drugs store located at the northwest corner of Glenoaks Boulevard and Irving Avenue, Grandview Neighborhood of Glendale.  


Historical Notes

The above building is still there.  Click HERE for contemporary view.




(n.d.)^.^ - Interior view of Currie’s.  40 cents for a quart of ice cream and they're apologizing for having to raise the prices. Yikes!  


Historical Notes

The Currie's Ice Cream chain was started in 1927 by three brothers named Kuhns. After WWII they sold it to the Good Humor Company who later sold it to Lipton in the 1960s. In 1964 the chain opened its 87th store, in North Hollywood. Although Currie’s anticipated launching units in every community in Southern California, only three outlets were listed in the 1967 Los Angeles phone book and the chain had disappeared by the 1980s.*


* * * * *


Great White Hut

(1970s)^.^ – A young woman standing near the Great White Hut looks toward the camera with Sears Building seen in the background.  Address:  121 W. California Avenue, Glendale.  


Historical Notes

Since 1947, The Great White Hut has been located on the corner of Orange and California in Glendale. Staying open until 3am, it really becomes a great white beacon of hope after the bars let out and you realize IN N OUT has long since closed. For such a tiny spot, its menu is surprisingly large.



(2017)** – Close-up side view of The Great White Hut as it appears today.  Sign on top reads NOW OPEN LATE!  Friday & Saturday: 8AM – 3AM  


Historical Notes

The Great White Hut is a tiny little building in the corner of a parking lot, white walls with bright blue trim, surrounded on three sides with a black-and-white checker-board tile counter. Stools with blue posts and red seats, shaded by a blue-and-white awning.




(ca. 2019)^ - Great White Hut with life-size murals of Marilyn Monroe and James Dean    


Historical Notes

Painted on one side of the Hut is a life-sized portrait of James Dean, and on the other side is a portrait of Marilyn Monroe.

Click HERE to see Contemporary Google View.


* * * * *


Henry's Restaurant

(1977)*^* – View showing Henry’s Restaurant located on the SE corner of Colorado Street and Glendale Avenue.  


Historical Notes

Henry's was known for its "Chicken in the Rough" meal. Also for its Fried Chicken Livers and Gizzards. Click HERE to see menu.


* * * * *



(ca. 1959)^.^ – View looking northwest on Brand Boulevard toward Lexington Drive showing the newly built Glendale Federal Savings Building on the NW corner.  Scott’s Furniture and the California Hotel can be seen at left.  


Historical Notes

The Glendale Federal Savings Building was completed in 1959.

Scott's Furniture (seen on the left) is in the space where the California Theatre was once located (1928-1957).



Then and Now

(ca. 1959)^.^   (2019)*



Glendale Federal Savings Building

(1959)^ -  View showing the Glendale Federal Building shortly after it opened, located on the NW corner of Brand and Lexington.  


Historical Notes

As head designer for the Bank Building and Equipment Corporation of America, Peruvian-born architect W. A. Sarmiento designed hundreds of Modern-style bank buildings all over the country. One of the most renowned and best-loved is right here, in Glendale: the Glendale Federal Savings and Loan Building on Brand Boulevard.

Glendale Federal founder and president J. E. Hoeft wanted an ambitious design for his bank’s new headquarters, something not only representative of West Coast Modernism, but of his burgeoning hometown. He offered a prime site at the corner of Lexington and Brand, and Sarmiento delivered a dynamic design that would prove to be an icon of Southern California Modernism.

Completed in 1959, the Glendale Federal Savings Building features a vertical, dramatically angled red stair/elevator tower fronting the main volume, which is a rectangular ten story high-rise.*




(ca. 1960)^.^ - Interior view of the space-age Glendale Federal Savings.  


Historical Notes

The tower is actually lifted above the building’s first floor, allowing the mezzanine level to be lit with natural sunlight.* 




(ca. 1960)** – Close-up view of the Glendale Federal Savings Building, 401 N. Brand Boulevard.  


Historical Notes

Architect Maxwell A. Starkman produced a design for an addition in 1962 that doubled the size of the office building and harmonized with Sarmiento's original design.

On the building’s fire brick red corner tower, a vertical sign proudly displayed its name for all to see as this was the city’s tallest building for many years.  The corner tower functions as fire escape and elevator tower.  The main cube structure is framed by concrete and glass with windows framed in aluminum, forming a grid of blue and white colors during the day, and glowing light with the louvers open at night. 




(2009)** - Detail view showing the vertical louvers of the Glendale Federal Savings Building.  


Historical Notes

The building’s many windows are shaded by distinctive blue enameled steel louvers which use solar power to pivot throughout the day.




(2019)^.^ – View showing the Glendale Federal Savings Building (now Hollywood Production Center) located at 401 N. Brand Blvd. Note how the building is set at a 45 degree angle to the city grid.  


Historical Notes

Set at a 45 degree angle to the city grid, Hoeft gave Sarmiento the perfect site to create a bold architectural statement that for decades has been known as the “tower” of Glendale, featured on postcards, and described by Los Angeles architectural historian Robert Winter as “pure 1950s razzle dazzle.”  **




(2019)^^ - Close-up view of the Glendale Federal Building on the NW corner of Brand and Lexington. The building now houses the Hollywood Production Center.  


Historical Notes

Glendale Federal Savings and Loan was bought out by Cal Fed in 1998 and the company moved its headquarters up the street.  The building was subsequently sold to Nicholson Vertex Partners, who indicated their intent to remodel the building and to remove its character defining architectural features.  In late 2000, the Glendale Historical Society, Los Angeles Conservancy, and concerned preservationists united to wage a preservation campaign that resulted in the building’s listing on the California survey of historic landmarks.  With that listing, any permit to remodel required an environmental impact analysis. **




(2019)^^ – View looking west at the Glendale Federal Savings Building, 401 N. Brand Boulevard.  


Historical Notes

Largely retaining its architectural integrity, Glendale Federal Savings is the embodiment of distinguished mid-century modern architecture with enduring significance by retaining its central form and character.  Viewed from any elevation, Glendale Federal Savings became the symbol of the new downtown through its design, color, size, and dynamic presence, which is unlike any other architecture in the region.**

The building now houses the Hollywood Production Center.


* * * * *




Glendale Police Headquarters

(1960)^ - Photograph caption reads, "Spanking new headquarters for Glendale Police Force is 1,000,000, two-story building at Wilson Avenue and Isabel Street. Glendale's 160-man force will now be under one roof in new building. Formerly, part of police department was in old police building at 111 N. Howard St. and part in utility building."  Valley Times photo date: November 8, 1960. Click HERE for contemporary view.  


* * * * *




(1982)*^* – View showing north Brand Boulevard at the Verdugo wash with the Incarnation Church at left and the Ralph’s grocery store at right.  



* * * * *



Glendale Fashion Center

(1966)##^ – View showing the intersection of Glendale and Wilson avenues, with Secutiry First National Bank and Richfield gas station on the NW and SW corners, respectively.  This land was cleared for the Glendale Fashion Center.  Click HERE for contemporary view.  





(1974)^.^ - View looking SW showing the Glendale Fashion Center at Glendale Ave and California St.  The anchor store was Robinson's, seen in the background.  Desmond’s is at center-left.  


Historical Notes

Today Glendale Fashion Center is anchored by Ross, TJ Maxx, Nordstrom Rack, Staples, and Petco. Click HERE for contemporary view.



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  


* * * * *




(1980s)*# - Sign reads: City of Glendale - Brand Boulevard  




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. ###*




(2017)*# – Panoramic view of the City of Glendale as seen from the Verdugo Moutains.  


Historical Notes

As of 2014, Glendale had a population was 200,167, making it the third largest city in Los Angeles County and the 23rd-largest city in California.

Glendale has one of the largest communities of Armenian descent in the United States.  In 2013, Glendale was named LA's Neighborhood of the Year by the readers and editors of Curbed.com.

Forest Lawn Memorial Park Cemetery contains the remains of many noted celebrities and local residents. Grand Central Airport was the departure point for the first commercial west-to-east transcontinental flight flown by Charles Lindbergh.*^


* * * * *





Please Support Our Cause

Water and Power Associates, Inc. is a non-profit, public service organization dedicated to preserving historical records and photos.  We are of the belief that this information should be made available to everyone—for free, without restriction, without limitation and without advertisements.

Your generosity allows us to continue to disseminate knowledge of the rich and diverse multicultural history of the greater Los Angeles area; to serve as a resource of historical information; and to assist in the preservation of the city's historic records.







More Historical Early Views



Newest Additions



Early LA Buildings and City Views



History of Water and Electricity in Los Angeles



* * * * *



References anc Credits

* DWP - LA Public Library Image Archive

^ LA Public Library Image Archive

^^USC Digital Library

** LMU Digital Library

*^ Wikipedia

^* Glendale High School Home Page

*# Abandoned & Little-Known Airfields – Paul Freeman

#* Flickr.com: Glendale Public Library

*# Facebook: My Glendale

#^ Pacific Electric Railway Historical Society

#+ Los Angeles River Flood of 1938

++ Early Glendale (Images of America)

++#Facebook: Paul Ayers

#**Huntington Digital Library Archive

#^^LA Conservancy


**^Facebook.com: Bob's Big Boy

*^^LA Times: Webb's Department Store

*^*Glendale Public Library

+++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

^x*Facebook.com: So. Calif. Historic Arrchitecture

^*#California State Library Image Archive

^##Metropolitan Transportation Library and Archive

+##Airport Journals: Grand Central Aiport

#*^Library of Congress

#^^Calisphere Digital Archive

#^*Flickr.com: Michael Ryerson

##^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





< Back