Mystery History Answers (January 2019)

(1901) - View looking west on 3rd St toward Hill St showing the newly completed 3rd Street Tunnel through Bunker Hill. A conductor is seen standing on the outside steps of a streetcar as a woman carrying a parasol and a young boy walk by. Edwin B. Crocker's mansion is seen above on Bunker Hill. Angels Flight has not been built yet.  


Historical Notes

On July 3, 1893, residents and taxpayers presented a petition to the Los Angeles City Council asking that a tunnel be created to connect those who lived in the Crown Hill neighborhood with the business district located on this side of Bunker Hill. Their plans called for a tunnel 1080 feet long, with a twenty-six foot roadway and eight foot sidewalks. Nothing happened for five years.

In 1898 the City Council ordered the City Attorney to draw up an ordinance putting tunnel bonds in front of the public via a special election. That election was held on July 6, 1898, and funds were approved for both the Third Street and Broadway tunnels.

On January 21, 1900, a serious disaster struck. Thirteen men were "entombed" in the tunnel dig after a massive cave-in on the western end. Several were killed in the collapse, but others were trapped inside with only the air in the tunnel. Frantic efforts were made to dig into their position. Ten men were rescued, while three perished.

In March of 1901 the tunnel was opened to the public. It was unpaved and unlit. Gutters weren’t installed until 1902.

Click HERE to see more early views of the Third Street Tunnel.



(1901) - Angels Flight: View showing the grand opening of the incline railway, December 31st, 1901.  


Historical Notes

Built in 1901 with financing from Colonel J.W. Eddy, as the Los Angeles Incline Railway, Angels Flight began at the west corner of Hill Street at Third and ran for two blocks uphill (northwestward) to its Olive Street terminus.*^

An observation tower and a 'Camera Obscura' were also constructed on top of the hill adjacent to the Crocker Mansion .

A Camera Obscura (Latin: "dark chamber") is an optical device that consists of a box or room with a hole in one side. Light from an external scene passes through the hole and strikes a surface inside, where it is reproduced, rotated 180 degrees (thus upside-down), but with color and perspective preserved. The image can be projected onto paper, and can then be traced to produce a highly accurate representation.

Click HERE to see more early views of Angels Flight.



Before and After

(1885) vs. (1903)    


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