USC Digital Library-Dick Whittington Photography Collection.
Anyway, thereafter, I decided that if I ever went back to Los Angeles, I would like to visit the place where my mother was photographed, 73 years ago. And three Wednesdays ago, during my recent L.A. vacation, I did just that.
Here's the exact spot, then and now.
J Scott Shannon.
Remarkably, relatively little in the background has changed in the intervening seven decades. The two principal buildings visible in the old photograph are still there – the 9th and Broadway Building (1929), and the L.L. Burns Building (1914); the latter is the one with the "Kelly's" ad painted on its side. (No ads today – this section of Broadway is not in any way the commercial hotspot it used to be.) The lampposts are noticeably different in height and style, but the bases themselves are apparently the same ones as when Mother was there.
Photo by J Scott Shannon.
And where was Mom walking to that day in October, 1936? Probably to a trolley stop at the intersection of South Broadway and Olympic Blvd., which is only a few feet in back of where the 1936 photographer was standing.
Heh, it's funny, when I was there last week, I tried to show Mom's picture to several passers-by, but nobody could be bothered. Admittedly, if I were walking on South Broadway and some stranger asked if I'd like to see a picture of his mother, I'd probably avoid the guy, too. ;-)