Monday, October 12, 2009

First there is the above, followed by the below...... And, ".....put them both together they spell........" So earlier last week, I had to get out of the house because my Gardener had to spray, (for the third frigging time) these horrible chemicals underneath my house and all around the foundation of my house because the ants had returned, for the third friggin' time! And because of my irreversibly damaged lungs and my on-going lung illness, I am not supposed to breath in any toxic fumes, whatsoever---they could cause more damage, you see....So, with my Heat Registers still sealed off from the two times he sprayed before----that's where the fumes come up into my house and effect me in a very bad way----dear Seemah took me out for a long long ride. This time we went East of where I live. I thought it might be fun to get some pictures of the wonderful Hollywood Sign.....So, we went up into Beachwood Canyon....... The sign already looks pretty close when you are on Beachwood Drive....certainly a lot closer than it looks from Hollywood & Highland....! Beachwood Drive is a very long street that goes up into the hills and is accessed from Franklin Avenue and though it climbs most of the way, for a good long time it is a very easy incline, until you get to the stone gates which starts the area that was actually once known as 'Hollywoodland', when this whole section was first developed in the early 1920's. Below, the stone 'Gates' that tell you, you are now entering Hollywoodland. Above, as it looked back in 1923 when it was built. The white home that is at what looks like the end of the road was once owned by Busby Berkely, the great great director of early Musical extravaganza films---he was famous for the kaleidoscopic designs of the dancers/swimmers. etc....Below, a picture of some kind of gathering at Busby's home back in the early 1920's..... His house is right there behind the 'Jitneys' which brought the people all the way up lower Beachwood Drive to his house, which is at the entrance to the Canyon itself....Here below is how it looks today..... And you can just see a little bit of the 'gate' to the right....In truth, it was never a real gate at all....Just these two stone things on either side of the road. Here below is a closer look at that..... And a closer look below at the Plaque....... And below....this is what the original 'Hollywoodland' sign looked like.....Built in 1923, the sign cost $21,000. It was erected by the developers of the area as a selling point and it was only supposed to be temporary...but it stayed up waaaay past it's prime.Above, you can see the sign way up there in the distance. Eventually the last four letters were removed and the rest of it was in such disrepair that it was almost destroyed and totally removed by the 1970's.... At that point, in 1978, some very wonderful individuals each "bought" a letter for $28,000 a piece, so that the sign could be completely refurbished and re-built in a much more lasting manner......And today the Hollywood Sign remains a true iconic landmark.....Tourists are always trying to find out how to get up there. Well, it's up Beachwood Drive. The way I go from there is I turn left on Ledgewood and just follow it all the way up as far as it will go....Then it takes you to a very open area where you can see Lake Hollywood and see the Sign pretty close up! (There is another way to get to this Vista...but it's too complicated to explain A small section of Lake Hollywood, which is really a Reservoir, but they call it Lake Hollywood....And then in the picture below---and east of the Lake----is the Hollywood Sign. As you can see in the picture above, there is an open Park right there at the base of the mountain, very popular on the weekends, but used all week long as well....This residential area was developed in 1961 and is known as Lake Hollywood Estates......And below, I took this picture of the sign at the top of one of the streets of Lake Hollywood Estates.....It is an interesting angle......The angle makes it look like the "H" and the "D" are separated from the other letters.....Strange, isn't it? I've always loved the sign.....and I swear it still said Hollywoodland when I first saw it....Well, it had to be in 1947---the very first time I came to Los Angeles----because from everything I have read, they removed the last four letters in 1949......

More To Come........

had this to say:

Naomi....I hope those ants have now run for the other HILLS!

I love learning about the history of the area you call home. We all have a romantically wistful connection to Hollywood don't we, even though many of us will never set foot there....

Monday, October 12, 2009 at 12:18:00 PM PDT 

had this to say:

That is a truly iconic sign. I have been there as a tourist myself, but didn't manage to get as close as you did!

I hope you get rid of your friggin ants!!!

Monday, October 12, 2009 at 12:55:00 PM PDT 

Anonymous Kathy_B
had this to say:

The 'jitney' picture is very interesting. It looks very windy and dusty, like perhaps there were some pretty intense Santa Anas blowing when it was taken!

As always, very interesting to read the history.

Monday, October 12, 2009 at 1:20:00 PM PDT 

had this to say:

Hi Naomi,
I hope those ants now run away for the other side of the World! Lol!

Love these photos reportage! I would love seeing this Hollywood sigh in person!

Have a nice week ahead!

Monday, October 12, 2009 at 4:20:00 PM PDT 

had this to say:

Me again...
Carlos loves seeing those old cars! Great pictures indeed. He has an old, very old Ford 29. (unfortunately in not good shape...).

Monday, October 12, 2009 at 4:22:00 PM PDT 

had this to say:

Isn't that funny? All the time I've lived in CA and I never knew that sign was missing its last four letters. :)

So glad you had a drive-about, even if it is at the cost of annoying ants.

Monday, October 12, 2009 at 4:40:00 PM PDT 

had this to say:

Another wonderful post, still enjoying your blog as always Naomi! I think I like the old 'Hollywoodland' sign better somehow, maybe I'm just nostalgiv LOL! BTW I am back with a new version of my old blog if you want to have a look:

Monday, October 12, 2009 at 8:28:00 PM PDT 

had this to say:

Wonderful post as always Naomi. I think I prefer the 'Hollywoodland' sign somehow, maybe I'm just nostalgic LOL! BTW I am back blogging with a new version of my old blog, missed it, am loving writing again! :)

Monday, October 12, 2009 at 8:29:00 PM PDT 

had this to say:

The ants have gone (I hope) and you will suffer no ill effects from the spraying! I saw the sign from afar when we were there; public transportation didn't allow us to go up there, although we wanted to!

Monday, October 12, 2009 at 9:06:00 PM PDT 

had this to say:

It's always fun to sightsee in your own town, even thought the reason for it is terrible. I hope you and Seemah had a nice drive and that is was a sort of lemonade to the lemons that are your ants.

Tuesday, October 13, 2009 at 1:07:00 AM PDT 

had this to say:

Determined litte creatures those ants are. Hope they are gone now and no problems from the chemicals. Good idea on how to spend the day out.
That sign is "the" symbol of Hollywood. I did not know the whole story and really liked the original sign.
Those sure were expensive letters. Thanks for the pictures and information.

Tuesday, October 13, 2009 at 4:14:00 AM PDT 

had this to say:

Hi Naomi,

I have never been to Hollywood, so it's been interesting to see the pictures of the Hollywood sign, as seen from different locations. Loved the pictures and some of the history that goes along with them.

Hope your house was aired out properly by the time you got home, and that the ants will not return. Have a great rest of the week.


Tuesday, October 13, 2009 at 4:40:00 AM PDT 

had this to say:

I am so glad I can say I have seen the sign. I had to go to LA once on business. I didn't see any of Hollywood but I did see the sign! I think that is a great landmark. I am so sorry about those stupid ants. I wish they would leave you alone! Thanks for all the great pictures today.

Tuesday, October 13, 2009 at 6:46:00 AM PDT 

had this to say:

Thanks for the tour. Of course, that sign is probably one of the top five iconic American place images. I wonder who many movies and TV shows it's been in?


Tuesday, October 13, 2009 at 7:08:00 AM PDT 

had this to say:

I'm sorry about the ants but I sure am enjoying your photos and the stories behind them!

Tuesday, October 13, 2009 at 8:02:00 AM PDT 

Anonymous Anonymous
had this to say:

Who in the heck could have predicted the history of a simple sign?

Hope the ants are gone I also hate them and bees and go nuts if they are ever in the house..and take care of yourself, I'm just getting to know you and I'd like you to be here in the blogosphere for a long time.

thanks for the kind words.

Dorothy from grammology

Tuesday, October 13, 2009 at 6:11:00 PM PDT 

had this to say:

Very nice, thank you for sharing. I enjoy posts like this.

Tuesday, October 13, 2009 at 6:21:00 PM PDT 

had this to say:

I've seen that sign so many times in movies and pictures ... one day I hope to see it in person.

I didn't know that it was originally "Hollywoodland". Hence the name of the movie about the death of Superman?

Tuesday, October 13, 2009 at 6:52:00 PM PDT 

had this to say:

It's good to be back, Naomi. We've had a lot going on in our family and I haven't been by. Thanks for posting the wonderful photos. xoxo

Tuesday, October 13, 2009 at 7:16:00 PM PDT 

Blogger Mar
had this to say:

(Hope the ants are gone for good this time!!!)
I have seen this sign so many times, thanks for showing the way to it!! it is fun to see it from a street, enjoyed your pictures and story very much!!

Tuesday, October 13, 2009 at 10:36:00 PM PDT 

Anonymous Anonymous
had this to say:

Hi Naomi:

As I will most certainly NEVER get that far west of here to see Hollywood and your lovely community, I live vicariously through your blog and I'm loving it.

(Hubby won't fly or travel that far (so I guess Hawaii is out too?!!!#$%^& - hmm, until the next husband, I guess. LOL).

What a nice day you had with Seemah! Lovely pictures and commentary of the history, which I love.

Great shots of 1923 Berkley too!

I so look forward to more history of your area. It is very interesting to those of us who live near and far, who love history.

I hope you are breathing ok after the house is a shame you couldn't stay at a friend's house for a couple of days to make sure the fumes were gone. I too can't take it - even a spray aerosol can if someone sprays it near me.

Take care,

Wednesday, October 14, 2009 at 5:10:00 AM PDT 

had this to say:

Cool. I liked the pictures of how it all looked when it was first built. I think the stone structures look interesting even if they're not a real gate.

Wednesday, October 14, 2009 at 5:22:00 AM PDT 

had this to say:

You know I have been to California but never been there. I am happy hear about this. I will have to make it out there sometime to get my own photo's and share more of this history with you..

Wednesday, October 14, 2009 at 8:24:00 AM PDT 

had this to say:

oh gosh, really sorry to hear about the ants again!.. but I want to thank Seemah for taking you on a ride that has turned into more of your fine blogging!! :o) "have camera will travel" lol

Wednesday, October 14, 2009 at 8:55:00 AM PDT 

had this to say:

in some ways I'll thanks the Ants for this trip along your memory lane....
Fabulous how you bring the past into the present and put it all into a historic frame or scene.

More about Ants at the end of this loooong comment.

Well, your post is from Monday Oct 12 - 2009. The very same day as my mother celebrated her "first" 90.
I did post from the celeb. And when I read this post of yours, it stimulated me to think about what have happened the past 90-years...
It's, what word to really put on it?
... At least we can communicate every day, by mail, blog and phone across continents and oceans.

But the art of Theatre and Opera will still be best on the stage in front of a living public. That's unique.
And you see how Musicians these days goes back to live performances - due to new technolo

On the other hand, about Ants:
We also have problems with Ants. Most buildings here, like our Summer Cottage, are made from wood. And the type of Ants most common here loves wood.
My cousin, next door to our Summerhouse, had to remove verything and build it up again thanks to Ants.
For some reason, we have not had that serious Ant attacks to our buildings, only 15 feet or so away.
It's allmost as understandable as our Garden are plentyful with Goatweed, while my Cousin has none.

Just called my daughter, she feels it is very close before "Baby Vagabond" will see the Daylight and smile to all of us. And you too of course.

Why "Baby vagabond"?
Ingelin is a Vagabond, have travelled around the Globe and worked in Europe, America and Asia.
And met her Husband in Hong Kong.
He is born in Germany, both his parents in Istanbul. And her parents in Oslo.
Small Planet.

T and A

Wednesday, October 14, 2009 at 1:09:00 PM PDT 

Anonymous Kevin Raftery
had this to say:

I love photographs of The U.S. pre-WW11 b/c it was such a beautiful looking country then...silent films are great for seeing what early 20th century America looked like.
When I see the HOLLYWOOD Sign I see DREAMLAND...what a great symbol it has become. Kevin

Thursday, October 15, 2009 at 10:39:00 AM PDT 

had this to say:

I've always wanted to see that sign, and your post made it seem as though I was almost there. Interesting to see the contrasts from then and now, and always a pleasure to read your descriptive words.

Thursday, October 15, 2009 at 7:35:00 PM PDT 

had this to say:

Hi LI girl! Been awhile since I post, been hanging out in Facebook to much and doing genealogy research! How far are you from Culver City? My daughter hikes the hills at the end of her road in Culver City and takes some great photos!! Off to LI next weekend for my homecoming football game it has been 43 years since I sat in those cold bleechers!!!

Friday, October 16, 2009 at 9:46:00 AM PDT 

had this to say:

Holloween was brought to the states by the irish, did you know that? I love the season but hate the "gore" of it!! I will have to do a post on Samhain - the true celebration of Fall! Have a wonderful day!! another LI girl maeve

Friday, October 16, 2009 at 9:49:00 AM PDT 

had this to say:

I hope the ants stay away! What a pain in the ass for you!

Sunday, October 18, 2009 at 6:31:00 PM PDT 

had this to say:

When I came from Paris to Los Angeles in 1961 and saw the Hollywood sign I felt like I was in a movie – I could not believe that I was actually seeing the sign “live”. I have seen it many times since and it always gives me a little shock. Your vintage photographs were so evocative and brought the whole post together quite nicely.

Sunday, October 18, 2009 at 9:16:00 PM PDT 

had this to say:

Oh, Naomi........I love this post! it makes me realize how little I know about a town that I grew up visiting at least once a month - it's seriously just a few miles up the road! My girls and I window shop on Rodeo drive whenever we can, and of course take in as many Dodgers games as we can each season, but I really need to get them up to the Hollywood sign.

Thank you for sharing this! I love visiting your blog. :)

Sunday, October 18, 2009 at 9:58:00 PM PDT 

had this to say:

Hi Naomi!! I'm glad you were able to get out and about, but I'm sorry you are still having ant problems. Those little varmints are such a pain. I hope the stinky stuff was gone when you returned home.

The sign is fascinating to read about. There are those letters looking down on Hollywood day in and day out!

Loved seeing those old cars!
I enjoyed this tour as I always enjoy your tours!! :)

Monday, October 26, 2009 at 7:31:00 PM PDT 

had this to say:

What a day Naomi!! What a wonderful day exploring Hollywood and yes, I saw the sign but from a far distance (we were shopping at one of the mall). Fantastic history and lovely pictures too, glad Seemah was with you ;D

Wednesday, October 28, 2009 at 5:07:00 PM PDT 

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Name: OldOldLady Of The Hills
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