Tag Archives: historic landmarks

At LAist: Bob Baker Marionette Theater declared a landmark

The Bob Baker Marionette Theater by Xurble on Flickr

The Bob Baker Marionette Theater by Xurble on Flickr

The nearly-50-year-old puppetry theater of legendary marionette master Bob Baker was declared a cultural landmark by the city yesterday.

Check out this blogger’s contributed full story about the Bob Baker Marionette Theater at  LAist.com!

Return to Linda Vista Community Hospital

Please note: The author of this blog does not encourage trespassing in any way, shape, or form.  The Linda Vista Community Hospital is currently not open to the public and is available as a filming location; visit http://www.lindavistalocation.com for more information.

Linda Vista Community Hospital parking sign

This shot was originally taken during a previous visit to the Linda Vista Community Hospital, formerly the Santa Fe Coastlines Hospital.

Fifty years ago at Linda Vista Community Hospital, doctors would have been calling out to nurses for patients’ records, the nurses would have hurried to the patients’ bedsides in scrubs, and the patients might have been complaining about the obligatory tasteless hospital food.  Today, this scenario would only take place after the words “Lights, camera, action” were shouted after the snap of a clapperboard.

As promised in a previous post, another visit was paid to the Linda Vista Community Hospital in Boyle Heights (Unfortunately, the usual DSLR camera used for shooting was out of commission for the day, hence the camera phone photos).

The prior post incorrectly stated the hospital was built in 1937; it was in fact established in 1904, says Francis Kortekaas, who has managed the location for the last 20 or so years.

Originally built to service Santa Fe Railroad employees, the Santa Fe Coastlines Hospital had several construction phases in 1925, 1931, 1938, 1961 and 1966, according to the California State Parks’ Office of Historical Preservation.  The different decades’ architectural styles are evident in the building’s six floors, and a stroll through the hospital will transport visitors through time from Classic Revival to Art Deco to Streamline Modern periods.  Eventually, in 1937, it became the Linda Vista Community Hospital.

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A New Day, A New Flight

Angels Flight has history...After closing in 1969, re-opening in 1996, and closing again in 2001, the landmark is ready for a comeback.

Angels Flight has history...After closing in 1969, re-opening in 1996, and closing again in 2001, the landmark is ready for a comeback. (Full disclosure: My father worked at the architectural design company for Angels Flight's '96 re-opening)

Upon first glance, the roughly 300-foot-long – or short, depending on how you look at it – Angels Flight Railway looks like an oddity in the midst of Downtown L.A.’s Bunker Hill district at 4th and Hill Streets.  Surrounded by glass and metal skyscrapers, concrete buildings and some greenery here and there, the funicular’s two orange and black cable cars, Olivet and Sinai have shuttled many Angelenos throughout the decades.

The railway was built in 1901 by Colonel J. W. Eddy, a teacher, Civil War veteran, Illinois State Representative and miner, according to records from the Historic American Buildings Survey.  Eddy moved to L.A. in 1895 and saw a need for an easier way for residents to go up the hill “other than by foot or horse and buggy.”  On its grand opening on December 31, passengers rode free all day on Olivet and Sinai (which were painted white back then) and “punch was served by the ladies who resided nearby on Olive Heights.”

Angels Flight was designated as a landmark on August 6, 1962 by the Cultural Heritage Board of Los Angeles because it was “the last remaining cable railway” in L.A.; sadly, it was closed seven years later in 1969 as Bunker Hill became more commercial and less residential.   In 1996, Angels Flight was finally re-opened, and (full disclosure!) because it was one of the projects of the architectural design company that my father worked for, me and my family were among the first to ride the railway.   However, it was shut down again in 2001 due to an accident in which the operating mechanisms failed, killing 83-year-old rider Leon Praport.  It was the second death in Angels Flight’s history; in 1913, “damage to the cable allowed one of the cars to go careening back down the incline.  Passengers were badly shaken” but one woman died after she jumped out of the car.

Last week, passersby may have seen Sinai and Olivet running up and down their tracks for the first time in 2009 (the first test runs had taken place in early November of last year), and according to Angels Flight Railway Foundation President John Welborne.  One man even waited eagerly to pay the 25-cent fare and be shuttled up to California Plaza at the top of the hill,  but the ready passenger had to be turned away because the landmark’s final testing and safety certifications are still in process, said Welborne.

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