resort in 1903-4 by Abbott Kinney at the same time he was founding
TOUR 5 355
Venice. In 1911 it was annexed to Venice, and with Venice, was con-
solidated with Los Angeles in 1925.
The temperature of the ocean water along these beaches varies only
about 10 between winter and summer, thus inviting bathers the year
round. The winter low here, in January and February, is about 57,
while the summer high, in August, is about 67.
LOYOLA UNIVERSITY, 7101 W. Both St., occupies the flat tableland
at the crest of the Del Rey Hills. The four gray-brick buildings with
California Mission motifs, command a sweeping view. Conducted by
the Jesuits, Loyola University is an outgrowth of St. Vincent's College
founded in 1865. It has about 500 students.
Left from Playa del Rey on Culver Blvd., 02 m., to Pershing Ave.; R. on
Pershing Ave. 0.4 m. to Manchester Ave. (State 10) ; L. on Manchester Ave.
to INGLEWOOD, 6 m. (140 alt., 30,114 pop.), in the Centinela Valley district
of the coastal plain. Manufactures include textiles, furniture, enamelware,
Inglewood, incorporated in 1908, was platted in 1888 by Daniel Freeman
on parts of Rancho Sausal Redondo (round willow clump), granted by Gov-
ernor Alvarado to Antonio Avila in 1837; and Rancho Aguaje de la Centinela
(spring of the sentinel ranch), granted to Ygnacio Machado by Governor
Micheltorena in 1844. The city water supply is still drawn from Aguaje de la
Aloof among the clump of willows that gave Rancho Sausal Redondo its
name is the CENTINELA ADOBE (private), Freeman and Inglewood-Redondo
Blvd. The long rambling one-story house now has a wide iron-railed porch,
in place of the old clapboard corrector, and such improvements as hardwood
floors, electric lights, and plumbing. Nevertheless, some of the early-day
Mexican atmosphere remains. The adobe was built between 1833 and 1840
by Ygnacio Machado by the old Salt Road, whose course approximated that
of today's Inglewood-Redondo Boulevard ; it led from the pueblo of Los
Angeles to a lick, source of the salt used by early Angelenos. Machado and
his large family lived in the adobe until 1845, when it passed to Bruno Avila.
In 1856 the adobe and rancho were lost to Avila through foreclosure and
during the next 29 years passed through successive ownerships before being
bought by Daniel Freeman.
At the CHAPMAN SOUTH AMERICAN CHINCHILLA FARM, 4957 W. ic>4th St.
(adm. by telephone appointment only; free), the rare Andean Chinchilla,
bearer of the valuable pelt, has been raised for the commercial fur market
since 1923. On the farm are 30 units containing 900 pens in all to hold 1,650
animals. The animals sell at $1,600 each.
The chinchilla (Chinchilla laniger) is a meek-looking hopping rodent, about
the size of a large squirrel. It bears a soft, blue-gray fur, the blue merging
into pearl-gray and each hair tipped in black and slate blue. It attains a
length of approximately 8 inches and a weight of 20 ounces. A nocturnal
animal, it spends most of the day crouched in a box-nest. While working
in Chile in 1919, M. F. Chapman, an American engineer, saw one of the
rodents that an Indian had captured above snow line in the Andes. He soon
conceived the idea of raising the animals in the United States and hired
Chilean Indians to capture specimens. It took three years for Chapman to
obtain 15 animals, 12 males and 3 females. Four died before Chapman left
South America, 2 others succumbed on shipboard and 2 were born aboard.
Various experiments led to the building of these seasoned lumber structures
with pens of cloth spread over a wooden framework to house the animals. The
ii chinchillas soon increased to 70, and reports of the experiment sped through
the fur world. Chapman realized he had a world monopoly when the agent
of a Swiss syndicate asked to buy specimens. He refused to sell. The agent
356 LOS ANGELES
then allegedly stole 35 of the animals; he was trailed by detectives to a chin-
chilla farm that he established in Germany, but Chapman was unable to
identify the German specimens as his own.
CENTINELA PARK (plunge, wading pools; bowling, tennis, and horseshoe*
courts, baseball field, picnic ground with equipment), Redondo Blvd. and
Prairie Ave., is a sixty-acre beauty spot about Centinela Springs in the ravines
and gulches along the banks of Centinela Wash. Part of the area is land-
scaped; the rest is maintained in a natural state. Fossil remains of Pleistocene
animals uncovered in the gravel wash have brought the conclusion that the
springs were a prehistoric watering place. In the park are a large outdoor
amphitheatre and the VETERANS' MEMORIAL BUILDING, built with
WPA aid as a meeting place and recreational center for veterans.
Opposite Centinela Park are (R) the 300 gently rolling acres of INGLEWOOD
PARK CEMETERY, bounded by Inglewood-Redondo Blvd., Prairie Ave., Man-
chester and West Blvds. In the NEW MAUSOLEUM are displayed funeral urns,
statuary, and other art objects assembled by George H. Letteau, president
of the cemetery association; among them is a Greek sarcophagus dating from
100 B.C., that was uncovered along the Appian Way near Rome.
HOLLYWOOD PARK (racing daily except Sun. and Mon., 47 days beginning
late in May; adm. clubhouse $2.20, grandstand $1.10), is bounded by Century,
Crenshaw, and Manchester Blvds. and Prairie Ave., in the southeastern sec-
tion of Inglewood. Owned and operated by the Hollywood Turf Club, which
in turn is largely owned by motion-picture celebrities, the park is laid out in
the grand Hollywood manner. Its biggest event is the $50,000 Hollywood
Gold Cup Handicap. The streamlined white concrete-and-steel CLUBHOUSE
AND GRANDSTAND is banded with tiers of windows. The grandstand, seating
12,000 is accessible from the clubrooms ; it is elaborate with terraces, lounges,
and boxes. In the enclosed paddock is an amphitheatre accommodating 3,500.
A projection machine flashes pictures of close finishes to the audience; from
a circular lounge 500 persons can watch the races while lunching; the parking
area holds 22,000 automobiles; in the stable are 1,200 stalls and 300 tack and
feed rooms; the infield of the one-mile oval track is elaborately landscaped
and contains three artificial lakes where ducks, geese, and swans swim. During
the racing season a Goose Girl in Dutch costume drives her feathered flocks
among the flora.
Right from Inglewood 1 m. on Inglewood-Redondo Blvd. to the Los ANGELES
MUNICIPAL AIRPORT, Mines Field, in Los Angeles, on Inglewood's southwestern
border. In 1939 the field had accommodations for 90 planes. The field is to
have five paved runways, allowing landings and take-offs in any direction.
The NORTH AMERICAN AVIATION FACTORY, entered from Imperial Highway,
is on municipal airport grounds leased from the city. It builds both military
and commercial planes. The company, a subsidiary of General Motors Cor-
poration, opened this plant in 1936.
The EL SEGUNDO PLANT OF THE DOUGLAS AIRCRAFT COMPANY (see Santa
Monica), east of the North American Aviation factory, also manufactures
military and commercial airplanes.
Also along Imperial Highway is the new INTERSTATE AIRCRAFT AND ENGI-
NEERING COMPANY FACTORY, which manufactures equipment and precision in-
struments, handles sub-assembly contracts for North American and Douglas,
and makes aircraft armament.
At 17.9 m. Trolley Way becomes Vista del Mar.
At 21.3 m. is the junction with Grand Ave.
Left on Grand Avenue to EL SEGUNDO, 0.6 m. (35 alt., 3,738 pop.), which
grew up around the STANDARD OIL REFINERY. The plant covers more than a
thousand acres south of El Segundo Boulevard. Representing an investment
of $50,000,000, the refinery has a capacity of 100,000 barrels of crude oil a
day. Its chain of 14 sub-surface storage reservoirs will hold some 21 million
barrels (the largest reservoir covers 18 acres), and above-ground steel tanks
TOUR 5 357
store an additional seven million barrels. The refinery obtains crude oil from
nearly every field in California, and is connected by pipe lines with all major
fields in the Los Angeles basin. The plant, opened in 1911, was named El
Segundo (the second), because it was the company's second plant in the state.
The EL SEGUNDO OIL FIELD, on the city's eastern outskirts, has been an
active producer since the Republic Petroleum Company made its first strike in
1935. The 51 wells produce about 3,450 barrels of oil daily.
By Vista del Mar at 21.7 m. the long, slender STANDARD OIL COM-
PANY PIER juts from the beach above a web of pipe lines from the re-
finery. Here Standard Oil tankers load gasoline and fuel oil from the
storage tanks at El Segundo. Because of the oil smudge few bathers
come to this beach.
At 23.1 m. Vista del Mar becomes Highland Ave.
MANHATTAN BEACH, 23.7 m. (46 to 100 alt., 6,398 pop.),
differs from most southern California beach communities in its pro-
hibition of roller coasters, games of chance, and other concessions of
similar nature. It is part of an unbroken four-mile stretch of houses
along the beach and crests of the sand dunes. The site, once part of
Rancho Sausal Redondo, was developed as a real estate subdivision in
1897, but the town was not incorporated until 1912. Most important
assets are the two miles of municipally controlled beach, free of under-
tow or rip-tides, and the long municipal pier that is very popular
among fishermen. There is also a well equipped municipal picnicking
At 24.7 m. is the junction with Longfellow Ave.; R. from High-
land Ave. on this route to Hermosa Ave., 24.8 m.; L. on Hermosa
Ave., now the main route.
Hermosa (beautiful) Beach, 25.8 m. (12 to 150 alt., 7,197 pop.),
founded in 1901, is a larger, less restricted counterpart of Manhattan
Beach, with which it merges. Amusement concessions support many
of the inhabitants. Two miles of beach, a ballroom built over the sea,
a municipal stadium with adjoining bowling greens, tennis courts and
a baseball diamond, a large pier for fishermen and barge service for
deep-sea fishing are the chief recreational facilities.
At 27.4 m. is the junction with Pacific Ave.; L. from Hermosa
Ave. on this route.
REDONDO BEACH, 27.6 m. (20 to 150 alt., 13,092 pop.), dat-
ing from 1887, was a fashionable spot in the 1890'$. Although it is
now largely a middle-class residential town, water sportsmen, fisher-
men, and other vacationists still come here. The heart of the amuse-
ment and beach-front section is Pacific Avenue between Carnelian
Street and Torrance Boulevard.
A long-dreamed-of harbor at last began to materialize in 1938,
when construction on the first unit of a breakwater was started. The
half-mile breakwater is a rock-fill jetty starting at the foot of Tenth
Street and angling southward.
Left from Redondo Beach on Torrance Blvd. to the TORRANCE OIL FIELD,
22 m., the rigs of which extend along both sides of the road between Redondo
358 LOS ANGELES
Beach and Torrance. The field, opened in 1922, daily produces (1939) about
21,500 barrels from 702 wells.
TORRANCE, 4.6 m. (75 alt., 9,950 pop.), was established on a potato and
bean patch in 1911 by Jared Sidney Torrance, a Pasadena utilities magnate.
Before laying out the town the founder consulted various city planners, finally
selecting Frederick Law Olmsted, Jr., to draw up the plans. His design pro-
vided for functional efficiency in placing the various units of the community:
factories are on the edge of the city, in positions where prevailing winds will
carry the smoke away from the city; the retail district, whose center is at
Torrance Boulevard and El Prado, lies midway between this outer factory
fringe and the residential areas; numerous diagonal streets provide shortcuts
between the retail, residential and industrial areas. El Prado (The Prome-
nade), running diagonally through the center of the town, is a wide parkway,
three blocks long. About it are grouped the City Hall, the public library, the
Chamber of Commerce building, the post office and other service structures.
The Torrance area produces flowers in large quantities for the commercial
market, specializing in gardenias and orchids. The T. H. W RIGHT GREEN-
HOUSES, i9Oth St. and Hawthorne Ave., grows more than five million gardenias
a year for West Coast and other markets. It ships to New York City daily
by planes. A new method of orchid culture being employed in this area cuts
in half the time formerly required for producing the blooms. In the past,
from five to ten years were required to bring an orchid plant to its first
blooming stage. Sterile soil, from which every bit of organic matter has been
removed by heat, is used. The orchid sprouts are fed a preparation con-
taining the chemical elements needed for their growth and development.
Temperature and lighting are automatically regulated ; the buildings containing
the plants are sealed; hydrometers measure the moisture; and rain is produced
The COLUMBIA STEEL CORPORATION PLANT, Torrance Blvd. and Arlington
Ave., operated by a subsidiary of the United States Steel Corporation, is the
city's largest industrial establishment, producing about 150,000 tons of iron
and steel annually. It has open-hearth and electric furnaces, structural and
merchant-bar rolling mills, sheet mills for black and galvanized iron sheets,
and a foundry.
In Redondo Beach is the junction with US lOiA; south (straight
ahead) on US lOiA, now the main route.
At 28.9 m. is the junction with Park Way.
Right on Park Way 0.1 m. to Catalina Ave.; L. on Catalina, which be-
comes Granvia La Costa, to PALOS VERDES (green trees) Civic CENTER, 3 m.,
the landscaped cultural and trading center of the PALOS VERDES ESTATES, a
residential area in rolling terrain along the high north and west slopes of
the Palos Verdes promontory. The Civic Center, around Malaga Cove Plaza,
at Granvia La Costa and Granvia Valmonte, is surrounded by stores and
public structures. The white expanse of the Mediterranean style buildings is
softened by evergreens.
Right from Granvia La Costa on Palos Verdes West Dr. Emerging from a
wooded section, the route runs along steep cliffs, that afford a striking view
of the curving, crowded beaches along Santa Monica Bay. Pushing far west-
ward into the sea is the deep blue mass of the Santa Monica Mountains. The
beds of kelp seen in the ocean here as great brown patches on the water well
beyond the surf line extend almost uninterruptedly along the coast from central
California to Mexico. One of the largest plants in the world, sometimes
attaining a length of 700 feet or more, this giant alga has no roots; it anchors
its tough sleek cables to rocks on the ocean bed by means of a hold-fast, and
draws its nourishment entirely from the sea water. The blades the rubbery,
rippled, olive-brown "leaves" of the kelp spread out on the surface of the
water in tangled masses kept afloat by air-filled bulbs, one at the stem end of
TOUR 5 359-
There are three varieties of the giant kelp, but only one, Macrocystis
pyrifera, which attains its greatest growth in these coastal waters, is harvested
for commercial use. It absorbs minerals from the sea water, particularly
iodine, calcium, phosphorus, potassium, magnesium, and sulphur. From this
kelp are manufactured iodine, acetone, livestock feed, fertilizer, and dietetic
The several converting plants in the Harbor District have kelp-cutting
barges operating between the San Pedro breakwater and Redondo Beach. The
typical kelp cutter, which is like an immense mowing machine with vertical
blades in addition to the horizontal knives, is operated by a gas engine; it
shears off the tops of the plants in a swath 18 feet wide, gathering 200 tons in
six hours. A kelp bed can be recut every four months, so the supply is vir-
tually inexhaustible. The harvested kelp is ground coarsely, macerated, and
then placed in a drier a huge revolving steel tube with a gas furnace at one
end and a fan at the other. There the pulp is subjected to temperatures de-
creasing from 1400 to 300 F. The dried pulp is ground again and emerges a
A rise of the road at 6.3 m. suddenly opens a view to the southwest. Out
across the sea, long, mountainous Santa Catalina Island (see Tour 5A) f 24
miles offshore, is seen.
POINT VICENTE LIGHTHOUSE, 82 m., stands in a three-acre reservation at the
cliff's edge, surrounded by the U.S. Coast Guard Administration (see The
Harbor] buildings and radio antennas.
PORTUGUESE BEND, 11 m., a deep curve in the coast, is one of several points
where steep trails zig-zag down to the rocky beach. The waters offshore are a
favorite haunt of porpoises, who are often plainly visible from the road. Occa-
sionally a whale is seen, sometimes blowing streams of air and water straight
HARBOR LOOKOUT, 15.8 m., a broad parking place on a promontory, affords
a view of the entire harbor, from the breakwater at its entrance to the farthest
interior slough (see The Harbor). San Pedro is just below the lookout point,
and Wilmington (L). On the opposite side of the main channel is elongated
Terminal Island, with fishing wharves, canneries, and shipbuilding plants. In
the background are the modern buildings of Long Beach, flanked (L) by the
derrick-forested heights of Signal Hill (see Long Beach), and part of the
time, by the gray Pacific Fleet.
East of the Park Way junction, US lOiA, the Redondo- Wilming-
ton Boulevard, skirts the northern edge of the Palos Verdes Estates
WILMINGTON, 36.5 m. (see The Harbor) is the point of
embarkation for boats to Santa Catalina Island (see Tour 5 A).
LONG BEACH, 41.5 m. (o to 47 alt., 164,271 pop.) (see Long
Points of Interest: Bixby Park, Municipal Pier, Marine Racing Course,
United States Pacific Fleet, Alamitos Bay Yacht Harbor, Cerritos Adobe,
Curbstone Market, Los Alamitos Adobe, and others.
The SAN GABRIEL RIVER, 48.1 m., is the boundary between
Los Angeles and Orange Counties.
The SEAL BEACH OIL FIELD (L) straddles the county line. In
1938 from its 113 wells its average daily production was 8,118 barrels.
SEAL BEACH, 48.5 m. (9 alt., 1,553 pop.)> in the southwestern
corner of Orange County, lies on a flat projection of the tidal flats,
with the Bay of Naples on one side and many-armed Alamitos Bay
on the other. The town is dominated by the massive Los ANGELES
360 LOS ANGELES
BUREAU OF POWER AND LIGHT GENERATING PLANT (R). Seal
Beach was so named because of the numerous seals that in former days
played in its offshore waters.
Between the Orange County line and Newport Bay the highway
is on an embankment, behind which extend miles of shallow tidal chan-
nels. Spongy marshes are dotted with tufted islands of salt-grass.
White cranes stand solemnly on long legs in the shallow water, or
wing slowly across the waste of marshy islands.
This shore is one of those most frequently visited by schools of
grunion, little smelt-like fish of the silversides family that run up on
the sand to spawn during spring and summer. It is the only fish
that spawns in this extraordinary manner, and it does so only on
southern California beaches. Spawning occurs at the bi-weekly high-
tide intervals from March to August, always on the second, third, and
fourth nights of the maximum tide. For many years the grunion runs
have been met by crowds of amateur fishermen who bring picnic sup-
pers and build bonfires on the sand. They used to bring all sorts of
improvised equipment small nets, kitchen sieves, sink strainers, win-
dow screens, baskets and what not but by 1926 the grunion appeared
so decimated that state laws were passed forbidding the use of any
equipment for taking them; so they can now be taken only with the
Although the California State Fisheries Laboratory keeps a grunion
timetable and publishes in the newspapers the tide schedules on which
they operate and the possible positions of the run, many a grunion-
fishing party waits in vain for the fish to appear not because the
grunion have skipped a spawning, but because it is impossible to tell
with accuracy just which beach they will choose on a particular night.
Not until 1919 was it established that the grunion run up the
beach to deposit eggs, not to dance in the moonlight as unscientific
observers had always believed. Male and female fish are swept up the
beach together, and the moment the wave leaves them the female digs
tail-first half the length of her body into the sand and deposits her
eggs, which the male instantly fertilizes. The next wave sweeps the
fish back into the ocean. The process takes about 30 seconds, and is
repeated by others with each wave that breaks. A run may last more
than an hour. Because the fish always wait until after the tide has
begun to recede before they begin their run, succeeding waves do not
reach the deposited eggs. They remain incubating under the sand for
two weeks, when the high tide comes in again and washes them into
the ocean, where they hatch at once.
The older females spawn every two weeks from March to August,
the younger ones from April to June. No grunion-fishing is permitted
during April, May, and June, when all females are spawning.
SURF SIDE, 50.2 m., is a collection of one-story frame beach cot-
tages, some built on the tidal flats, others hugging the shore on the
sand strip. Southward, the Surf Side cottages merge with those of
SUNSET BEACH COLONY, 50.6 m.
TOUR 5 361
HUNTINGTON BEACH, 57.3 m. (20 alt., 3,378 pop.), is the
chief oil-producing center of Orange County. This oil field has yielded
more than 270,000,000 barrels during 18 years of operation.
Southward US lOiA follows the crest of a low bluff bordering the
sea. A phalanx of spidery oil derricks walls the beach from the in-
terior and the rank smell of crude petroleum smothers the ocean salt
smell. Day and night, grotesque counterweights revolve clumsily on
the riding beams as the oil is sucked up. Below a concrete retaining
wall is the wide beach; deep beneath this beach and the ocean is an
estimated half billion dollars' worth of unrecovered oil. Because drill-
ing on the beach is prohibited a technique has been developed locally
the so-called "whipstocking" whereby wells are drilled at an acute
angle to reach under the beach and sea.
The wide mouth of the Santa Ana River, principal waterway of
Orange County, is spanned at 60.8 m. The river rises in the San
At 62.3 m. is the junction with a ramp.
Right on this ramp 0.1 m. to State 55; R. on State 55, which runs along
a narrow sandspit between ocean and bay, to NEWPORT BEACH, 0.8 m.
(0.15 alt.; 4,438 pop.). This town and Balboa are Orange County's principal
seaside resort areas. Newport Beach is on the northern end of a long narrow
sandspit, so near sea level that unusually high tides, driven by strong winds,
sometimes pound the town's, business district. Newport Beach was founded
in 1892 simultaneously with Balboa. In 1902 the two communities were in-
corporated as one city; today the municipality also includes Newport Heights
and Corona del Mar on the mainland, and Balboa Island and Lido Isle in the
bay. The population of the area multiplies several times on week ends and
during the summer.
The frame and stucco dwellings of Newport Beach merge with those of
BALBOA (6 alt.), at 3 m. LIDO ISLE and BALBOA ISLAND, in the bay, are
elaborately developed summer-home districts with stucco villas of the Medi-
terranean type. A viaduct at the northern end of the peninsula provides
access to Lido Isle; a ferry to Balboa Island.
A narrow opening at the southern end of the sandspit connects Newport
Bay with the ocean. The dredged harbor is the home port of many pleasure
and commercial craft. Development of the bay began in 1920, when Orange
County appropriated half a million dollars for the purpose. Further develop-
ment was completed in 1936.
South of the ramp-junction US lOiA runs between tidal flats and
the bay in view of Lido Isle, Balboa Island, and the sail-dotted waters
of Newport Bay.
At the southern end of the bay are the Mediterranean type resi-
dences of CORONA DEL MAR (crown of the sea), 66 m. f a part of
Newport. They are grouped between the highway and sea below the
San Joaquin Hills. The bar east of the harbor entrance is popular
with surfboard devotees, having exceptionally favorable combers for the
sport. BAY ISLAND, just offshore, was the home of Madame Helene
Modjeska, the Polish-born actress, from the spring of 1907 until her
death in April 1909 (see Tour 4) ', it is sometimes called Modjeska