Mystery at La Brea and Hollywood


Somehow surviving years of asphalt and road work in front of a Hollywood Bouleveard bus bench is what appears to be a message over sixty years old. Carved into the pavement, perhaps with a stick or maybe a finger, are the names and date:

Charlie Glen Emerson And Olivia Neuton Emerson And Daughters
4 July 1944

It begs numerous questions, and yields no answers, beginning with: who were the Emersons?

Locals coming up to Hollywood for an Independence Day parade? Out of town visitors thrilled to be in Tinseltown?

Who wrote the message? Was is Charlie? Olivia? Or one of the daughters? How many daughters were there? And how odd is the name “Olivia Neuton”?

Was Charlie the husband of Olivia, or by chance just her brother in-law – Charlie’s brother may have been serving in World War II, then in full swing?

And was this really sketched in on the Fourth of July, 1944? Would wet cement have been poured that day?

I’ve tried to find some sort of match of the names via assorted search terms but have come up empty.

Assuming Charlie and Olivia were adults when their names were etched, its unlikely, albeit possibly, that they’re still alive – but the “daughters” could very well be, although roughly in their 60s or 70s. Still if they could be found, this unofficial Hollywood monument might be a fascinating discovery for their family. Maybe they’re aware of it, maybe they aren’t… but its a small mystery that is somewhat nagging at me.

Any suggestions on how I could approach this further?

(while hard to make out, more photos of the names in cement can be found here)

4 thoughts on “Mystery at La Brea and Hollywood”

  1. Interesting jump there djg but a quick google confirmed what I thought…she’s English raised in Australia. Not born until 1948 and didn’t arrive here until the early 1970’s.
    The mystery is a good one, but then again my friends and I used to carve “jesse james was here” in cave walls all over MO while in highschool just to bait the local sleuth’s. Could this be the same?

  2. I love old concrete writings. I think it could have been inscribed on July 4th, being a holiday and all. It may have been an emergency patch job after fixing a water main. There appears to be a water access port in the top left corner of the slab.

    As for the family, dad produced war bond commercials and military instructional movies over at United Artists Studios. They lived on Poinsettia and later that summer, the entire family died on their way to visit cousins in Iowa when their 1940 Hudson was incinerated after colliding with a train carrying artillery to the Pacific theater.

  3. Excellent find, and from my layman’s perspective judging from the wear it could very likely be from that date.

    I’ve been snapping the “streetfiti” I come across around the Silver Lake/Echo Park/Angelino Heights area this past year and the oldest dated one I’ve found so far is from 1959 on Doulgas south side of Sunset:

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