I just stumbled across this amazing collection of vintage Los Angeles postcards collected by the folks at LA Nocturne. The one pictured above was postmarked 6/25/1949 and includes a note on the back from one friend to another saying “Just a line to say hello from sunny California. Will be home next week – Everything lovely here – lots of flowers and everything.” This is one of the “Large Letter” series, but they also have specific sections and buildings around town. I love this image of Broadway from Fifth, and this 1947 view of City Hall is about as good as it gets. But there are also some gems like this card showing trolly cars on Spring Street, or Grauman’s with nothing around it. Even better, some of the pages have details on the images from the cards, like this snip of a scene from downtown:
Until 1965, City Hall was the tallest building in the City of Los Angeles. Building codes outlawed any occupied structure over 150 feet. This explains the many tall faux facades, spires, and clock towers you will see in the downtown area. The buildings left of City Hall are, from left to right, the State Building, the Old Courthouse right before demolition, the Hall of Records, and the Hall of Justice – the only one still standing, but red-tagged due to the January 94 earthquake.