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Old Posted Apr 19, 2012, 10:39 PM
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Beaudry Beaudry is offline
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So we're all familiar with the Old Central No 1, as seen in the image above and below:


It stands out in lots of images taken from the Hill near Court looking toward Broadway...largely because of its striking two-tone character:


heavy rusticated stone at the bottom, and what appears to be stucco above. Which always kind of bugged me, so I did a little digging...

...and I was right, it was a solidly Romanesque building of all wrought stone. Here's an image from the Times in 1896, accompanying a blurb about the new jail.

Here's a shot from the Los Angeles Herald, September 1908 (folk are gathered at the station to hear word of Captain Auble) --

-- A bit about the jail: the front of the first floor was for the officers and detectives offices. The back of the first floor was all jail, a 10x30 corridor lined with 24 cells on either side. Attached was a receiving hospital, basically a white tiled room with a big skylight. The courts, judges chambers, witness and jury rooms, clerks offices and the like were on the second floor. There was a second floor jail area for the high-security inmates, a female ward (with special accommodations for insane female prisoners) and a juvie ward.

I was shocked that, in my investigations, I found that while I'd deduced the building to be Caukin & Haas (they famously of the City Hall and first Times building, etc.) it was in fact a Charles L. Strange. Strange was the City Superintendent of Buildings, and an architect, known for the red sandstone courthouse (not ours -- theirs), & much of Pasadena's Castle Green.

Love to know when it got modernized -- I would've assumed that the pointed parapet came down after the '49 ordinance but it was obviously gone when they shot Shockproof in '48. I'm guessing it's a late-30s remodel but more digging needs to be done...
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