View Single Post
Old Posted Aug 22, 2013, 5:08 AM
Lorendoc Lorendoc is offline
Registered User
Join Date: May 2013
Location: Los Angeles, California
Posts: 418
Lookout Mountain Inn FOUND - part 2

Lookout Mountain Inn, post-fire (c. 1924):

In my recent post, I mentioned that the solution for locating this place was matching the photographs unearthed by 3940dxer with an old topographic map I found at the web site. Close-in pictures, such as the one above, aren't much help due to their lack of identifiable nearby features.

Here the two key pictures and the old topo map:

photo in 3940dxer's collection


USGS Burbank 7.5' Quadrangle 1926 (surveyed 1924)

Looking at the photographs closely, I realized each photo had a different view of the same features: some trees (circled in red) and a road (blue).

The photo with the switchbacks I assumed was showing "Double Bow Knot Boulevard" from below. Here is a postcard view from the top of the switchbacks I previously posted:

...and here are the switchbacks on the old topo map:

So the second photo must have been taken from the north looking south up the switchback hill across Wonderland Avenue, from the high ground of what is now Skyline Drive.

That helps us orient where the first photo was taken from: it is looking southeast from a high point, which could only have been Wulff's Peak, the highest point between Laurel and Coldwater canyons. The Lookout Mountain Inn was indeed in Section 6/Lot D of Lookout Mountain Park, as the Assessor said. Here is the topo map with the lines of sight marked for each photo:

followed by the photos now with the map features marked:


The numbers in red are 1 = Cyprean Drive and 2 = Crescent Drive (aka "Double Bow Knot Boulevard"). On modern maps, Cyprean is shown as a short stub off Appian Way. But if you look at the bird's-eye view at or Google Earth, you see that the road continues over the crest of the hill, just as it did 100 years ago.

In the old days, Appian Way ended at the top of Lookout Mountain. The summit has been leveled off and is located at the hairpin turn on Appian Way on its modern way down towards Stanley Hills Drive. 3940dxer has found some good photos of this.

If we compare the LMI's location on the old topo map with a current map, we can see that it was located at what is now 2355 Sunset Plaza Drive. And this explains the Ginger Rogers connection: she lived at that address for a time before her 1940 divorce from Lew Ayres, who had earlier built his house on the site of the old Inn in the mid-30s.

The next post will describe what the LMI site is like today. I will also describe 3940dxer's and my efforts to get a modern version of the original panoramic view of the Inn from Wulff's Peak. This involved some low comedy, but I hope you will find the results interesting.

Last edited by Lorendoc; May 19, 2016 at 3:15 AM. Reason: replacing all deleted pictures, thanks Imageshack!
Reply With Quote