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The Hollywood Photographs Blog

History of the Hollywood Sign

The Hollywood Sign

The Hollywood sign is the most recognized sign in the world.  Originally constructed in 1923, the sign read Hollywoodland because it was built to be an advertising sign for the Hollywoodland real estate development at the sign’s feet.  The sign was constructed using fifty-foot telephone poles as the main supports. Wooden beams and  guide wires tied the sign together and then faced with sheet metal.  For  the first two years, the sign was lighted with 4000 incandescent light bulbs, which were replaced by Albert Kothe, then bulbs burned out.

Refurbished Sign 

As time went on, the sign became a victim to the weather – wind, rain and sun.  By 1949, the letter H had blown down in a windstorm and the rest of the sign was in serious disrepair.  The County of Los Angeles, along with the Hollywood Chamber of Commerce, took...

Great Hollywood Images at hollywoodphotographs.com website

Great Hollywood Images

Some of the most collectible and popular photographs are Hollywood images.  Searching for, and locating, those images used to be very difficult.  However, with the advent of the internet, searching for Hollywood images is now very easy.

The largest collection of Hollywood images is on the internet at hollywoodphotographs.com.  The web site has been existence for about ten years and today there are over 8000 photographs, covering more than ninety subject categories.

Once on the web site, a visitor can go to the second page to see all the subject categories of photos.  Upon clicking on a category, the visitor will see the first page of thumbnail images.  Upon clicking on the image, it will enlarge. Clicking on it again will enlarge it one more time.

Images

One way to quickly locate a specific subject is to enter the keyword in the SEARCH box and...

Hollywood Canteen Photos

Hollywood Canteen

The Hollywood Canteen was the jewel in the crown of World War II Hollywood.  From 1942 to 1945, over three million servicemen came through its doors on their way to fight in the Pacific – some never to return.  There, in a converted barn in the heart of Hollywood, soldiers were fed, entertained by and danced with some of the biggest stars in the world. The Canteen was free to all servicemen and women, regardless of race, inviting them to jive to the music of Kay Kyser and Harry James, laugh at Bob Hope’s jokes, be handed sandwiches by Rita Hayworth, or dance with Hedy Lamarr. Knowing that they were so appreciated, the soldiers were armed with the kinds of hope and encouragement that would help them win the war. The Canteen was founded by Bette Davis, John Garfield...

Famous Schwab's Pharmacy

Schwab's Opens

Schwab's Pharmacy opened at 8024 Sunset Boulevard in 1932, and was run by brothers Bernard, Leon, Jack and Martin Schwab. They had purchased a failing drug store and decided to capitalize on the local business from nearby studios, like Paramount, RKO, and Columbia.

What made Schwab's unlike other drug stores was the fact that it became a gathering place for actors. Not just celebrities, mind you--although they were among the clientele in the pharmacy's impressive Rolodex--but mostly working, or hoping-to-be-working, actors, who called the place "headquarters" and who spent hours at the counter chatting with each other and perusing the trade magazines. It was not uncommon to see celebrities, such as,...

Early Hollywood movie making

Movie Come To Hollywood

Shortly after the turn of the twentieth century, most of the film making companies were located in the New Jersey area and in Chicago. All the movies made then were ”silents” in which there was on audio when the movie was being shown.  All the cameras were operated by cranking a handle that moved the film through the camera.  Almost all the films were made outdoors, usually on a wooden platform stage with walls on three sides. It wasn’t until about 1913 that enclosed glass stages were used so filming could take place indoors. Because of climatic conditions in the east and in the mid-west, film production slowed dramatically when winter set in.

By 1910, film companies began searching for places where movies could be made all year long.  The first company to establish a permanent studio in Hollywood was the Nestor’s Film Co., from Bayonne, New Jersey.  They...