March 28: This Date in Los Angeles Transportation History

1884:  The Sixth Street and San Fernando Street Railroad Company, and the East Los Angeles and Main Street Railroad Company are both deeded to the Central Railway Company.

 

 

1887:  The Pomona Street Railroad Company is incorporated.

 

 

1924:  The silent film “Girl Shy,” starring Harold Lloyd, has its premiere in New York.

It features Lloyd racing through Los Angeles in its multi-modal climax, utilizing not only a Pacific Electric streetcar, but several automobiles, a fire engine, a police motorcycle, and a horse wagon to rescue his love from marrying another man.  As Mark Shiel writes in Hollywood Cinema and the Real Los Angeles, Lloyd’s other films Get Out and Get Under (1920) and Hot Water (1924):

articulate struggles specific to Los angeles in the 1920s when streetcar use peaked, automobile ownership exploded, and pedestrians, horses, and trains were increasingly a thing of the past.

The elaborate streetcar scene in the film’s finale can be viewed here:

These scenes were filmed primarily on the Franklin Avenue Line along Yucca and Argyle Streets, near the present-day Capitol Records Building in Hollywood.

According to film historian John Bengston, who provides the photo overlays above and who the New York Times called “the great detective of silent film locations”:

Lloyd’s elaborate race to the altar [are] staged on the streets of Hollywood, San Fernando, Altadena, Palms, Culver City, Bunker Hill, Rampart Village, Fort Moore Hill, and downtown Los Angeles.

One can even spot the L.A. Gas Company storage tanks which stood near present day Union Station.

It appears that the entire film was produced during a six-week period.  More information can be found in the October 10, 1924 issue of Pacific Electric employee news magazine.