Santa Monica Boulevard’s End – 1929

1929 - Palisades Park at Santa Monica Blvd looking east

Another amazing shot by Wayne “Dick” Whittington. The USC Digital Library has a collection of his * ahem * 14,000+ scanned negatives. And they’re all available online.

This photo shows an important subject: the terminus of Santa Monica Boulevard at Ocean Avenue in Santa Monica. This was also a major junction of LA’s famous light rail Pacific Electric metro transit street cars. The Santa Monica line – one of the city’s oldest – travelled down the middle of Santa Monica Boulevard, all the way to Beverly Hills. The right-of-way of the “Lagoon Line”, built at the turn of the century by Moses Sherman, Abbot Kinney, and the LA Pacific Railroad – still exists now as Pacific Avenue in Venice, and once traversed a continuous coastal route (including its own bridge), through Playa del Rey, El Segundo, Manhattan, and Hermosa, finally terminating in Redondo Beach.

This property map from the 1920s shows the Pacific Electric street car trackage along Ocean Avenue, connecting the Westgate line in Brentwood to the "Santa Monica Line" on  Santa Monica Boulevard.
This property map from the 1920s shows the Pacific Electric street car trackage along Ocean Avenue, connecting the Westgate line in Brentwood to the “Santa Monica Line” on Santa Monica Boulevard.

Of significance is the visual indication that a portion of the “North Loop” around downtown Santa Monica, is still intact. This line was ultimately incorporated into the “Westage Line”, the service that would travel up down San Vicente, all the way to the “Old Soldiers’ Home”* (now the grounds of the West L.A. Veterans’ Administration campus) in Sawtelle (now LA’s “West LA”neighborhood).

* NOTE: This line should not to be confused with the Santa Monica & SoldiersHome Railroad, a horse-car line from the Ocean Park neighborhood of Santa Monica, down Nevada Avenue (now Wilshire Boulevard), to its intersection with San Vicente. That line was “electricized” (electrified) around 1900, and its corporate body and assets were ultimately to be acquired by the LAP.

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Tom Cornyn

I'm just a regular guy. I eat tires.

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