Jump to content
  • Come join the TowForce community.

    Sign in to get started and to receive Tower Down Notices.

1950's crash pics from Los Angeles


Recommended Posts

A few vintage crash pics from L.A. First up is a rollover, northbound US-101 at Santa Monica Blvd in Hollywood.  On scene is Muller Brothers Garage, the  LAPD contract tow for Hollywood Division, July 8, 1958.





Riverside Drive at Rodger Young Village (veteran's housing complex), near where the L.A. Zoo and Gene Autry Museum are today. March 22, 1952.



Another crash on the Hollywood Freeway (US-101) circa 1952. Muller Brothers with the Chevy/Holmes.



1st and Olive, Downtown L.A., October 1951. Marquette wrecker belongs to Viertel's Automotive, 237 S. Figueroa St. Downtown L.A. Rich Viertel was one of the first LAPD contract tow operators, his company still holds the contract for Central and Rampart divisions.



Runaway car, 3rd and Alameda, Downtown L.A. July 23, 1951. Truck is also from Viertel's Automotive.



Rollover the hard way S/B Santa Ana Freeway (US-101) south of 7th Street in Boyle Heights (East Los Angeles)   March 9, 1957. Wrecker is likely a Hollenbeck Automotive unit as they were the LAPD tow for that division. (CHP did not cover freeways within L.A. City limits, they were LAPD's responsibility until 1968)



Same wreck as the previous pic, photo taken from 7th Street overpass. The area looks different today, interchanges were built for 2 more freeways here (I-10 and SR-60) there are now traffic lanes where the embankments are in this pic. The Boyle Avenue overpass in the background looks similar today, though it was hollowed out on each side to accommodate the additional lanes of freeway traffic underneath. This area is known as the East L.A. interchange, or more recently the Eugene A. Obregon Memorial Interchange. PFC Obregon was a 19 year old kid from East L.A. who enlisted in the Marine Corps and won the Medal of Honor posthumously while serving with the 3rd Battalion, 5th Marines at Seoul, Korea in 1950.



Black & White Garage uprighting a cabbage truck in Pacoima, November 15, 1951. Note truck tied off to a Holmes tree. Black & White is still the contract tow for LAPD Foothill division.



Rollover, S/B Pasadena Freeway north of Orange Grove Ave. in South Pasadena. Photo taken from Meridian Ave. overcrossing, July 11, 1958.  Towing company is unknown, but likely Colliau's of South Pasadena.



Westbound Ramona Freeway (now San Bernardino Freeway, I-10) just west of Herbert Ave in East Los Angeles. The railroad tracks are L.A.'s Pacific Electric Railway, the famous "Red Car" system that was dismantled by GM, Standard Oil and Firestone rubber in order to sell L.A. more buses.



Rolled  CHP cruiser on US-101 at Malibu Rd. (now Las Virgenes Rd). near Calabasas. Nov. 25, 1951.



A-1 Garage pulling one out of a storefront, Normandie Ave. at Fountain, in Hollywood. June 29, 1951. Located at 38th and Broadway, and operating about 20 trucks, A-1 Garage was the King of heavy duty towing in L.A. until Continental Towing opened shop in 1958. The mechanics at A-1 were union, but when the wrecker drivers wanted to unionize as well, the owner decided to quit the towing biz.



Nice pic of  a '58 or '59 Chevy with what appears to be a Holmes 400RW. Judging from the telephone exchange prefix, these guys were in Hollywood.



Johnson's Super Service with what appears to be a '53 Chevy pulling one out of the Plymouth House Restaurant on the Sunset Strip near Doheny Dr., West Hollywood, June 1958. Johnson's is still the L.A. County Sheriff's contract tow for WeHo. The Key Club, a popular Sunset Strip music venue  now stands where the Plymouth House was.



Trailer loaded with chocolate syrup, Anaheim Street under Terminal Island Freeway (now SR-47), Wilmington (L.A. harbor district) April 10, 1957. Wrecker looks like a home built pipe job, my dad thinks it belonged to either City Tow in Long Beach or Bob Cass in Gardena.



  • Like 1

Phoenix Towing Company
1505 Bluff Rd.
Montebello, CA 90640

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Join the conversation

You can post now and register later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.

Reply to this topic...

×   Pasted as rich text.   Paste as plain text instead

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.


  • Create New...