Saturday, August 28, 2021

Standing Up to City Council

Los Angeles is just as corrupt now as it was when Frank Shaw's goons were harassing reformers like Clifford Clinton.

Regular readers know that I was not called on for public comment during the Taix landmarking hearing. I wasn't the only member of the public who wasn't called.

This isn't an isolated event, either. The same thing happened with the Stires Staircase Bungalow Court and, more recently, the Chili Bowl.

This is a blatant violation of the Brown Act. Every member of the City Council is complicit (shame on all of them).

The LA Conservancy has filed suit in Los Angeles Superior Court. Put very simply, a judge can legally require the City to obey state law.

Read more here and sign the petition. There's a link to tip off the Feds, too, if you happen to be privy to anything illegal on a Federal level.

I'll be able to post more regularly once I get my internet access sorted. Coming soon: a study in the many, many changes to the French Hospital over the years.

Tuesday, August 3, 2021

The Mysterious Michel Clos

Per the request of new reader Lauren M., I have been looking into Mike Clos, brother of Adelina Clos Leonis. Unfortunately, he’s a little tricky to pin down.

Michel Lorretto Clos was born September 29, 1878 - one of five brothers (and one sister, Adelina). His name was sometimes listed as "Miguel" (his mother, Refugia Acevedo Clos, was from Mexico), but he was usually referred to simply as "Mike" and signed his name as “Mike Lorretto Clos”. He was of medium height and stout build, with brown hair and dark brown eyes. The Clos family had a sheep ranch near Lake Hughes.

The 1913 city directory lists Mike's occupation as "stockbuyer", with an address at 1361 E. 22nd Street. It isn't clear if the listing means "stockbuyer" as in "stockbroker" or as in a purchaser of livestock (ranching was still a thing in Southern California). Since Mike grew up on a ranch and became a rancher himself, my money is on the latter.

Mike registered for the World War One draft, giving his occupation as a mixer at the Globe Milling Company, located in modern-day Little Tokyo. The mill produced more flour than any other mill in Los Angeles.

Mike's address was listed as 1361 E. 22nd Street, three miles from his workplace. The Central Park Recreation Center now occupies the site. A 1922 listing puts Mike at 417 W. 51st Street.

Mike changed careers again in the 1920s - a voter registration list from 1924 gives his occupation as "rancher", along with the curious address of "10801 Englewood Avenue". Since Los Angeles doesn't have an Englewood Avenue, and since the list is for a specific voting precinct that does list multiple voters on Inglewood Avenue, I suspect this is a misspelling of "Inglewood". Inglewood was, of course, a former rancho that had belonged to Remi Nadeau, and it wasn't quite as built up then as it is now. 

Mike died June 16, 1926. He was only 47. He is buried at Calvary Cemetery with his wife Frances Santa Maria Clos, who passed away later that year. Mike’s headstone identifies him by the French version of his name: Michel L. Clos.

Why did Mike die at such a young age? Why did Frances, twelve years younger, also die so young? With obituaries for both of them proving maddeningly elusive, I can't say. (Yet. I am not a quitter!)