Van Nuys Blvd. at Friar, Van Nuys, CA, 1950


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Here is a great old photograph of Van Nuys Blvd at Friar St. in 1950.

In 1950, there was still diagonal parking along the boulevard, an arrangement that helped to create a sense of enclosure and neighborliness.   Some of the signs along the street were Whelan Drugs, Van Nuys Stationery Store and Bill Kemp Sportswear for Men. On the left side of the photo:  a See’s Candies and other small retailers whose facades have been modernized behind flat slabs.

This bustling scene was already on the way out as regional shopping centers, such as Valley Plaza (1951), made their way into the San Fernando Valley and lured customers with lots of parking and giant stores.

While the massive migration of illegal immigration has certainly changed Van Nuys, the post-war decisions of Los Angeles, her government, her people and her power brokers, to widen streets and remove streetcars, to build freeways not trains, and to develop every last square inch of orange grove and meadow, these are the true killers that robbed us of our historic inheritance.

Life was more civilized back then and we can only look back in awe.

This photograph is offered for sale at DECOR ART GALLERIES   12149 Ventura Blvd. Studio City, CA 91604   (818) 755-0755

4 thoughts on “Van Nuys Blvd. at Friar, Van Nuys, CA, 1950

  1. Even though I wasn’t born until 1964, I understand totally what you mean about our historic inheritance! Thanx for the great photo!

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      1. BTW, I lived as a kid on Calvert St. off of Vesper, not far from the location in the photo. We lived there from about 1966-1974. Our house, a one-bedroom with the mission style tile roof(probably dating from the Twenties, I believe)was torn down along with others that were like it next door & behind us, around 2005-2006 in order to put up a generic-looking, ugly condo. All in the name of progress, right??? NOT!!

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      2. Sad. All the torn down old houses would be worth a fortune today if they had been restored.

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