Untold LA

Photographing the Astonishing Homes of LA's West Adams District

In 2012 photographer Jett Loe encountered the forgotten Los Angeles District of West Adams, the original wealthy area of town, the “Beverly Hills before Beverly Hills.”  Filled with an astonishing collection of Victorian and Craftsman homes in vibrant, diverse neighborhoods West Adams proved to be a revelation.  Following a successful Kickstarter campaign Jett spent two years producing this mammoth delight of a book that documents the variety of homes and people in the area.

Totaling a fully interactive 365 pages with 500 photos, 70 oral history audio clips from West Adams residents and two hours of behind-the-scenes video commentary, Untold LA is a massive treasure trove for lovers of Los Angeles, American history and architecture.

Filtering by Tag: transitional craftsman

West Adams Transitional Craftsman

On Page 321 of the iBook we have this Craftsman seen late at night one of the main streets of North University Park.

I photographed this house repeatedly during the two-year process of producing the book; below, in an unused frame, is the house during the day in which the front-yard's two large palm trees can be clearly seen.

Henry Jensen Home in Harvard Heights

[As part of the remit to make the Untold LA iPad Book available to as many people as possible I'll be posting photos from the book in sequential order on a regular basis until it is completely online.]

In the Harvard Heights Chapter, pages 242-249, we have the Henry Jensen home. Built in 1909 by LA movie theatre magnate Jensen the home is a collision of styles; note the paired classical columns and closed second story porch in the photo above.

Opening the front door we see one of the Jensen's many brick fireplaces amongst other things.

Original fixtures can be found in every room.

We descend towards the home's unique basement with hits hand-painted tapestried walls and elegant tiles.

Other aspects of the Jensen: a sitting room just off the main living room; you'll find original stained glass throughout the home.

The MacGowan Mansion

[As part of the remit to make the Untold LA iPad Book available to as many people as possible I'll be posting photos from the book in sequential order on a regular basis until it is completely online.]

Our last stop on West Adams Boulevard is the MacGowan Mansion, named after the first Commissioner of Los Angeles' Health Department, Dr. Grandville MacGowan. He had the home built by architects Hudson and Munsell in 1912 and though it looks like it's joined to it in the photo above the building to the right is actually the Briggs Residence posted about yesterday. Below you can see the Main Staircase.

The exterior of the home is covered with 'grotesques'; expressive stone faces.

In the oral history audio clips below you can hear Carol Jones, (also heard on the Guasti blog posts), describe the Grotesques and the restoration of the MacGowan.

Below: detail of the Chevron above the Grand Salon Fireplace.

The Dining Room continues the mixture of styles seen in the MacGowan. In the gallery below you can see Art Nouveau encroaching on Tudor Revival.

We swerve back to Craftsman for the intimate Library seen below.

We end today with two more closeups of the MacGowan, showcasing its beautiful attention to detail.

1905 Transitional Craftsman

[As part of the remit to make the Untold LA iPad Book available to as many people as possible I'll be posting photos from the book in sequential order on a regular basis until it is completely online.]

Right next door to Dan Hakes' is this home built around 1905 which was moved to Western Heights from another West Adams neighborhood in the 1920's. As in Dan's case this home was featured in the film Neighbors, though as Seth Rogen's home not as a Frat, (you can see a frame grab from the film trailer below which shows this home as well as Dan's).