Thursday, November 12, 2009


After the last rain the clover is beginning to sprout again and the elves and mushrooms are about. When I turn around and look towards the mountains I see Echo Mountain and Mount Lowe, actually visible from my bedroom and living room windows! This shot epitomizes my interests: historic architecture, Colonial Revival Moderne style, 1950's sports cars, czecho-germanic-anglophile culture, travel, trees and blue sky thinking.
Normandie Cottage is a lot of work to keep running, being 1924 vintage and my having so little time at the moment to give it attention. The 1958 Austin Healey 100-6 is also a lot of work to keep running, as well. As a matter of fact, trying to keep myself running, vintage 1950, is a lot of work.
Some of us still believe and hope we might bring back this part of town to what it was almost a hundred years ago. A small group of enthusiasts actually believe we may see the reconstruction of the Mount Lowe Incline Railway and the reinstallation of trolleys up and down Lake Avenue, taking tourists to a rebuilt Mount Lowe Alpine Tavern hotel at Crystal Springs, all this happening within the next 20 years or so.
First we must have a grand reopening of the restored Washington Theatre and the establishment of a Lake Washington Village Arts District. All good things take time. Let me know if you want to get involved to bring back the economic vitality of the old tourist days. Up Lake Avenue can be a vacation destination for all once again, as it once was.


  1. Right now, Thal, my involvement will have to remain restricted to being the daily photo blogger and Pasadena enthusiast that I already am. (I don't think you'd be surprised to know it takes some time!) But keep me apprised and know I support you.

  2. Great historical stuff here as usual. Too bad you can't make this a kind of, Pasadena Daily History blog!

  3. I'm not sure if that's what I'd want. Living just a few blocks south of the Cobb Estate, the idea of trams and railways competing for space and disturbing the wildlife, isn't my idea of paradise.

    I most definitely like running into ruins of days gone by on the trail. I think the ruins are beautiful.

  4. Petrea, I appreciate your moral support
    Cafe Pasadena, I wish I had the time to do more. I'll try. There is so much information out there which could be made more public. It's a shame information is not more accessible in this day and age, but it is certainly more accessible than it was in the past.
    Altadenahiker, I can understand your trepidation. However, we badly need the economic boost in this part of town and only tourists could ever bring the needed economic boost if we rule out auto dealerships, big box retail, factories and every other type of urban blight, which we do of course. We can't think of any other way to bring prosperity to all points north of Pasadena Civic Center, and to Pasadena and Altadena overall. The tourist sites here in the mountains coexisted with nature and in many ways enhanced it, and made it available to a much broader cross section of the population. Tourism is the greenest industry possible, if done properly, and we will insist it is done in an environmentally friendly way for nature's sake. Come to the presentation on this Monday, Nov. 23,
    The Altadena Community Center, 730 E. Altadena Dr., is the site of a presentation on the Pacific Electric Railroad, 7:30 PM. to see some amazing photos and artifacts. Hope to see you all there!

  5. Thought you might like this tribute:


  6. Thanks Robert! A great video and I hope others will take a look, too! What a change of scenery, weather and time of day from Oak Knoll to the Cobb Estate, just on Lake Avenue.