Friday, February 03, 2012

Vintage Photo Friday - Venice Beach

Temi Davis as a young woman

My great grandmother, Temi Davis, lived on Brooks Avenue in Venice Beach. I'm named after Temi. I guess my Mom thought that Temi was close to Emmy, which started with an "E" for Ellen. I don't know?! I must ask her this question again. I would have loved to have Temi or Tammy as my first name. Really though, since my last name is Bloom, I've often thought that a flower name would have been appropriate. Violet Bloom. Daisy Bloom. These were not popular names in the 1950's. I'm stuck with Ellen.
My Mother tells great stories of spending her summers with her sisters at Venice Beach.

Venice Pier, 1937
Photo Courtesy of L.A. Public Library Photo Archives

They would swim at the salt water Plunge on the Ocean Park Pier, play games on the Venice Pier and go to dances at the Aragon Ballroom on the Lick Pier. Mom tells stories of being a real dare-devil and jumping off the highest diving board into the Plunge! There are a number of books about the history of Venice Beach. All of the stories make it sound like a paradise. I spent LOTS of time at the beach when I was a kid too. My experiences at the Ocean Park and Santa Monica Piers didn't come close to the times that Mom spent there.
A few years ago, Larry and I attended a screening of "Night Tide" (1961). It was a story that took place in and around Venice and Santa Monica beach, starring Dennis Hopper. It was so cool to see the beach during the Beatnik years of the late 1950's, early 1960's. It was quite run down by then. Hopper was at the screening and gave us many insights into the area where he lived.
The beach area has changed so much since the glory days of the 20's and 30's. Every 10 years or so, real estate developers say that increased development will make it a paradise once again. If they would just leave the beach alone, let the buildings crumble and NOT develop it, it would be heaven. Sigh.Link

The Salt Water Plunge, Ocean Park

Have a wonderful weekend everyone.

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At 4:21 PM PST, Blogger Laurie Ann said...

I think you'd have made a lovely Daisy. Also, you and my sister would get along great. She wanted to marry a man whose last name was Flowers and name her daughter Bouquet Olivia, so she'd be Bouquet O. Flowers.

I wish Venice still looked like that.

At 11:14 PM PST, Blogger aracne said...

Oh, Venice: it is where I stay when I come to LA, I love walking along the beach, in the little streets, the canals! Thank you for this post, I wish I could be there this morning.


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