What happened on Dunsmuir

These appear to be four rather ordinary West Adams district homes from the late 1920s and early ’30s and in many ways they are.

Dunsmuir_2435

Photographs by Larry Harnisch Los Angeles Times

This is 2435 S. Dunsmuir Ave.

Dunsmuir_2308

This is 2308 S. Dunsmuir Ave.

 

Dunsmuir_2135

This is 2135 S. Dunsmuir Ave.

Dunsmuir_2130

And this is 2130 S. Dunsmuir Ave.

But on March 16, 1952, 2130 S. Dunsmuir looked like this:

Dunsmuir_2130_1952

About three months before the explosion, William Bailey, a science teacher at Carver
Junior High School, had moved into the house with his wife, Willa, and
their son, William Jr. The family was black. The neighborhood was
white.

Whoever hit the house also bombed the one across the street, which was
being rented by Ralph Martinez and John W. Potts. Presumably they were
black, although The Times doesn’t say so.

On July 25, 1951, 2435 S. Dunsmuir was bombed several days after after it
was sold to Dr. M.D. Matsumoto, a Japanese American physician.

An explosion a few hours earlier ripped  2308 S. Dunsmuir, which was
owned by Sallie H. Mazoway, a real estate agent. "Mrs. Mazoway told
police she had no part in the sale of the Matsumoto house nor had she
sold property to persons not Caucasians," The Times said. "She did say
that she had received anonymous telephone calls on the subject of such
sales."

Although police said the explosion at 2308 S. Dunsmuir was like the others, fire officials said it might have been caused by gas that accumulated beneath the house.

There’s one other thing these homes have in common: The bombings were
never solved, despite rewards offered by the NAACP and ACLU soliciting
information.

Email me

About lmharnisch

I am retired from the Los Angeles Times
This entry was posted in Countdown to Watts, LAPD and tagged , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

Leave a Reply. Note: Your IP is logged with your comment so a fake name and email address are useless.

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s