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Shamus Town: The Los Angeles of Raymond Chandler

January 8, 2010

Loren latker’s excellent Shamus Town website is an increasingly important repository of all things Raymond Chandler. The site now includes hundreds of photographs of LA in Chandler’s time and in the present as well as many scanned documents relating to Chandler himself. For anyone researching Chandler, having access to his birth certificate and school records via the Raymond Chandler Timeline is invaluable. Latker also has podcast tours of Chandler’s LA. The site has recently been updated and there are lots of good things on the way. Loren writes:

The new timeline is up! It now starts in 1858 with the birth of Morris, or Maurice, B Chandler. I’ve added many popup images for Ray’s birth certificate, his school records, a Laramie new item about an M Chandler attending a party in 1886, obits about his uncle Fitt’s brother and his aunt Francis Grace. I also found the document from 1927 where Ray started the process to regain his U.S. Citizenship. From that we learn that after WWI he returned to Canada, made is way to Victoria BC, boarded the Governor bound
for San Francisco and arrived in March of 1919. He and [Florence, his mother] were living at the West 12th Street address then.

In the True Crime section I added two images. I already had an image of rich Ned dead on the floor of Greystone taken from Leslie White’s wonderful “Me, Detective.” However, I won an auction (don’t ask how much!) for two 1929 8×10 crime scene photos. One is the same rich Ned dead that White had in his
book, but the other is of poor Hugh Plunket dead on the floor as well. 8x10s scanned at 1200 DPI make wonderfully large digital images! The photo of Plunket probably hasn’t been seen since 1929! I made them into very large popup images – they look great!

Coming up I want to record the narration of the two rides I have the video done for and add them as Podcasts. I want to finish the section I started about Dorothy Fisher nee Gruber, Chandler’s secretary and add the good parts of her audio interview we did, along with the transcript, and pictures of letters Ray sent her.

Link to Shamus Town. More on Chandler’s early life here.

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