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Crowds gather at the corner of Broadway and First Street after the Oct. 1, 1910, bombing of the Los Angeles Times building. The 1 a.m. attack killed 21 employees and and injured about 100.

Fire rages through The Times Building on Oct. 1, 1910, as seen from Broadway just south of First Street.

PHOTOGRAPH BY: Courtesy of University of Southern California, on behalf of the USC Special Collections

The second home of the Los Angeles Times in 1910 before it was bombed.

PHOTOGRAPH BY: Los Angeles Times

Newspaper dealers in front of the second Los Angeles Times building at Broadway and First Street. Date unknown, but prior to 1910. This building was bombed by union activists Oct. 1, 1910.

PHOTOGRAPH BY: Los Angeles Times

Los Angeles Times building 3 in foreground, 4 in background, with a view down Broadway.

PHOTOGRAPH BY: Los Angeles Times

The Los Angeles Times in fall 2006 (as seen from the CalTrans Building) in downtown Los Angeles.

PHOTOGRAPH BY: Gary Friedman / Los Angeles Times

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Times building bombed [Updated]

Oct. 1, 1910: Crowds gather at the corner of Broadway and First Street after the bombing of the Los Angeles Times building. The 1 a.m. attack killed 20 employees and and injured about 100.

[Corrected at 6:03 p.m.: An earlier version of this post said the bombing killed 21 employees.]

The attack didn’t stop the Oct. 1, 1910, issue of the Times; it was printed at the Los Angeles Herald.

The city of Los Angeles hired private detective William J. Burns to catch the bombers. His work led to the arrest of two brothers, John J. and James B. McNamara — members of the International Assn. of Bridge and Structural Iron Workers union.

Clarence Darrow defended the McNamaras only to lose the case when the brothers changed their pleas in open court to guilty. After the trial, Darrow was twice tried on charges of jury tampering. The first trial ended in acquittal, the second in a hung jury.

Darrow went on to defend John T. Scopes in the 1925 Scopes Trial.

In 1921, William J. Burns became head of the Bureau of Investigation — later the Federal Bureau of Investigation. He was forced to resign in 1924 with the deputy head, J. Edgar Hoover, taking over.

Los Angeles Times writer Larry Harnisch is gathering and posting extensive material on the Times building bombing on The Daily Mirror blog.

1 Comment

  1. March 4, 2011, 11:05 am

    […] History: Times building bombed in 1910 […]

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