Installation of the 'Hollywood' sign


The sign was erected in 1923 and originally read "HOLLYWOODLAND" to promote the name of a new housing development in the hills above the Hollywood district of Los Angeles. Real estate developers Woodruff and Shoults called their development "Hollywoodland" and advertised it as a "superb environment without excessive cost on the Hollywood side of the hills." They contracted the Crescent Sign Company to erect thirteen south-facing letters on the hillside. Crescent owner Thomas Fisk Goff designed the wooden sign in 30 ft wide and 50 ft high white block letters. Studded with around 4,000 light bulbs, the completed sign alternated between flashing in successive segments "HOLLY," "WOOD," and "LAND" and as a whole. Below the sign was a searchlight to attract more attention. The poles that supported the sign were hauled to the site by mules. The project cost $21,000, equivalent to $320,000 in 2020. The sign was officially dedicated in 1923, intended to last only a year and a half. The rise of American cinema in Los Angeles during the Golden Age of Hollywood gave it widespread visibility, causing it to be left beyond that, for over a quarter century still spelling "Hollywoodland".

Installed, 1923

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