4 L.A. Family Scandals Before the Kardashians
Long before reality TV, there was always drama
Ah, it’s hard to remember life before the Kardashians (how ever did we spend our free time?). Well, long before we were keeping up with all the antics of our favorite family, Los Angeles wasn’t exactly short on prominent families with outrageous behavior. Here, four L.A. scandals that would have totally broken the Internet…had there been one.
It’s a classic Los Angeles date--a hike through Griffith Park. Ironically, the self-made mining expert named Griffith J. Griffith who donated this 4,310-acre tract became notorious for shooting his wife in 1903--she survived but lost her right eye. He served two years in prison and the Griffiths divorced--but we Angelenos got to keep the park.
Like the winding, hilltop Mulholland Drive? You’ll love the juicy scandal that goes with it. William Mulholland was Los Angeles’s first chief of the Water & Power Department and built the aqueduct that brought water to make our barren patch of desert liveable. Yay, he’s our hero! Not so fast. Mulholland was also the inspiration for the bad guy in Chinatown, who basically caused the economic ruin of farmers who'd depended on that water source. Hope we didn’t ruin your Mulholland Drive view.
The Getty Museum, the Getty Villa--they carry the name of UCLA-educated J. Paul Getty, one of the world’s first billionaires. He was also a famous miser. Perhaps that’s why he initially refused to pay kidnappers in the 1970s when his 16-year-old grandson was abducted. After the captive’s ear was cut off, Getty finally paid.
Doheny Drive, Doheny Mansion, Doheny State Beach: California is lousy with the legacy of pioneering oil man Edward Doheny. (Daniel Day-Lewis even won an Oscar for playing a loosely fictionalized version of him in 2007’s There Will Be Blood.) Sadly, both Doheny and his son Ned were charged with bribing a federal official and Ned perished before his time in Greystone Mansion.