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Tom Gregory

Radio Clips

Tom Gregory's Hollywood Vault radio clips, as featured on Leeza Gibbons' national radio program Hollywood Confidential!

William Mulholand

William Mulholand

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Below is a transcript of the review on the audio file playable above.

Hollywood needs movie stars. Movie stars need swimming pools, and swimming pools need water. Heck no self-respecting health spa could survive with just a dry sauna. In Hollywood, there’d be no ornamental feng shui fish gardens, and nothing to forsake in favor of your Evian.

“There it is, take it”, were the famous words spoken by William Mulholland on November 5, 1913 when water he diverted from the Owens River 233 miles away finally reached a San Fernando Valley dam.

Los Angeles would never be the same — and the Owens Valley would never be the same again!! This was the real life story fictionalized in 1974’s “Chinatown.” Bribes, blood and bullets all helped send Fishies swimming through the series of Pipes, tunnels, and waterfalls that make up the Los Angeles aqueduct.

It wasn’t easy sailing either. An Owens Valley uprising against Los Angeles was so challenging to quell it was dubbed a war. Many considered the rabble-rousers to be acting out on self-defense, and the governor himself did nothing but wash his hands of the whole feud. Los Angeles negotiated, and Hollywood’s been wet behind the ears ever since.

Mulholland’s challenging career was washed up in 1928 when a dam he had just – I kid you not - inspected himself broke killing 450 people. Mulholland took the blame. At the inquest he sobbed, “I envy the dead.” Today he’s remembered more for the dangerous hilltop drive - that has more curves than Betty Grable - than he is for magic that comes out of Hollywood’s faucet.

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