Well, no, not exactly.
In the blog Alfred Solano, patron of Solano Canyon that was posted on April 26th, there was a photoragph of Stimson House, the 30-room mansion at 2421 Figueroa Street that Alfred and Ella Solano purchased in 1904 from the estate of the builder and original owner of the house, Thomas Douglas Stimson. This is the contemporary image that was used in the blog:
Now, I had never seen the AMC drama series Mad Men; so, in an effort to keep up with the times, I have been watching the series. In Season 5, Episode 3, which is entitled "Tea Leaves", something caught my eye so powerfully that it brought me to full-stop. I hit the PAUSE button and scrolled back. In this scene, Henry Francis and his wife, Betty, the former Mrs. Don Draper, and Betty's three children are sitting on the front lawn of their home. Here is the screen capture of that moment, which occurs at 33:49 of the episode:
The family is sitting on the lawn in front of The Castle! OK, so the production company paid the current owners of the mansion, the Sisters of St. Joseph of Corondolet, to film the outside of the mansion; that sort of thing happens all the time in Los Angeles, right?
Although I have visited The Castle several times, I have not seen the interior in person. Chapter 5 in the book, Los Angeles's [sic] Chester Place, entitled "The Castle", describes the mansion in some detail and has several photographs of its interior, including this one on page 102:
Nice, I thought, I'd love to see the inside of the house myself. A few minutes later into the same episode of Mad Men, at 37:06, there was this scene of Henry and Betty:
This scene was clearly filmed inside the mansion. So the AMC production company of Mad Men not only got to use the grounds of the mansion as background, they got to film inside, too! (This is the front entry hall; the main parlor is to the left.)
And all this for a television drama that is supposed to take place in New York!
I realize this has nothing to do with Solano Canyon directly, but I thought since I had already posted a photo of the house on the blog about Alfred Solano, I would go ahead and share this bit of television trivia with you, too.
About the Author
Lawrence Bouett is a retired research scientist and registered professional engineer who now conducts historical and genealogical research full-time. A ninth-generation Californian, his primary historical research interests are Los Angeles in general and the Stone Quarry Hills in particular. His ancestors arrived in California with Portolá in 1769 and came to Los Angeles from Mission San Gabriel with the pobladores on September 4, 1781.
Lawrence Bouett may be contacted directly here.