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From the Archives: Groundbreaking for Hollywood Walk of Fame

From the Archives: Groundbreaking for Hollywood Walk of Fame
Feb. 8, 1960: Celebrities break ground for the new star-studded sidewalks in Hollywood. (Los Angeles Times)

After several years of delays, the Hollywood Walk of Fame began construction in 1960. Pictured above are, from left, County Supervisor Ernest Debs; E.M. Stuart, originator of the idea; actresses Gigi Perreau and Linda Darnell; Harry M. Sugarman, president of Hollywood Improvement Assn.; and veteran actors Francis X. Bushman and Charles Coburn.

A story in the Feb. 9, 1960, Los Angeles Times reported:

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A dream that Hollywood boosters have cherished for seven years finally began coming true yesterday when ground was broken for the "Walk of Fame" along Hollywood Blvd.

Glamorizing of the boulevard will be done with 15,000 ft. of charcoal-colored terrazzo sidewalks inset every 10 ft. with coral stars containing names of the entertainment world's most famous personalities. The street will be illuminated with a brilliant modern lighting system.

This "Walk of Fame" will extend along Hollywood Blvd. from Gower St. to Sycamore Ave. Vine St. will be similarly glamorized from Sunset Blvd. to Yucca St.

The whole job, which is being sponsored by the Hollywood Property Owners Assn. and the Hollywood Improvement Assn., will cost $1,151,000 and take 10 months to complete. …

The first official star was for director Stanley Kramer on March 26, 1960.

Many Hollywood fans mistakenly believe actress Joanne Woodward had the first star. In September 1958, Woodward posed for photographers at one of eight prototype stars on display to promote the then-proposed Hollywood Walk of Fame.

For more about the Hollywood Walk of Fame, check out this Los Angeles Times page About Hollywood Star Walk.

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