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Tuesday, April 28, 2009

The Alvarado Neighbors: 410 A

Claudia McPherson Reddick

Directly across from William D. Taylor was unit 410 B. Claudia Frances McPherson Reddick lived there. Claudia was born on 18 Nov 1882 in Gold Hill, Nevada to Daniel and Katherine Murphy McPherson. Daniel died when Claudia was 11, making Katherine twice widowed. Claudia grew up with a brother, Archie McPherson, who studied as an electrician. Kate, Claudia, and Archie moved frequently and had the misfortune of being in San Francisco during the Earthquake in 1906. The family headed for Vancouver, BC where Claudia married Ferdinand Reddick and they all moved back to San Francisco by 1910. In 1915, Claudia was granted a divorce from Ferdinand from Judge Stoddard in Reno, Nevada. Claudia was of average height, fair complexion, dark hair, and blue eyes and after her divorce, moved to Los Angeles and lived on 7th Street near Figueroa. Claudia, her mother, and brother, lived in the same building at the same time as Marie Prevost and Will Mae Carson. In August of that year, Katherine McPherson died and Claudia soon after moved to 410 B Alvarado.
In 1922, Claudia made plans to marry wealthy businessman from John H. Bonnell from Ohio, who coincidently lived in the same Los Angeles apartment building owned by Anna Gillon with tenants such as Mabel Normand at 3089 W. Seventh St. Claudia’s plot, according to Bonnell, was to trap John Bonnell into marriage using subterfuge. Claudia, knowing about Bonnell’s planned trip to Chicago, she insisted on accompanying him and he agreed due to his poor health. Bonnell thought it strange while on the trip, Claudia received at telegram from a man in Los Angeles demanding the return of certain jewelry she had in her possession, threatening her arrest. She left the train there at Dodge City, Kansas and by way of Oklahoma, met up with Bonnell in Chicago. While there, Claudia’s plan was to trap him inside a hotel room and blackmail him into marrying her by sending two police officers to enter the room. Bonnell quickly agreed to marriage in order to avoid unwanted publicity. The wedding occurred on 16 August 1922 and John and Claudia lived together until 3 Oct 1923.

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