Here is a little “FACT VERSUS FICTION” about the case (courtesy http://blackdahlia.i….php?storyid=21)
Elizabeth Short was a prostitute, posed nude, and performed in pornographic films. Fact or fiction?
Harry Hansen, the original detective in charge of the case, stated in a television interview that Elizabeth Short was not a prostitute. The Los Angeles District Attorney files state that Elizabeth Short was not a prostitute: “She was confused with a Los Angeles prostitute who had the same name.” No nude photos of Elizabeth Short ever surfaced. No pornographic films with her in them have ever surfaced. As John Babcock, prize-winning journalist with KABC in Los Angeles stated: ‘That is because none ever existed. If they did someone would have made a bundle off them.”
Elizabeth Short was a lesbian. Fact or fiction?
Where did that one come from? I never heard of that one before. The District Attorney’s files make it clear that Elizabeth Short was not a lesbian. Ann Toth, Short’s roommate at Mark Hansen’s told investigators: ” No, she always made the statement, very queer people in this town, queer people, referring to both men and women I guess. That is the only thing referring to queers that she ever mentioned, but I doubt it very much. Why did she go through the trouble of wearing false and all that to attract a queer lesbian, because either they go for you or they don’t go for you, they don’t care if you haven’t any shape. As far as that goes, in my estimation, I think she was definitely out to attract men. I can’t see any way of her wanting to attract a woman, because I would definitely notice it. I have been around enough to notice it in this town — I would notice it.”
Elizabeth Short knew Marilyn Monroe and may have had a lesbian affair with her. Okay now. We know that MM was in the movie and modelling business herself around the same time as Elizabeth Short. Even their ages were about the same. This is probably where this whole rumour got started. And it might even be conceptually plausible that MM and Short briefly met in a club somewhere. If that’s so that is the extent of their contact, I’m sure. For one thing there is no evidence proving either woman was a lesbian (I highly doubt that one too).
Elizabeth Short was named the Black Dahlia by friends. Fact or fiction?
Chuck Cheatham, reporter with the Long Beach Independent, claimed that he and Bevo Means, reporter with the Los Angeles Herald-Express, were told of the nickname by Ed Boynton, a Long Beach policeman. Since the Herald-Express had an evening edition, that newspaper reported the moniker first on January 19, 1947, while the Independent printed the name in the next morning edition. However, the Los Angeles District Attorney (DA) files state the name was made up by the reporters. I agree with the LADA. The press is keen on inventing creepy little monikers in murder cases. Usually they are reserved for the killers. In this case, it was for the victim.
The LA Examiner printed this blurb although the validity of it is questionable:
Long Beach, California, 1947 A Long Beach druggist and his son filled a gap in time in the Short girl’s life. This was the period July 22 to August 3 last year. “She lived at the Washington hotel, now called the Atwater, at 53 Linden Avenue,” said Arnold Landers Sr., the pharmacy owner. “She’d come into our drug store frequently. She’d usually wear a two-piece beach costume which left her midrift bare. Or she’d wear the black lacy things. “Her hair was jet black and she liked to wear it high. She was popular with the men who came in here and they got to calling her ‘The Black Dahlia.’” – The Los Angeles Examiner
Elizabeth Short always dressed in black. Fact or fiction?
As the many photos will show, Elizabeth Short wore a variety of clothing in light shades. Her favorite colors were pink and light blue. At times she wore what was known in the 1940s as basic black—an outfit that could appear different by the accessories worn. Perhaps when she was clubbing or dating she wore black more often. A lot of women do.
Elizabeth Short was seen with various people during the “missing days” of January 9, 1947 to January 14, 1947.
According to the DA’s summary report: “In the investigation there were many anonymous phone calls and letters from people who stated they had seen the girl in many places at the same time. Investigation showed that these people could have seen someone who did look like Elizabeth Short. On five occasions individuals were contacted by members of this department who do resemble this girl a great deal. A girl who was seen in the Santa Monica area was identified as Jean Cyr and she was contacted. A married woman who lived in the vicinity of Torrence was identified and contacted. She cleared up three different cases of mistaken identification. This lady was contacted and a report is in the file. No one reported seen from January 9, at approximately 10:00 PM until the body was found by Mrs. Bersinger at 10:30 AM, January 15, has been definitely identified as Elizabeth Short.”
There are probably more rumours about the unfortunate Ms. Short floating around somewhere. In a sordid case such as this one, rumours never stop and the victim never sleeps.