I took this picture while at Pt. Fermin last Monday, and went looking for similar shots from the Good Olde Days. Much to my surprise, I found some!
The old picture is from the LA Library photo collection, of course, and is not dated. This shot of a bluff at Point Fermin seems to be pretty close to the vista below. The "then" shot is of the Los Angeles Camera Club scrambling around. I found references to these folks in several 1888 Los Angeles Times "In Society" columns.
The Los Angeles Camera Club organized in March of that year, with Mr. H. T. Bellsmith of the Eastman Dry Plate Company as president. That changed by April, when the Times listed all officers and members--including a few women!
Looking at their few announcements through the early 1900s, of outings to Hollenbeck Park, Mission San Fernando Re, Santa Monica-by-the-sea, and other spots, it's probably due to them that the library has such wonderful old photos.
Too bad that I can't see anything in this old photo to really date it.
In 1929, part of the Pt. Fermin area broke off and slowly slid into the sea. All but two houses on the endangered land--which moved up to eleven inches a day for months--were successfully moved. Assuming this is a pre-1929 picture, this bluff may not exist anymore. It may be part of the landscape that crumbled.