Beauty is often a reason for a mystery to remain with us, such as small time actress Elizabeth Short - known as the Black Dahlia for her liking of black clothes - found mutilated at the age of 22 in Los Angeles on 15 January 1917.
Soon afterwards, a parcel was sent to the police containing her belongings and an address book with a page torn out. Over the following years, some 50 people confessed to her murder, drawing themselves into a story of beauty and - perhaps the real mystery here - the tragedy of Elizabeth’s life.
A juvenile delinquent, she bedded servicemen to escape her pathetic life. Eventually getting engaged to a soldier, he was killed in World War Two, and she turned to drink.
Getting the odd movie bit-part, she slowly moved towards prostitution. Hence, her horrific death became symbolic of a life which failed to live the American Dream.
(c) Anthony North, Feb 2007