A Victorian-era Suburb

The residents of Angelino Heights and Echo Park share the same business district, parks, schools and historic pride. But Angelino Heights, located to the east of Echo Park Lake and north of the 101 Freeway, remains a unique and remarkably well preserved section of Victorian-era Los Angeles.

While known primarily for its Victorian landmarks, Angelino Heights, one of the first suburbs of Los Angeles, has an impressive array of architectural styles, among them: Queen Anne and Eastlake Victorian, Mission Revival, Craftsman/California bungalow, Brownstone, and Streamline Moderne.

More than 50 Victorian residences and carriage houses dominate the heart of the neighborhood, which has been referred to by some residents as “the hill.” The highest concentration and best collection of Queen Anne-Eastlake Victorians in the city maybe found on Carroll Avenue. More than a dozen of these homes have been designated Los Angeles cultural historic monuments and the 1300 block is listed in the National Register of Historic Places.

Born During the Boom

Angelino Heights was created at the height of the Southern California land boom of the mid 1880s. The completion of transcontinental railroads and a rail fares as low as $1 for a trip from the Missouri River to the West Coast helped trigger a land and population boom in the region. A flood of hysterical buyers and rampant speculation pushed some land prices up as high as 500% in one year.

It was a the height of this land boom in 1886 that William W. Stilson and Everett E. Hall filed for the subdivision of the “Angeleňo Heights” tract in what was then city’s lightly populated western fringe. The elevation of the hill offered beautiful vistas and a quiet suburban atmosphere to the upper middle class Angelenos who moved to the subdivision.

A nearby cable car line, which ran down Temple Street, then a main east-west artery to the heart of downtown 1-1/2 miles away, served residents. One could hop a car and be downtown a few minutes later or be whisked quickly home from the noise and dust of the city to a game of tennis at one of the three courts located on the hill.