Lafayette and Wellington Square
Welcome to Laffayette Square:
Lafayette Square is a small, semi-gated neighborhood in Los Angeles, California named after George Lafayette Crenshaw. It sits just off of Crenshaw Boulevard in the Mid-City area. It was designated by the city as a Los Angeles Historic Preservation Overlay Zone in 2000 for its significant residential architecture and history.
Lafayette Square consists of eight blocks, centered around St. Charles Place, and situated between Venice Boulevard and Washington Boulevard. There are 236 homes in the neighborhood. It is immediately south of Victoria Park and immediately north of Wellington Square.
According to the Los Angeles Conservancy, "Lafayette Square was the last and greatest of banker George L. Crenshaw's ten residential developments in the City of Los Angeles." The neighborhood was founded in 1913; the gates surrounding the district are a relatively recent addition, coming only in 1989.
The neighborhood was always meant to be for higher-income families and now-historic houses regularly have 5,000 to 6,000 square feet (600 m2) floor plans, although the average home size is 3,600 square feet (330 m2). Architectural styles include Neo-Federalist, Craftsman, Italianate and Spanish Revival, as well as several notable examples of early Modern. According to a Los Angeles Times real-estate section article on the district, "Most of the properties have period details: Juliet balconies, mahogany staircases and libraries, sitting rooms, stained glass windows, triple crown molding, soaring ceilings—even four-car garages."
Famous residents of Lafayette Square have included George Pepperdine (founder of Pepperdine University), actors W.C. Fields and Fatty Arbuckle, industrialist and art collector Norton Simon, boxer Joe Louis, Syd Tha Kyd and Taco Bennet of Odd Future, architect Paul R. Williams (who designed his own home in the neighborhood), and members of the Crenshaw family.
Wellington Square is a neighborhood in Mid City Los Angeles, California. The neighborhood is conveniently located in the heart of L.A., at the western edge of the West Adams Historic District. The collection of 209 mostly historic homes, predominantly dating to the 1920s, have been lovingly preserved over the years by its residents. Today, Wellington Square is a vibrant, active, and beautiful neighborhood - a little slice of the past, smack dab in the center of the City of Angels.
Wellington Square was subdivided in 1912 by George L. Crenshaw. Wellington Square was developed by prominent real estate developer M.J. Nolan. M.J. Nolan was a native of Syracuse NY and settled in LA in 1886. In 1914, M.J. started to develop 90 acres of land between Adams and the new La Fayette Square. He passed in 1918 and the W.I. Hollingsworth Co. continued lot sales. The boom years of the 1920s saw the most development of the neighborhood. The homes in the neighborhood are an architectural mixture from Craftsman and Revival styles of the 1920s and 1930s.
In 1955, the Santa Monica Freeway was started. The first segment opened in 1961 and the freeway was completed in 1964. It was named by the State Highway Commission on August 14, 1957. Many homes in Wellington Square were taken by Caltrans to build the freeway. In the current Wellington square, the 10 freeway is the south border with West Blvd on the West, Crenshaw on the East, and Washington Blvd on the North.
Always prominent in the African American community, the neighborhood has been home to many famous residents including, Dorothy Dandridge, Juanita Moore, Dorothy Donegan, Nick Stewart, Evelyn Freeman, and Lucius Allen.
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