Palos Verdes Estates, California One Place Study

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Palos Verdes Estates, California One Place Study

This profile is part of the Palos Verdes Estates, California One Place Study.
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Palos Verdes Estates


Palos Verdes Estates (aka P.V.E) is one of four incorporated cities in the coastal suburb of Los Angeles County known as the Palos Verdes Pennisula (aka 'The Hill'). P.V.E. sits in the Northwest corner of 'The Hill' and has an elevation of 210 feet above sea level which rises to 284 feet above sea level at it highest point, and covers an area of 4.77 Square Miles. P.V.E is also considered part of the Los Angeles Basin, surrounded by mountain ranges.

P.V.E is considered an affluent community by today's standard as is the other three cities on the hill and the South Bay communities directly to the north along the beaches of Santa Monica Bay.


Continent: North America
Country: United States
State/Province: California
County: Los Angeles
GPS Coordinates: 33.786944, -118.396667


The Palos Verdes Penninsula used to be an island, one of the Southern Channel Islands as we know them today, and part of the Peninsular Ranges Geomorphic Province.

The Los Angeles basin was underwater for much of its history until tectonic uplift to connect Palos Verdes island with the mainland. The Palos Verdes Pennisula and the entire Los Angeles coastal plain is a tombolo forming at the same time as this area was being lifted up out of the water.

Uplifting in this area was occurring in association with the Palos Verdes Fault. The compressed forces in the landscape under Palos Verdes created an anticline which is a bunched up pile of originally horizontal marine and alluvial beds. The axis of this anticline runs parallel to the Palos Verdes fault line.

Palos Verdes began this uplift and connection with the mainland during the Pleistocene Era (about 2.6 million years ago) which is the era of repeated ice ages and ocean level drops over the last couple of million years through the combination of renewed uplift and filling in of the shallow sea level.

The uplift does not occur all at the same time and is done intermittently, and the unevenness has been accentuated or offset by the ice age related changes in sea level. This all results in horizontal lines or terraces as seen on the cliffs of Palos Verdes from the ocean side.


Population in 1930: 499 residents

Population in 1945: 1100 residents

Population in 2021: 13,250 residents

Population by race per U.S. Census 2013-2017:

White: 10,584, African American: 114, American Indian and Alaska Native: 36, Asian: 3283, Hawaiian and other Pacific Islanders: 35, Hispanic: 1229



Note: To study the city of Palos Verdes Estates, it's important to understand the history of 'The Hill' in general and how this entire area came into being. There is a significant amount of historical information attached to this area that it's a story that needs to be told for readers of this One Place Study. From the Indians, early explorer's, and settler's up through modern times, many people have made a great impact on 'The Hill' and the area in general.

18th and 19th Century

In 1765 King Charles (Carlos) III (1716-1788) of Spain ordered the exploration of the West coast of (now) California by both land and sea. By 1769, multiple ships loaded with mostly military men and supplies arrived in (now) San Diego Bay. It's from here that these explorations began. One of these land excursions was under the leadership of Don Gaspar de Portola. They explored up the coast and then inland ending up at (now San Francisco). Among this group was Lt. Pedro Fages and a young solider named Juan Jose Dominguez. Upon arriving back at the starting point down South, the Ruler of the 'Kingdom of New Spain', Jose de Galvez ordered them back up North again. This time traveling with Father Junipero Serra they established 21 missions along the way at one travel day intervals from San Diego up to San Francisco Solano. One such Mission was 'Mission San Gabriel' was built in 1771. The Indians that were in this area helped build the mission and were named the 'Gabrielanos' by the Spanish. This mission is California Registered Landmark Number 158.

In 1781 Governor Felipe de Neve was recruiting volunteers from Los Alamos in Senora Mexico to help settle the area around (now) Los Angeles. Among this group was a man named Francisco Xavier Sepulveda and his family. After a brief stop at the San Gabriel Mission they settled in an area down by the (now) Los Angeles River. They built a pueblo and its name was to be 'Pueblo de Los Angeles' (National Register of Historic Places Number 72000231).

Also in 1781 Juan Jose Dominguez retired from the military and remembering all the land he had seen during his explorations, he decided to find a nice place where he could graze his cattle in piece and quite. He ended up in the low lands surrounding a great hill to the west (now) Palos Verdes Pennisula. Juan Jose asked his old friend Pedro Fages who was now Governor of 'Alta California' for land to graze his heard of cattle on. Fages granted Juan Jose a provisional land grant of 75,000 acres to be called 'Rancho San Pedro'. Provisional grants were like a usage permit, not an ownership of property. This entire area comprised of land from (now) West Long Beach up to (now) Redondo Beach, and inland to (now) Compton and Gardena, and of course 'The Hill'. Juan Jose built a small adobe for himself in the lowlands area (now) Dominquez Hills (California Registered Landmark Number 152) and grazed his cattle for many years all over his acreage.

By 1801 Juan Jose Dominguez was going blind and decided to abandon all his property and go down to (now) San Juan Capistrano to live with his nephew Cristobal Dominguez. Juan Jose died in 1809 and left half his granted property to Cristobal and half to his ranch foreman Mateo Rubio. Ranch Manager Manuel Gutierrez was named executor of Juan Jose's estate and felt he was entitled to the land as well. He paid off debts owed, assumed control and acted like it was all his. Around 1810 Gueterrez allowed Jose Delores Sepulveda (Grandson of Francisco Xavier Sepulveda) 16,000 acres ('The Hill') to graze cattle on. This was to be called Rancho de los Palos Verdes (this was for grazing, not ownership). This act of 'kindness' would set the field for many legal battles going forward. Years later an aging Cristobal Dominguez did not have the time or the money to pursue what he thought were his ownership rights to the property once occupied by his Uncle Juan Jose Dominguez, so Cristobal's son Manuel took up that task in the years following.

Through the next 20 years the Dominguez and Sepulveda families fought back and forth as to who owned what. In 1826 Governor Echeandia officially divided up the original 75,000 acres of land and declared that the Sepulveda family was to be granted the ownership of 31,629 acres Rancho de los Palos Verdes (The Hill and adjacent Lowlands), and the Dominguez family was to be owners of Rancho San Pedro at 42,371 acres (more Inland Lowlands). This arrangement was again confirmed by Governor Figueroa in 1834. Again in 1858 this arrangement was confirmed and signed off by U.S. President Buchanan. New faces were coming into the area and they all wanted a 'piece of the pie' so to speak. For the next 25 years a multitude of people were claiming ownership through land purchases, marriages, deaths, inheritances, and squatting which resulted in 78 property lawsuits, 6 land partitions, and 12 squatter lawsuits. Among the new arrivals was Phineas Banning who went on to develop the Los Angeles Harbor, San Pedro, and Wilmington areas. Another man named LLewellyn Bixby settled in to develop more of the Long Beach area but continued to buy other property in the area as well. His son Jotham Bixby acquired 17,000 acres from the Sepulveda's, of which 16,000 acres was 'The Hill' and 1,000 was in the lowlands which is (now) Harbor City.

In 1882 ownership rights were resolved by final decree of the Superior Court. On September 25, 1882 in Case Number 2373, Rancho de los Palos Verdes was split into 17 partitions to the parties that laid claim to property with Jotham Bixby getting 17,031 acres which was eventually inherited by his son George in 1894. Around 1910 George sold the 16,000 acre ('The Hill') to Walter Fundenburg for 1.5 million dollars. He defaulted on the loan and the property was lost in foreclosure. The real estate firm of Schrader and Adams was employed by George Bixby to find a buyer for the property. They found it in one Frank A. Vanderlip of New York.

The 20th Century

Frank A. Vanderlip set up a syndicate of wealthy New York investors to raise the capitol and bought 'The Hill' sight unseen in 1913 for approximately 2 million dollars. He had to call it something so he named it 'The Palos Verdes Project'. The syndicate had great plans for all 16,000 acres starting with a grand country club to be called 'Los Palos Verdes Country Club' in the area of (now) Portuguese Point but he also hired the Olmsted Brothers from New York to work up a master plan for the full 16,000 acres. Remembering his vacations in Italy, Frank A. Vanderlip also had visions of establishing an eight acre Mediterranean enclave at Point Vicente but World War I (1914-1918) came along and dashed those plans for the foreseeable future.

In 1919 Irving Hellman secured an option to buy 'The Hill' for 3 million dollars. He wanted to drill for oil as well as develop some homes on the property. His syndicate of investors failed to secure the funding and the plan was scrapped. In 1921, real estate developer Edwin Gardner Lewis also secured an option to buy 'The Hill'. He planned to continue the vision of Frank A. Vanderlip to develop some type of Italian / Mediterranean enclave but chose the 3,200 acres which was to be the beginning of (now) Palos Verdes Estates. This year Mr Lewis employed again the Olmsted Brothers and their employee Charles Cheney to pursue a master plan under the oversight of Frederick Law Olmsted Junior. Lewis' syndicate used some high level financing methods to get investors interested. The plan failed to materialize and eventually fell apart. In 1922 Frank A. Vanderlip came back into the picture with most of his original investors to get the 'Palos Verdes Project' back on tract. Charles Cheney had already done most of the front work for Edwin Lewis in formulating a workable master plan for the 3,200 acre enclave which included landscaping, road layout, and residential lots. Despite the 'Great Depression' of 1929 the planning went on. The development of this part of the Palos Verdes Project had first priority over the remaining portion of 'The Hill'.

Around 1921 the architectural firm of Webber, Stanton, and Spaulding designed a plaza at the North entrance to 'The Hill' where prospective buyers could meet (it would later become 'Malaga Cove Plaza'). The plaza was just off the first major road to be built in the Palos Verdes Project (which was later completed in 1926 to encircle the Northwest side of 'The Hill' and called Palos Verdes Drive West). As a go-to point the plaza was basically an empty lot until a few years later when commercial development commenced on it. People came from far and wide to see what this project was all about and in 1923 an Inn was built high up the hill over looking the (now) Santa Monica Bay. A dirt road leading from the plaza up to what was to be called 'La Venta Inn', which is translated as 'The Sale'. The Inn served as a place where potential buyers could gather, as well as a real estate office to close the deal for their properties.

Besides the North entrance from Redondo Beach another road was needed in order to get to the plaza from the Northeast side as well. A small two lane road leading up to 'The Hill' at this time was Hawthorne Avenue, (which eventually became Hawthorne Blvd. and continue over 'The Hill' to the coast) but first it stopped at the base of 'The Hill'. In 1924 a new road was started turning right off of Hawthorne Avenue which was called Via Mirlo. A gate house was eventually built on Via Mirlo in 1926 as an access point to the plaza on the other side of 'The Hill'. Via Mirlo at some point became a short extension of Hawthorne Avenue, then later the name was changed to Via Valmonte. It continued winding up the hill until it met a new larger road being started in 1928 (this was eventually finished and renamed Palos Verdes Drive North in the 1930's). The larger roadway snaked around the hill on the North side until it reached the plaza. At some point another roadway was built starting in San Pedro at ninth street and would wind up into the Miraleste tract on the East side of 'The Hill' and over to the ocean on the South. These roads were known as the "Douglas Cut' (later to be called Palos Verdes Drive East and Palos Verdes Drive South respectively.

After the Great Depression of 1929, the years from 1931 to 1938 the real estate market took a dive. The State of California was threatening to take over the area for taxes due which caused the owners of the area to form their own city which was to be called Palos Verdes Estates. Frank A. Vanderlip died in 1937 and control of the Palos Verdes Corporation went to his son Frank Junior, and in 1945 to his other son Kelvin, then back to Frank Junior.

Since then Palos Verdes Estates has grown and thrived under its own power and today remains an affluent part of "The Hill' with its stately homes and red tile roofs, all of which make Palos Verdes Estates unique.


[5][6][7][8][9][10] [11]

Malaga Cove Plaza c.1921

Located on Palos Verdes Drive West at Via Chico

Designed by Webber, Stanton, and Spaulding Architectural firm it was to be the starting point for prospective investors coming into 'The Hill' for the first time. It was eventually to serve as the first of three commercial endeavors on 'The Hill', the others being Miraleste Plaza and Lunada Bay Plaza.

La Venta Inn c.1923

Located at 796 Via Del Monte

Designed by: Walter Swindell Davis, Pierpoint Davis

The Inn was the first non-commercial building built in the Palos Verdes Project. Designed in the Mediterranean style, and landscaping by the Olmsted Brothers, the Inn was built for $17,000. For whatever reason it was called 'Clubhouse 764' but later the name changed to 'La Venta' which translated to 'The Sale' in Spanish because it was being used as a real estates office. In 1924 a large party was held and hundreds of realtors came to see what this Palos Verdes Project was all about. In the 30's the Inn became a hangout for the Hollywood crowd, and in the 40's it became less used due to World war II. The tower was used as a lookout by the U.S. Coast Guard. Today the Inn is used as an upscale wedding venue.

Palos Verdes Golf Club c.1924

Located at 3301 Via Campesina

An eighteen hole course covering 213 acres, this club was designed by William Bell and George C. Thomas. Fourteen of the eighteen holes have views of the ocean. The Spanish style clubhouse was designed by Clarence E. Howard and built for $60,000 dollars (in 1924). Landscaping design was by the Olmsted Brothers. This was built as a perk for prospective buyers of property in the Palos Verdes Project.

Gardner Building c.1925 (aka Casa Primera)

Located on Palos Verdes Drive West at Via Corta in Malaga Plaza

This was the first commercial structure on 'The Hill' and was built for investor and landowner W.W. Gardner. It was built in the Spanish Colonial style for $57,000 dollars on the West end of the plaza. It housed various businesses on the ground floor and the first P.V. school on the second floor. It was dedicated in 1981 as a historical site by The Rancho de los Palos Verdes Historical Society, and is on the National Register of Historical Places.

(2021) The Gardner building is for sale at a price of 8.4 Million Dollars.

Malaga Cove School c.1926

Located at 375 Via Almar at Via Arroyo

In 1925 the Palos Verdes School District was formed. Prior to 1925 local students attended school in Redondo Beach. With the Gardner building also completed in 1925 the younger students were able to attend school there (Grades elementary through eighth grade) while high school age still had to go to Redondo Beach. This was the arrangement until Palos Verdes High School was built on the West side in 1961. As 'The Hill' developed, a second high school, Peninsula High School was opened in 1964 to serve other parts of the area to the North and East.

Via Mirlo Gatehouse c.1926

Located at 4420 Via Valmonte

As part of the Palos Verdes Project, this gate house was built as an entry point off of Hawthorne Ave. It's made of stone with 18 inch thick walls and has en exterior diameter of 15 feet. It has two floors inside. Originally it would have been on Via Mirlo which became part of Hawthorne Avenue, then later Via Valmonte.

J.J. Haggarty Mansion (aka The Neighborhood Church) c. 1928

Located at 415 Paseo Del Mar

Sitting on 1.5 oceanfront acres, the villa was designed by Armand Monaco in the Italian Renaissance style and built for $750,000 Dollars. Landscaping was by the Olmsted Brothers.

The lavish home had 15,000 square feet of space which gave plenty of living area for the 32 rooms. Mr. and Mrs Haggarty never lived in the home but preferred their other mansion at 3330 Adams Blvd (aka The Castle) in Los Angeles. The Villa was in the hands of several owners after Mr. Haggarty's business faltered during the Great Depression of 1929 and then was bought by John Thistle and later Harry Wheeler. It later became the property of The Neighborhood Church in 1950 for $70,000 Dollars. The church is available for services as well as weddings. The grounds are open to the public.

Casa Del Portal c.1929 (aka Alpha Syndicate Building and later Casa Del Portal)

Located at Via Tejon and Via Chico off of Palos Verdes Drive West in Malaga Cove Plaza

This was the second commercial building built on 'The Hill' and also designed by Webber, Stanton, and Spaulding Architectural Firm. It sits at the East end of the plaza.

Malaga Cove Library c.1930

Located at Via Campesina and Via Corta

The library was designed by Myron Hunt with the landscaping by the Olmsted Brothers. It was originally opened as the Palos Verdes Library and Art Gallery.

Neptune's Fountain c. 1930

Located on Palos Verdes Drive West in the center of Malaga Cove Plaza

The statue represent the King of the Sea and Roman God Neptune. The fountain is a 2/3 replica of the original fountain in Bologna, Italy. The fountain and statue were brought to America from an abandon villa North of Venice by Adolpho deSegni. It served well over the years but the statue eventually fell into disrepair and was replaced in 1969 by a slightly smaller version. FYI - The original was without a fig leaf, and the current one has a fig leaf. Some ladies of the 30's disapproved of the fountain because the mermaids were emitting water from their breasts. Master city planner told them "But ladies, we could not afford milk".

Palos Verdes Beach and Athletic Club c.1930

Located at 389 Via Arroyo

Built and opened as an amenity to those who bought property in this community it was first called the Palos Verdes Bathouse and Beach Club and was built for $15,000 Dollars to a design of Kirkland Cutter. Located down below the cliff at the waters edge it originally had a saltwater pool. A major fire in 1946 destroyed the upper part of the clubhouse and it was left that way for many years. In 1965 the pool was renamed in honor of the first city mayor Fred Roessler. In 1988 a group of residents got together and formed a foundation to renovate the entire facility. They raised Two Million Dollars through a membership drive. Juan Forteza was hired as the architect who completely redid the clubhouse and built a new larger swimming pool. The facility was renamed the Palos Verdes Beach and Athletic Club in 1993. Membership is open to P.V.E. residents at a hefty price point.

Palos Verdes Memorial Garden c.1947

Located at Palos Verdes Drive West and Via Del Puente

This monument was dedicated in 1947 to honor three local men who had lost their life in World War II whose names were Morris Shipley, Hammond Sadler, and John Bleecker. It now serves as a memorial to any local service man or woman who died in the military. It also serves to honor local police officers who may die as well. Such as the case when two local officers were killed in a botched robbery at the Hilton Hotel in Torrance whose names are Capt. Mike Tracy, and Sgt. Tom Vanderpool.

St. Francis Episcopal Church c.1951

Located at 2200 Via Rosa

Designed by: Walter Swindell Davis

Built as a replacement to replace St. John's church in downtown Los Angeles, this Romanesque Revival style church sits nestled in a beautiful setting among Eucalyptus trees near the ocean taking it's features from the Bascilica de St. Pietro in Italy.

Notable People

Ethel Barrymore (1879-1959) Real name: Ethel Mae Blythe


Born: Phildelphia, PA.

Died: Beverly Hills, California

Resting Place: Calvery Cemetary, Los Angeles, California

Bio Summary: Considered as the 'First Lady of American Theater, she worked in stage, screen, and TV as well, making 25 films in her career. The Barrymore family were a well known family through the years.

Parents: Maurice Barrymore (1849-1905) Real name: Herbert Arthur Chamberlayne Blythe, and Georgina Drew (1876-1893)

Siblings: John Barrymore (1882-1942) Real name: John Sydney Blythe, and Lionel Barrymore (1878-1954) real name Lionel Herbert Blythe

Spouse: Russell Griswold Colt (1882-1959)

Children: Ethel Barrymore Colt (1912-1977), John Drew Colt (1913-1975), and Samuel Colt (1909-1986)

The Bay Boys


This is a 'gang' of local surfers that feel entitled to the surfing area of Lunada Bay in P.V.E. They have been around since the 60's and resort to violence and vandalism to cars of anyone trying to use 'their space'. They are not kids, they are middle aged men who have (for the most part) inherited money from their families and therefore don't have to work. The local police have cracked down on them but they insist that it's their right to continue their quest. About 30 years ago they even erected a 'fort' down at the waters edge so they could have some place to hang out on shore. The Bay Boys have been involved in numerous law suits against them in more recent years.

Chester Bennington (1976-2017) Singer, Songwriter


Born: Phoenix, Arizona

Died: Palos Verdes Estates, California

Resting Place: Unknown

Chester was a musician and lead singer of Linkin Park. He also was an actor and a songwriter. He committed suicide by hanging in his P.V. E. home.

Parents: Lee Russell Bennington (1941-1999) and Susan Elaine Johnson (1942-2021)

Siblings: None

Spouse 1: Name withheld for privacy. Married 1996

Children: (1 child) Name withheld for privacy

Spouse 2: Name withheld for privacy. Married 2005

Children: (3 children) Names withheld for privacy

Note: Names of people above are still living and are withheld with regards to their privacy.

Charles Henry Cheney (1884-1943) Architect


Born: Rome, Italy

Died: Palos Verdes Estates, California

Resting Place: Unknown (Nearest Cemetery to PVE is Green Hills Memorial Park in Rancho Palos Verdes, California)

Bio Summary: Born in Rome to American parents, Charles graduated from U.C. Berkley, studied architect in Paris , then traveled the world before ending up in Palos Verdes to work on the Palos Verdes Project under Frederick Law Olmsted Jr. as (the first PVE) City Planner. He loved Palos Verdes so much he built a home here as well.

Parents: Lemuel Warren Cheney (1858-1921). and Mary Lucretcia Shepard (1862-1942) Married 1906

Siblings: Charles Henry (1884-1943), Sheldon Warren (1886-1980), Marshall Chipman (1888-1972), John Arnold (1890-1906)

Spouse: Cora Belle Barnhart (1878-1947) Married 1906

Children: Warren Dewitt (1907-1979), Charlotte Elizabeth (1910-1991), William Barnhart (1912-1934)

Juan Jose Dominguez (1736-1809) Solider, Cattleman


Born: Sinaloa de Leyva, Sinaloa Municipality, Sinaloa, Mexico

Died: San Juan Capistrano, Orange, California

Resting Place: San Gabriel Mission Cemetary, California

Bio Summary: Granted 'Usage' of 'The Hill' for grazing only. See History Heading Above.

Parents: Jose Ygnacio Dominquez (1710-1736) and Ana Maria Sepulveda (XXXX-XXXX)

Siblings: Unknown

Spouse: Profile Note: Some geology websites indicate Juan Jose was married, while other printed informational sources say he was not. It is the opinion of this profile manager that he was not married due in part he was a solider from an early age until retirement and did not have time for marriage. More research is needed.

Children: Profile Note: Some geology websites indicate Juan Jose had a child, while other printed informational sources say he did not. It is the opinion of this profile manager that he did not have children due in part he that was a solider from an early age until retirement and did not have time for marriage. More research is needed.

See WikiTree Profile Dominquez-413

Buddy Ebsen (1908-2003), Real name: Christian Ludolf Ebsen Jr.


Born: Belleville, Illinois

Died: Torrance Memorial Hospital, Torrance, California

Resting Place: Pacific Crest Cemetery, Redondo Beach, California

Bio Summary: Buddy started dancing at an early age. He and his sister starred on Broadway and in Vaudeville as a dancing and singing act. In 1935 he and his sister Vilma headed for Hollywood where Buddy landed various parts in movies. He starred with such greats as Judy Garland and Shirley Temple. He went on to play the Tin Man in the Wizard of Oz. Later on TV he was Jed Clampett in the Beverly Hillbillies and then he played a detective in Barnaby Jones. In later years buddy loved sailing and with a great crew he sailed his catamaran 'Polynesian Concept' to a first place win in the Los Angeles to Honolulu TransPacific Yacht Race beating out Actor James Arness on his yacht 'Seasmoke'

Parents: Christian Ludolf Ebsen Sr (1874-1951) and Francis Wendt (1884-1966)

Siblings: Helga Francis (1902-1994), and Norma (1904-1996)

Spouse 1: Ruth Margaret McCambridge (Cambridge) (1904-1968) Married 1936, (divorced 1942)

Children: (2 children)

Spouse 2: Nancy Wolcott (1918-2008) Married 1945 , (divorced 1985)

Children: (5 children)

Spouse 3: Dorothy 'Dotti' Knott (XXXX-XXXX) Married 1985

Children: 7 Children

See WikiTree Profile Ebsen-9

John Joseph Haggarty (aka J.J. Haggarty) (1860-1935) Businessman


Born: Sunderland, Durham, England

Died: Los Angeles, California

Resting Place: Calvary Cemetery, East Los Angeles, California

Bio Summary: John Joseph Haggarty was born of English and Irish decent. J.J. emigrated to New York in 1887 and eventually found his way to Minnesota where where he started his business. J.J. became a U.S. citizen in 1910. He and his wife traveled out to Los Angeles in 1902. Becoming a successful clothing store mogul he decided to build his large villa in the Palos Verdes Project which sat directly at the cliffs edge between 1927 and 1928. His store was originally called 'The New York Cloak and Suit House' and later became 'J.J. Haggarty, Inc.' and was located at 7th and Grand Street in Los Angeles. He also had stores in Pasadena and Beverly Hills, as well as others.

Parents: Joannis Haggarty (1842-1902) and Elizabeth Ann Watson Aitkinson (1835-1897)

Siblings: Michael Joseph Haggarty (1861–1941), Anthony Haggarty (1869–1934), Thomas Rodger Haggarty (1870–1954)

Spouse: Bertha Mary Schneider (1872-1944) Married in 1901.

Children: James Clarke Haggarty (1890-1964)

Frederick Law Olmsted Jr. (1870-1957) Landscape Architect


Born: Staten Island, New York

Died: Malibu, California

Resting Place: Old North Cemetery in Hartford, Connecticut

Bio Summary: He was the son of Frederick Law Olmsted Senior who designed Central Park in New York. Frederick Junior was a landscape architect and city planner for the Palos Verdes Project. Born in Staten Island , New York Junior went to Harvard and studied architecture. Knowing that he would be involved with the Palos Verdes Project for some time, he built a house for himself at the end of Rosita Place which is still there today as a private residence. Please do not disturb!

Parents: Frederick Law Olmsted Sr. (1822-1903) and Mary Cleveland Perkins (1830-1921)

Sibling: John Charles Olmsted (1852-1920)

Spouse: Sarah Hall Sharples (1875-1961) Married in 1911

Children: Charlotte Olmsted (1912-2006)

Donald William Peterman (1932–2011) Academy Award-nominated cinematographer


Born: Los Angeles, California

Died: Palos Verdes Estates, California

Resting Place: Unknown

Bio Summary: Worked on some of the great movies, was well known to the Hollywood crowd, and was a two time Academy Award Nominee. Started career as a documentary photographer for the Army during his service in the 1950's.

Parents: George William Peterman (1908-1939) and Ellen Mildred Sherrod (1910-2009)

Siblings: None

Spouse: Sally Hutcheson (XXXX-XXXX) Married 1956

Children: 2 Sons Still Living, Names withheld for privacy. Jay Peterman (1961-2018)

Hans Frederick Bernard Roessler (aka Fred Roessler) (1893-1965)


Born: Perth Amboy, New Jersey

Died: Palos Verdes Estates, California

Resting Place: Green Hills Memorial Park, Rancho Palos Verdes, California

Bio Summary: Fred was the first Mayor of the newly formed city of Palos Verdes Estates back in 1940 and served until his death at age 72. He was a military veteran from WW I. He and his wife moved to "the Hill' in 1931.

Parents: Franz Xavier Roessler (XXXX-XXXX) and Elizabeth Kuechler (1866-XXXX)

Siblings: Unknown

Spouse: Edna Lucille Hansen (1894-1987), Married 1921

Children: Mark Louis Roessler (1925-2007), Robert Roessler (XXXX-XXXX), Jean Roessler (XXXX-XXXX)

Francisco Xavier Sepulveda (1742-1788) Member of founding Los Angeles family.


Born: Sinaloa, Mexico

Died: Pueblo de Los Ángeles

Resting Place: Mission San Gabriel Arcángel Cemetery

Bio Summary: While not directly related to Palos Verdes Estates, the Sepulveda family played a big role in the area of Southern California and is noted herein as a reference. He was a Mexican Colonal Solider who volunteered to bring his family to a new beginning in 'Alta California' during an early settlement expedition. Sepulveda Blvd in Los Angeles is named for the family. They founded Pueblo de Los Ángeles.

See History Heading Above.

Parents: Juan José Sepúlveda (1720-1821) and Ana María Josefa García (1719-1742)


Spouse: Maria Candlearia de Redondo (1747-1804) Married 1762

Children: Juan Jose Sepulveda (1764-1808), Rafeael Redondo Sepuveda (1766-1802), Sebastion Sepulveda (1768-1811), Jose Manuel Redondo Sepulveda (1770-1800), Maria Teresa Sepuveda (1773-1829), Francisco Sevulveda (1775-1853), Maria Josefa Sepuveda (1777-1781, Jose Antonio Sepulveda (1780-1780), , Francisca Antonio Maria Sepulveda (1781-1831)

See WikiTree Profile Sepulveda-51

Walter Swindell Davis (1887-1973) Architect


Born: Baltimore, Maryland

Died: Long Beach, California

Resting Place: Unknown

Bio Summary: Walter graduated in 1910 from MIT with a BS and in 1911 with an MS. He was the lead architect for several buildings in the 'Palos Verdes Project'.

Parents: Frank Earlocher Davis (1839-XXXX) and Annie Legate Swindell (1853-1946)

Siblings: Francis Pierpont Davis (1884-1953), William E.S. Davis (1886-XXXX), Henry R. Davis (1891-XXXX), Dorothy (1891-XXXX).

Spouse: Alice Heulings Mumper (1888-1987) Married 1918

Children: Dorette Davis (1920's-1980's), Esther Davis (1920's-XXXX)

See WikiTree Profile Davis-11509

Frank Arthur Vanderlip Sr. (1864-1937) New York Investment Banker


Born: Aurora, Illinois

Died: New York Presbyterian Hospital, New York, NY

Resting Place: Sleepy Hollow Cemetery, Sleepy Hollow, Westchester County, New York

Bio Summary: Frank was a self educated farm boy started as a lathe operator in a machine shop, then a reporter for the Aurora Evening Post. He eventually became Assistant Secretary of the U.S. Treasury under U.S. President William McKinley, then President of National City Bank in New York. He was also a co-founder of the Federal Reserve System.

See 18th and 19th Century History category above.

Parents: Charles Edmond Vanderlip (1833-1878) and Charlotte Louise Woodworth (1846-1909)

Siblings: Wynne Hoyt Vanderlip (1875–1885), Ruth Isabel Vanderlip (1877-1959)

Spouse: Mabel Narcissa Cox (1880-1986) Married in 1903

Children: Frank Arthur Vanderlip Junior (1907-1993), Narcissa Vanderlip (1880-1966), Charlotte Vanderlip (1905-1976), Virginia Vanderlip (1909-1971), Kelvin Vanderlip ((1912-1956)

William Campbell Woosley (1877-1945) First Police Chief of Palos Verdes Estates


Born: Grayson, Kentucky

Died: Palos Verdes Estates, California

Resting Place: Torrance, California

Bio Summary: William was the first Police Chief of the new city of Palos Verdes Estates. He was an Army veteran who served in WW I as well as the Phillipines. His office was in a small room in Casa del Portal. The police in the early days also helped out as firemen in the community. The city still maintains its own Police Force today.

Parents: George William Woosley (1832-1889) and Mary Jane Durbin (1838-XXXX)

Siblings: Fred Woosley (1855-XXXX), Mary Jane Woosley (1859-XXXX), Mariah Woosley (1865-1880), James Arthur Woosley (1870-XXXX), Ruby Woosley (1878-1880)

Spouse: Amelia Brandt (1890-1966) Married 1908

Children: Unnamed Woosley (1909-1909), Unnamed Woosley (1912-1912), Caroline Amelia (1913-2005), James Arthur (1915-2005), William (1916-2007), Mary Jane (1918-1984)


  1. Dominquez Rancho Adobe Museum;
  2. Fink, Augusta, Time and the Terraced Land, 1966
  3. Palos Verdes Library, Local History Department
  4. Megowan, Bruce and Maureen, Historic Tales from Palos Verdes and the South Bay
  5. Google Maps, Visual Street References
  6. Personal Visits by Profile manager Stuart M. Wilson
  7. Megowan, Bruce and Maureen, Historic Tales from Palos Verdes and the South Bay
  8. Palos Verdes Library, History Dept.
  9. Fink, Augusta, Time and the Terraced Land, 1966
  10. Graham, Dana, History of the Neighborhood Church
  11. Peninsula Magazine, June 2022
  12. IMDb;
  13. The Famous People;
  14. Newsweek Article; By Alexander Nazaryan Dated 7/14/16
  15. Surfer Magazine Article By Ashtyn Douglas Dated September 25, 2017;
  16. Wikipedia;
  17. Rolling Stone magazine;
  18. Histroric Fresno;
  19. Family Search;
  20. Fink, Augusta, Time and the Terraced Land, 1966
  21. Geni;
  22. Daily Breeze Newpaper Article By Sam Gneere Dated 2/27/2016;
  23. Wikipedia;
  24. Daily Breeze Newspaper Article by Sam Gnerre Dated 4/7/18;
  25. Megowan, Bruce and Maureen, Historic Tales From Palos Verdes and the South Bay, 2014
  26. PCAD;
  27. Wikipedia;
  28. Ancestry;
  29. Legacy;
  30. Megowan, Bruce and Maureen, Historic Tales From Palos Verdes and the South Bay, 2014
  31. Daily Breeze Newspaper Article by Sam Gnerre Dated 4/13/13;
  32. Megowan, Bruce and Maureen, Historic Tales From Palos Verdes and the South Bay, 2014
  33. Fink, Augusta, Time and the Terraced Land, 1966
  34. PCAD;
  35. Historic Places LA;
  36. Megowan, Bruce and Maureen, Historic Tales From Palos Verdes and the South Bay, 2014
  37. Wikipedia;
  38. Find A Grave;
  39. Palos Verdes Estates Police;
  40. Family Search;

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