Who's behind L.A. Street Names?

All research and writing is done by me, Mark Tapio Kines. (A little about my background here.) Website development is by Natalie MacLees. L.A. Street Names is a personal project and has no affiliation with any municipal entity or academic institution.

How reliable is this information?

I’ve worked hard to give you what I feel are the definitive etymologies of Los Angeles County streets (and cities, neighborhoods, etc.). I meticulously research each name from scratch, cross-referencing as many sources as possible. Sometimes my findings will conflict with what you’ll read on Wikipedia, in history blogs, or even in published texts. In such cases, and at the risk of sounding hubristic, I truly believe that the info on L.A. Street Names is more accurate. That said, street etymology is an inexact science. My research involves a lot of guesswork – and my guesses aren’t always right. But I will update a street writeup whenever I learn something new, and informed corrections are always welcome! If you have any, please contact me.

What are your sources?

Newspaper archives, public records (censuses, birth/death certificates, etc.), historic maps, old city directories from the Los Angeles Public Library, tract maps from the County Public Works Dept., the City of L.A.’s street name database, the Seaver Center at NHM, books, blogs, helpful historians and biographers, Bernice Kimball’s 1988 compendium Street Names of Los Angeles, and Find a Grave.

Why isn't my street on here?

There are over 50,000 streets in Los Angeles County. I simply won’t get to them all. I also tend to avoid writing about those with generic names (e.g., 5th Street, Hillside Avenue) unless there’s an interesting story behind them. If you don’t see your street here, I may already have it on my to-do list, but feel free to suggest it on my contact page anyway – I often prioritize requests.

Will there be a book?

I’ve been asked this a lot, and I’m not averse to the idea, but there are no current plans to publish a book.