Clark Street

Eli Payson Clark (1847-1931) was the brother-in-law and business partner of Moses H. Sherman. Born and raised in Iowa, Clark went to Prescott, Arizona Territory in 1875 and was soon appointed territorial auditor. There he met Sherman – then married Sherman’s sister Lucy (1851-1942) in 1880. Eleven years later, the Clarks joined Sherman in Los Angeles, a city that would be transformed by the two men’s many enterprises, most notably the Los Angeles-Pacific Railroad – a defunct streetcar line that they relaunched in 1898. The partners built its rail yards in a new town they christened “Sherman”: today’s West Hollywood. Eventually dominating Southland real estate, Clark and Sherman were also lifelong friends. They’re even buried together – along with Lucy Clark and Sherman’s daughter Hazeltine – at Forest Lawn. Clark Street was one of the first streets in Sherman. It began north of Sunset and ran down to the L.A.P.R.R. yards, now the Pacific Design Center and an MTA bus depot. “But wait,” you say, “isn’t that San Vicente Boulevard?” For the most part, yes: when San Vicente was extended north through the rail yards in 1968, it consumed most of Clark Street, consigning Eli P. Clark’s mighty legacy to two little blocks north of Sunset.