Gorham Avenue

Named in 1905 for Harry Motson Gorham (1859-1951), then-president of the Santa Monica Land and Water Company, developers of Westgate. He got his job the old-fashioned way: his uncle, Senator John Percival Jones (1829-1912), had cofounded Santa Monica and still owned half the place. Gorham was born in Cleveland, where his English grandparents had settled. As he was growing up, his uncle was becoming big in mining and politics, first in California then in Nevada, where the Comstock silver lode made him rich. Jones was elected U.S. Senator for the latter state in 1873; four years later, Gorham moved to Gold Hill, NV to manage Jones’s mines. Jones had established Santa Monica by then and was splitting his time between there and Washington. Gorham finally left Gold Hill for SM in 1903 and would preside over the Bank of Santa Monica, another of his uncle’s ventures. From the “L.A. Is a Small Town” Department: Gorham’s sister Bessie married Schuyler Cole, son of another U.S. Senator (and Hollywood developer), and his son Hal married the sister of Cloverfield‘s namesake.