Happy Lane

Dickson, Lark, and Padre lanes were laid out in 1921; Happy Lane was added in 1926. All were named by landowners Alvaro (1876-1932) and Laura (1882-1949) Pratt. Alvaro Alma Pratt was a civil engineer who hailed from a prominent Utah family; Anna Laura Tharsing was born in Minnesota to Danish immigrants. After going bankrupt on a failed summer resort in Salt Lake City, Alvaro moved to L.A. by 1910 and was living in Laurel Canyon by 1912. He and Laura married in 1914. The couple had two children: Dick (1920-1998) and Lark (1923-2019), hence the names of two of these cul-de-sacs – although it is curious that Lark Lane was named before Lark Pratt was. As for Padre and Happy? Perhaps the former referred to Papa Alvaro and the latter came from “happy as a lark”. Anyway, the Pratts moved to WeHo after subdividing their property here. Alvaro then became one of the main visionaries behind Mulholland Drive; ironically or not, he perished when his car plunged off another steep road in the Santa Susana Pass. Laura and the kids relocated to Santa Fe in 1941. Dick served as a translator during WWII, aided in Japan’s postwar reconstruction, and worked for Chrysler and Ford in Detroit. Lark married one William Anthony in 1951 and spent her final years in Austin.