Hawthorne Boulevard

The city of Hawthorne, birthplace of the Beach Boys, was named after Nathaniel Hawthorne (1804-1864), author of The Scarlet Letter, The House of the Seven Gables, etc. The land was developed by the Hawthorne Improvement Company, cofounded in 1905 by cousins Benjamin Lombard Harding (1853-1928) and Harry Dana Lombard (1868-1932). Although both had Massachusetts roots like their town’s namesake, it was reportedly Harding’s daughter Lauraine (later Mrs. James E. Woolwine, 1883-1946) who named the settlement after her favorite writer – but it’s a myth that she shared Nathaniel Hawthorne’s July 4th birthday: she was born on April 3rd. Hawthorne Avenue, laid out in 1906, was quietly upgraded to a “Boulevard” in 1922. Hollywood footnote: In 1924, a young actress named Jane Peters needed a stage name, so she thought of her old family friend Harry Dana Lombard and became movie star Carole Lombard.