McConnell Drive

Walter Roland “W.R.” McConnell (1874-1931) subdivided the Monte-Mar Vista tract in 1924. Of his two partners, Fred Forrester also has a street here, but John P. Hays was excluded as he didn’t co-own the land. W.R. McConnell was born in Pittsburgh and fought in the Spanish–American War before settling in Cleveland to sell insurance. There he married his first wife Pearl and had two daughters, Lillian and Virginia. They all came to SoCal in early 1905 and initially settled in Ocean Park; the following year, McConnell was running a mining investment scheme with Forrester’s brother Arthur. There followed a number of real estate endeavors and a stint with an oil company in Prescott, AZ before returning to L.A. in 1920. McConnell wed his second wife Mary in 1923, one year after Pearl died of tuberculosis. The couple was living on Motor Place when W.R. died suddenly in the Mojave Desert, presumably while working on another mining venture.