Mt Gleason Avenue

Whether you can see Mount Gleason from this street, I cannot say, but I can tell you who the mountain itself is named for: miner George Gleason (1839-1926). He was born in Manchester, CT; according to a mini-autobiography that he wrote in 1907, he spent several years at sea and served in the Confederate(!) Army in the Civil War before heading to California in 1863. He was definitely mining for quartz, gold, and other minerals in Soledad Canyon – on the north side of the San Gabriels – in 1867. A newspaper article from 1869 stated that two young men were building a road “to the top of the highest mountain” to bring timber down to shore up Gleason’s mines. This “highest mountain” (just over 6,500 feet) was anointed Mount Gleason by 1873. Legend has it that Gleason’s men struck gold while building the road and that Gleason’s mapmaker brother Tom was the one to name the peak, but I found no reports of the gold and Gleason had no such brother. At any rate, he moved his mining interests to Piru in 1879 and spent the rest of his life in Ventura County. He never married. As for Mt Gleason Avenue, it was called Walnut Avenue until 1929.