Pico Street

Whereas many Angelenos know about Pío Pico (1801-1894) – last governor of Alta California, namesake of Pico Blvd., etc. – not as many know about his brother Andrés (1810-1876), for whom this street was named c. 1887. (In truth it might be named for both brothers.) Andrés Pico, ranchero and Mexican Army adjutant, was a San Diego native who moved up to Los Angeles in 1844. The following year, he secured a lease on the secularized lands around Mission San Fernando, which he used as a country home and ranch. (Who granted the lease? His brother, el gobernador.) When the Mexican–American War kicked off, Andrés Pico himself commanded Mexican forces in California until peacefully surrendering to U.S. commander John C. Frémont in 1847 at the Treaty of Cahuenga. No hard feelings: not only did Pico go on to serve on the California state legislature, he and Frémont became friends. He also briefly owned the southern half of the San Fernando Valley before selling it to his brother Pío to pay off his debts; Pío later sold it to Isaac Lankershim. The Andrés Pico Adobe – really the home of his son Rómulo (see Pico Canyon Road) – is the oldest house in the Valley.