Rindge Avenue

Named in 1902 for Frederick Hastings Rindge (1857-1905) as thanks for investing in the Playa del Rey townsite – but Rindge is better known as the guy who owned Malibu. Born in Cambridge, MA, Frederick was the only surviving child of Samuel and Clarissa Rindge, that city’s richest couple. He attended Harvard right down the street and graduated in 1879. Six years later, he inherited a cool $3 million from his deceased parents. Then came 1887, a big year for the wealthy “orphan”: Rindge donated a generous sum to Cambridge to build a new city hall and high school, married Rhoda “May” Knight (1864-1941), and moved to Los Angeles, where he and May would have three children (see Rhoda Street about their daughter) and he would become one of the city’s top financiers. In 1892, the Rindges purchased the 13,316 acre Rancho Topanga Malibu Sequit from Henry Workman Keller, whose father “Don Mateo” Keller had bought it in the 1850s. It was the last big undeveloped land grant from California’s old colonial days, and the Rindges liked it that way. In fact after Frederick’s death, May spent the rest of her life and much of the Rindge fortune trying to keep Malibu totally private, which included a losing battle with the State of California over the right-of-way for a new highway: today’s PCH.