Rowan Avenue

Although Thomas Edwin Rowan (1842-1901) was mayor of Los Angeles from 1892 to 1894, Rowan Avenue was named in 1890, while he was serving on the County Board of Supervisors. Born in New York to Irish immigrants, Tom Rowan was living in San Francisco in 1862 when he married Josephine Meyerhofer (1848-1919), a 14-year-old originally from Vienna, Austria. They moved to Los Angeles later that year with Rowan’s father James, who set up a bakery. (It’s unlikely that Rowan’s mother Jane joined them; she reportedly died in San Francisco in 1869, a year after James passed in L.A.) The genial Tom Rowan got into politics early – he was first elected city and county treasurer in 1868 – but was also a big real estate salesman: among his partners was drama teacher George Dobinson. The Rowans had three children, none of whom had kids of their own.