history of los angeles eastside

The Eastside of Los Angeles is one of the oldest areas of the city. These neighborhoods date back to the 1870s and are loaded with history. Though there is some discussion about the boundaries of the Eastside of LA, the most popular Eastside neighborhoods include Silverlake, Echo Park, and Los Feliz.

History of Los Angeles Eastside

Silverlake: Silverlake was once two communities Edendale and Ivanhoe. These communities became one neighborhood is 1907 after the city of Los Angeles built the Silverlake Reservoir named after Commissioner Herman Silver who developed the project. Silverlake became a popular community in the 1930s after Walt Disney built his first film studio Hyperion. The area flourished in the Mid-Century as families moved in to be close to DTLA’s manufacturing hub. In the 1970s, after Los Angeles’ manufacturing hub moved, the neighborhood became a hotspot for the gay community which created a thriving arts culture. By the 1990s, Silverlake offered a hip neighborhood, affordable housing, and close proximity to both DTLA and Hollywood and became one of the most popular neighborhoods for young professionals, artists, and new families.

Echo Park: Echo Park is named for the park around Echo Lake, once a drinking water reservoir. The neighborhood traces its roots back to 1892. Made up of a diverse variety of smaller communities, Echo Park is a popular neighborhood for middle and working-class families. In the 1920s, Echo Park became a popular filming location for silent comedy movies and blacklisted filmmakers. During this time, the community was nicknamed “Red Hill” because many political activists lived in the neighborhood. After WWII, Echo Park became a popular neighborhood for immigrants who brought a variety of diverse culture to the area. By the 1990s, the thriving culture and variety of historic architecture began attracting residents looking to live in a unique community. Today, Echo Park is one of the most popular communities in DTLA because of the cultural diversity.

Los Feliz: Los Feliz was established in the 1830s after Jose Vicente Feliz received a land grant to build a ranch. In 1882, Colonel Griffith J. Griffith purchased half of the property and developed the first community. Griffith then bequeathed the land to Los Angeles after his passing in 1919. In the 1920s Los Feliz became a hub for the newly created movie industry. In fact, Mickey Mouse was “born” in Los Feliz. Just far enough from the city to develop into a cozy suburb, Los Feliz has thrived as a home for middle and working class families, as well as some of the most famous Hollywood actors. Today the community is the perfect neighborhood for people who want easy access to the city but also want to feel they are in the suburbs.

If you’d like to learn more about these historic Eastside Los Angeles neighborhoods, talk to the real estate experts at Aspire. We live and work in these communities and can help provide you with the background you need. Call us today to learn more!

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