BALDWIN HILLS ESTATES

Located in ECWANDC's Area 2.
There are fewer places in the city with so much access to the downtown L.A. skyline. Taken from the Hahn Park Eastern Gateway, looking down Don Lorenzo.Photo copyright Yvonne Ellett

There are few neighborhoods in the city with so much access to the downtown L.A. skyline. Taken from the Hahn Park Eastern Gateway, looking down Don Lorenzo.
Photo copyright Yvonne Ellett

Baldwin Hills Estates rests atop the northeast slope of the Baldwin Hills. 

The neighborhood is locally known as “The Dons”, because all but one street begins with the formal title of Los Angeles’ original land holders.  In fact, a small building from Don Tomás Sánchez’ original rancho is attached to The Consolidated Realtists’ Plaza.

The custom housing tract, begun in 1953, was developed by the grandchildren of Lucky Baldwin with Home Savings and Loans.  The now-defunct bank held all of the mortgages and was responsible for creating one of the first HOA’s in the country — not only to keep the look of the modern neighborhood in tact, but also to give its residents more clout in the City.  The original residents were mostly doctors, which bestowed the moniker of “Pill Hill” to the affluent neighborhood.

By the early 70’s, the racial make-up of the area began to change as African Americans took ownership.  Movie stars gave way to political and business leaders, doctors and white collar workers.  The original HOA became a non-profit.  In 2011’s heated Redistricting battle, Baldwin Hills Estates remained in the 8th District while its neighbors were swept into the 10th.

A sadder historical note, on July 2, 1985 an arson’s fire swept up the eastern slope of La Brea avenue to eventually destroy or damage 66 homes. Three residents lost their lives that day and plaque in their memory was placed at the intersection of Don Carlos/Don Diego.

Contact the Baldwin Hills Estates Homeowners Association at (323) 292-4342.
Mailing:  PO Box 8897, Los Angeles, California 90008
Email:  bhesecretary@yahoo.com

A helicopter flies over the remnants of a home on Don Milagro.Photograph copyright Jon Androwski

A helicopter flies over the remnants of a home on Don Milagro destroyed in the July 1985 Baldwin Hills Estates fire.
Photograph copyright Jon Androwski

 

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