3644 Wilshire Boulevard

PLEASE SEE OUR COMPANION HISTORIES
BERKELEY SQUARE   WINDSOR SQUARE   FREMONT PLACE
   ST. JAMES PARK   WESTMORELAND PLACE   
FOR AN INTRODUCTION TO WILSHIRE BOULEVARD, CLICK HERE



Designed by John C. Austin and built for businessman J. Frank Walters in 1907 at the southwest corner of Wilshire and Harvard boulevards, 3644 became the home of banker George B. Chaffey in May 1908. President of the Hibernian Savings Bank at the time and well-known as an engineer and land developer, Chaffey was a prime figure in the story of bringing water to Los Angeles from the Owens Valley. One of the mythic builders of late-19th-century Southern California, he was one of at least three men called the "Father of the Imperial Valley" for bringing water to the region from the Colorado River; he also has the distinction of being the founder of Ontario, which he named for his native province, rating him a 13-foot bronze statue in front of the city hall at Upland. The Chaffey family remained at 3644 until 1916; the next year, it became the property of pioneer Los Angeles real estate man Milton Y. Kellam, a widower in his late 70s and father of five who did some remodeling to accommodate his four middle-aged, unmarried children and an older brother. Kellam died in late 1924; within two years, the house became the West Chester School for Girls. The Department of Building and Safety issued a demolition permit for the house on July 5, 1928; two years later it was replaced with a building by Morgan, Walls & Clements that still stands on the property, one built as a branch store for Mullen & Bluett clothiers (please see Wilshire After Its Houses).


As seen in the Los Angeles Times, October 5, 1926



Illustrations: LAT