A number of streets in Southern California have Native American roots. A road near the Pacific Ocean has an Algonquin name... even though that tribe lived 3,000 miles away.
Chautauqua Boulevard in Pacific Palisades shares the name with a town in upstate New York. Randy Young, author of "Street Names of Pacific Palisades," says, "It's on a lake, and they think it could be Algonquin for bag tied in the middle, or the mists that settle there."
Chautauqua was also a religious and educational movement founded in the late 1870s by a Methodist minister. The phenomenon swept the country. In 1922, a West Coast center was founded in Pacific Palisades. "This was a Methodist Chautauqua site," Young says, "but it was also affiliated with UCLA and they had very famous speakers. And they had an orchestra."
The property was purchased by the Presbyterians in 1943 as a private retreat center. It became public land in 1994 when the Santa Monica Mountains Conservancy bought the land. But the name remains... Chautauqua Blvd.
(Airdate for this story: 7/21/07)