There's a Jeffrey Road in Irvine – and it's not named for the oversized giraffe in those toy store commercials. And Jeffrey wasn't the man's first name. Phil Brigandi, who wrote "Orange County Place Names A-Z," says it was his surname.
"Jeffrey, George Jeffrey, was a farmer down on the Irvine Ranch in the early 1900s and also served for a number of years in the 1920s and 1930s on the Orange County Board of Supervisors. One of his pet projects was, in fact, the Ortega Highway."
Jeffrey and a fellow supervisor in Riverside County provided the political muscle to build the highway. Their efforts were boosted by a free barbeque and rodeo held on the planned road. A real estate developer paid for the back-country bash – and they got out the word by dropping pamphlets from a World War I biplane. Ortega Highway finally opened 75 years ago.