Pasadena History: How Mountain Road Got its Name

A weekly look at some of Pasadena’s history as told in ‘The Pasadena Peninsula.’

Here is your weekly dose of some Pasadena history thanks to The Pasadena Peninsula by Isabel Shipley Cunningham.

Ever wonder where Mountain Road got its name? There aren’t exactly any high mountain peaks on the peninsula.

“The name Mountain Road has puzzled later generations,” Cunningham wrote. “British settlers expected a coastal plain to be flat like the Eastern Shore of Maryland. Captain John Smith described the western shore of the Chesapeake ‘mountainous,’ and an early land grant on Gibson Island was called Severn Mountains. An English colonist who sailed up the Severn River from Annapolis to Round Bay counted forty ‘little mountains or eminences’ at least 155 feet high. Though the hills on the peninsula are not tall, early settlers who were looking up from a boat at sea level called them mountains.”


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