Dutch Haven was the first Los Alamitos subdivision built after Rossmoor went in across Los Alamitos Boulevard.  I’m not sure if it was the same developer, but previously another Dutch Haven subdivision was built in the La Palma area (see photo to right) — which of course was populated by many dairy farmers of Dutch descent, and a subsequent one was built in 1962 in Huntington Beach (just southeast of Beach and Slater).

The photo to the left from 1960 features the very prominent Dutch Girl and all the requisite flags which accompanied every new housing tract.  This photo is taken from the Rossmoor side of the boulevard and is looking southeast at the corner of Harrisburg.

The brick wall is also reminiscent of Rossmoor’s signature wall, although it doesn’t look like there is a continuation pf bricks between the pilasters.  Beyond the homes is the flood channel and Orangewood.  The white building in the background is apparently St. Hedwig Church which opened in May 1960[ref]LA Times, May 22, 1960 – pM6, in the Cortese company’s weekly article: “St. Hedwig’s new Roman Catholic Church, located on the Southeast corner of Los Alamitos Blvd., across from main entrance to Rossmoor is now open.[/ref].  Good Shepherd didn’t open until after November 1961 [ref]LA Times, Nov. 2, 1961, pD11. “Pastor Named for New Church”[/ref]

Below is how the corner looks now (courtesy of Google maps)

 NOTE: The information about St. Hedwig Church was confirmed after a reader comment sent us back to our archives to research something we were too lazy to check out before.  But that’s the way the “project” process should work.

7 thoughts on “Then and Now: Dutch Haven”
  1. The white building in the background is indeed St. Hedwig church which was completed In April of 1960, I was baptized there in November of 1960 just 6 months after it opened and was dedicated…

  2. One other note Ross Cortese Donated the land For St. Hedwig with the caveat that it would be named for his mother. The back half of the lot where the school and Ball field are was sold to the church at a later date, at a very reduce price.. My father was involved in the deal as an accountant for the church, and my folks were and still are original Rossmoor residents..

  3. Interesting post! Would you please credit the Orange County Archives on any photos you use from our collection. (“Photo courtesy Orange County Archives.”) Thanks and best wishes,


    1. Hi Chris — We’ll gladly give credit to the OC Archives — You’ve done a great job putting many photos online at your Flickr site. Some of the photos I had from other sources, who couldn’t recall where they got them, and may have gotten them from you originally, but I was unaware. One of the tricky copyright issues of the digital age. So sorry about that. Are both the B&W photos available in the archives? Larry

  4. ‘Dutch Haven’ was the name of a ‘series/model lines’ that was built by William Lyon (still in business today) there was also a tract in 1000 Oaks, little more luxurious it has 2 story/split level plans. They also built a ‘cheaper line’ later as several tracts called ‘California Classics’, the cheapest was the tract in 1000 Oaks at $16990.

    1. You’re right. I know there were at least 16 Dutch Haven tracts in the Southern California area. Huntington Beach may have had three. One of them (by Marina High School and off Bolsa Chica) was located on property where Ross Cortese intended to build another Rossmoor-like community in 1960. But instead he decided to focus on Leisure Worlds and sold off the property which the Lyons Company picked up and converted into another Dutch Haven.

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