Saturday, October 17, 2020

L.A. Architect Roland Coate 1958 Forest Lawn Glendale Cemetery

Roland Coate (December 5, 1890 – October 17, 1958) was an American architect. He designed many houses and buildings in California, three of which are listed on the National Register of Historic Places.

Early life

Roland Coate was born on December 5, 1890 in Richmond, Indiana.[1] He attended Earlham College in Richmond, Indiana from 1910 to 1912, and he graduated from Cornell University in Ithaca, New York in 1914.[1]


In 1924, Coate designed the Campbell House located at 1244 Wentworth Avenue in Pasadena, California.[2] He also designed the Robert E. Pond House located at 655 Bradford Street in Pasadena.[3] In 1925, he designed the Stafford W. Sixby House located at 1148 Garfield Avenue in South Pasadena, California, which went on to win a Certificate of Honor from the Southern California Chapter of the American Institute of Architects in 1927.[4] 

The following year, he designed the Eva K.J. Fudger House located at 211 Muirfield Road in Hancock Park, Los Angeles; it was later purchased by Howard Hughes (1905-1976).[5] He also designed Fudger's residence at 1103 San Ysidro Drive in Beverly Hills, California.[6]

In 1930, Coate designed the Elliott Bandini House located at Via Almar and Via Arroyo in Palos Verdes Estates, California.[7] The same year, he designed the Monterey Colonial style mansion of D.C. Norcross located at 673 Siena Way in Bel Air, Los Angeles; A.E. Hanson (1893-1986) was the landscape architect.[8] In 1931, he designed the Monterey Colonial style Pasadena Town Club located at 378 South Madison Avenue in Pasadena, California.[9] In 1933 and 1934, he designed the private residence of film producer David O. Selznick (1902-1965) in Beverly Hills.[10] In 1934, he designed the W.B Hart House in Pasadena, California and the Parley Johnson House in Downey, California.[11][12] The same year, he also designed the private residence of Henry W. O'Melveny located at 1709 Stone Canyon Road in Bel Air.[13] In 1939, he designed the Everett Sebring House located at 612 Berkshire Avenue in La Cañada Flintridge, California.[14] He renovated and enlarged the Jack Warner Estate. In 1941, he designed the private residence of Robert Taylor (1911-1969) and Barbara Stanwyck (1907-1990) located at 1101 Beverly Drive in Beverly Hills, California.[15]

Together with Silas Reese Burns (1855-1940), Sumner Hunt (1865-1938) and Aurele Vermeulen (1885-1983), Coate designed the headquarters of the Automobile Club of Southern California located at 2601 South Figueroa Street from 1921 to 1923.[16]

Together with Reginald Davis Johnson (1882-1952) and Gordon Kaufmann (1888–1949), Coate designed the All Saints Episcopal Church in Pasadena, California in 1923, listed on the National Register of Historic Places.[17][18][19] In 1924, they designed Camp Arthur Letts, named after Arthur Letts, of the Boy Scouts of America in the Hollywood Hills.[20] The same year, they designed the Hale Solar Laboratory and the Griffith House (at 1275 Hillcrest Avenue) in Pasadena.[21][22] In 1924-1925, they designed a new building for Saint Paul's Episcopal Cathedral located at 615 South Figueroa Street; it was demolished in the 1970s.[23] He also designed the private residence of H.C. Lippiatt & M.P. Taylor in Bel Air, Los Angeles.[24]

His achievements include works that are listed on the U.S. National Register of Historic Places.[25] These include (with attribution spellings that vary):

Casa de Parley Johnson, 7749 Florence Ave., Downey, California (Coate, Roland A.) Built 1927 in Mission/Spanish Revival style, NRHP-listed[25]

Hale Solar Laboratory, 740 Holladay Rd., Pasadena, California (Johnson, Kaufman & Coate), built 1924 in Mission/Spanish Revival, Spanish Colonial style, NRHP-listed[25]

Lake Arrowhead, 778 Shelter Cove Dr., Lake Arrowhead, California, also known as John O'Melveny Residence (Coate, Roland E.), NRHP-listed[25]

Coate became a Fellow of the American Institute of Architects in 1937.[1] His work was also part of the architecture event in the art competition at the 1936 Summer Olympics.[26]

Personal life and death

Coate had a beach house he built in 1935 located in Emerald Bay, Laguna Beach, Orange County, California.[27] He had 2 sons, William Bleecker Coate and Roland E Coate, Jr., also an architect, and one daughter, Suzanne Coate.[1] He died on October 17, 1958 in San Diego County, California.[1]

Roland Coate is buried in the Garden of Remembrance at Forest Lawn Memorial Park Glendale

Further reading

Appleton, Marc; Parsons, Bret; Vaught, Steve (2018). Master Architects of Southern California 1920-1940: Roland E. Coate. Tailwater Press. ISBN 978-0999666418.


1. Pacific Coast Architecture Database

2. Pacific Coast Architecture Database: Campbell House, Pasadena, CA

3. Pacific Coast Architecture Database: Robert E. Pond House, Pasadena, CA

4. Pacific Coast Architecture Database: Stafford W. Sixby House, South Pasadena, CA

5. Pacific Coast Architecture Database: Eva K.J. Fudger House, Hancock Park, Los Angeles, CA

6. Pacific Coast Architecture Database: Mrs. Richard B. Fudger House, Beverly Hills, CA

7. Pacific Coast Architecture Database: Elliott Bandini House, Palos Verdes Estates, California

8. Pacific Coast Architecture Database: D.C. Norcross House, Los Angeles, CA

9. Pacific Coast Architecture Database: Pasadena Town Club, Pasadena, CA

10. Pacific Coast Architecture Database: David O. Selznick House, Beverly Hills, CA

11. Pacific Coast Architecture Database: W.B Hart House, Pasadena, CA

12. Pacific Coast Architecture Database: Farley Johnson House, Downey, CA

13. Pacific Coast Architecture Database: Henry W. O'Melveny House, Los Angeles, CA

14. Pacific Coast Architecture Database: Everett Sebring House, La Cañada Flintridge, California

15. Pacific Coast Architecture Database: Robert Taylor and Barbara Stanwyck House, Beverly Hills, CA

16. Pacific Coast Architecture Database: Automobile Club of Southern California Headquarters

17. Pacific Coast Architecture Database: All Saints' Episcopal Church, Pasadena, CA

18. 'All Saints' church in Pasadena to have new home,' The Los Angeles Times, 5, 06/10/1923

19. 'All Saints' Church, Pasadena,' Architectural Digest, 8: 2, 69, 1931

20. Pacific Coast Architecture Database: Camp Arthur Letts, Boy Scouts of America, Hollywood Hills, CA

21. Pacific Coast Architecture Database: Hale Solar Laboratory, Pasadena, CA

22. Pacific Coast Architecture Database: Griffith House

23. Pacific Coast Architecture Database: Saint Paul's Episcopal Cathedral

24. Pacific Coast Architecture Database: C. Lippiatt & M.P. Taylor House, Bel Air, Los Angeles, CA

25. "National Register Information System.. National Register of Historic Places. National Park Service. July 9, 2010.

26. "Roland Coate." Olympedia. Retrieved 11 August 2020.

27. Pacific Coast Architecture Database: Roland E. Coate, Sr. Beach House, Laguna Beach, CA

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