Leona Heights runs directly above Highway 13 from Redwood Road to just past where 13 and 580 meet. It is named after mountain lions which used to be frequent visitors to the area. 

Horseshoe Creek (now mostly underground) provided the water for the Laundry Farm which slid down the hill and ended business at that location in 1857 and moved to West Oakland. The name stuck and the area continued to be a popular park. A hotel was built on the site. It burned down for the second time in 1892 and wasn't rebuilt.

Historic Leona Heights1The Realty Syndicate began developing and advertising the area in the 1920s. Before the area was developed, the area was home to mostly small farms and lots of chicken farms. The Realty Syndicate seemed to feel this was a big marketing boon and talked up the ability to raise healthy chickens in the area as a selling point.

The area was also billed as good spot for commuters: it was located a convenient walk or streetcar ride away from the Chevrolet Auto Factory or the Durant Motor Company.

Leona Heights is also the site of some historic mines and quarries including the Alma Mine, Devil's Punchbowl.


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  1. Alameda County: The Eden of the Pacific. Tribune Publishing Co: 1898.
  2. Mailman, Erika. Oakland's Neighborhoods. Oakland: Mailman Press, 2005.