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Leave it to Beaver on Universal City's Colonial Street and Beyond
a RetroWeb website Toward the end of the second (1958-59) season of the classic TV series, "Leave it to Beaver," mention was made in several episodes by TV father Ward and June Cleaver that they were house-hunting, and that a move was imminent. This tiny thread was woven into the storyline as a means of explaining the real-world change that was about to occur, for the production of the series relocated between the second and third seasons from Republic Pictures studios to the sprawling backlot at Universal City, and the Cleaver family "moved into" a new house on the lot's "Colonial Street," a residential street which itself dated to the mid-1940's. "Leave it to Beaver" would film for four seasons total at Universal before the series wrapped with the 1962-63 season. This site explores the neighborhood surrounding the Cleaver's house at "211 Pine Street," and the other areas of the Universal City backlot which served as the town of "Mayfield" in the series.

Recent Updates

- early July, 2010 - all images upgraded
- March 4, 2010 - several Colonial Street photos added
- April 6-9, 2010 - several photos added & upgraded
- April 28, 2010 - backlot city area map added


The Universal backlot's "Paramount House" as the Cleaver residence in Leave it to Beaver
The Paramount House, constructed for the 1955 film "The Desperate Hours," is seen here in its original Colonial Street location on the lot. All of the houses on the north side of Colonial Street backed up to the Los Angeles River Flood Control Channel just a few hundred feet behind them. This area of the Universal lot was originally known as "River Road," and dated to the silent era. In 1981, Colonial Street was relocated to another area of the Universal lot, and many of the facades, including the Paramount House, were re-assembled there, but in different locations relative to each other compared to their arrangement here on the original Colonial Street.
The main cast of Leave it to Beaver in front of the Paramount House.
Colonial Street to the east of the Cleaver house.
This end of Colonial Street was also known as "New England Street." The house to the right was featured in the later seasons of the 1957-62 series "Bachelor Father."
Colonial Street to the west of the Cleaver house
to the left, we see a side view of the "House of Seven Gables" (from the 1940 film by that name), and to the right, we see a glimpse of the "Maxim Home" (named for resident family in So Goes My Love, 1946), which would later be transformed into the home of "The Munsters." (The Maxim/Munsters house was three doors down the street from the Cleaver house)
Colonial Street to the west of the Cleaver house
another view west from The Cleaver house, but from an angle that also reveals the "Cromwell House" and "Ron's Barn," respectively, to the west of the "House of Seven Gables."
Houses immediately to left of Cleaver house
Immediately left (west) of the Cleaver house were two houses originally built as soundstage sets, then relocated in early 1950 to Colonial Street. Next door to the Cleaver house was the "Keller House" (named for its resident family in All My Sons, 1948), and two doors down was the "Allison Home" (family name in So Goes My Love, 1946) aka "Harvey House" (Harvey, 1950). The Harvey House was also was featured in the 1966 Don Knotts film, "The Ghost and Mr. Chicken."
Another view of the Keller House
This view of the Keller House also illustrates the sharp turn in Colonial Street (at the west end of the "New England Street" section), something not always evident in views from the Cleaver front yard. Colonial Street Historic Photograph
courtesy Bison Archives
(with gratitude also to Dickens Universal Archives) Universal City Backlot Keller House circa 1964
"Keller House" circa 1964

Another view of the Allison (aka Harvey) House
This view of the Allison House (two doors west of the Cleaver house) is from the south side of Colonial Street (from the elbow where the street turned, directly across from the Cleaver house).
The Maxim/Munster house as a backdrop
The soon-to-be "Munster" house is the setting for the above scene from the Leave it to Beaver episode "Community Chest."
The Maxim/Munster house again
The future "Munster" house, as an abandoned house in the Leave it to Beaver episode "Mistaken Identity."
View east up Colonial Street
In this view from the episode Beaver and Ivanhoe, we are several houses down from (west of) the Cleaver house, looking back east up the street. Straight ahead is the "House of Seven Gables" (a front view) with the Morrison House protruding to the left behind it, and to the right is the "Cromwell House."
View east up Colonial Street
this view is from a vantage point slightly farther east than that of the previous image. visible in the background, from left to right, are the Cleaver, Dana and Morrison houses, along with a portion of the Seven Gables house (far right)
The "Cromwell House"
a view of the "Cromwell House," named for the character Tacey Cromwell in One Desire (1955)
"Ron's Barn"
This house appeared in a farm setting in All That Heaven Allows (1955), and was afterward relocated to Colonial Street, immediately west of the "Cromwell House," where it appeared in Kathy O' (1958), among other films. In later years, it was home to the Hardy Boys.
view of Colonial Mansion and soundstage
this view down to the west end of Colonial Street is from the front yard of the Cromwell House on the south side of the street. seen here in the distance is the Colonial Mansion, and a portion of a Universal soundstage protruding into view (left).
The Universal backlot's Colonial Mansion, at the west end of Colonial Street.
The Colonial Mansion at the west end of Colonial Street was built for the 1927 silent film "Uncle Tom's Cabin," and appeared in numerous productions over many decades. The set was relocated in 1981, but was eventually demolished to make room for expansion. The set is seen here as it appeared in the Leave it to Beaver episode "Wally's Car Accident." The Colonial Mansion was also known as the "Shelby House" (named for the family in Uncle Tom's Cabin). The episode "All Night Party" also included scenes filmed in front of the mansion.
view of Colonial Mansion and Hubbard Home
seen here in this scene from the episode "The Hypnotist," is the Colonial Mansion in the distance (left) and portions of the "Hubbard Home" (center) and the Maxim/Munster house (right).
Hubbard House
The Hubbard House, named for its resident family in Another Part of the Forest (1948), was four houses down Colonial Street from (west of) the Cleaver/Paramount house, and other than the Colonial Mansion Cottage immediately to its left, was the last house on the street prior to arriving at the circle driveway to the Colonial Mansion.
The "Morrison House," directly across Colonial Street from the Cleaver/Paramount House
The Morrison House is named for characters by this name in the film River Lady (1948) Colonial Street Historic Photograph
courtesy Bison Archives
(with gratitude also to Dickens Universal Archives) Universal City Backlot Morrison House circa 1964
"Morrison House" circa 1964

Another angle on the "Morrison House"
The "Morrison House" was in the elbow of the sharp turn on Colonial Street, across the street from the Cleaver house. Here we see the east side of the house.
The "Mummy's Ghost" House
This house, immediately to left (east) of Morrison House, was across the street from the Cleaver house and up one door to the east (to the left, facing across the street). It appeared in the 1944 film, The Mummy's Ghost. Years later, this house would become known as the "Nancy Drew" House, after appearing in the 1977-79 TV series, "The Hardy Boys/Nancy Drew Mysteries."
Houses across street and east of Cleaver house
The "Mummy's Ghost" house is seen again in this view (on the right)...the same house seen in the previous image, but from around the corner and looking back. To the left is the large house seen in the image earlier on the page in which a bus is rounding the corner, a house which was featured in the later (NBC- & ABC-produced) seasons of the 1957-62 series "Bachelor Father."
The "Dana House"
This house, immediately to the right of the Cleaver/Paramount house, was home to Professor Dana and his daughters in the 1941 film Nice Girl?, and it later appeared in Bedtime for Bonzo (1951). This house was "modernized" during the run of Leave it to Beaver for its appearance in the film The Thrill of it All (1963), with the addition of a carport extension to its right (replacing a driveway and separate garage), and including revisions to the porch and its columns.
Dana House side yard
This composite view of the Dana House side yard and garage is from a pan sequence in the episode Three Boys and a Burro, prior to the modernization of the house.
Another view of the Dana House
a wider-angle view of the same house seen in the previous image... the house immediately to the right of the Cleaver house.
opening scene from the film All That Heaven Allows (1955)
(with thanks to Dennis Dickens & Stephen Rowley)
This view from the 1955 film All That Heaven Allows includes (l-r) the Keller House, the Paramount (Cleaver) House, the Dana house, and a house rarely seen in ground-level views (the next-to-last house on the north side of the street at its east end). The Los Angeles River Flood Control Channel is also visible in the background. Colonial Street Historic Photographs
courtesy Bison Archives
(with gratitude also to Dickens Universal Archives) Universal City Backlot small unnamed house circa 1964
small unnamed house circa 1964
this house was the next-to-last house on the north side of the east end of Colonial Street, two doors down from the Cleaver house. the house appeared in the 1956 film, "The Unguarded Moment." Universal City Backlot corner house circa 1964
Corner house circa 1964
this house sat at the northeast corner of Colonial Street at the intersection with Circle Drive
small unnamed house
this house two doors east of the Cleaver house was almost never used as a filming location in Leave it to Beaver. One exception was this scene from the episode "Wally the Businessman."
Corner house
In this scene from the episode "Wally's License," we have a rare view of the house at the corner of Colonial Street and Circle Drive...three doors up the street (east of) the Cleaver house. This house is seen in the 1941 film, Nice Girl?
opening pan sequence from the film All I Desire (1953)
(from captures by Stephen Rowley)
This view from the 1953 film All I Desire includes (l-r) the the Dana house (behind trees), the small unnamed house, the Corner House, and a view of Circle Drive to the east. Flashback to the Cleavers' Original "Neighborhood"
A Republic Studios "Sidebar"
The tour of Universal City as "Mayfield" will continue, but let's return for a few moments to the the series' first two years at Republic Studios, with a brief look at some of the sets on the Republic lot seen in the series.


Cleaver house phase 1
the Cleaver house, with the first phase of modifications, and as seen in the pilot "It's A Small World"
Cleaver house phase 2
the Cleaver house, in its final configuration as seen in the first two seasons of the series
Closing credits walk
the house to the right of the Cleaver house was seen regularly in the closing credits of the 2nd season
"Gilbert's" House
this shot created the illusion that "Gilbert's" house was across the street from the Cleavers, when in fact, the facade seen here was around the corner (see above)

we now return to Universal City...


View toward town from east end of Colonial Street
around the corner just a few houses east of the Cleaver/Paramount house were the downtown street sets of Universal City's backlot.
Downtown street corner
In this scene from the episode "Tire Trouble," Jerry Mathers and Tony Dow are at the same street corner seen in the distance in the previous image, in front of the Georgetown-style houses on Parkview Street, south of Circle Drive Park (see map above).
The "San Francisco Mansion"
In this scene from the episode "Beaver's Good Deed," the backlot's "San Francisco Mansion" is seen in the background as Jerry Mathers walks eastward on the sidewalk immediately south of Circle Drive Park. In the background can be seen the "Mummy's Ghost" house on New England / Colonial Street. Universal Studios Historic Photograph
courtesy Bison Archives
(with gratitude also to Dickens Universal Archives) Universal City Backlot Georgetown-Style Facades on Parkview Street at New England Street Intersection circa 1964
Georgetown-style facades on Parkview Street
circa 1964

In this photograph circa 1964, we see the same location as seen in the previous image from Leave it to Beaver. The intersection with Parkview Street was immediately at the east end of New England (Colonial) Street, and across from Circle Drive Park.
Commercial Facades / Courthouse Square
Seen here are commercial facades just south of Circle Drive Park, as well as Courthouse Square in the background.
Courthouse facade
The famous Universal Studios courthouse facade is visible in this scene from the Leave it to Beaver episode, "Beaver's Bike." The vantage point here is from New England St. immediately south of Circle Drive Park (see map above).
Courthouse as "Mayfield High School"
Universal Studios' courthouse, which was a flat facade, is seen here as "Mayfield High School" in the episode "Wally's Orchid," Universal Studios Historic Photographs
courtesy Bison Archives
(with gratitude also to Dickens Universal Archives)
Universal City Backlot Storefront Facades circa 1964
Storefront Facades South of Circle Drive
This facade immediately south of the Circle Drive park was a frequent filming location in Leave it to Beaver, sometimes with the Courthouse facade visible in the background, as seen a few frames above. Universal City Backlot Courthouse Facade circa 1964
Courthouse Facade circa 1964
This view of the Universal courthouse facade is from the corner seen at the left of the previous photo. In the background is the west side of the "Dabney House" (aka the "Southern Mansion"), which is featured in a capture farther down this page.
View from Courthouse Square toward Colonial Street
From this vantage point looking west from the northern edge of Courthouse Square, we can see down Colonial Street. The "Mummy's Ghost" house is visible in the distance to the right.
Circle Drive
"Circle Drive" was a semi-circular drive with a small church and several other New England-themed facades at the eastern end of Colonial Street. This view is looking northwest.
another view of Circle Drive
This view of Circle Drive is looking northeast, from the east end of Colonial Street.
another view of Circle Drive
a view of Circle Drive looking directly north, from the episode "Tire Trouble." the facade straight ahead is that of the small church along this street.
Circle Drive Facades
This scene from the episode "Sweatshirt Monsters" was filmed along the east sidewalk of Circle Drive. Universal Studios Historic Photographs
courtesy Bison Archives
(with gratitude also to Dickens Universal Archives)
Universal City Backlot Circle Drive Facades circa 1964
Circle Drive Facades circa 1964
Another frequent filming location in Leave it to Beaver was this sidewalk along Circle Drive and the intersection with Industrial Street. The storefront facades as seen in this photo circa 1964 have been modified at some point following the production of the series. Universal City Backlot Circle Drive and Park circa 1964
Circle Drive and Park circa 1964
This view looking east from the Circle Drive park matches that used in the series for a shot of Beaver and his classmates in front of "Grant Avenue Grammar School" (see "More Views from Colonial Street and Beyond" at the end of this page) Universal City Backlot Circle Drive Facades
Circle Drive Facades
Universal City Backlot Circle Drive Facades and Park Steps
Circle Drive Facades and Park Steps
Universal City Backlot Circle Drive Park circa 1964
Circle Drive Park circa 1964

Industrial Street
This scene from the episode "The Yard Birds" was filmed in an open area along "Industrial Street." Universal Studios Historic Photograph
courtesy Bison Archives Universal Studios Backlot Industrial Street Houses
"Industrial Street" Houses
featured in this photograph are the same two houses seen in the previous frame from Leave it to Beaver. Interestingly enough, the house to the left was formerly located on Colonial Street...on the very lot where the Paramount/Cleaver house was constructed in 1955.
Dabney House and field (as "Metzger Field")
As surprising as this may be, the pavilion-like structure and large playing field seen here in the episode "Beaver's Team" was on the Universal City backlot, just east of Courthouse Square. By 1963, however, other sets had encroached into the field area. The Dabney House, from the 1948 film Tap Roots, was also referred to on the Univeral lot as the "Southern Mansion" (not to be confused with the Colonial Mansion at the west end of Colonial Street), and was removed some time during the 1980's.
Road above Singapore Lake
(with thanks to Mark Bradley & Dennis Dickens)
This scene from the episode "Lumpy's Car Trouble" was filmed on the road above "Singapore Lake" on the lot.
Falls Lake (as "Friend's Lake")
(with thanks to Richard for the location ID)
This scene from the episode "Wally the Lifeguard" was filmed at the backlot's "Falls Lake"...in its original location on the lot. The beach umbrella is strategically placed in this scene for purposes of hiding grass-roofed structures on the north end of Falls Lake, revealed in the next photograph. Universal Studios Historic Photograph
courtesy Bison Archives
(with gratitude also to Dickens Universal Archives) Universal City Backlot Falls Lake circa 1964
Falls Lake circa 1964

Production Bungalows
This scene from the episode "The Parking Attendants" was filmed on a street lined with production bungalows in the northwest corner "front lot" adjacent to Lankershim Blvd. This area has changed radically over the decades since Leave it to Beaver was filmed, and production offices and these buildings have been moved several times.

More Views from Colonial Street and Beyond


View up Colonial Street
The Cleaver and Seven Gables houses are visible in the b.g.
Seven Gables Corner Porch
This corner porch on the "House of Seven Gables" served as the entrance to "Larry Mondello's" house in an episode.
"Mummy's Ghost" House

Colonial Mansion Cottage
In the episode "Eddie's Sweater, we get a rare view of the Colonial Mansion Cottage, immediately to the west of the Hubbard House.
Maxim House in b.g.

Falls Lake as "Friends Lake"

north of Courthouse Square
bordering the north side of Courthouse Square was the east end of New England Street and a row of commercial facades
the "Bachelor Father" house
this house also appeared in the TV series "Bachelor Father" starring John Forsythe
Cleaver Back Yard
The Colonial Street houses were full four-sided structures, and not simply facades. This allowed filming in the rear, including this scene behind the "Cleaver" house, which also includes a peak of the west side of the neighboring Dana/Bonzo house.
"Allison" (aka "Harvey") House

scene in Courthouse Square
this scene from the episode "Nobody Loves Me" was filmed in Courthouse Square
Circle Drive Intersection

Circle Drive East End Facade & Park Steps
The facade at the east end of Circle Drive served as "Grant Ave. Grammar School" in this scene from the episode "School Picture." The kids are standing on a large set of steps across the street from the facade, which led down into the Circle Drive park.
Circle Drive

Circle Drive

Brownstone St. Intersection

Circle Drive Park

South of Circle Dr. Park

scene in Courthouse Square

theater on New York Street

Colonial Street Back Road Barn
a dirt road behind the Cleaver house ran parallel to the L.A. River flood control channel, and to this barn, just a hundred feet or so from Circle Drive.

To see more of Colonial Street and
the Universal Studios backlot,
also visit:

Universal City : An Image Gallery


This web page debuted on December 29, 2009

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