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History of Los Angeles, California

Los Angeles, CA  is the second-largest city in America, the first being New York. It has a population of more than 4 million people. It is also the economic powerhouse of the West Coast. Hollywood is located in Los Angeles.


The city was discovered by a Portuguese sailor called Juan Cabrillo in 1542. He was on a military mission to colonize newfound areas. Upon his arrival the people he found Tongva and Chumash tribes. who were hunters and gatherers, their history in Los Angeles is traced up to 800BC.


In 1769 Franciscan missionary Juan Cresp, reached Los Angeles and established an outpost. 10 years late in 1781 a group of 44 settlers from Mexico. They were of European, African and Native American descent. They established a farming village on the banks of the biggest river there. At the time, the missionaries began established missions in the area which remained a small ranch town until the Mexicans colonized it.

When New Spain got its independence from the Spanish Empire in 1820, the town of Los Angeles was ruled by a governor and it was made the regional capital of California.

Americans Take Over

The American Mexican wars broke out in 1846 and the entire California area was annexed into the United States. Interestingly, in 1948 gold deposits were discovered in the Sacramento Valley and there was a gold rush with many people flocking the area to mine. The rush greatly uplifted the economy of the local area by increasing demand for food which was supplied by the local ranches and farms in the area.

A track connecting Los Angeles to the other parts of the United States was completed in 1881. The upward trend of Los Angeles continued when in 1892, petroleum was discovered in the area. These 2 events greatly changed the fortunes of Los Angeles since many more people migrated to the area increasing demand for food and land.

The 1900 Era

At the beginning of the 1900s, the population of Los Angeles was above 100,000 people and it was created as a municipality. Local politicians and leaders began planning out the future of the city. At this time media companies had established Hollywood which was merged to Los Angeles in 1910. By 1923 a quarter of American’s petroleum output was being in Los Angeles.

World War 2 greatly benefited the economy of Los Angeles by being a center of wartime manufacturing of warships and aircraft. The fortunes of the city continued to soar in later years with the establishment of the Silicon Valley and Hollywood to what it is today, the epicenter of the world.