Today, the name Los Angeles has become synonymous with the film industry. However, the city, which goes by the initials LA, has a history going back long before the movies. It is known for a variety of culture and business operations. As a result, it is the most populated city in the state of California. LA has the second highest population in the entire United States, second only to New York City.
Spanish and Mexican Roots
Spanish governor Felipe de Neve founded Los Angeles in the early 1780s. Following Mexico’s war for independence, the city was claimed by Mexico in 1821. It remained that way until the Mexican American War came to an end. At that time, the city, along with the rest of California, was purchased by The United States as part of the Treaty of Guadalupe Hidalgo. The city became an official municipality in 1850, months before California was officially granted statehood.
In the 1970s, the South Pacific Railroad line was finally completed. This allowed the construction of railroads in the LA area. However, the city really started to grow when oil was discovered in the 1920s. It became the country’s largest producer of oil and actually provided about a quarter of the oil supply for the entire world.
Continued Expansion and Population Growth
By the beginning of the twentieth century, the population of LA had skyrocketed to over one hundred thousand people. Although this boom was great for businesses, it put a significant strain on the city’s water supply. In order to provide enough water for the growing population, the LA Aqueduct was constructed in 1913. This allowed the city of LA to provide for the many people who continued to migrate there.
In 1910, the film industry was just beginning but LA had already been established as its epicenter. At that time, there were already ten film studios set up in the area. In fact, about eighty percent of the world’s film studios could be found in Los Angeles. The film industry seemed almost immune to the great depression of the 1920s and allowed the city’s economy to thrive as well.
Over the years, this city has been known for a number of things, but the entertainment industry continues to be its claim to fame. People continue to move there every year to seek success in entertainment, culture and business. It will no doubt remain one of the most thriving cities in the country.