4 Times the History of Los Angeles Was Shaped

Los Angeles is one of the most interesting and colorful cities in the US and the world. The city enjoys a wide array of cultures that gifted us a rich heritage, a land where we share traditions, cuisine, entertainment, and a quite young history.

Los Angeles is a newcomer if we compare it to a European city, for example. Nonetheless, its history is interesting and passionate enough to keep us paying attention. In many occasions, Los Angeles has been through very rough times but today, as we can experience ourselves, the city remains as a reference for culture and development, business and revolution in its many forms.

Let’s address 4 times when the history of our beloved city changed forever.

The 44 Settlers

1781 was the year. In this moment in time, 44 settlers founded El Pueblo de Los Angeles, which would be the original settlement that later evolved into the city we all know. Gaspar de Portolà, a Spanish soldier, led the well-known Portolà expedition that introduced for the first time Europeans in the region, mostly through what became Baja California and San Diego.

In 1769, the Portolà expedition got to know the region, only to come back later and build the settlement. Portolà himself became the governor of Las Californias.

Oil Makes its Apparition

We all can agree on that oil changed the worldwide panorama. Its industrial application and the widespread use of the automobile skyrocketed oil demand. Los Angeles was one of the main players in the global scenario when it came to oil.

In 1892, the first oil well was discovered by Edward Doheny and that single event lead to the transformation of the region. Rich oilmen somehow shaped the future of Los Angeles in less than three decades. Before the Great Depression, Los Angeles was producing around a quarter of the global demand for oil.

Thomas Edison Made Us a Favor

Hollywood has always been considered the world capital of the movie industry. However, if Thomas Edison would take a different decision a century ago, the history would be wildly different today.

Before the creation of Hollywood as we know it today, the movie industry operated mostly in New York. Nonetheless, movie studios were having legal problems with Thomas Edison, who enjoyed great leverage in terms of patents. In 1910, the situation forced studios to find another place to do their craft and that place was Hollywood, located right on the other coast.

War Efforts

After the disgraceful attack on Pearl Harbor, the US went all-in into World War II and required to develop a capable air force to fight in both flanks. The government looked for a region with the right conditions to get the mass production of aircraft running. In the end, Los Angeles was chosen to do the job.

This era skyrocketed the local air transport industry with many well-known aerospatial companies establishing headquarters and airports in the region. The war effort ultimately influenced the economic development of Los Angeles alongside the massive migration of workers.