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How Los Angeles Earned Its Name


As with a lot of the United States, the area now consisting of Los Angeles county was once settled by Native Americans. Then Europeans started to colonize the area. Gaspar de Portola, a group of missionaries, first camped out in the area near what is now Los Angeles River. By 1771, Father Junipero Serra built the San Gabriel Mission. Spaniards came in regular fashion to eventually find what they called El Pueblo de la Reyna Los Angeles, which literally means the Pueblo of the Queen of Angels.


What started as a missionary town became a small town in the desert and was eventually taken over by America after the war with Mexico ended in 1846. Then came the gold rush of the mid-1800s and early 1900s. Los Angeles county was officially recognized in 1850, several months before even California gained statehood. Being a city near the border and on the ocean, it became a place not just for people to seek their fortunes, but to migrate to and start their American dream.


Several hundred years later, people are still flocking to Los Angeles. They may not be looking for gold, but glory can still be had. This is what ultimately led Los Angeles to become one of the largest and wealthiest cities in the world.


Read about reasons to visit Los Angeles.