Whittier, California is a city located in Los Angeles County, California. Over the years, the city has witnessed many historical events of great importance. From the arrival of Spanish explorers to the development of the city, there are numerous interesting events that have taken place in and around Whittier. In this article, we will take a look at some of the major historical events that have taken place near Whittier, California.
1. The arrival of the Spanish explorers: The area around Whittier was originally inhabited by the Tongva people, who were later replaced by the Spanish explorers. In the late 1700s, Spanish explorers led by Gaspar de Portolá arrived in the area and established the first mission in California. The Whittier area played a significant role in the establishment of the mission system in California.
2. The Mexican-American War: The Mexican-American War was fought in the mid-1800s between the United States and Mexico. The Battle of Rio San Gabriel was fought near Whittier on January 8, 1847. It was a significant battle that led to the retreat of Mexican forces and ultimately paved the way for the eventual capture of Los Angeles by American troops.
3. The discovery of oil: In 1892, the discovery of oil in the nearby city of Los Angeles led to a massive population shift towards the region. Soon after, oil was discovered in the Whittier area as well, which led to the development of the area and boosted its economy.
4. The establishment of Whittier College: In 1887, Whittier College was established by the Society of Friends (Quakers). The college remains a thriving institution in the city to this day, and has played an important role in the social and cultural development of the city.
5. The development of the Whittier Narrows Dam: In the 1950s, the construction of the Whittier Narrows Dam was completed, which helped to control the flooding of the San Gabriel River. The dam was a significant engineering feat of its time and has helped to protect the Whittier area from floods for over half a century.
6. The Mexican Repatriation: In the 1930s, the Whittier area witnessed a massive repatriation of Mexicans, many of whom were citizens of the United States. This was a result of the severe economic conditions of the Great Depression, which led to the forced removal of thousands of Mexican nationals from the country.
7. The 1987 Whittier Narrows earthquake: On October 1, 1987, the Whittier area was hit by a powerful earthquake measuring 5.9 on the Richter scale. The earthquake caused significant damage to the city and surrounding areas, and was felt as far away as San Diego and Las Vegas.
In conclusion, the Whittier area has witnessed many historical events of great significance. From the arrival of Spanish explorers to the establishment of Whittier College, the area has contributed significantly to the cultural and economic development of the region. The Whittier area remains an important historical site of great interest to historians, archaeologists, and visitors alike.
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