Friday, May 19, 2006


From the book "Mexico in Los Angeles" by Castillo and Ríos
10 million years ago- Los Angeles is under the Ocean. In time, the earth's crust moves north. Part of Santa Barbara joins the Santa Mónica Mountains. Los Angeles becomes a basin, mountains, valleys, hills, coast, temperate climate and vegetation.
23,000 BC - The Man of Los Angeles is buried, while hunting mammoth.
9,000 BC - First human settlements in the basin.
0 - Birth of Christ.
500 AD - After the Wisconsin glacier, a drought provokes great indigenous migrations. The Gabrielinos, who speak Shoson, a Uto-Aztec language, settle in the basin, from Mojave, displacing the Hokan speakers, who are related to the Chumash. Experts in irrigation, the indigenous people construct a network of canals that allow for relatively big human populations. Between 40 and 60 indigenous towns are established from San Bernardino to Santa Mónica, including Santa Catalina, San Nicolás and San Clemente.
1530 - Colonization begins in Sinaloa.
1533 - The Spaniards discover the Baja California peninsula.
1539 - Spaniards explore Santa Cruz island.
1540 - Expedition of Coronado in California.
1542 -Cabrillo enters California waters, reaches Catalina and San Diego.
1602 -Vizcaino, trying to reach a safe harbor for the Manila galleon, reaches Los Angeles.
1620 - Sonoran silver mines begin to be colonized.
1750 - (circa) Comanches force Apaches to move to the Mexican West. The Apaches clash with the established populations.
1765 - Gálvez begins a series of fortifications in Alta California against Russian and English colonization.
1768 - Gálvez heads an expedition to Monterey (California).
1769 -The first Mexican and Spanish settlers arrive at the Río Porciúncula. The basin is populated by Shoshon, Cupan and Takic, of the Uto-Aztec family. (Gabrielinos and Fernandinos). The Cahuilla in Riverside have a population of 10,000 in 50 towns. The Kameyaay (Tipai-ipai, or Yuman) comprise 8,000 inhabitants in San Diego. Some indigenous populations are; Kawengnam, Asuzangna, Topanga, Cucamongna, Tuhumgna, Maliwu, Simi, Kamulos, Kastic, Yangna, Suangna, Pasbengna. The Mexicans and Spaniards married indigenous women to form a new mestizo population. Among the Spanish institutions and agendas are found: the missions, the presidios, the civil populations, the mining districts, the religious conversion of the indigenous people, the pacification of Indians hostile to colonization, training and control of the labor force, expansion of grazing land for cattle, and the defense of New Spain against hostile Europeans. Among the expeditionaries are Gaspar de Portola and Junípero Serra. Commanding the soldiers is the Mexican Rivera y Moncada. In addition there are 25 Catalán soldiers, a group of Franciscan missionaries, a dozen artisans and 80 indigenous people from Baja California.
1775 -Manuel Butrón, married to an indigenous woman, obtains permission to graze 140 miles (varas) of land in Carmel.
1779 - There are three presidios in the basin, one town and eight missions, 500 colonizers and 100,000 Christianized Indians.
1781 - Mexican Captain Rivera y Moncada recruits Indians, Mexicans, Mulattos, criollos and mestizos for the Foundation of Los Angeles.

4th OF SEPTEMBER 1781 - Los Angeles is founded as part of Mexican colonization of Alta California, a prehistoric place called "Yangna" by the indigenous people, and includes all the region, not just the city. Governor Felipe de Neve baptizes and becomes godfather to 3 dozen Gabrielinos, inhabitants of Yangna. Some last names of the Founders are: Venegas, Quintero, Rodríguez, Nesa, Navarro, Rosas, Velesco y Lara, Clemente, Moreno, and Miranda. Among them are eight Indians, two Blacks, nine Mulattos, one Mestizo, one Chinese (Filipino) , and two Spaniards, (one of whom is a bigamist fleeing from the law). Other important last names are: de Fages, Zúñiga, Laso de Vega, Camero, Féliz, Cota, Lugo and Rivera y Moncada. Some ranches established at this time are: Los Alamitos, Los Cerritos, Los Félis, Los Palos Verdes, Topanga, Malibu, Simi. Migration comes from Sonora, Sinaloa, Baja California, Jalisco, Chihuahua, Durango, el Bajío, and México City.
Farmers become more and more day workers and cowboys.
1784 - Juan José Domínguez takes his cattle ( 3,000 mares, 1,100 ponies, 700 cows, 600 calves and 26 bulls) to Domínguez Hills from San Diego, where he also grows 2,000 acres of grain. José María Verdugo obtains 36,000 acres in the San Rafael-Glendale- Burbank Ranch. Manuel Pérez Nieto occupies 130,000 acres in Ranch Los Nietos.
1787 - Property titles are transferred to the population. José Vicente Félix is named Commissioner of Santa Barbara.
1788 - The first municipal government is established. Two fanegas (100 bushels) of corn are imposed as taxes to the government. The first mayor, José Venegas is an Indian from
1789 -Manuel Camero, mulatto, is named regent of the City. The number of houses in Los Angeles grows to 30. San Gabriel Arcángel becomes the second city in importance.
1793 -The population of Alta California comprises 32 Spaniards, 435 Criollos, 183 Mulattos, 418 Mestizos and 3,234 Christianized Indians. These numbers are proportional to the Mexican population in general.
1796 - José Vicente Félix occupies Rancho Los Féliz. Governor Diego de Borica distributes
free sheep among the population to encourage wool production. He also orders free land to landless families.
1798 - The first court building is built under Mayor Guillermo Soto. With 3,400 bushels of corn, Los Angeles supplies the market of San Blas, Nayarit.
Foreign ships begin to arrive, related to the illegal hunting of otter skins by the Russians, U.S. American smuggling, whale hunting and Asian commerce in Latin América. The most important participants of this illegal commerce are the Franciscan missionaries, who helped hide contraband in the Missions.
1804 - José Bartolomé Tapia occupies Rancho Topanga-Malibu.
1805 - William Shaler is the first U.S. American to disembark in Los Angeles.
1810 -War against Spain is declared. At the same time, 400 Mohave warriors and a few neophytes make plans to invade and destroy Los Angeles and take the cattle.
1812 - Los Angeles is shaken by an earthquake.
1813 - The Spanish ship, La Flor de Callao, arrives from Perú and leaves several small canons after it realizes how unarmed the region is.
1814 -San Gabriel priests complain that the close contact between Indians and Mexicans is such that all are better speakers of the indigenous language than of Spanish.
1815 -A group of Russian and English illegal otter hunters is arrested.
1818 -Hippolite Bouchard from Buenos Aires invades Monterey, burning and plundering. Juan Ortega forms a militia and Bouchard leaves when he is unable to break the people's resistance. Joseph Chapman, a U.S. deserter, stays to work in San Gabriel as an artisan.
1821 -Independence of México from Spain. Los Angeles becomes juridically, politically and economically Mexican, as well as culturally. Racial terms are merely a description of physical attributes, not, as in the English colonies of the U.S., an irreversible definition of one's social condition.
After the plague and drought, the harvest overtakes that of previous years.
1822 - Some of the ranches established at this time are; Santa Mónica, La Brea, La Ballona, Las Cienegas, San Vicente. Mexican Independence Day holidays are celebrated.
The first California elections for representative to the Mexican Congress are held. Congressman Sola is elected to represent California in México City.
1823 - After the short Iturbide Empire, the country is officially recognized as a Republic. Missionaries do not easily adapt to the new conditions.
There is an increase in the Mexican population in Alta California.
1824 - The Mexican Federal Constitution names Alta California as Mexican Territory. There is a Legislature comprised of elected Deputies who represent each of the Districts.
1825 - Los Angeles is affected by heavy flooding.
1826 - A group of U.S. hunters arrives at San Gabriel, headed by Jedediah Smith.
1826 - U.S. Americans stage a revolt in Texas.
1827 - Los Angeles is shaken by a strong earthquake.
1828 - U.S. American Abel Stearns marries the daughter of Mexican rancher Juan Bandini, becomes a Mexican citizen and begins to exercise influence. Luciano Valdez is named Principal of the town school.
1830 -Mexicans constitute the biggest part of the population. The growth of private ranches constitutes a danger to the Missions. Legal commerce increases. Merchants pay tariffs in Monterey and San Pedro. There exists a rivalry between Monterey and Los Angeles
to obtain military and political leadership. The Missions are secularized, there is an increase in the number of ranches. A provincial elite with political power and property which had belonged to the Missions is created.
Threats from the United States increase.
The population numbers 1,160 in Los Angeles with 2,377 Indians, primarily at the Missions.
Politically, the most powerful family in Alta California is the Carrillo family. The brothers, Jos‚ Antonio, Anastasio and Carlos Antonio, have influence in the region and in the Mexican Congress.
1831 -The Mexican governor assigns Manuel Victoria as governor.
Victoria loses his popularity and is challenged by Pico, Carrillo and Bandini at Cahuenga Pass. To avoid a larger crisis Pico backs down in favor of Echandia.
1833 -The son of the mayor of Los Angeles, Cosme Damian, receives the Rancho Carpintería concession.
With the secularization of the Missions, Indian converts are divided between those that go to the city, often through marriage with Mexicans, and those that establish themselves with other tribes to avoid assimilation. Unlike the deportations of Andrew Jackson, Indians, although they may lose their lands in the Missions, can continue as members of the community.
There in an increase in grants of Mission lands, with which commercial export increases to 100,000 animal skins, 2,500 measures (centenas) of lard and soap.
Pío Pico marries María Ignacia Alvarado with governor Figueroa acting as godfather.
1836 -The Mexican government names Los Angeles a City, turning it into the economic, political and social center of Southern Alta California. México adopts a centralized government in which the States and Territories become "Departments". Alta California is divided into two districts. The question whether politicians should be elected by Californians or México City officials becomes a point of heated argument.
1837 - Some ranches established at this time are; Azusa (Duarte), (Dalton), La Cañada, La Habra, San Pascual, Santa Anita, Temescal, Tujunga.
In order for a ranch to be successful, it should have cattle and horses, increase the work force and produce commercial goods. Ranches never become feudal property, much less inhabited by "Spanish aristocrats".
1838 -Ignacio Coronel from México City, is named principal of the Los Angeles school.
1840 -Orange, San Bernardino and Riverside are occupied by "gente de razón" and U.S. Indians who recognize Mexican sovereignty.
Pío Pico moves from San Diego to live in Los Angeles. Protected by Juan Bandini, a San Diego politician, Pico is one of the richest men in Los Angeles.
Andrés Pico is commander of the Mexican army in Los Angeles.
There is the formation of a mutualist society, Los Amigos del País to give social security pensions and encourage literary readings.
1842 - Juan López discovers gold nuggets in San Fernando.
1844 - The Los Angeles population reaches 3,000.
Efforts are made to build new buildings and put in public lighting. Clubs, a dance hall and reading circles are established. The schools are kept up.
1845 - Some of the ranches established at this time are; Los Alamos, El Encino, Santa Catalina, La Puente, San Fernando, Potrero Grande, San Francisquito.
The Missionaries consider the religious conversion of the Indians top priority. Public officials feel that the Missions are subordinate to the Presidios and the towns. Missionaries continue to be loyal to Spain, while the secular majority remains loyal to México.
The National Government withdraws Manuel Micheltorena and confirms Pío Pico as governor, with Los Angeles, which has the largest population, as the Capital. The people of Monterey, always fighting to control the governorship, the representatives, taxes and the military, protest. An agreement is reached so that while Los Angeles takes control of the governor and the Legislature, Monterey may keep control of customs and the military.
In front of Elysian Park, there is a system of canals dug to supply water to the ranches. The canals are the property of all the people. Crops are; corn, beans, barley and wheat, besides chile, squash, coriander and melon. There is an increase in herds of horses and cattle. There is a commercial exchange with the pagan, (not Christianized) Indians, who are used to trading between California, Nevada, Colorado and Arizona.
Class distinctions develop, based on the economic exploitation of the Indians by Mexican ranchers.
Tyler gives Taylor orders to penetrate Texas in Mexican territory as a provocation for war.
Diplomatic relations between México and the United States are broken.
1846 - Abel Stearns, who was nationalized a Mexican, works in secret to support U.S . interests.
The U.S. army and Naval Force invade Alta California. There is a Department meeting to decide on a defensive course of action. Pío Pico tries to get military help from México. He is ordered to remain in Guaymas and Hermosillo. Charles Frémont incites a revolt in San Fernando. U.S. colonizers proclaim a false republic in Sonoma. Los Angeles and other towns are occupied. Popular resistance breaks out all over the State. Stockton leaves a garrison under Gillespie's orders to occupy Los Angeles. Gillespie arbitrarily humiliates the population and arrests many innocent citizens, treating them like an inferior race.
Servulio Varela and Leonardo Cota organize a popular uprising against the military occupation of the U.S. Americans. Half the population signs a proclamation that states that the U.S. Americans want to subjugate Mexicans into slavery, destroy industry and agriculture to better take it over, and force them off their property. It states that all
California wants to do is to remain part of México. U.S. authority is rejected. Those who side with the Gringos will be declared traitors and shot, as will be those who do not take up arms in defense of Mexican California. All U.S. property will be confiscated to pay for the defense against the invasion. In view of the subsequent resistance, this documents expresses the true feelings of Angelinos.
José Maréa Flores is named Commander in Chief, José Antonio Carrillo is named Major General, Andrés Pico is Squadron Commander. Servulio Varela is commander of 50 volunteers who arrest 20 U.S. Americans under the command of Isaac Williams. September 26 and 27 Mexicans attack and defeat the enemy at Rancho Chino. On September 26, Gillespie and the garrison entrenched at the Board of Education surrender to Mexican Angelinos. On October 4, they are allowed to march to San Diego and board the Vandalia. Hundreds of more volunteers join Flores's forces. Guerrilla attacks start up in Santa Barbara and the north.
Mexican women also offer resistance to the invaders.
All of Alta California is once again in the hands of Mexicans. Nevertheless, the enemy has 3,000 men and five fully armed warships. The Mexicans only have 700 men with
On October 6 Mervine brings troops on the Savannah to San Diego. He invades Rancho Domínguez with 400 marines. Carrillo counters the attack on the 8th. Angelinos manage to kill 6 U.S. Americans and wound another 6. There are no Mexicans wounded and the U.S. Captain is forced to retreat to the ship. One hundred Mexican cowboys defeat one hundred well- armed marines. On October 23, Stockton disembarks from the Congress with 800 men to prepare for a new invasion. There are skirmishes in San Pedro. Carrillo adopts tricks to frighten the enemy, appearing to have more troops than in reality, and Stockton withdraws to San Diego.
On December 6 and 7 the Battle of San Pascual takes place near Escondido, with a Mexican victory. Andrés Pico, with 80 men armed with lances, faces Kearney with 140 men, armed with the latest weapons, who have arrived from New México under President Polk's orders and guided by Kit Carson.
Under the conviction that Mexicans are cowards and "the greasers will not fight", they are attacked at dawn on the 6th, and in spite of being more numerous, are defeated by the Angelinos. Pico's lancers attack from all sides. Kit Carson escapes to ask Stockton for help. 14 U.S. Americans die, but no Mexican, in spite of the fact that the Gringos have heavy artillery, sabers and pistols.
A few days after, 200 men arrive from San Diego to rescue Kearney, who declares a victory, even though he was defeated and lost his right arm in the bargain.
Total war is unleashed against the Mexicans. Frémont's forces arrive from the north and join two other newly arrived regiments. Stockton leaves San Diego with 600 men. The Angelinos have, by necessity, young cadets and men between 50 and 60 years old.
1847 - The Battle on the San Gabriel River is fought. The Angelinos are defeated.
The Battle of La Mesa (City of Industry) is fought. The Angelinos are defeated.
On January 10, Pico and Carrillo act as representatives of the military and civil authorities of the Mexican Department of Alta California upon signing the Treaty of
Cahuenga. The treaty declares a truce and suspends hostilities until the end of the war between the two nations.
The Mormon Battalions of Coronel Stevenson's volunteers arrive from New York. They set up Fort Moore, on the Board of Education site, and at gun point force the Mexicans to submit to the political sovereignty of the United States.
1848 - The Treaty of Guadalupe Hidalgo is signed in México City. It guarantees Mexicans in the new territories United States citizenship, the right to continue in the Roman Catholic
Church, and protection of land ownership.
A few Mexican ranchers become fabulously wealthy selling meat at the highest prices to the gold prospectors. ($1,000 a head makes a Mexican elite rich).
Anglo-European merchants and politicians speak Spanish out of necessity, since they are the minority. The main events of this period are; a military occupation and increasing U.S. domination, hostility against the Mexican population and increasing resistance by the Mexican elite and the people, a re-accommodation between a sector of the established Mexican elite and the new Anglo-American elite (malinchismo), composed of public officials, lawyers and merchants, an economic boom due to the gold rush, the loss of Mexican lands, the monopoly of new jobs by Anglo Americans, gang activity and unemployment, U.S. American violence, the collapse of the cattle industry, and the economic depression.
Elections are held for Mayor. Angelinos vote for Ignacio Palomares and José Sepúlveda. The U.S. military annul the elections and name Stephen C. Foster as Mayor. Mexicans boycott his authority.
1849 -There is a new Constitution written by Carrillo, Domínguez, Stearns, Reid and Foster. There is a working relationship established between the invaders and the Mexican
1850 - 75% of the population continues to be Mexican. California is admitted into the Union as a State. Elections are held by an Anglo-Mexican elite where Augustín Olvera is elected judge, Benjam¡n Hayes, District Attorney, Ignacio del Valle judge, etc.
1851 -The first U.S. American population is established in El Monte, predominantly by Texas Rangers, who begin to practice terrorism on the Mexican population. There is a revolt by the Cahuilla Indians, the Kanayaay, the Cocopa and the Mexicans united against the U.S. Americans. Los Angeles becomes a haven for Anglo-European thieves, gamblers and prostitutes, among them Jack Powers, a Mormon soldier, and the Sidney Ducks, an Australian gang.
The City of Angels has earned the nickname "Los Diablos". Racial tension increases as vigilante committees lynch Mexican gunslingers, letting whites go free or allowing them to escape through transparent legal maneuvers. A deputy sheriff is charged with killing a hard-working family man named Ruíz and is acquitted. The deputy shoots Ruíz while attempting to repossess a guitar purchased on credit. The Los Angeles Rangers step into the tense situation that follows, the third vigilante group formed to deal with "Mexican bandits." The group is made up of 23 prominent judges, lawyers and others, including Horace Bell, Phineas Banning, Judge Benjamin Hayes and Mayor Stephen Foster, who briefly resigns his office to join. Those they take alive were given quick "justice" in the courtroom before being rushed to the nearby gallows.
Juan Flores escapes from San Quentin with a seasoned convict named Pancho Daniel. While fleeing south, they form a gang called Manillas--Handcuffs--made up of 50 fugitives, including former Angelino Andrés Fontes who joins the gang on the promise that Flores help him kill Los Angeles County Sheriff James R. Barton, who has earlier sent him to prison on a trumped-up charge.
1856 - Newspapers are published in Los Angeles. La Estrella is bi-lingual and El Clamor Público is all in Spanish. El Clamor denounces the injustices against Mexicans. The Spanish language press has wide distribution with increased literacy. One tendency responds to the interests of the richest Anglo-Mexicans, the other is in the hands of the middle-working class and has nationalist and socialist tendencies.
1857- Between about 1850 and 1870, 35 public executions take place.
With a price on their heads, the Juan Flores’s band hides out in the Crescenta Valley, which includes some of the most rugged and remote canyons in the Angeles National Forest. On the gang's trail with a five-man posse, Barton, a carpenter turned "lawman", stops at the rancho of Don Jose Sepúlveda, whose house stands at the head of Newport Bay. While the posse breakfasts, their guns are tampered with by a servant, Chola Martina, one of Flores’s' sweethearts.
When the lawmen reach a spot about 300 yards southwest of where the Laguna Freeway now crosses San Diego Creek, nearly 20 Manillas ride downhill, bushwhacking them. The posse's guns are useless. Fontes shoots Barton three times in the heart, once through the right eye and again through the arm. Three other "lawmen" also are killed, while two escape.
Fear rises when word of the "Barton Massacre" reaches L.A. Hysterical citizens believe Flores and his cohorts are headed back to town "to murder white people."
A 119-man is posse formed, headed by Andrés Pico
Taken by surprise, Flores and 10 others scramble to the top of a 200-foot peak in Santiago Canyon, which now bears the his name. Flores escaped by riding his blindfolded horse down a steep 50-foot ledge, then using the brush growing on the hillside to climb to safety.
Shortly afterward, however, Flores and two companions are caught and sent to jail, but soon escape.
Recaptured four days later at Simi Pass, Flores is taken to Los Angeles At 2 p.m. on Valentine's Day in 1857, on wooden benches, there sits a crowd of 3,000 Angelinos--more than half the county's population--watching 22-year-old Flores slowly strangle because the amateur hangman has bungled the job. Nine other members of Flores' band are strung up from the heavy crossbeam over the gate at the Tomlinson and Griffith Corral & Lumberyard, while others go to prison.
More lynchings take place following Flores' execution, some of known bandits, others of innocents. Fontes escapes to México, where he is later killed, and Pancho Daniel is captured a year later. In the midst of his trial, a Gringo mob breaks into the jail and hangs him from the roof beam.
The grisly history of the Tomlinson and Griffith corral ends with the notorious Chinese Massacre of 1871, where a few of the 22 victims of an anti-Asian pogrom are hanged.
1858 - Francisco Ramírez in El Clamor Público protests the seizure of lands and the cultural overpowering of the Mexicans by the U.S. Americans, and manifests his objections to the state of affairs. He lists 10 article of resistance.
1860 - Los Angeles becomes a multicultural city with Mexicans on the decline and U.S. Americans on the ascendancy. Mexicans now are 47.1%. Spanish continues to be the main language, acting as a lingua franca because the colonizers speak different tongues.
María Guadalupe Pérez dies. She was born in 1768, and her lifespan covered all the history of El Pueblo de Los Angeles, through the Colonial period, through the Mexican National
period and now the U.S. American period. Her granddaughter marries Andrés Pico.
1863 -La Junta Patritióca de Juárez patronizes Independence Day and 5 de Mayo.
1870 -The Newspaper La Raza editorializes on Los Angeles's racial, spiritual and cultural ties with the Latin American people. At the same time a group of cultural, political and social associations and clubs define the Mexican cultural identity.
1875 -The mutualist society, that has disappeared during the war, begins again to aid in the construction of a hospital and the building of reserve capital to help those in need.
1876 - With the introduction of the railroad, Mexicans finally become a minority in Los Angeles.
1877 -La Crónica complains about public services, saying sanitation in the Mexican Barrio is inferior to that of the Anglo Barrio. It makes a call to the people to organize and act.
City Hall blames the Mexicans for a smallpox epidemic, saying they are "dirty". The newspaper El Demócrata denies the allegations, identifying only 21 cases in the Mexican community.
1878 -The 5 de Mayo parade is held, headed by Carrillo and the Junta, 200 members, La Guardia Zaragoza, and 10 units of political and social organizations. Unlike previous parades, which were mostly religious, it begins to take on a markedly social and political character.
1879 - The Mutualist Society proposes a Spanish-speaking school.
1880 -Segregation of Mexican and Anglo-American barrios is complete. Mexicans have to live near their workplace, in the worst areas and in shacks. The Barrios are formed; Main Street, the Los Angeles River. Mexicans are a necessary force for the economic development of the city. There is a group consciousness and pride in the Barrio. This helps to calm the tension provoked by economic instability, racism, and urbanization.
1884 -Lummis and his circle of friends at the LA Times create an image on Southern California compounded by a romanticized "Spanish" mission past (no mention of Mexicans or other natives) a politically conservative anti-labor, anti-union present, a racially homogeneous future and a perfect climate to attract more Anglos.
1887 - José Rodríguez in the newspaper El Jóven, protests the inequality of treatment by City Hall toward Mexicans.
1889 -Many Anglo-American observers predict the disappearance of the Mexican population in Southern California and the Southwest. The greatest achievement of the Mexican population at this time is its persistence and the defense of its cultural identity.
1895 - (c) Oil is discovered in Southern California. 2,000 wells are sunk in five years, adding to the boom and flooding more Anglos into the area.
1900 Los Angeles formally becomes a racist, apartheid city. Mexicans and Anglos are prohibited from living next to each other. Anglo-Americans are always in an advantageous position in relation to Mexicans in business, politics and in social circles. For that reason Mexicans prefer their own institutions and culture, where they find pride and dignity.
1901 - Henry Huntington unites the Pacific Railway Co and Pacific Electric and installs railroad cars. The city begins to expand. Los Angeles has a population of 102,479. Mexicans work in construction, in industry, in unskilled labor, and contribute greatly to the transformation of the city.
1910 -Los Angeles has a population of 319,198. It becomes the largest Mexican population in the country, along with San Antonio and El Paso. Mexican barrios comprise North Hill, Buena Vista, New High, Main-Olvera, and Alameda, Flats between 1st and 17th, Aliso, Fickett, Whittier, Boyle Heights, Olympic, Mission (Lincoln Park), Santa Fé, Santa Mónica, Vermont, Slauson, Hooper, Pacoima and San Fernando.
Mexican newspapers are; La Prensa, Regeneración, El Heraldo, La Gaceta, El Correo Mexicano, El Eco de México and Don Cacahuate. The monthly press is made up of La Fuerza Consciente, and the semimonthly Pluma Roja. These papers cover not only events in the U.S., but everything about the Mexican Revolution.
1912 -The Housing Commission begins to uproot Mexicans, leaving 82 families at 7th and Utah homeless and in total poverty. The average salary of Mexicans is 36.85 a month. Those working on the railroads don't pay rent, but earn less. Liberal Party leaders in Los Angeles are arrested and put in jail.
1913 -There are 46 branches of the Alianza Hispano-Americana in the Southwest.
1915 -According to a study (Bogardus), the economic level of Mexicans is the lowest in the city. El Heraldo has 4,000 readers. La Pluma Roja, the socialist paper is edited by Blanca de Moncaleano. In Regeneración, Flores Magón advocates a violent revolution on both sides of the border, which will see the end of capitalism and foreign investment, and which will give political freedom to all Mexicans citizens and non-citizens alike, and that those who produce the wealth should be the owners of it.
1916 - Flores Magón is arrested and sent to Leavenworth. A strong Mexican community in Elysian Park is formed.
1918 -La Alianza celebrates its 9th convention in Los Angeles, with 250 delegates who elect Samuel Brown, son of a Mexican mother. La Alianza has lawyers, doctors, businessmen who can cover membership costs, as opposed to workers and the unemployed who cannot. El Club Anáhuac is for young men who have formed a baseball team, and La Sociedad Moctezuma is for young Mexican women who organize dances, raise funds, and participate in the patriotic (Mexican) holidays.
1920 A tire company is set up on Atlantic Boulevard and Union Pacific, employing 8,000 workers, many of them Mexican. Belvedere is the Barrio with the greatest number of Mexicans in the city. One sixth of all Mexican grocery stores are concentrated on Brooklyn Avenue. Thanks to the size, diversity and sophistication of the Mexican population, the most expensive and attractive shows from Latin America are brought in.
1922 - There are three Mexican barrios in Pasadena.
1925 - The Mexican population is more than 97,100, with 167,000 inhabitants in the County.
1926 - First synagogue established in Los Angeles
1927 - The Census confirms the high birth rate of Mexicans. The average number of children per couple is 4.3. The City of El Segundo advertises to all who want to buy a house there that "there are no Mexicans" there.
1928 - One out of every four workers in the fruit and vegetable packing industry is Mexican.
Rubén Salazar is eight months old when his parents move from Juarez to El Paso. He becomes a naturalized citizen, attends public schools
1929 - With the Great Depression, Los Angeles has the greatest number of unemployed in California.
1930 -There are new Barrios formed with the increase in population; Brooklyn Heights, Boyle Heights, Ramona and Maravilla. There are also new Barrios in Vernon, Maywood, Commerce, Bell and Cudahy, all near places of work. Mexicans come to understand that there is one type of work reserved for them and another for Anglos. Almost all the good jobs are reserved for the Anglo-Americans. Lynwood advertises to those that want to buy a house that it is "restricted".
Anglo-Americans pretend that Mexicans are a temporary labor force and deny that they are there permanently. 18% of Mexicans own their own home. 10% of Teamsters are Mexican. They also work in cement, plastering, packing houses, lumber companies, brick and tile, hotels and furniture companies. While the minimum wage is 18.90 a week, Mexicans get 13 to 17 dollars a week.
La Federación de Votantes, a political organization, is formed.
The Mexican population of the U.S. is 1,422,533.
The U.S. government reduces the granting of visas to Mexicans by 97%. Thousands of Mexicans are forcibly repatriated.
1934 -Rose Pesotta arrives in Los Angeles to organize the International Lady Garment Workers Union, 75% of which are Mexican women. Garment workers strike to form the Union.
1936 -There are the beginnings of a Mexican middle class, with specialized and trained workers.
1938 -The Congress of Hispanic-Speaking people is formed to fight against discrimination by means of the boycott.
1940 - 100,000 Mexicans are expelled from Los Angeles. The total population is 1,504,277 in Los Angeles, 107,680 of which are Mexican. These numbers are inexact. Mexicans are classed as "Spanish" or "White", thereby obscuring their numbers. Many refuse to be counted for fear of persecution. There are Mexicans everywhere; Santa Mónica, Azusa, Burbank, Glendale, Torrance, Pacoima, Pasadena, Monterrey Park, Pomona, San Gabriel, Culver City, Long Beach, Placencia, Fullerton, La Puente, San Fernando, Norwalk, El Monte, Gardena, Florence, North Hollywood, Inglewood, Vernon, Claremont, La Habra, and Venice, often with their own businesses, clubs and holidays. Their children go to the worst schools, and they get the worst jobs. The average salary for a U.S. American family is 1,220 a year, for a Mexican family it is 700 dollars. Mexicans represent a multiplicity of classes in the social, economic and cultural spheres. They are 5 or 10 per cent of the population, but they account for 25% of war casualties. Mexicans believe the propaganda that they are fighting for freedom. Besides, the army is the only job they can get.
1942 -English language newspapers start to call young Mexicans "Pachucos" and "Zoosuiters", as if they were criminal elements, in spite of the fact that they have a lower crime rate than Anglo young people.
A popular, organized defense absolves the young Mexicans allegedly involved in the Sleepy Lagoon case.
1943 - White military men and other fanatics spread out to the Barrios and ghettos and beat up any young people they can find. Social scientists blame the Mexicans for not adapting to second class citizenship and assimilating. High class Mexicans see Chicanos as common people who don't even speak good Spanish. There is nevertheless a rich cultural life in the Barrio. The theaters Maya, Mason, Liberty and Roosevelt are founded, where there are live performances, by Jorge Negrete, Pedro Infante, María Félix, Rosita Quintana, Luís Aguilar and Cantinflas. Radio Stations proliferate, among them KWKW. Advertisements promote U.S. capitalist products in Spanish, proof of the great buying power of the Community.
1945 - At war's end, Black workers become the new unskilled labor force.
1947 -Ignacio López forms the Unity League to combat discrimination in housing and education.The Community Services Organization is set up to register thousands of Latino voters.
1950 - Actors like Anthony Quinn and Andy Russell are forced to deny their Latino roots in order to succeed in Hollywood. Mexicans have no control of the very institutions that they support. Young people are forbidden to speak Spanish in school. Their names are changed to the English equivalent. Cultural institutions are located outside the reach of the Barrios. Mexicans are never found in the executive or administrative offices of the corporations, nor are they part of personnel. When Mexicans are able to move into White neighborhoods, Whites flee, leaving libraries, schools and parks in a state of disrepair. The Catholic church hires only Irish or Spanish priests, never Mexican priests.
Can Chicanos acquire the valuable techniques necessary for their economic survival without abandoning their own cultural heritage? Community members value their ethnic background, but they lack institutions that could permit them to stand up to White objections to them. There are 1,970,368 inhabitants in Los Angeles, 272,000 of them are Mexicans. New communities spring up in Montebello, Monterrey Park and Pico Rivera. There is discrimination in education, there is police, brutality, and there are attacks on Mexicans by the INS.
1954 - McCarthyism is unleashed to stop social progress made by minorities and working people.
1955 - Lupita Beltran's television show has its premiere. It includes Rita Holguín, Lalo Guerrero and Aura San Juan. Community groups such as the Unity Leagues, CSO, ANMA, and the G.I.Forum become institutions.
1956- 1956-57 Rubén Salazar works in Petaluma for the Santa Rosa Press Democrat. He moves on to the San Francisco News
1959- 1959 Rubén Salazar accepts the opportunity to work for the Los Angeles Times. During his tenure with the Times
1960 - There is a wave of protest and militancy in the whole country. Edward Royball is elected to Congress. There are 2,478,015 people in Los Angeles, 260,000 are Latinos Anglo-Americans begin to flee to Orange County, San Bernardino and Ventura.
1965- 1965 Rubén Salazar’s reporting of U.S. Marine intervention in the Dominican Republic receives high acclaim. As a domestic reporter and columnist, Rubén Salazar's topics are also "firsts": the inferior quality of education, the unemployment, the poor and restricted housing conditions, the full range of urban problems facing Chicanos in Los Angeles. This reporting earns him a State Medal Award for best local news coverage in California
1968 - Thousands of Latino students walk out of 16 schools, protesting educational conditions. The "blowouts" demand bi-lingual and bi-cultural education, the teaching of Mexican-American history, an end to corporal punishment, the hiring of more Latino teachers and administrators, and an end to the tracking system by ethnicity.
There was a general atmosphere of protest (hippies, civil rights, the war in Viet Nam). The students were complaining all over East LA that they were being pushed out, there was racism, unemployment, tracking. Students started talking to each other, realizing they were not alone. They decided to take a survey, which they presented to the Board of Education, demanding Bilingual Education, Mexican-American History, and end to corporal punishment, more Mexican teachers, and above all, respect. The Board threw the survey into the wastebasket. They showed they did not care what Mexicans thought. Resentment built up. The students decided on a massive walkout. The Board raised cries of "outside agitators", implying the students were too stupid to do it themselves. They attacked the students, blaming them for their own (the Board’s) failures. The Board was on the defensive, the students on the offensive. The students formed a united front with all those who could be united. The Board tried to split them up (Divide and Rule). Politicians came down on the side of the students (Royball, Kennedy). Board members then pretended to be sympathetic to the students (good cop bad cop). The Euroamerican population was terrified. The Mexicans were "out of control". The riot police were brought in. The Board then showed its colors, hysterically threatening to suspend students and rescind scholarships. Bobby Kennedy gave support, and the Board had to take it. The parents then became involved, them the whole community (churches, community groups, etc). The Board promised to look into their demands and the students returned to school. Parents and the School Board began meeting to work things out. Then the sheriffs arrested the 13 students organizers in the middle of the night, handcuffed them and indicted them on conspiracy charges. They would get 66 years in prison if sentenced. The protests were a misdemeanor, but by calling it a "conspiracy" they could be charged with a felony. A.L. Wirin and the ACLU appeared to take the case of the 13. The prosecution violated the Constitution. "A demonstration is a poor man’s printing press", that is free speech. The protesters were surveilled, their phones tapped by the FBI. There was COINTELPRO infiltration of the Brown Berets. The struggle changed focus, from better education to getting people out of jail. The east LA groups now had to deal with agents and provocateurs, who tried to get others to engage in violence. There were threats against Sal Castro, the Berets and students, that they were going to jail or would be killed. The rearguard became the front guard, they sat in on the Board of Education, who turned off the air conditioner, etc. They were there 7 days and the Board was ready to negotiate if they ended the sit-in. 35 refused to leave and were arrested. Thanks to the people’s struggle, Sal Castro and the indicted 13 won their struggle.
1970 -The population of Los Angeles is 2,811,801, 545,000 are Latinos. There are 6,938,457 inhabitants in the County, 1,285,000 are Latinos.
"Stranger in One's Land," Rubén Salazar's account of the U.S. Commission on Civil Right's hearing held in San Antonio Texas in December, 1968, appears as a commission publication in May, 1970. This unique report is published for the purpose of stimulating public interest and concern in the problems confronting Mexican Americans.
In 1970, Rubén Salazar is elected Chairman of the Chicano Media Council, is news director of KMEX, a Spanish language TV station in Los Angeles, and is a weekly columnist on Chicano affairs for the Times.
The National Chicano Moratorium is formed to protest the War in Viet Nam. The August 29 demonstration is met with police brutality.
On August 29, 1970, Rubén Salazar is killed by a tear gas projectile fired by L.A. police while covering the Chicano Moratorium, an anti-Viet Nam war demonstration in East Los Angeles
1971 - The Raza Unida Party is formed.
1975 There is a greater movement emphasis on the defense of the undocumented. CASA is founded.
The situation in the country. There is a revolutionary vanguard (Black Panthers, Brown Berets) who, while breaking through the old molds, commit some serious mistakes. Tactics and strategies are confused; the tactics become the strategy itself. As a result of rigid thinking, of the conviction that they are owners of the truth, many organizations keep their original ideas while conditions change around them. Armed struggle becomes the condition for considering an activist a revolutionary. This negates the possibility of working out a concrete policy for the masses according to its needs and level of consciousness. Faced with the needs of the masses (jobs, firings, low salaries, medical care, education, housing) activists offer only one answer; "The solution is revolution." The lack of an alternative option leads to defeat and allows the reactionaries a free hand in installing as never before a reactionary program. In spite of their mistakes, the struggles of the 60s and 70s are a real danger to the ruling class, and they unleash a violent reaction against the revolutionary organizations as well as against the popular movement. The depth of the defeat is measured by the level of the annihilation of the vanguard. The 80s sees the rise of a qualified democracy, which brings about the intensification of the reactionary offensive. The right wing usurps the rhetoric of the left for its own ends. .
1980 -There are 2,065,727 Latinos in Los Angeles County. By the year 2,000 Latinos will be the majority, but will continue to earn less, with fewer educational opportunities, and lack of political power, unless they do something. There has been created a new class of entrepreneurs, professionals, semi-professionals, technicians and actors, but this influence has not benefitted the total Latino community. Middle class Latinos exercise little power in the institutions where they work. They are under the thumb of their Anglo creditors and bosses. While many Mexicans have stopped speaking Spanish, with so many Latinos from Mexico and Central America, the Spanish language has proliferated so that Los Angeles has become a Spanish-speaking city for the first time since 1860. There are Spanish-language book stores, witnesses to a Mexican and Central American public with higher education, professionals fleeing poverty and political terrorism in their countries. There are 5 Spanish-language theaters, among them the bi-lingual Center of Carmen Zapata. There are four television stations and a daily newspaper, plus countless neighborhood papers. Disneyland, Magic Mountain and Knotts Berry Farm are sustained by Latino dollars, and Spanish-language commercials on television attest to the purchasing power of the Latino dollar. There are artists, poets, scholars, photographers, writers and film makers who question in a fundamental way the value of Anglo-American culture. Public institutions, firmly in the hands of the ruling class, deny recognition of the reality; that the presence of the founding Mexicans of Los Angeles has never disappeared in spite of all the attempts of the U.S. government to uproot it, and, stronger and more numerous than ever, has become an inalienable force in the political, economic social and cultural life of Southern California.
1994 Proposition 187, denying health care and education to people suspected of being illegal, passes.
1996 Proposition 209, abolishing affirmative action, passes.
1998 Anglo pundits self-servingly declare that Latinos aren't likely to become voters because of an anti-democratic, Ibero-American heritage.
A controversial billboard near the Arizona border that declares California the "Illegal Immigration State" is taken down Tuesday after threats to destroy the sign by Latino activists who consider it racist.
Heading into the November general election, Latinos appear poised to expand their influence in the state Legislature, while Democrats emerge from Tuesday's primary confident they will retain control of the state Senate and Assembly.
The Latino population is generally healthy because it's young, but it has poor access to care and often lacks insurance.;
In a landmark demonstration of the growing Latino influence in California politics, the four major candidates for governor addressed the hopes and tensions of a changing population Saturday in a forum hosted by the state's two largest Spanish-language media companies.
Harvard Panel Assails Bilingual Measure;
Education: Scholars at a Chicano issues forum oppose dropping native language instruction.;
Joining a political offensive to save bilingual education in California, a group of Harvard University scholars announced its opposition to Proposition 227 during a Chicano issues forum Saturday at U
SAN DIEGO--A Border Patrol agent fatally shot a suspected undocumented immigrant during an attempted arrest Saturday night, authorities said Sunday. The man, identified by Mexican authorities as Oscar Abel Córdoba Vélez, 23, of Guadalajara, was pronounced dead at the scene shortly after the 9 p.m. shooting. The agent was placed on the customary administrative leave while San Diego police and the FBI investigate the shooting.
June Foley, Orange County resident complains:
"As long as the county keeps getting more and more people, I don't see how it could possibly get better," she said. "At the apartment complex I lived in four years ago, I was the only one who spoke English. It's kind of odd to think you're living in the country you were born in and you feel like it's a foreign country."
L.A. County Leads U.S. in Numbers of Latinos, Asians
The estimated Latino population in the county last year was 4,000,642 and composed about 44% of the county's 9,145,219 total population. The non-Latino white population actually decreased 13.9% from 1990, to 3,124,613, about 37% of the population.
: By overwhelming margins, Los Angeles County in 1997 had larger populations of Latinos and Asians than any other county in the nation, according to recent estimates by the U.S. Census Bureau.
The local Latino total dwarfed the nation's second-ranked county in that category, Florida's Dade (home of Miami), which had 1.139 million Latinos, mainly Cubans and other Caribbeans. New York City's five boroughs are treated separately by the Census Bureau, but showed a combined total of 2.021 million Latinos.
County total: +3.1% Latino total: +19.3% Non-Latino white: -13.9%
Black: -1.8% Asian/Pacific +19.5% American Indian: -1.7% Source: U.S. Census Bureau
Beginning of a new era for the Latino community:
Currently eyeing local offices are Antonio Villaraigosa, the speaker of the state Assembly; Richard Polanco, state senator and powerful Sacramento deal maker; Gil Cedillo, labor leader-turned-state Assemblyman; Tony Cardenas, a state Assemblyman considered part of the new generation of Latino politicians, and Xavier Becerra, a Democratic U.S. congressman.
"Why this push to secede?" asked panelist Anton Calleia, a top assistant to former Los Angeles Mayor Tom Bradley. "To make zoning changes easier? Maybe. To deny minorities their share of political power? Maybe and possibly."
Thomas Hogen-Esch, a researcher for the elected charter commission, cited his study which noted that based on figures from the 1990 census, a Valley city would be 58% white, compared with the whole of Los Angeles, which was just 37% white.
Valley VOTE leaders have previously criticized conclusions drawn from that study that secession may be a byproduct of racial division.
"Latinos in the Valley would go from an emerging majority to a clear minority," Hogen-Esch told the audience. "And they would [compromise] relations with other Latinos on the other side of the hill."
Proposition 227, putting and end to bilingual education, passes.
Proposition 226, curtailing the power of the unions, fails.


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