Glendale, CaliforniaWednesday, March 2, 2022
Glendale is a city in the San Fernando Valley and Verdugo Mountains regions of Los Angeles County, California.
As of the 2020 U.S. Census the population was 196,543, up from 191,719 as of the 2010 census, making it the fourth-largest city in Los Angeles County and the 24th-largest city in California. It is located about 10 miles (16 km) north of downtown Los Angeles.
Glendale lies in the Verdugo Mountains, and is a suburb in the Los Angeles metropolitan area. The city is bordered to the northwest by the Sun Valley and Tujunga neighborhoods of Los Angeles; to the northeast by La Cañada Flintridge and the unincorporated area of La Crescenta; to the west by Burbank and Griffith Park; to the east by Eagle Rock and Pasadena; to the south by the Atwater Village neighborhood of Los Angeles; and to the southeast by Glassell Park neighborhood of Los Angeles. The Golden State, Ventura, Glendale, and Foothill freeways run through the city.
The area was long inhabited by the Tongva people (or "People of the Earth"), who were later renamed the Gabrieleños by the Spanish missionaries, after the nearby Mission San Gabriel Arcángel.
In 1798, José María Verdugo, a corporal in the Spanish army from Baja California, received the Rancho San Rafael from Governor Diego de Borica, formalizing his possession and use of land on which he had been grazing livestock and farming since 1784. Rancho San Rafael was a Spanish concession, of which 25 were made in California. Unlike the later Mexican land grants, the concessions were similar to grazing permits, with the title remaining with the Spanish crown.
In 1860, his grandson Teodoro Verdugo built the Catalina Verdugo Adobe, which is the oldest building in Glendale. The property is the location of the Oak of Peace, where early Californio leaders including Pio Pico met in 1847 and decided to surrender to Lieutenant Colonel John C. Frémont.
Verdugo's descendants sold the ranch in various parcels, some of which are included in present-day Atwater Village, Eagle Rock, and Highland Park neighborhoods of Los Angeles.
In 1884, residents gathered to form a townsite and chose the name "Glendale". It was bounded by First Street (now Lexington Drive) on the north, Fifth Street (now Harvard Street) on the south, Central Avenue on the west, and the Childs Tract on the east. Residents to the southwest formed "Tropico" in 1887.
The Pacific Electric Railway brought streetcar service in 1904.
Glendale incorporated in 1906, and annexed Tropico 12 years later. An important civic booster of the era was Leslie Coombs Brand (1859–1925), who built an estate in 1904 called El Miradero, featuring an eye-catching mansion, the architecture of which combined characteristics of Spanish, Moorish, and Indian styles, copied from the East Indian Pavilion at the 1893 World's Columbian Exposition held in Chicago, which he visited. Brand loved to fly, and built a private airstrip in 1919 and hosted "fly-in" parties, providing a direct link to the soon-to-be-built nearby Grand Central Airport. The grounds of El Miradero are now city-owned Brand Park and the mansion is the Brand Library, according to the terms of his will. Brand partnered with Henry E. Huntington to bring the Pacific Electric Railway, or the "Red Cars", to the area. Today, he is memorialized by one of the city's main thoroughfares, Brand Boulevard.
The city's population rose from 13,756 in 1920 to 62,736 in 1930. The Forest Lawn Cemetery opened in 1906 and was renamed Forest Lawn Memorial-Park in 1917. Pioneering endocrinologist and entrepreneur Henry R. Harrower opened his clinic in Glendale in 1920, which for many years was the largest business in the city. The American Green Cross, an early conservation and tree preservation society, was formed in 1926 (it disbanded three years later and the current organization of that name is unrelated).
Grand Central Airport was the departure point for the first commercial west-to-east transcontinental flight flown by Charles Lindbergh.
Glendale has one of the largest communities of Armenian descent in the United States.
Armenian families have lived in the city since the 1920s, but the surge in immigration escalated in the 1970s. Armenian Americans are well integrated into the city, with many businesses, several Armenian schools, and ethnic/cultural organizations serving this ethnic group. Most of the Armenians in Glendale arrived in the past two decades. The city of Glendale is home to one of the largest Armenian communities outside of Armenia.
Beginning in the late 1980s, with assistance from family and friends already there, Armenians from the former Soviet Union began arriving. In the Glendale Unified School District, by 1988, along with students from the Middle East, they had become the largest ethnic group in the public schools, now having a larger number than the Latinos. Glendale became the municipality with the largest number of ethnic Armenians outside of Yerevan, Armenia. In 2014, a Glendale Police Department spokesperson, stated, "In five to eight years, the [Armenian] community went from a few thousand to about 40,000."Levon Marashlian, an instructor of Armenian history at Glendale College, stated that in the early 1990s Glendale's Armenian community became the largest in the Los Angeles metropolitan area, surpassing the Armenian community of Hollywood. Alice Petrossian, the GUSD director of intercultural education, stated that Burbank lies within the middle of other Armenian communities, so it attracted Armenians. There are also a great number of Armenian immigrants from Iran who, due to the religious restrictions and lifestyle limitations of the Islamic government, immigrated to the US, many to Glendale since it was where their relatives resided.
A new headquarters of the Armenian National Committee/Western Region opened in 1994. By 1999, about 25% of the population spoke Armenian and there were many Armenian businesses. By 2005 the Armenian population was 40% of the total population.
According to the United States 2000 Census, Glendale is home to 65,343 Armenian Americans (making up 34.1% of the total population), increasing from 1990 when there were 31,402 ArmenianAmericans in the city. As of 2005, one-third of Los Angeles' estimated 153,000 Armenians (or 51,000, around a quarter of Glendale's 205,000 residents) lived in Glendale. At that time, Armenians held a majority on the Glendale city council, and it had done so since that year.
As of March 2018, four of the five members of Glendale's city council are of Armenian descent: Mayor Vartan Gharapetian and councilmembers Zareh Sinanyan (mayor from 2014 to 2015), Ara Najarian (mayor from 2007 to 2008, 2010 to 2011, and 2015 to 2016), and Vrej Agajanian. Former Armenian American mayors of Glendale include Larry Zarian, Bob Yousefian, and Rafi Manoukian.
Singer Serj Tankian and bassist Shavo Odadjian, members of the Armenian American rock band System of a Down, were based in Glendale at the time of formation.
The Cathedral of Saint Gregory the Illuminator, which is the seat of North American diocese of the Armenian Catholic Church, is located in Glendale. The Bishop of the Diocese, Rt. Rev. Mikaël Antoine Mouradian, is also resident in Glendale.