The Origin of the Name Los Angeles

The city of Los Angeles has a long and fascinating history, and its name is no exception. The city was originally named The People of the Queen of Los Angeles, which translates as “The City of Our Lady, the Queen of the Angels”, on September 4, 1781.This name was derived from Spanish on a river called: The Town of Our Lady of the Angels of Porciúncula. The most obvious origin is a direct translation of Los Angeles, which in Spanish means “Los Angeles”. Historians have debated the exact name given to Los Angeles when its Spanish founders formed it in September.

It is known that the area was originally home to Native American tribes, and the first Europeans passed through Los Angeles during the 16th century. An expedition sent by the viceroy of New Spain claimed the area in what is now Southern California for the Spanish empire. The words “the Queen” or “the queen” are an interpretation that emerged long after the chronicler of the Portola Expedition, Juan Crespi, wrote about a stop on July 31, 1769, next to the Los Angeles River. The bronze plaque in the Plaza on Olvera Street, below the statue of the Spanish king Charles III, who ordered “the founding of The People of the Queen of the Angels in 1781” is correct.

Father Francisco Palou described how the first settlers founded the future “city of Our Lady of the Angels” on the banks of a river called Porciúncula. The Santa Monica Mountains cross Los Angeles and separate it into two parts: The San Fernando Valley to the north and the Los Angeles Basin to the south. Crespi named this river “in honor of Our Lady of the Angels of the Portiuncula”, a title derived from an upcoming Franciscan religious celebration. The 19th and 20th centuries gave Los Angeles countless nicknames, ranging from “The Land of Eternal Spring” to “The Wonderful City of the United States” and home to “Sunkist Skies of Glory”.

The main village for Native Americans was Yaangva, which flourished on the banks of what is now known as the Los Angeles River before it emptied into the Pacific Ocean. Today, Los Angeles is home to many movie stars and some of America's most important rock bands. Grants and donations from historical societies and book lovers have helped to print books about Los Angeles' history on durable acid-free paper and distribute them free to colleges, universities and public libraries.

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