Welcome to the City that is home to the birthplace of modern theme parks. Before Walt Disney picked out a plot of land to forever brand his name in the world, the land now known as Anaheim had a different story.
The Acjachemen Nation were the original native people who lived on the land. Natives had lived in California for over 17,000 thousand years before Europeans arrived.
The Spaniards first invaded the area in 1776, decimating and enslaving the native population. And then Mexico took it over after winning its independence from Spain in 1821 and continued the policies already in place by the Spaniards.
Colonials from the US armed with the very controversial ideology of Manifest Destiny began taking over parts of it as early as 1841, until the US then finally took the whole of California in 1848 after it won the Mexican-American War in 1848.
In 1857, a group of German colonials took over and settled 1,165 acres of land in what is now known as Orange County and called it Anaheim (German for “home by the Santa Ana River”).
It stayed mostly rural until Walt Disney chose it to be the location of his ultimate theme park in 1955. Disneyland changed everything for Anaheim and Orange County in general.
Anaheim soon turned into a city with hotels, convention centers, sports teams, industry and economic opportunity for people who could market to the masses who visited Disney, Knott’s Berry Farm and other attractions in the area.
Anaheim is so large it splits into two sections: Anaheim and Anaheim Hills. Anaheim Hills is largely a purely residential area nestled in beautiful rolling hills with incredible views. The city of Anaheim is mixed residential with commercial giving those who live there the ability to work and play.
The city is also home to the some of the most amazing food from all over the world and diverse communities that enrich every corner of it. Anaheim today has beyond just being a home by the Santa Ana River as the Germans first named it. It has become a metropolis offering so much more.