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THE HISTORY

Westminster was founded by Presbyterian Rev. Lemuel Webber in 1870. Now, over 100 years later, the Asian American community contribute largely to the city with a substantial number of businesses. The area, now recognized as "Little Saigon" has the largest concentration of Vietnamese in the United States. This 1.5-mile stretch along Bolsa Avenue of Asian-owned restaurants and shops, has been designated by city officials as an official tourist attraction.

In the 1930s, residents tried to stay afloat during the Depression, and the 1933 Long Beach earthquake and flood hit the area. During World War II, several orange groves and lima-bean fields were supplanted by shipyards and aircraft factories where defense workers from the Midwest came to work - and stayed, according historical accounts.

Residents voted in incorporate in 1957 as a bedroom community to the aerospace, industrial and commercial centers of Los Angeles. By 1970, the city's population had nearly quadrupled from 16,000 in 1957 to 60,000.

In the 1970s, Westminster Mall was built, adding to the city's financial base. Their motto is "The City of Progress Built on Pride."

Historical Site:

McCoy-Hare House - Corner of Beach Blvd. and Hazard Ave.
The board-and-batten house was built in 1874 as a drugstore by Dr. James McCoy, first physician in Westminster. It was the home of educator Marie Hare from 1912 to 1974, and was restored in 1976.

 
 

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