Fullerton, California

From Academic Kids

Fullerton is a city located in northern Orange County, California, USA. As of the 2000 census, the city had a total population of 126,003.

It was founded in 1887 by George and Edward Amerige and named for George H. Fullerton, who secured the land on behalf of the Atchison, Topeka and Santa Fe Railway. Historically it was a center of agriculture, notably groves of Valencia oranges and other citrus crops; petroleum extraction; transportation; and manufacturing. It is home to several educational institutions, notably the California State University, Fullerton (CSUF).

Contents

History

This section is drawn substantially from Oranges and Oil (http://www.ci.fullerton.ca.us/facts/history.html), by Fullerton Heritage

Evidence of prehistoric habitation is present in Ralph B. Clark Regional Park in the northwest of the city. Europeans first passed through the area in 1769 when Gaspar de Portola led an expedition north to establish Mission San Gabriel Arcangel, after whom the local Native American population were dubbed the Gabrieliņos. The land later became part of Rancho San Juan Cajon de Santa Ana, granted to Juan Pacifico Ontiveros, a Spanish soldier.

Ontiveros began to sell parcels of the Rancho to settlers flooding California in the aftermath of the 1849 Gold Rush, including Massachusetts native Abel Stearns. In the 1860s, Stearns sold in turn to Domingo Bastanchury, a Basque shepherd.

In 1886 while in the area on a duck hunting vacation, Malden, Massachusetts brothers George and Edward Amerige, heard rumors that the California Central Railroad, a subsidiary of the Santa Fe Railway, was looking for land. Sensing opportunity, they arranged to buy 430 acres (1.7 km²) north of Anaheim for approximately $68,000.

They then began negotiations with George H. Fullerton, president of the Pacific Land and Improvement Company, also a Santa Fe subsidiary. They offered free right-of-way and half interest in the land to the railroad if Fullerton's survey were revised to include the proposed town site, and on July 5, 1887 Edward Amerige formally staked his claim at what is now the intersection of Harbor Boulevard and Commonwealth Avenue.

In 1894 Charles Chapman, a retired Chicago publisher and a descendant of John "Johnny Appleseed" Chapman, purchased an orange orchard in eastern Fullerton. The Valencia variety of oranges he promoted from his Santa Ysabel Ranch, well suited to the local climate, proved a boon to producers; Fullerton boasted more orange groves than any other municipality in the United States. Cultivation of walnuts and avocados also flourished, and the Western railroad town became an agricultural center.

In 1904, Fullerton incorporated.

In 1913, community college Fullerton College was established at its present location at Chapman Avenue and Lemon Street.

Drilling for petroleum also began in the late 1800s and fueled the first real boom, peaking in the 1920s. Construction reflected the vogue for Spanish Colonial and Italian Renaissance-inspired architecture, as in the historic Fox Fullerton Theatre (erected 1925); the home of Walter and Adella Muckenthaler, designed by Frank Benchley (erected 1924); and the city's chief landmark, the Plummer Auditorium and clock tower (erected 1930).

Significant public works projects were constructed during this period, including the conversion of a southwestern sewer farm into Fullerton Municipal Airport at the behest of Placentia ranchers and aviators William and Robert Dowling in 1927.

In 1932, Val Vita Food Products (later Hunt Wesson and today part of ConAgra Foods, Inc.) began operating a citrus juice plant in western Fullerton. By 1941 it had become the largest food processing company in the US.

Through the mid-1900s the economy shifted toward manufacturing; southeastern Fullerton became an industrial center and the city became a producer not only of canned foods, but also of aerospace equipment, electrical and electronic components, navigation systems, and laboratory instruments.

In 1949 Dick Riedel and Bill Barris piloted the Sunkist Lady, a modified Aeronca 11 Chief, out of the Fullerton airport to set an endurance flight record of 1,008 hours and 2 minutes. This record remained unbroken until the Voyager journey in 1986.

Fullerton's population soared after World War II as veterans migrated to California, and in particular after the construction of Interstate 5 and development in neighboring Anaheim.

In 1957, the California State Legislature authorized Orange County State College, which began operating out of Fullerton high schools in 1959. In 1963, it moved to its present campus on State College Boulevard and was redesignated California State College at Fullerton. Other institutions followed, earning Fullerton a reputation as an "Education City."

In 1965, Harold Muckenthaler donated his family home to the city for use as a cultural center.

In 1979, the Fullerton Arboretum, a 26-acre (105,000 m²) botanical garden, opened in the northeastern part of the city.

Manufacturing growth leveled off as ever-soaring property prices, increasing environmental regulation, traffic, and other pressures increased. By the late 20th century the city had lost much of its rural character in favor of suburban housing tracts and shopping centers.

Recent history

The first years of the 21st century have seen several political issues played out against a backdrop of class division (between the more affluent northern and western parts of the city and the southern portion of the city, which borders Anaheim), rapidly diminishing supplies of undeveloped land, and demographic changes (including the influx of Korean, Latino, and Vietnamese immigrants into an area previously dominated by Caucasians). A long strike by grocery workers in 2004 further divided the city along class lines.

As in many cities, growth and development are contentious issues. In the 1990's, the downtown commercial district had become economically depressed, and was known mainly for being an area of sleepy antique stores and small shops. A symbol of downtown's problems was the Fox Theater, a local landmark, which had fallen into disrepair. As of November 2004, a fundraising drive has accumulated sufficient funds to buy the theater, but not yet enough money to restore it. During this same period, the downtown area, especially south of Commonwealth Avenue, has become more of a busy entertainment district, described by the OC Weekly as Bourbon Street West. In less than five years, some 30 businesses that sell alcohol have opened, making the downtown area much more active at night. With the festive atmosphere have come problems such as public drunkenness, fights and a shortage of parking; a police task force last year has addressed some of these problems.

There is a proposal to develop the Coyote Hills area, the last undeveloped area in the city. This controversial issue has pitted local environmentalists and slow-growth activists (who argue that the city should seek state funding to buy the area and make into a park) against the pro-business and pro-growth City Council. There are also plans to build approximately 300 condominiums or apartments downtown, leading to more density.

The 293-acre Hughes Ground Systems campus in western Fullerton was redeveloped into a major new residential and commercial district, called Amerige Heights in 2001-2004. This development was accompanied by extreme shifts in neighborhood property values, first dropping precipitously as the former Hughes employees sold their houses, and then rising rapidly as part of a general increase in real estate values throughout Orange County.

Geography

Fullerton is located at 33°52'48" North, 117°55'43" West (33.879914, -117.928749)Template:GR. It is approximately 25 miles southeast of downtown Los Angeles, and approximately 11 miles north-northwest of Santa Ana, the county seat. The city has a mean elevation of 150 feet and lies approximately 11 miles northeast of the Pacific Ocean straight-line distance. It has a Mediterranean climate, with a mean temperature of 62.2 degrees Fahrenheit.

According to the United States Census Bureau, the city has a total area of 57.6 km² (22.2 mi²). 57.5 km² (22.2 mi²) of it is land and 0.1 km² (0.04 mi²) of it is water. The total area is 0.14% water.

The flat downtown area is laid out in a grid plan centered at the intersection of Harbor Boulevard and Commonwealth Avenue. After recent renewal and beautification projects, it has attracted specialty stores, coffee shops, and restaurants, and has uncharacteristically retained much of its downtown character. Southeastern Fullerton is historically the industrial sector, and is home to small manufacturing, particularly east of Raymond Street and south of Commonwealth.

The hilly northern and western parts of Fullerton were for most of its history groves of citrus trees, open scrubland, and oil fields. While equestrian trails and many old estates endure along Bastanchury Road, the meandering roads through these areas today mostly connect a succession of housing tract subdivisions and commercial developments. North-central and northwestern Fullerton is broadly referred to as Coyote Hills, while the name Sunny Hills refers to the adjacent lands to the south and west. A proposed housing development in West Coyote Hills, a plot of open space west and north of Euclid and Rosecrans Avenues, has been the subject of community opposition.

Government and politics

Fullerton is a general law city with a council-manager government system. Legislative authority is vested in a City Council of five non-partisan members who serve four-year staggered terms, who elect a chair who serves as mayor but hire a professional city manager for day-to-day operations. All Council seats are elected at large. Elections are held every two years and are consolidated with the statewide general elections held in November of even numbered years.

As of July 2004 there were 60,927 registered voters in the city:

Fullerton has historically favored conservative Republican in state and federal elections, sending native William_E._Dannemeyer to seven terms in the United States House of Representatives.

Education

Fullerton is home to several regionally significant educational and cultural institutions.

California State University, Fullerton, commonly Cal State Fullerton or CSUF was first established in 1957 as Orange County State College. The twelfth member of the California State University system, its main campus is located on 236 acres (1 km²) of a former orange grove in northeast Fullerton near California State Route 57 and Nutwood Avenue; there are six branch campuses. In the spring quarter of 2004, 32,592 students were enrolled in 104 undergraduate and graduate degree programs.

CSUF primarily serves commuter students. Outside of the area it is best known for its winning collegiate baseball program. In 2004 the CSUF Titans won their fourth NCAA Division I World Series.

Fullerton College is a two-year community college, the oldest in continuous operation in California. Part of the North Orange County Community College District, it is situated on a 63 acre (255,000 m²) campus adjacent to Fullerton Union High School.

Other institutions of higher education in Fullerton include Western State University College of Law, Hope International University, and Southern California College of Optometry.

The city also prides itself on its public schools, including Sunny Hills High School and science magnet school Troy High School.

Culture and recreation

Fullerton is home to a vibrant music scene. It was a center for the Orange County hardcore punk music, scene, producing acts such as The Adolescents, Agent Orange, Social Distortion, and Thrice. Gwen Stefani, lead vocalist of the alternative rock group No Doubt, was a student at CSUF and the group performed there regularly. Other popular groups from the area include The Offspring and Lit.

Contributing greatly to Fullerton's musical heritage was the Fender musical instrument company, whose products such as the Stratocaster and Telecaster electric guitars, Precision Bass bass guitar, and Twin Reverb guitar amplifier revolutionized the music business and contributed greatly to the development of rock and roll. (A list of notable rock performers who did not use a Fender product at some point in their careers would be very short.) Leo Fender sold the company to CBS in 1964; production continued in the Fullerton plant until 1985, when the then-ruined company was sold to a group of private investors. (It was later reconstituted as Fender Musical Instrument Corporation, with its major production facilities in neighboring Corona, California and across the US-Mexico border in Ensenada, Baja California, and its headquarters in Scottsdale, Arizona.) In 1980, Fender and his original partner George Fullerton (relation to the Fullerton founder of the same name unknown) reunited and started a new company, G&L (George and Leo) Guitars, which currently occupies the old Fender factory in Fullerton.

The Muckenthaler Cultural Center on Malvern Avenue near Euclid Avenue houses a museum, art galleries, two symphony orchestras, and a theater group.

The Fullerton Museum Center is a multidisciplinary exhibit space housed in the old Carnegie Library downtown.

The Fullerton Civil Light Opera, one of the largest theatre companies in Southern California, is based at the Plummer Auditorium.

Fullerton maintains 45 city parks and is home to the Craig Regional Park and Ralph B. Clark Regional Park. The Fullerton Arboretum comprises 26 acres (105,000 m²) of sculpted gardens and unusual plants in northeastern Fullerton. Additionally the city features approximately 200 acres (0.8 km²) of recreational land in the Brea Dam Recreational Area, plus an equestrian center and trails, two golf courses, and the Janet Evans Swim Complex.

Demographics

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As of the censusTemplate:GR of 2000, there are 126,003 people, 43,609 households, and 29,610 families residing in the city. The population density is 2,191.4/km² (5,675.9/mi²). There are 44,771 housing units at an average density of 778.7/km² (2,016.7/mi²). The racial makeup of the city is 61.89% White, 2.27% Black or African American, 0.69% Native American, 16.08% Asian, 0.23% Pacific Islander, 14.81% from other races, and 4.03% from two or more races. 30.17% of the population is Hispanic or Latino of any race.

There are 43,609 households out of which 33.0% have children under the age of 18 living with them, 51.8% are married couples living together, 11.0% have a female householder with no husband present, and 32.1% are non-families. 23.5% of all households are made up of individuals and 7.3% have someone living alone who is 65 years of age or older. The average household size is 2.83 and the average family size is 3.37.

In the city the population is spread out with 25.1% under the age of 18, 11.5% from 18 to 24, 32.3% from 25 to 44, 19.8% from 45 to 64, and 11.3% who are 65 years of age or older. The median age is 33 years. For every 100 females there are 97.7 males. For every 100 females age 18 and over, there are 96.1 males.

The median income for a household in the city is $50,269, and the median income for a family is $57,345. Males have a median income of $40,674 versus $31,677 for females. The per capita income for the city is $23,370. 11.4% of the population and 8.0% of families are below the poverty line. Out of the total population, 13.6% of those under the age of 18 and 5.4% of those 65 and older are living below the poverty line.

Transportation

Inasmuch Fullerton owes its existence to the railroad, the city is still bisected by the Burlington Northern Santa Fe Railway, upon whose tracks Amtrak intercity and Metrolink commuter rail services run.

The Fullerton Train Station is located downtown at the Fullerton Transportation Center, which also serves as a major bus depot for the Orange County Transportation Authority (OCTA).

Fullerton is crossed by three major freeways. California State Route 91, the Riverside Freeway, runs east-to-west down the length of the city south of Orangethorpe Avenue. It intersects with Interstate 5, the Santa Ana Freeway, in the west near Magnolia Avenue and with California State Route 57, the Orange Freeway, in the east near State College Boulevard.

The Fullerton Municipal Airport, the only general aviation airport remaining in Orange County, is located in the southwest of the city.

Related links

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