The El Monte Chamber of Commerce does not have to feel glum that the community is not celebrating its centennial this year.
In his authoritative book "The Cattle on a Thousand Hills," Robert Glass Cleland states the town was founded in 1851.
Cleland states the area soon became known as one of the most productive agricultural regions in the state. He adds: "The settlers, usually spoken of as the 'Monte Boys,' were Southern Democrats of the fire-eating type, who brought with them the turbulent traditions of independent spirit of the Texan frontier."
Cleland observes that by the end of the Civil War in 1865, with the exception of Los Angeles, El Monte was the only important settlement in the county.
Clearly, El Monte has a very important place in the history of Southern California, and it is entitled to celebrate far more than a centennial.