History of Manhattan Beach, CA

By  Published Sep 22nd, 2016



Manhattan Beach has a history dating back 141 years when the land was hilly and sandy. Today, the city and its historic structures, including the Manhattan Jewish Center are major attractions for locals and visitors across the world. Since 1950, the population had more than doubled by 2010. The city is filled with beautiful natural beauty and plenty of things to do for adults and families with children.

Before the establishment of the town, the area featured sandy hills and slopes, which was a 10-mile ocean frontage of Rancho Sausal Redondo. The property was owned by the Avila family and unpopulated from 1875 through 1876. Between 1877 and 1900, two public transportation systems were constructed, which was the beginning of the town’s development.

In 1901, John Merrill purchased the south side of the town, which he called Manhattan; and George Peck owned the north end and called it Shore Acres. The two compromised on the name by tossing a coin and Manhattan won the toss. After Merrill bought the south side, he built the first historic structure, a small building used for city offices. Four years later, a beach cottage was constructed, which is presently named The Manhattan Beach Historical Society Beach Cottage.

That was just the beginning! The town was officially incorporated in 1912 and after World War II attracted hundreds of visitors and servicemen. By 1950, the population received significant growth, reaching over 35,000 thousand people. The historical city is home and former home to famous individuals, including Darren Aronofsky, Jack Kirby, and Stephen J. Solarz.

The city is also home to a gorgeous beach, fine and casual restaurants, hotels, parks, shopping centers, and museums. Enjoy a day on the beach swimming, boat touring, and water sporting. Restaurants are plentiful, with more than 180 offering American, Italian, Chinese, French, Mexican, and other cultural cuisines. For adult night-life activities, visit one or more of the bars and clubs, such as the Schooner Bar & Grill and The Castle Sports Bar & Grill. The major attractions in Manhattan Beach appeal to thousands of tourists yearly.