Rancho Cucamonga was a 13,045-acre (52.79 km2) Mexican land grant in present day San Bernardino County, California given in 1839 to dedicated soldier, smuggler and politician, Tiburcio Tapia by Mexican governor Juan Bautista Alvarado.
The Mission Gabriel established the Rancho Cucamonga as a site for grazing their cattle. In 1839, the rancho was granted by the Mexican governor of California to Tiburcio Tapia, a wealthy Los Angeles merchant. Tapia transferred his cattle to Cucamonga and built a fort-like adobe house on Red Hill. The rancho extended easterly from San Antonio Creek to what is now Turner Avenue (Hermosa), and from today's Eighth Street to the mountains.
The Cucamonga Rancho was sold in 1858 to John Rains by Tapia's daughter, Maria Merced Tapia de Prudhomme, and her husband Leon Victor Prudhomme.
Rains in 1856 married Maria Merced Williams, the daughter of Rancho Santa Ana del Chino owner Isaac Williams and granddaughter of Antonio Maria Lugo, owner of Rancho San Bernardino. Maria was thus a wealthy heiress, and Rains invested in three ranchos and the Bella Union Hotel in Los Angeles. John Rains was murdered in 1862. Maria Merced married José Carrillo in 1864. She had nine children in all: five with Rains, and four with Carrillo. Isaias W. Hellman, a Los Angeles banker, acquired Rancho Cucamonga at a sheriff’s sale in 1871.
Rancho Cucamonga is made up of Cucamonga, Etiwanda, and Alta Loma. Sometimes these areas will be referred to as independent and sometimes the three areas will be lumped together under the umbrella of "Rancho Cucamonga." Locals may refer to the whole area as just "Cucamonga" or, more commonly, just "Rancho."
There are several ways to get in to Rancho Cucamonga. If you are driving, the east and west highways inclulde Route 66 (here named Foothill Blvd) and Baseline. Most of the main north and south bound streets run several cities south, on up to the base of the San Gabriel mountains. Interstate 15 runs north and south along the eastern border, I-10 runs east-west on the south side and the 210 freeway passes through northern Rancho Cucamonga, also known as Alta Loma.
There is Ontario Airport (ONT), which is located just south of Rancho Cucamonga. Burbank Airport, known as Bob Hope Airport (BUR), is located about 52 miles west.
The MertoLink passes through Rancho Cucamonga from San Bernardino to Los Angeles.
The Omnibus system has regular hours and routes through most of the city.
There is a bike/pedestrian path that passes through much of the town. Much of the trail is paved and painted and fairly well maintained. If followed to its extremes, this path can take you from the western side to the eastern and back.
Throughout the summer the city of Rancho Cucamonga offers free
movies in public parks. The movies start around sundown and are
sometimes preceded by a performance by a local band. The locations
and times have been known to change. Check local websites for most
current times and venues.
There are many parks scattered throughout the city. The parks usually contain the usual playground-type equipment. Some parks have larger sporting arenas. Redhill Park, at Carnelian and Baseline, has multiple sports fields, an ampitheater, and a man-made lake being the home to ducks and turtles.
The Victoria Gardens Mall is an outdoor mall offering the usual shopping opportunities (Forever 21, Macy's, Lids, etc.), an Edward's Cinemas, and a large Bass Pro Shop. Also included is the usual mall food court in addition to some sit-down dining locations (California Pizza Kitchen, Johnny Rockets, and The Cheesecake Factory, to name a few).
The stretch of Foothill Blvd. through Rancho Cucamonga has most of the big retail stores you would want. From Best Buy to Target to The Men's Warehouse, they're all here.
Many "mom and pop" stores can be found through Rancho Cucamonga. Dr. Strange Records, for example, can be found here with a large selection of punk music that could be hard to find offline.
|Routes through Rancho Cucamonga|
|Los Angeles ← Ontario ←||W E||→ Fontana → San Bernardino|
|Barstow ← Victorville ←||N S||→ Ontario → San Diego|
|Santa Monica ← Upland ←||W E||→ Fontana → Barstow|
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