Great Value for Beverly Hills Landlords
Gaspar de Portolá arrived in the area that would later become Beverly Hills on August 3, 1769, travelling along native trails which followed the present-day route of Wilshire Boulevard.
The area was settled by Maria Rita Quinteros de Valdez and her husband in 1828. They called their 4,500 acres (18 km2) of property the Rancho Rodeo de las Aguas. In 1854, she sold the ranch to Benjamin Davis Wilson (1811–1878) and Henry Hancock (1822–1883). By the 1880s, the ranch had been subdivided into parcels of 75 acres (0.30 km2) and was being rapidly bought up by anglos from Los Angeles and the East coast.
Henry Hammel and Andrew H. Denker acquired most of it and used it for farming lima beans. At this point, the area was known as the Hammel and Denker Ranch. By 1888, Denker and Hammel were planning to build a town called Morocco on their holdings.
In 1900, Burton E. Green, Charles A. Canfield, Max Whittier, Frank H. Buck, Henry E. Huntington, William G. Kerckhoff, William F. Herrin, W.S. Porter, and Frank H. Balch, formed the Amalgamated Oil Company, bought the Hammel and Denker ranch, and began looking for oil. They did not find enough to exploit commercially by the standards of the time, though. In 1906, therefore, they reorganized as the Rodeo Land and Water Company, renamed the property "Beverly Hills," subdivided it, and began selling lots. The development was named "Beverly Hills" after Beverly Farms in Beverly, Massachusetts and because of the hills in the area. The first house in the subdivision was built in 1907, although sales remained slow.
Beverly Hills was one of many all-white planned communities started in the Los Angeles area around this time. Restrictive covenants prohibited non-whites from owning or renting property unless they were employed as servants by white residents.:57 It was also forbidden to sell or rent property to Jews in Beverly Hills.