Situated east of Los Angeles within the San Gabriel Valley, El Monte is a city in Los Angeles County, state of California. After the turn of the century during the year 2000, the industrial, residential and commercial city had a population of roughly 115,000. In the year 2002, it was ranked the 44th biggest city in the state of California and the 191st biggest city in the U.S. Historically, it is referred to as "The End of the Santa Fe Trail."
The city of El Monte was at first an island within the center of the San Gabriel Valley. The island is about 7 miles long and 4 miles wide. The name El Monte was not officially named after a mountain like some do believe. El Monte actually means 'the wooded place' or 'meadow or marsh'. The city was named by Spanish soldiers and missionaries who stopped here in between 1770 and 1830. The island was situated between two rivers and was richly abundant in wispy willows, cattails, and alders, as well as watercress and wild grapefruit. In the 1850's, when the state was organized into more organized townships, the State Legislature named it the El Monte Township. The name didn't stick and fast reverted to simply El Monte.
According to the 2009 Comprehensive Annual Financial Report, the top employers in the city comprise: Wells Fargo, which hires 1,800 people, El Monte Union High School District, that employs 1,742 people, Mountain View Elementary School District, that employs 1,007 people, Vons, which hires 736 people, Longo Toyota-Lexus, that employs 600 individuals, City of El Monte, that employs 526 individuals, Driftwood Dairy, Cathay Bank and M.C. Gill Corporation, all of who each hires 250 individuals.