Our purpose as a non-profit organization is to provide our members with the best business retention programs available from training seminars, legislative action, import/export documents, marketing, advertising, networking and more.
About the Chamber
Members have made vital connections that have propelled them forward in business and life. Others have gained valuable new insights into business processes. Networking works, and this is the place to do it. If you make just one life-long customer in your first year of belonging to the Chamber, your membership has more than paid for itself.
The Montebello Chamber of Commerce is an association of business people dedicated to promoting and serving the economic, civic and cultural welfare of the City of Montebello. Our purpose as a non-profit organization is to provide our members with the best business retention programs available from training seminars, legislative action, import/export documents, marketing, advertising, networking and more.
The colorful and romantic history of Montebello identified with the days of the Franciscan Missionaries, Fathers Angel Somera and Pedro Cambon, who, on September 9, 1771, established the original San Gabriel Mission near where San Gabriel Boulevard now crosses the Rio Hondo River.The Mission was the third of a chain of 21 to be established under the direction of Father Junipero Serra. The Mission flourished under hardship, and heavy rains drove the founding fathers to the permanent site in San Gabriel in 1776.The City of Montebello was founded on a part of Rancho San Antonio, Rancho La Merced, and Rancho Paso de Bartolo. Here on the banks of the Rio Hondo was staged the last armed conflict with Mexico for possession of California – the Battle of the Rio San Gabriel on January 8, 1847. Just north of the intersection of La Merced and Lincoln Avenue stands the old Juan Matias Sanchez Adobe in the heart of the old La Merced Rancho. Silently the old adobe stood until restored in recent years to its original splendor.Soon after the Civil War, An Italian by the name of Alessandro Repetto built his ranch house on the hill overlooking his land in all directions about a half-mile north of where Garfield Avenue crosses the Pomona Freeway. Repetto never married and, when he died in 1885, his brother Antonio sold his inheritance to a group well known business men in the Los Angeles financial circles, such as Harris Newmark, Kaspar Cohn, John D. Bicknell, Stephen M. White, and I.W. Heliman for $60,000 or about $12 per acre.It was out of the Newmark and Cohn share of 1,200 acres that Montebello had its beginning in May 1899. A town site of forty acres bounded by First Street on the east, the middle of Fifth Street on the west, the middle of Cleveland on the north and the middle of Los Angeles Avenue on the south was given the name of Newmark, after the Newmark family. The remainder of the tract was named Montebello, meaning beautiful hills in Italian, and at the suggestion of William Mulholland was divided into five-acre plots. It was Mulholland who developed our water system. In 1900 it was incorporated as the Montebello Land & Water Company.Early ads in Los Angeles newspapers boasted the Montebello tract as having an ideal climate, productive soil, and abundance of water and as being only fifteen minutes from downtown Los Angles via the Salt Lake steam train.Montebello from the beginning was destined to be an agricultural community. From the turn of the century and through the 1920’s, she was famed for her fields of flowers, vegetables, berries and fruits. In 1912, the Chamber Of Commerce advertised “Come to Montebello – come where the flowers grow.” That same year the Chamber of Commerce and the Montebello Woman’s Club sponsored Montebello’s first flower show in the high school auditorium.The Montebello – El Carmel (South Montebello) Improvement Association, the predecessor of the Montebello Chamber of Commerce, functioned from September 1907 to April 1912. Its purpose was “to improve and beautify the community.” Some of its achievements were: Whittier Boulevard was paved, trees planted on the streets, purchased and operated a street grader, laid the groundwork and established the first high school, attempted to have the name of Newmark dropped and to have the entire area incorporated as Montebello. They met twice a month and the dues were $.25 quarterly.The Montebello Chamber Of Commerce had its beginnings in 1912 when a group of 26 civic-minded and professional men signed a petition of incorporation. Jacob Hanna, notary public, subscribed the petition for Los Angeles County on October 28, 1912.The purpose of the incorporation was to “foster and encourage commerce; to stimulate home manufacturers, to assist in securing a market for our products, to induce immigration, and the subdivision, settlement and cultivation of our lands; to assist in the development of material resources of the region and generally to promote the business interests of Montebello, California.” They were C.L. Edmundson, George W. Scoff, J.W. Van Orsdel, Bert E. Coffman, W.L. Mulford, J.S. Moore, E.A. Martin, W.F. Berry and C.J. Hinman. The incorporation was to last for fifty years and was approved by the Secretary of State on December 18, 1912. The official seal contained a red poinsettia in the center.The discovery of oil by Standard Oil Company on the Anita Baldwin property in 1917 brought about a revolutionary change to Montebello. Soon our desolate hills became a timbered forest of somber oil derricks. By 1920, Montebello oil fields were producing one-eighth of our state’s crude oil. Our population increased by 2,582 in 1920 to 7,064 in 1930.In 1916, Montebello united with Ramona Acres and the two became incorporated as the City of Monterey Park. The purpose was to prevent the tri-cites of Alhambra, South Pasadena and Pasadena from establishing a sewage disposal farm on our hills. With the objective accomplished, Montebello broke away from Monterey Park and on October 19, 1920, was incorporated as the 35th of the present cities in Los Angeles County.