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El Monte was known as the end of the Santa Fe Trail for westbound travelers. The water sources they found in the woodland in the 1850s later nourished orange and walnut groves and vast tracts of flowering plants used for seed production.
During the 1920s and ’30s, El Monte became associated with a far more unusual farm, one that raised lions for the film industry. At one time Gay’s Lion Farm was home to more than 200 lions, including Jackie, who roared his way to fame within the MGM motto “Ars Gratia Artis” (or “Art for Art's Sake”). World War II austerities forced the farm to close, but a statue of Jackie the MGM lion can be found on El Monte High School’s campus at 3048 Tyler Ave.

El Monte/South El Monte Chamber of Commerce 10505 Valley Blvd. Suite 212 El Monte, CA 91731. Phone:(626)443-0180

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El Monte Historical Museum
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Current Location: El Monte, California
Americas Best Value Inn & Suites
12040 Garvey Ave. El Monte, CA 91732
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