Tustin is a city located in south Orange County, California, in the Los Angeles metropolitan area.
Because of a top 10% ranking in start-ups and sole proprietors per capita and one of the shortest commutes in Southern California, the city was chosen in 2009 by Forbes as one of the top 25 towns to live well in America.
Members of the Tongva and Juaneño/Luiseño nations long inhabited this area. After the 1769 Spanish expedition, the area was named Vallejo de Santa Ana (Valley of Saint Anne). On November 1, 1776, Mission San Juan Capistrano became the area’s first permanent European settlement in Alta California, New Spain.
In 1801, the Spanish Empire granted 62,500 acres (253 km2) to Jose Antonio Yorba, which he named Rancho San Antonio. Yorba’s great rancho included the lands where the cities of Olive, Orange, Villa Park, Santa Ana, Tustin, Costa Mesa and Newport Beach stand today. Smaller ranchos evolved from this large rancho including the Rancho Santiago de Santa Ana.
After the Mexican-American war, Alta California became part of the United States and American settlers arrived in this area. Columbus Tustin, a carriage maker from Northern California, founded the city in the 1870s on 1,300 acres of land from the former Rancho Santiago de Santa Ana. The city was incorporated in 1927 with a population of about 900.
During World War II, a Navy anti-submarine airship base (later to become a Marine Corps helicopter station) was established in unincorporated land south of the city; the two dirigible hangars are among the largest wooden structures ever built and are listed on the National Register of Historic Places and ASCE List of Historic Civil Engineering Landmarks. Suburban growth after the war resulted in increased population, annexation of nearby unincorporated land including the base, and development of orchards and farmland into housing tracts and shopping malls.