Many people who visit the Downey History Center ask questions regarding who some of the early settlers were and the different areas of the city get their names.
The two early settlements of Downey were Gallatin and College towns.
There is no accurate date of the Gallatin settlement, but by 1867 early settlers' records called the area Gallatin. The story of the name was that W.S. Standifer, a local general store owner, was an enthusiastic racehorse fan and had won a large sum of money on an eastern racehorse named Gallatin. Hence the name, Gallatin.
This settlement was located at the intersection of Jaboneria Road and Lexington-Gallatin Road which is now Paramount Boulevard and Florence Avenue.
Many pioneers coming to the Downey area came by the Old Santa Fe Trail and is reputed to be the second American settled community in this part of the state.
If you want to learn more about Downey, visit the History Center.
Bobbi Bruce is a member of the Downey Historical Society.