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Chandler History, Arizona

Chandler, AZ is located in the county of Maricopa. Chandler is a suburb of one of the largest cities in Arizona, Phoenix. The total population of Chandler is more than 240,000 as of the census in 2006.

The history of Chandler begins in 1891. Dr. Alexander John Chandler moved to a ranch in the area of Mesa. The doctor was the first ever veterinary doctor in all of Arizona. On the ranch he settled, Dr. Chandler studied the irrigation systems of the desert. As his land holdings grew with more than 18,000 acres by the year 1900, Dr. Chandler decided to change the site from his personal ranch to a town by the name of Chandler Ranch.

On May 17, 1917, the town of Chandler opened its doors. The year 1917 was big for the Chandler Ranch. The local high school was opened and within the first year, a town center was operating in the mainstream. The Hotel San Marcos, known as the first ever golf resort in the state of Arizona soon chose Chandler Ranch as the spot for construction.

Soon after the beginning of Chandler, the United States fell into the Great Depression. While the rest of the United State fought to feed their families and find work, Chandler managed to move through the depression relatively unscathed. The only financial setback related to the depression was the cancellation of a second Hotel San Marcos.

Moving through the Great Depression seemed like a dream come true. That is until the cotton crash devastated the townspeople leaving Chandler in a state of rebuilding.

Chandler remained under the radar in terms of population for many years. The town was relatively unknown. In 1941, Williams Air Force Base was constructed in Chandler and the population boost created from the base brought the town’s population up to a mere 3,800 people.

Over the next 30 years, people trickled into Chandler raising the population to more than 30,000 people with another 60,000 people moving into the area in the next 10 years. The close proximity to the thriving city of Phoenix, now a huge metropolitan city, again gave a boost to the population of the now bedroom community. The lands once filled with agriculture, were replaced with suburbs and housing developments. Today, there are more than 240,000 people living in Chandler. The population growth in the last 8 years has totaled 36%. The total land encompassing Chandler now totals 58 square miles.

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