El Segundo boasts a robust history and a unique small town charm.
The El Segundo and Los Angeles coastal area was once a part of Rancho Sausal Redondo ("Round Willow Patch Ranch"). Rancho Sausal Redondo extended from Playa Del Rey in the North to Redondo Beach in the South. Originally a Mexican land grant owned by Antonio Ygnacio Avila, the rancho was later purchased by a Scottish baronet named Sir Robert Burnett. After his return to Scotland, the property was purchased by current manager of the rancho, Daniel Freeman. Daniel Freeman sold portions of the rancho to several persons. George H. Peck owned the 840 acres of land the Chevron Refinery now sits on. Peck also developed land in El Porto where a street still bears his name. The city earned its name ("the second" in Spanish) as it was the site of the second Standard Oil refinery on the West Coast when Standard Oil of California purchased the 840 acres of in 1911.
The city was incorporated in 1917. The Standard Oil Company was renamed Chevron in 1984. The El Segundo refinery entered its second century of operation in 2011.
The Douglas Aircraft Company plant in El Segundo was one of the major aircraft manufacturing facilities in California during World War II. It was one of the major producers of SBD Dauntless dive bombers, which achieved fame in the Battle of Midway. The facility, now operated by Northrop Grumman, is still an aircraft plant.
El Segundo has many aviation-related and petroleum-related industries and operations. In 2006, it won an Eddy award for being the most business-friendly city in L.A. County. The name was adopted in 1911 when Chevron built its second refinery, El Segundo, which is Spanish for "The Second". In 1928 William Mines, an immigrant from leased land for a flying field. In 1930 Los Angeles Municipal Airport, later Los Angeles International opened north of El Segundo; its presence led to the concentration of aerospace and aviation-related firms in the El Segundo area.
Many large aerospace companies have facilities in El Segundo, including Boeing, Raytheon, Lockheed Martin, Northrop Grumman, Wyle Laboratories, The Aerospace Corporation, and Aerojet Rocketdyne Holdings. The last two are headquartered there. It is also home to the Los Angeles Air Force Base and and Missile Systems Center (SMC), which is responsible for space-related acquisition for the military.
Toy manufacturer Mattel, AT&T Entertainment Hub (formerly DirecTV) direct technology marketing company PCM, Inc., and A-Mark Precious Metals are headquartered there, as well as sporting goods retailer Big 5 Sporting Goods and Stamps.com. Database company Teradata has facility in El Segundo as well.