02 November . 2016
History of Goodyear
When was the last time you were given a history lesson? Well, today’s the day. Let’s travel back in time and go on an adventure to discover the history of our great city, Goodyear.
In 1917, there was far from much development in the west valley of Arizona when Goodyear Tire and Rubber Company purchased 16,000 acres of land to cultivate cotton for tire threads to be used for World War I vehicles. A small community formed and was initially known as “Egypt” due to the Egyptian cotton being farmed in the area. Eventually, the town of Goodyear was named after the founder of the Goodyear Tire and Rubber Company, Charles Goodyear.
The community continued to grow and in November of 1946, the town of Goodyear was incorporated, consisting of around 150 homes, 250 apartments, grocery store, barber shop, drug store and service station.
While the community thrived while the cotton industry was strong, the local economy sunk until World War II when the Litchfield Naval Air Facility and Goodyear Aircraft Corporation (GAC) would spark growth in Goodyear. GAC would go on to produce more than three million pounds of aircraft frames with the naval facility employing more than 7,500 people at one time.
With the end of World War II, the naval base would act as a storage location for aircrafts and a training facility for the Navy’s Blue Angels aerial demonstration team until the late 1960s. The Litchfield Naval Air Facility was eventually sold to the city of Phoenix and currently operates as the Phoenix-Goodyear Airport.
By the 1980s, the Goodyear population would double and in 1985 the town was officially recognized as a city. Today, our city stretches more than 120 square miles and offers a high quality of life, with a myriad of shopping and dining opportunities, the Goodyear Ball Park, home to the Cincinnati Reds and the Cleveland Indians, and the 19,000-acre Estrella Mountain Regional Park, which offers eight major mixed-use trails. With more than 65,000 residents calling Goodyear home, it no surprise it’s one of the fastest growing cities in the United States.
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