First of all, it’s Ti-Juana, not TIA-Juana.

Really drives me crazy!

Today is the birthday of that crazy Mexican town, Tijuana.  It was founded in 1889 on July 11.

OF course, the place is much, much older.

It was inhabited by a tribe of Yuman-speaking hunter-gatherers when the Spanish arrived in 1542.  Juan Rodriguez Cabrillo cruised UP and down the coastline of the Baja, noting the area in his diary.

In 1769, Juan Crespi gave it a name when he called it the Valley of Tijuana, which in the Yuman language means close to the sea, which puts to rest the rumor that the weed was good there and Crespi got all crispy and called it Aunt Jane’s place.

Really, Fake News!

At the end of the “mission era,” Jose Maria de Echeandia gave a big piece of property to Santiago Arguello which he used as a cattle ranch called Rancho Tia Juana, which is where that TiaJuana thing comes from.

As a result of the Mexican American war in 1846, Tijuana became a border town and reinvented itself as internationally important when it morphed from a town of ranchers to an urban settlement.

In 1889, the descendants sof Arguello and of Augustin Olvera created Tijuana as a city on July 11.

Eleven years later, there were 242 inhabitants.

In 1914 it got its first newspaper and a year later the Hippodrome opened.

The Caesar salad was invented by restaurateur Caesar Cardini in Tijuana in 1924!

In 1929 it got its first racetrack!

By 1940, the population was 16,486.

The Red Cross opened UP in 1943, and Jai alai popped in in 1946.

By 1950, there were nearly 60,000 folks living there!

So many people, someone decided to open a theater.

In 1958, they got an airport, and two years later, their own TV station.

Moving ahead to 1995, the place had a reputation for crazy tourists, tourists getting robbed, hookers, drugs, and crime.

There were 966,000 people there.

When the 2000s came along, Tijuana tried to clean UP its act and reputation.  After all, it was a city of 1.3 million with a soccer team, a baseball team, and a cultural center.

It also had a museum of Mariachi and Tequila, which is seen by many of the 300,000 tourist who come to the town DAILY!

Many come for the pharmacies which market to visitor from the US, some sell medicines with and without prescriptions at much lower costs than back home.

They also come for auto detailing, medical services, dentistry, and plastic surgery, all of which are less expensive in Tijuana than across the border in San Diego and the like!

Tijuana has re-marketed itself from the crime ridden town of movies to a thriving business center affording services a less cost!

So, happy birthday Tijuana!