History 2017-10-11T13:32:39+00:00

The Bixbys, the oil boom and beautification

Present Day

With details of the oil consolidation and wetlands restoration refined, an EIR has been prepared. LCWA and Los Cerritos Wetlands, LLC enter into an Option Agreement on September 2, 2016. City of Long Beach issues Notice of Preparation on April 28, 2016 and holds an EIR Scoping Meeting on May 11, 2016.  The public comment period for the DEIR is July 24th until September 6th 2017.


Los Cerritos Wetlands, LLC purchases property from LCW Partners, wells are operated by Synergy Oil and Gas, LLC.


LCW Partners purchases property from the Bixby family. The Coastal Conservancy dedicates the 5-acre property at Studebaker Road and 2nd Street to LCWA.


The Coastal Conservancy enters into a Joint Exercise of Powers Agreement with the Los Angeles and San Gabriel Rivers and Mountains Conservancy, and the cities of Seal Beach and Long Beach to create the Los Cerritos Wetlands Authority (LCWA). The next year, the Coastal Conservancy dedicates the 5-acre property at Studebaker Road and 2nd Street to LCWA.


Southern California Edison dedicates the 5-acre property at the northeast corner of Studebaker Road and 2nd Street to the State Coastal Conservancy.


The Fred H. Bixby Ranch Company is formed by Fred H. Bixby, later known as the Bixby Ranch Company. Various third party operators drill the field on behalf of Bixby. The wells on the Synergy Site and Pumpkin Patch are part of the Bixby A lease.

1930s – 1950s

Most of the San Gabriel River is paved, along with primary tributaries, wetland areas are reduced. Prior to this time, most of southeast Long Beach is subject to flood inundation.


In April, peak production at the Synergy site is achieved: 193,880 barrels of oil are produced that month, the equivalent to 6,463 barrels per day from the site.


Marland Oil Company is consolidated into the Continental Oil Company (Conoco); Conoco continues to operate wells on the Synergy and Pumpkin Patch sites. Oil production is a major industry in the State of California.


Peak production is reached for the Seal Beach Oil Field: 70,000 barrels per day in June.


Marland Oil drills Bixby 2 on the Bixby Ranch and what is now the Synergy site, opening the Seal Beach Oil Field to commercial production.

1924- 1928

Bixby Ranch Field Office is built by Marland Oil Company, it was originally located on land approximately 1/3 miles southwest of the current location.


Marland Oil Company is incorporated in California.


Oil is discovered on Signal Hill by Shell Oil Company. Oil becomes the primary industry in the City of Long Beach.


Major flooding occurs in Los Angeles County and a County Board of Engineers is formed to try to manage the rivers during floods.

1867 – 1868

Prior to 1867, the San Gabriel River empties into the Ocean near the current outlet of the Los Angeles River. In 1867, a logjam on the San Gabriel River near Whittier breaks, resulting in a new channel being cut in a southerly direction, emptying into Alamitos Bay, at its current location.


Jotham Bixby exercises purchase option and becomes a partner in Rancho Los Cerritos; Jotham Bixby is often referred to as the “Father of Long Beach.”


Rancho Los Cerritos is sold to Thomas and Benjamin Flint and their cousin, Lewellyn Bixby (Flint, Bixby & Company); eventually, Lewellyn Bixby’s family assumes ownership of all companies held by Flint, Bixby & Company. Property is managed by Lewellyn’s brother, Jotham Bixby.

Obtaining our goals through hard work and determination.