We noticed that you're using an unsupported browser. The TripAdvisor website may not display properly.We support the following browsers: Windows: Internet Explorer, Mozilla Firefox, Google Chrome. Mac: Safari.
The history of Mesa, Arizona goes back thousands of years, to the times when the first indigenous people are believed to have lived in the area around 25,000 B.C.
During the first century of the modern era, pit dwellers referred to as the Hohokams ("those who have gone") began inhabiting the area. Over the many centuries, the Hohokams lived in the area in pit houses and larger adobe compounds, building irrigation networks that can still be seen today. Mesa Grande is a Hohokam compound currently preserved by the City of Mesa, and numerous other Hohokam mounds and ballcourts can be found in Mesa.
During the 14th through 16th centuries, the Hohokam "disappeared," and other Native American groups, such as the Pima, Tohono O'odham, and others (all likely descendents of the Hohokam) appeared in the area around Mesa.
In 1878, two groups of Mormon Pioneers came to Mesa. The first group settled in the Lehi area of Mesa, while the other settled on the Mesa top, in what is now downtown Mesa. These groups began clearing the ancient irrigation canals for use, and turned the area into well-used agricultural land, growing cotton, citrus, and cattle.
Other culturally, ethnically, and religiously diverse groups soon settled in Mesa, which is now the 38th largest city in the United States.