In the 1930s, the Salinas Valley was a poorly developed area with a relatively low population of about 5,000 people. The Great Depression did not affect the Salinas Valley as much as it did many other parts of the United States, and during the 1930s many displaced workers from other areas of the country came to Salinas Valley.
The increase in population in the 1930s lead to a significant increase in productivity in Salinas Valley. The main economy of the valley in the 1930s was agriculture. During that period, numerous residential buildings were built in the area to accommodate the new workforce. There were apartment complexes and houses, a civic auditorium and many public schools and colleges.