city, Ventura county, southern California, U.S. Situated in the Conejo (Spanish: "Rabbit") Valley along the Ventura-Los Angeles county line, it lies 40 miles (60 km) west of Los Angeles. Originally inhabited by Chumash Indians, the area was reached in 1542 by the Spanish explorer Juan Rodriguez Cabrillo. The area was largely unsettled until 1803, when soldiers Jose Polanco and Ignacio Rodriquez were ceded a Spanish land grant called Rancho El Conejo. In the 1870s the area became a stagecoach stop between Los Angeles and San Francisco. Throughout the 19th century, the original rancho lands were subdivided, and in 1910 Edwin and Harold Janss purchased about one-fifth of the original grant, which now forms the central part of the city. The area developed as an agricultural centre, with poultry and dairy farms and extensive apricot groves. Tourists were drawn to the area beginning in 1927, when Goebel's Lion Farm (later called Jungleland; closed 1969) opened. The Janss Conejo Ranch later was used for the filming of many of the episodes of the television series Bonanza, and the city was the backdrop for several popular movies.
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