Maywood is a small Gateway city in Los Angeles County. At 1.18 square miles (3.1 km2), Maywood is the third-smallest incorporated city in Los Angeles County. It is bordered by the cities of Bell on the south, Vernon on the north and west, Huntington Park on the southwest, and Commerce on the east. It is the most densely-populated city in California, and has the highest proportion of Latinos, immigrants, and undocumented immigrants in the county.
As of July 1, 2010, Maywood became the first municipality in California to outsource all of its city services, dismantling its police department, laying off all city employees except for the city manager, city attorney and elected officials, and contracting with outside agencies for the provision of all municipal services. The population was 27,395 at the 2010 census.
The land on which Maywood now stands had been populated by Native American tribes for centuries. The area that would later become Maywood was deeded in 1781 by the Spanish monarchy to Spanish War veteran Manuel Nieto. When the settlement of Pueblo de Nuestra Senora de Los Angeles was recorded, it included the cow pasture (now Maywood) that eventually turned into a rancho.
In 1919, May Wood, a popular young woman who worked for the real estate corporation developing the 2,300 acres (930 hectares) ranch into home tracts, agreed to lend her name to the property. The development of Maywood later survived a bitter challenge to dissolve the prospective city in early 1924.
On September 2, 1924, Maywood's citizens voted to incorporate and about 300 people turned out for the dedication, including Miss May Wood.