Glendale is a city in Maricopa County, Arizona, United States, located about nine miles (14 km) northwest from Downtown Phoenix. According to the 2010 census, the population of the city is 226,721.
In the late 1800s what is now known as Glendale, Arizona, was all desert. William John Murphy, a native of New Hartford, New York who resided in the town of Flagstaff in what was then known as the territory of Arizona, was in charge of building a 40-mile long Arizona Canal from Granite Reef to New River for the Arizona Canal Company. He completed the canal, which would bring water to the desert land, in 1885.Murphy was deep in debt, since he had agreed to be paid in Arizona Canal Company stock and bonds and land instead of cash. In 1887, Murphy formed the Arizona Improvement Company. His objective was to sell the land and water rights south of the canal. Murphy had to raise capital from out of state sources in order to meet payroll and construction expenses. Murphy decided to refer to this land as "Glendale". In order to develop and interest potential investors and settlers in this new town, Murphy decided to provide a better way of access from Phoenix to Glendale and ending in the town of Peoria by building an 18 mile long diagonal road which he named Grand Avenue.