The history of land use controls is as old as history itself. In this chapter, after a short reference to colonial times, a rapid review is given of the foundations and early development of American controls, from the nineteenth-century ‘nuisance’ cases up to the time of the classic Euclid case, which laid upon zoning the imprimatur of the US Supreme Court. The full story of this case is a fascinating one, particularly with the virtually cliff-edge climax of the Supreme Court’s deliberations. By way of introduction it is useful to list some of the more important factors which gave rise to zoning.