San Joaquin Valley
The San Joaquin Valley is the area of the Central Valley of the U. S. state of California that lies south of the Sacramento–San Joaquin River Delta and is drained by the San Joaquin River. It comprises seven counties of Northern and one of Southern California, including, in the north, all of San Joaquin and Kings counties, most of Stanislaus and Fresno counties, parts of Madera and Tulare counties, along with a majority of Kern County, in Southern California. Although a majority of the valley is rural, it does contain cities such as Fresno, Stockton, Turlock, Porterville, Visalia and Hanford. San Joaquin Valley was inhabited by the Yokuts and Miwok peoples; the first European to enter the valley was Pedro Fages in 1772. The San Joaquin Valley extends from the Sacramento–San Joaquin River Delta in the north to the Tehachapi Mountains in the south, from the various California coastal ranges in the west to the Sierra Nevada in the east. Unlike the Sacramento Valley, the river system for which the San Joaquin Valley is named does not extend far along the valley.
Most of the valley south of Fresno, drains into Tulare Lake, which no longer exists continuously due to diversion of its sources. The valley's primary river is the San Joaquin, which drains north through about half of the valley into the Sacramento–San Joaquin River Delta; the Kings and Kern Rivers are in the southern endorheic basin of the valley, all of which have been diverted for agricultural uses and are dry in their lower reaches. The San Joaquin Valley began to form about 66 million years ago during the early Paleocene era. Broad fluctuations in the sea level caused various areas of the valley to be flooded with ocean water for the next 60 million years. About 5 million years ago, the marine outlets began to close due to uplift of the coastal ranges and the deposition of sediment in the valley. Starting 2 million years ago, a series of glacial episodes periodically caused much of the valley to become a fresh water lake. Lake Corcoran was the last widespread lake to fill the valley about 700,000 years ago.
At the beginning of the Holocene there were three major lakes remaining in the southern part of the Valley, Tulare Lake, Buena Vista Lake and Kern Lake. In the late 19th and in the 20th century, agricultural diversion of the Kern River dried out these lakes. Today, only a fragment of Buena Vista Lake remains as two small lakes Lake Webb and Lake Evans in a portion of the former Buena Vista Lakebed The San Joaquin Valley has hot, dry summers and has enjoyed cool rainy winters characterized by dense tule fog, its rainy season runs from November through April, but since 2011 when a drought became evident it received minimal to no rain at all. The drought was still extant by mid-August 2014 with scientists saying it would continue indefinitely, for anywhere from several years to several decades to come; as of February 2017 the majority of the Valley experienced a reprieve from the drought. However, as of February 2018, much of the Valley appears to be headed back into drought along with much of the rest of the State.
In August 2015, the Director of the California Department of Water Resources stated, "Because of increased pumping, groundwater levels are reaching record lows—up to 100 feet lower than previous records." Research from NASA shows that parts of the San Joaquin Valley sank as much as 8 inches in a four-month period, land near Corcoran sank 13 inches in 8 months. The sinking has destroyed thousands of groundwater well casings and has the potential to damage aqueducts, roads and flood-control structures. In the long term, the subsidence caused by extracting groundwater could irreversibly reduce the underground aquifer's water storage capacity, although immediate and short term needs are given higher priority and sense of urgency than long term sustainability; the National Weather Service Forecast Office for the San Joaquin Valley is located in Hanford and includes a Doppler weather radar. Weather forecasts and climatological information for the San Joaquin Valley are available from its official website.
The total population of the eight counties comprising the San Joaquin Valley at the time of the 2011-2015 American Community Survey 5-year Estimates by United States Census Bureau reported a population of 4,080,509. The racial composition of San Joaquin Valley was 2,775,074 White, 193,694 Black or African American, 40,911 American Indian and Alaska Native, 310,557 Asian, 13,000 Native Hawaiian and other Pacific Islander, 2,048,280 Hispanic or Latino; the educational attainment of high school graduate or higher is 72.7%. By some estimates, federal restrictions on shallow well irrigation systems threaten the productivity of the San Joaquin Valley, which produces the majority of the 12.8% of the United States' agricultural production that comes from California. Grapes—table, to a lesser extent wine—are the valley's highest-profile product, but important are cotton, nuts and vegetables; the San Joaquin Valley has been called "The food basket of the world", for the diversity of its produce. Walnuts, peaches, tangerines, kiwis, hay and numerous other crops have been harvested with great success.
DeRuosi Nut, a large walnut processing plant in Escalon, has been in the valley since 1947. Certain places are identified quite with a given crop: Stockton produces the majority of the domestic asparagus consumed in the United States, Fresno is the largest produ
Schoenoplectus acutus, called tule, common tule, hardstem tule, tule rush, hardstem bulrush, or viscid bulrush, is a giant species of sedge in the plant family Cyperaceae, native to freshwater marshes all over North America. The common name derives from the Nāhuatl word tōllin, was first applied by the early settlers from New Spain who recognized the marsh plants in the Central Valley of California as similar to those in the marshes around Mexico City. Tules once lined the shores of Tulare Lake, California the largest freshwater lake in the western United States, until it was drained by land speculators in the 20th century; the expression "out in the tules" is still common, deriving from the dialect of old Californian families and means "where no one would want to live", with a touch of irony. The phrase is comparable to "out in the boondocks". Schoenoplectus acutus has a thick, rounded green stem growing to 1 to 3 m tall, with long, grasslike leaves, radially symmetrical, pale brownish flowers.
Tules at shorelines play an important ecological role, helping to buffer against wind and water forces, thereby allowing the establishment of other types of plants and reducing erosion. Tules are sometimes cleared from waterways using herbicides; when erosion occurs, tule rhizomes are replanted in strategic areas. The two varieties are: Schoenoplectus acutus var. acutus – northern and eastern North America Schoenoplectus acutus var. occidentalis – southwestern North America Dyed and woven, tules are used to make baskets, mats, clothing, duck decoys, boats by Native American groups. Before the Salish got horses for bison hunting, they lived in tents covered with sewed mats of tule. At least two tribes, the Wanapum and the Pomo people, constructed tule houses as as the 1950s and still do for special occasions. Bay Miwok, Coast Miwok, Ohlone peoples used the tule in the manufacture of canoes or balsas, for transportation across the San Francisco Bay and using the marine and wetland resources. Northern groups of Chumash used the tule in the manufacture of canoes rather than the sewn-plank tomol used by Chumash and used them to gather marine harvests.
The Paiutes named a neighboring tribe the Si-Te-Cah in their language. The young sprouts and shoots can be eaten raw and the rhizomes and unripe flower heads can be boiled as vegetables. One of the few Pomo survivors of the Bloody Island Massacre in Northern California, a 6-year-old girl named Ni'ka, or Lucy Moore, evaded the United States Cavalry by hiding behind the tule reeds in the bloodied water, her descendants have since formed the Lucy Moore Foundation to work for better relations between the Pomo and residents of California. It is so common in wetlands in California, several places in the state were named for it, including Tulare. Tule Lake includes Tule Lake National Wildlife Refuge, it was the site of an internment camp for Japanese Americans during World War II, imprisoning 18,700 people at its peak. The town of Tulelake is northeast of the lake. California has a Tule River; the Tule Desert is located in Nevada. Nevada has Tule Springs. California's dense, ground-hugging tule fog is named for the plant, as are the tule elk and tule perch.
The giant garter snake was closely associated with tule marshes in California's Central Valley. Munz, Philip A. A California Flora. Berkeley, CA: University of California Press, 1973, copyright 1959 Munz, Philip A. A California Flora: Supplement. Berkeley, CA: University of California Press, 1976 Jones, Terry L. and Klar, Kathryn California prehistory: colonization and complexity, Walnut Creek, CA: Altamira Press, 2007 C. Michael Hogan Morro Creek, published by Megalithic Portal, ed. Andy Burnham Tule Boat Photo Gallery Tule reed canoe, launched on Lake Merced, San Francisco Tule reed canoe, Modoc Swall, Corinne. Tule reed boat workbook: a voyage of adventure. Kentfield, CA: Mother Lode Musical Theatre, Watershed Preservation Network. Archived from the original on 2011-07-27
The National Aeronautics and Space Administration is an independent agency of the United States Federal Government responsible for the civilian space program, as well as aeronautics and aerospace research. NASA was established in 1958; the new agency was to have a distinctly civilian orientation, encouraging peaceful applications in space science. Since its establishment, most US space exploration efforts have been led by NASA, including the Apollo Moon landing missions, the Skylab space station, the Space Shuttle. NASA is supporting the International Space Station and is overseeing the development of the Orion Multi-Purpose Crew Vehicle, the Space Launch System and Commercial Crew vehicles; the agency is responsible for the Launch Services Program which provides oversight of launch operations and countdown management for unmanned NASA launches. NASA science is focused on better understanding Earth through the Earth Observing System. From 1946, the National Advisory Committee for Aeronautics had been experimenting with rocket planes such as the supersonic Bell X-1.
In the early 1950s, there was challenge to launch an artificial satellite for the International Geophysical Year. An effort for this was the American Project Vanguard. After the Soviet launch of the world's first artificial satellite on October 4, 1957, the attention of the United States turned toward its own fledgling space efforts; the US Congress, alarmed by the perceived threat to national security and technological leadership, urged immediate and swift action. On January 12, 1958, NACA organized a "Special Committee on Space Technology", headed by Guyford Stever. On January 14, 1958, NACA Director Hugh Dryden published "A National Research Program for Space Technology" stating: It is of great urgency and importance to our country both from consideration of our prestige as a nation as well as military necessity that this challenge be met by an energetic program of research and development for the conquest of space... It is accordingly proposed that the scientific research be the responsibility of a national civilian agency...
NACA is capable, by rapid extension and expansion of its effort, of providing leadership in space technology. While this new federal agency would conduct all non-military space activity, the Advanced Research Projects Agency was created in February 1958 to develop space technology for military application. On July 29, 1958, Eisenhower signed the National Aeronautics and Space Act, establishing NASA; when it began operations on October 1, 1958, NASA absorbed the 43-year-old NACA intact. A NASA seal was approved by President Eisenhower in 1959. Elements of the Army Ballistic Missile Agency and the United States Naval Research Laboratory were incorporated into NASA. A significant contributor to NASA's entry into the Space Race with the Soviet Union was the technology from the German rocket program led by Wernher von Braun, now working for the Army Ballistic Missile Agency, which in turn incorporated the technology of American scientist Robert Goddard's earlier works. Earlier research efforts within the US Air Force and many of ARPA's early space programs were transferred to NASA.
In December 1958, NASA gained control of the Jet Propulsion Laboratory, a contractor facility operated by the California Institute of Technology. The agency's leader, NASA's administrator, is nominated by the President of the United States subject to approval of the US Senate, reports to him or her and serves as senior space science advisor. Though space exploration is ostensibly non-partisan, the appointee is associated with the President's political party, a new administrator is chosen when the Presidency changes parties; the only exceptions to this have been: Democrat Thomas O. Paine, acting administrator under Democrat Lyndon B. Johnson, stayed on while Republican Richard Nixon tried but failed to get one of his own choices to accept the job. Paine was confirmed by the Senate in March 1969 and served through September 1970. Republican James C. Fletcher, appointed by Nixon and confirmed in April 1971, stayed through May 1977 into the term of Democrat Jimmy Carter. Daniel Goldin was appointed by Republican George H. W. Bush and stayed through the entire administration of Democrat Bill Clinton.
Robert M. Lightfoot, Jr. associate administrator under Democrat Barack Obama, was kept on as acting administrator by Republican Donald Trump until Trump's own choice Jim Bridenstine, was confirmed in April 2018. Though the agency is independent, the survival or discontinuation of projects can depend directly on the will of the President; the first administrator was Dr. T. Keith Glennan appointed by Republican President Dwight D. Eisenhower. During his term he brought together the disparate projects in American space development research; the second administrator, James E. Webb, appointed by President John F. Kennedy, was a Democrat who first publicly served under President Harry S. Truman. In order to implement the Apollo program to achieve Kennedy's Moon la
The Sacramento Valley is the area of the Central Valley of the U. S. state of California that lies north of the Sacramento–San Joaquin River Delta and is drained by the Sacramento River. It encompasses parts of ten Northern California counties. Although many areas of the Sacramento Valley are rural, it contains several urban areas, including the state capital, Sacramento; the Sacramento River and its tributaries are a huge part of the geography of the Sacramento Valley. Rising in the various mountain ranges that define the shape of the valley, they provide water for agricultural, industrial and recreation uses. Most of the rivers are dammed and diverted; the terrain of the Sacramento Valley is flat grasslands that become lusher as one moves east from the rain shadow of the Coast Ranges toward the Sierra. Unlike the San Joaquin Valley, which in its pre-irrigation state was a vegetation-hostile desert, the somewhat less arid Sacramento Valley had significant tracts of forest prior to the arrival of settlers of European ancestry.
Most of it was cut down during the California Gold Rush and the ensuing wave of American settlement, although there are still some tree-populated areas, such as the greater Sacramento area. Foothills become more common from just south of Corning to Shasta Lake City; these begin south of the Tehama-Glenn County line near Corning. There are a few hills in Red Bluff and Corning. There is one major range of foothills between Cottonwood and Red Bluff known as the Cottonwood Hills, there is the Cottonwood Ridge between Anderson and Cottonwood. There are some hills in Redding, a few more than Red Bluff, after Redding it is foothills. One distinctive geographic feature of the Sacramento Valley is the Sutter Buttes. Nicknamed the smallest mountain range in the world, it consists of the remnants of an extinct volcano and is located just outside Yuba City, 44 miles north of Sacramento. Citrus and nut orchards and cattle ranches are common to both halves of the Central Valley; the Sacramento Valley's agricultural industry resembles that of the San Joaquin Valley to the south.
Nuts, such as almonds and walnuts, are of greater importance north of the Delta, rice, nonviable in the drier San Joaquin Valley, is a major crop. The town of Corning produces olives for consumption as fruit; the Sunsweet Growers Incorporated headquarters are in Yuba City. The valley controls more than two-thirds of the worldwide prune market through the over 400 growers in California. Weather patterns in the Sacramento Valley are similar to those in the San Joaquin Valley to the south, although the humidity and precipitation tends to be a bit higher. Summers are the dry season, with average daytime temperatures in the upper 80s to mid 90s but triple digits are a common occurrence in the Chico and Red Bluff area; the "breeze", which comes in from the Bay area, brings higher humidity. At times the delta breeze is gusty with wind speed to up to 30 mph in the valley and up to 45 mph in the delta region, always breezy; this breeze can bring morning low clouds at times into the region, but the clouds burn off and temperatures stay cool.
Summer-like conditions continue into early to mid-September but weather starts to change to cooler, foggier weather during October which gives trees vibrant autumn foliage. Winters known as the rainy season, are mild to cool and wet with highs averaging in the mid-40s °F and lows reaching to the low 10s °F, colder in the northern part of the valley and colder still in the foothills and frost can occur anywhere; the rainy season runs from October to April but it's not unusual for rain to occur in September or May. During the rainy season, the Sacramento Valley is prone to strong thunderstorms and tornadoes of EF0 or EF1 intensity in Colusa County and areas around Corning and Orland. Flooding does occur at times during wetter periods November to March. Snow in the valley is rare, although Redding and Red Bluff, being at the north end of the valley experience a light dusting or two per year. Chico may get a rain-snow mix every few years, but, on the average, only snows about every 5 years. Farther south in snow falls about once every 10 years or so.
During the autumn and winter months, the entire Central Valley is susceptible to dense tule fog that makes driving hazardous at night and south of Corning. The fog can last for weeks depending on. Interstate 5 is the primary route through the Sacramento Valley, traveling north-south along the valley's western edge. Interstate 80 cuts a northeast-to-southwest swath through the southern end of the valley through Sacramento and Yolo Counties, ends at the San Francisco-Oakland Bay Bridge. Several secondary routes connect the two roads, including Interstate 505 and State Route 113; the Sacramento area has a web of urban freeways. Other principal routes in the region include State Route 99, which runs along the valley's eastern edge parallel to I-5, from Sacramento until its northern terminus in Red Bluff; the Union Pacific Railroad serves the valley
Terra is a multi-national NASA scientific research satellite in a Sun-synchronous orbit around the Earth. It is the flagship of the Earth Observing System; the name "Terra" comes from the Latin word for Earth. A naming contest was held by NASA among U. S. high school students. The winning essay was submitted by Sasha Jones of Missouri; the identifier "AM-1" refers to its orbit. The satellite was launched from Vandenberg Air Force Base on December 18, 1999, aboard an Atlas IIAS vehicle and began collecting data on February 24, 2000, it was placed into a near-polar, sun-synchronous orbit at an altitude of 705 km, with a 10:30am descending node. Terra carries a payload of five remote sensors designed to monitor the state of Earth's environment and ongoing changes in its climate system: ASTER ASTER creates high-resolution images of clouds, ice and the land surface using 3 different sensor subsystems, they are the Shortwave Infrared. They cover 14 multi-spectral bands from visible to the thermal infrared.
The SWIR stopped working in 2008. ASTER was provided by Japan’s Ministry of Economy and Industry. CERES MISR MODIS MOPITT Data from the satellite helps scientists better understand the spread of pollution around the globe. Studies have used instruments on Terra to examine trends in global carbon monoxide and aerosol pollution; the data collected by Terra will become a new, 15-year global data set. After launch, operators observed that high energy protons like those found over the South Atlantic Anomaly or the poles could induce single-event upsets that would cause the Motor Drive Assembly Built-In Test Equipment to turn off the MDA; these false shut-downs occur 12-14 times a month and the operations team automated the recovery to reduce the impact of these shut-downs. Starting in 2007, increased thermal resistance in the SWIR cryocooler of the ASTER instrument caused the temperature to increase. By 2008, despite frequent attempts to recycle the cryocooler the data began to degrade and on January 12, 2009, ASTER managers declared the SWIR no longer functional due to anomalously high SWIR detector temperatures.
Data gathered after April 2008 was declared not usable. On October 13, 2009, Terra suffered a single battery cell failure anomaly and a battery heater control anomaly the result of a Micrometeoroid or Orbital Debris strike. In June and October 2008 the spacecraft was targeted by hackers who gained unauthorized access to its command and control systems, but did not issue any commands. Aqua Artificial structures visible from space Aura NASA Terra site
National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration
The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration is an American scientific agency within the United States Department of Commerce that focuses on the conditions of the oceans, major waterways, the atmosphere. NOAA warns of dangerous weather, charts seas, guides the use and protection of ocean and coastal resources, conducts research to provide understanding and improve stewardship of the environment. NOAA was formed in 1970 and in 2017 had over 11,000 civilian employees, its research and operations are further supported by 321 uniformed service members who make up the NOAA Commissioned Corps. Since October 2017, NOAA has been headed by Timothy Gallaudet, as acting Under Secretary of Commerce for Oceans and Atmosphere and NOAA interim administrator. NOAA plays several specific roles in society, the benefits of which extend beyond the US economy and into the larger global community: A Supplier of Environmental Information Products. NOAA supplies to its customers and partners information pertaining to the state of the oceans and the atmosphere.
This is clear through the production of weather warnings and forecasts via the National Weather Service, but NOAA's information products extend to climate and commerce as well. A Provider of Environmental Stewardship Services. NOAA is a steward of U. S. coastal and marine environments. In coordination with federal, local and international authorities, NOAA manages the use of these environments, regulating fisheries and marine sanctuaries as well as protecting threatened and endangered marine species. A Leader in Applied Scientific Research. NOAA is intended to be a source of accurate and objective scientific information in the four particular areas of national and global importance identified above: ecosystems, climate and water, commerce and transportation; the five "fundamental activities" are: Monitoring and observing Earth systems with instruments and data collection networks. Understanding and describing Earth systems through research and analysis of that data. Assessing and predicting the changes of these systems over time.
Engaging and informing the public and partner organizations with important information. Managing resources for the betterment of society and environment. NOAA traces its history back to multiple agencies, some of which were among the oldest in the federal government: United States Coast and Geodetic Survey, formed in 1807 Weather Bureau of the United States, formed in 1870 Bureau of Commercial Fisheries, formed in 1871 Coast and Geodetic Survey Corps, formed in 1917Another direct predecessor of NOAA was the Environmental Science Services Administration, into which several existing scientific agencies such as the United States Coast and Geodetic Survey, the Weather Bureau and the uniformed Corps were absorbed in 1965. NOAA was established within the Department of Commerce via the Reorganization Plan No. 4 and formed on October 3, 1970 after U. S. President Richard Nixon proposed creating a new agency to serve a national need for "better protection of life and property from natural hazards …for a better understanding of the total environment… for exploration and development leading to the intelligent use of our marine resources."
In 2007, NOAA celebrated 200 years of service in its role as successor to the United States Survey of the Coast. In 2013, NOAA closed 600 weather stations. Since October 25, 2017 Timothy Gallaudet, Assistant Secretary of Commerce for Oceans and Atmosphere, has served as acting Under Secretary of Commerce for Oceans and Atmosphere at the US Department of Commerce and NOAA's interim administrator. Gallaudet succeeded Benjamin Friedman, who served as NOAA's interim administrator since the end of the Obama Administration on January 20, 2017. In October 2017, Barry Lee Myers, CEO of AccuWeather, was proposed to be the agency's administrator by the Trump Administration. NOAA works toward its mission through six major line offices, the National Environmental Satellite and Information Service, the National Marine Fisheries Service, the National Ocean Service, the National Weather Service, the Office of Oceanic and Atmospheric Research and the Office of Marine & Aviation Operations, and in addition more than a dozen staff offices, including the Office of the Federal Coordinator for Meteorology, the NOAA Central Library, the Office of Program Planning and Integration.
The National Weather Service is tasked with providing "weather and climate forecasts and warnings for the United States, its territories, adjacent waters and ocean areas, for the protection of life and property and the enhancement of the national economy." This is done through a collection of national and regional centers, 13 river forecast centers, more than 120 local weather forecast offices. They are charged with issuing weather and river forecasts, advisories and warnings on a daily basis, they issue more than 734,000 weather and 850,000 river forecasts, more than 45,000 severe weather warnings annually. NOAA data is relevant to the issues of global warming and ozone depletion; the NWS operates NEXRAD, a nationwide network of Doppler weather radars which can detect precipitation and their velocities. Many of their products are broadcast on NOAA Weather Radio, a network of radio transmitters that broadcasts weather forecasts, severe weather statements and warnings 24 hours a day; the National Ocean Service focuses on ensuring that ocean and coastal areas are safe and productive.
NOS scientists, natural resource managers, specialists serve America by ensuring safe and efficient marine transportation, promoting innovative solutions to protect coastal communities, conserving mari
Bakersfield is a city in and the county seat of Kern County, United States. It covers about 151 sq mi near the southern end of the San Joaquin Valley and the Central Valley region. Bakersfield's population is around 380,000, making it the 9th-most populous city in California and the 52nd-most populous city in the nation; the Bakersfield–Delano Metropolitan Statistical Area, which includes all of Kern County, had a 2010 census population of 839,631, making it the 62nd-largest metropolitan area in the United States. The more built-up urban area that includes Bakersfield and areas around the city, such as East Bakersfield and Rosedale, has a population of over 520,000. Bakersfield is a charter city; the city is a significant hub for both oil production. Kern County is the most productive oil-producing county and the fourth-most productive agricultural county in the United States. Industries include natural gas and other energy extraction, mining, petroleum refining, distribution, food processing, corporate regional offices.
The city is the birthplace of the country music genre known as the Bakersfield sound. Archaeological evidence indicates the presence of Native American settlements dating back thousands of years; the Yokuts lived in lodges along the branches of the Kern River delta and hunted antelope, tule elk, bear and game birds. In 1776, Spanish missionary Father Francisco Garcés became the first European to explore the area. Owing to the remoteness and inaccessibility of the region, the Yokuts remained isolated until after the Mexican War of Independence, when Mexican settlers began to migrate to the area. Following the discovery of gold in California in 1848, settlers flooded into the San Joaquin Valley. In 1851, gold was discovered along the Kern River in the southern Sierra Nevada, in 1865, oil was discovered in the valley; the Bakersfield area, once a tule reed-covered marshland, was first known as Kern Island to the handful of pioneers, who built log cabins there in 1860. The area was subject to periodic flooding from the Kern River, which occupied what is now the downtown area, experienced outbreaks of malaria.
In 1862, disastrous floods swept away the original settlement founded in 1860 by the German-born Christian Bohna. Among those attracted to the area by the California gold rush was Thomas Baker, a lawyer and former colonel in the militia of Ohio, his home state. Baker moved to the banks of the Kern River in 1863, at what became known as Baker's Field, which became a stopover for travelers. By 1870, with a population of 600, what is now known as Bakersfield was becoming the principal town in Kern County. In 1873, Bakersfield was incorporated as a city, by 1874, it replaced the dying town of Havilah as the county seat. Alexander Mills was hired as the city marshal, a man one historian would describe as "... an old man by the time he became Marshal of Bakersfield, he walked with a cane. But he was a Kentuckian, a handy man with a gun, not lacking in initiative and resource when the mood moved him." Businessmen and others began to resent Mills, cantankerous and high-handed in his treatment of them.
Wanting to fire him but fearing reprisals, they came up with a scheme to disincorporate leaving him without an employer. According to local historian Gilbert Gia the city was failing to collect the taxes it needed for services. In 1876, the city voted to disincorporate. For the next 22 years, a citizen's council managed the community. By 1880, the town had a population of 801, by 1890, it had a population of 2,626. Migration from Texas, Louisiana and Southern California brought new residents, who were employed by the oil industry; the city reincorporated on January 11, 1898. On July 21, 1952, an earthquake struck at 4:52 am Pacific Daylight Time; the earthquake, which measured 7.5 on the moment magnitude scale and was felt from San Francisco to the Mexican border, destroyed the nearby communities of Tehachapi and Arvin. The earthquake's destructive force bent cotton fields into U shapes, slid a shoulder of the Tehachapi Mountains across all four lanes of the Ridge Route, collapsed a water tower creating a flash flood, destroyed the railroad tunnels in the mountain chain.
Bakersfield was spared. A large aftershock occurred on July 29, did minor architectural damage, but raised fears that the flow of the Friant-Kern Canal could be dangerously altered flooding the city and surrounding areas. Aftershocks, for the next month, had become normal to Bakersfield residents until, on August 22 at 3:42 pm, a 5.8 earthquake struck directly under the town's center in the most densely populated area of the southern San Joaquin Valley. Four people died in the aftershock, some of the town's historic structures sustained heavy damage. Between 1970 and 2010, Bakersfield grew 400%, making it one of the fastest-growing cities in California. Bakersfield's close proximity to mountain passes the Tejon Pass on Interstate 5 between the Los Angeles metropolis and the central San Joaquin Valley, has made the city a regional transportation hub. In 1990, Bakersfield was one of 10 U. S. communities to receive the All-America City Award from the National Civic League. In 2010, the Bakersfield MSA had a gross metropolitan product of $29.466 billion, making it the 73rd-largest metropolitan economy in the United States.
Bakersfield lies near the southern "horseshoe" end of the San Joaquin Valley, with the southern tip of the Sierra Nevada just to the east. The city limits extend to the Sequoia National Forest, at the foot of the Greenhorn Mountain Range and at the en