Jefferson James was a man of some business savvy.

At around the turn of the century – that’s the 20th century, by the way, he bought a lot of land around here for a quarter an acre, 25 cents an acre.

Why the bargain basement price?

Well, it was all a swamp around here.

It was so close to the mighty San Joaquin River that it would flood out all the time.

But Jefferson had a plan.

He was buying up land from homesteaders in the area.

Some of them had fallen on hard times during dry years, and in a couple of cases it was because they were completely washed out during the floods of 1892 and 1906.

The point is: he was buying up a lot of the land in the area.

Well, Jefferson and his son-in-law W.C. Graves worked hard on a land reclamation project here.

That protected the area from the annual floodwaters of the San Joaquin River.

And it also made sure that all this land would be prime for farming once an irrigation system was put in place.

In 1910, Jefferson passed away and his land was divided into plots and sold.

It was described as being “as fertile as a garden”.

And one of those areas was called “Tranquillity Colony”.

And so, Tranquillity claimed a spot on the map of Fresno County.

Oh by the way, did you notice the double-L spelling of the word Tranquillity?

Well, why did they do it like that?

No one really knows.

With Joe Whittington behind the camera, I’m AJ Fox