FRESNO, Calif. (KSEE/KGPE) – A lot of people live in Fresno…but many might not know how the city was first founded

The City of Fresno was first founded by the Pacific Railroad Company in 1872, according to historical records.

Historians say, Leland J. Stanford, a director of the railroad was on a scouting expedition and saw green in a dry prairie and said “Wonderful! Here we must build the town!”

In 1875 the Central Califonia Colony was established in present-day south Fresno. In those early days, the city was divided into 20 to 40-acre estates. The land that wasn’t designated for farming was full of drought-resistant trees and plants. The farming industry quickly brought settlers from across the country.

Over time Fresno has grown in size and population. In 1890 records say the population was around 10,000 people living in the area.

The latests statistics from the 2020 census say Fresno County’s population is just over 1 million.