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Millerton, Madera County, California

For the nearby place formerly with this name, see Fort Miller, California.

Millerton was the original county seat of Fresno County, formed in 1856. The county was much larger than it is today, comprising its current area plus all of what became Madera County and parts of what are now San Benito, Tulare, Kings, Inyo, and Mono counties.

Millerton, was located along the Stockton - Los Angeles Road on the south bank of the free-flowing San Joaquin River and close to Fort Miller. McCray's Ferry on the north bank of the river was the means for crossing the river at that point. Millerton became the county seat of Fresno County after becoming a focal point of commerce and mail delivery for settlers in the lower San Joaquin Valley.

The town began its decline when the San Joaquin River flooded on Christmas Eve, 1867, inundating Millerton. Some residents rebuilt, others moved. In 1872, the Central Pacific Railroad established a station for its new Southern Pacific line near a farm bounded by the present Chestnut, Belmont, Clovis and California avenues, owned by Anthony Easterby. Soon there was a store. Around the station and the store grew the town of Fresno Station, later called Fresno. Many Millerton residents, drawn by the convenience of the railroad and worried about flooding, moved to the new community.

Two years after the station was established, in 1874, county residents voted to move the county seat from Millerton to Fresno. The vote totals are Fresno 417; Lisbon 124; Centerville 123; Millerton 93. Millerton was eventually abandoned as a result.

When the Friant Dam was completed in 1944, the site of Millerton became inundated by the waters of Millerton Lake. In extreme droughts, when the reservoir shrinks, ruins of the original county seat can still be observed.

The ZIP Code is 93623. The community is inside area code 559.


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