Merced County , is a county located in the Central Valley of the state of California. As of the 2010 census, the population was
255,793.The county seat is Merced. The county is named after the Merced River.
Merced County comprises the Merced, CA Metropolitan Statistical Area, which is included in the Modesto-Merced, CA Combined Statistical Area. It is located north of Fresno and southeast of San Jose.
The county derived its name from the Merced River of El Rio de Nuestra Senora de la Merced (River of Our Lady of Mercy); named in 1806 by an expedition, headed by Gabriel Moraga, which came upon it at the end of a hot dusty ride.
County QuickFacts: Census Bureau Quick Facts
Merced County was formed in 1855 from parts of Mariposa County. Parts of its territory were given to Fresno County in 1856.
We know that Merced County was created by the Act of April 19, 1855, organized by an election held May 14 and the
votes of which were canvassed May 19, and that the first board of supervisors held their first meeting at the Turner &
Osborn Ranch on June 4. But anyone who is at all curious about the matter will want to know how it came about that there
were here along the Merced River and the creek bottoms of the eastern part of the county in this spring of 1855 enough
people to organize a new county. That is probably the most difficult question in all the county's history, at this
distance in time, to attempt to answer with anything like completeness.
It is a matter of history that Stanislaus County was formed in 1854, and it is also a matter of history that an attempt was made— and failed—to include the settlements along the Merced in that county. These settlements apparently that early had a consciousness of being a separate entity. The census of 1850 gave Mariposa County 4379, and that was for the county which extended from the Coast Range to the State's eastern boundary, and from approximately the present northern line of Mariposa and Merced to the vicinity of San Bernardino. The 1860 census gave a greatly reduced Mariposa County 6243. Tulare, Merced, and Fresno had been carved off before 1860; and this figure is the highest which any federal census gives to Mariposa. It is probable that her greatest population, some time in between these two censuses, must have exceeded the 1860 figure, and exceeded it a good deal. Old timers will tell you that there were 5000 people in Agua Fria and its twin town of Carson City when these mushroom towns were in their brief prime
According to the US Census Bureau, the county has a total area of 1,972 square miles (5,107 km2),
of which, 1,929 square miles (4,995 km2) of it is land and 43 square miles (112 km2) of it (2.19%) is
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