For The Madera Tribune
Madera at the time of incorporation.
Madera’s early history has several watersheds. The town was founded in 1876; it became the county seat in 1893. Construction of the brand new granite courthouse was commenced in 1900, and the Madera Sugar Pine Lumber Company began operation in 1902. These are some of the more significant salients that protrude above the flow of history to give the reader some sense of the real stream of events that led to the present.
There is one event, however, that emerges from Madera’s past and dwarfs most everything that came before it or anything that has occurred since. Incorporation finally came in 1907.
Two years earlier, Madera had made an attempt to incorporate, but the effort failed because the property of the Madera Sugar Pine Lumber Company had been included within the proposed boundaries of the new city limits. Opposition by the powerful leaders of the lumber company caused enough voter resistance to derail the incorporation drive. By 1907, however, most of these objections had been overcome, thanks to the adroit handling of a public relations campaign by the Madera Board of Trade and the exclusion of the lumber company property from the proposed city limits.