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Kern County is the most productive oil producing county, along the branches of the Kern River Delta and hunted antelope, tule elk, deer, bear, fish, and game birds.
In 1776, Spanish missionary Father Francisco Garcés became the first European to explore the area.
The city limits extend to the Sequoia National Forest, at the foot of the Greenhorn Mountain Range and at the entrance to the Kern Canyon.
To the south, the Tehachapi Mountains, rising more than a vertical mile, feature the historic Tejon Ranch.
Bakersfield has historically referred to its regions by directional names.Rainfall averages only 6.5 inches or 165 millimetres annually, mostly falling during winter and spring.Typically, no rain falls from May through September.The area was subject to periodic flooding from the Kern River, which occupied what is now the downtown area, and experienced outbreaks of malaria.
Alexander Mills was hired as the city marshal, a man one historian would describe as "...an old man by the time he became Marshal of Bakersfield, and he walked with a cane.