Fresno is a city in California, United States, the county seat of Fresno County. As of the 2010 census, the city' s population was 510,365, making it the fifth largest city in California, the largest inland city in California, and the 34th largest in the nation. Fresno is located in the center of the San Joaquin Valley of Central California, approximately 200 miles (322 km) north of Los Angeles, and 170 miles (274 km) south of the state capital, Sacramento, and 160 miles (257 km) east of Seaside on the Pacific Ocean. Metropolitan Fresno has a population of 1,107,416. The name Fresno is the Spanish language word for the ash tree, and an ash leaf is featured on the city's flag.
In 1867, Anthony Easterby purchased land bounded by the present Chestnut, Belmont, Clovis and California avenues. Unable to grow wheat for lack of water, he hired Moses J. Church in 1871 to build an irrigation canal. Church then formed the Fresno Canal and Irrigation Company, a predecessor of the Fresno Irrigation District.
In 1872, the Central Pacific Railroad established a station near Easterby's farm for its new Southern Pacific line. 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. Fresno became an incorporated city in 1885.