Havilah was the first county seat of Kern County in 1866 but was moved to Bakersfield in 1874. Bakersfield was named for Col. Thomas Baker, who arrived in 1862 to direct a reclamation project. He layed out the town in 1869. With the discovery of gold in the Kern river Canyon Bakersfield became a rough and tough camp as bad as any on the Mother Lode. in 1889 fire destroyed most of the old town; rebuilding resulted in a more modern town. Oil was found here in 1899 and this started another boom. Today great fields of cotton, potaotes and other farm products may be seen. Bakersfield is located at the southern end of the great San Joaquin Valley.