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Farmington News
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I am not going to write about Farmington this week. Instead I will be going north, about nine miles from Farmington. The name of the town is Bellota. I know most of you are familiar with Bellota. Those of you who are not, maybe it will be of interest to you. It is located on Linden and Escalon-Bellota Road.

From "Cities & Towns of San Joaquin County": Yokuts Indians considered this point a fine gathering place for acorns and hence the town received for its name the Spanish word for acorn, bellota. Even into the early twentieth century, Indian women, locally known as "Wallies," came here for acorns.

The first distinction the area attained came with the establishment of the San Joaquin Female Seminary, a short distance west of town. The two story brick building was completed in 1854, and during the following four years about one hundred students were enrolled, coming from all parts of California and West Coast points. An early advertisement stated that "the seminary is designed to afford facilities for the attainment of a thorough English and Classical education in connection with the study of ancient and modern languages."

The school lasted only four years, but the building remained for over a century and served as a warehouse for Solari's store and restaurant. In 1940, the Native Daughters unveiled a plaque outlining the historical importance of the seminary, which, during the 1850s was the only private school in this part of the state.

Growth of the town was to come later and centered upon the completion of a toll bridge across an unnamed arroyo that ran between Mormon Slough and the Calaveras River. William V. Fisher was closely identified with this bridge, which changed the wagon rout on the Mokelumne Hill Road from the Davis & Atherton Ferry east of Bellota. Over the years, six bridges have been constructed at this place. The first was only thirty feet long, but the slough gradually widened and now a 200-foot concrete span is at the junction of the Linden and Escalon-Bellota roads.

Bellota has always been associated with ranching and general farming. Due to the abundance of acorns in the area, hog raising was undertaken for decades. In the late 1870s, Latimer Farm was operated by Alfred Parker, who was a prominent importer, breeder and shipper of Berkshire swine. Occasionally, the pigs would break loose and start foraging in the gardens of residences. At least one was shot but the meat did not go to waste. Half was given the owner of the pig and the other half was used by the family whose property had been invaded.


Happy Birthday to my hubby Edward Adams, Saturday, September 22nd.

Happy Birthday wishes to Kadin Allen Bailey-Donis on Wednesday, September 26th.


I would still like to hear from you. Have you taken a trip? Have you had out of town visitors? Let me know of family birthdays, anniversaries and new arrivals to your family. Whatever you want to add to the Farmington News is welcome. Please contact me if you have items for the Farmington News column. E-mail me at or phone 896-6697.