The Hunter Ranch was established in the 1870s by Thomas and William Hunter at the location where the Hastings Cutoff joined the California Emigrant Trail. Before long, they controlled a massive amount of rangeland and 3,000 cattle. The harsh winter of 1889-90 devastated the herd, reducing the number to only about 900. The brothers bought a large amound of hay to save the herd, but were ultimately forced to sell all of the cattle to pay for the hay. In subsequent years they began to rebuild the herd, and in 1910, George Hunter (son of Thomas) and George Banks (raised by William) formed the Hunter-Banks partnership and took control of the ranch. A Western Pacific Railroad siding and shipping point was established in 1908. George Hunter died in 1917, and George Banks went bankrupt in 1925 losing the ranch. Since then, the ranch has passed through many hands and is still in operation.

Western Pacific Railroad
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