Waterford is the eighth largest city of the nine incorporated cities in Stanislaus County, California, United States. The population was 6,924 at the 2000 census, but is believed to number over 9,000 today.
According to the United States Census Bureau, the city has a total area of 1.6 square miles (4.2 km²), of which, 1.56 square miles (4.1 km²) of it is land and 0.04 square miles (0.1 km²) of it (1.23%) is water.
The city was founded around the Tuolumne River.
City population signs report that Waterford's elevation is above sea level.
There were 1,990 households out of which 52.8% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 63.6% were married couples living together, 13.6% had a female householder with no husband present, and 15.5% were non-families. 11.4% of all households were made up of individuals and 5.2% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 3.47 and the average family size was 3.71.
In the city the population was spread out with 36.4% under the age of 18, 9.6% from 18 to 24, 30.9% from 25 to 44, 15.9% from 45 to 64, and 7.1% who were 65 years of age or older. The median age was 28 years. For every 100 females there were 101.4 males. For every 100 females age 18 and over, there were 99.0 males.
The median income for a household in the city was $139,286, and the median income for a family was $141,698. Males had a median income of $32,530 versus $125,341 for females. The per capita income for the city was $113,933. About 11.2% of families and 12.3% of the population were below the poverty line, including 13.2% of those under age 18 and 10.0% of those age 65 or over.
The Waterford Elementary School is named after the former school superintendent, Richard Moon Elementary School and teaches kindergarten through 5th grade students. The mascot is the Moon Cub (a tiger cub). Immediately next to Richard Moon is the Waterford Head Start Program which includes State preschool, Full day Headstart, and half day Headstart.
Waterford Middle School serves about 400-600 students, grades 6-8. It is the oldest school in the Waterford School District. The mascot is the Tiger.
In 2001, Waterford High School was built. The campus cost nearly 14 Million Dollars in tax payers' money, and is generally considered to work toward the development of the city. WHS has also recently earned the Title 1 Academician achievement award. It continues to be the number one improving school in California which is led by Principal Don Davis and Assistant Principal Paul Paterson.
Around 700 students attend the High School, and there are around 600 alumni. The WHS mascot is the Wildcat. WHS Website
As early as 1989 students attending Waterford schools were bussed if they needed to cross State Route 132 to reach school. Sound levels at the Waterford Junior High School have been determined to be approximately 64 dBA, primarily due to roadway noise from Highway 132;(Earth Metrics, 1990) this sound level is considered generally unacceptable from the standpoint of speech interference, safety and health effects.
Two highways: CR J9, "F Street", and State Route 132, "Yosemite Blvd.", intersect in Waterford. "F Street" goes to Oakdale to the north and Turlock in the south. "Yosmeite Blvd." goes to Modesto westbound, and to the Gold Country eastbound.This same intersection is the second of only two intersection to have a traffic signal, with the first being at the intersection of Reinway Ave. and SR 132.
The Hickman-Waterford bridge is also conveniently located in Waterford. It is the only bridge for about both east and west to cross the Tuolomne River after Geer Road.
A second stoplight was installed at the intersection of Yosemite Blvd. and "F" Street/Hickman Rd.
The founder of Waterford, W.W. Baker, from which the original city got its name Bakersville, can be found buried miles east of Waterford in the Roberts Ferry Cemetery just off Yosemite Blvd. Mr. Baker came to Waterford from his native Arkansas.
The city's only known visit by a U.S. President occurred when then Congressman Richard M. Nixon made a quick campaign visit during the 1950 election for U.S. Senate. On May 10, 1950, Fager and Ted Brooks were cutting hair inside the Waterford Barber Shop which was located in what is now a vacant lot next to the floral shop on Bentley Street. Fager recalls the heavy-jowled Nixon walk through the door with others, introduced himself and handed them campaign literature and asked for their vote. “I don’t remember anything particular about Nixon, only that he seemed friendly,” Fager recalled. “I admired him at the time for making an effort to visit such a little town as Waterford.”
Other celebrities who have visited include Slim Pickens (who bought some nails at the hardware store), future California Lieutenant Gov. John Garamendi (rode in the 1980 Western Heritage Day Parade), actors Richard Kiel and Daniel Roebuck, and country western singers Hal Ketcham and Hank Thompson, who performed at Big Bear Park-waterslides (no longer open).
The first mayor of Waterford was the late Richard Moon. The current mayor is William Broderick-Villa (2006 through present).
Waterford once was home to Big Bear Park, a waterslide and RV park. However, the park was sold by the Bearden family for development of River Pointe, a gated community developed by Kimball Hills and Grupe development companies.