A Cotton Pickin' Mess In California

To outsiders, Corcoran, Calif., is known mainly for the maximum-security prison where Charles Manson is serving time. But to locals, this city of 7,775 in the San Joaquin Valley is the town that J. G. Boswell Co. built. Now headed by 68-year-old J. G. Boswell II, the founder's nephew, Boswell Co. farms 160,000 rich acres--roughly twice the size of New York's five boroughs. Most of Corcoran's townsfolk owe their livelihood to Boswell, directly or indirectly. When the city needed a $1 million baseball field or a fancy new YMCA, Boswell picked up the tab.

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