Did you know that there two Madelines? The first town of Madeline was located in Grasshopper Valley and established in 1874 by Merrick Cheney and George Ford. It went out of existence in the 1880s, and later became known as Yorks.
The current town of Madeline came into existence in 1902 when the Nevada-California-Oregon Railroad extended its line through the region. On October 9, 1902, the Lassen County Board of Supervisors accepted the Madeline townsite. For the next fifteen years, prosperous times were to be found at Madeline. The advent of World War I and the subsequent depression of the 1930s had a dramatic impact, not only to the town of Madeline, but to the Plains as well, as seventy percent of its population left the area.