Fresno, Tulare and Kern Counties, California




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ELWOOD OLIVER LARKINS, a member i of the bar of Tulare County and president 1 of the Board of Trade of the city of Visalia, was born in East Liverpool, Ohio, December 16, 1854 His father, John Boles Larkins, was a native of Birmingham, Pennsylvania, born in 1832. His grandfather, Henry Larkins, who was many years a business man of Pittsburg, Pennsylvania, removed to East Liverpool, Ohio, where he died in 1858. He had married Miss Mary Oliver, a native of Pennsylvania and a relative of the Honorable Oliver P. Morton. Mr. Elwood Oliver Larkins' father, John Boles Larkins, was their fourth son, there being five sons and two daughters, namely: Curtis, Joseph, James, John Boles, H. M., Jane and Elizabeth. Henry Larkins, the great-grandfather of the subject of this sketch, was born in the north of Ireland, but came from England to America before the Revolution, and was a soldier in the struggle for independence. John Boles Larkins and his brothers, Joseph and James, were interested in starting the Liverpool Crockery Works, still owned and managed by the Sebring Bros., cousins of Elwood Oliver Larkins. Curtis Larkins was largely interested with the McDonald boys in the line of steamers running from Pittsburg to Cincinnati. John Boles Larkins married Miss Letitia McKee, of East Liverpool, Ohio, whose father was interested in business with Aaron Burr in Pittsburg. She died when her son, the subject of this sketch, was fourteen months old. John Boles Larkins was again married, to Miss Phoebe De Witte, of West Virginia, and by her had six children. One of their sons, T. B. Larkins, is a conductor on the Chicago, Burlington & Quincy railroad.


In 1876 Mr. Elwood Oliver Larkins graduated from the North Missouri State normal school at Kirksville. He was then elected principal of the schools at Laclede, Missouri, but resigned the position and came to California that same year, arriving at Visalia August 18. From that time until 1880 he alternately taught school and studied law. In 1880 he returned to Missouri, and was married to Miss Sallia C. Callaway, of Waverly, Missouri, whose acquaintance he formed when at school, she being a graduate of the same class in 1876. She is a descendant of Flanders Callaway, who settled at Booneville, Missouri, with Daniel Boone. The Callaway family, originally from the State of Mississippi, were related to Daniel Boone. Mr. and Mrs. Larkins have four daughters, viz.; Zoe Portie, born in Fresno; Carol Letitia, Addie Tipton, and Cassandra Callaway, born in Visalia.


After practicing law thirteen months in Fresno, Mr. Larkins was admitted to the Supreme Court of California, and has been practicing most of the time since in Visalia, being associated with the Hon. Tipton Lindsey for the past five years; was formerly in partnership with the Hon. J. F. Wharton, of Fresno city. Mr. Larkins is not a partisan, but has generally associated himself with the Republican party in national and State issues, and has been a member of the County Central Committee on several occasions. He stumped Sutter County, California; and a portion of the adjoining counties for Governor Perkins, and during the last campaign stumped Tulare County in favor of Governor Markham. He has passed all the chains in the I. 0. 0. F., is a member of the A. 0.. U. W., and has represented his lodge in the Grand Lodge on several occasions.


Mr. Larkins is now identified with the county of Tulare, and is somewhat interested in fruit culture, having great faith in the resources of the county. He is one of the many who have become convinced that the people, if they desire to attain higher prosperity, must raise such products as can be sold in the markets of the world. He believes that Tulare County and especially the lands adjoining Visalia are particularly adapted to the production of stone fruits, the value of which, when once realized by the people of the East, will give the fruit-growers of their county a ready and remunerative sale for their products in the Eastern markets.


J B BATZ - of Onyx, was born in Fulton County, Indiana, in a town near Rochester, January 25, 1852, a son of Benjamin Batz, a millwright and a native of Pennsylvania, who located in Indiana about 1845.  He was married September 26, 1848, to Miss Clarissa S. Rice, a native of . Ohio, born September 19, 1828. They brought up six children,—three sons and three daughters, of whom J. B., our subject, is the second born.


His father having died in February, 1863, leaving a widow and four children, he left home at about fifteen years of age and learned the trade of carpenter in Indiana, and followed the same until he was twenty-one. In 1874 he came to California, having spent two years in Kansas, where he followed his trade and clerked in a general merchandise store. Upon coming to California he spent two months in Sacramento County, following his trade. He then came to Kern County and was employed by W. W Landers two years and nine months; next he clerked in Kernville fur J. J. Murphy fifteen months, then for I. Michels at the Big Blue Mine store three years. He also located a ranch (now Patrick O'Brien's), of 240 acres, proved up on the same and sold it to O'Brien Bros. He clerked for Scodie until the fall of 1888. In 1889–'90 he was under sheriff, appointed by Sheriff W. J. Graham; since' then. he has clerked for Mr. Scodie. He now has a 160-acre ranch, on which is a good new residence. Mr. and Mrs. Batz took a trip East in 1887. Her maiden name was Sophia E. Smith, and they were married December 24, 1879. They have had three children, two of whom are living,—Daisy M. and Vernon S. St. Clair S. died in infancy.


He is a representative Odd Fellow, having become a member of Kernville Lodge, No. 251, in 1879; has held every office in the lodge, and has represented it four times in the Grand Lodge of- California,-1882, 1889, 1890 and 1891. He is the present District Deputy and Grand Master. He is a member of the A. O. U. W., which was organized in Kernville, 1879, and consolidated about three years ago with Justice Lodge, No. 81, located in Bakersfield, and in this lodge he has filled the principal offices.

LEOPOLD GUNDELFINGER, the efficient cashier of the Bank of Central California, is a native of Germany, born in Wurtemburg, March 22, 1853. At the age of thirteen he emigrated to America, settled in New York and there received his education. He entered upon a business career in La Crosse, Wisconsin, from which place he went to McGregor, Iowa. April 1, 1872, is the date of Mr. Gundelfinger's arrival on the Pacific coast. After stopping a few months in San Francisco, he opened an establishment in Plumas County, in the northern part of California. He came to Fresno on the 1st of July, 1874, accepted a position in the store of Jacob & Co., and remained with that firm several years. While in their employ he went to Kingsburg and opened a branch store, of which he had the management for eight years, until it was closed out. After that he spent a year in Europe, returning to California the latter part of 1886. About this time the present flourishing Bank of Central California was established, and he became one of its directors and the cashier, positions which he still fills. He is also one of the stockholders of the corporation of Louis Einstein & Co., the well-known pioneer store of Fresno. In a quiet and unassuming way Mr. Gundelfinger has been closely identified with the interests of this city. He organized the fire department in Fresno, for a long time having in charge the hook and ladder company. September 15, 1887, he wedded Miss Minnie Rowe. They have one child, a daughter.

B T. ALFORD, Fresno, was born in Ralls County, Missouri, in 1853. His father, James L. Alford, was 'extensively engaged in general farming and stock-raising, owning 400 acres of land.


The subject of our sketch was educated in the subscription schools of Missouri, and subsequently took a business course at Heald's Business College, San Francisco. He came to California in 1871, and was employed in Fresno County on the stock-ranch of his uncle, J. G. James, for one year. He then bought 500 sheep and continued in the business two years. At the end of that time his flock numbered 1,600 sheep; and he sold out, clearing $2,500. All this occurred before he reached his twenty- first year. In 1875 he bought 100 horses and drove them to Battle Mountain, Nevada, but in this venture he lost money. He returned to Fresno County in 1877 and took charge of his uncle's ranch, remaining on it until 1887 and still having the management of it in connection with his other business.


In 1888 Mr. Alford started a market on Fresno street, between I and J streets, and in 1889 sold a one-half interest in it to J. W. Coffman, and since then they have been doing a prosperous wholesale and retail business under the firm name of Alford & Coffman. They own 640 acres of land in the western part of the county, which is stocked with 400 head of cattle.


Mr. Alford was married in Missouri, in 1875, to Miss Dellie Briggs. They have three children, Lena May, Claude and Onida, all living at home. Mr. Alford was appointed a member of the City Council, December 1, 1890, to fill the unexpired term of J. N. Albin, deceased. He is a member of Fresno Lodge, No. 247, F. & A. M., and of Yo Semite Lodge, No. 171, A. 0. U. W.

WILLIAM JETER PRATHER, oldest son of Rev. R. R. Prather, native of North Carolina, was born May 11, 1827. The family home was in Guilford County, where the subject of our sketch lived until he reached his twentieth year, attending public and also private schools at various times. At the age of twenty he went to Florida on a prospecting tour, remaining, however, Only a short time. Returning North, he made a visit to the western district of Tennessee, where he had relatives and where he lived for eight months.


In the spring of 1849 he crossed the plains to California, the trip to the Sacramento river consuming six months. He engaged in mining more or less for three years, and then settled in Yolo County, took up a tract of 160 acres of land and turned his attention to farming. After living there six years, he went to Sacramento, where he commenced the study of dentistry. In the absence of a dental college, he was obliged to seek private instruction, and located himself with prominent members of the profession both in Sacramento and Woodland. He was one of the pioneers of the latter place, having built a house there before the town was incorporated. After practicing for a number of years in Woodland, Dr. Prather came to Fresno County on a tour of inspection. He located a piece of farming land and lived on it for a few months; returned to Woodland in the fall of 1878, closed up his matters there, and in the fall of 1880 came to Fresno County, where he has continued to reside ever since. It was not until 1883, however, that the Doctor located in Fresno. He then opened his dental office in the Donahoo building, where he remained for some time. Then he removed to the Fiske building, and remained there until burned out in 1888, and thence came to his present headquarters in the Fresno Loan & Savings Bank building. He has a large and lucrative practice, and stands high in the profession. The Doctor has a small vineyard and also a stock-farm adjacent to the city, in which he takes a great interest.


His first marriage was in October, 1853, to Miss Margaret Lawson, a native of Missouri, by whom he had nine children, six of whom are now living. Mrs. Prather died in 1879, and December 13, 1883, Dr. Prather wedded Miss Mary Healey, a native of Wisconsin. This union has been blessed with two children—a girl and a boy.


He enjoys the distinction of being one of the pioneers of California, and is a member of the Pioneer Society of San Francisco. He is also a member, and one of organizers of California State Dental Association.

H ST. GEORGE HOPKINS, M. D., Fresno, a descendant of John Hopkins; of Revolutionary fame, was born in Winchester, Virginia, in October, 1835. His grandfather, John Hopkins, was a Colonel in the Revolutionary war, being in command of the Third Virginia regiment. He met and whipped Colonel Tarleton, of the English service, regarding which Tarleton speaks in his memoirs as being the only time he was ever whipped. Before the war Colonel Hopkins was a receiver of titles and money, under the Georges, for the country then known as the great Northwestern Territory. John Hopkins, the father of our subject, was born at "Hill and Dale," his father's plantation, and became an eminent lawyer of Virginia, practicing in all the courts through the State. He was a Democrat and was frequently urged to accept public office, but he considered his professional duties too extensive and important to be given up, and continued in the practice of law until the time of his death in 1842.


Young Hopkins attended the private schools of Virginia, and was also a student in the University of Virginia and the University of  Pennsylvania, being a graduate of that institution. From the latter he graduated in the academic and medical courses in 1855, after which he lived in hospitals for eighteen months as physician and surgeon. He then went to sea, employed by the Government as surgeon, and for three years his time was spent on the North Sea, the North Atlantic and between New York and Liverpool. In 1859 he settled in Philadelphia, where he engaged in the practice of his profession n until the opening of the war. Being a Southern gentleman, lie went South and enlisted in the Stonewall Brigade, and was made a commissioned officer with rank of Major. He served through the war; was on the staff of several Generals in the Confederate service; was on General Daniel Ruggles' staff when he surrendered at Atlanta, Georgia.


In May, 1865, Dr. Hopkins went to Winchester, Virginia, on parole, and having secured the second executive clemency issued by President Johnson, at the request of Major-General Hancock, Major-General Torbert and Major- General Ayers, he went tri Baltimore in 'October, 1865, and again took up the practice of medicine, remaining there until 1870. In that year, by request of William Nye, Republican Senator from Nevada, he came West, located at Virginia City, Nevada, and engaged in practice there for eight years. In 1878 he removed to Oakland, California, and made his home there until 1881, when he came to Fresno.


The Doctor was married in Baltimore in 1866, to Miss Catharine Dunnington, a lady noted for her beauty and amiable qualities. She died in Oakland in 1880, leaving four children. To escape painful associations and settle among his own countrymen, the Southern people, Dr. Hopkins came to Fresno. For a time he led a quiet life, but gradually resumed practice and finally opened an office, and is now actively engaged in professional work. At this place, in 1886, lie wedded Miss Annie M. Foster, a native of California, and by her has two children.


The Doctor is a prominent Mason, having reached the thirty-second degree in that 22nd order. He was Deputy Inspector and delegate to the Supreme Council of the Earth. He has also taken the Scarlet and Patriarch degrees of the I. O. O. F., and is a member of the A. 0. U. W.

RICHARD HOOPER, deceased, was a native of Cornwall, England, and a carpenter by trade. He was born August 7, 1825, and emigrated to America in 1856. He was married in England, and brought with him to this country his wife and one child, the former dying soon after his arrival in Illinois. For his second wife he chose Miss Jane Cox, who was born in Marion, Williamson County, Illinois, April 14, 1842, daughter of Thomas Cox of that place.


By this latter union five children were born, two in California, and the older ones in Illinois, viz.: Thomas R., .January 31, 1866; Elizabeth J., September 23, 1867; John L., February 19, 1870; Bertha E., March 29, 1879; and Albert M., July 7, 1881.


In 1870 Mr. Hooper came to California, and located in Tulare, where he worked at his trade about eight months. He then removed to Kernville, Kern County, and engaged on a modest scale in merchandising, at the same time pursuing his trade.


Richard Hooper, a man of industry and frugal habits, left to his family the imperishable legacy of an honorable name, and they sustain the good reputation they have ever borne in the community. They have received liberal schooling; and have thus far taken honorable places in the business world. J. L. is at the head of the mercantile house of J. L. Hooper & Co., Kern- vine; and Thomas R. is a graduate of Heald's Business College in &in Francisco, attended the State Normal School at San Jose, and is a member of the Kern County Board of Education. Elizabeth J., the eldest daughter, is an accomplished young lady, a graduate of the same school, and is a proficient stenographer. Others of the family are studious and aspiring.

O J. MEADE was born in Brunswick County, Virginia, in 1848, and was educated in the Virginia Military Institute. In January, 1861, he enlisted in Company I, Third Regiment Virginia Cavalry, and joined Wickhatn's Brigade in the Army of Virginia. He served valiantly in many important engagements, among which was the battle of Five Forks. Twice he was wounded, not, however, being disabled. At the time of the general surrender he was off on scout duty, but came in later and surrendered.


After the war closed Mr. Meade engaged in farming in Brunswick County, Virginia, con-. tinning there until December, 1868, when he started for California, making the voyage via the Isthmus of Panama, and landing at San Francisco on the first day of February, 1869. From there he went to Stanislaus County with Colonel Dailey, and was on a stock ranch until 1871, when he returned to Virginia to visit friends. In 1872 he came back to California, went to the Dancy ranch and worked there a year, coming to Fresno County in 1873. Here he superintended the stock ranch of Friedlander 63 Chapman until 1877, and then for a short time bad charge of J. D. Patterson's sheep ranch, of about 10,000 sheep. Next he was employed to superintend the grain and stock ranch of W. S. Chapman, remaining there until 1879, when he was elected Constable. He held that office until 1884, was then elected Sheriff and Tax Collector of the county, and re-elected in 1886. Mr. Meade bought property on Mariposa street, Fresno, in 1878, which is now very valuable. He also owns a number of lots at the corner of H and Tuolumne streets, where his residence is located.


Mr. Meade was married in Plainsberg, Merced County, California, in 1876, to Miss Ada Bidford, a native of the Golden State. Their union has been blessed with two children.

A. HARALSON, one of the leading members of the bar of Kern County) has been a resident of California since 1879. He was born in West Point, Troup County, Georgia, October 17, 1853. His father, John A. Haralson, was by occupation a civil engineer and farmer, and his mother, nee Elizabeth Rison, was born in Mississippi, a daughter of Richard A. Rison, late of Tehachapi, Kern County, California.


Mr. Haralson was educated in the University of Georgia, at Athens, finishing the junior course of study in 1876. He then studied law and taught school; was admitted to the bar of the Supreme Court of that State in 1873, and to the bar of the State of California in March, 1880.
Before leaving Georgia Mr. Haralson was married, in that State, in 1879, to Miss Arrie C., daughter of Eli Davis, a large cotton planter of White Sulphur Springs. They have three children,—John A., Arrie C. and Alexander Hamilton.

WILLIAM B. WALLACE.—Among the prominent citizens of Tulare County who are deserving of more than a passing notice on these pages, is the gentleman whose name heads this sketch,—an honorable member of the bar of Tulare County, and Superintendent of the Visalia schools.


Mr. Wallace was born in Platte City, Platte County, Missouri, May 1, 1849. His father, a physician by profession, was a native of Virginia, the descendant of Scotch ancestors, who settled in the Old Dominion at an early day. His mother, nee Hester Ann Frizell, was born in Kentucky. Her ancestors were English people, who came to the . colonies with Lord Baltimore and settled in Maryland. In 1849 Dr. Wallace Caine to California and located in Placerville with his wife and two little children, a son and daughter, of whom William B. was the youngest. A year later the father died. The mother survived him seven years, her death occurring in 1858. 


Young Wallace was thrown upon his own resources at the age of ten years. He attended the public schools of Sacramento County, and also the State normal school. His higher education, however, lie has by reading and study obtained. himself, he being what might be termed a self-educated man, with superior mental attainments. For some years he was engaged in teaching in Sacramento, El Dorado and Amador counties, and during that time took up the study of law. He came to Tulare County in 1876, and to Visalia in 1881, being admitted to the bar in 1882, and at once entering upon the practice of his profession. In 1884 he was elected on the Democratic ticket District Attorney, and served two years. Since then he has had his office in the courthouse, where he continues the practice of law. He has several times been elected to city offices, and was chosen to fill his present position,—that of Superintendent of City Schools,—in 1890. He was a member of the city council when the fine school edifice of Visalia was planned and built, and to its erection he gave his earnest support.


Mr. Wallace was married in 1884 to Miss Mary A. McCutchan, a native of California. by whom he has two children,—a son and daughter,—Bruce and Ethel. He owns the pleasant home in which he resides with his family.

JUDGE J. F. WHARTON.—among the honored deceased of Fresno County, we find the name of Judge J. F. Wharton.
He was born in Clermont County, Ohio, August 3, 1844, son of W. S. Wharton, a tanner and saddler. In 1856 his father and family moved to Shelby County, Missouri, where, in connection with farming, he carried on his trade, and under his instruction young Wharton learned saddlery and harness-making. They purchased tanned goods of Jesse Grant, father of U. S. Grant, who was an intimate friend of our subject and under whose advise he chose the profession of law.


At the breaking out of the war, though but seventeen years of age, Mr. Wharton volunteered in the Union army, the Fourteenth Missouri Cavalry, and remained in service to the end of that memorable struggle. A youth though he was, his natural adaptability to military service soon brought him promotion, and for brave and soldierly bearing he won the office of Lieutenant of the company in which he entered as a private. He was in some of the most heated contests and was the recipient of many encomiums from
General Vandever and all the officers of the company.


At the close of the war he attended the Missouri State Normal School at Kirksville. After graduating he engaged in teaching for six years, being unusually successful, and at the end of that time turned his attention to the study of law, his youthful ambition.
The Judge was married in Shelby County, Missouri, March 27, 1870, to Miss Mary L. Hatfield, and in 1873 they moved to Nebraska, where they remained until the spring of 1875. Then on account of the failing health of his wife, he moved to California and settled in Colusa, where he became interested in the publication of the Colusa Independent, a weekly paper which ranked well among the weekly journals of the day. His wife's health continued to fail. He sold his business interests and devoted all his time to caring for her until her death, which occurred in the fall of 1876. He again engaged in teaching, at the same time pursuing the study of law and becoming interested in politics. Though in a strongly Democratic community, as a Republican he became favorably known to the people of that county June 16, 1878, he was married at Colusa to Mrs. Fannie E. Turner, who survives him, as also do their five children, who reside at home. Previous to his marriage he was admitted to practice in the courts.


In 1881 Judge Wharton moved his family to Fresno. His talent in the practice of law won for him many clients, and his courteous bearing among his fellow men gained for him numerous friends. In 1882 he received the Republican nomination for Assemblyman, and, notwithstanding the minority of his party in the county of over 700, he was elected by a substantial majority.. He served` the county earnestly, faithfully and creditably in the Legislature, and his services earned. for him the universal respect and confidence of the people, which he retained to the time of his death. In 1886 lie received the nomination for District Attorney, but his impaired health prevented his making any effort to secure the election, though he carried more than his party strength. In 1886 he formed a co-partnership with his nephew, F. H. Short, for the practice of law. As a member of the Fresno Irrigating Committee, which occupied one entire session of the Legislature at Sacramento, Mr. Wharton had much to do in shaping the irrigation laws of the State.


In June, 1888, Judge Wharton was attacked with sciatic rheumatism, and after a lingering and painful illness he passed away in March, 1889. The Bar Association met on the day of the funeral and, after passing appropriate resolutions, court was adjourned, and in a body the Bar attended the funeral services.

, a rancher and one of the Assesors of Kern County, California, is a native of County Down, Ireland. He was born November 20, 1848, and in 1866 emigrated to America with his uncle, Dr. Breeze, a physician of San Francisco.


Mr. Martin came from Los Angeles to Kern County in 1873. He is a druggist and chemist by occupation and followed the business in San Francisco and Los Angeles and latterly in Kern County at Havilah. The years 1866 to 1870 Mr. Martin spent in San Francisco. At Havilah he was associated with Dr. Sweet in the drug business in 1874. Since then he has devoted his time and attention to farming and mining in Kern County, and has been very successful in his undertakings. He owns 160 acres of land on section 28, in the South Fork valley. At present Mr. Martin is Deputy Assessor of Kern County, under A. T. Lightner.


R. EDWIN FREEMAN was born in Milton, Queen's County, Nova Scotia, January 1, 1834. His ancestors were of a branch of the Freeman family that emigrated from England to Massachusetts, settling at Cape Cod during the colonial period, and thence re-- moved to Nova Scotia.
After completing his collegiate education he turned his attention to the study of medicine. In 1854 he went to Cincinnati, Ohio, where his elder brother, a physician, was residing, and, pursuing his studies, graduated in medicine in 1857. He was the Demonstrator of Anatomy until 1860, when he was appointed Professor of Anatomy in the Eclectic Medical Institute of Cincinnati. In the summer of 1862 he served as Assistant Surgeon with the Second Regiment, Home Guards, on duty at Covington and Newport, Kentucky, for the defense of Cincinnati. November 7, 1862, after examination by the Medical Board at Washington city, he was appointed Assistant Surgeon, United States Volunteers, by President Lincoln, and ordered for duty with the Army of the Potomac then before Fredericksburg, Virginia. Assigned to duty with the artillery of the Ninth Army Corps, he participated in that memorable battle. He was with that army corps at Fortress Monroe and Newport News, on the James river, and then for several months in' the summer of 1863 in central Kentucky. He was appointed a member of the Board of Examiners for Assistant Surgeons, United States Volunteers, to meet at Cincinnati, Ohio; hut, his orders having been changed, he went with the Ninth Army Corps to Vicksburg, Mississippi, where, under General Sherman, they were interposed between Grant and Johnson who were endeavoring to raise the siege. He was there prostrated with the fever which was then so prevalent, but recovered and returned with the troops to the North. He was with the same command in East Tennessee, and was in the siege of Knoxville and the battle of Fort Sanders, December, 1863, After that he was on duty in the hospital at Knoxville. In February, 1864, he was ordered to Columbus, Ohio, for duty in the hospitals. March 30, he was commissioned by the President as Surgeon, United States Volunteers. Continued ill health caused him to offer his resignation from the service, which was accepted April 19, 1864.


In June, 1864, he was married to Miss Rosella A. Ricker, eldest daughter of Major El- bridge G. Ricker, of Locust Corner, Clermont County, Ohio. In 1866 he was appointed Professor of Anatomy in the Eclectic Medical College of the city of New York, and removed to that place. In 1870 he was appointed Professor of Surgery in the same college. In 1871 he was again appointed Professor of Anatomy , in the Eclectic Medical Institute at Cincinnati, and, as the harsh air of the coast did not agree with him, he returned to Cincinnati. lie continued lecturing in the college and attending to the demands of a large practice until 1887, when failing health led him to give up his business and seek a change of climate. He came to California and directly to Fresno. He bought a ranch near the city and built a house, where he resides with his family. In the city he has an office, where, with his son, Dr. E. R. Freeman, he is engaged in the practice of medicine and surgery. His family consists of two sons, E. R. and Z. F. Freeman, and one daughter, Zella M. Freeman.


During the period of his residence here the Doctor has witnessed great changes in Fresno and surrounding country. The rapid extension of vineyards and orchards in this valley and the remarkable growth of Fresno are subjects upon which too much cannot be said. The Doctor regards this climate as favorable for those suffering with pulmonary troubles.


S. BADGER, Deputy County Clerk of Fresno County, is a native of Cold  Springs, Mississippi, born in 1865. He came to California with his parents in 1871 and located at Cottonwood, Shasta County, where his father, Charles T. Badger, carried on a general merchandise store. In 1873 they moved to Madera, Fresno County, where he operated Captain Mace's hotel and remained until 1885, then coming to Fresno.


The subject of our sketch was educated in the public schools of Fresno County, combining work and study as opportunity offered_ In the spring of 1881 he was employed in Fresno by A. M. Clark, County Clerk and Recorder, and did office work in summer and attended school in winter for a period of three years. He returned to Madera in 1885, started a notion store and conducted it successfully until he was burned out in 1887; came. back to Fresno, was appointed Deputy Sheriff under 0. J Meade, and served in that capacity until the expiration of Mr. Meade's term of office in 1888. Mr. Badger made a visit to his brother in Washington Territory that year. Returning to Fresno in 1889, he was appointed Deputy County Clerk, under A. C. Williains, and is now occupying that position.


Mr. Badger was married in Fresno, July 8, 1888, to Miss Mary E. Funderburk, and resides in a comfortable home on Abbey street. He is a member of Company F, Sixth Infantry, National Guards of California, Captain C. Chisholm hi command.


N P. PETERSON, it is safe to say, is one of the most enterprising business men of Kern County. Few have been as active in building up and developing the material interests of the Kern river country as he. Mr. Peterson is a native of Denmark, born in  Lasoe October 10, 1841. His father being a sailor, the son was reared in that calling and followed the sea for many years. He shipped from Hamburg to San Francisco on board a merchant vessel in 1862,-eligaged about one year in the United States Revenue service, and in 1864 abandoned the sea. He devoted his time to mining in the Kern river district one year; later, about six months, in Havilah. For two years lie operated a stationary engine in a
quartz mill at Havilah, after which he returned to Kernville and engaged in the same calling for a brief time. He was then interested there in various enterprises until 1872, when he built and conducted a hotel, doing an extensive business. This he discontinued in 1884, and spent the year following in the northern part of the State.


In 1885 Mr. Peterson bought his ranch on the South Fork of the Kern river. Of this farm 320 acres are in section 20, township 26, range 24, and 200 acres are in sections 17 and 18. He owns other line tracts of land in Kern County, making a total of 1,100 acres. He ranges about 300 head of cattle, thirty horses and forty pigs, and there are few ranches in the country superior to his. In addition to his agricultural interests Mr. Peterson also owns and operates the stage line running from Caliente to Kernville; also a line running from the latter place to Onyx, making tri-weekly trips. And in connection with this business he has the contract for carrying the United States mail.
Mr. Peterson stands high in the public estimation as a prompt and scrupulous business man.

LEWIS M. HOWELL, one of the reputable farmers of Tulare County, California, is a native of Missouri, born in St. Charles County, August 19, 1831. His father, Thomas Howell, was born in South Carolina, March 14, 1783, and removed to St. Louis, Missouri, 1797, when that city was a small place. His ancestors ranked among the old families of South Carolina, and two of the Howells were officers in the Indian wars. Thomas Howell marriedSusana Calloway, daughter of Flanders Calloway, and granddaughter of Daniel Boone, the famous Kentucky pioneer. They became the parents of fourteen children, seven sons and seven daughters. All grew to maturity and five are now (1891) living. The subject of our sketch was next to the youngest child. He was reared and educated in Missouri, and for some time was engaged in steam-boating on the river. In 1864 he went to Montana, where he spent fourteen years. During that time he was engaged in the mercantile and flouring-mill business, had a large trade, and filled many Government contracts. He was also engaged in the stock business.,


Mr. Howell married Elizabeth J. Wallace, also a native of St. Charles County, Missouri, and to them were born eight children, seven of whom are living. Their names are as follows: Maggie, wife of John G. Lewis; Willie; Lizzie, wife of James M. Cann; Lewis, Eliza, Mary and Charles.
In 1878 Mr. Howell came to California and settled in San Jose; three years later sold out and removed to Healdsburg, Sonoma County, where he invested in property and lived three years. At the end of that time he sold out and returned to Sin Jose, which continued to be his home until 1884, when he located in Tulare County. He then purchased his present ranch, 240 acres of land within the city limits of Visalia. This is chiefly a hay and stock farm. Mr. Howell has forty dairy cows, and makes large quantities of cheese. Across the street from his place is a commodious and well-equipped cheese factory. His property is well improved with good home and substantial farm buildings, and all the surroundings indicate thrift and prosperity. Mr. Howell is a Master Mason, and in politics is a Democrat.

FRANCIS M. SPONOGLE, M. D., who holds a prominent position among the physicians of Fresno, was born at Millersburg, Ohio, in 1852, son of Joshua Sponogle, an extensive farmer and stock-raiser, also principal of the high school for a number of years, being a highly educated gentleman, speaking German and French fluently.


The Doctor was educated in the Millersburg high school and in the Academy of Science at Hayesville. He began his medical studies at Millersburg in 1870, under the instruction of Dr. William M. Ross, a prominent physician and surgeon of that locality. During the winters of 1873, 1874 and 1875 he was a student in the medical department of the University of Wooster at Cleveland, Ohio. In 1875 he began practicing in order to secure funds to finish his studies, which he did in 1876, graduating at Wooster University.


After completing his college course, the Doctor came West, located at Battle Mountain, Nevada, and was there engaged in the practice of his profession until 1881. He was appointed County Physician for Lander County, Nevada, which position he held for five years, and resigned when he came to California. On coming to this State he settled in Healdsburg, Sonoma County, continuing his practice at that place till 1884. Feeling the need of a higher education, he then went to New York and attended lectures at the Long Island College Hospital, graduating in 1885. After that lie attended the New York Polyclinic, taking a full course and receiving from that school a certificate as an honorary and life member, and receiving a diploma. In the fall of 1885 he entered the Bellevue Hospital College, took a full course of lectures, performed hospital work, and received a diploma in the spring of 1886. He also took four special courses on surgery and four courses on physical diagnosis and diseases of women, receiving special diplomas from English, German and French specialists. A special course on urinary analysis and medical and toxological. chemistry, under the instruction of Professor Ogden Doremus, of Bellevue Hospital College; also, a special course on histology and pathology and use of the microscope, and a special course on the eye, ear and throat under foreign and American teachers. He stood so high in surgery at Bellevue that Professor Dennis selected him and one other from a class of 165 to perform a difficult case of surgery before the class. During the summer of 1886 he took a full coarse of lectures in the New York Post-Graduate School, and received his diploma in the fall of 1886.


Having thus carefully prepared himself in the East for his professional duties, Dr. Sponogle returned to the Pacific coast, and again began practice at Healdsburg. He was married in 1886 to Miss Libbie Briggs, a native of California, a very estimable young lady and highly educated. In April, 1888, he moved to Fresno and established himself in a spacious office in the Griffith building, and in this city he has continued to reside, actively engaged in the practice of his chosen profession. He is an active member of both State and county medical societies.


Since coming to Fresno County." Dr. Sponogle has invested in ranch and city property. He resides at No. 1332 J street. In fraternal circles the Doctor is also prominent, being a member of Santa Rosa Chapter, No. 45, Royal Arch Masons; the subordinate lodge and encampment of I. 0. 0. F.; Vineland Lodge, K. of P., and the Raisina Chapter, No. 86, Eastern Star. He is also connected with the Mono Tribe, No. 68, I. O. R. M., and Fresno Lodge, No. 3455, Knights of Honor, being District Deputy of the latter lodge, and District Medical Examiner; also Medical Examiner for the German Lodge of Hermann's Siihne for the city of Fresno.

WILLIAM. H. SCRIBNER, who figures prominently in the history of Bakersfield, California, was born in Greenville, Darke County, Ohio, July 27, 1849. His father, Franklyn Scribner, was a native of the same place, and a son of Abraham Scribner, who located there in 1811. The latter was a pioneer merchant, Indian trader and land speculator.


He took an active part in the Indian wars of the northwestern territory, and has been pointed out in history as the man who, under Colonel
Richard M. Johnson, killed the noted Indian chief, Tecumseh. Franklyn Scribner grew up on the frontier, learned the shoemaker's trade,
and succeeded his father as a merchant in his native town. When the civil war broke out he left home and business and enlisted his

services for the protection of the old flag and the preservation of the Union, acting the part of a brave soldier until the close of that' struggle.
After the war he returned home, resumed business and continued therein until during the declining years of his life. He is now living in
quietude in the beautiful little city of Greenville. To him and his wife, nee Elizabeth Young, five children were born, William H. being the
oldest. The others are: Edwin F., a merchant of Downey, this State; Charles C., in the real-estate business in Bakersfield; J. W., with his
brother in mercantile business, and Cora, the wife of J. W. Smith, Bakersfield.


The subject of our sketch spent his boyhood and early youth in his native town, and improved the educational opportunities then afforded. At the age of thirteen he apprenticed himself to learn the trade of watchmaker and jeweler. In the spring of 1865, when the last call for troops was made, he enlisted. Being under age, however, he was never mustered into service. In 1866 he went to Attica, Indiana, where he continued work at his trade and remained for several years. Too close application to his business there seriously impaired his eyesight and somewhat his health.


March 1, 1874, he was married, at Terre Haute, Indiana, to Miss Fannie Davis, and on the third of that month they started for California. Bakersfield was then in its infancy, and here they took up their abode. In connection with J. P. Low, Mr. Scribner established a jewelry business and also carried a stock of stationery, confectionery, etc., under the firm name of Low & Scribner. Since that time Mr. Scribner has been engaged in business here, meeting with almost unexampled success. With the marvelous growth of Kern County and Bakersfield the good name and influence of the house of W. H. Scribner has spread, and his fortune has correspondingly increased. From year to year, as he has been financially prosperous, his capital has been promptly invested in local improvements, both public and private. He was one of the directors of the Kern Valley Bank; was a promoter and organizer of the excellent water system of Bakersfield, of which he has acquired a one-half ownership; was an organizer and is now a member of the Southern Hotel Association, which built and furnished the original Southern Hotel, and rebuilt the same after its destruction by fire, July, 1889, at an expense of upwards of $116,000. In that fire Mr. Scribner also sustained other losses; but, with unbounded faith in his chosen city, he at once began the work of rebuilding. A solid brick business block now occupies the site of his less pretentious one. It fronts on Chester avenue, and the second story composes a portion of the Arlington Hotel. Another brick block owned by him is one adjoining the Southern Hotel. He also owns a large amount of other valuable property in Bakersfield, which nets him a handsome profit. In politics he is a Republican; is Chairman of the Republican County Committee and a member of the Republican State Central Committee has, however, always refused to run for office, although repeatedly solicited to do so. He is, indeed, a man of remarkable versatility. While it might seem that his time is wholly taken up with his extensive business operations, yet he finds time for other pleasures and pursuits. He is fond of reading and spends many hours in his library and with his family. Few men are possessed of a greater fund of general information and entertain broader views on the various questions of the day than he.


His marriage at Terre Haute has already been referred to. Mrs. Scribner's death occurred January 15, 1878. On December 26, 1881, he wedded Miss Nellie O'Donnell, the daughter of a California pioneer. By his present wife he has three daughters. The family home, a model of comfort and convenience, is located at the corner of K and Twenty-first streets.

A. G. DEARDORFF.—This gentleman is one of the distinguished physicians of Fresno, and is justly entitled to representation on these pages.


Born in Douglas County, Oregon, September 14, 1854, the Doctor was a pioneer of that section of the West. His father, a native of Iowa, came to California in 1849 during the mining excitement, and finally settled in Oregon. Our subject attended school at Wilbur, Oregon, the institution there being a branch of the well known Willamette University. In 1878 he went East to Keokuk, Iowa, where he entered the College of Physicians and Surgeons, graduating with honor in 1882. He soon settled in Jefferson, Oregon, and there engaged in the practice of medicine from the spring of 1882 until the fall of 1885. Then after a temporary residence in Salem, Oregon, he moved to Fresno, where he has since resided, devoting has entire attention to the practice of his profession. He enjoys a very large family practice in this city, and the confidence and respect of the best people.


The Doctor has invested in some choice vineyard land near the city, and also owns valuable property in Fresno. He is public-spirited and much interested in the development and future prosperity of the country in which he has cast his lot.


Dr. Deardorff was married in 1879 to Elizabeth M. Harmon, a native of Pennsylvania, whom he had the good fortune to meet during his college life.

J V. ROBERTS.—Throughout Kern County the name of J. V. Roberts is a familiar one, he being known as an early pioneer of the Kern river valley. He was one of the first white settlers in Walker's Basin, which spot he first visited in 1854. Previous to that he had spent some time in the San Joaquin valley and one year in Los Angeles County, buying cattle. He purchased about 300 head, drove them to Tehachapi, spent one year there, and then, in 1855, proceeded to Walker's Basin. The country at that time was in its virgin dress of nature and made up one vast stock range. The land was not then surveyed and neither the farmer's plow had disturbed its soil nor the woodman's ax had marred the glories of its forest beauty. Mr. Roberts made a location and raised some hay and grain, but soon afterward sold his improvements to the late William Lightner, and removed still further on to the frontier, to his present. place. That occurred in the fall of 1860, and he at once went to work to develop and beautify his ranch.


Mr. Roberts was born in Hamilton, Butler County, Ohio, December 25, 1825. His parents were New Jersey people of Scotch and Welsh origin. Young Roberts seemed to have been born with the instincts and ambitions of a thorough pioneer. He left his native home at the age of eighteen years and went to Kentucky.

From there he joined the army of the United States, and was in the leading battles of the Mexican war. He spent one year in Texas and from there came to California and to the San Joaquin valley. His experiences in Kern County have been those of a successful business man. He has accumulated a good bank account, broad acres of fine land and about 400 head of cattle, and has a bright and amiable family. He is a man of correct habits and modest demeanor, awl is respected by all who have the pleasure of his acquaintance.


RILEY MONROE WILSON was born in Oneida County, New York, June 13, 1832, son of Lathrop M. and Prudence (Hungerford) Wilson, both natives of Connecticut. Grandfather Roger Wilson was also a native of that State. Mr. Wilson was the second of the the children born to his parents, and when he was ten years of age the family removed to the town of Wayne, Cass County, Michigan, where he was reared. While in New York he received some schooling, but after they located in the new State of Michigan his educational advantages were meager.


In 1853, upon reaching his majority, like many other men of ambitious natures, he was attacked with the gold fever and directed his course toward the new El Dorado of the West. After his arrival in California, Mr. Wilson was engaged in mining in several localities, and at first only made his expenses. In Sierra County, however, he was more successful, but sold out his interests there to avoid litigation. Next he worked in the silver mines of Nevada, and also carried on blacksmithing there very successfully. He then returned to California and purchased a section of land in Santa Clara County, improved the property and resided on it fifteen years. In 1881 he removed to Fresno, bought twenty acres of fruit land, built a nice home and planted the property to fruit and vines, which are now in full bearing and bringing in a handsome income. In the meantime he sold his Santa Clara County property, and in 1886 lie purchased the Traver mill, at Traver. Tulare county: This he has improved by putting in a full roller process.


In 1864 he was united in marriage to Miss Hattie B. Barrows, a native of Flint, Michigan. Three daughters have been born to them, namely: Kitty Blanch, wife of Richard Williams; Lenora Lois, wife of Luther S. Hubbard, has one daughter and resides in Fresno; and Alice M. The last named, through a sad accident, met her death at the age of ten years. They were on a vacation in the mountains, and in some unaccountable manner she wandered away and was lost. After ten days of most anxious search, her remains were found in the river where she had been drowned. In politics Mr. Wilson is a Republican, hay- big voted with that party since Mr. Lincoln was first a candidate for the presidency.

LOIJIS WHITENDALE, one of the thrifty ranchers of Tulare County, California, was born in the State of New York, September 13, 1853. He is the son of Frederick and Clara (Faubel) Whitendale, both natives of Germany, and is the second born of their eight children. He was reared on his father's farm, working in summer and attending school in winter. At the age of fifteen years he went to the lumber woods of Pennsylvania, there becoming inured to hard work, and remaining five years. Then he removed to Missouri, and from that place came to Tulare County, California, where lie worked for wages for one of the prominent farmers of the county, the gentleman who subsequently became his father-in-law.


In 1884 Mr. Whitendale married Miss Eliza Chatten, daughter of Richard Chatten. He has built a good residence upon his property four miles east of Visalia, and he is comfortably situated, engaged in raising cattle, hogs and horses. He owns another ranch of 320 acres, eleven miles south of Visalia. He and his wife are the parents of two beautiful children, William and Ida. Mr. Whitendale is a member of the I. 0. 0. F. Politically he is a Democrat.

DAVE HIRSEIFELD, one of the leading merchants of Kern County, is a native of Germany. He came to California as a boy in 1871 and landed in Santa Ana, Where he received his first business experience. In the following year he went to Lower California, during the placer-mining boom, and remained there for a little over two years, when he returned to American soil, and shortly afterward to Bakersfield, where he has remained ever since. He became a member of the firm of Hirshfeld Bros. & Co., which firm established for themselves a reputation for fair dealing and trustworthiness in every hamlet in the county. Mr. Dave Hirshfeld dissolved his business connections with his former associates and established for himself the Pioneer Store, on the first of September, 1890. This store is one of the most complete establishments in Central California. It occupies a spacious, new and solid brick building, constructed especially for the present occupant. The stock contained in this building is the largest in Kern County. The proprietor has local buyers in San Francisco and in the East, who supply him daily with new and fashionable goods, which enables him to give his customers the best for the least money. The store is lighted with six electric arc lights, which gives it the brilliancy of day at night. Four lines of the rapid cash transmitter forward the cash receipts to the cashiers' desks. Improved elevators are used for the handling of heavy goods. The Pioneer Store has the best ventilated basement in the city. It is 58 x 100 feet, and is filled with heavy goods.


Dave Hirshfeld occupies an enviable position as a business man in Kern valley, and his success is due mainly to that sterling trait of character,—that he never misrepresents anything in business, and that he never resorts to the " Cheap John" way of doing business in holding out five cent inducements in order to gain $5 advantage over the unwary. Mr. Hirshfeld takes a lively interest in home affairs which tend to forward the material interests and development of his town and vicinity, and as a citizen and social companion, is highly esteemed.

THOMAS JEFFERSON JANES, as a pioneer of 1849, and as a man prominently connected with the stock interests of California, merits more than a passing notice on the pages of this volume.


Mr. Janes was born in Pike County, Missouri, November 18, 1826, son of William and Mary Ann (Lear) Janes, natives of Kentucky. They emigrated to Missouri in 1812 and took up their abode on the frontier. In 1830 they moved to Benton County, purchased land three miles from Warsaw, the county seat, where they lived until the death of Mr. Janes, February 17, 1844, at the age of fifty-five years.


The subject of our sketch remained at home on the farm until he reached his majority, receiving what education he could from the meager facilities then afforded. On the breaking out of the gold fever, his ambitious nature was enthused, and May 4, 1849, he left Warsaw for the El Dorado of the West. Equipped with ox teams, his party made the journey via the northern route, passing Goose lake in. Oregon and coming into California by the old emigrant trail. They arrived at Lassen's ranch on the 23d of September, and at Sacramento on the 6th of October. Mr. Janes went to the mines on Weaver creek, where he wintered and did some mining. From exposure incurred, he was taken sick and in the spring of 1850 went to San Francisco for the benefit of his health. May of that year found him in the Santa Clara valley, engaged in teaming and farming. He was one of the first to engage in farming in that valley, and he remained there until 1858, when he returned to Missouri, embarking at San Francisco and making the voyage via Panama, New Orleans and. St. Louis, thence to Warsaw, his former home. There he intended to remain, but he soon became disgusted with the country and climate, and in May, 1859, again started across the plains for California. The company in which he traveled was composed of about forty men, women and children, among them being three brothers and four sisters of Mr. Janes, also two men who crossed the plains with him in 1849. On this trip Mr. Janes brought with him 100 head of cattle. Crossing by the Humboldt river, they passed the big trees of Calaveras County and came by Stockton to San Jose, arriving October 1. In the spring of 1860 he brought his cattle to Tulare County and settled on Tnle river, three miles west of his present ranch, where he remained until the high waters of 1862 changed the river bed. In the spring of 1863 he moved to his present location.


Mr. Janes was married in Santa Clara County, California, September 5, 1861, to Miss Mary Jane Truett, a native of Tennessee. In 1867 he homesteaded eighty acres and in 1872 preempted 160 acres, which formed the nucleus of his present landed interests. He continued in the stock business until 1873, when free grazing was cut off by the passage of the " Defence" law. Then he sold his cattle, numbering 1,000 head, and engaged in the sheep business with a band numbering 2,200. This number he subsequently increased to 4,400, and followed the business about ten years, when he sold out. He increased his land-holdings to 1,300 acres, but as his three sons reached their majority he settled land on them, and his own ranch now numbers only about 800 acres. Since 1865 Mr. Janes has done more or less farming, usually sowing 300 acres in grain, and in a modified way is still engaged in the stock business, keeping horses, mules, cattle and a few sheep.

Mr. and Mrs. Janes have five children living: William Isham, Madison Monroe, Thomas Walter, Estella and Blanche K. His present large and handsome residence was built in 1882, and is surrounded by a family orchard and vines that were planted in 1876. In the spring of 1891 Mr. Janes planted a raisin vineyard of twelve acres. He is a man who has given close attention to his own personal affairs, has been cautious in his judgment and careful in his investments, and as a result his efforts have been rewarded with success, and he has the respect and esteem of his fellow citizens.

ROBERT CURTIS GARDNER is one of the youngest, as well as one of the ablest, members of the dental fraternity of Fresno. He is a native of Uniontown, Fayette County, Pennsylvania, born May 11, 1867, his parents being Jesse Beeson and Margaret (Kerr) Gardner. His father was a well-known- public man in that State, and for eight years held the office of Prothonotary. He also has an enviable military record in the active service of his country, having served as a Major in the war with Mexico, as well as acting in the same capacity in the war of the Rebellion. He is now a resident of Uniontown, Pennsylvania. The mother of our subject is, however, deceased, her death having occurred about 1873. After her death, R. C. Gardner, whose name heads this article, went to live with an aunt in Clinton, Illinois, but returned to Pennsylvania three years later.


His early education was received in the schools of Illinois and Pennsylvania. At the age of fifteen years he again went West, and this time made his home at Petersburg, Illinois, with an uncle named James Moore, who wa0 the pioneer miller of that place. Eight months later he went to Jacksonville, Illinois, and there attended the Washington high school, where he was graduated in 1884. After that event he made his home again at Petersburg, and there began the study of his present profession with a prominent dentist of that place. A year later he went to the western metropolis, and began attendance at the Chicago College of Dental Surgery, where he was graduated in the spring of 1888. Having completed his studies and prepared himself for a professional career, Dr. Gardner came to California and located at Fresno, at once beginning the practice in which he is now so successfully engaged.


In August, 1889, lie formed a business partnership with Dr. W. J. Prather, with whom he is now associated. Jointly these gentlemen enjoy a very extensive patronage, being highly esteemed both by their professional brethren and the public at large.
In August, 1890, Dr. Gardner was united in marriage with Miss Mary R. Tennant, a native of San Jose, California, and they reside in their attractive home, recently *erected in Fresno.

Memorial and Biographical History of the Counties of Fresno, Tulare and Kern, California

Illustrated - The Lewis Publishing Company -1892

Transcribed by: Martha A Crosley Graham - Pages 340-365


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Martha A Crosley Graham

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