History of Northern California

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JOHN ALLMAN, the pioneer stage owner of the Pacific coast, has been a resident of California since 1850. He was born on shipboard in the harbor of Queenstown, and his parents, who were about sailing for America, were Thomas and Elizabeth (Doughty) Allman, natives of Bandon, Ireland. Arriving in Boston, his father immediately took out his papers as a citizen of the United States, and was soon after appointed, through American friends he had made while a young man attending the Corn Exchange in London, to a position in the appraiser’s department of the custom house in Boston. The son was educated in the public schools of their adopted city, and at the age of fourteen years he accompanied his father on a trip to New Orleans, where he was engaged in buying sugar and molasses for the Boston market. He there decided to strike out for himself, and shipped on a boat running up the Arkansas River, and later for a trip to Cincinnati and return.

On the discovery of gold in California in 1849, he determined to come to this State, and shipped as a boy on the Caroline C. Dow for home. After visiting his family, he and an older brother were to come to California, but the brother weakened at the last moment, and John got the benefit of his ticket, arriving in San Francisco, via Panama, on the first trip made by the steamship Tennessee, in 1850. He went immediately to the mines, and panned dirt in almost every digging in the Sierras, seeking for the place where gold could be shoveled up clear. During some three years of varied experience at Horse -Shoe Bar, Grass Valley, Murderer’s Bar, Rough and Ready, and Nevada City, he accumulated about $4,500 and the rheumatism, and succeeded in getting rid of both at about the same time! His money being exhausted he made another attempt in the mines, building a wing dam on the American River. This brought on a relapse, which satisfied him with mining, and he decided to remain in San Francisco. In those early days that city was tilled with men for whom employment was scarce, and having given up the search for gold as arduous and uncertain in its results, they were returning to their homes in the East.

For several years Mr. Allman engaged in any employment that required well developed muscle, a clear understanding and a cheerful, buoyant spirit, and these qualities especially fitted him for the position, which he afterward took as passenger agent for one of the steamship lines then competing for the travel back to the States.  His unassuming but strict attention to business soon attracted the attention of Commodore Garrison, who gave him a position of trust as well as profit in connection with his lines. This connection continued until 1857, when the commodore returned to New York, where he established what became the largest steamship business in the world up to that time. Mr.  Allman returned home in 1855 and was married by the Rev. Bishop Eastburn, to Miss Mary Jean Dodson, a daughter of John W. and Henrietta Dodson, natives of the north of Ire- land, but who had long resided in Boston. She was a Sunday-school companion and a friend of his early youth, whose memory and the hope of making her his wife had been the guiding star of his existence and the inspiration of his labors and efforts in California.

He brought his wife to California and opened a hotel, which he conducted for some time. In 1859 he went to Healdsburg and engaged in the livery business. Horace F. Page, likewise engaged, began to run in opposition by letting rigs at starvation prices; but the very next year Mr. Allman sold him out by sheriff’s sale, and Page then left the place; and was after, ward Congressman from El Dorado County.  Mr. Allman established stage routes on the Russian River, and also from Healdsburg to Shasta City. .Two years later he extended his lines to Sacramento, covering about 160 miles, being then only twenty-seven years of age. At the same time he was carrying on livery stables at the White Sulphur Springs, at Healdsburg, and in order to maintain supervision over all he drove one side of the road himself, three times a week, thus keeping an eye on each stable every day. In addition he was agent for the Sacramento stages, and did all the business for the others himself.  During this time he had opposition on nearly all his lines, but finally by superior management he succeeded overcoming the opposition and forcing the Sacramento lines to be sold out by the sheriff. During this light the fare was at one time as low as one dollar from Napa to Sacramento, out of which he paid two tolls on the road. The very first year (1859) he sold out his opponent, Jonas McKensey, by sheriffs sale; and on the very day of the battle of Bull Run, at one o’clock in the afternoon, the latter stole up behind Mr. Allman and shot him twice, and both bullets Mr. Allman carries in his body to-day! Up to that time of iiis life he had never carried a weapon. Two years after the above event the men met again on a steamboat at Benicia bound for San Francisco, and on ar- rival at the wharf in that city McKensey commenced firing at Mr. Allman, one shot passing through the hand of officer Spooner, who was standing near. McKensey was struck twice.  Mr. Allman was tried in Judge Campbell’s po- lice court and at once acquitted.

In 1860 he went to Virginia City, and located ground on C Street, where the Metropolitan livery stable was afterward built, and adjoining Wells, Fargo & Co.’s express office of a later date, on which he built an ordinary stage barn, and paid $900 for three tons of common grass hay. He formed a partnership with Major Ormsby, who had been previously engaged in the stage business, to stock the road from Virginia City to Placerville. He had at that time one eleven-passenger stage coach, which he had taken apart and packed on mules a distance of seventy-five miles over the Sierra Nevada Mountains through the snow. He re- turned to California to purchase 150 head of horses and more coaches, and had bought a small part of his outfit when the news came by pony express that Major Ormsby had been killed in the Piute Indian war of Nevada.

Not having sufficient money to carry on this enterprise alone, Mr. Allman was obliged to dispose of this property to the best advantage.  On the breaking up of the California Stage Company’s business in 1866, he purchased six- teen eleven-passenger coaches, which, with swing-poles and harnesses for as many six-horse teams, he shipped to Sacramento, where he had the coaches painted, and advertised that he would buy 200 head of horses, which he did in two days. He had learned from parities coming from Montana that on account of the Missouri River being frozen, staple goods could be introduced into the territory only from California.  But Montana was tilled with robbers and high-waymen, making it dangerous to transport either goods or treasure, the Portmouth Canon robbery having occurred about this time, in which six men had been killed and $200,000 captured. These parties were outfitting with cattle from Los Angeles, to carry their goods to Helena, Montana, and Mr. Allnan bought the same class of goods and took the chance of beat- ing them into Montana by means of his fine horses, notwithstanding that they had ten days the start. His stock consisted of about 175 cases of Hayward long-legged gum boots, two tons heavy California clothing, 2,500 pounds long-handled shovels, one ton prospect pans, 1,000 pounds pick handles, and three tons of black gunpowder tea. He paid six dollars, six and one-fourth cents per pair for the boots, and sold them at an average of $24.50 per pair, and everything else in about the same proportion, having beaten the ox teams by over two weeks, and finding the territory empty of goods.

Before leaving for Montana he advertised to take passengers with 50 pounds of luggage for $150 each, including board, and shrewdly secured enough, with the drivers, to guard the train. Judge Burson, afterward nominated for Chief Justice of Montana, was one of his passengers, with 500 pounds of law books, and paid $600 for his passage, with the privilege of riding with Mr. Allman in his division buggy. He made Salt Lake from Sacramento in twenty-nine traveling days, scouring Utah in advance of the train from one end to the other, buying hay and grain, and making arrangements for the camp at night; and he never found one person in the Territory who could figure up in the morning what was due him for hay. They recruited but two days at Salt Lake, after traveling 700 miles, ail the men and horses being in good health and condition.

Starting on the next stage of the journey, 720 miles, to Helena, all went well until they crossed the Bear River, and reached the east Mormon settlement. He there bought a stack of about eight tons of hay for $40. This Mormon demanded his pony at night, contrary to the usual custom. During the night the horses became perfectly wild, and in the morning when hitched up they would not pull a pound ; and there was not a Mormon to be found in the settlement. The hay was “crazy grass.” Ten of the horses could not be moved, and were traded off for hay. The others recovered slowly, and the whole train was delayed for four days.  Meanwhile they reached the crossing of the last range of the Rocky Mountains, with about nine miles of soft snow ahead before entering the Territory of Montana. They cooked Chili beans and pork enough for all hands, packing them in gunny-sacks, and allowing five days for the trip across the snow. It took them nine days, on some of which they did not make a quarter of a mile, the snow being so deep and the men and horses nearly exhausted. Two of the men and several horses succumbed to the hardships of the passage. Every passenger, even Chief Justice Burson, was pressed into the service of driving these six-horse teams, and Mr. Allman paid a man living in the neighborhood, who had a sled and a yoke of steers, $150 to help him through the last quarter of a mile. Had he not been a man of herculean strength and iron nerve he could never have accomplished it.  When every other man lay down at night exhausted he would carry goods in his arms ahead of the wagon and pile them up for the coaches when they reached them the next day. They had to feed the horses on flour and snow water, while the men lived on beans, which were frozen solid in the sacks, and had to be cut off in chunks with axes.

At one time he found there was a conspiracy among some of the passengers to take the horses and push through, leaving the coaches and goods in the snow. This was nipped in the bud by knocking the ringleader on the head with his revolver and disarming him; this prompt action bringing enough of the other passengers to his support to overawe the conspirators and crush out the attempt.

He sold out his whole outfit at Helena, with a clear profit of about $48,000 on the venture, but with no means of getting hither himself or such a quantity of gold dust out of the Ter- ritory. After the Missouri River opened he was able to reach St. Joseph, Missouri, by boat, and carried his dust and securities with him. The Vigilance Committee at Helena had vouched to him for two others who had a large amount of gold, and to the others for him. Each of these gentlemen took his regular watch over the dust. At St. Joe they took the train, and on the afternoon of July 4, 1866, they arrived at the. Continental Hotel in Philadelphia, where a large and intensely excited crowd blocked up the street to watch these gentlemen carry their sacks of gold-dust into tlie hotel. Mr. Allman then went to Washington, and secured from Postmaster General Randall a contract for carrying the mails from Hellgate, otherwise known as Missoula Mills, Montana, to Wallnla, Washington Territory, the head of navigation on the Columbia River. This route covered a distance of 600 miles, passing through Flathead Agency on Kansas Prairie, Vermilion Creek, to Pendoreille Lake, where they ferried the mails across the lake from Pendoreille City to Cabinet Landing, crossing Snake River three times, and so through Walla Walla to Wallula.

For a number of years after this Mr. AUman was a very prominent mail contractor, opening up new routes to many parts of the great country which had never before had the benefit of postal or any other reliable means of communication with the outside world. He has invariably secured his mail contracts by personal efforts at headquarters in Washington, returning to the coast to see that they were properly executed. For the past thirty years he has owned and operated stage routes more or less continuously, and meeting the most celebrated men of the period from all parts of the world, who have at one time or other traveled on the Pacific coast. Besides this he has al- ways been a large operator in mines and real estate.

In 1880 he obtained the Government mail contracts from Dayton, Nevada, by way of Neason Valley to Belleville, ninety miles, and from Virginia City, same State, to Bodie, California, 125 miles, and also from Aurora to Independence, California, 150 miles, and stocked all of them.  The National Stage Company were running from Carson City, Nevada, to Bodie, and also to Belleville, and the two lines were therefore in competition. They commenced cutting fare.  Mr. Allman, however, made but one cut, and that was from $17 to $7, when hay was worth $60 a ton and barley four cents a pound. The opposition company soon came to Mr. Allman and purchased 400 miles of his service, coaches, horses and harness.

In 1884 J. L. Sanderson & Co. extended their service over Mr. Allman’s roads on the north coast by misrepresentation at Washington.  Mr. Allman warned them, but in vain. Nevertheless, lie stocked every road they had where there was good travel, and in less than two years he had them sold out. They were attached by their creditors and left the State, $30,000 in debt, to their drivers, hostlers, etc.

There are three children in his family: John Henry, a graduate of the Golden Gate Academy, Oakland, and now superintendent of a large milling plant in Washington; Emma Jean, a graduate of Mills Seminary, and now the wife of Major Tompkins, of Oakland; and George Dodson, also a graduate of the Golden Gate Academy, and a merchant of Washington. [Pages 540-542]

JOHN ALLYN, capitalist, in St. Helena, a truly representative and most highly respected citizen, has resided in this place for over twenty years, always taking a forward part in matters of public benefit, and standing prominently before his fellow townsmen. He is an unusually good instance of the self-made man, — one who by diligence, economy and rectitude has made his way upward from narrow circum- stances to affluence, who has won a superior education by his own efforts and by the native force of his mind has taken a leading part in every position in which he has been placed. As a writer of polished and forceful English, in the domain both of poetry and prose, he has been much noticed and admired.

Dr. Allyn was born in 1820, in Litchlield County, Connecticut, w here his father was a respected but not wealthy farmer. In his sixteenth year the family removed to Ohio, where Mr. Allyn took the full advantage of his educational opportunities. After reaching the age of twenty he obtained a school, which he taught during the winter, working during the summers and all the time carrying on his studies at Oberlin College. He went thence to Illinois, and thence to Cincinnati, and graduated at Lane Theological Seminary. At that time Dr. Lyman Beecher was at the bead of that institution, and Dr. Stowe was one of the professors. His health failing, young Allyn was forced to abandon his intentions of entering the ministry of the Presbyterian Church, and he began to practice law at Carrollton, Greene County. Illinois.  He was admitted to practice before the Supreme Court of Illinois, May 5, 1846, his name being enrolled April 8, 1850. His health failing again, however, he decided to try a change of climate, and accordingly came to California in the summer of 1851, reaching San Francisco, September 1st of that year, after the great fire that devastated that city. He did not stop there but went on at once to Tuolnmne County.  Whilst in Stockton on his way, his money gave out, and he had to walk ail the way to Sonora meeting while on the way three men with blankets on their backs who informed him that the dirt at Sonora had been worked over three, times already. He pushed on, however, and found that after the rains came many did well.  Not being strong enough to mine, Mr. Allyn went into the manufacture of rocker;:, “ long- toms,” etc., and afterward engaged in store- keeping, at the same time paying some little attention to real estate. In 1858 he went to  the Fraser River, following the excitement of that year. The rush was tremendous, a large proportion of those going losing money. There were no less than 10,000 people in Victoria in one day during that season. Mr. Allyn went up to Fort Yale and from there to Fort Hope, on the Fraser, and in the latter place stayed for the winter, going into business at that point.  He then returned to Victoria, going into business first for a year, and afterward for the remaining two years of his residence in that city, buying and selling real estate. During the year 1861 he lived at Port Townsend and followed the profession of dentistry, f<^r which he had fitted himself.

In 1864 he went to Oakland and located in that city, it having then a population of only 2,000 people. In the summer of 1870, as already stated, he came to St. Helena, bought a tract of twenty acres in the town, built his comfortable residence and set out twenty acres of grapes. When the vines were six years old the vineyard yielded ninety-six tons of grapes, or eight tons per acre. The following year the return was $200 per acre in grapes. These facts show the value of vineyard land in the vicinity of St. Helena, and although fluctuations in prices have made a difference, yet there is always a demand for better varieties. To further illustrate the fertility of the soil it may be stated that Dr. Allyn, in the presence of the writer, measured some gum trees which he had planted along Scott Avenue in 1873. They ranged up to six feet and a half in circumference, or over two feet in diameter, with heights of over sixty feet, and tops cut off every three years; this is the growth of sixteen years without irrigation, the trees being simply planted and left to get along as best they might.

In his own person, however, perhaps Dr.  Allyn is the best recommendation of California that can be given, as he is a splendid instance of what our climate is capable of. Although never a man of robust health, yet he has attained the age of seventy years with still a capacity for close and continuous care to his multifarious business interests or to literary effort, and is never deterred by weather or circumstances from going out to everything that may need his attention.

Dr. Allyn has never sought political life, but has always had the confidence of his fellow citizens. He has been School Trustee and a member of the Board of Town Trustees for eight His first marriage was unfortunate and resulted in a divorce. In June, 1851, he married Miss Sophronia Scott, daughter of the late William Scott, of Peterboro, New Hampshire, with whom he still lives. Twins were born to them, but died in infancy. He has one son, living in Ventura.

In religion Dr. Allyn is liberal and a firm believer in a future life from his own investigations of spiritual phenomena. He claims that he has repeatedly received from deceased friends directly into his own hands writings between closed and sealed slates in broad daylight! {Page 361]


FRANK L. COOMBS, attorney at law, and now for the second term representing his district in the State Legislature, is a native Californian, having been born in Napa, December 27, 1853. Attending the public schools until sixteen years of age he was then sent to Boston, Massachusetts, where he attended the High School. He received his legal education at the Columbian School, Washington, District of Columbia, being admitted to practice before the District Supreme Court in 1875.  Returning to California he engaged in the practice of law, and was elected District Attorney of Napa County for two terms. He served five years, holding over for one year on the first term, until the provisions of the new constitution should take effect. His parents were Nathan and Isabella (Gordon) Coombs, his father a native of. Massachusetts and his mother of New Mexico. His father crossed the plains to Oregon in 1842, arriving in this State a year later, and settled in Yolo County, where he engaged in cattle-raising. He was one of the original “Bear Flag” party, which in Sonoma in 1846 first raised the flag of Californian independence of Mexico. In 1845 he acquired a Spanish grant, which included the present site of the city of Napa, and much of this land is still in possession of his children.  He represented the county for two terms in the State Legislature..

Mr. Frank Coombs was married in 1879, to Miss Belle M. Roper, a native of Boston, whom lie had met while attending school there. Her parents were Foster and Sophia Roper, now residents of .Napa. They have three children, Nathan, Amy and Frank. Mr. Coombs and family are attendants of the Presbyterian Church. He has always been an ardent supporter of the Republican Party and its ideas.  He is largely interested in stock-raising, agriculture and horticulture. He has one ranch of 350 acres and another of 1,200 acres in the vicinity of Napa. On one of these he has an orchard of twenty acres of peaches, the fruit of which is mostly sold in San Francisco. The balance of these ranches is devoted to the raising of line stock, and the necessary hay and pasturage for them. His cattle are mostly dairy cows of fair grade, but his horses are of line trotting strains, of the Dexter, Wilkes, Mambrino, Patchen, Almont and other leading families. One of these, Lillie Stanley, has made 2:17-| on the Patchen course. Those still too young for the track are giving promise of great speed. But his enthusiastic interest in his work as a legislator has given Mr. Coombs his greatest prominence in public affairs. During the two sessions in which he has been a representative, he has never missed a morning roll-call, and in the last he was the Republican nominee for Speaker of the Assembly. Among other important measures with which he has been identified was the passage of the ‘• pure wine law,” which he framed, and which promises to be of great benefit to that interest in the State. He conceived the idea that as the citrus fruits matured too late to take advantage of the county fairs, there should be held in the winter season a series of citrus fairs, and to that end introduced an item into the general bill appropriating $10,000 to aid that movement, and in order to prevent any conflict arising from local jealousy provided that one-half should be ex- pended in Southern and one-half in Northern California. He assisted materially in the passage of the Wright Irrigation Bill, to which although representing a district that does not require irrigation, he extended his friendly aid.

He was largely instrumental in passing the Mutual Insurance Bill, designed for the protection of the public against the exorbitant rates of the Insurance Compact. This important bill, which would have given great relief to the people of the State, was unfortunately vetoed by the Governor During the excitement in reference to hydraulic mining, when the differences between the valley agricultural interests and those of the miners seemed almost impossible to be reconciled, and about the time that the Waiworth Impounding Bill was defeated in the Senate, Mr. Coombs introduced a resolution requesting the appointment by Congress of a commission to ascertain whether hydraulic mining could be carried on without violating the Federal laws, and to consider and recommend the best methods for clearing the rivers and harbors of any debris arising there from. This resolution was incorporated in a bill which passed Congress providing for such a commission and appropriating money for its expenses.  But perhaps the most useful and valuable of all the labors of this popular and rising young legislator were his untiring efforts to search out and defeat measures inimical to the interests of the people, and his devotion to this ordinarily thankless, but most necessary and important, part of his duties at the State capital will not soon be forgotten. [Page 741]


HARRY W. DURFOR is proprietor of the daily stage route from Redding to Baird, where the United States Fishery is located. He is also the mail and express carrier on this line, and carries the news and correspondence of the county to three postofhces, Stillwater, Buckeye and Baird.

Mr. Durfor was born in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, November 22, 1854, the son of Edwin T. and Elizabeth (Heidieffener) Durfor.  His father was also a native of Philadelphia, and followed the butchering business in that city for a number of years. In 1859 they crossed the plains to California with ox teams.  They first settled in Butte County, at Inskip, and engaged in mining, which occupation the father has followed the most of the time since coming to California. Mr. and Mrs. Durfor reared a family of five children, the subject of tins sketch being the eldest. He, too, has mined a great deal in this State, and has also been interested in farming. He owns eighty acres at Stillwater, on which he has built and which he has improved by planting a variety of fruit trees. After purchasing the stage route he removed from his farm to Redding. His sister, an amiable young lady, keeps house for him and attends the Redding High School.  His younger brother is in his employ. They drive alternate days, and use two good pairs of horses. The route a portion of the way is through a pleasant farming country, then over a rocky and mountainous road.

Politically Mr. Durfor is a Republican. He is also a temperance man. [Page 742]


GEORGE W. GORDON, a prominent horticulturist near Haywards, was born in Orange County, New York, September 20, 1843, and was reared and educated in Middletown, in his native county, until 1861, when he enlisted as a private soldier in the First New York Mounted Rifles, and served as such until 1864, when he was mustered out of service at City Point, near Richmond, Virginia, and returned to his native State, where he engaged in the dry-goods trade until 1866. He then went to Cleveland, Ohio, where he continued in the mercantile trade until 1870. Going then to Chicago he was manager of a mercantile house there for eighteen years. His ambition led him to exert his utmost energies to attain the front rank of the mercantile circle; but this impaired his health, so that by the year 1888 he concluded to come to California; and hither he came, locating at Hajwards and purchasing sixteen acres of good land, where he devotes his entire attention to horticultural pursuits. He raises a large and choice variety of all the citrus fruits. He is a member of the Fruit-Growers’ Association of Haywards. Politically he is a Republican, and in May, 1890, he was elected a member of the Board of Town Trustees. He is also a prominent member of the G. A. R., and affiliates with the F. & A. M. of Chicago. He is the youngest of five sons in his father’s family, and lhs three sisters. He was married in Chicago, May 7, 1874, to Miss Julia Hub- bard, a native of that city. Her father was one of the first builders and promoters of  public enterprise in that city. [Page 743]


WILLIAM KING, a retired farmer of Yolo County, was born January 1, 1838, in Knox County, Tennessee, a son of Alfred A. and Sarah (Sharp) King, father a native of North Carolina and mother of Tennessee. The father, a farmer by vocation, moved from North Carolina to Tennessee with his parents, where he remained until 1840; and then resided in Jackson County until 1849, when he came to California across the plains, settling first in Sonoma County, where he remained until his death, in March, 1853, when he was about forty-four years of age. William was brought up on a Tennessee farm and in Missouri three years, and came to California in 1852, across the continent, being from May 5 till September 28 on the road, and ever since then has made his home in Yolo County, chiefly as a farmer. The first two years he worked for wages, and after that he had a farm of his own, which he sold out in 1876, and since then he has lived a somewhat retired life. He has been Justice of the Peace since 1879. It can be said that Mr. King has done his share of work and borne his share of burdens, as he commenced to work on his own responsibility at the age of seventeen years, in California. He was only sixteen years of age when lie made trips to the mines with ox teams, taking provisions there and returning with lumber. Where they settled in Yolo County there were but three others living in his township. He was married March 30, 1864, to Miss R. M. Montgomery, a native of Missouri, and they have two sons and six daughters. [Page 743]


HAMDEN W. MclNTYRE. The gentleman who is most concerned in this biographical sketch is a man whose modesty is scarcely less marked than his ability.  He is in the prime of life, uncommonly tall and in bearing a courteous gentleman. He passed his boyhood on a Vermont farm, and dates his birth at Randolph, September 28, 1834. His father, James Mclntyre, was a native of Vermont, as was also his mother.  His paternal ancestors were of Scotch extraction; and his mother, nee Charlotte Blodget, traces her ancestry to Connecticut.

He was educated in his native State, at an Orange County grammar school, working and teaching school between times to pay his tuition.  At the acre of twenty years he learned the trade of piano and organ maker. In 1857, he went to Canada, where he became the superintendent of a lumber firm, near Ottawa, and remained there years in their employ. In 1860 he returned to Elmira, New York, and engaged in the manufacturing of machinery until 1870.  On the breaking out of the war, he left his business under the management of his foreman and went to Washington, District of Columbia, where he was appointed as an engineer in the navy yard, remaining there employed in the production of gunboat machinery until 1865, when he enlisted in the First New York Veteran Cavalry, and was discharged the same year near Charleston, South Carolina; then he returned to Elmira and conducted  his manufacturing business.

Mr. Mclntyre’s favorite studies have been chemistry and mathematics, the former being first in his regard. His bent of mind in this direction led him doubtless to the study of fermentation and practical wine-making at the cellars of the Pleasant Valley Wine Company in New York, simply as a pastime during a period of idleness enforced by ill-health further and broader reading and study of this and kindred subjects followed, during the long winter nights of a ten-years residence in Alaska, where he was agent at St. Paul’s Island for the Alaska Commercial Company.

In 1881 he commenced wine-making in California at Captain Niebaum’s Ingleuook Winery in Napa County, remaining there until 1887, when he came to Vina and took entire charge of the vineyard and winery of Leland Stanford.  He is a master of civil and mechanical engineering. The winery buildings at Vina, with the exception of the old fermenting house, were constructed from his designs and under his personal supervision, and many of the leading wineries of the State have also been constructed from his designs in whole or in part, or from his plans and drawings in full. Among them may be mentioned the Inglenook Winery at Rutherford, Bourne & Wise’s at St. Helena, M.  M. Estee’s at Napa, Mrs. Collins’ at Mountain View, John Burson’s at Oakville, Goodman & Co’s. at Oak Knoll, near Napa City, C.

P. Adamson’s and Ewer & Atkinson’s at Rutherford, Leland Stanford’s at Menlo Park and the late John A. Paxton’s at Santa Rosa.

Mr. Mclntyre was joined in marriage at Elmira, New York, in November 1859, with Miss Susan H. Johnson, a native of Maine.  They have had two children, both now deceased.  Politically he is a Republican, and takes an active part in politics, being at present a member of the County Central Committee. He also affiliates with the F & A. M., Union Lodge, No.  95, Chapter No. 42, R. A. M., Soutlieriiteen Council, No. 16, R. & S. M., St. Omar Commandery, K. T., No. 19, of Elmira, and Corning Consistory, of Corning, New York. He has taken all the degrees in the York and Scottish Rite up to the Thirty- third, and has served in the chairs of all degrees, except the Consistory.  [Pages 744 - 745]


MARTIN CORRIGAN came to California in 1852, and for two years was a miner on Trinity River. In 1854 he came to Tehama County, and has grown up with the city of Red Bluff. It was an embryo town when he began his business career in it, and he has seen its wonderful growth and development, and has not been an idle looker-on, but an active worker and a builder of the place.

Mr. Corrigan was born in County Kilkenny, Ireland, November 11, 1826. His parents, Thomas and Ann (Condor) Corrigan, were natives of the same county. His father was a black-smith, and also carried on farming in a limited way. Both Mr. and Mrs. Corrigan were devout Catholics. They were the parents of ten children, of whom the subject of this sketch was the sixth. He received a limited education, and learned the blacksmith trade in his father’s shop. In 1846, at the age of twenty years, he left home and friends, and sailed for America to make his fortune in the “land of the free and the home of the brave. “ He settled in Chicago when that city was in its infancy. It was a muddy little town, with a pole stuck up in the middle of the street, with a sign on it which read “No Bottom.” After working at his trade there for six years, he crossed the plains, in 1852, and spent two years at mining, meeting with indifferent success. He then opened his blacksmith shop in Red Bluff, at the corner of Main and Pine streets, where his fine block now stands. He carried on the blacksmith business for sixteen years, until 1870, when his shop burned. The ground on which it stood had become too valuable to be used for that purpose, 80 ha erected some store rooms on it, and rented them. In 1882 they also were destroyed by fire. He then put up his present handsome block of buildings. He has four store rooms in a row, occupied by first-class business firms. He is now erecting another building on Main Street, 40x70 feet and two stories high. The lower story is to be occupied by a merchant tailor and a restaurant, and the upper rooms are for a lodging house. Mr. Corrigan owns a ranch of 1,315 acres, which also he rents.  It is used principally as a stock farm. He owns a beautiful residence on High Street, only a short distance from the business center of the city.

Mr. Corrigan was married, in 1870, to Miss Catherine Sweeney, a native of Fall River, Massachusetts. Their union has been blessed with five beautiful daughters, all born in Red Bluff. All are at this writing residing with their parents. Mrs. Corrigan and her daughters are members of the Catholic Church.

At the time of the great fire in Chicago, Mr.  Corrigan returned to that stricken city to’ visit and, if possible, aid his friends. He has since made two trips to Chicago, and on one of these visits his wife accompanied him. Mr. Corrigan is a good citizen, who attends strictly to his own business, and thinks for himself. He is generous and liberal in all his views. Politically he is a Democrat. He believes that one man is just as good as any other man as long as he is as well behaved. He is quiet and unassuming in his manner, and never seeks notoriety in any way. [Page 745]


JAMES D. AUSTIN, one of the old and highly respected citizens of Haywards, was born in Anderson County, South Carolina, May 11, 1831. His parents, James and Margaret (McCurdy) Austin, were both natives of the same State and died when he was a boy, in 1839. He was then taken in charge by relatives near Marietta, Georgia. In 1852 he went to Franklin County, and the next year to Texas, where, however, he stopped but a few months.  He came on to California by way of El Paso, Tucson, Fort Yuma, San Diego, and thence by water to San Francisco. He followed mining among the Mariposa mines and in that vicinity until 1859, when he settled in Haywards. For the first four years there he had the care of live stock, and afterward he dealt in live stock for several years. Selling out his business in this interest, he went to Denver, Colorado, and kept hotel for four years. In 1875 he returned to Haywards, where he built the American Hotel, and has conducted it in a thorough manner to the present time, gaining for it a good repu- tation. He has been a member of the Board of Town Trustees, and was elected Justice of the Peace in 1880, which office he still holds. He is a Master Mason of Haywards and a member of Oakland Chapter, No. 36, R. A. M.; and he also affiliates with the A. O. U. W. at Haywards.  He was first married in 1870, at Haywards, to Susan Brnmhiller, who died in 1882; and lie was married again, at Oakland, to Mrs. Matilda Baker, and by this marriage there is one child, named Emma J. [Page 745]


GEORGE S. McKENZIE, the popular and energetic Sheriff of Napa County, has been a resident of California and of Napa County since 1879. Born at Kogers’ Hill, Pictou County, Nova Scotia, June 17, 1856, he received his early education in the public schools, but at the acre of twelve years he started out for himself, working a single machine, then at making furniture, and from this advanced to carriage-building, earning enough money in the summer to pay for continuing his schooling in the winter. At the age of seventeen he set up a carriage shop of his own, employing three men, in his native town, where he continued for five years. During a few mouths of that time he worked in Boston, Massachusetts, under instructions, perfecting himself in the arts of car- riage painting and wood-work. In 1875 he sold out his carriage business and came to California, where three of his brothers had already established themselves, and settled in Monticello, Napa County, resuming the carriage-making repairing and blacksmithing business, at which he continued, working at the trade himself until 1880. Meeting with an accident to his right arm, which disabled him from active work at his trade, he bought out a store and engaged in mercantile business in connection with his carriage shop. In 1888 he was persuaded by his friends to become a candidate for the office of Sheriff, and carrying the nomination of the Republican convention against three competitors, he was elected by a good majority, the first Republican sheriff in Napa County for twelve years. In 1889 he removed with his family to Napa, having sold out his carriage shop, though still retaining his mercantile business in Monticello. Besides property to a considerable amount in Monticello, Mr. McKenzie has a ranch of 160 acres in Berrjessa Valley, is a man of broad views, highly respected, and a worthy representative of the young, enthusiastic and progressive element in business, politics and society.  

May 1, 1884, he married Miss Alice M. Clark, daughter of Mr. Abraham Clark, of Berryessa Valley, where she was born, her father having been one of the earliest settlers of that region.  To them have been born three children, two of whom are still living. The eldest child, Harvey, died from congestion of the brain, caused by a fall, at the age of eleven months. Mr. McKenzie’s parents were Murdock and Nancy (Gunn) McKenzie. His mother still occupies the old homestead, but his father died two years ago.  


Always an ardent Republican, he has been for four years a member of the Republican County Committee, and was a delegate to the last State Congressional Convention at San Francisco.  Mr. McKenzie is a thorough American in his views, his early visit to Boston and residence there having placed him in perfect sympathy with the institutions of this country. Immediately on his arrival in California he identified himself with the interests of his adopted country, by taking out his naturalization papers, and be- came a citizen and firm supporter of the Government. In 1888 he made a visit to the home of his parents, spending considerable time in Boston and New York, and finally settling all his business interests outside of California. He attends the Presbyterian Church, is a member of the I. O. O. F.’ Lodge, No. 18, also of Live Oak Encampment, both of Napa City. [Pages 746-747]


VIRGILIUS P. BAKER is a pioneer and a worthy citizen of Red Bluff, and to him is much credit due for the share be has taken in the building up and beautifying of the town. A brief sketch of his life is herewith given.

Mr. Baker was born in New York, December 21, 1825, the son of Solomon and Sarah Baker, both natives of New York, he being the youngest in a family of ten children. His educational advantages were limited, as he was sent to school during the winter months only, and he began to earn his living when he was twelve years old. He learned the carpenter’s trade, and became a contractor and builder. When he was twenty- two years of age Mr. Baker married Miss Jane Lowrey. He had removed to Cass County, Michigan, when he was thirteen, and his marriage occurred there. He continued working at his trade, carrying on contracting and building there until 1853.  In that year he came to the far West and settled in Red Bluff. When he landed in the embryo town, he had his wife and two little children with him to support, and had just one five- dollar gold piece in his pocket. He pitched their tent on the bank of the river, after which he started for the store, which was then kept by a Mr. Bull, intending to purchase tome pro- visions and to make his money go as far as it could in buying flour, pork and other things.  When the storekeeper was told what his customer wanted, he weighed a piece of pork and said: “That comes to $5. If you don’t want that much, you don’t want any.” Mr. Baker returned to his tent with a feeling of discouragement. Soon Captain Reed and his good wife, who were keeping the hotel, stepped down to their tent to see and greet the new-comers.  When that gentleman learned the family were short of provisions, he said, “ You can come to my house and get all the grub you want until you can work and earn money.” It was a generous and kind offer, and it tilled Mr. Baker and his wife with lasting gratitude, and they have always treasured the highest regard for him who 80 nobly befriended them in their time of need.  The next day Mr. Baker obtained employment, and began work at §10 per day; and he has never since that time known what it was to be short of provisions. He soon after got the job of building the frame hotel on the ground where the Fremont now stands. An oak tree stood on Main Street, opposite, and a few rods south of the building. There he moved his tent and his family, and there he lived while he worked at the building.

At this time all the hauling was done by wagon trains; and when the men came down from the North, they stored their money with Mrs. Baker for safe-keeping while they were in the town. She buried it under the tent, and at times had as much as $200,000 buried there.  When the men called for their money it was nothing unusual for them to give the children $10 or even $20; so Mrs. Baker was the pioneer banker of the town. Money was plenty and not valued very highly; it went as freely as it came.  Mr. Baker continued to work at his trade until 1856. By that time he had saved $3,000 in fifty-dollar gold slugs. He made a trip East, going by water, and two months later returned to California. He again took up his business of contracting and building, and worked at it for eighteen years. In 1870 he turned his attention to farming; purchased 400 acres of bottom land, farmed it for live years, and sold it at a handsome profit. He then retired from business. Since that time, however, he has done some contracting. Since his residence at Red Bluff he has erected a greater part of the best buildings in the city. In 1853 he purchased the lots on which his present home is situated.  He first built a house costing $2,200, which still stands. In 1881 he built his present residence — one of the finest in the city — and it is a fitting place for the venerable mechanic to spend the evening of Iris useful life. His family consists of his wife and four children. The two older children were born in Michigan and the others in Red Bluff. Their names are Stephen, Sarah, Edward and William. Edward was the first male white child born in Red Bluff; and when the Baker family came here there were only two white women in the town.  As in most places in California, there was a strike and litigation over the title of their lands, and it cost Mr. Baker $9,000 to defend his title, in which he finally succeeded. The subject of this sketch now lives on the rent of his buildings and the interest of his money. He is a Republican and a good citizen.  No one needs wonder that Red Bluff prospered when he contemplates the class of men who were the founders. [Pages 758-759]



CHARLES R. MAYHEW, a California pioneer, the son of a California pioneer, and one of Red Bluff’s worthy citizens, was born in St. Louis, Missouri, August 31, 1844. His father, William Perry Mayhew, well known in California as Uncle Billy Mayhew, now resides with his son, Charles R., in Red Bluff. He was born in Carthage, Ohio, September 20, 1816, and now, at the age of seventy-four, is hale and hearty, weighs 245 pounds, and is a fine specimen of the worthy pioneers of the Golden State. He married Miss Adaline Hubbel, a native of Ohio, and by her had six children, only two of whom survive.  The Mayhew family, accompanied by Mrs.  Mayhew’s mother and step-father, Mr. Rogers, crossed the plains to California in 1849, being five and a half months en route. While on this journey Charles R., passed his fifth birthday.  The company divided on the plains, one part preceding the others. When the first party came to the point where the Carson and Lassen routes met, they left letters informing those following which way they had taken. The persons with whom the letters were entrusted destroyed them, and sent the rear party on the other route. The Lassen, the route on which they were sent, being the longest, they did not arrive for some considerable time after the first party reached their destination. Being thus delayed they ran out of provisions and much suffering was incurred. Grandfather Rogers traveled twenty miles on foot to get provisions, and left his wife alone while he was gone. They built fires and discharged guns to guide him back to them.

Upon their arrival in California Mr. Mayhew took his cattle across the Sacramento River and camped where the China Slough of Sacramento is now located. When he returned to the camp one day after a short absence Mr. Mayhew found his wife making pies of a sack of dried apples they had brought with them. A number of men were standing near. In answer to her husband’s query as to what «he was doing, she replied that she had started a bakery, and was making pies for the men at one dollar each.  The following winter was a memorable one to many of the California pioneers and especially so to Mr. Mayhew. On the fourth of November the mother died. She was a faithful help- mate and a loving wife and mother, and, what was more, a true and earnest Christian woman.  Her loss was deeply felt by her little family and husband. Mr. Mayhew had rented the brig Traveler, that was lying in the river, and was keeping hotel in it, a part of Sacramento being under water. While there another death occurred in his family: the little baby brother died.

In the spring Mr. Mayhew went to the mines on Feather River and left the subject of this sketch and his two sisters, Sarah and Alice, with Grandfather and Grandmother Rogers, who moved to Santa Clara. Their father was in the mines three years and when he returned to Marysville he had just ten cents left. He bought a six-mule team r>n credit, and engaged in freighting to the mines from Marysville. By the third trip he had made enough to pay for the outfit, and he continued the business that season very successfully. The old California Stage Company established a stage line between Sacramento and Portland, Oregon, and made Mr. Mayhew a proposition to drive for them at a salary of $150 per month. He accepted the proposition and drove a four and sometimes b six horse stage from Hamilton to Teiiania. a distance of about sixty miles.  At this time he became acquainted with a widow, Mrs. Besse, whom he wedded in the fall of 1853. In May, 1854, he went to Santa Clara to get his children, and brought them with him by steamboat up the river to Tehama County. They landed at the mouth of Deer Creek. Peter Lassen’s house was on one side of the river and Mr. Mayhew’s on the other both adobe houses. A large number of Indians had assembled to see the white children, who were very much frightened. Charles tried to be brave, but the girls felt quite certain that they were going to be killed. At that time the Indians had a rancheria on the banks of the river, and more than two hundred of them were there. It was not an uncommon sight to see large numbers of antelope. There were also plenty of grizzly bears in Tehama County at that time. Our subject, although a boy at the time, distinctly remembers when the first telegraph was put up through the county.  Charles R. Mayhew was in attendance at the University of the Pacific in 1863, and it was his intention to finish a course of study there.  His father meeting with reverses, he changed his plans, left school, came to Deer Creek, and, in company with his brothers-in-law, J. T. Gibbs and Daniel Sill, drove a band of cattle to Squaw Valley. From there he made weekly trips to Virginia City, Nevada, driving cattle, continuing that business until he fell from his horse and broke his leg. His brother-in-law came back, took sick and died. They had eighty-six head of cattle apiece, which his brother-in-law took to Honey Lake Valley to winter. The Indians killed so many of them that in the spring each of them had only thirty-six left, which they sold for ten dollars apiece. Mr. Mayhew gave his money to his father, and accepted a clerkship in the Fremont Hotel at Red Bluff.

During this time he also had the stage office for seven months while the agent was absent. On his return the California Stage Company sent Mr. Mayhew to Yreka, to take charge of their office at that place. February 28, 1866, he crossed the Scott and Trinity mountains on a sleigh, it being his first sleigh ride.

On the nineteenth day of the following July Mr. Mayhew was married to Miss Mary A.  Kerns, a native of Ohio, their marriage taking place at Bell’s Bridge, Shasta County. He re- turned with his bride to Yreka and continued there for some time. Their union has been blessed with five children, three daughters and two sons. Frank L., the oldest, was born at Bell’s Bridge, October 15, 1868. The others were born at Red Bluff, viz.: Arthur B., Carrie R., Alice M. and .

In October, 1867, Mr. Mayhew bought the New York House, at the foot of Scott Mountain, in Trinity Valley. The Western Union Telegraph Company gave him an agency and sent him an operator of whom he learned the business in six weeks. The following July he sold out, removed to Chico, started a furniture store and remained there three months. From that place he came to Red Bluff and accepted the position of book keeper for Mr. J. E. Church, a prominent merchant.

In 1872, in partnership with S. D. Clark, a pioneer of the town, he opened a grocery and provision store, beginning business on a small scale. Their friends predicted a short business career for them and gave them as a limit three months. They, however, succeeded beyond their own expectations and soon bought out Mr. Henry F. Dibble, a prominent merchant.  After this hard times came on and nearly every firm in the town failed except theirs. In 1884 Mr. Mayhew bought out his partner, assumed all the indebtedness and took a bill of all the property. He paid his partner, and the creditors accepted Mr. Mayhew for the indebtedness of the firm. In the spring of 1885 he built two brick stores, on the corner of Walnut and Washington streets, seventy-five feet front by eighty feet deep. The room which he occupies is fifty by eighty feet. The other room is rented. The building has a tine basement with concrete floor. Mr. Mayhew has been in business for eighteen years, deals in general merchandise and handles large quantities of wool, and still retains customers who began to trade with him at the beginning of his business career. He built a residence at the corner of Jefferson and Hickory streets, which is surrounded with a beautiful lawn and which makes a very attractive home. He also has another house which he built and rents.

Mr. Mayhew is the owner of 320 acres of land, located eight miles south of Red Bluff, which he has subdivided into ten-acre lots, and which he is selling to actual settlers. This is called La Bonita tract. It is fine fruit land and is in a desirable location. In 1885 he made a trip East for health and rest, and traveled through twenty-four States and Territories. He returned much benefited in health.  

Politically Mr. Mayhew is a Republican and has been all his life. In 1876 he was elected Treasurer of Tehama County. He and his wife and two of their children are members of the Christian Church. He is a member of the  I. O. O. F., and for twenty years he has been a member of the Grand Lodge. [Pages 759-760]


JOHN GILMORE, a pioneer and well-to-do rancher of Red Bluff, came to California in 1856. He was born in Owensdale, Fayette County, Pennsylvania, December 24, 1835, and comes of an old pioneer family of Carbondale, that State. His father, John Gilmore, was born in Carbondale, owned a farm there, and there married Mary Baker, a native of New York. Mr. Gilmore was the youngest of their nine children, and is now (1890) the only survivor of the family, his parents having died more than twenty years ago. The whole family were members of the Baptist Church. Like the majority of farmer boys, the subject of this sketch went to school in winter, and worked on the farm in summer. Upon arriving at the age of twenty-one, he set out for the Golden State to make his fortune, coming by the water route, and he has not been disappointed in the results obtained from his labor here. He is now the owner of 600 acres of beautiful farm land, within three-quarters of a mile of the city of Red Bluff. He first located at Oroville, after which he came to this place and bought out a squatter, Robert Riggs. His original purchase was 160 acres, and he lived on it in a board shanty for awhile. From lime to time he has added to his property until it has reached its present proportions. For the most of it he paid $13 per acre. Now its value per acre is $100.

For a year Mr. Gilmore lived on his ranch without a partner to share in his joys and sor- rows. He then wedded Christine Dowell, a native of Illinois. There union was blessed with five children, all born at their present home. Four of them are living, namely: Frank, Dora, Charles and Olive. Dora is engaged in teaching school. Nine years after Mrs. Gilmore’s death Mr. Gilmore married Mrs. Elizabeth Fonday. She was born in Iowa, and removed to California when a child.

Mr. Gilmore built his present home in 1874, and has surrounded it with vines and fruit trees.

His principal farm products are wheat, barley and hay, of which he raises large quantities.  His sons are raising fine thorough bred horses, and he has devoted some attention to producing draft horses.

He has been a life-long adherent to the Re- publican party, and is a member of the Republican Central Committee. Mr. Gilmore is high esteemed as a worthy citizen of the community which he resides. [Pages 760-761]



CHARLES JOSEPH BECKER is a member of the general merchandise firm of Becker & Foster, cousins, who are industrious and good business men. Mr. Becker, unasked by himself and without much effort on his part, has just been elected one of the Supervisors of his county, which indicates to some degree the estimate his fellow-citizens have in his business ability and good judgment.  He is a Native Son of the Golden West, born in Shasta, July 19, 1857, the son of Joseph Becker, who was a native of Prussia, and who came to America in 1846, and for a time resided in St. Louis, Missouri. He married Margaret Foster, a native of Germany, and they had nine children, of whom ail but one are living. Mr.  Becker, the eldest but one of the family, received his education in Marysviile, Yuba County, and also followed barbering for nine years in that city, which he had learned of his father. In 1883 he began business with his cousin in Cottonwood, and the firm at once stepped to the front, and have since acquired a large patronage. They handle all kinds of goods, including lumber and grain in large quantities, and under their capable management their trade is steadily increasing, extending as far as fifty miles east and west. Politically Mr. Becker is a leading Republican, and is one of the directors of the Horticultural Society of the county of Shasta, and is ever ready to aid in the improvement and building up of the county. He is a member of the Board of Trustees of his school district, and was one of the men who helped build the tine school-house, which is now a fine improvement and credit to Cottonwood.  He is Past President of the N. S. G. W. at Marysviile.

Mr. Becker is still a single man, and has be- fore him in the usual course of events the prospect of a glorious future. [Page 763]


FRANK J. BARNES, a farmer of Yolo County, is a son of Abram and Grace Barnes, natives of Kentucky, who moved to Missouri, where the father served in the Indian war, and the mother, in the fort of Howard County, moulded bullets for the company.

It was in that county, in 1836, that the subject of this sketch was born, and when eighteen years of age he crossed plain and mountain to California, with his mother and the family; his father had come in 1850. The latter followed mining, but mostly farming and stock-raising to the time of his death in 1875. The widow died in 1877. Mr. Frank J. Barnes has been a resident of Yolo County ever since ihs arrival in California, excepting the two years he was in Butte County. He has had a farm of his own, raising grain and live-stock, excepting about three years in the butcher business in “Woodland. His present ranch consists of 130 acres of very fine land lying about three-quarters of a mile west of Woodland on the Main street road, and he has thereon a good two-story dwelling.

He was married in 1870, to Miss Harlen, a sister of J. H. Harlen, one of the most prosperous farmers of Yolo County. Mr. and Mrs.  Barnes have a daughter, named Leonora. [Page 762]


JAMES T. HADLEY, a well-to-do farmer of Yolo County, and one of the best known and highest esteemed, was born in Clermont County, Ohio, October 26, 1835, and was but two years of age when his parents moved with him to Henry County, Illinois. In 1861 he came to California by water, landing at San Francisco January 14, 1862. Shortly he went up to Sacramento with his wife, two children and a sister-in-law, landing on the steps of the Whiat Cheer House, when the ground was all under water. The next morning they started in a small boat across the country for Yolo. The swift current of the Sacramento was full of whirlpools and the oarsman failed to manage the boat. A fisherman near by saw the danger, hurried to their assistance and took the passengers back to Sacramento, except Mr. Hadley himself, who with the oarsman continued on their journey over fences and through orchards until they reached a barn belonging to the Gamble Brothers. After a few minutes rest they started out again, and the next point they reached was the Herald House, where they stopped over night. The next morning they reached Woodland, a very small place, and stopped over night, and the next day Mr. Hadley went on to Yolo, five and a half miles distant, but it seemed to him about twenty miles!  Shortly after his arrival there he was engaged by C. S. White and George W. Park, and he was there employed until the fall of 1863. He then went to Cherokee Fiat and followed mining there until 1864, when in May he returned to Yolo County. During the following February he visited Illinois with his family, and on returning purchased 160 acres of first-rate land in Yolo, and he has since been a prosperous farmer and a favorite citizen.

His parents were Harry and Sarah T. (Cooper) Hadley, the former a native of New York State and the latter of England.

In 1857, in Illinois, Mr. Hadley was married to Miss Sarah A. Moore, a native of Indiana, and they have five children: Lena M., William C, Julia E., Nellie E. and Walter P. Mrs.  Hadley died in California in 1871, and June 11, 1874, Mr. Hadley was united in marriage, in Illinois,’ with Miss Addie Glissen, a native of Ohio, and by this marriage there was one child, Grace Lee. Julia died in 1881 and Walter P.  was shot and killed March 24, 1889, probably by accident in taking a rifle from the shelf at his father’s house when no one was a witness.  He was a splendid specimen of young manhood, not only physically but also in qualities of heart and mind. He was born in Yolo County in the very house and in the very room where his handsome, manly form was laid out and prepared for burial. The afflicted family have the heart felt sympathy of numberless friends in their great sorrow. [Page 763]



JOHN BENJAMIN HARTSOUGH is a Forty-niner and one of the best known characters in Northern California. He is one of the oldest Americans born in the city of Detroit, Michigan. His birth occurred in the year 1811, twenty-five years before Michigan became a State. His father, Christopher Hart- sough, was born in New Jersey. In the war of 1812 he was captured by the Indians, carried into Canada, pressed into the service of the English as an alien and drove a team for the English army. He married Delight Haskius, a native of Connecticut. Her father, Elisha Haskins, was a wealthy citizen of Connecticut, who removed to Canada and settled in the Lon- don district, about the year 1825, the English government giving him lands for settling there.  This worthy couple, Mr. and Mrs. Hartsougli, were the parents of sixteen children. The subject of this sketch was the third of their five sons.

He received his education at Detroit, Ypsilanti and Ann Arbor. While in Rock Run, Illinois, in 1837, he was converted and soon afterward began to preach. In six months he was licensed as a local preacher and went into his first work at Leadmine, Wisconsin, on the Apple River district. When Mr. Hartsough left home to enter the ministry his father, who was a follower of the teachings of Tom Paine, did all in his power to prevent his son’s going and said many hard things of which he afterward repented. When they again met the father clasped his son in his arms and expressed his sorrow for the bitter things he had said. The young minister gave his father briefly the plan of salvation; he promptly accepted it and was converted. During Mr. Hartsough’s preaching in Illinois and Wisconsin his ministry was blessed with numerous revivals. He labored in the vineyard of the Lord in those two States for ten years.  

His health failed, and with the hope of securing a beneficial change, he came to this sunny clime, reaching California September 15, 1849. He engaged in mining until the first of May, 1850, with moderate success. Then he went over the mountains to carry provisions to the emigrants who were starving and took their poor stock in exchange. The stock was pastured for a month, after which it was driven over the mountains. At this work Mr. Hartsough made considerable money. In 1851 he opened a grocery and provision store near Nevada City, supplying the market with his own cattle. This business he continued two years, during which time he purchased the ditch stock of a broken- down company. He put the ditch in order and kept it lour weeks. It, however, proved a per- petual Sabbath-breaking business, and because of that he sold it to his partner, who, in three years, realized nearly half a million of dollars from it. This ditch is still running. His partner sold it and went to San Francisco in 1862. There he engaged in stock speculations, met with reverses and drowned himself in the bay and his body was never recovered.  Mr. Hartsough sold his store and shop and removed to Yolo County, where he engaged in farming and stock-raising. In 1863 he was elected to the State Assembly, and, being a stanch Republican, used his best endeavors to keep his State in the Union. At that time there was a strong force at work to take it out, and he became a power on the side of the Union. It was largely due to his efforts and to those of a few of his colleagues that the State was saved and kept from the bloodshed and disgrace that would have followed. During a great deal of his ministry his work has been gratuitous and done for the love of the cause.  He has rendered much efficient service in helping to build churches in Northern California.  In Redding, where he now resides, he purchased the church site for $500 with his own money, and carried on the enterprise of building the church to its completion.  In 1864 he settled his business, put his land into money, and with some stock removed to Contra Costa County. From that time until 1890 he had regular work in the ministry. He is now in his eightieth year and has retired from active ministerial labors. He owns a small farm in Colusa County and a home in Redding. He tells the following little reminiscence of his preaching:

In February, 1850, while he was holding services in a new store in Georgetown, El Dorado County, a lot of gamblers from a tent near by rushed down the street, ringing bells and rattling tin pans, shouting “ Fire! fire!” His congregation made haste to get out. In a quiet voice he asked them not to be excited but to go quietly. Soon afterward they all came back, accompanied by a number of those who had made the disturbance and sat quietly to hear the sermon.

In 1838 Mr. Hartsough wedded Miss Lucy Titus, of Michigan. Their union was blessed with two children, one of whom died and the other, Christoplier, resides in Oregon. After four and a half years of married life his beloved companion died of pleuro-pneumonia, and he was left with his two infant sons. In 1858, fifteen years after her death, he married Mrs.  Eliza Stoirs, a native of Missouri, reared in Wisconsin.

“While Father Hartsough has attained his four-score years, he is still quite active and walks perfectly erect with a firm, quick step.  He carries such a benevolent smile on his face that one cannot fail to see that he loves God and is at peace with Him and with all the world.  [Pages 763-764]


WILLIAM E. HOPPING has the honor of being a California Forty-niner. He comes of old English ancestry. Three brothers, John, James and Abram Flopping, came to America and settled on Long Island.

When the Declaration of Independence was signed John and James espoused the cause of the colonies and Abram remained true to his King. After the close of the war Abram removed to Canada and, it is claimed, dropped the final g in his name. This is the history of the names of Hopping and Hopping in America. The brothers who joined their interests with the colonies remained on Long Island. For many years their posterity lived in New Jersey. In that State Mr. Hopping’s father. Primrose Hopping, was born. He married Nancy Chasey, also a native of New Jersey. To them were born three daughters and two sons, of whom only two are now living, — the subject of this sketch and his sister, Mrs. C. Stewart, of Oak- land, California. She weighs 300 pounds and Mr. Hopping tips the beam at 870. He received his education in the East and there learned the butcher’s business.  Mr. Hopping came around the Horn in the old ship Balance, landing at San Francisco, November 28, 1849. This was the last voyage the old ship made, and she now lies buried at the foot of Pacific street. The history of this ship as given to Mr. Hopping by her captain is as follows:

A New York merchant had lost several of his ships by the English. In order to get even and get revenge he fitted out an American privateer that captured, during the war of 1812, several prizes, and finally this ship, which he named the Balance in honor of the fact that she made his account even with the English. How old she was when captured is not known, but she sailed under American colors thirty-seven years, until 1849, when she was pronounced un-seaworthy.

Mr. Hopping began work at his trade in the Fulton Market, corner of Washington and Jack- son streets, San Francisco. The following spring his desire to dig for gold sent him to the mines.  His first experience was at Murphy’s mines in Calaveras County, where he was successful.  Then he mined up as far as Mud Springs on Logtown Creek. He subsequently went to Big Canon and he and Charles Crocker mined these together. He spent a year at Big Canon and was very successful in his mining operations.  During that time he made a trip to Sacramento to secure supplies, as they were scarce ac the camp. In 1852 Mr. Hopping came to Shasta County and mined at French Gulch. There he began butchering and carried on that business in connection with his mining interests, continuing the same until March, 18G4. He after- ward received the nomination from the Republican Party for Sheriff of the county. He was elected and served two years, and at the end of that time was re-elected. At the close of his second term he engaged in quartz mining in the Highland mine. It paid well for a time but they finally lost the vein. Mr. Hopping still owns a half interest in it. He was elected to and held the office of County Judge for eight years, until the adoption of the new constitution.

He soon after became register of the land office and filled the position until 1882, when he was again elected Sheriff of the county. At the writing- he has the nomination for the same office another term. He is ex-officio tax collector of the county. Mr. Hopping has much to do with thieves and murderers, both as Judge and Sheriff, and has conveyed many convicts to prison, as many as eight at onetime and none ever escaped from him.  Mr. Hopping was married in New Jersey, in 1863, to Miss Harriet Hopping of Hanover, New Jersey, his half second cousin and a lady he had known before coming to California. Five children have been born to them, three of whom are deceased. Those living are Hattie and “William, both born in Shasta County.  During the late war Mr. Hopping was a strong Union man, and did all in his power to uphold the Government. He is a Royal Arch and Council Mason and is Past Master of his lodge. He is a member of the Society of California Pioneers. [Page 765]


 DAVIS N. SHANAHAN, one of the early settlers of California, and a prominent horticulturist of Shasta County, was born in Cass County, Michigan, December 27, 1833, the son of Peter and Sinia (O’Dell) Shanahan, the former a native of Maryland, and the latter of Virginia. The mother was a daughter of Gabriel O’Dell, a Kentucky pioneer. They had a family of live children, of whom our subject is the only survivor. He was reared and educated on a farm in his native State, and there learned the carpenter’s trade. He came to California in 1854, and worked in the mines

near Georgetown and vicinity for more than a year, with reasonable success. He then purchased a squatter’s claim, which he worked one year, and then sold out and removed to Colusa County, where he took up Government land, which he worked two years, but by reason of a drought his crops failed both years. Next he removed to a ranch near Colusa, and for two years engaged in raising hogs; next he removed to Chico, Butte County, but being sick and not meeting with satisfactory success, he moved six miles east of Colusa, where he purchased a ranch and farmed three years. He then sold out and removed to Yolo County, where he purchased railroad land, which he improved and farmed ten years; then he sold out and returned to Colusa County, rented land a year, then leased a large ranch for two years, and finally came to his present ranch four and a half miles east of Anderson, Shasta County, where he now has 300 acres of choice fruit land. He has already planted 5,000 French prunes, and 500 other fruit trees of different varieties, and also 2,000 vines. He is still improving and planting. The trees that are bearing at four years old yield $100 per acre, and the prospects are most flattering for a grand success in the fruit business in this portion of the county.

Mr. Shanahan was united in marriage with Miss Elizabeth V. Huff, December 27. 1857, who is a native of Georgia, and the daughter of Thomas Huff, a Virginian. They have five children, four sons and one daughter, all of whom have been spared to them. The children are as follows: Thaddeus W., born in Colusa County, is a lawyer of Anderson, and has just been elected on his third term to the State Assembly, and has just finished an exciting campaign, stumping his district for the Democratic party, and by his capable efforts overcame a Re- publican majority in his district; Eugene, born in Colusa County, has a farm near his father’s;

Chester, born in Butte County, is interested with his father in the ranch; Ross, born in Sutter County, also with his father; the daughter, Mary Elizabeth, was born in Yuba County, and is now the wife of Burt Chamberlain, and resides at Cottonwood. Mr. Shanahan has seen much of the vicissitudes of early life in California, and is still a hale and hearty man. He has affiliated with the Democratic party all his life.  He is a worthy citizen, and taken an active interest in the educational matters of his district; is a School Trustee and Clerk of the Board.  His enterprise in horticulture will be of value to his part of the county, as it shows what the soil will do, and enhances the value of the property, as one acre for fruit is worth ten for other purposes.  [Pages 766-767]


JOHN G. COOPER.— In biographically sketching the lives of the reputable and worthy citizens of Redding, California, the writer finds few, if any, more deserving of honorable mention in a work of this character than John G. Cooper.


He was born in England, of English parents, June 3, 1821. His education was obtained in his native land, but, as he says, he is still studying. He worked at the manufacture of silk ribbon and silk hosiery; was clerk or book- keeper for a contractor and builder; later on, learned the harness-maker’s trade and worked at it for some time.

In the spring of 1844 he emigrated to the United States and settled in Plymouth, Marshall County, Indiana, where he purchased a farm and improved it by building, etc. This property he sold, and afterward bought a farm in St.  Joseph County, same State, where he remained twelve years. In 1855 he came to California, via the Isthmus route, and landed in San Francisco. He engaged in dairying at San Francisco and in San Mateo County for twelve years.  While there he was elected to and held the office of Justice of the Peace. He afterward removed to Napa County, purchased 640 acres of land, which he improved and for which he secured a perfected title, and there engaged in fruit culture. He remained on that place from 1867 till 1880. In the latter year he sold out and removed to Redding. Here he purchased thirty-four acres of unimproved land in the then young town. At the time of its purchase it was occupied by Indians. Mr. Cooper cleared it up, built his home and planted trees. He has disposed of it all except his home and orchard and vineyard, which he has reserved for his own use. He has eight buildings in the city, consisting of dwelling-houses and a store, all of which are occupied.

Mr. Cooper was united in marriage in 1847 to Miss Barbara Russell, a native of Ohio, and coming from an old American family. Her father was a soldier in the war of 1812. Their union was blessed with two children. One is deceased, and the other, John Henry, born in California in 1856, is a resident of Oakland, this State. He is employed as proof-reader on the Oakland Enquirer,’ is married, and has two children.

Mr. and Mrs. Cooper are faithful members of the Methodist Church. Mr. Cooper’s father was a minister, who led his son to a  knowledge of the gospel. At the early age of fourteen years he experienced religion and joined the church, and through all these many years he has been an intelligent and earnest worker, standing up for the cause of God and humanity every-where. He is now an ordained elder in the church at Redding. Mr. Cooper is enthusiastic over the wonderful growth and development of California. He is a member of the society known as the Sons of St. George, the object of this society being to influence Englishmen in this country to become citizens of the United States. He is also an active temperance man and a Good Templar. For many years he has cast his vote with the Republican party. He has become thoroughly identified with this country and its grand institutions, and no native- born citizens could be more staunchly American than he. [Page 767]


JOHN WESLEY CONANT is a prominent and influential citizen and miner of Redding, Shasta County, California. A brief sketch of his life is herewith given.


Mr. Conant was born January 14, 1845.  His parents, Jacob and Matilda Conant were both natives of Teimessee, and of German ancestry. They had nine children, six of whom are still living. The subject of this sketch spent his boyhood in Tennessee, Illinois and Missouri, and learned the mason and stone-cutter’s trade.

In June, 1862, he enlisted in the service of his country in Company H, Eighth Missouri Cavalry, and in 1864 re-enlisted in Company K, Twelfth Missouri Cavalry. He saw a great deal of active service; was bearing a dispatch to General Lyon when the General fell; was in the battles of Lone Jackstone Mountain and Spring- ford, and many of the battles of the Army of the Potomac. They were sent to join Sherman at Savannah; were in the light at Port Selma on the 8th of April; from there went to Montgomery, and drew up to tight at Lime Creek on the evening of the night that President Lincoln was killed. He was with his squadron on the right flank, and nearly all of them were killed, wounded or fell into the hands of the enemy.  Mr. Conant received two shots: the ball which entered his breast he still carries behind- the shoulder blade; and the other one entered his side and broke his lower rib and he cut it out with his razor. He joined his regiment in June, 1865, and was discharged in April, 1866.  In 1867 he went to the plains in the western part of Kansas and drove a team for the Government; then engaged in carrying dispatches to Fort Harper; in 1868 he went as a scout for Custer and Sheridan, and was on the raid to Fort Cell, in February they rescued the white woman who had been carried off by the Indians, and returned to Fort Hays. He was in the massacre at Salmon Falls, then went back to Fort Harper, and thence to his home in Southern Kansas in April, 1869. There he engaged in work at his trade in Douglas County. In 1870 he married Miss Alice LImberger, a native of Kansas and a daughter of Captain Lmberger. By her he had one daughter, Maggie M., born in Douglas County.

Mr. Conant came to California in 1872, and settled at Stockton. From there he went to Chico, and worked for General John Bidwell.

In the fall of 1873 he engaged in mining in Plumas County, and the following March he came to Shasta County. Next he went to Yreka, where he was employed at driving stock.  In 1875 he went to the southern part of Siskiyou County, near the Calahan ranch, and there made a good find. In 1887 he took out over $5,000, taking $320 in a single day, no piece larger than ten dollars, and from that down to fine gold. After this he went with a pack-horse to the mountains and spent some time there prospecting. Finding nothing on the Salmon River or in the New River country, he came to the Niagara Mine, at French Gulch, and worked two months for W. T. Coleman. Then he started on another prospecting tour, and arrived at Squaw Creek, Shasta County, July 5, 1855.  There he found several good mines, and named them as follows: the Mountain Rose, the Black Bear, the Logan and the Uncle Sam. Shortly after locating them he sold the first three to Edward Riley, of New York, for $45,000.  Then he developed the Uncle Sam, the Hawk- eye, the Mocking Bird and the Grizzly Bear; built a steam saw-mill and a ten-stamp quartz mill, and took out $138,600. He sold the claims to the Sierra Butte Mining Company, supposed to be an English syndicate, for $150,- 000.

At this time Mr. Conant made a trip East, re- turning to San Francisco in March, 1889. Since then he has invested largely in real estate, lu April, 1889, he purchased a ranch of 640 acres on Feather River; came to Redding in June and bought the Reed ranch, 700 acres, one-half mile from the town ; has invested in 8,608 acres of timber laud and a number of city properties.  In 1889, at a cost of $8,500, he built his house and barn in Redding, where he resides with his family. On his ranch near Redding he has planted 13,413 fruit trees. He has also devoted much time and attention to stock, having purchased 102 breeding mares. Among his other possessions are the ferry and the ferry-boat.  Mr. Conant is still the owner of a number of mines, which he is developing. His long experience has been of much value to him and also to the county. He put down the first tunnel, 497 feet perpendicular, and thus demonstrated the fact that the deposits extend down some distance. This has done much toward reviving the mining interests of Shasta County, for mining, in a measure, was dead when he began operations. Through his influence capitalists have been induced to make investments here, and many new mines are now being developed.  There are fourteen stamp mills within twenty- live miles of Redding.

Mr. Conant is a man of remarkable endurance and courage. He has roughed it in the mountains through sunshine and storm, through rain and snow, and knows what it is to live on short rations. At one time he dug a tunnel thirty-three feet deep, having nothing to eat ail the time he worked except beans — beans baked, beans boiled and beans roasted. A man of strong determination and will power, he has made him- self of great value in capturing criminals who had sought refuge in the mountains. He captured three murderers in Shasta Valley, and re- turned them to the authorities in Siskiyou County. Mr. Conant followed them four days and nights, and fired several shots at them before they surrendered. Their crime was the murder of one Walter Scott, in Squaw Valley. He also captured two stage robbers, for which he received a reward of $1,600. With two liired men as assistants he rode ninety-five miles, night and day, and found them in a canon on the north fork of the east fork of Trinity River. He came upon their camp and jumped his horse down a bank eleven feet, covered them with his pistol, captured them and delivered them to justice. With the reward thus obtained he was enabled to continue his prospect- ing at the time. While on the plains Mr.  Conant was with Dick Cody (Bufialo Bill), and went by the name of Ruckskin Jack. He was captured by the Indians, under command of Charley Rrent, who, after detaining him a few hours, turned him loose.

Mr. Conant’s present wife was nee Miss Nel-ie Hamilton, a native of Sacramento. They have three children: John S., who was born in Virginia City, and Nellie E. and Mary C, born in Redding.

Our subject is a strong Republican. During the Harrison campaign he accepted the bluffs of the Democrats and won $8,773 from them on the result of the election. He is a member of the G. A. R. ; was reared by Methodist parents, who gave him the name of the founder of Methodism. Mr. and Mrs. Conant live in their beautiful home in Redding, surrounded by flowers, pictures and music; and the stone cutting and mason, by his perseverance and is now a wealthy citizen of Redding.  [Pages 767-768]


ADAM SCHUMAN, one of the prominent business men of Cottonwood, and a member of the firm of Price & Co., comes from a country that has furnished America with many of her best citizens in all the departments of business. He was born in Baden on the Rhine, in Germany, January 17, 1832. His parents were industrious and well-to-do farmers, and he received his education in his native land, and also learned the trade of butcher; he also served six months in the German array.  He had two uncles in the United States, who were making money and were pleased with America’s free institutions, and they accordingly wrote to our subject’s father to sell and come to America, which he did in 1851, settling on a farm in Illinois. Our subject worked with his father two years on this farm, and then opened a meat market, which he conducted for a year and a half. In 1858 he came to Red Bluff, California, and for a time was engaged in various kinds of business. In 1870 he became acquainted with his partner, and in 1874 they formed the general merchandise firm, which they have since conducted. They have a large business, in one single year selling as high as $65,000 worth, and in another year they purchased $32,000 worth of hogs. They also have been heavy dealers in cattle selling as much as $80,000 worth in a single year.

Mr. Schuman is one of those men who has by his persistent industry and hard work with his own hands made a valuable property, and such has been his industrious habits that now when he does not need to work, he keeps right on as busy as ever, not afraid to take hold of any work* that he thinks is necessary to do. At any time he can be found at work among his men, helping and superintending the building of the large brick store, which is to be by far the largest and best store in Cottonwood. This firm has done a large credit business, and while the house has made a great deal of money they have also lost many thousand dollars by bad debts. They are not only the oldest but wealthiest firm in their town, owning several thousand acres of land, and having a large amount of money at interest. June 8, 1890, a lamp exploded in their residence, which resulted in the burning of the house and furniture, including an expensive piano, the loss amounting to about $6,000. They at once commenced the erection of a commodious and substantial brick residence, which they have just completed.  Mr. Schuman was married in 1851, to Miss Elizabeth Slater, a native of Germany, and they had four sons, all of whom are deceased. They have one daughter, Lou, who is married to J.  H. Campbell, a thorough business man residing in Chicago. Mr. Schuman’s religious faith is that of a Druid, and his political views are Republican. In the time of the great civil war, he took his stand with the Union party and has since remained with them. He is not only a hard-working business man, but a thoroughly intelligent one; and work and intelligence combined with generosity and honesty have made him a well-to-do business man, and a citizen of character and influence. Page 769]


WILLIAM AND GEORGE MENZEL, enterprising business men of Redding, California, are natives of Polk City, Iowa. William was born January 26, 1856, and George, March 4, 1858, sons of William Menzel, a native of Germany. The family came to Shasta County, California, in 1860, and settled at Millville, where the father purchased a farm.  In 1861, while attempting to cross Cow Creek in a skiff, he was drowned.

After the death of their father, as soon as they were old enough, William and George did ranch work and any thing they could get to do to earn an honest living. They subsequently learned the blacksmith’s trade and, in 1881, opened their blacksmith and wagon-making business in Redding. Honesty and industry won for them success in this undertaking. In 1886 they established the Redding Meat Market, and since that time have conducted both enterprises. In July, 1890, their whole block and meat market were consumed by fire. They were not insured and their loss amounted to about $3,500. The day after the fire they rented a building and opened their market, and are conducting the business with their characteristic energy. It is their intention soon to erect a new and better building.

The Menzel brothers are both single gentlemen. Both have passed all the chairs in the I.O. O. F. They have acquired considerable property, and are representative men in their line of business. They affiliate with the Democratic party, and are liberal and excellent citizens.  [Page 770]


CALVIN OWINGS is one of the hardy sons of the East who crossed the plains to California in 1850.

He was born in Warren County, Kentucky, February 11, 1829. His father, William Owings, a native of Kentucky, married Miss Esther Johnson, who was also born in that State, a daughter of Calvin Johnson. They reared ten children, eight of whom are now living.  The subject of this sketch spent his youth and received his education in Indiana. When he was twenty years of age he came to this State.  The company with whom he traveled were nine months in crossing the plains, and many of them died with cholera.

Like other newcomers to this State, Mr.  Owings had his raining experiences. For three months he mined at Yreka. His party found a nugget of gold that weighed live pounds and ten ounces, and he himself took out $51 from a single pan.

When he quit mining he went to Middletown and remained three years. Then he purchased eighty acres of land at Cottonwood and was there three years. From that place he went to the north fork of the Cottonwood, purchased land and lived there fifteen years. From time to time he added to his original purchase until he had 630 acres. This he sold. In 1887 he came to Redding, purchased a home and improved it, and has now retired from business.  After living a life of single-blessedness for fifty years, Mr. Owings became acquainted with and married Mrs. Moore. She is a native of Missouri, born December 20, 1839, and a daughter of D. J. Guin, also of that State. They have an attractive home in Redding, where they reside. Since the war Mr. Owings has been a Republican. Both lie and his wife are members of the Baptist Church, and are highly esteemed citizens of Redding. [Page 770]


JOHN GEORGE is one of the early settlers of California, and is the builder and proprietor of the St. George Hotel, Redding.  He was born in Ligonier, Westmoreland County, Pennsylvania, November 16, 1828.  His parents, John and Margaret George, were both natives of Germany, came to this country when children and were reared in Westmoreland County. His father was a farmer and a dealer in stock. They had five children, four sons and a daughter, three of whom are now living. When twenty-two years of age Mr. George arrived in Placerville, El Dorado County, California, out of funds but with willing-hands and a determination to work. That was in July, 1850. He engaged in mining on Weber Creek. His first pan of dirt had a piece of gold in it like a kernel of corn and it weighed one dollar. This he thought was encouraging, and he went to work, meeting- with fair success. He dug there until the following January, when, hearing of the gold excitement at Gold Bluff, he went to that place only to find it was a hoax. He then returned to Sacramento and from there followed the tide of emigration to Salmon River and Shasta Flats (now Yreka).  He purchased a train of fifteen mules and loaded them with a cargo of provisions, his destination being Bessville, on the Salmon River. He arrived at that place about the 20tli of February, and sold his cargo and train and engaged in mining. This, however, did not prove a success.  On the 15th of March there came a heavy snow storm, which completely closed the roads, so that no provisions could be taken across the mountains. Mr. George had only kept a short supply for himself, and the other miners also had short rations. They had a few dried apples, on which they subsisted for seventeen days, with now and then a venison, which disappeared like snow before a ho” sun. Mr. Bess bought in the first flour — 600 pounds^3arried by six pack mules. The camp in which Mr. George was at work was the first one he passed. They accosted him for a sack of flour, which he refused. They asked him where he was going and why he declined to sell it. He replied that he was going to Bessville and that he had a grocery store and some friends there. They remonstrated no more with him but fell in with the train. As they passed camp after camp the men all fell into line and followed him, and when they arrived at their destination there was a line of nearly 200 men all eager for the flour. They called a meeting and resolved to divide the flour equally. A man was appointed from each mess to receive the share his mess was entitled to, and if any one was found to misrepresent he was to forfeit his share. Then they appointed a weigher to give each camp its quota, which was two and a fourth pounds to each man on the river. The owner sat at one side trembling and not knowing what was going to be done with him.  After the distribution, one stalwart man stepped up on a stump and said: “Now, gentlemen, what shall we pay this man for his flour?” A voice was heard to say, “ One dollar per pound.”

Another said “ Two dollars,” and a third, “Two dollars and a half.” The last was put to a vote and carried. They paid him $1,500 and gave him three cheers. When this supply gave out, Mr. George and his friend, Nick Meyers, went across the mountains to Orleans Bar to buy provisions. On their way they came to an Indian fishery, where they camped eight days. They traded the brass buttons off their breeches for salmon. When they arrived at Orleans Barthey found provisions plenty, flour fifty cents per pound and meals a dollar and a half at a restaurant, which was kept by an old colored man named Dickerson. After remaining there seven days, each of them purchased a sack of flour at fifty cents per pound and some bacon at the same price, and, with their packs on their backs and their rifles in their hands, they started back over the mountains to Bessville, a distance of forty miles.  Upon reaching their destination they found that trains had been there with provisions, and flour was selling at forty cents per pound and other things in proportion. Mr. George continued to mine there till the month of June and then removed to Weaverviile, Trinity County, where he was engaged in mining, packing and merchandising for three years, meeting with varied success. In 1854 he came to Shasta County and engaged in gardening, draying, fanning and hotel-keeping, which he has continued up to the present time. He built the St. George Hotel in Redding in 1889, and has since been a resident of this city. He has invested in town lots, owns the livery stable and some dwelling-houses.  Mr. George married -Miss Sarah Bohm, daughter of Captain Jacob Bohm, of East Providence, Pennsylvania. They have had eight children, only three of whom are living: Oliver M. and James W., born in Pennsylvania; and Charles G., born in Shasta County, California.  They are all worthy and respected citizens — one a miner, another farmer and the third a black- smith.  

Mr. George takes pride in stating that he is one of the seventeen Republicans that voted in Shasta County for John C. Fremont, and that he has ever since been a stanch Republican. Mrs.  George is still living. She is a member of the Methodist Church. [Page 771]


JAMES E. ISAACS, District Attorney of Shasta County, was born in Shasta, California, June 29, 1855. His father, Josephine Isaacs, was born in England in 1824, and was a pioneer of Shasta County. He married Selada M. Downey, a native of New Jersey.

Her father, A. L. Downey, is a pioneer of California; is now eighty-seven years of age, and resides at Sacramento. Five children were born to Mr. and Mrs. Isaacs, only two of whom are living. Mr. Isaacs followed several vocations in life, latterly that of a merchant. His death occurred in 1873. His widow is still living.  James E. was educated in the public schools of his native place, attending school from seven until fifteen years of age. The rest of his education has been obtained in the dear school of experience. His father had made large sums of money, but was unfortunate and lost heavily, and died leaving his estate embarrassed. Thus the care of his mother and her three children devolved upon the subject of this sketch. He engaged in the dry goods and fancy goods business at Shasta, which he continued until 1677.  In that year he was elected Justice of Shasta Township, and held the office two terms. In 1880 he was admitted to practice law by the Superior Court of Shasta County, and since then has devoted his time to that profession.  Mr. Isaacs has given special attention to the land office law, and is considered the best authority on that subject in Northern California.

His father was a stanch Republican, but he has espoused the cause of the Democratic Party; and that party, either to show their appreciation of the popular young lawyer or to secure a candidate that they were nearly certain to elect, nominated him for the District Attorney of the county. He was elected by the handsome majority of 321, while the Republican majority for President that year was ninety-six. He has since been unanimously nominated by his party

for a second term, and his prospects for reelection are very flattering. Previous to this time, from 1880 till 1884, he was deputy district attorney of the count}’, under District Attorney Taylor. May 1, 1882, Mr. Isaacs led to the hymeneal altar a native daughter of the Golden West, Miss Mary E. Leschinsky. She was born in Shasta County, the daughter of A. F. Leschinsky, also a pioneer of this county. Two children have been born to them: Linie and Edith Thyra.  

Mr. Isaacs is a charter member and one of the organizers of Mount Shasta Parlor, No. 35, Native Sons of the Golden West. He takes a deep interest in the order, and for four years held the office of District Deputy. In 1886 he was elected a Grand Trustee of the Grand Parlor of the State, and was re-elected to the office in 1887. Mr. Isaacs is an agreeable and courteous gentleman. He is one who has in his composition the necessary amount of push and go-ahead attitude necessary to succeed in what ever enterprise he undertakes. [Page 773]


WILLAM PAUL HARTMAN was born in France, September 10, 1841, the son of French parents. He received his education in his native land, and came to California in 1858. January 21 he crossed the Scott Mountains, being twenty-two hours in crossing, and reached Yreka the following day.  Upon his arrival at that place he began to work at the first thing that offered, which happened to be blacking boots and talking care of a bath- house. September 1, 1859, he went to Red Bluff and entered the barber shop of L. H. D. Lang to learn the trade, remaining there until 1862. He then went to Weaverville, Trinity County, and opened a shop. The prices of those times were seventy-tive cents for cutting hair, seventy-five cents for a bath, and twenty- five cents for a shave. In 1863 the great fire occurred; the town was destroyed; he was burned out, lost all he had, and was himself badly burned and received scars which he will always carry. After that he purchased a shop and continued in business there until April, 1865. He then removed to Shasta and opened a shop, in which he did business till September 27, 1889, when he came to Redding. While in Shasta he bought a residence which he still owns. He is now running a good shop, his son Carl having charge of one of the chairs.  Mr. Hartman was married, February 24, 1867, to Miss Malia S. P. Caroline, a native of Germany. They have had three children, burn in Shasta, namely: Frederick Joseph, Carl W.  and William P., Jr.

The subject of this sketch has been an active business man, having influence in political cir cles and also in the societies of Shasta. He is a member of the A. O. U. W.; is a Master Mason; and has passed all the chairs in I. O.  O. F. In 1870 he received a handsome gold watch chain, with emblems appropriately engraved, from his brother Odd Fellows, as a token of their regard for his fidelity to the interests of the order, after having served two terms as Noble Grand. Mr. Hartman prizes it highly and wears it only on rare occasions.  In 1876 he was elected chairman of the Re- publican Central County Committee of Shasta County. He served in that capacity ten years, until March 8, 1886, when he resigned; and he did the party such eminent service that, November 30, 1882, the officers elected showed their appreciation of the work he had done by presenting him with a beautiful and costly gold watch, appropriately engraved, “For services rendered the party.” Mr. Hartman has held the office of School Trustee for twelve years.  He was twice elected Public Administrator of the county, the first term by a 202 majority and the second by 268, when the rest of his ticket was defeated. He ran for office at eleven elections and never was defeated. He resigned his school trusteeship to come to Redding. He says he still holds rank in the Republican party, and the Democrats hate him worse than the devil hates holy water. [Page 773]


JOHN SPELMAN is a business man of Red- diner, California, and a worthy member of the Grand Army of the Republic. He is one of the brave men, who, when his country’s life was threatened by a powerful armed foe, flew to her aid and faced danger and death to save the country. To such brave men the Union owes a debt of gratitude which can never be paid nor can gold ever measure the value of the services so gallantly rendered. It was at the tender age of sixteen years, in 1862, when the great war of the Rebellion began to assume gigantic proportions that he enlisted in the United States Marine Corps. He was in the memorable engagement at Octoraro when the Merrimac attempted to sink them and both ships ran aground. They escaped and were in several engagements and bombardments. A part of the time his ship was flag-ship for Admiral Porter. He was in active service for four years and was honorably discharged at the close of the war, when he returned to his home and engaged in the peaceful vocations of life.

Mr. Spelman was born in the west of Ireland, February 22, 1846, the son of James and Bridget Spelman, both natives of Ireland. While the Emerald Isle is his native land he knows nothing of it by experience, as he came with his parents to the United States when three years of age. There were five children in their family, of whom Mr. Spelman is the only survivor. Upon their arrival in this country they settled in New Hampshire, where the subject of this sketch was educated in the public schools and where he learned the barber’s trade. At the close of the war he engaged in business in Brooklyn, New York. In 1868 he emigrated to San Francisco, and for twelve years ran a barber business in that city in the Occidental Hotel. He was also in the Monis Hotel, Santa Barbara, and for a time in the Golden Eagle Hotel in Redding. He has been in business in Redding for five years, from 1879 till 1884.  At one time he ran a shop in Salt Lake City.  In 1868, in San Francisco, he wedded Miss Margarite Rock, a native of Pennsylvania. To them were born two children: James and Mary.  In 1871 Mrs. Spelman died, and six years later, Mr. Spelman married Miss Norton, a native of Boston. This union has been blessed with nine children, two of whom are living: Alice and Irene.  

Mr. Spelman is a Republican. He holds the office of Health Inspector of the city of Redding. [Page 774]


A Memorial & Biographical History of Northern California: Chicago : The Lewis Publishing Company, 1891

Transcribed by Martha A Crosley Graham, 12 October 2008 - [Page numbers listed with each Biography]


Site Created: 12 October 2008

Martha A Crosley Graham

Rights Reserved: 2008