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Madera Biographies: SHEDD

JOHN H. SHEDD

One of the leading citizens of Borden, John H. Shedd has been successfully engaged in agricultural pursuits in Madera county for the past thirty years, and in the prosecution of his calling has gained an excellent reputation as a man of ability and worth. Beginning life for himself in boyhood in a small New England village, he has been in truth the architect of his own fortunes, and has worked himself up from a condition of comparative poverty to a place of affluence and influence. He comes of old colonial stock, the emigrant ancestor of the Shedd family having settled in New England. A son of Alvin Shedd, he was born April 11, 1836, in Orleans county, Vt. His father was a farmer and tanner, and was born and reared in New Hampshire, living there until after his marriage with Laurinda Smith, also a native of that state, then moving to Vermont.

Born and bred on a Green Mountain farm, John H. Shedd began the battle of life for himself at the age of sixteen, learning the shoemaker’s trade, at which he served an apprenticeship of four years. In 1857, needing a change of climate on account of ill health, he came by way of the Isthmus of Panama to California, and for three years thereafter was engaged in mining in Tuolumne county. Recovering his former physical vigor, he settled as a farmer in San Joaquin County, near Stockton, where he remained two years. Removing to Owens River valley in Tulare County in 1863, he took up land, and was there engaged in agricultural pursuits until after the memorable earthquake of 1872. From August 1872, until April 1873, Mr. Shedd was a resident of Stanislaus County. Removing from there to Fresno (now Madera) county that spring, he bought his present ranch, which now contains sixteen hundred acres of land, and has since carried on a very extensive and profitable business as a grain and stock raiser.

In 1869, in San Joaquin county, Mr. Shedd married Elizabeth M. Salmon, a native of Wisconsin, and they are the parents of five children, namely: Albert B., George M., Lelia A., John F. and Dee Truman (now dead).  Taking a keen interest in local affairs, Mr. Shedd has been identified with the public welfare of town, county and state since coming to the coast, he has served as supervisor of Inyo county, and for four years filled the same office in Madera county.
 
Guinn, J. M., History of the State of California and Biographical Record of the San Joaquin Valley, California, (Chicago: Chapman Publishing, 1905), page 679.

Transcribed by Harriet Sturk.

Last update: October 17, 2012 
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