Arrived at Clear Creek in 1850 from Humboldt Bay with mining partners Charles Camden and John Hindman. Walked the entire way. Were among the very first to arrive from the coast. While enroute, stopped long enough to build the first ferry across the south fork of the Trinity River in Trinity County. Gold mined with partner Camden until 1852 when he purchased Schneider's Trading Post and property located at the junction of Clear and Crystal Creeks from Gilmore (first name unknown) and Samuel Francis who had preempted the property; Francis was paid $575. Immediately began building the 21-room, 3-story Tower House and incorporated Schneider's existing log cabin/trading post into the hotel. Built the Globe Hotel at Shasta in 1852. Built the first wagon road from Shasta to the Tower House. Married Mary Jane Shuffleton in 1852 in a double wedding ceremony with Charles Camden and sister Philena. Their marriage was the 4th recorded in Shasta County and the first known double wedding ceremony to take place in Shasta County. Elected as one of the two delegates to attend the state railroad convention in San Francisco to advocate the northern route of the railroad. Divorced in 1854 and never remarried. His was the first-known divorce in Shasta County. Financed improvements on the wagon road from Shasta to Whiskey Creek with Caleb Wingate and Nathan Ferrington in 1853. The Tower House became famous for the beautiful orchards and gardens he planted around it. Tower planted the first peach trees north of Sacramento and was possibly the first person to experiment in the raising of fruit and berries in Shasta County. Elected as one of the first two Shasta County Supervisors in 1856-58. Died of typhoid fever in 1865 at age 45. Buried on his property.

SOURCE: The Dictionary of Early Shasta County History - by Dottie Smith - copyright 1999

Biography Index