John F. Van Schaik
Again we are called upon to chronicle the taking off of an old and highly respected citizen of Shasta County. John Fonkes Van Schaick, after a lingering illness, died in Shasta at 1 o'clock A.M. Sunday, August 25th, at the age of 68.
John F. Van Schaik was born in the State of New York, near Utica, we think. He learned his trade--that of a painter--in the city of New York, after which he moved to New Orleans, where he resided for many years. From New Orleans he emigrated to San Francisco, working
there at his trade at very remunerative prices. In the year 1852 Mr. V. settled in Shasta, he and his partner pitching their tent under the large oak tree now in the door-yard of Mrs. A. E. Taylor, formerly the Mix place. Mr. Van Schaick was not merely a mechanic, but also an artist of no ordinary capacity, as his work in San Francisco, Shasta and Reading will testify. He was also enterprising. At an early day, having faith in the growth and permanency of Shasta, he purchased ground at high prices and erected quite a clock of frame building, which after erection for a time paid him handsomely. But the flush times ceased, and the depreciation of property ensued; and failing health rendering him unfit for labor, for a number of years Mr. V. found it hard work to "make both ends meet."
He resided in Reading from the fall of 1872 until the fall of 1873, when he became the Democratic nominee for County Treasurer, and was elected; also re-elected in 1875 and 1877, consequently he died before he had completed the first quarter of his third term, and died trusted and respected. He was a man courteous, kind, generous, and of the strictest honesty, and
possessed of a fund of general information. Although having no relations near, he received all the care the most affectionate ones could have bestowed on him from Mr. and Mrs. D. H. Dunn, whose house has been his home for years. He was buried in the old cemetery on Monday, August 26th. The funeral services were held in the Court House, the Rev. Mr. Saxton, of Red Bluff, officiating, assisted by the Shasta choir. The pall bearers were D. H. Dunn, W. H. Bickford, District Attorney Taylor, Sheriff Hull, Hon. A. R. Andrews and Hon. C. C. Bush. The concourse that followed his remains to the grave was large, quite a number from the neighboring towns being present.

Transcribed by Robin Bills Sept. 2002
SOURCE: Reading Independent August 29, 1878
Biography Index