J. P Munro-Fraser.

History of Solano County...and histories of its cities, towns...etc. .. online

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When returning home, in 1867, the " Santiago de Cuba," the steamer on
which he had taken passage, was wrecked on the coast of New Jersey,
near the city of Atlantic ; seven of the passengers were drowned, but Mr.
Farnham, at the imminent risk of his own life, succeeded in saving that
of Miss Ketcham, the young lady whom a year later he made his bride.
The union so romantically forecast has been blessed by three children,
John W., Frank B., and Mary Louise.



THE HISTORY OF SOLANO COUNTY. 349

FORSTENFELD, M., was born in Germany in the year 1841, and came to
America in March 1855, and settled in New York, where he remained till
1861, at which time he came to California and first resided in San Fran-
cisco, remaining there until 1863, and then removed to Vallejo. In July,
1875, he entered into partnership with Jacob Steffen, in keeping a meat
market, which business they still continue. He married in Vallejo, in
September, 1867, Miss Lizzie Snider, a native of New Orleans, who was
born February 9, 1852.

FRISBIE, ELEAZER, was born in Albany, N. Y., in 1829, and remained
there until September, 1846, when he sailed for California with Steven-
son's Regiment, arriving in San Francisco in March, 1847. Was quar-
tered in that city till the spring of 1848, when he accompanied a detach-
ment of his regiment to the mines to look for deserters, of whom there
were a number. This service occupied two months. The force was em-
barked on a government schooner, which took ten days to reach Sutter's
Fort (Sacramento) from San Francisco. On the return they took some
Government horses, and drove them to the city, after which Mr. Frisbie
was taken ill with a fever, from the effects of which he did not recover
for a whole year. In 1848 the regiment was disbanded. He then, by the
advice of his physician, proceeded to Sonoma for the benefit of his health,
and, after recovering, opened a store in that city, remaining there until
1850, when he removed to Benicia, and carried on a butchery business,
shipping meat to San Francisco for two years. About this time the city
of Vallejo was started, he therefore moved thither. In 1854 Mr. Frisbie
was elected a Justice of the Peace, served as an Associate Justice, and was
the first regularly appointed postmaster for the city of Vallejo. an office
he held from 1855 to 1857. Mr. F. resided continuously in Vallejo, from
1851 to 1865, when he removed* to Russian River Township, Sonoma
county, CaL, and there lived till the fall of 1870, being, for that period,
engaged in farming. In that year he returned to Vallejo, and was em-
ployed by the Cal. P. R. R. Co. as wood agent. In 1872 was in the em-
ployment of the Vallejo Land and Improvement, and Vallejo Gaslight
Companies, as collector, till Nov., 1875 . In February, 1876, he commenced
a dairy business, at Point Farm, one mile from South Vallejo, which he
still carries on, shipping large quantities of milk to San Francisco daily,
as well as supplying the surrounding district. Mr. Frisbie married at
Fairmount, N. J., June 25, 1858, Carrie E. Klink, of Syracuse, N. Y., by
whom he has seven children living ; John B. ; Steven H. ; Cynthia J. •
Phcebe A. ; Edward E. ; Carrie E. ; Alice K.

FRISBIE, JOHN B., the second son of Eleazer B. Frisbie and Cynthia
Cornell Frisbie was born at Albany, N. Y., on the 20th day of May A. D.



350 THE HISTORY OF SOLANO COUNTY.

1823, and after having finished his academic course of study at the Al-
bany Academy, entered the law office of District Attorney Wheaton one
of the ablest lawyers at the New York Bar ; with whom he remained
for four years or until he was of legal age and admitted to practice in
the courts of the State of New York. He immediately took a prominent
position in the politics of the State, and received, for a young man, a large
patronage and remunerative business ; after some two years of close at-
tention and continued study, having somewhat of a martial spirit, he was
elected Captain of the Van Rensselaer Guards, acknowledged to be the
best drilled and finest looking independent company of the State. At
this time, 1846, war existed with Mexico, and a number of the officers
and privates of this corps being desirous to enter the army in
the campaign against Mexico, Captain Frisbie joined them and
recruiting a full company in the city of Albany, he attached it as
Company I to the regiment of Col. Jonathan D. Stevenson, then at
Governor's Island and about to sail for the then distant Province of
California. The regiment arrived after a six months passage at San
Francisco, then nothing more than a little hamlet situated in a little cove
of the harbor and called " Yerba Buena." This was in March, 1847, and
the resfiment continued in service until disbanded after the close of the
war in July, 1848. Capt. Frisbie then immediately engaged in business
with Gen. Vallejo and occupied himself in the management of that
gentleman's extensive estate, and in projecting great public improvements
at both the cities of Benicia and Vallejo. To secure the location of the
Mare Island Navy Yard at Vallejo he purchased the island from Victor
Castro and obtaining from Commodore Appleton P. Jones and Gen. Per-
sifer F. Smith and other influential gentlemen a favorable report for that
locality. The government made it the United States Naval Station of
the Pacific. Not satisfied with the achievement to advance the interests
of the new city, with indomitable will he set to work to open up railroad
communications with the interior of the State and inaugurated the Cal-
ifornia Pacific to connect the cities of Marysville and Sacramento with
Vallejo. This road was speedily built and for a time gave a marked
impetus to the growth and importance of the town. The population
rapidly increased, fine wharves and warehouses were built and it speedily
became the great shipping port for the whole of the northern portion of
the State. Branches or feeders to the main line were then projected to
tap the valleys of Napa and Sonoma and the Russian river country, but
the immense expenditures consequent upon the prosecution of these im-
provements so embarrassed the original company that they were compelled
to succumb, and the road and its property fell into the hands of a rival
company, whose business interests were antagonistic to the growth of the
little city ; as a consetpience Vallejo soon lost its prestige of becoming a



THE HISTORY OF SOLANO COUNTY. 351

great commercial city, and in its decline carried ruin to its projectors and
disappointment to all interested in its welfare. But Gen. Frisbie was not
the man to yield to mere temporary embarrassment and fortunately at
this time (our relations with the neighboring republic of Mexico being in
a critical condition) he was called to Washington to confer with the au-
thorities, and was dispatched by the President and Secretary of State to
the city of Mexico. As the result of his mission amicable relations were
established between the two countries, and the President, Gen. Diaz,
recognized by our government. But Gen. Frisbie during his residence in
the city of Mexico became so captivated with 'the country and was so
generously treated by its people that he determined to make it his future
home and he removed his family to Buena Vista, a beautiful suburb of
the city of Mexico, and is now engaged in developing some very rich
mines in the Real del Monte district some sixty miles from the capital.
It will thus be seen Gen. Frisbie has always been pre-eminently a public
spirted man, of great energy, enterprise, and of unbounded hospital-
ity and in all public positions was ever regarded as the peer of the ablest
men among all the pioneers of the golden State.

FRISBIE, LEVI C, the elder son of Eleazer B. Frisbie and Cynthia Cor-
nell Frisbie, was born in the city of Albarfy, N. Y., on the 1st day of May
A. D. 1821; after a preliminary course of education in his native city, he
completed his academic term in the Buffalo Academy and commenced
the study of medicine in the office of Dr. William Bry and surgery with
Dr. Alden March in the year 1837, and graduated at the Albany Medical
College February 23, 1841. Immediately after receiving his diploma he
commenced practice with his old preceptor in the city of Albany and
continued the same without interruption until the year 1850 ; when from
overwork during the cholera epidemic of 1849, his health became so un-
dermined as to necessitate entire suspension of business and compel him
to seek mental quietude and physical recuperation from travel and change
of scene and association. After four years thus spent his health was so
far restored as to enable him to resume practice in the year 1854, since
which time he has been an active practitioner of his profession in the city
of Vallejo and is now the oldest one in the county of Solano. He has
been twice elected president of the medical society of his native county
and has officiated as the first President of the Pacific Medical Society,
comprising the counties of Solano, Sonoma and Napa. In the year 1851
in connection with Gen. Vallejo and Gen. John B. Frisbie he laid out the
plan of the city of Vallejo, which the same year by a majority vote of
the people of the State and a two-thirds vote of the Legislature became
the capital of the State. In the year 1858 he married Adela Vallejo the
second daughter of Gen. Vallejo, by whom he has one child, now the



352 THE HISTORY OF SOLANO COUNTY.

wife of D. McCarthy, Jr., Treasurer of the city of Syracuse in the State of
New York. The Doctor is now in his fifty-eighth year and having de-
voted the best years of his life to his profession, has retired from active
practice, and in the enjoyment of an ample competence is content to pass
the remainder of his days among the people and amid the scenes he loves
so well.

FROST, JAMES, M. D., arrived in California in 1856 and settled as an
apothecary on Mare Island, where he continued till 1866, when he
removed to Vallejo and opened his present place of business. Doctor
Frost graduated at the Medical Department of the State University in

1877, and is now one of Vallejo's practicing physicians. On May 18,

1878, he was elected to fill the high position of President of the Board of
Health, which honor he still retains, with credit alike to himself and his
fellow citizens ; is also examining physician to the United Order of
Workmen, as well as holding the same position to the Knights of
Pythias. The subject of our memoir married on February 6, 1859, the
daughter of John and Mary Foley, of Albany, New York, by whom he
has six children, Arthur H., Edmund F., Mary E., Amelia G., Frances J.,
and Elizabeth E.

GOOKIN, THOMAS P., was born May 9, 1824, in Portsmouth, New Hamp-
shire, where he remained till the year 1848, when he went to Boston,
Mass., residing there until January 1, 1849, on which date he left for
New York City, sailing therefrom, on January 27, for California, and
arrived in San Francisco on July 6th of the same year. Has since been
a permanent resident of this State and county. He is a member of the
Pioneer's Association of this place.

GORHAM, ABRAHAM, foreman painter in the Department of Yards and
Docks, Mare Island Navy Yard, was born in England, October, 1826. In
1837 he went with his parents to South Australia, where he served his
apprenticeship to the painter's trade, and in 1850 came to California, arriv-
ing in San Francisco in August of that year, where he worked at his trade.
In 1852 he leased the boarding house known as the Thistle Inn, which
then stood near the corner of Sansome steeet and Broadway, carrying
it on with good success till 1854, when he went to Santa Clara valley and
pursued farming for one year. In April, 1855, he came to Vallejo, and
entered into partnership with David Hudson in the building and painting
business, which he prosecuted for one year ; and in 1858 he commenced
work on Mare Island, where he has been engaged most of the time since.
In 1864 Mr. Gorham purchased the property, known as the Eureka
Hall, which he owned till 1878.




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THE HISTORY OF SOLANO COUNTY. 353

He married in October, 1848, Miss Elizabeth Ide, by whom he has,
Henry, born in August, 1849 ; George, born in August, 1851 ; Abraham
James, born September, 1853 ; Thomas Robert, born March, 1856 ; and
Franklin Walter, born Marcb.,1865.

HANKS, J. G., a detective of Vallejo, was born in Summit county, Ohio,
on August 6, 1829, where he resided until 1849, when he sailed from New
York on May 13th for Calfornia on board the ship " Far West." Off the
coast of Barbados they were wrecked, and, being picked up by a whaling
vessel, were taken to Panama. On the voyage up the Pacific coast our
subject once more suffered shipwreck in the loss of the "Chimera," at
Monterey. He per force landed and found his way thence to San Fran-
cisco on foot. Mr. Hanks arrived in Solano county on March 11, 1850,
coming first to Vallejo, and after, going to Benicia, and there opening a
blacksmith's shop. Leaving this business, however, he next proceeded to
the mines in El Dorado county, but in 1855 once more returned to Val-
lejo only for two months, when he again went to the mines and there
stayed until 1860. We next find Hanks mining in Nevada. Here he
became a member of the police force of Virginia City. After five years
service he established an express line at Crystal Peak, Cisco, which he
maintained till 1869, when, in connection with his father, he commenced
an hotel business at Truckee, being also Deputy Sheriff of the county,
under C. Gentry. Has been instrumental in several of the noted captures
of both this and the State of Nevada, and to-day enjoys the confidence of
the officials and his friends. In 1871 he established a brickyard in Val-
lejo, many of the buildings of the city being manufactured from material
off his premises.

HARRIER, DANIEL W., Groceries. Born in Maryland, in 1834, but re-
moved to Bedford county, Penn., with his parents when still very young.
In March, 1852, he emigrated to Jefferson county, Iowa, leaving it in
1854, for California ; he first settled in Sierra county in August of that
year, and at once commenced mining operations. In 1861 he removed to
Nevada City, Nevada county, and started a livery stable, at the same
time running the stage and express line from that point through Lake
City, North Bloomfield, Wolsey, Moore's Flat, and Eureka South, a dist-
ance of thirty miles. In March, 1866, the subject of our memoir came to
Vallejo, and taking charge of the Metropolitan Hotel (now the Sherman
House) ; he remained its occupant for eighteen months. Seceding from
the hotel, Mr. Harrier engaged in the occupation of stock buying, purchas-
ing, also, in connection therewith, the butchering business, of John Burch-
am. This transaction was effected on August 5th, 1868, and the above
undertaking was carried on by him until the month of December, 1875.
23



354 THE HISTORY OF SOLANO COUNTY.

On the 27th of January, 1879, he purchased the business of J. E. Willis-
ton, in the premises now occupied by his grocery store. D. W. Harrier is
one of the leading men in the city. He was among those who started
the Vallejo Bank, and was its President from 1876 to 1878. In 1873
he was elected City Trustee, which office he held for two years ; served
on the Board of Supervisors in 1876 ; and was enrolled a School Trustee
in the fall of 1877. Mr. H. married March 5, 1865, Mrs. Sarah M. Walker,
the daughter of John Lee of this city. Their children are, Lizzie R.,
Lewis G., Victor V., Jessie V., Daniel W., Maud, and Austin.

HARVEY, HONORABLE JOEL AINSWORTH.— The subject of this me-
moir was born on June 24, 1838, at Herkimer, in the county of that name,
State of New York. His early days were passed on the slopes of the
Hassancleaver Hills, and at the Fairfield Academy, New York, where he
was grounded in that education which has, in after life, so well fitted him
for the prominent positions which he has since maintained, with credit to
all. In 1857 he left the Eastern States, and located in Elgin, Ills., which,
after a residence of about two years, he left for California, in the spring
of 1859, taking the route across the Plains, and arriving in the Golden
State in the fall of that year, at Placerville. At the time the great
Washoe excitements of 1860 were the talk of every one and stirred all
into a phase of excitability, recalling the halcyon days of the earlier dis-
coveries, he with the rest penetrated into Nevada, but not having a like
fortune with others, he drifted back with the unlucky, and finally halted
at Genoa, in Carson Valley, then the capital of Western Utah.
. When the Territory of Nevada was first organized, Mr. H. was ap-
pointed Clerk of Douglas county, of which Genoa was the county seat,
and retained the position, from term to term, until the first month of the
year 1867. While retaining this responsible office, he studied law with
such success that he was admitted to its practice, and during the follow-
ing year removed therefrom, and resided successively at San Francisco,
Reno and Wadsworth, being employed at the latter place as agent for
Wells, Fargo & Co., whence, in 1869, he was transferred to their Vallejo
office. In 1871 Mr. Harvey organized the Vallejo and San Francisco Ex-
press, the affairs of which he managed until 1874, when he was elected
to the County Clerkship of Solano county, which distinguished position
he held for two terms, and was then nominated by the Republican party
for County Judge, but was defeated by the present holder, Judge John
M. Gregory, Jr. In March, 1878, he resumed his practice at Vallejo,
where he now resides. The honorable career of Mr. Harvey has thus far
culminated in his being sent to the Convention, in June, 1878, as county
delegate, he having received the largest majority of any delegate on the
Republican ticket. He married August 13, 1863, Alameda L. Hub-



THE HISTORY OF SOLANO COUNTY. 355

bard, at Carson City, IS evada, by whom he has one son and five daughters,
viz : Joel H. ; Amanda L. ; Mary A. ; Inez A. ; Blanche L., and Maude F.

HILBORN, THE HONORABLE S. G.— The subject of this sketch is a na-
tive of Winot, Androscoggin county, Maine, having been born there on
December 9, 1834. In early lire he and his brother, E. P. Hilborn, were left
orphans, when the labor of working the home-farm devolved upon these
two youths. In the meantime, E. P. Hilborn emigrated to California, in
the midst of their agricultural pursuits, leaving his brother to attend to
the farming business, and his education ; which, as the following record
shows, was crowned with success for both, E. P. Hilborn being now a
prominent grain merchant of Suisun. Mr. Hilborn received the elements of
that education which has brought him into such prominence in California,
first at Bethel Hill, Oxford county, Maine, and afterwards at Tuft's Col-
lege, where he graduated in 1859 ; afterwards becoming principal in Oak
Grove Academy, Falmouth, Maine, where he remained a year, at the end
of which he entered the law office of the Hon. William Pitt Fessenden, at
Portland, Maine, being admitted to the bar in 1861. In this year he emi-
grated to California, arriving at San Francisco, via Panama, in the month
of August of the same year. Having passed a few months in the office
of Whitman & Wells, a legal firm of Suisun, he removed to Vallejo, and
there established himself in the practice which he now enjoys. The Hon,
S. G. Hilborn is a man of mark in his county, as his public record will
show, while privately he is known to be worthy of the highest esteem
and respect. Since his arrival in Vallejo he has held, in order, the follow-
ing places of trust and honor : City Attorney, in the year when it was
incorporated ; a City Trustee for two terms ; Supervisor and Senator ;
while his last work of distinction has been in connection with the Consti-
tutional Convention, to which he was a delegate. Mr. H. has also prac-
ticed his profession with marked ability, and has been retained in a large
number of the leading and most intricate cases that have had their inci-
pience in the county. He is President of the Vallejo Land Improvement
Company, as well as a participator in other schemes of a public and pri-
vate nature. He married Lou E., second daughter of Caleb and Louisa
Root, a native of Madison county, N. Y., in 1863, and has one child,
Grace A.

HOBBS, ISAAC, (deceased,) born in Sanford, Summerworth county, State
of Maine, 27th November, 1821. In the yeai 1839 he left his birthplace
and went to South Boston, but remained there only a short time. From
there he proceeded to Great Falls, New Hampshire, where he worked at
his trade, that of millwright, remaining there till 1844, when he went to
to Glowchester, New Jersey, being employed in his own trade till the



856 THE HISTORY OF SOLANO COUNTY.

spring of 1847, when he went to Tuscaloosa, Alabama, and set in opera-
tion the machinery of several cotton mills in that place. In March, 1849,
he started across the plains to California. ' On reaching Gila river, he, in
company with three others, manufactured a " dug-out," and proceeded
down the Pino river, calculating that the jouney would only occupy three
daysman d laid in provisions accordingly, but they were twenty- one days
on the trip, and on getting to their destination, found the rest of the
the party had preceded them by eight days. Continued the journey to
San Francisco, where they arrived in October, 1849. Mr. Hobbs, asso-
ciated with some others, organized a company, and, going to Bodega
erected a saw-mill, but at the time, lumber could be secured in San Fran-
cisco for the simple" freight ; the mill was therefore not put in operation.
He again returned to San Francisco andembarked in thebusiness of a house-
carpenter, at"" sixteen dollars a day, wages. This was in the summer of
1850 ; in the fall of that year he visited the southern mines and engaged
in prospecting until the spring of 1852, at which time he began farming
on the Feather river, but, contracting fever and ague, in the fall of the
year he was obliged to abandon agriculture and return to San Francisco.
In April, 1853, he returned to the Atlantic coast and his native home, and
on May 31 of the same year married, at McConnellville, Ohio, Miss Sarah
A. Maxwell, at the residence of her sister, Mrs. C. L. Barker; she was
born in Chester county, Pa., October 18, 1826. With his bride he returned
to California via Panama, arriving in San Francisco November 5, 1853,
when he once more commenced business as a house-builder, which he
continued till 1855, when, with his family, he came to Vallejo and en-
gaged as millwright, on Mare Island. In the fall of 1859 he moved to Eel
river, Humboldt county, and began farming, and remained there till the sum-
mer of 1861, when they returned to Solano county and located 160 acres of
land, in section 34, township 4, range 3, on the Suscol ranch, but on March 3,
1863, a bill was passed by Congress giving the land back to its original
owner, (who claimed it under the Spanish grant,) when they were removed
by the Sheriff of the county. Mr. H. then returned to Vallejo, in 1865,
and was elected Sheriff in 1869 for a term of two years. Once more Mr.
Hobbs visited (in 1876) the scenes of his youth, as well as the Centennial
Exhibition, returning to Vallejo, but never again engaged .in active busi-
ness up to the time of his death, which occurred on February 12, 1878.
He was a Mason of old and high standing, as also a member of the Val-
lejo Pioneer Association. Their children are: Mary B., born at Vallejo
April 17, 1857 ; Ida S., born April 7, 1859 ; Eunice Esther, born at Eel
river, Humboldt county, February 26, 1861 ; Charles B., born in Sulphur
Spring valley, Solano county, August 22, 1863 ; Heila Grace, born in Val-
lejo, November 21, 1865, and Maxwell, born May 17, 1872. There are
two infants deceased : George, born August 17, 1855, and died July 27,
1864 ; Isacc, born December 21, 1865, and died September 27, 1869.



THE HISTORY OF SOLANO COUNTY. 357

HUBBARD, JOHN E., retail dealer in domestic wines, cigars, etc., was
born in Santiago, Chile, South America, in 1842, and in 1848 came with
his parents to San Francisco, where his father opened the first brass
foundry and coppersmith shop on the coast. Remained in San Francisco
till 1852, when the family removed to Santa Clara county, the subject of
this sketch being sent to school there. In 1857 he accompanied his pa-
rents back to Chile, and with them returned to California after a stay of