John Brown.

History of San Bernardino and Riverside counties / with selected biography of actors and witnesses of the period of growth and achievement.. (Volume 3) online

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3 1833 01149 4934









Editor for San Bernardino County


Editor for Riverside County

Selected Biography of Actors and Witnesses

of the Period of Growth

and Achievement



Copyright, 1922


Chicago, III.


Stephen Henderson Herrick — It would be difficult to conceive of
broader and greater benefits flowing from the influence and character of
one individual and affecting in a constructive and progressive way the
development and future of the Riverside community than those attribut-
able to Stephen Henderson Herrick during his residence of nearly forty
years in California. He was one of the men of vision as well as prac-
tical resourcefulness who comprised an important syndicate of fowa
capitalists attracted to the development of that section lying east and
north of the original Riverside Colony. The primary problems involved
in its development was a dependable irrigation system. That system was
first inaugurated in the famous Gage Canal. Mr. Herrick as head and
member of the Iowa syndicate furnished the support and co-operation
to Matthew Gage which were indispensable for the construction of that
irrigation project on a broad and stable basis. On part of the land
benefited by this enterprise Mr. Herrick in 1887 set out the first plant-
ings of orange trees, and of the extensive holdings he has had and helped
develop he still retains a large part, indicating that his interest in the
country is not that of a speculator but one who is willing to wait for the
fruits of his constructive enterprise to ripen. While so much of his time
has been given to the material development, his interest has been deep
and abiding in the broader growth and progress of Riverside. He has
been a factor in the organization of some of the leading banks of this
locality, notably the Citizens National and the Security Savings of River-
side, and for a number of years was president of both institutions. He
is now Chairman of the Board of Directors of the latter bank.

Mr. Herrick represents one of the oldest lines of Colonial New Eng-
land ancestry, although he traces his line back over 1,000 years to Eric,
a Norse chieftain or king. One of his ancestors was a judge of court
in Massachusetts, and was directly responsible for putting an end to
the infamous practice of witchcraft. The English branch of Herricks
came to America in 1660, settling at Salem and Beverly, Massachusetts.
S. H. Herrick was born at Crown Point, Essex County, New York,
son of Stephen Leonard Herrick, a Congregational minister who for
twenty-five years was in charge of the church at Crown Point. Later
he removed to Fairhaven, Vermont, and from there to Grinnell, Iowa,
where for many years, until his death in 1886, he was connected with
Grinnell College as a teacher and trustee. The mother of S. H. Her-
rick was Delia Ives, a native of Vermont. Her parents were of Scotch
ancestry and moved from Connecticut to Vermont in December, 1799.
for a large part of the way, blazed trees marking the route for their
slow going caravan of ox teams. While on this pilgrimage they re-
ceived the news of the death of Washington.

Stephen Henderson Herrick was reared and educated in Iowa, at-
tending public schools and after completing a full course in Liberal Arts
at Grinnell College in 1865, he received the A. B. degree. After a further
two years course in law and theology he received the degree of Master
of Arts. His alma mater also elected him to membership in the Phi
Beta Kappa honorary societv. Instead of entering upon a professional
career he took up mercantile business at Grinnell, and continued that
connection for twenty- three years. He was also deeply interested in his
alma mater, and in 1883, after the buildings of Grinnell College had
been destroyed bv a cyclone, he came west to Oakland, California, and
for several months was busy throughout the state in making collections,
particularly for the college museum. He acquired a great abundance of
material for this purpose besides interesting the various transportation


companies and also through the aid of the faculty of the University of
California. Mr. Herrick then returned East, and in 1885 became asso-
ciated with others in the organization of the East Riverside Land Com-
pany. His chief associates in this were ex-Governor Merrill of Iowa,
Colonel S. F. Cooper, former U. S. consul at Glasgow, and Senator De
Los Arnold of Iowa, and the late A. J. Twogood of Riverside. These
men organized for the purpose of developing the mesa land east of
Riverside and purchased several thousand acres in that vicinity from the
Southern Pacific Railway Company. This was subdivided, the town of
Highgrove being platted. In this development Mr. Herrick and his
associates worked closely in co-operation with Matthew Gage so that
the Gage Canal would directly benefit the East Riverside tract. Mr.
Herrick remained president of the company tor several years, and the
company was dissolved in 1915, after all the land had been sold. Under
the Gage Canal system Mr. Herrick planted the first orange trees, and
he continued his planting over several large tracts, and still retains a
large share of this property. Other tracts have been touched with his
enterprise as a developer, all in the section east of Riverside, where he
has owned or developed about four hundred acres.

Mr. Herrick is president and his son, S. L. Herrick, vice president
and manager of the "Herrick Estates, Incorporated." The various prop-
erties and interests of the family are concentrated for more effective
business management. Mr. Herrick is also president of the Lemona
Heights Company, owning 180 acres of citrus fruits above the Gage
Canal, upon which the company developed the water. At one time he
owned considerable land in West Riverside, Corona and Rialto.

Mr. Herrick at the time of the World's Fair in Chicago in 1893 had
charge of the large exhibit of Griffin & Skelley, this being the firm that
is now manufacturing the famous Del Monte brand of food products.
Following his work at Chicago Mr. Herrick remained East four years,
and during that time was one of the managing directors of the Grinnell
Savings Bank, of which he had been president prior to coming to Cali-

In 1903 Mr. Herrick was one of the prominent organizers of the
Citizens Bank of Riverside and was its first president. In 1904 this
bank took over the Orange Growers Bank and soon after became a
national bank, with enlarged capital. The Security Savings was organ-
ized in 1907, owned bv the Citizens National. Of this bank Mr. Her-
rick was the first president. In 1916 the First National Bank of River-
side was taken over bv the Citizens National and the Riverside Savings
Bank was absorbed bv the Security Savings Bank. At this time Mr.
Herrick resigned the presidency of the National Bank to devote his entire
time to the Savings institution, but in 1920 resigned to accept the posi-
tion of chairman of its Board of Directors. He is also vice president
of the Citizens National Bank and vice president of the Citizens Bank
of Arlington. He was one of the organizers of the Fast Riverside Water
Company, and has been president practically since its inception. He is
president of the Riverside-Highland Water Company and president of
the Monte Vista Citrus Association.

Mr. Herrick is affiliated with the Grand Army of the Republic, having
served in the Civil War in the 46th Regiment of Infantry of Iowa
Volunteers. A man of deep religious convictions, he has all his life
given much attention to church and educational causes. He is Deacon
Emeritus and one 6f the advisory board of the Congregational Church,
and has frequently officiated as a lay minister, even while president of
the bank holding services in various places. In former years he found


time to share the duties of politics natural to a man of his high standing.
At the age of twenty-one he was elected a delegate to the Iowa State
Republican Convention. He also served as mayor of Grinnell and was
at one time a member of the Republican County Central Committee and
has represented his party in the California State Convention. He is
deeply interested in his alma mater. The beautiful Herrick Chapel,
which adorns the Grinnell College campus was made possible by his
benefactions. It is a family memorial, as three generations were educated
there — Mr. Herrick's father, himself and his son.

September 3, 1869, Mr. Herrick married Miss Harriet E. Fellows, a
native of Princeton, Illinois, and daughter of Ephraim Fellows, who was
born in New Hampshire and who became extensively identified with the
pioneer development of Colorado. Mrs. Herrick is of English and
Revolutionary ancestry and a member of the Daughters of the American
Revolution. They have two children, the son, Stephen Leonard Herrick,
being referred to above as active associate with his father. The daugh-
ter, Lida, is the wife of J. Lansing Lane, recently of Hollister, California,
now of Santa Cruz County. Mr. and Mrs. Lane have two children,
Derick and Elizabeth.

Isaac Allen Holeman has been a resident of Riverside twenty years,
and while he has invested capital in this district he has taken little part
in active business affairs. He is a loyal and enthusiastic Calif ornian, and
a man of the highest standing in Riverside, where his fellow citizens
respect his judgment and integrity and know him as one of the most
public spirited men in the community.

Mr. Holeman was born in Warren County, Illinois, May 11, 1858,
son of Reuben and Suzanna (Crabb) Holeman. His parents moved
to Illinois at an early date, and spent most of their lives on a farm in
Warren County. Isaac Allen Holeman grew up in Central Illinois, grad-
uated from the city schools of Monmouth, and after completing his edu-
cation returned to the farm and gained his prosperity from the corn
belt of Illinois. In 1900 he moved to Riverside and purchased an orange
grove, but has practically retired from its active management, though
he holds considerable stock in the Cressmer Manufacturing Company.

Mr. Holeman is a democrat in politics, like his father before him.
He has never been interested in public office as an honor, though he
performed his duty for a number of years as road overseer in Warren
County, Illinois. At Richmond, Indiana, in 1886, Mr. Holeman married
Miss Melvina A. Stephenson, who was born in Indiana, representing an
old American family of Revolutionary stock and English descent. Mr.
and Mrs. Holeman have two sons: George S., born in 1887, graduated
in medicine from Stanford University, subsequently took special work in
surgery, and is now engaged in a successful practice at Portland, Oregon.
November 16, 1920, he married Miss Estella Buckley, of San Francisco.
The younger son, Roy Holeman, born in 1889, completed the scientific
agricultural course at the State University and is now a practical agri-
culturist at Van Nuys, California. In 1916 he married Miss Nellie Ross,
of Riverside.

J. D. Langford. — The career of J. D. Langford of Redlands exempli-
fies the making of a successful business man through strenuous experi-
ence and a disposition never to stop or waiver on account of failure or

He borrowed a hundred dollars to come to California, and had three
dollars left when he arrived on March 26, 1888. The remainder of that


year he was employed on the Raymond place. The following sixteen
years the scene of his work and experience was at Highland. Most
of his employment was in the orange industry. Mr. Langford bought
his first acreage, only two and a half acres, near Highland Station in 1890.
planting it to oranges and nursery stock. It was unprofitable, since
the nursery was late in planting, market was dull and prices low. An-
other factor in his ill success there was the burning of a barn, in which
his horses were destroyed. He then showed the disposition of one
who could face defeat without being discouraged. Going into the moun-
tains, he took charge of the saw mill property of the Highlands Lumber
Company at Fredalba Park for two years. Returning to East High-
lands, he became foreman of the orange ranches of C. H. Sherrod and
Frank Gore, and after the first year was appointed receiver, general
superintendent and manager, a post of duty he held six years. He later
superintended these properties for H. M. Olney and C. A. Sherrod, and
on leaving them became superintendent in charge of the nursery and
salesman for H. H. Linville. About that time he began speculating in the
buying and shipping of oranges, and after a year turned his entire time
and attention to the productive end of the orange industry, a line in
which his talents and energies have been most successfully displayed
since he came to California.

A number of years ago Mr. Langford became associated with A. H.
Gregory on the Williams tract. The laying out, grading, planting, in-
stallation of the irrigation system on this tract were under his personal
supervision. He planted 665 acres. During this time he and Mr. Greg-
ory also bought the four hundred eighteen acres owned by the Riverside
Highland Water Company just east and south of Colton. A beginning
had been made of a peach plantation, and they continued the planting
of this fruit over two hundred and twenty-five acres. Mr. Langford
made a contract with the City of San Bernardino to take charge of the
sewage water for twenty-five years, and laid a line from the city to this
ranch. This business was incorporated under the name the Delta Water
Company, and Mr. Langford was interested in the ownership of the prop-
erty for five years, being president of the Delta Water Company. The
operations on the William tract were conducted as the Redlands Security
Company, a close corporation, with Mr. Gregory and Mr. Langford as
half owners, Mr. Gregory being the president and Mr. Langford, sec-
retary and manager. During this time Mr. Langford was also engaged
in the fertilizing business. In 1909 he organized the Carlsbad Guano
Fertilizer Company, purchasing guano caves in Carlsbad, Mexico, and
operating a mixing plant at Redlands. He was president and general
manager of the company.

After selling his fertilizer business and his interest in the Delta Water
Company Mr. Langford removed to San Francisco, and in 1911 en-
gaged in the wholesale brokerage business, handling heavy machinery
supplies, including locomotives, steam cranes and shovels and a general
line of heavy machinery, trucks, etc. The five years he spent in San
Francisco was a strenuous time, and altogether he lost about ten thousand
dollars of his individual capital. His associates were young men who
lost their heads, and practically the entire responsibility of the manage-
ment devolved upon Mr. Langford. When the young men sold to others
the new partners added additional gravity to the already tangled condi-
tions, and it was only by a supreme effort that Mr. Langford guided
the enterprise away from disaster.


He had in the meantime retained his orange interests in San Ber-
nardino County, and his first task on returning to Redlands was to put
his groves in first class condition. He was then selected as general man-
ager by the Crown Jewel Association, and took charge of this business
October 23, 1916, and his business headquarters are today at the plant
of the Crown Jewel Packing House at Alabama and San Pedro streets
in Redlands. In 1912 he and Mr. Gregory divided their holdings, Mr.
Gregory taking over the books and corporate name of the Redlands Se-
curity Company, while Mr. Langford received a hundred acres as his share
of the two hundred and five acres then owned by the company. Mr.
Langford incorporated as the J. D. Langford & Company and under
this title has continued his business as an orange grower. He has since
purchased twenty acres of improved oranges in the same section, and
having cleared up his other interests is now giving his entire time to the
orange production and marketing.

This brief outline is intended to convey some of the facts and cir-
cumstances under which Mr. Langford has toiled toward a success and
prosperity that he splendidly merits. His early life was one of compara-
tive poverty. When he was only twelve years of age he had to perform a
man's part on the home farm. He worked horses when he was so
small that he had to turn the collars in order to reach the buckles. It
was Mr. Langford who planted the first orange grove in the West River-
side District, twenty acres for Dodd & Dw^er.

In 1886, at the age of eighteen, Mr. Langford married in Missouri
Miss Ida L. A. Hingle. Their only child died in infancy and his wife
a year and a half later. Soon afterward Mr. Langford came to California.
A year later he went back to Kansas and married Miss Ida McReynolds.
The children of this union are two sons and one daughter. The oldest,
J. Roy Langford, born November 24, 1890, was educated at Redands
and married Miss Cora Dudley. The second son, Cleveland Paul Lang-
ford, born January 14, 1896, was educated in Redlands, married Edna
Hass and has a daughter, Lucille Pauline. Cleveland P. Langford joined
the National Army for service in the World war April 11, 1918, being
with the 363rd Regiment of Infantry in the 91st Division. After train-
ing at Camp Lewis, Washington, he left for New York June 26th, em-
barked for England July 6th, from England went direct to France, and
after two weeks of rest and training went almost directly to the Ar-
gonne front. He was with an automatic rifle squad, served in the trenches
about two weeks, went over the top on the 26th of September, and was
a participant in the strenuous program of the Argonne fighting until
gassed on the first of October. The following months he spent at a
base hospital, then rejoined his company, and soon after the signing of
the armistice was stricken with the influenza, that period of illness being
passed in an English hospital on the border between Belgium and France.
He had barely been discharged when he had the mumps and another
hospital experience, and after recovering was put with the 36th Division
and returned home with that command, reaching New York June 6, 1919.

The third child of Mr. Langford is Gladys Langford, born December
15, 1898. She was educated at Redlands, and is the wife of H. L.
Covington, an orange grower there. Mr. Langford has given his two
sons a chance to start in life, providing each with a good ten acre grove,
with opportunity for employment on his other holdings, and thus they
had every incentive to work out their own salvation.


Hugo Sontag. — The story of development of land and homes in San
Bernardino County introduces Hugo Sontag, one of the old timers of
this region, who has lived here nearly half a century. His post office
address is Alta Loma, but his home is a ranch three miles northeast, at
the mouth of Cucamonga Canyon.

Mr. Sontag was born in East Prussia July 24, 1840, son of Gustav
Sontag, who had fought in the German armies against Emperor Napo-
leon. Hugo was the youngest of six children. He acquired a good edu-
cation in the schools of Prussia and Silesia, and received a thorough
technical training in the University of Halle, from which he graduated
in 1862. In University he specialized in minerology, geology and sur-
veying. He was examined as preliminary to his work as a mining en-
gineer in the presence of the Burghauptman, and on passing was qualified
for government work. He then entered the service of the Imperial Gov-
ernment and was employed in sinking test wells to discover coal veins,
but these wells showed deep salt deposits instead at the depth of 950

Mr. Sontag in 1871 came to America. For a time he was in Penn-
sylvania, and as an expert geologist did some prospecting for oil, and
located what later became a well developed oil field. From there he went
on to St. Louis and entered the service of the old Pacific Railroad Com-
pany as a surveyor, and did some of the preliminary work running
lines for proposed railways to Old Indian Territory. He surveyed the
line from Fort Smith, Arkansas, to Okmulgee.

In the fall of 1875 Mr. Sontag arrived at Los Angeles, and three
months later he went to Cucamonga, where in 1876 he bought six or
eight acres from the Southern Pacific Railroad Company and thirty
acres from private parties. This land he cleared, set to vineyard and
deciduous fruits, and kept the property until it was well developed, when
he sold.

In the meantime, in 1877, Mr. Sontag took up a homestead of a hun-
dred thirty-six acres at the mouth of Cucamonga Canyon. Subsequent
purchases have enlarged this to two hundred and forty-one acres. On
it he has built his home, and has a considerable area developed as orange,
lemon and deciduous fruit groves and has also developed a water supply.
Later he bought forty acres of wild land from Charles Frankish, on
which he developed a considerable flow of water, building a reservoir
and piping the water to users below. A storm destroyed the pipe line
and practically all improvements except the reservoir. Mr. Sontag in
this and other ways has been a real pioneer in the development of this
section. He was one of the first to go into the bee industry on a com-
mercial scale, and formerly he sold honey by the carload lots. He still
has an apiary of 194 stands.

Mr. Sontag, who is a genial bachelor, has been in the Cucamonga Dis-
trict from a time when he practically had no white neighbors, the country
being occupied chiefly by Indians and a few Mexicans. His nearest rail-
way station was Cucamonga, but now Guasti, and the only resident at
the station was the railway agent, who lived in a box car. Mr. Sontag
is a republican in politics.

Herman Harris, one of San Bernardino's most prosperous mer-
chants and substantial business men, is an example of the right type
of citizen who adopts America as his home country, assimilates its
ideals, achieves success through rigid industry and integrity, and
earns the respect and generous esteem of his fellow men.


Herman Harris was born in Germany, May 2, 1871, son of Morris
and Johanna Harris. His father was a lover of freedom, and during
the Revolutionary troubles of 1848 suffered temporary exile. The
Harris ancestors originally came fom Spain, and Herman Harris' maternal
grandfather was a cloth merchant in London.

Herman Harris graduated from a German gymnasium in April,
1887, at the age of sixteen, and soon afterward left for America, reach-
ing New York in October of that year, with only two dollars and
forty cents in cash. A week later he started for San Francisco, and
had twenty cents on arriving at the Golden Gate City. The first meal
he ate was paid for by a man he met on the ferry, who also paid the
fifty cents required for his night's lodging in the old Brooklyn Hotel
on Bush Street. His first work was cleaning up the back yard of a
store, for which he received a dollar, and his total earnings the first
month amounted to twenty dollars. After getting acquainted and find-
ing employment where his efficiency would count, he increased his
salary to a hundred and fifty dollars a month.

After coming to San Bernardino Mr. Harris was employed two
years by Rudolph Auker, remained two years at Tehachapi, and made
his first business that of general merchandising. He was at Santa
Ana in the drygoods business beginning in 1893, and had a difficult
struggle during the panic which began in that year. He remained
in Santa Ana for nine years, and in April, 1905, returned to San Ber-
nardino, where two years later he took in his brothers, Philip and
Arthur, as partners in the Harris Company. This business has grown
and prospered, the quarters being enlarged several times, and it is
today one of the largest mercantile firms in the county. The Harris
Company has purchased several pieces of property, the most important
being at the corner of East and Third, known as the Ward Block,
which the company plans to improve with a modern structure.

During his residence at Santa Ana, Mr. Harris served three years
as a member of the National Guard. He was president of the Mer-

Online LibraryJohn BrownHistory of San Bernardino and Riverside counties / with selected biography of actors and witnesses of the period of growth and achievement.. (Volume 3) → online text (page 1 of 72)