Samuel Armor.

History of Orange County, California : with biographical sketches of the leading men and women of the county who have been identified with its earliest growth and development from the early days to the present online

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Online LibrarySamuel ArmorHistory of Orange County, California : with biographical sketches of the leading men and women of the county who have been identified with its earliest growth and development from the early days to the present → online text (page 115 of 191)
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greenhouse for many years. They became the parents of four children, all born in
Denver: Mary, was married to James Johnson in May. 1901. in Los .\ngeles; they went
to Needles, where he died on February 23, 1916, and there his widow still lives; .\nna,
died on March 31, 1894: George K., was born on February 21. 1881. and died May 30,
1890; and Edward D., of this review, who was born on May 14, 1880. The father died
on April 1, 1906, and the mother lived about a year, passing away in 1907, both highly
esteemed by all who knew them.

After the death of the father, E. D., Jr., began to make further improvements
on the property by setting out Valencia oranges, having to go to San Dimas for his
stock because there was none nearer. His were the first trees to be set out on the
Garden Grove highway; soon others followed and today this section has become the
center of the Valencia orange district of the county. He is a member of the Orange
Growers Association at Anaheim. This grove has proven to be one of the best of
producers and his ranch is recognized as one of the show places in this locality. He
replaced the original house with a modern structure in 1919 and now enjoys all the
conveniences of city life.

Having spent nearly all his life in Orange County, where he attended the grammar
and high schools of Anaheim, it is but natural that he should take a just pride in the
advancement of the locality where he has lived for so many years and he has given his
support to all movements for the betterment of social and moral conditions that have
been brought to his notice. On December 4. 1914, in Anaheim, he was united in mar-
riage with Miss Pauline Domke. a native of Iowa and the daughter of August Domke.
Their union has been blessed by the birth of a daughter, Anita. Mr. Marion is a
member of .\naheim Lodge No. 134S, B. P. O. Elks, also of the Masons and the
KnigTits of Pythias. In politics he is a Republican and the family belong to the Pres-
byterian Church.

ANAHEIM FEED AND FUEL COMPANY.— Among the old established busi-
ness lirms at .\naheim is that of the .\naheim Feed and Fuel Company, located at
242 West Center Street. The business was established by R. W. McClellan. and
was conducted under his name until 1917, when W'. D. Grafton became interested in the
business and the firm name was changed to The .\naheim Feed and Fuel Company.
September 29, 1919, A. V. \'ail bought Mr. McClellan's interest in the business and
became a partner of i\Ir. Grafton. The business, established a number of years ago.
has gradually grown to its present dimensions, and is the largest in its line in Orange
County. The new home of the firm fronts on Center and Oak streets, and they have
the only public weighing scales in the town. They do a large business in orchard
supplies, are agents for the Pacific Guano Fertilizer Company, and also deal extensively
in seeds and poultry supplies. Both members of the firm have been successful orange
growers and are widely known, and have been actively connected with the growth of
Orange County for many years.

William D. Grafton, the son of Dr. and Mrs. W. H. Grafton of Cambridge. Iowa,
was born in Story County, Iowa, July 6, 1875, He completed his education at the
Cambridge. Iowa, high school, and took a course in business college at Des Moines,
Iowa. He was afterward assistant department manager for the Harris Emery Com-
pany, the largest department store in Des Moines. He was with the .\naconda Copper
Mining Company, at .Anaconda and Bonner. Mont., for sixteen years, and from there
came to Los .Angeles. Cal.. and engaged in the hay and grain business. Later he came
to Orange County and became an orange grower in the Orange district, and in 1^19
became a partner in the .Anaheim Feed and Fuel Company. His marriage with Miss
Lois Newport has been blessed by the birth of three children, namely, William W..
Helen and Nelly Kathryn. Fraternally he affiliates with the Independent Order of Odd
Fellows and is a member of the encaTupment.


The junior member of the firm. Albert V. \'ail. is a native of Muscatine, Iowa,
where he was born April 30, 1882. His father, now deceased, was a native of New-
York state. His mother, who survives her husband, was in maidenhood Bertha Mouche.
She is of French parentage and was born in Austria. The father came to California
first in 1886, then he returned to the East and in 1888 brought his family to California
with him. arriving at Anaheim. March 3, of that year. For many years he was engaged
in ranching, raising grain and vegetables in the Fullerton district. In politics he was
a Democrat, and was active and very prominent in the politics of his party. He was
a member of the Orange County Democratic Central Committee.

Albert V. attended the public schools of Fullerton. and supplemented this with a
course at the Santa Ana Business College. He followed the occupation of farming
and was engaged in .the transfer business at Fullerton. and was also an orange grower
in the Fullerton district. He now owns two orange and lemon groves on which oil
is being developed. He was the founder of the El Camino Water Company, one of the
best irrigation systems in the county, and September 29. 1919. became a member of the
firm of The Anaheim Feed and Fuel Company. His marriage with Miss Freda Backs,
a native of Anaheim, resulted in the birth of two children, Frederick and Albertha. Mr.
Vail was formerly a member of the Santa Ana Lodge of Elks, and when the Anaheim-
Fullerton lodge of the order w-as instituted he became a charter member of it, and
was the first tyler of the lodge.

PERRY MILLER. — To develop a productive and profitable ranch from desert
land, construct commodious and substantial buildings and in every way to equip the
place for successful general farming^ — to accomplish all this in a few years bespeaks an
enterprising and experienced rancher. This is an epitome of Perry Miller's thirteen
years of ranching in Orange County. He was born on February 5, 1857. in Sandusky
County, Ohio, a son of Jacob and Mary Miller, who were both natives of Pennsylvania.
Mr. .and Mrs. Miller were the parents of five children. Perry being the only one
residing in California. When he was one year old his parents moved to Michigan and
in that state he received his early education, and there his parents died before he was
nine years of age.

In 1889 Mr. Miller migrated to Fremont County, low-a. where he followed general
farming until 1906, when he came to Southern California and in 1907. located in Orange
County, Cal. A year previous he had purchased fifty-six acres of unimproved land
located on what is now West Orangethorpe Avenue, at the Los Angeles County line.
With his characteristic energy and progressive spirit he at once began to improve and
develop the land until today he possesses a splendid homestead as the fruit of his
industry and enterprise.

In Branch County, Mich., in 1883. Mr. Miller was united in marriage with Miss
Belle Baker, a native of Michigan, and the daughter of John and Parthenia (Dutcher)
Baker, natives of Pennsylvania and Ohio, respectively. One son. C. L., was born to
them; he is married to Lucy Ball of Downey. Cal., and -two children have blessed their
union — Dorothy and Perry. In religious matters Mr. Miller is a Spiritualist and in
politics he is an Independent, giving his voice and vote to the men and measures
he conscientiously believes the best for the welfare of the community and nation.

HARVEY F. HARTMAN.— One of the best posted men in his special line of
endeavor, and a recognized authority on the cultivation and propagation of chili peppers
is Harvey F. Hartman. of Buena Park district. Orange County. He devotes one-half
of his thirty-acre ranch to raising the popular Mexican. Anaheim and Pimento chili
peppers, so much used, in both their green and ripe state, in canning, pickles and
cookery. Mr. Hartman was born in Toledo, Ohio, on December 3, 1881, a son of
Frederick C. and Anna Hartman; the father being a native of Germany, the mother of
the Buckeye State. Mrs. Hartman passed away in 1882, wdien Harvey was but nine
months old. F. C. Hartman brought his family to California in 1894; he followed the
trade of a cabinet maker but in later 3'ears took up horticulture. He passed to his
eternal reward in 1911. in Pasadena.

Harvey F. Hartman received his early education in the public schools of Ohio
and after removing to California attended the splendid schools nf Pasadena. Later
his education was supplemented by a special course in a correspondence school, after
which he pursued a special study of the science of horticulture and seed selection, in
which he has attained signal success and made for himself a prominent place in the
horticultural and agricultural circles of his community. In addition to his specializing
in chili peppers Mr. Hartman devotes half of his ranch to general farming; he thor-
oughly understands the cultivation and peculiarities of the soil in this vicinit>- and
is an authority on the most suitable crops to be propagated. He has resided on his
ranch near Buena Park since 1909 and has greatly improved the place.



On May 1, 1906. Harvey F. Hartman was united in marriage with Miss Rose
Bastady, daughter of Mr. and Mrs. Imanuel Bastady and this happy union has been
blessed with four children: Rosalie Marie, Helen Esther, Ida Mae and Frank Christian.
Mrs. Hartman is a native of Basel, Switzerland. The family are members of the Con-
gregational Church of Buena Park. During his residence in Orange County, Mr.
Hartman has contributed his share to the substantial development of agriculture and
horticulturq in the county and is an honored member of the Farm Bureau of Buena
Park. Having been interested in floriculture while living in Pasadena, he still retains
his love for the beautiful by his membership in the Floricultural Society of that city.
Believing there is a great future for the dahlia, he is lieginning the cultivation of special
varieties on a small scale on his ranch.

FRANK R. LAGOURGUE.— A successful rancher and an influential member of
the Anaheim Citrus Union, Frank R. Lagourgue has more than one interesting story
to tell of the past as it affected either himself or his forebears. He was born in Sac City,
Sac County, Iowa, the son of William V. and Elizabeth (Austin) Lagourgue. His
father was born in Jamaica, West Indies, where the grandfather William Lagourgue,
who was a native of France, was a large sugar planter. In time he disposed of his
holdings in Jamaica and located in Cleveland, Ohio, where he was a lumberman until
his death. William V. Lagourgue as a young man sailed on the Great Lakes, then
located in Iowa and was one of the first one-half dozen settlers of Sac County. Here
Frank received his early schooling at Sac City, and when sixteen years old moved to
Gage County, Nebr. His father purchased school land near Beatrice and also some
land from the Otoe Indians, and he had a large farm where he raised wheat and corn.
Frank continued his studies for a while after coming to Nebraska, and more and
more caught the spirit of the W'est which was to lead him on to his greater accom-
plishment on the shore of the Pacific.

On November 30, 1882, Frank R. Lagourgue was married to Miss Mary Latta, a
native of Minnesota, and a member of a family that moved to Indiana and then to
Nebraska, in 1880. Her parents Robt. S. and Mary Latta, natives of Illinois and Ohio,
respectively, came of splendid old Eastern stock, her father being a minister in the
Methodist Episcopal Church, very highly esteemed for his earnestness and devotion to
his calling. After his marriage Mr. Lagourgue engaged in the drug business in Odell.
Nebr., and later in Imperial. Chase County, Nebr. In the fall of 1901 he drove overland
with a team and wagon to Stillwater, Okla., and there lived for a winter. On April 1.
1902, he came to California and settled at Anaheim, and here purchased a home on
East Center Street, in Avhich he lived for a few years. In 1908, he bought ten acres
on Placentia Avenue, cleared the land, developed water and set out Valencia oranges.
In 1914, however, he sold out and purchased a ranch on Liberty Lane, north of Ana-
heim, and since then he has made that farm his home ranch, dispensing there to all
who come an acceptable hospitality. All these years he has engaged in contracting and
painting in Anaheim and vicinity, his work being most excellent and highly appre-
ciated. Five children were granted Mr. and Mrs. Lagourgue: Carl R. lives in Wasco,
Cal.: Alta is a bank clerk of Glendale, Ariz.; Robert V. resides in Pomona; Bernice
has become Mrs. E. L. Hartwell of Long Beach; while Frank died at the age of nine
years. Mrs. Lagourgue is a member of the Free Methodist Church in Garden Grove.
Mr. Lagourgue is vice-president of the Northeast Water Company, from which he
irrigates his ranch. A member of the Masonic fraternity he is affiliated with Anaheim
Lodge, F. & A. M.

Mr. Lagourgue's father recalls with interest the fact that in early days the very
Indians that massacred the settlers of New Ulm, Minn., used his farm in Iowa as their
camping ground. He treated the Redmen kindly, and they in turn never molested him
or his family. .\nd when one of his liorses followed the Indians' horses as they took
their leave, an Indian, discovering the wandering beast, brought it back and tied it in
his father's yard.

EDWARD CHAFFEE.— The son of honored pioneers of Orange County, Edward
Cliaffee, of Garden Grove, is a Californian in all but birth, having been a resident of
tlie state since he was five years old. He was born on the Chaffee farm near Elgin.
111., March 16, 1876, the son of Albert J. and Susan (Ambrose) Chaffee, who are men-
tioned elsewhere in this volume. In 1881 the family removed to California, settling
at Garden Grove, then Los Angeles County. Here the lad grew up, attending the public
.schools at Garden Grove, and later taking a two years' course at the State Normal
School at Los .\ngeles. In the meantime he was brought up to do hard work on his
father's grain and dairy farm, learning thoroughly how to master all the problems that
go with making a success in agriculture. When he reached manhood he ijegan farm
iiig on liis own account, and he is now the owner of a profitaljle ranch of forty-five


acres, half a mile northeast of Garden Grove. In addition he farms eighty-five acres
of rented land in the vicinity. Always progressive in his ideas, Mr.-Chafifee has kept
pace with the changes brought about by the successive steps in the progress of the
country. At one time he was interested in the production of celery, but when other
crops became more profitable he at once turned his attention to them and has made
a marked success in raising sugar beets, lima beans and alfalfa. He has erected a
comfortable country residence on his ranch, and also improved the place .with barns
and other buildings. Some time ago he set out four acres of apricots and they are
now bearing profitably. For the past six seasons he has operated a bean thresher in
partnership with R. A. Oldfield.

Mr. Chaflfee's marriage, which occurred on July 10, 1902, united him with Miss
Carrie S. Pullen, who was reared at Areola, 111., and came to California in 1896. Six
children, all boys, have been born to them: Clare S., Harold E., Milton A., Robert A.,
Walter B., and John D. The family are members of the Methodist Episcopal Church
at Garden Grove. Mr. Chafifee takes an active interest in the development of Garden
Grove, particularly in furthering the interests of the Garden Grove Lima Bean Grow-
ers Association, which he helped organize, and of which he is the secretary. He is also
a member of the Garden Grove Farm Bureau and Chamber of Commerce, and for six
years was secretary for the Orange County Farmers Mutual Fire Insurance Company.
Mrs. Chaffee justly shares her husband's popularity in the community and the whole
family is highly esteemed.

FRED DORN. — A liberal-minded, kind-hearted, sterling fellow, who has proven
both a builder up and an upbuilder of Anaheim, is Fred Dorn, who was born in Alsace-
Lorraine, on March 31, 1867, the son of George Dorn, a native of that country and a
stonemason, and also a member of an old family. He married Caroline Smith, a model
woman of her land and generation, and one who influenced most helpfully the subject
of our sketch. Both parents are now deceased.

Fred, the only one in the United States, to which country he came when he was
fifteen, in 1882, attended the public schools of his locality, where he received a good
p-rounding in the essentials of education. When he reached Ford County, 111., he
began to work on a farm, and continued his schooling in the winter time. Two
years later, he removed to Adams County, Nebr., where he continued to work as a
farm hand. He there rented land, raised grain and stock, got more and more familiar
with American conditions, and both in his successes and failures prepared himself for
the next great step in his career, his removal to the Pacific Coast.

This was effected in 1890, when he removed to California and settled for a while
at Fillmore, in Ventura County where he secured ten acres and went in for general
farming. At the end of seven years, however, he sold out and moved south to Los
Angeles, where he was in the employ of the Santa Fe Railroad Company. He next
engaged as a contractor in cement construction, and for another seven years followed
that line of activity.

In 1907 he bought his present place of eighteen acres at Anaheim — raw land,
where he had to grub out the eucalyptus and the apricot trees from three or more
acres. He set out a vineyard, raised stock, had orange trees which he budded to
excellent Valencias, so that with the exception of an acre and a half of lemons, he has
devoted much of his land to oranges of that type. He belongs to the Mutual Orange
Distributors Association, where his experience carries weight.

JOHN C. ELBINGER. — A progressive rancher, who owns twenty well-improved
acres, devoted to oranges and walnuts, in the West Anaheim district of Orange County,
is John C. Elbinger, a native of Germany, where he first saw the light of day on
August 24, 1849. His parents, George and Mary Elbinger, were also natives of Germany
and their family consisted of two children, John C. and Elizabeth.

When twenty-six years of age. John C. Elbinger immigrated to the Lhiited States
so he could enjoy a greater degree of liberty in the pursuit of life and happiness and
where so many great opportunities were offered to enterprising and ambitious young
men — opportunities such as they could never hope to enjoy in their native land. After
his arrival in this country Mr. Elbinger resided for a short time in Kankakee County,
111., but in March. 1877, migrated to Nebraska, farmed there four years in Saunders
County and in 1881 he went to South Dakota where he took up 320 acres of land and
engaged in general farming and stockraising. The land was located in territory for-
merly occupied by Indians. He improved the land, developed the place into a good
paying farm and remained in South Dakota for twenty years. Mr. Elbinger's superior
business ability and expert knowledge of land values were recognized by his fellow-
citizens in his election to the important position of county assessor of Douglas County,
a post he filled with credit to himself and great satisfaction to the tax-paying public
tor the period of fifteen years.

'i^ S^aJ> J^^-tl^ £^^^^^(J^cc/


During the year 1901, Joliii C. Elbinger moved to the Pacific Coast, coming
directly to Riverside County, Cal., where he purchased ten acres, slightly improved,
and devoted the ranch exclusively to oranges. Ten acres soon became too small tor
such an ambitious and progressive man as Mr. Elbinger. he and removed to
Orange County where he purchased his present ranch in 1908. The land was partly
improved when he took possession, but he began more extensive improvements, setting
out walnut and orange trees and in due time developed his place into a most profitable
ranch where he has a comfortable house and most pleasant surroundings. His career
it but another illustration of what thrift, frugality and well-directed effort, coupled with
the judicious management of one's financial affairs, can accomplish.

In .1877 Mr. Elbinger was united in marriage with Miss Marguerite England, this
happy union being blessed with a son, George Elljinger, who married Miss Catherine
Haas, and they a^e the parents of twin girls, Elizabeth and Agnes. In 1910 Mr.
Elbinger was bereft of his loving and faithful helpmate. During his residence in
Orange County he has filled minor offices of trust and responsibility and always mani-
fested a deep concern in the development of the best interests of Orange County.

JOSEPH P. MAYHEW. — A self-made, very successful man whose public-spirit-
edness has actuated him to share with others some of his successful opportunities
and, more than once, to point the way so that his fellow-citizens might attain to the
same sort of prosperity his foresight enabled him to divine, is Joseph P. Mayhew.
who returned to Anaheim and the Orange County country, notwithstanding his good
luck further east, because he had received such a favorable impression of Southern
California when he first came here to look around. He was born at Calumet, N. V.,
on December 13. 1852, the son of Mark A. Mayhew, who was born and reared in
England, followed a seafaring life for sixteen years, and before he left Great Britain,
married Miss Sarah Young, also English by birth. After their eldest son, William A.
Mayhew, later a resident of Danville, 111., had been born, Mr. and Mrs. Mayhew
migrated from England, and in 1850 located at Calumet, N. Y., Mr. Mayhew turning
his hand to anything which would enable him to support himself and family. Three
years later, he moved west to Illinois and settled near Sheldon, in Iroquois County,
and there bought forty acres of raw land upon which he put up a log cabin. He
steadily improved his farm and also added to it, until he had 120 acres; prospering
to a happy degree, save in the death of his devoted wife, in 1866. Just forty years
later, on April 21, he closed his own career in death.

These worthy British-Americans had six sons and one daughter, and Joseph
was the second in the order of birth. He was reared near Sheldon, attended the
primitive schools of that locality and period, and assisted his father at home until his
twenty-first year. Three days before Christmas, in 1873, at Clifton, 111., he married
Miss Nancy A. Karnes, a native of Momence, 111., who was reared in Illinois, receiv-
ing most of her education in Kankakee County, III. Her father was John Karnes,
while the maiden name of her mother was Mary Reynolds. After marrying, they
rented land for three years in Iroquois County, and then purchased and developed
eighty acres of prairie land which Air. Mayhew in two short years made highly

Having rented his farm. Mr. Mayhew in February. 1879 joined the Rinehart family,
his wife's adopted parents, and removed to Nebraska, where they located in Seward
County, and there for a while again rented land. Then he purchased eighty acres,
which he improved and lived upon until the late eighties. About that time, he came
out to California and to Anaheim, and what he saw here so favorably impressed him
that he decided to remove to the Coast as soon as he could afford to do so. He
returned, however, to Nebraska, devoting his time to buying and shipping live stock
to South Omaha and Chicago; his headquarters were at Beaver Crossing. Nebr.; here
lie continued with success until 1907, when he came out to Anaheim for good.

While on a second trip to California in 1893. Mr. Mayhew had purchased forty
acres of unimproved land, and on his return he bought a number of town lots and a
ranch of fifteen acres east of .Anaheim, now rich with full-bearing Valencia oranges.
When he started in Nebraska as a young man. Mr. Mayhew had less than ten dollars
in his pocket: but by hard, honest work and care to look ahead, he built up a large
trade shipping stock and poultry, averaging as much as $13,000 worth a month. Since
his advent in Orange County, Mr. Mayhew has speculated a good deal in real estate,
and has always been phenomenally successful. Mr. and Mrs. Mayhew are members
of the First Christian Church at. Anaheim, and he is a Mason, retaining his member-

Online LibrarySamuel ArmorHistory of Orange County, California : with biographical sketches of the leading men and women of the county who have been identified with its earliest growth and development from the early days to the present → online text (page 115 of 191)