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

. (page 117 of 191)
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 117 of 191)
Font size
QR-code for this ebook

to the investment of his foresight and hard labor in clearing the land of cactus and
sagebrush, and thereby producing some very valuable acreage for orange groves, is A.
F. Plegel, who came to Orange County in the early nineties. He was born in Ger-
many in 1887. the son of a worthy burgher of that country, who died there. Later,
his widow, the mother of our subject, brought her only child to .America, and arrived
in California in 1892. .At Orange, Mrs. Plegel married a second time, taking Emil
Krueger for her husband; and they improved a ranch and followed farming, in East
Orange. This first place of theirs, where they now reside, consists of twenty acres;
and when they had made a success of that, they improved several other places.

.A. F. Plegel was reared in Orange, attended the local public schools, and from
a lad learned horticulture and nurserying, and for four or five years he was employed
by George B. Warner in Santa Ana, in the work of grafting and budding. By 1907
he had sufficiently advanced that he was able to buy his place of twenty acres on
Commonwealth .Avenue, near North; like so many other places hereabouts at that
time, it was merely cactus and sagebrush, but he settled there, built a dwelling,
cleared and leveled the land, and sunk a well which is now pumped out by electrical
power, irrigating his own place and 140 acres more. His plant has a stream of 100
inches, and he has been able to raise from 2,000 to 3,000 sacks of potatoes a year.



Mr. Plegel has a thorough knowledge of horticulture and the nursery business.
from its first stages up, and at first commenced his nursery solely for himself. His
output, however, was in excess of his needs, and the reputation he acquired for skill
traveled abroad, until others insisted on his giving them the benefit of his experi-
ence. He belongs to the Mutual Orange Distributors Exchange, and is often a leader
in its activities.

At Orange, Mr. Plegel was married to Miss Paula Simon, a native of Germany,
and three children have lilessed the choice. They are Carl. Arnold and Emil. and
with their parents they attend the Anaheim Lutheran Church. In national politics
a Republican, Mr. Plegel allows no partisanship to interfere at any time with his
"boosting" of local projects meeting the approval of the intelligent portion of the

FRANK NELSON GIBBS.— The development of Anaheim and, indeed, neigh-
l)oring towns as residential and business centers is due in part to the excellent facilities
for building afforded by such concerns as the Gibbs Lumber Yard, of which Frank
Nelson Gibbs, the city trustee, is proprietor. He was born in Evanston, 111., on
March 9, 1880, and his father was Oscar L. Gibbs, well known in the business world,
and chairman of the Evanston Board of Trade. He had married Miss Lillian N.
Goodenow, a lady of attractive personality, who survives him. There were five chil-
dren in the family, and Frank is the oldest now living.

His schooling began in Arizona, but when his father died and the family moved
to California, he attended the schools of Los Angeles. In 1893 he began work in
a planing mill, and then, still in that city, he went into the dry goods business.
Afterward, he took up the handling of lumber, and in 1911 came to Anaheim, where
he built his lumber yard. Soon afterward, he opened a yard at Fullerton and one
at Placentia. He employs five men, and they are kept busy serving an ever-increasing
number of patrons. The fact that Mr. Gibbs is. on the one hand, so well posted
in the lumber trade, and that, on the other, he is intensely interested in the growth
and expansion of Orange County, and has abundant faith in its future, and is always
willing to cooperate in the advancement of the region, operate to his rendering
the greatest service possible to his townsmen and business estiablishments and
movements making for progress here. His election, in 1918, to the city council for
a term of four years is a testimonial evidencing the confidence of those living near
and dealing with him. In national politics a Republican, he is at all times above
petty partisanship.

On September 4. 1906. at Los Angeles, Cal.. Mr. Gibbs married Miss Elsie
L. Goodhue, a native of Vermont, and the daughter of W. T. and Ellen E. Goodhue,
and they have had three children — Oscar L., Ellen E. and Caroline A. The family
attend the Presbyterian Church, of which Mr. Gibbs is an elder, and where as superin-
tendent of the Bible School, he is deeply interested in Sunday school work. He be-
longs to the Masons, Lodge, Chapter and Council, and the Mother Colony Club.

HENRY MARQUART. — .Among the Wisconsin boys who are coming rapidly to
the front in Orange County, Cal., is numbered Henry Marquart, a successful citrus
grower and the owner of twenty-five acres in two places in Olive precinct. He was
born at Lomira, Dodge County, Wis., of German and French lineage. His grand-
father, Peter, was a tailor in the old country and continued the occupation after
coming to America. The father, Ferdinand Marquart, was born in Westphalia. Ger-
many, and was seven years old when he accompanied his parents to the New World,
where they located in Dodge County, Wis. Ferdinand grew to manhood, was a
farmer, and married Miss Mary Schultz, and they became the parents of eight chil-
dren, five of whom grew to maturity — three boys and two girls.

Henry is the oldest son in the Marquart family, and was reared on a southern
Wisconsin farm. He passed the teacher's examination and taught school in his
home county in Wisconsin, putting in his time between terms working on his father's
farm, until coming to California in May, 1906. For nine months he worked in vari-
ous places, familiarizing himself with orchard work, all the while looking for a good
place to locate and buy a ranch. He saw the fifteen-acre ranch that he now owns
and resolved to buy it. Five acres of the ranch were planted to Navel oranges, which
he has budded over to Valencias. The other trees were at that time affected with
the San Jose scale, and it took some time to get them back into bearing. The five
acres of \'a!encias are in good bearing, and the remainder of the place is planted
to lemons, walnuts and Valencia oranges. In 1919 Mr. Marquart bought a ten-acre
Valencia grove about half a mile from his fifteen-acre home place. It is now five
years old and is just coming into bearing. His place is in first-class shape, well
kept and a model in every way.


His marriage occurred in 1917 and united him with Miss LilHe Schroeder, daugh-
ter of Fred Schroeder of Santa Ana. and they have a son named Weslej' Martin.
Mr. Marquart is a young man of excellent educational attainments, and is giving his
best efforts to the citrus and v^falnut industries. He is not afraid of work and
knows how to work to the best advantage. He has built a beautiful and commodious
country residence upon his iifteen-acre ranch, where he resides with his wife and
child. The residence is located on the north side of Taft Avenue, west of Tustin
Street, in the very heart of the citrus belt of Orange County. Mr. Marquart is an
indefatigable worker and possesses a streak of dry humor. He is well liked, and
his quickness of perception enables him to see and to grasp an opportunity at the
opportune moment. He is a member of the Santiago Orange Association and of
the Evangelical Church of Santa Ana. In national politics he is a Republican.

PHILIP KOZINA. — A worthy representative of the foreign-born American who
is thoroughly Americanized, assimilates American ideas and associates with American
citizens is Philip Kozina. His fine twenty-acre ranch on Santiago Boulevard in Villa
Park Precinct is planted to sixteen acres of Valencias, three acres of Navel orange
trees and one acre of lemon trees. He has lived on the property for the past seven-
teen years, has prospered, and is satisfied with his environment amidst the orange
trees and roses.

A Czecho-Slovak. Mr. Kozina was born in Pilsen, Bohemia. February IS. 1855.
the son of John and Annie (Suckop) Kozina. who were married in Bohemia and
were the parents of four sons. By a singular coincidence. Philip Kozina is also the
father of four children, all boys. Mr. Kozina received a good education in the local
schools, after which he learned the wagonmaker's trade. From the age of twenty
to twenty-three he served in the Austrian army as a corporal in the Fourth Heavy
Artillery, after which he followed the carpenter's trade until he came to America in
1883, and settled at Portage City. Wis., where his uncle and aunt were residing at
that time, and here he embraced the first opportunity to become a naturalized Ameri-
can citizen. He worked at the carpenter's trade five years in Portage City, then went
to Green Bay, Kewanee County, Wis., where he met and married Miss Katie Knlhanek,
also born in Bohemia, who came when two years old with her parents to \\'isconsin.
The four sons resulting from their union are: Jacob, a stock raiser at Philipsburg,
Mont.; Henry, a rancher in Olive precinct, who married Mrs. .\ntonia Blazac. and
is the father of two children; Joe, who is on the Orpheum and Pantages vaudeville
circuits, entertaining as a song and banjo artist, and traveling all over the Union, and
Albert, who is at home, and who was in the aviation service from which he was
honorably discharged.

.After his marriage Mr. Kozina continued the vocation of carpentering at Ash-
land, Wis., and afterwards went to Stanleysville, Kewanee County, Wis., and took
charge of the farm of his father-in-law, who was getting along in years. He operated
the farm for fifteen years, then sold out and came to California in 1904, first locating
at Tustin. Becoming acquainted at Villa Park, he purchased and located on his
twenty-acre ranch, which he has improved. His father-in-law. Mr. Matthis Kulhanek,
who has attained the advanced age of eighty-four, makes his liome with Mr. Kozina.
On July 4, 1920, Mr. Kozina was bereaved of liis faithful wife, who was mourned by
the family and friends. Mr. Kozina is a member of the Central Lemon Growers
Association, and in politics affiliates with the Democratic party. Though reared in the
Catholic faith, the family attend the Community Congregational Church at \'illa Park.
They are gifted musically and the children are favorities in social circles.

DAVID MITCHELL.— Of Scotch birth and lineage, David Mitchell was born in
County of Fyfe, Scotland on January 4, 1860, the son of David and Elizabeth Mitchell,
natives of that country, who lived and died in the land of their nativity. Of their
family of five children David is the only one living in California. He resides south of
Buena Park on his forty-acre ranch, which is devoted to general farming, including the
raising of chili peppers and tomatoes and has the best of facilities for realizing the
greatest returns from a minimum amount of labor. There are two wells for irrigation
upon the place, one with a depth of 500 feet, and the other 250 feet.

When he was twenty-five years of age. Mr. Mitchell left his native land and
went to Canada where he worked in the stone quarries for about four years, then he
made a visit back to his home and spent the winter. He then came to the ''States"
and located in Cleveland, Ohio, where he was in the employ of the Cleveland Stone
Company for two years. Leaving there he next went to Iowa and worked for a St.
Louis firm as a quarryman until he migrated to Flagstaff, Ariz., to accept the position
of superintendent of the Arizona Sand Stone Company's quarries. This company was
made up of Orange County, Cal., men and they had met Mr. Mitchell through a recom-


mendation from his former company in Cleveland. This company employed as many
as eighty men in their quarries and they got out the stone that was used in the con-
struction of the Orange County court house, the Los Angeles County court house and
the city hall of that city. The last big job that Mr. Mitchell filled was the stone for
the present postoffice building in Los Angeles. The stone for the Spreckcls mansion
in San Francisco, also came from this company, in fact they shipped stone all over the
country where high class material was required.

Mr. Mitchell became interested in Orange Country ranch land through his visits
to the members of the company by whom he was employed and he bought forty acres,
in 1893, south of Buena Park and located his family on it and began developing the
tract. He made frequent visits to his family and in 1910 left the employ of the company
and located permanently on his ranch and began development on a sound basis and
has made of his place a valuable ranch and a good producer. He has also taken a live
interest in the affairs of the county and can be counted on to help with all movements
for the betterment of conditions in general and has made a host of friends who appre-
ciate his true worth.

His marriage with Miss Mary \'angendern in 1890, daughter of John Vangendern,
resulted in the birth of nine children: David, Ira, John, William, Elizabeth, Jennie,
Cornelius, Edna and George, all single and educated in the schools of Orange County.
David and Ira were in the U. S. service during the recent World War. David was
in constructive work continually during his two years' ser\ice with the Twentieth
Corps of Engineers in France. Ira served in the Engineers' Corps of the spruce squad-
ron at Washington.

J. B. HEARD. — An experienced, competent man in the truck-hauling business,
who is kept busy transporting merchandise to and from the oil fields, is J. B. Heard,
who was born in Ava, Douglas County, Mo., in 1870, the son of John Heard, a native
of Tennessee. He was reared in that state, and when twenty-one, removed to Missouri.
He campaigned with the Union Army through the Civil War, as a member of a Mis-
souri regiment, and later followed farming until his death. Mrs. Heard was Rachel
Mcintosh before her marriage, and she, too, was a native of Douglas County. There
were eight children in the family, and our subject was the fourth eldest in the order
of birth. Brought up on a Missouri farm, he attended the public schools of Doug-
las County, after which he learned the carpenter's and the blacksmith's trade. Then he
followed farming on his own account in Douglas County, learning a good deal that
was worth while from the methods of the Eastern agriculturist. Not until 1915 did he
come to California; and then he settled for a while at Taft.

He did some blacksmith work for the Associated Oil Company, and then he en-
tered the employ of the Head Drilling Company as tool dresser, continuing with them
for thirteen months. Returning to Missouri, he brought out his family to stay; and then
he reentered the employ of the Head Drilling Company. After that he was with the
St. Helen Oil Company at Taft.

On February 14, 1919, Mr. Heard located at Orange and bought three acres of
land. He remained a tool dresser on the Richfield-Yorba lease until May 10, and then
he entered upon his latest enterprise, that of hauling for the oil companies. He belongs
to the Oil Workers' Union, and is already well-posted on conditions in the oil fields.

While in Missouri. Mr. Heard was married to Miss Artie Goforth, a native of that
state, and a member of the Baptist Church, an accomplished woman capable of assisting
her husband in many ways. They have had eight children. Virgil and Clay are in the
oil fields; Gracie is Mrs. Rhodes of Placentia; Jewel is also an oil developer; and
there are Ira, Lester, Floyd and Burrell. Mr. and Mrs. Heard are Republicans.

WASHINGTON I. CARVER.— Spending the retired years of a profitable life
amidst the pleasant surroundings of his orange grove, Washington I. Carver, despite
his more than four score years, is alert, progressive and up-to-date in his political
views, keeping abreast with the times and holding marked views on all the questions
of the day.

His parents, Donald and Amanda (Skidmore) Carver, were pioneer settlers of
Auburn, Cayuga County, N. Y., coming there when this was considered by New
Englanders as an outpost of civilization, the father engaging in the grocery and meat
business there. Washington I. Carver was born here on January 18, 1839. the youngest
of a family of five children, and when he was four years old the family removed to
Wisconsin, settling at Delavan, where they remained until 1850. Going to Reeds-
burg, in Sauk County, Wis., the father purchased a prairie and timberland farm, and
this was the family home until 1885.

When the Civil War broke out Washington I. Carver offered his services in the
defense of the I'nion .-\pril 13. 1861, and enlisted in Company B. Fifth Wisconsin


Infantry, and was mustered in for three years, taking part in the campaigns of Gen-
erals McClellan, Burnside, Hooker, Meade and Grant, and passing through many
hard experiences in those crucial days. He was mustered out July 28, 1864, as ser-
geant. In October, 1864, he was married to Miss Emily Frances Mtdbery, the
daughter of Hiram and Nancy Medbery, the father being prominent in the public
life of Mrs. Carver's native state. New York. After his marriage Mr. Carver farmed
in Sauk County until 1884, when he removed to Dakota territory, took up a quarter
section of land near Gettysburg. Potter County, and later took up an additional tract
of 160 acres under the timber claim act. He remained on this land until he had
proved up on both claims, and then disposed of them and migrated to California.

Coming to Anaheim in 1897, Mr. Carver established a photographic business
there, his wife being engaged in the millinery business, continuing in this line until
1905, when he purchased a tract of twenty-two and a half acres at North and West
streets, Anaheim, paying only $1,000 for the whole tract, and this has since been the
family home. Some time ago he divided his property, deeding one-third to his son-
in-law, W. P. Quarton, of Anaheim, and one-third to L. C. Blake of Anaheim,
another son-in-law, retaining a third of the acreage for himself. Since this division
Mr. Carver has sold another five acres, so that he now has two and a half acres in
the home site. This is set out to Valencia oranges and is a valuable piece of property

Nine children were born to Mr. and Mrs. Carver, three of whom, Irving,
Caroline and Emery, are deceased. Those living are: Marian C, who is the wife
of L. C. Blake of Anaheim; they are the parents of a daughter, now Mrs. Walter
J. Jewell, a sketch of whom appears elsewhere in this work, and she is the mother
of two children — Richard and Mary; another daughter, Mrs. Helen Perry has one son,
Raymond; Walter resides in Minnesota; Katherine is the wife of W. P. Quarton of
Anaheim and is the mother of three children — Dale. Irving and Dorothy Fern; Marvin
resides at home; Mrs. Alice Booth has one son, Eugene, and assists her mother in
presiding over the home.

Always a great thinker and a man of progressive ideas, Mr. Carver's prime
interest has ever been for the masses rather than the classes, and he has for some
years been a Socialist, as he was an early abolitionist. A man of highest integrity, he
can look back on a busy life that has been well spent, and filled with many deeds of
kindness for his fellowmen.

FRANK W. 'WALTON.— A pioneer citizen of the Los Alamitos section of Orange
County and a man who is devoting his time and talents to the study of Nature's proc-
esses in propagating, experimenting with buds and grafts and in cross pollenization
to bring out new varieties of fruits, is Frank W. Walton, whose results have been
phenomenal in the field of his chosen endeavor.

A native of Hancock County. 111., Frank W. was born on May 22, 1869, the son
of John and Mary (Southwick) Walton, natives of Kentucky and Massachusetts, re-
spectively, but long residents of Illinois. In 1884 the family removed to Kansas and
there improved a farm, but not feeling satisfied with the conditions found in that
state the parents returned to Illinois in 1892. There the father passed to his reward
in 1917, at the age of eighty-five, and Mrs. Walton died there in 1919, having attained
to the age of seventy-five. They were the parents of seven children, six of them still
living, and two of these are in California. Frank W. is a distant relative to the late
,\braham Lincoln, as his grandmother Walton was a second cousin to the father of
the martyred president and she came from Kentucky to Sangamon County, 111., at the
same time Mr. Lincoln settled there.

Frank W. Walton attended school in Illinois and Kansas and in his youth became
a woodworker, doing fine cabinet work and also made musical instruments, such as
violins, guitars and banjos. After his parents went back to Illinois he remained in
Kansas, operating a fruit farm that belonged to his mother. During this time he made
several trips to California, the first one in 1888. just after the big boom. He spent
some time at Santa Rosa, then returned to Kansas and continued farming until 1893.
when he moved to Portland, Ore. Three years later he came down to Los Alamitos.
Orange County and secured employment with the Los Alamitos Sugar Companv as ;;
pattern maker, continuing with them for twenty years. During all the years that he
was engaged in other lines of work he kept closely in touch with Nature, for even as a
mere youth he was much interested in plant and tree life. He Ijegan making experi-
ments in cross pollenization and he now sees the results of his many years of study,
and some of those who know his work best consider that he has even surpassed the
world-renowned wizard, Luther Burbank, in some of the varieties he has propa.gated.
He has developed a quince, a cross between an apple and a quince, w-hich can be eaten,
cooked or treated as an ordinary apple; his varieties of pears have been so develon - '
that they can be eaten every month in the year without having been placed in cold


storage; he has several species of grapes, propagated by himself, that surpass tlie
standard varieties in point of excellence of flavor and they can be grown without fumiga-
tion or spraying: the "Gold Dollar" apple, his specialty, will be put on the market ni
1921; numerous varieties of peaches, pomegranates, figs and persimmons are all of
superior quality. Mr. Walton is enthusiastic over the climate and soil conditions of this
section and declares that nowhere in the state is better to be found raising pears.

His home place at Los Alamitos is systematically and artistically arranged with
fruit of his own propagation, and is the show place of the section, where the visitor is
well repaid for the time spent with the proprietor, who is deeply in love with his work.
Not having room enough on his home place to e.xpand his work, Mr. Walton has his
nursery on the ranch owned by C. D. Clarke, near Santa Fe Springs, in Los Angeles.
County, where visitors are always made sure of a warm welcome.

By Mr. Walton's marriage in 1891. with Miss Josephine Watson, daughter of
John and Martha Watson, two children were born, a son and daughter, the latter dying
in childhood. The son, Vern H. Walton, is a mechanic in the employ of the Lord
Motor Company in Los Angeles. He married Miss Dorris Terril. a native of Arkansas,
while living in the state of Washington. Frank W. Walton is deeply interested in the
welfare of the people of Orange County and is ever ready and willing to support all
movements for the public good. Devoted to his work, yet he never shirks the civic
duties of a loyal American citizen.

ALBERT A. LEE. — .Among the men who have proved citizens of worth and
public spirit and have rendered valuable service to Villa Park Precinct is Albert .A.
Lee. who traces his lineage to old Virginia, and whose family were prominent in that
state among the F. F. V.'s. Mr. Lee was born near Des Moines, Iowa, October 24,
1862. He is the son of David L. Lee, and his grandfather, David R. Lee, was a second
cousin of the famous General Robert E. Lee.

Albert A. Lee was seven years old when he accompanied his parents in their
removal from Iowa to Kansas, the family arriving at Baxter Springs, Kans., in
1870. He was educated in the common schools of Kansas, and taught three terms of
school, after which he followed carpentering and bridge building. Coming to Orange
County November 9, 1887. Mr. Lee first engaged in the restaurant business at Santa
.Ana. .■\fterwards he rented land for years, then purchased four acres, which he dis-

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 117 of 191)