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 119 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 119 of 191)
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in the county, or for that matter, in the whole state.

WILLIAM L. DUGGAN. — A busy, successful commercial man, who has never-
theless found time to gratify his public-spirited desires and to serve his fellow-citizens
efficiently in the handling of a public trust, is William L. Duggan, the well-known
and popular insurance agent of 222 South Sycamore Street. He was born near
Macon, Ga., on April 13, 1862, the son of J. B. and Nancy Duggan. His father was
both a doctor of medicine and a farmer; so that, while William enjoyed the comforts
of a well-stocked country home, he also had the advantage of growing up in a cul-
tured circle.

He was graduated from Mercier University, at Macon, with the Bachelor of
Arts degree, and there engaged in teaching until, in 1893, he came out to California.
For three years, in the northern part of the state, he worked for the long-established
New York Life Insurance Company, and in 1896 came south to Santa Ana. Since
then he has made his home here, residing at 111 South Sycamore Street, where
he had built for himself a home as early as 1905.

He continued with the New York Life Insurance Company, and his work
has made that favorite concern even more popular with would-be policyholder^.
He has contributed in particular something to stabilize insurance conditions in the
county, and to render that form of commercial activity a far greater sociological
service than it ever originally was dreamed likely to become. In insurance circles
he is a Senior Nylic and a member of the $200,000 Club,

On April 12, 1899, Mr. Duggan was married in Santa Ana to Miss Clara Clyde,
a native of Utah, who was educated in that state, and came to visit relatives in Santa
Ana. She soon grew to be a favorite, so that when she met Mr. Duggan she was
already a popular local belle. Two daughters have brightened the Duggan home
and assisted in extending its widely-appreciated hospitality. One is now Mrs. Roscoe
G. Hewitt of Santa Ana, and the other is Miss Dorothy Duggan, a high school
student of Santa .Ana. Mr. Duggan belongs to the Masons, and is certainly not the
least popular in that representative circle.

A Democrat in matters of national politics, but never partisan when it comes
to acting upon strictly local measures or men, Mr. Duggan was president of the
board of education of Santa .Ana in the very formative period from 1911 to 1915,
and looks back with pride to the work of the trustees associated with him, who
then built the well-constructed and well-equipped Polytechnic high school there.

FERDINAND H. WESSLER,— A resident of the United States for close to a
half century, Ferdinand H. Wessler has taken a public-spirited interest in every com-
munity in which he has lived, and he has ever been glad of the decision that led him
to make this his adopted land. Born at Bresen, West Prussia, January 7, 1848, he is
the son of Henry and Paulina Wessler, who were farmers in that vicinity. Educated
in the schools of his native country and serving his allotted term of enlistment in the
army, Mr. Wessler determined to seek a land that offered more freedom and greater
opportunity, so the year 1873 saw him on his way to the United States.

For five years after his arrival he worked in a machine shop at Philadelphia,
Pa,, having started to learn the trade in Bresen, then removed to Lincoln County,
Kans., where he purchased 160 acres of railroad land, later buying another tract of
160 acres of school land near Wilson, Kans. Mr. Wessler raised cattle and grain
on his Kansas farms and liecame well-known in the agricultural life of that community,
where he continued until 1897. Coming to California that year he spent two years in
Pasadena, locating at Anaheim in 1899.

Purchasing twelve acres on the Garden Grove road west of Anaheim, Mr.
Wessler set to work to improve it, and it now is a thriving citrus orchard. Six
acres of it are in seven-year Valencia oranges, while the balance of the trees are


three years old. Mr. Wessler has been unusually successful in developing his prop-
erty, and he still does practically all the work of caring for it, having now eleven
acres. In 1919 he erected a beautiful residence on his ranch and here with his family
he resides in cornfort.

In May. 1879, at Wilson, Kans., Mr. Wessler was married to Miss Amy Babcock,
the daughter of Mr. and Mrs. Morgan Babcock. She was a native of Missouri, where
her father was extensively engaged in the cattle business, the family later living in
Illinois and Nebraska before their removal to Kansas. Four children were born
to Mr. and Mrs. Wessler: Mabel is Mrs. H. D. Meyer and resides at Pasadena; she
has five children; Grace; Verne; Erse is Mrs. Albert C. Meyer, and makes her home
in San Gabriel. Mrs. Wessler passed away in 1893 at their Kansas home. Five
years later, on July 2, 1898, while living at Pasadena, Mr. Wessler was there united
in marriage with Mrs. Lena Blach, a native of Kansas, who had been a resident of
California some time before her marriage. One son, Lloyd, has been born to them;
he is a graduate of the Anaheim high school and resides with his parents. Mr. and
Mrs. Wessler are members of the Fullerton Baptist Church.

Always taking a lively interest in civic affairs wherever he has lived, Mr. Wessler
was constable of Highland Township during his residence in Kansas, and later was
treasurer of the same township. A Republican in politics, he has always given his
loyal support to the candidates of that party. A member of the Cooperative Fruit
Association, he takes an active part in every movement that will help in the progress
of the neighborhood and county, and his sterling character and tine traits of citizen-
ship have made for him an assured place in the commuuitv'.

FRED SCHLUETER.— A prosperous farmer of the West Orange precinct, who
has two groves of such high standard and value that he very naturally feels he has
done well in America, is Fred Schlueter, who was born in North Hanover, near
Bremen, on November 28. 1858. His parents were William and Sophie Schlueter,
steady-going and highly-esteemed farmer folk, who sent tlie lad to the best schools
in their district so that, while he helped his father on the home farm, he also received
the foundation of a good education.

In 1881 he decided to leave his native land and cross, the ocean to America, and
in March he landed at Castle Garden. Pushing on west to Toledo, Ohio, he worked
for a year and a half on a farm not far from that city, and there first became Ameri-
canized. In the fall of 1882, however, he came still further west, to California, and
here worked as a farmhand on various ranches.

After a while, he purchased two ranches in West Orange, one made up of twenty
acres and the other having fourteen acres, for which he supplied a pumping plant with
a capacity of forty inches. In the former, there were twelve acres of walnuts, five
acres of apricots and three of oranges; while the latter was devoted to walnuts alone.

On July 3, 1893. Mr. Schlueter married Miss Maria Burfind, who was born in
Hanover, near Hamburg, and came to America in 1888 to stay with her brother in
Los .Angeles. She had been well educated in the schools of Hanover, and so was able
from the start to be of the greatest help to her husband. Seven children were born
to this happy couple. William F. is a Lutheran minister in Texas; Sophie and Henry
H. are at home; Carl is an agent for the Ford automobiles in Los Angeles, in which
city Eddie S. is also employed; Clara is a high school student at Orange, and Arthur
goes to the parochial school in the same city. The family attend the Lutheran Church.

Mr. Schlueter is a patriotic American, with preferences for the Republican party,
and this spirit of patriotism has also been sho^yn by his family during the recent
war, and notably by his son. Henry H. Schlueter, who enlisted in the U. S. Navy in
July. 1918, and helped to guard the great battleships.

ALBERT L. HEIM. — A highly intelligent, energetic and progressive young man
of a very representative family, who has proven himself both a good worker and a good
manager, is Albert Heim. a native son whose capital has been partly in his gifted
and equally enterprising wife, also representing one of the best of Orange County
families. She is more than an excellent housekeeper — she has always been an invalu-
al)le helpmate; so that their prosperity, a source of satisfaction to their many friends,
is the result of their own common, united efforts.

Mr. Heim was born at Orange when his parents were living at the southern end
of South Glassell Street, where they rented land. His father was Herman F. Heim. a
native of Germany, who had married there Miss Hanna Mueller, a sister of Jacob
Mueller, also well known in California; and when they first came to the United States.
they settled in the Middle West. Later,-they went- to Kansas, where they farmed; and
then, in 1885 they came on to California. For a while they rented at Orange; then,
while still renting, Herman Heim came up to Olive and bought the property now owned


by his son. Five children were born to the worthy couple. Mary has become the
wife of Herman Struck, the citrus grower living near Orange; Emma is the wife of
Andrew Meyers, the citrus and walnut grower residing on Collins Avenue not far
from Mr. and Mrs. Struck; Carl O. is a rancher living along the Anaheim Boulevard,
near Olive, where he has an orange ranch of seventeen acres; Annie is the wife of
Kred Bandick, the rancher, on North Main Street, and Albert L. is the subject of
our review.

He was born on February 11, 1886, and attended the parochial school at Orange.
He helped his father until he was married, on April 2i, 1908, to Miss Annie Borchard,
also a native of Orange, a daughter of John and -Augusta (Trettin) Borchard. who
migrated to California from Minnesota, and followed ranching here until they retired.
Her father died in Orange and her mother now makes her home with Mr. and Mrs.
A. L. Heim. Their eight children were as follows: Charles, a rancher at Orange;
Herman died when thirty years of age; Ida died in Orange at sixteen years; Robert
resides in Orange; Julius is a real estate dealer in Orange; Fred lives in Anaheim;
Anna, Mrs. A. L. Heim, and Martha were twins; the latter died when nine month.s
old. Mrs. Heim also attended the parochial school, she grew up a popular belle; so
that their wedding Ijecame one of the pleasant social events of the year.

After his marriage, Mr. Heim started for himself in the orange industry, at the
end of a year, in association with his father, buying ten acres of vacant land owned
by Gottfried Kloth. It was northwest of Orange, on the easterly side of North
Batavia Street, and when he had skilfully planted it to Valencias, he sold it in 1915.
For a couple of years thereafter he rented land; and finally, in 1917, he bought his
present place. His parents, both happily still living, reside at Orange, retired from
active ranching.

Mr. Heim has installed all the necessary cement pipe for irrigation and gets
his supply of water from the Santa Ana Valley Irrigation Company. He has also
spent several thousand dollars on remodeling his residence and making various im-
provements. He has five and a half acres in walnuts and the balance, nearly eight
acres, in Valencia oranges. He is a member of the Farm Center, and is also a stock-
holder in the Mutual Orange Distributors, which wide-awake organization has its
own packing house at Olive.

Mr. and Mrs. Heim have three children. Velma is the eldest, then comes Clara,
and the youngest is Edna. The family are members of the Lutheran Church at Olive.
Mr. Heim is a Republican, but does not allow partisanship to interfere with his
duties, either as a loyal American citizen or as a vigorous, unbiased supporter of all
that is best for Orange County and its various attractive and growing communities.

FOSTER E. WILSON, M. D.— Noteworthy among the esteemed and influential
citizens of Huntington Beach is Dr. Foster E. Wilson, who is the pioneer physician
of Huntington Beach and is still prominent among the practicing physicians of that
city. The youngest of a family of ten children, Dr. Wilson was born in Davis County,
Iowa, March 23, 1853. His parents were born and married in Delaware, came west
to Fayette County, Ind., and in the early forties went to Davis County, Iowa. His
lather, Ebenezer W'ilson, familiarly called "Ebby," a courageous. God-fearing man,
met an untimely death at the hand of a man with whom he had a dispute over forty
acres of land. With his last breath he prayed for the man who assassinated him.
This occurred on January 17, 1853, before V . E. Wilson was born. Dr. Wilson's
mother, whose maiden name was Ann Mitten, reni.Lrriiil when he was six years old,
to J. P. Willis, and the family continued to live on ilic Wilsiui farm.

When he was fifteen years of age Foster E. Wilson started life for himself,
but being determined to get an education he went to school during the winters and
worked out during summers at anything he could find to do, however distasteful
it might be. So ambitious and studious was he that at the age of eighteen he began
teaching school. The ambition of his life was to be in a position to alleviate the
fufiferings of humanity, and with this end in view he entered the oftice of Dr. W. H.
Shelton of Pulaski, Iowa. Dr. Shelton, who has now retired from practice and is
living at Long Beach, Cal., became interested in this worthy young man and loaned
him $500, thus enabling him to enter the Cincinnati College of Medicine and Surgi-i y
in 1875, from which he was graduated with the degree of M. D., in 1877. at tlie a«e
of twenty-four. Returning to Pulaski, Iowa, he entered into a partnership with his
former preceptor under the firm name of Shelton and Wilson, continuing there
until 1882.

In 1878 Dr. Wilson was married to Miss Mary E. Richey, who was born in
Van Buren County, Iowa, near Birmingliam. being a daughter of James Richey, a
prosperous Iowa farmer. In 1887 Dr. Wilson removed to Pratt County. Kans., prac-
ticing medicine; in 1892 came to Westminster, Orange County, Cal.,' and began to




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practice. They are tlie parents of three children, one of whom died in infancy. The
other two are Chester A. and Alma Wilson. Chester A., who is a successful oil man
of Austin, Texas, married Miss Adele Hostetter of that city, and they are the parents
of two children. Mary S. and Joe F. Miss Alma Wilson is well known through her
connection with the Los Angeles Play Ground Commission.

In December, 1904, Dr. Wilson moved from Westminster to Huntington Beach,
just when that city was getting its start, and with the exception of a few years
spent at Monrovia between 1909 and 1914, he has been a well-known resident
physician of that city. In fact, as stated above, he was the first practicing physician
of Huntington Beach. He maintains offices in the Olson Building, 137 Main Street.
Besides building other houses Dr. Wilson is completing a beautiful residence at 312
Fifteenth Street.

Thoroughly absorbed in his chosen profession, Dr. Wilson never lost an oppor-
tunity to increase his knowledge along this line, and in 1900 he took a post-graduate
course at the San Francisco Polyclinic, and another at the Chicago Polyclinic in
1902. He is a member of the American Medical Association, and also of the State
and County Medical associations, being an ex-president of the latter. Much loved
by all who know him for his kindly ministrations and upright character. Dr. Wilson
richly deserves the prominent place he has attained in the city of his adoption.

GEORGE W. ROLFE. — Prominent among Garden Grove's most honored citizens
are the exceptionally interesting pioneers, Mr. and Mrs. George W. Rolfe, for years
active participants at the various departmental and national encampments of the Grand
Army of the Repuljlic, and widely and pleasantly known in war-veteran circles. Mr.
Rolfe was born in Calhoun County, Mich., on September 18, 1848, the son of Orlando
H. Rolfe, civil engineer, surveyor and justice of the peace. He was a native of New
York state, and came to Michigan with his father. Moses Rolfe, and the rest of their
family. The progenitor of the family in America was John Rolfe, who came from Eng-
land, and of his descendants. George W. is the eighth generation in .America. Orlando
Rolfe was married in Michigan to Miss Esther De Pew, and lived on the Rolfe place
in the township of LeRoy, and he died about 1875 in the same house where he and his
wife first began their housekeeping. Mrs. Rolfe considerably outlived her husband,
dying about 1900. They had eight children, and among them George W. was the second
and the oldest son.

George W. attended the common schools of that period in his birthplace, and
when only sixteen enlisted — somebody writing down his age- as eighteen — in- Company C
of the Twentieth Michigan Infantry, for service in the Civil War. He was in the orig-
inal Grand Review that marched down Pennsylvania Avenue, Washington, and fifty
years thereafter, when attending the National G. A. R. Encampment, as one of the
youngest survivors of the Civil War, again marched along the same broad avenue. He
was honorably discharged at Detroit. Mich., in July, 1865. He was stationed with the
Union forces near Washington at the time of Lee's surrender and Lincoln's assassina-
tion, and vividly recollects the eventful hours.

After the war, until he was twenty-one, Mr. Rolfe remained at home on his
■ father's farm; he ran a threshing machine for fourteen years, in Calhoun and Kala-
mazoo counties, and in 1873 he was married to Miss Priscilla J. Hopkins, a native of
New York, who was reared in Calhoun County. They had no children, and adopted a
daughter, Georgina, who is now Mrs. Tony Nelson of Los Angeles. Mrs. Rolfe died in
Michigan, and in 1876 Mr. Rolfe made his first trip to California; he took up his resi-
dence in Compton in the winter of 1883, and began farming on the San foaquin ranch
in 1884.

On September 17. 1905. Mr. Rolfe was married to Mrs. .Amy R. Ford, nee Stevens,
the ceremony being performed by Bishop Mclntyre: she was a playmate of his boyhood,
who was born near Tiffin, Ohio, and came to Calhoun County with her parents, Edward
and Mary (Rose) Stevens, both New Yorkers. The former died at Eagle Rock, aged
ninety-two. the latter in Marengo, Iowa. Mrs. Rolfe has a brother over ninety years,
living at Eagle Rock, and another brother, aged over seventy-six. residing at Pasadena:
a sister, Mrs. .Afifa Wickerd. at Glendale, and another sister, Mrs. Julia Garrison, a
widow, of Santa Ana. all members of a family of nine children. .\ lirother. John
Stevens, left their home in 1853 and came to California; after that other nieml)ers of
the family migrated to the West, and in 1904. at Compton, Cal.. a noted gathering of
.•^even members of the family held a reunion, the only time they had all been together
after fifty years of separation. Mrs. Rolfe had three children bv her marriage with
Mr. Ford: Charles Edward. Effie M. and Julia G.

Mr. Rolfe came to the vicinity of Garden Grove about 1900. and came to own
several ranches. He has returned to Michigan, where he has a sister and three lirothers


living, eight times, but his ninth trip across the continent was directed toward the
sunny climate of California. With his good wife he has been a .live member of the
Methodist Episcopal Church at Garden Grove, and he has been on the official board of
that congregation. In national politics a Republican, Mr. Rolfe's local patriotism has
forbidden narrow, partisan support, and he has worked hard for the best men and the
best measures.

About 1897, Mr. Rolfe joined Sedgwick Post, No. 17, G. A. R., and Mrs. Rolfe is a
member of the Woman's Relief Corps of Santa Ana, where she was installed senior vice-
president of some three hundred members. Together they have attended every depart-
ment encampment of the G. A. R. held in California during the past twenty years, while
Mr. Rolfe has participated in four national encampments — one held at Los Angeles, an-
other at San Francisco, a third at Cincinnati, and the fourth at Washington. Of late
he has sold all his land save his half-acre on ,\cacia Street, at Garden Grove, where he
has his residence.

The Garden Grove News of January Z3. 1920, contains an interesting account of the
local G. A. R. activities of that time. Under the leading caption, "Two of Garden
Grove's Citizens Are Honored," it says:

"At the installation of officers of Sedgwick Post, G. A. R., and the Woman's
Relief Corps, an auxiliary organization, which was held in G. A. R. Hall, Santa Ana,
January 14th, one of Garden Grove's most respected citizens — Mr. George W. Rolfe —
was installed as commander of Sedgwick Post. This position of honor and trust con-
veys with it distinction in the G. A. R., Department of California and Nevada.

"Mr. Rolfe was not alone in being honored by his comrades, as his wife, Mrs. .\my
Rolfe, was also chosen by her sisters of the Woman's Relief Corps to fill the position of
senior vice-president of that organization. At the conclusion of the ceremonies. Com-
mander Rolfe was presented with a beautiful gold G. .\. R. badge, a gift from his
daughter, Mrs. Georgia Nelson of Los Angeles. The presentation was made by Judge
E. T. Langley of Santa Ana.

"Mrs. Rolfe was presented by Mrs. Delia Bishop with a large bunch of beautiful
white carnations, also the gift of Mrs. Nelson, who, with her husband, Mr. Tony Nelson,
motored down from Los Angeles to attend the installation ceremonies.

"Mr. and Mrs. Rolfe have both been faithful workers in these patriotic orders for
many years, and their home has been the scene of many social gatherings of post and
corps, where the generous hospitality of host and hostess has been greatly enjoyed."

GEORGE E. RYAN.— Although George E. Ryan is among the later comers in
Orange County, he is a conspicuous example of a successful citrus fruit grower. He
came to California from York County. Nebr., in 1911, and in January, 1912, purchased
the splendid ten-acre orange grove on Tustin Avenue where he resided with his
family until he moved into his new bungalow in Orange. Two acres of his ranch are
planted to Navel orange trees and eight acres are in Valeucias.

Mr. Ryan was born near Montezuma, Poweshiek County, Iowa, May 11. 1863.
His father, W. L. Ryan, who is hale and hearty at the advanced age of ninety-one,
lives at Sioux City, Iowa. His mother was before her marriage Miss .'\thalia Black,
a native of Virginia. The father was also born in X'irginia, and the parents were
married in that state, migrating to Iowa shortly afterward. Of the fourteen children
born to them, ten grew to maturity. George E., the fourth son in the family, was
reared on his father's farm, experienced the lot that falls to a lad brought up on a
farm, aiid at the age of twelve drove horses and plowed, attending the district school
in the meantime. He remained at home with his father until he attained his majority,
then went to York County. Nebr.. and rented a ninety-acre farm. He raised a bumper
crop of corn, but only got eight cents per bushel after hauling it twelve miles to
Shelby, Nebr. He continued his agricultural pursuits the following year and harvested
another good crop, but the prices were below the cost of production. He then went
with a threshing gang, got two dollars per day for the work of his team and him-
self, and in that way paid for the team and wagon that he bought that spring. His
next venture was in the livery business at Gresham, York County, Nebr. .After
two years he sold the livery business and went into the hardware, pump and windmill
business at Gresham. The firm was known as Fuller, Anderson and Company, and
for fifteen years did a successful business.

Mr. Ryan was married at the age of twenty-six, in 1889, while in business at
Gresham, to Aliss Emma Clem, a native of Illinois, who came to Nebraska from her
native state the same month and year that Mr. Ryan came to the state. Mrs. Ryan's
father was also born in Virginia, and her mother was a native of Ohio. Mr. and Mrs.
Ryan have one child, Clarence, who married Miss Merle Bond. He is cashier of
the First National Bank at Loup City, Nebr., and is the fath'er of two children,


Frank Arlyu and Lillian Ann. Mrs. Ryan, who is an accomplished pianist, has been

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 119 of 191)