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 38 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 38 of 191)
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buru) Duguet, who were farmers for many years in that part of France. The fourth
of a family of six children, Mrs. Daguerre is the only one living and the only one to
come to America. She was educated in the convent at St. Pierre de Yrube, and in 1874
sailed from Havre with the Amestoy family, landing at New York. They continued on
to San Francisco and then to San Pedro by boat, reaching Los Angeles, June 24, 1874,
nnd located on a large ranch at Rosecranz, now Gardena. Here Mrs. Daguerre con-
tinued to make her home with the Amestoys until her marriage, at the Amestoy resi-
dence, to Jean Pierre Daguerre on October 7, 1886.

Mr. Daguerre was also a native of Basses-Pyrenees, Hasparren having been his
birthplace, and he came over on the same boat as Mrs. Daguerre, being eighteen years
of age at the time. Here he was employed with the Amestoys in the care of their
stock, so became thoroughly experienced in this work, continuing with them for eight
years, when he resigned to begin stock raising on his own account. Making his way
to San Juan Capistrano he formed a partnership with Don Marco Forster as sheep
growers. After his marriage Mr. Daguerre and his wife went to El Toro, where he
continued actively in the sheep business for several years. After dissolving partnership
with Don Marco Forster, Mr. Daguerre formed a partnership with Mr. Lewis F.
Moulton on his extensive ranch of 22,000 acres, the business being conducted under the
name of Lewis F. Moulton and Company. The partners met with phenomenal success,
and after the death of Mr. Daguerre on May 5, 1911, Mrs. Daguerre, who had been a
true helpmate in sharing the business responsibilities of her husband, continued in the
partnership, and still owns a third interest 'in the ranch. The Moulton ranch is one
of the largest and most profitable in Southern California, and upwards of fifteen tenants
are engaged in raising beans, grain and hay on its extensive acreage. In addition the
Moulton Company is engaged in raising beef cattle on an immense scale, their herd of
high-grade Durhams being one of the finest in the county.

Mr. and Mrs. Daguerre were blessed with six children, the two younger of whom
passed away in infancy. Domingo Joseph, who after the death of his father assisted
Mr. Moulton and took an active part in the affairs of the company, was a well liked
and popular young man displaying splendid traits of character and much ability, when
his promising career was cut short by influenza, January 11, 1919, at the age of thirty-
one; the three daughters are Juanita, Grace and Josephine.

Mrs. Daguerre resides in her comfortable residence on the Moulton ranch with
her three loving daughters, who shower on her their affectionate care and devotion, and
assist her in the management of the large interests left by her husband, thus doing all
they can to shield her from unnecessary worry and care. While far from her native

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land. Mrs. Daguerre has never had cause to regret her choice in estaljlishing a home in
this beautiful Southland, whose resources rival that of any other country. The family
take an active part in civic matters and are strong protectionists and Republicans.
They are liberal and enterprising and give their aid to all matters that have for their
aim the upbuilding of the county and the enhancing of the comfort and happiness of
its citizens.

MRS. WYRAM L. KNOWLTON.— More than one romantic chapter in the his-
tory of California is recalled by the records of Mrs. Wyram L. Knowlton and her
interesting family. She was born in Yorba, Los Angeles County, in 1859, the daughter
of Ramon H. and Concepcion (Bustamente) Aguilar, and was named Nicanora. Her
father was a native of Spain, born in 1801, and the son of Jose M. and Dolores (Villa-
viciencio) Aguilar, w-ho left his native land when Ramon was a baby and settled on a
grant of land in Lower California. The father of Jose M. was tailor to the King of
Spain and he was given a large grant of land in Lower California for his fidelity, and
this was in turn handed down to his children at his death, Jose M. being given the
Guadalupe grant as his portion. The ancestors of the family were among those who
assisted the padres in founding the early missions and they later returned to Spain, but.
eventually settled in Lower California, from which place members of the family mi-
grated to California and helped to lay the foundation for our present commonwealth.
Jose M. Aguilar was a man of wealth, as it was counted in those days, and he spent
liberally of his means to uplift the native Indians, an ambition that was always upper-
most in his soul. He died when Ramon H. was a small child.

Ramon Aguilar lived in Lower California until 1827, when he migrated to Cali-
fornia and here he was married to a native daughter of the West, and by her had fifteen
children, all born in California, and nine of them grew to years of maturity. Those
still living are Mrs. Nicanora Knowlton, Mrs. T. A. Darling, Mrs. Edward Crowe,
R. F. Aguilar and Mrs. Herman Fesenfeldt.

Nicanora Aguilar was united in marriage in 1896, in Orange County, with Wyram
L. Knowlton, a native of Wisconsin, born at Castle Rock on December 4, 1853. He was
educated in Wisconsin and lived in Iowa for some years and migrated to California in
1889. He became the owner of considerable land in Orange County, which he .sold off
from time to time, having improved it in the modern manner of the period, only retain-
ing ten acres, the home place of the widow today. This couple had one daughter,
Laura, a graduate of the Anaheim high school and now the wife of Paul V. Domen-
guez. Mrs. Knowlton busies herself with the care and improvement of the ten acres
she owns, assisted in the operation of the place by her daughter. Mr. Knowlton was a
member of the Fraternal Brotherhood and was a liberal supporter of all movements
for the upbuilding of his adopted county, and was held in high esteem by all who had
the pleasure of knowing him. His widow and daughter are equally liberal and have a
wide circle of friends.

WYLLYS W. PERKINS.— An able, efficient man of business, who was never
known to be afraid of hard work, is Wyllys W. Perkins, the retired rancher, residing at
806 Spurgeon Avenue. Santa Ana. whose financial success began the day when he
formed a partnership with his brother, Charles H. Perkins, formerly a wholesaler in
New York state. He was born in Oconomowoc, Waukesha County. Wis., on May 23,
1860, the son of Charles H. Perkins, a native of Windsor, Conn., where he married Miss
Elizabeth Hinsdale. They came out to Wisconsin in the early forties, and while Mr.
Perkins farmed, he and his good wife also kept a general merchandise store at
Oconomowoc. Wyllys is the youngest of seven children in the family, and when five
years old was brought by his parents to the vicinity of Grand Rapids, Kent County,
Mich., where his folks went in for farming and the raising of fruit. He attended the
common schools of Kent County, and under the wholesome conditions even then
prevalent in Michigan, received an excellent preparation for the battle of life.

When fifteen years of age, Mr. Perkins left Michigan to join an older brother.
Clarence, at Burlington, Kan., and for two years he was with him on a stock farm at
Strawn. He worked on the ranch during the summers, and in winter time went to
school nearby. After two years of outdoor life, however, he returned to his home in
Michigan and entered the Commercial College at Grand Rapids, where he took a two
years' business course. On coming west again to Kansas, he went to work for a short
time for the Missouri, Kansas & Texas Railroad Company, when he again shifted, this
time to La Junta. Colo., at which place he was given a responsible post with the
.\tchinson, Topeka & Santa Fe Railroad. He had charge of coal bins until he found it
possible to make still another move — to California — when he fired a locomotive at
Eureka, in Humboldt County, on the Boner & Jones logging railroad.


At the end of a year he went to San Luis Obispo and was with the narrow-gauge
San Luis Obispo and Port Harford Railway, where he fired for six or eight months; and
then he went to Mojave and secured a position with the P. L Railway, now a part of
the Santa Fe system. He was next promoted to be an engineer on a switch engine in
the Southern Pacific yards in Los Angeles, and switched for that company for eight
months. Later he became a locomotive engineer for the Los Angeles & Pacific Rail-
way, and for a couple of years ran a passenger train from Los Angeles to Santa Monica.
.\fter that he went to the Santa Fe Railroad and for seven years ran both passenger and
freight engines, mostly between Winslow and Williams, in Arizona, but also as far as
-Albuquerque, N. M.

During this time, at Grand Rapids, in 1884, Mr. Perkins was married to Miss Clara
Lee of that city, and for a while he made his home at Winslow, although he started
housekeeping at Mojave. He first became fireman at the roundhouse, and ran a
general merchandise store in connection with his railroad work at Mojave. He fol-
lowed railroading until 1894, when the great A. R. U. strike occurred, and he was
discharged for refusing to run the engine of a striker.

He then came to Orange County and spent six or seven months looking around, so
•that he made no mistake when he finally settled at El Modena, where in 189S he
purchased ten acres of unimproved land. His brother, Charles H. Perkins, now eighty
years old, and residing at 911 Spurgeon Avenue. Santa Ana, was then extensively
engaged as a dealer in wholesale fruits in New York, and bought California fruit and
hone}'; and while visiting California on business he came to El Modena to see his
brother and the ten-acre ranch, and there proposed a partnership to be known as the
Perkins Bros. They bought more land, and soon had 160 well-improved acres, in the
El Modena precinct. They also acquired a ranch at McFarland, in Kern County; but
they traded it for more land in Orange County.

For several years, also, Mr. Perkins was in the seed and nursery business, growing
rose bushes on a commercial scale; and later Perkins Bros, specialized first in flower
seeds, and then exclusively in rose bushes- They produced and shipped as high as
five or six car loads a year, and this enterprise proved decidedly profitable. In 1917
the firm dissolved, and since then Mr. Perkins has sold so much of what he once had
that he Jias left only two ranches, both in the El Modena district, the one of thirty-one.
the other of ten acres, and has retired to live in Santa Ana. Mr. Perkins helped
organize, and is still a stockholder in the Villa Park Orchards Association.

Eight children blessed the union of Mr. Perkins and his wife. Elizabeth, the
eldest, lives at home; Frank died in Arizona when he was five years old; Winnifred
and Wyllys, W. Jr.. are twins — Winifred is the wife of W'illiam Thomas, a mechanical
engineer, residing at Los Angeles, and Wyllys is married and lives, as a rancher and an
orange-grower, at McPherson. Dixie, a trained nurse with an enviable record for
service in France during the late war, keeps house for her father. Arthur and Archie
are also twins; the former is in the Agricultural College at Corvallis, Ore., and Archie
attends the high school at Santa Ana. And Clara is in the grammar school of the
same city. Mrs. Perkins died March 19, 1906, and he married a second wife, Miss
Fannie Parker, of Grinnell, Iowa, who also died — on December 10, 1919.

Mr. and Mrs. Perkins were active in building up the Community Church established
at Villa Park under the auspices of the Congregational denomination, and since his
removal to Santa Ana, he and his household have supported and attended the Congre-
gational Church at Santa Ana. He is prominent in the Orange Lodge of Odd Fellows,
where he is a past grand, and with a frank, sincere, winning disposition, is influential
in many ways, and often in times of emergency, for good among his fellow-men.

ROBERT HENRY ENGLISH.— .\ native of Ireland, the years of whose young
manhood were spent in Canada, but whose residence in the United States covered a
period of more than forty-five years, is Robert Henry English, one of Orange County's
stanch pioneer citizens, who had a large part in the early development of this locality,
coming here, as he did, when the country was practically a wilderness. He was born
in County Carlow, Ireland, about twenty miles from Dublin, in 1850. the son of
Thomas and Esther (Agar) English. The father, who was a farmer, was born in the
same count}', but was of English ancestry, the mother also being a native of Ireland.
In 1860 the family came to Canada, settling near Woodstock, Ontario, and there Thomas
English engaged in farming.

Robert H. English grew up on his father's farm, learning to help with the farm
work while he attended the public schools of the vicinity. When he reached the age
of sixteen he entered the employ of the firm of Oswald & Patterson, machinists and
foundrymen, at Woodstock. Being apt at mechanics he soon became an efficient
machinist and foundryman, and also learned to be a capable steam engineer, running


the stationary engine in the plant of Oswald & Patterson the last year or two he was in
their employ. He remained a trusted employee of this firm for nearly eight years.
during which time he was united in marriage with Miss Matilda Meadows.

In 1873 Mr. English moved with his family to Platte County. Nebr., and was there
during the terrible "grasshopper years" of 1873-4-5, when these pests were so numerous
that they actually darkened the sun. Mr. English's crops were entirely eaten up and
it was then that his knowledge of machinery stood him to good advantage. He
purchased a steam thresher and began operating it, and was thus able to earn a living,
even in the face of the severe financial loss the failure of his crops had caused. He
was determined to seek a better country, however, so with his family he came to
California, reaching Los Angeles February 23, 1875. They soon came down to what
is now Orange County and Mr. English purchased land and began at once to make
improvements. Always with a decided penchant for doing things on a big scale, he
continued to buy land and at one time owned five different ranches, aggregating 388
acres. For several years he farmed 2,500 acres of land on the Bolsa Chico and the
mesa at Huntington Beach to barley. On much of the land purchased by Mr. English
reclamation work was necessary, and he spent much time and labor in bringing his
holdings up to a high state of cultivation.

While Mr. English's interests were largely in the field of agriculture, he also
engaged in other lines of work that have contributed to the development of the material
progress of Orange County. In 1886 he engaged with Grant Brothers as a sub-
contractor and helped on the grading of the Santa Fe Railway as far south as the San
Joaquin Ranch, now the property of James Irvine. He also continued to operate steam
threshing outfits in Orange County from the time of his arrival here until 1912. In
that year he went to Santa Ana and for four years was street superintendent there;
during his incumbency the city of Santa Ana put in seventeen and a half miles of gravel
and oil streets and eleven and a half miles of macadamized streets.

Mr. and Mrs. English became the parents of five children: William H. resides in
Santa Ana; Susan M. is the widow of the late Frank J. Johnson and lives at Los
Angeles; Ida May is the wife of Duncan E. Sova of Los Angeles; Fred J. and John T.
are twins. The former is a prosperous ranchman in Bolsa precinct; he married Miss
Ida May Hickey of Ferris, Cal., and they have one son — Frederick Gerald. John T.
married Miss May Jacobsen of Orange and they are the parents of two children —
Harold R. and Ella Marie. Mrs. Robert H. English passed away December 21, 1916.
and Mr. English survived her until October 6, 1920, when he died at the residence of his
son Fred. Mrs. English was a member of the Episcopal Church, as were the parents
of Mr. English, but he embraced the doctrine of the Baptists. In political matters he
was an independent, preferring always to consider the qualifications of the candidate
and the principles at stake, rather than adhering to strict party lines. Fraternall}- he
was a member of the Maccabees and the Fraternal Aid Association.

SAMUEL B. EVERETT.— For nearly half a century Samuel B. Everett has been
identified with the agricultural interests of Orange County, in the vicinity of West-
minster, having located there December 1, 1875. He is a worthy descendant of an
honored New England family and is justly proud of being a grandson of Eleazer
Everett, the young patriot who served his country during the Revolutionary War.
Eleazer Everett was stationed at Boston Harbor, afterwards at Providence, R. I., and
when he received his honorable discharge from Captain Heath's company on April 8.
1778. after three distinct enlistments, he was but nineteen years of age- He was among
those that witnessed the death of the noted British spy. Major Andre, in 1780.

Samuel B. Everett was born in Francistown, N. H., November 10, 1840. the son
of Williard and Frances S. (Dodge) Everett. The family moved to what is now
Metamora. 111., in 1843, becoming pioneers of Woodford County, and there carved out
their future from the virgin soil. Both Mr. and Mrs. Everett were school teachers and
took such pride and pains in the careful and thorough instruction of their young son.
that he received a more liberal and extensive education than most young men of his
day. During the dark days of the Civil War, when the disruption of the Union, for
which his grandfather, Eleazer Everett, had fought, was threatened, the patriotic young
grandson determined that the Union must be preserved at all costs, and proved tliat
he was a worthy descendant of his illustrious grandfather by joining Company G,
Fourth Illinois Cavalry, serving for two years and ten months in the Western depart-
ment of the army, during which time he was in many engagements with the enemy,
but escaping without a scratch.

On September 3. 1867, in Oberlin. Ohio, Samuel B. Everett was united in marriage
with Miss Clara Specs, a native of Ohio, and a teacher in Natchez. Miss., where they
met. Three children were born to them: .Arthur taught school in Southern California


for twenty-two years; he married and became the father of three daughters and two
t.ons, his death occurring in 1916 through an accident; Clara E. and Clarence B., twins,
both died in infancy. Mr. Everett lived in Livingston County, III., about eighteen
months after his marriage, then removed to Fremont County, Iowa, and thence to Ida
County in that state, where Mrs. Everett passed away. In 1874 Mr. Everett returned
to Woodford County, 111., and there on September 13, his second marriage occurred,
Aihen he was united with Miss Sarah Lamson. She was a native of New Hampshire,
born there on May 1, 1841, and in 1854 came to Metamora, 111., with her parents,
William and Sarah (Starrett) Lamson. The father, who was a glass worker in New
Hampshire, engaged in the brokerage business after coming to Illinois and there ac-
cumulated a competency. He removed to California in 1877, and both he and his wife
passed away here.

Two children were born of Mr. Everett's second marriage, William and Justin, both
now deceased, named after their mother's brothers who served throughout the Civil
War. They resided in Iowa for a year after their marriage, coming to California in
187S, William Bradford Lamson, Mrs. Everett's brother, a four-year veteran of the
Civil War, having come to this state in 1873. They first located at Westminster, but in
1876 they went to live on a forty-acre ranch, where they followed general farming for
a number of years, during which time Mr. Everett was interested in the dairy business,
having at one time twenty-five head of dairy stock. After disposing of his ranch Mr.
Everett moved to his present place in 1884, an inheritance from his wife's father of
fifty acres, where he has continued general fanning. They have sold off from time
to time until they have the original home place of five acres.

Mr. Everett is an honored member of Sedgwick Post, No. 17, G. A. R.. while his
wife is a member of the Women's Relief Corps. In religious matters Mr. Everett is a
member of the Seventh Day Adventist Church and was the first elder of the church
at Garden Grove; Mrs. Everett is a Presbyterian.

LINN L. SHAW — The steady growth and the increased prosperity of Orange
County is directly the result of the early settlers in this locality, who have spent the
better part of their lives in developing its latent resources and in building up a com-
munity which socially and economically ranks with any in the state and has during
the years attracted the better class of citizenry to help in the further advancement
of this ideal home community. Prominent among these pioneer citizens is Linn
L. Shaw, of the realty firm of Shaw & Russell, who for nearly thirty-five years has
been identified with the progress of Santa Ana.

Descending from sturdy New England stock, Linn L. Shaw was born at Mar-
shalltown, Iowa, July 29, 1866, his parents being Chancy and Mary (Morrison) Shaw,
both of whom were natives of Maine. Attending the grammar and high schools of
Marshalltown until the age of fourteen, Mr. Shaw left the schoolroom to learn the
printer's trade, apprenticing himself to a local paper in his home city- Continuin.g
there until he had become proficient in his chosen work, in 1883 he went to Plank-
ington, S- D., and later was at Mitchell and Sioux Falls, in that state, spending in
all about three years there. Returning to his Iowa home in 1886, he found quite a
number of its residents preparing to go to California, as that was the beginning
of the great boom periods of the Golden State. An opportunity offered to secure
free transportation to the coast by accompanying a shipment of fine horses of
several prominent citizens of Marshalltown who were removing here, and Mr. Shaw
at once availed himself of this chance. .Arriving at Los Angeles he worked for a
few weeks on the Los Angeles papers, but hearing of the new town of Santa Ana
he decided to try his fortune there, and locating there in December, 1886, he has
since made it his home. Clerking for a time in the music store of A. L. Pellegrin,
he was soon offered a position on the Pacific Jl'eclcly Blade. The next year, when the
Daily Blade was started by A. J. Waterhouse, who had been one of the founders of the
ll'cekly Blade, Mr. Shaw was made city editor of the daily paper, a position he held until
the dissolution of this journal in 1889.

Mr. Shaw's next connection with the printing business was as proprietor of a
printing plant, which he afterward disposed of, retaining the position of foreman
until 1893, when he purchased a half interest in the Orange County Herald, conducting
this as a daily and weekly until 1903, with E. S. Wallace as a partner. In the mean-
time, in August, 1902, Mr. Shaw was appointed postmaster of Santa Ana, and the
increasing duties of this office was one of the prime reasons for the disposal of the
Herald, which was absorbed by the Blade. Conscientious and efficient in the discharge
of this important office, Mr. Shaw served as postmaster until 1913, directing the postal
affairs of the district with judicious economy, yet keeping the service up to a high



In 1917 Mr. Shaw formed a partnership with Roy Russell in the real estate
business, and this firm has taken a prominent place among the realty dealers of this
vicinity, dealing in high-grade properties and handling a large volume of business.
Mr. Shaw's long residence here and his consequent familiarity and thorough under-
standing of soils and land values of Orange County, combined with his enviable
reputation for square dealing, give him a deserved prestige in the realty world.

On February S, 1889, Mr. Shaw was married to Miss Hope E. Grouard, the
daughter of Benjamin F. and Dr. Louisa (Hardy) Grouard, pioneer residents of Santa
Ana, whose decease occurred many years ago. Four children were born to Mr. and
Mrs. Shaw: Faith, Ted, Marjorie and Carol.

A stanch Republican, Mr. Shaw has always been deeply interested in politics,

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 38 of 191)