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 62 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 62 of 191)
Font size
QR-code for this ebook

of the community's dependable citizens.

G. H. FLESNER. — A liberal-minded, progressive citizen of Anaheim whose pros-
perity has very naturally made him love California, the Golden, is G. H. Flesner, who
has the added blessing of a good housewife, an excellent helpmate, a true companion.
Nearly ten- years ago he located at Anaheim, and both he and his friends have good
reason to regret that he did not come here years before.

He was born near Champaign, in Champaign County, 111., on February 16, 1887,
tlie son of Henry Flesner, an early settler, who broke the raw prairie of Champaign
County, improved his first holdings, and bought more and more land, until in all he
had four hundred of the best acres. And there he died, in 1908, his sterling merits
known to all the community. He had married Miss Folke Classen, a worthy woman
of her day and generation, who now resides in California, sharing the comfortable
home of her son, our subject, who is the only child of the family still living.

He was brought up on a farm, and attended the usual public schools of his locality,
after which, for two and a half years, he went to the Watertown, Wis., high school.
From his boyhood he assisted his folks upon the home ranch and after his father died
he ran the farm, which included not less than 240 acres in operation. In 1911 he
came to California, and the following year he disposed of the Eastern home.

On coming here he bought a ranch west of Anaheim, but after a year sold it
again. Then he purchased the place on East Santa Ana Street, consisting of twenty
acres, thirteen of which are in Valencia oranges and seven set out to walnuts. He
also owns four and a half acres on Broad Street, planted to Valencias of the choicest
variety. He owns an electrical pumping plant, and he has a fine residence on the

While yet in Illinois, on October 9, 1904, Mr. Flesner was married to Miss Gertie
Duitsman, a native of Pawnee Rock, Rush County, Kans., but who was reared in
Illinois. Her father was Henry Duitsman, and he had married Miss Ricken Debuhr,
who is now dead. They were farmer folk, and her father still resides on the old
homestead. Five children blessed the fortunate union of Mr. and Mrs. Flesner —
Frieda, Rosie, Henry, Bertha and Carl, all of whom are at home. The family attend
the Lutheran Church, of which Mr. Flesner is a trustee; and in national political
affairs he works for the advancement of the Republican standards.

CLAUDE NEWTON ELLIS. — An industrious, straightforward business man who
is naturally again and again rewarded, in his various enterprises, with an enviable
success, is Claude Newton Ellis, for nearly two decades a Californian by adoption, and
second to -none in his loyalty to the Golden State. He was born in Silex, Lincoln
County, Mo., May 3, 1879, the son of Clark Ellis, who was also a native of Missouri and
became one of the extensive farmers and stockmen in Lincoln County, and later
removed to Montgomery County. Isaac Ellis, the grandfather, was a Kentuckian
equally well and favorably known as a raiser of fine stock in his day, and made a good
record as a soldier in the Civil War. Clark Ellis married Miss Jennie McDowell, a
native also of Missouri; but she died at the age of twenty-three, three years after
Claude was born. She had three children, and our subject was the second in the order
of birth. Clark Ellis died in his native state.

Claude N. Ellis was brought up on the stock farm in Lincoln, and then in Mont-
gomery county, Mo., and studied for a while at Pike County, in Bowling Green anr
then at Watson Seminary, in Ashley, Pike County. When, however, his father became
ill, he returned home to take charge of the farm; and having formed a partnership with
his father, took up farming and stock raising in earnest, and continued at the same
until 1903, when he sold out and came west to California.




He located in Orange: and here, in March, 1904, he married Miss Lillian Northrop,
who was born in Hopedale, near Boston, Mass., and came to California in August, 1898.
She accompanied her father, James H. Northrop, the inventor of the Northrop loom,
manufactured in Hopedale and used in putting out seventy-five per cent of all the cotton
goods manufactured. He retired and chose California as a home place for his latter
days; and coming here undertook ranching, and in time invented a date-pitting machine.
He is living and resides in Santa Ana. After their marriage, Mr. Ellis had charge of
the Northrop ranch, and next he bought an orange ranch in El Modena; later he sold
this and removed to Coachella Valley, where he bought a homestead and a deserted
claim and proved up on it — that is, he and Mr. Northrop had 320 acres, where they
were among the pioneers in raising the date palm, and also figs for commercial purposes.
He had two large pumping plants, and laid 28,000 feet of cement piping.

During this time Mr. Ellis went to St. Louis, Mo., and spent nine months at the
St. Louis College of Embalming, from which he was graduated in 1912. after which he
returned to his California ranch. He became a funeral director in Indio, and was also
a merchant there; at the same time that he maintained on his farm the finest teams of
horses and mules, as well as the latest types of tractors. In October, 1918, he sold out;
and the following March he bought out Blank & Mead, the undertakers at Orange, and
established his present business. He has a chapel, an operating room and a morgue,
and Mrs. Ellis is also an embalmer— the only licensed woman embalmer in Orange
County. Mr. Ellis belongs to the Southern California Funeral Directors' Association.

Mr. and Mrs. Ellis have one child, J. H. Northrop Ellis; they belong to the order
of the Rebekahs. Mr. Ellis is a member of Orange Lodge No. 225, I. O. O. P., and
Mrs. Ellis of Sceptic Chapter, No. 163, O. E. S. Mrs. Ellis belongs to the W. R. C. and
he to the Modern Woodmen of America. Both husband and wife are members of the
First Presbyterian Church of Orange.

JOHN LUTHER MAROON, M. D.— No greater evidence could be had of the
success in every way of Dr. John Luther Maroon as a physician and surgeon since
his advent in Santa Ana in 1917 than in the exceptional confidence reposed in him as
one of the most representative medical men of the state by a large number of Santa
Ana's best citizens. They find in him a good neighbor and a model citizen, who is
devoted to his high professional work, and who goes about doing good with a sympathy
and assurance which begets confidence and optimism, and in itself works miracles in
the healing art. Dr. Maroon was born in Cleveland, Bradley County, Tenn.. in Novem-
ber, 1873, the son of Samuel W. Maroon, a memlier of one of the fine old families of
Tennessee and a merchant who was a leader in the commercial world of his part of the
state. He married Miss Sarah Elizabeth Henderson, a representative of another
family equally held in high esteem in the South, a charming lady of accomplishment
and beauty. They are now both dead; but their six children — among whom our subject
was the fourth in the order of birth — attested to their nobility of character, and the
good influence they bequeathed to others.

John Luther Maroon attended the grammar schools of his locality, and later en-
joyed the advantages of the Chattanooga high school. Then he matriculated first at
Grant University at Chattanooga, Tenn.. and then at Vanderbilt LIniversity, Nashville.
Tenn., where he was graduated in 1912 with the M.D. degree. Having well equipped
himself for the practice of medicine by close application under the direction of some
of the most learned medical instructors of the day, Dr. Maroon spent a year at Chat-
tanooga Hospital in his native state, and for three years joined the medical fraternity
at Portland, Maine, where his agreealjle personality soon made for him a host of friends.
In 1916, however, he let the pendulum swing far to the westward and came to Cali-
fornia, long noted for its pick of surgeons and physicians; and for a year, he was
house surgeon at Loma Linda Hospital in Loma Linda.

He has now been a resident of Santa Ana for three years, having established him-
self here in 1917 in the practice of medicine and surgery, and it hardly needs to be said
that he is doing very well. He is highly esteemed as a Fellow of the American Medical
Association, and stands equally high as a member of the California State Medical
Society and of the Orange County Medical .\ssociation. His scientific bent, his soundly-
trained mind, and his helpful ideals have enabled him to grasp the latest word or cue,
and to suggest where and how others may follow in his lead. .\s a skillful surgeon he
has been able to dare and effect what not every practitioner of surgery would attempt,
while as a consulting or visiting physician he has brought light and hope to the sick
room, and easily induced those inclined to despondency to hope, look up, go forward,
save themselves. Dr. Maroon is very conscientious in his examinations, having always
in mind the deep welfare of the patients and no accommodation he can render them is


too hard or difficult for liim to do. It is noted that his patients are verj' loyal and have
explicit confidence in him, counting his friendship an acquisition to the family.

Two children, bearing the names of Catherine and Dorothy, add to the attraction
of the doctor's hospitable home, which is pleasantly situated in a suburban walnut
grove at 407 West Seventeenth Street— a large modern bungalow, tastefully furnished.
A Republican in national politics. Dr. Maroon is decidedly nonpartisan in all matters
affecting local life and development, and has both caught and disseminated the Orange
spirit which leads to helpful loyalty to Orange County and her promising towns. As
has already been intimated, it has been the boast of California since her entrance amid
the sisterhood of States that her medical men and women have been and are, both in
respect to ability,' experience and character, second to none in the world; and not
only may Orange County therefore congratulate itself that Dr. Maroon pitched his
tent at Santa Ana, but it is a subject of interest to the old state when such an aggres-
sively progressive man of science conies here instead of going to some other corner
of the waiting world.

MILO BAILEY ALLEN. — A rancher whose present prosperity is the result of
his industrious, untiring work of development, is Milo B. Allen, senior member of
Allen Brothers, whose ranch of seventy-seven acres lies on Euclid Avenue, north of
Garden Grove. Born at Spring Valley, Fillmore County, Minn.. January 9, 1880, he is
the son of Lucian Waite and Rhoda Ann (Conklin) Allen. The father was born in Erie
County, Ohio, and came to Minnesota in the early days, being one of the pioneer wheat
growers of that region, and there he lived for more than fifty years. Mrs. Allen was
a native of Pennsylvania, and came out to Minnesota when a young girl, and there
she met and married Mr. Allen. This branch of the Allen family are lineal descendants
of Robert Allen, a brother of Ethan Allen of Revolutionary fame, and the traditions of
this old colonial family were well sustained by Lucian Waite Allen, who had an excellent
record in the Civil War. He served for four years in the Union Army with the Third
Minnesota Volunteers as principal musician in his regiment, being a fifer. He was
considered the best fifer in Minnesota, and after his removal to Southern California
he was often asked to play in military bands on patriotic occasions. His death occurred
in 1914, at the age of seventy-seven years.

Milo B. Allen spent his early years on the home place at Spring Valley, Minn.
Here he attended the local schools, the Spring Valley high school, the Spring Valley
Normal, and later taking a three years' course at the Minnesota Agricultural School at
Minneapolis, where he graduated in 1901. Thus he was unusually well equipped for
the undertaking in which he has made such splendid success. In 1905 Lucian W. Allen
came to California, locating in the Garden Grove district, where he bought twenty acres
of land. A few months later Milo B. Allen and his brother, Joseph Garfield, whose
sketch also appears in this work, also bought a tract of twenty acres. It was a
.=tubblefield, and they at once began to improve it, leveling and irrigating it, putting in
several miles of cement tile. They have made subsequent purchases in small amounts,
and under the name of Allen Brothers they now jointly own and operate a ranch of
seventy-seven acres. Of this, fifty acres have been set to Valencia oranges, that are
from three to ten years old: twenty-five acres are in Eureka lemons, and two acres in a
family orchard of deciduous fruits. They have developed an inexhaustible supply of
water, having a well 195 feet deep. They irrigate by means of an electric pumping
plant with a forty-five foot lift. Besides irrigating their own ranch they furnish water
to others, having a sufficient supply for 140 acres. During the years of development
the brothers did a tremendous amount of work in bringing their holdings up to their
present high state of cultivation, for some time raising lima beans and peppers between
the trees to help pay expenses. Now the trees are in full bearing and the income
received by them reaches a handsome figure.

In 1902 ,M. B. Allen was united in marriage with Miss Hattie Crosby, a native
of Fillmore County, Minn., where their marriage occurred. She is a sister of C. G.
and C. B. Crosby, both prominent citrus growers of Garden Grove. Mr. and Mrs.
Allen are the parents of seven children: Lucile, who was born in Minnesota, Ruth,
Lawrence, Burton, Dorothy, Gertrude and Marjorie. In February. 1919, Mr. Allen
was elected president of the Garden Grove Orange Growers Association, and he is
filling this responsible position with the greatest success and satisfaction to all con-
cerned. This association, which was organized in 1916, met a long-felt want on the
part of the citrus growers of this district. Its first president was John D. Arkley, who
served for two years, followed by James Henry, who occupied the ofhce for one year,
up to the time Mr. Allen was elected. E. L. Dozier has ably filled the position of sec-
retary and manager since its organization, and J. O. Arkley is now the vice-president.


The other directors are: J. O. Arkley, Fred Andres, A. E. Snitiger, Anson Mott, F. G.
Rosselott, James Henry and Mr. Allen. Mr. Allen, with his family, is a member of
the Baptist Church at Garden Grove, and he is a member of the board of trustees.
The family are very prominent in the social life of the community, and Mr. Allen's
affability and generous spirit have made him justly popular among a large circle of
friends; his rise to affluence is indeed well deserved, as it is the result of intelligent,
well-directed industry on his part.

JOSEPH GARFIELD ALLEN.— Dating back to the earliest colonial days, the
Allen family has reason for pride in its history. Patriots ever, and always in the fore-
front at any time of their country's need, one of the outstanding members of this
notable family is familiar to everyone — Ethan Allen of Revolutionary fame, the hero
of Ticonderoga. It was a brother of this famous soldier, Robert .\llen, who is the
progenitor of two of Garden Grove's most influential citizens, Joseph Garfield Allen
and Milo B. Allen, who as partners in the firm of Allen Brothers, are among the most
prosperous citrus growers in this section, their grove of seventy-seven acres being
situated on Euclid Avenue, north of Garden Grove.

Joseph Garfield Allen was born at Spring \'alley, Minn., January 12, 1882. He was
the son of Lucian Waite and Rhoda -\nn (Conklin) Allen, natives of Ohio and Penn-
sylvania, respectively, who were both among the early settlers of Fillmore County,
Minn., where they met and married. There were nine children and four are now
living, all residents of California: Mrs. Charles Maas of Santa Barbara; Mrs. Amy
Graves, of Garden Grove: Milo B. and Joseph Garfield, of this review. Mrs. Lucian W.
Allen passed away at their Minnesota home in 1896, and in 1905 the father came to
California. Joseph G. was reared on the home farm in Fillmore County until he was
about fifteen years old, and received a good education in the schools of the district
and in the high school at Spring Valley. Later he completed his education with a
course at Western College at Toledo, Iowa, now known as Leander Clark College,
and upon locating in Orange County he and his brother have worked together in
harmony to develop their citrus groves, as is shown in the sketch of Milo B. Allen.

J. G. Allen was married in 1909 to Miss Bertha Oertly, a daughter of Conrad
Oertly; she is a talented and accomplished woman and an excellent helpmeet. They
have three children, LeRoy Richard, Archie Eugene and Junior Garfield. The family
belong to the Baptist Church at Garden Grove and Mr. Allen is the choirmaster, as
both he and his brother have inherited much of the musical talent of their father.
He is a member of the Garden Grove Orange Association, the Garden Grove Farm
Center and the Central Lemon Association of \'illa Park. .A.n advocate of prohibition,
he is always to be found on the constructive side of all the questions of the day. A
hard and industrious worker, agreeable and gentlemanly, he and his family have a
large circle of warm friends.

L. W. HEMPHILL.— .An enterprising, public-spirited man who stands high in the
estimation of the people of Orange, who have chosen him to be one of their city
trustees, is L. W. Hemphill, who was born at Millford, Dane County, Wis., on August
14, 1874, the son of S. K. Hemphill, a native of New York, who settled in Wisconsin
and married Miss Alice Brelsford. They were farmer folk of the finer American type,
and in 1875 brought their family to California and settled a mile south of Orange.
Later, they bought the ranch, setting it out with grapes, which failed on account of
the blight; after that he ordered orange trees, of the St. Michael, Mediterranean and
seedling types, which in time he budded to Navels. He also ran a citrus nursery.
Finding that Valencias did better he budded some and set the balance to this species.

Mr. Hemphill followed orange culture here until 1905, when he sold out and
located at Long Beach, where he engaged in the sale of real estate, and this he
followed until he retired, to make his home in that city. His good wife had passed
away in 1884. Thej' had three boys and a girl, and all are living save one of the sons.
Alice has become Mrs. Ellsworth, of Yakima, Wash.; Earl is in Placentia; and Lawrence
W. is the subject of our sketch.

At first the lad went to school to Mrs. Alice Armor, and then he continued to
attend the public grammar school. From a boy he learned orange culture and the
work in a nursery, under his father on the home ranch, and during boyhood, also, he
worked for three or four years in a packing house. Then he clerked in Canfield's
Grocery, and after that was in the service of D. C. Pixley's Hardware Store. With
Clifton Hamilton he then started a shoe and novelty store at the corner of North
Glassell and the Plaza, in Orange; but after two years he sold out, and ne.xt suffered a


siege of illness. After that he had charge of the boot and shoe department of the
Ehlen & Grote Company, and he gave that up only when he decided to take up real
estate. He not only sold, but bought and improved several ranches, and did something
for Orange in opening subdivisions. He put on the market the Hemphill & Paxton
subdivision, on East Culver Avenue, consisting of ten acres, now handsomely built up;
also the Thermalita tract on North Glassell and Walnut streets — this last enterprise
in partnership with D. C. Pixley and Charles Ehrman There were ten acres in this
tract, and all are also now sold and built up. With his brother-in-law he bought and
improved twenty acres, settmg them out to oranges.

He himself bought fifteen acres at Olive, on the Santiago Boulevard, which he
improved with oranges, building a residence and making there his home for some
years; and then, with Mr. Spencer, he bought forty acres of sage brush and cactus
on Anaheim Boulevard, which he cleared and leveled. He put in a pumping plant and
set out Valencia oranges, and now it is one of the finest groves in the county. Finally
he sold this at a handsome profit. All this time he was located on his ranch in Villa
Park; but in March, 1919, he sold this also, and settled in Orange. He built a residence
on South Orange Street, which he later sold; and now he is located at the corner oi
Palm and Olive, having built two residences here.

At Orange he was married to Miss Flossie P. Spencer, a native of Iowa, who came
here as a child and attended the local public schools. Both husband and wife are
members of the Methodist Church, and Mr. Hemphill belongs to the official board.
In the spring of 1920 he was elected a trustee of the city of Orange, and he is now
chairman of the committee on streets, and also a member of the police commission.
He gives promise of being just the man for these peculiar responsibilities, and Orange
is to be congratulated on the choice of such a public servant.

MRS. EMMA BURCHFIELD COOPER.— An admirable example of California
womanhood, a worthy representative of other worthy Americans, long influential in
rhe communities in which they lived and amid the civilization they helped to guide and
develop, is Mrs. Emma Burchfield Cooper, who has long been successfully interested
in horticulture in Orange County and is now the owner of a fine ten-acre ranch at
Hemet, devoted to apricots and walnuts. Pennsylvania was Mrs. Cooper's native state,
her birthplace being near Meadville, in Crawford County. She came of an old family
of that vicinity, her parents, David and Elsie (Scowden) Burchfield, both having been
born there. Grandfather Burchfield was a native of Ireland, but came to Crawford
County, Pa., in the early days and engaged in agriculture there, residing there until his
death. Mrs. Cooper's maternal grandfather, David Scowden, was also of an old
Pennsylvania family and spent his whole life there.

After farming in Pennsylvania for a number of years. David Burchfield brought
his family to Illinois, settling in De Kalb County, and was there engaged in agriculture
until a short time before he passed away, his death occurring at his old home in
Pennsylvania, whither he had gone on a visit. Mrs. Burchfield survived her husband
for some years, spending her last days in Iowa in the home of her daughter, Mrs.
Cooper. The youngest of a family of ten children, only two of whom are now living,
Mrs. Emma Burchfield Cooper came to Illinois with her parents at the age of nine
years and was reared on the home farm in DeKalb County, receiving a good education
in the public schools there. On reaching young womanhood she was united in marriage
with C3liver Cooper, who was born near Belfast, Ireland, his father being a minister
of the Presbyterian faith. After their marriage, Mr. and Mrs. Cooper decided to locate
in Iowa, and they became pioneer settlers of Story County; here they homesteaded
160 acres of raw land, putting the first plow in the virgin prairie soil, and improved
and built up a nice home. Like the pioneers of every age and country, their task was
far from being an easy one, but with youth, strength and ambition on their side, they
were happy and successful in their undertaking.

After some years, however, Mr. Cooper's health failed and they decided to seek
a milder climate; as a result they came to California, settling in Orange County.
Pleased with the prospect of spending the coming years in this balmy climate, with
its beautiful surroundings, they purchased a ranch at Villa Park, disposing of their
holdings in Iowa. There was twenty acres in their Villa Park place, and through
their care and cultivation it became one of the finest orange groves in that locality.
The responsibility of its care became too heavy, however, on account of Mr. Cooper's
continued ill health, so they sold it and removed to East Palm Avenue, Orange. Mr.
Cooper then carried out a long-cherished desire to visit his old home in Ireland, and
three months after he arrived there he passed away and was laid to rest beside his
father and mother.

CJ^S^O ^^ ^ 6^0 o^^'.


After her husband's death, Mrs. Cooper continued to be actively interested in

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 62 of 191)