Chicago Standard Genealogical Publishing Company.

A Volume of memoirs and genealogy of representative citizens of northern California, including biographies of many of those who have passed away online

. (page 94 of 108)
Online LibraryChicago Standard Genealogical Publishing CompanyA Volume of memoirs and genealogy of representative citizens of northern California, including biographies of many of those who have passed away → online text (page 94 of 108)
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ing" the winter he worked for others at six dollars per day. His ne.xt move
was to Dutch Flat. This place has since been his home and he is now regarded
as one of the oldest citizens of the town. After mining for wages here for
a time, he purchased an interest in the Eastman Hill. He mined there and
at Gold Run for a number of years, taking out considerable gold. During
the whole of his residence in California he has been interested in mining.

After a little more than a decade spent in the Golden state Mr. Harriman
took to himself a wife and made a wedding journey to the east, visiting his
relatives and the scenes of his childhood in Vermont. He was married July 14,
1863, to Mrs. Sarah Bradly, a native of Madison county, New York, and a
daughter of Stephen Reed, of that state. They have two daughters. I)iith
married and living in San Jose. — Mary Grant, the wife of (jeorge Forbs, and
I'^lora Ma3\ the wife of ^^'illiam Ste\\-ard. !Mrs. Harriman is a meml)er of the
Congregational church.

Mr. Harriman's political views are in harmony with the princijiles of
the Republican party, and he has served his county in the official capacity of
supervisor. An important work accomplished while he was on the board of
supervisors was the building of a county hosjiital. a refuge for the indigent
sick and aged people of the county. Fraternally ]\lr. Harriman has long been


identified with tlie Masonic order. He was made a Mason in Clay Lodge, No.
loi, P^ & A. 'Si., at Dutch Flat, in 1857, and has since maintained member-
sliip in the same, filhng acceptably at "different times its various chairs, two
terms serving as the master of the lodge. Mrs. Harriman is a charter mem-
l)er of Placer Chapter. Xo. 49, of the Eastern Star.


When a life-record is ended it is customary to take in review the principal
events which form the history and to make an estimate upon the character
of him who has passed away. George Henry Henser, long a resident of
Georgetown, but now deceased, was regarded as one of the prominent and
influential men of his community. His efforts contributed in no small degree
to the upbuilding and progress of Georgetown and Eldorado county. He
came to California in 185 1 and from that time until his death bore his part
in the work of public progress.

A native of Germany he was born in 1829 and in his native land acquired
his education and learned the baker's tratle. Upon his arrival in San Fran-
cisco, in 185 1, he followed the same pursuit and there engaged in business for
a few years. He was married in that city in 1854 to Miss Mary Lahr, a native
of Germany, born on the river Rhine in 1835. She came to California in 1834.
and after their marriage they located on Mormon island, in Sacramento county,
where ]Mr. Henser conducted a bakery and store until 1869. That year wit-
nessed their arrival in Georgetown, where he built the American Hotel, in part-
nership with John Bundshale. This partnership was continued until 1876
and a successful business was carried on, the firm receiving a liberal patronage
from the traveling public. In that year Mr. Henser was called to his final rest,
passing away in the forty-seventh year of his age. He was an upright, indus-
trious citizens, and in his well-conducted business affairs gained a deserved
prosperity. He also had a wide acquaintance among the citizens of this
county and with the tra\-eling public and was held in warm regard b_\- all
who knew him.

Mr. Henser is survived by his widow and two of their three chil'h-cn.
Henry, the elder, was born at ]\Iormon island. Sacramento county. March 4,
1859, and is a prominent stock-raiser living in Georgetown. He is also one of
the supervisors of his county and is a leading member of the Masonic fraternity.
He wedded Miss Mary Gunn and they have three children. — Edna. Lynet and
Georgia. The one daughter of the family, Katie, became the wife of Joseph
Forbes and died at the age of thirty-nine years, leaving two children. George
Oscar and Sadie. The younger son, \Vdliam Albert Henser, was born in
1863, was educated in Georgetown and became his father's assistant in the
hotel, and at the latter's death, in connection with his mother, assumed the
management of the hotel. The hotel property was destroyed by fire on the
3d of April, 1899. They had but a small insurance and their loss was a heavy
one, I)ut on the old site they at once began the erection of a splendid new hotel.
of modern design, commodious and well equipped. They enjoy a large share


of the business that conies to the town. The liuilding is two and one-half
stories high, contains thirty-four rooms and is forty-six by eighty feet on the
ground floor. The rooms are large, with high ce'ilings, "are well ventilated,
and the place is neatly finished throughout with new furniture. The first
ir.eal was served therein on the 10th of Jj.ily, 1899, and the hotel has since
enjoyed the reputation of being a first-class "house and one of the best in the

William Henser, who is the proprietor of the hotel and its able and i>op-
ular manager, is a Native Son of the (iolden West and is past president of his
parlor, in which he has been honored with the office of treasurer for the last
ten years. He belongs to lioth the sutjordinate lodge and encampment of
the Independent Order of Oild Fellows and has likewise taken the Refiekah
degrees. His political support is unfalteringly given to the Ke])ublican party,
but the emoluments of public ofiice have had no attraction lor him. His
mother is now in her sixty-fifth year. She was to her husband a most excel-
lent helpmate and her efforts contributed in no small degree to his success. She
possesses many excellent qualities and her circle of friends in Georgetown is
^•ery extensive.


Reulien H. Copp, one of the supervisors of Placer county, residing at
Rocklin, is the owner of the Secret Ravine granite quarry at that place. He
is a native of New Hampshire, born on the 22d of December, 1848, and rej)-
resents a family of English origin that was early founded in New England
by descendants of Sir John Copp, of England. The Copps were among the
earliest residents of southwestern J\Iaine, and Samuel Copp, the father of our
subject, was born in South Berwick, of the Pine Tree state. Having arrived at
years of maturity he was married there to Miss Jane Tibbetts, a native of New
Hampshire. They were farming people who lived quiet but honorable lives.
The mother of our subject was a second wife, and by that marriage there were
six children. She died in the fifty-sixth year of her age, while the fatlier
passed away at the age of sixty-eight years. Through many generations the
Copps were influential members of the Methodist church. The parents of
our subject both passed away in the old Granite state and their remains were
there laid to rest.

Reuben H. Copp, whose name introduces this record, was the fourtli in
their family. He was reared to manhood upon a farm in his native ^tate. and
as he worked in the fields he gained in mental and physical strength that fitted
him for life's duties in later years. The public schools afforded him his edu-
cational privileges, and when seventeen years of age he left home to make his
way in the world, going to Massachusetts, where he learned the granite-cut-
ter's trade, following that pursuit in Cape Ann and in HoUoweli. He also
worked at Fork's Island, and in 1876 he went to San Francisco, where he
followed his chosen occupatitju for a year and a half, arriving in Rocklin in
1877. Here he accepted the position of superintendent of a granite quarry


and later acted as manager for G. Griftith for seven years, dnring whicli time
lie did a large amount of granite work, including the work on the San Joaquin
county court house, at Stockton California, and then became the owner of his
present quarry. For the past eleven years he has engaged in business on his
own account, during which time he has taken and executed many large con-
tracts, supplying the granite for the Hall of Records at San Jose, as well as
for manv large edifices in San Francisco. The granite from the Secret Ravine
quarry is of superior quality, being unsurpassed by any found in the state of
California, and the output of his quarry therefore finds a ready sale on the
market and commands excellent prices. He also furnishes a large amount of
granite for monumental work throughout the state, for the stone is capable of
receiving a very superior polish. He has at the quarr}^ all the machinery and
appliances necessary for carrying on the best work in his line and his business
has ir creased in volume and importance until it has assumed extensive pro-

yiv. Copp has been a life-long Republican, his study of the issues of the
day resulting in the belief that the platform of that party contains the l)est
element of good government. However, he is not aggresively partisan, Imt
is a man of liberal and generous spirit and has made many friends in all
parties.' In i8g8 he was nominated on the Republican ticket to the very
important and responsible office of supervisor, was triumphantly elected aiul
is now filling the position to the best of his ability — and that ability is of the
highest order — fully appreciating the importance of using good judgment and
sound business ability in the management of the affairs of the county. Socially
he is connected with the Odd Fellows Society, has passed all of its chairs
and has represented his lodge in the grand lodge of the state.

In 1870 Mr. Copp was married to ]\Iiss Laura Goddard, of \'ermont, but
after two short years of happy married life death claimed her. For six }-ears
[Mr. Copp remained single, but in 1878 was again married, in Rocklin, his sec-
ond union being with [Mrs. Page, a native of New York and the widow of
Dr. Page. Thev have a very comfortable and commodious residence situated
in the midst of large grounds and there their many friends delight to gather,
enjoying the social functions which are held in this hospitable home. From
earlv life Air. Copp has depended entirely upon his own resources, but the
qualities of a successful business man lay dormant in his nature, needing only
the awakening touch of effort to make them result to his benefit. His energy
and keen discrimination in business affairs have enabled him to wrest from
fortune a comfortable competence, and he is 'now one of the substantial citizens
of his adopted county.


A native son of the golden west, through the years of his boyhood and of
an active business career. Mr. Hodgkin has been identified with the interests
of California and is now a prominent merchant of Shingle. He was born in
San Francisco, on the 27th of June, 1854. and is the son of J. W. Hodgkin,


whose birth occurred in Buffalo, Xcw York, in 1823. He came to Cahfornia
in 1854 and during much of his business hfe foUowed merchandising. In his
early manhood, however, he was captain of a vessel sailing from Chicago. He
is a Republican and is a valued member of the Independent Order of Odd Fel-
lows, having exemplified in his life the beneficent spirit of that fraternity. He
is now seventy-six years of age and his wife is seventj-four years of age.
They are spending the evening of their days with their son, D. C. \\., receiv-
ing from him filial care and attention. Thus he repays the debt which he owes
them for their tender rearing. They had five children of whom three are
living: Calista, wife of C. I. Pelton; Ella R., wife of A. J. Hare, a resident of
Oakland, California; and D. W. C.

The last named was educated in the city of San Francisco and entered
upon his business career in the capacity of an accountant and cashier in a
lumber yard. He followed this pursuit for a number of years during which
time he gained a thorough knowledge of practical business methods. In 1886
he embarked in business on his own account and has since carried on merchan-
dising. He has a large stock of goods and also owns his store at Shingle,
and by close attention to business, liberal methods and a straightforward policy
he has secured a good trade which is constantly increasing. He carries every-
thing needed by the mining and farming community by which the town of
Shingle is surrounded and his patronage is now quite extensive. Mr. Hodgkin
also has several valuable mining interests and one of his placer claims is now
being worked with gratifying results.

In 1879 Mr. Hodgkin was united in marriage to ]\Iiss J. G. IMcClnre and
their union was blessed with two children, Howard and Ray. In 1898 he
wedded tlie lady who is his present wife and who bore the maiden name
of Emily J. Cobal. They now have one child, Kenneth Lee. ]\Ir. Hodgkin
holds membership relations with the Native Sons of the Golden ^\'est, belong-
ing to the South San Francisco Parlor. In 1884 he was raised to the sublime
degree of Master Mason and in that fraternity he has many warm friends.
The salient features in his success have been his earnest purpose and his inde-
fatigable energy and through these means he has advanced to an enviable
position in commecial circles.


Fred B. Le^Moin. a resident of Drytown, has spent his entire life in Cali-
fornia, and the fact that he is serving as county supervisor indicates that he
is numbered among the leading residents of his community. He was born
on tlic 14th of March, 1862, and his ancestors were French Canadians. His
father, E. D. LeMoin, was born in East Paw Paw and married Miss S. J.
Marble, a native of Cuyahoga county, Ohio. With his young wife he started
across the plains to California, and on the way their first child was l.)orn.
They came with oxen and cows, the latter helping to draw the wagons as
well as furnish the milk supply. They had no trouble with tlie Indians and
there Nvas im sickness in the company, so after a pleasant journey they settled


at Brownsville, in Eldorailo county, where the father engaged in placer min-
ing, while the mother conducted a hoarding house. Their combined efforts
brought to them a ^■ery comfortable competence. Four children graced their
union after their arrival in California, and in 1864 they were deprived by
death of the father, who died in the thirty-fifth year of his age. Our sub-
ject was then onh^ about two and a half years old. He and his brother
George are now the only surviving children of the family, but the mother is
still living in her sixty-seventh year. She is a Presbyterian in religious
faith. ?vlr. Le]\Ioin had served as tax collector of Drytown for a number of
years antl was a detective. Through his duties throwing him in close con-
tact V ith the Chinese he had learned their language and had a Chinese deputy
for his assistant. He was prominent in the early days in this section of tlie
state and was widely and favorably known.

After the death of her first husband Mrs. LeMoin was again married,
and the step-father would not allow our subject to attend school, so that at
the age of thirteen years he left home, determining to rely upon his efforts
and resources for a living. He obtained such employment as a boy of his
age w^as capalile of performing, — waiting on the table in a hotel and doing
other odd jobs, and in this manner he obtained money with which to buy
books and secure an education. Subsequently he worked at the butcher's
trade for six months, but not finding that to his taste he became an apprentice
at the blacksmith's trade, which he followed for seventeen years in Drytown,
becoming an industrious, honest and expert workman. His ability won for
him a liberal patronage and his relia1)ility gained him the confidence of all
w ith whom he came in contact. An accident, however, occurred which forcetl
him in retire from business. He was struck in the eye by a piece of steel,
and the sight was thus destroyed. After that he turned his attention to
the manufacture of grave railings, in which business he has since engaged.
He has leased his blacksmith shop. Imt still continues to make his home in
Drytown, where he has a good residence. In many other enterprises he has
become financiallv interested, his investments bringing to him good returns.

On attaining his majority Mr. LeMoin gave his political support to
the Republican party, casting his first presidential vote for Hon. James G.
Blaine. ?Ie has since been a steadfast advocate of its principles and on its
ticket he was chosen to the office of county supervisor, which position he
is now creditably filling. He is a member of the JMasonic fraternity, having
attained the sublime degree of a T^Iaster ^Mason in Drytown Lodge, in April,
1898. The following December he was elected its secretary, and in the craft
he enjoys the high regard of his brethren. He is also a member of the
Eastern Star and of the Knights of the ^Maccabees, having two thousand dol-
lars life insurance in the latter order. He is likewise a member of the order
of Native Sons of the Golden \\'est. was president of his parlor for two
years, its secretary for three years and was the installing officer of the district
of Amador, which included five parlors. He has been a delegate to the grand
parlor and is very prominent in the order.

In i88q occurred the marriage of !\Ir. Le^loin and ]\Iiss C. ^Ic^^■ayne,


a native of Toledo, Ohid, and they have two adopted children, Esther and
Harold, who were left orphans at a very early age. They receive tender
care, consideration and love from their foster parents, who are giving to
them gocxrl educational privileges and thus fitting them for the practical and re-
sponsible duties of life. Mr. and Mrs. LeMoin are deservedly popular in Dry-
town and enjoy the warm regard of a very extensive circle of friends. He
is a man of strong character and earnest purpose, and the resolution with
which he conquered his obstacles in early life, securing an education and
working his way upward, indicates his sterling worth. A quarter of a century
ago he was a poor boy, and to-day he is one of tlie substantial citizens of
Drytown. He has certainly won the proud American title of a self-made man
and his success is most creditable.


-A man well known in business circles. Air. Xichols is engaged in carriage-
making and Ijlacksmithing in lone, and the success he has achieved is the
direct reward of his own efTorts. He is numbered among the native sons
(if Amador county, his birth having occurred on the 20tli of December, 1859.
His father, Edward Nichols, became a resident of California in the winter
of 1853-4. He was born in New York, but was reared in Ohio. The paternal
grandfather of our subject was a native of Pennsylvania and was of Ger-
man lineage. At the time of the Revolutionary war he valiantly aided the
colonies in their struggle for independence. In 1S53 Edward Nichols started
for the Pacific coast with ox-teams. He was not disturbed by the Indians
and made a safe journey, locating in Shasta county. California, wliere he
engaged in placer mining with good success. Subsequently he came to the
Sacramento valley and for two years was engaged in farming on the banks
of the Sacramento river. He next moved to Drytown. in .Amador county,
and again engaged in placer mining and in the butchering business until his
removal to Carbondale, when he rented a ranch.

As a companion and helpmate on life's journey he chose ]Miss Mary C.
-Vrmstrong and they located on Drytown creek where he engaged in farming
for three years. TJien returning to Carljondale lie purchased a ranch of one
hundred and sixty acres, continuing its cultivation until his removal to the
Buckeye valley wliere he bought the farm which he cultivated and improved
up to the time of his death, which occurred in 1875. when he was forty-five
years of age. He left a widow and six children. ;Mrs. Nichols is still liv-
ing at the age of sixty-one years, making her home on the farm which was
left her In- iicr husband. She came to California in 1852. with her father,
and is one of the esteemed pioneer women of the state. Of her children five
are still living and are respected citizens of Amador county.

Albert F. Nichols, the eldest of the family, remained with his parents
during his boyhood and to the public-school system he is indebted for the
educational iirivileges he enjoyed. He learned the trade of carriage-making
and ])lacksniithing'in lone and began business on his own account in 18P9.


During the intervening years he has built up the largest trade in his line in
this part of th.e county. He is an expert workman, ha\-ing a thorough under-
standii'.g of mechanical principles, and at the same time is thoroughly versed
in the practical work of the occupations to which he devotes his energies. In
addition to his business he owns a farm of ninety acres in Carbondale.

Air. Nichols is the owner of a pleasant home on Preston avenue, which
is presided over by the lady who in her maidenhood was JMiss Elizabeth
i\Ieiss. They were married in 1890 and she is a native of Drytown, a daugh-
ter of Lewis ^leisS. They have two children, ]\Iarion and Lloyd. Socially
Mr. Nichols is identified with the Lidependent Order of Odd Fellows and
his brethren in the fraternity have demonstrated their confidence in and
friei'dship for him by electing him to various offices in the lodge. Li his
politic^.! views he is a Republican and earnest in his advocacy of the party
principles. All who know him esteem him for his stei'ling worth, and his
life history well merits a place in this volume.


}»Iacauley has said tliat the history of a nation is best told in the lives
of its people, and each community recognizes the fact that there are a few
men who are the leaders in public thought and action, who stand forth as
representatives of the trade interests and are the promoters of that commercial
activity upon which the prosperity of every community depends.

Of this class William Brown is a representative. He resides in Oleta,
Amador county, and is a native of the state of Missouri, his birth having
occurred in St. Louis, on the 21st of January, 1850. He is of Irish descent
and is a son of John E. Brown, who was superintendent of the gas works of
St. Louis. His mother bore the maiden name of Bridget Grinell, anrl two
children were born to them in St. Louis. \\'illiam and George H. \Mth his
wife and two sons the father started across the plains to California in 1852,
and during a brief interval spent at Salt Lake City another son was added
to (he family, to whom the name of John E. was given. While attempting
to kill a bufifalo. in the summer of 1852, the father was gored by the horns
of tlie animal and left upon the field as dead, but life was not yet extinct.
The accident, however, kept the family in Salt Lake City for a year, but
after he had sufficiently recovered they continued their journey to California
and he engaged in i)lacer mining in Rich Bar, on the Cosumne river, where
he continued his mining oj^erations until 1857, ^^ which time Ive secured a
claim three miles below the town of Plymouth and engaged in ranching until
his death, which occurred in 1865. in the forty-fifth year of I'is a^e, his
demise finally resulting from the injuries sustained at the time when he
attempted to capture the liuffalo. The following children were added to the
family in California: .\lbert M. : Elizabeth Ellen, now the wife of John Ellis;
and Matilda .Ann. wife of Frank Hammock. The mother .survives her hus-
band and is now in the seventy-fourth year of her age. Air. Brown was
quite prominent in the affairs of the community in which he resided, and



filled the office of justice of the peace. He was accounted one of the reliable
jnoneer settlers of .Vmador county.

William Brown was in his third year when he arri\ed with his parents
in Amador county. Therefore he was reared and educated in this locality,
and in his }-outh he learned the blacksmith's trade in Oleta, after which he
spent a year in the employ of Repper & Hill, of Sacramento. He worked
at that business for seventeen years at Grisley Flat, in Eldorado county, and
later returned to Oleta, where he purchased the shop in wdiich he had learned
the trade, his old employer being at that time sole proprietor. He has since
carried on business here, meeting- with excellent success as the result of a very

Online LibraryChicago Standard Genealogical Publishing CompanyA Volume of memoirs and genealogy of representative citizens of northern California, including biographies of many of those who have passed away → online text (page 94 of 108)