George Henry Tinkham.

History of Stanislaus County California : with biographical sketches of the leading men and women of the county who have been identified with its growth and development from the early days to the pres online

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Online LibraryGeorge Henry TinkhamHistory of Stanislaus County California : with biographical sketches of the leading men and women of the county who have been identified with its growth and development from the early days to the pres → online text (page 118 of 177)
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Stanislaus Catholic church, where he continued until 1918, when he became assistant
to Father John Casin at Santa Rosa, and then assistant at St. Paul's, San Francisco.

In November, 1920, he started for a trip back to his old home in Ireland, visiting
his parents, who are still living. After a pleasant stay, he returned to San Francisco
in April, 1921, and July 20, 1921, he was appointed pastor of Sacred Heart church at
Turlock, where he immediately assumed charge. The Church of the Sacred Heart
was established as a mission by Father Giles of Modesto and was attended from
St. Stanislaus parish until about 1910, and a small church was built on the West Side.
In 1910, Rev. Dennis Bailey was appointed rector and was the first resident pastor.
He was a man of business acumen and foresight, purchasing the present beauti-
ful site in the eastern portion of Turlock and built the large, substantial brick church,
as well as the parsonage ; he also laid out and beautified the large, spacious grounds.
The property comprises a half of a city block, so there is ample room for the building
of a school. In October, 1915, he was succeeded by Rev. Patrick E. Heslin, who was
very active and zealous in his work, his pastorate being very satisfactory and the
means of building up the congregation, and the church debt was materially reduced.
In July, 1921, Rev. Heslin was succeeded by Father Quirke, who is continuing the
work in the same satisfactory manner.

The congregation of the Church of the Sacred Heart is large and flourishing,
and has the different sodalities of the church, which are well attended. The grounds
are well kept and attractive and a pleasing sight to the visitors in Turlock. Father
Quirke is a man of pleasing personality and his education and years of experience
qualify him admirably to preside over the destinies of the congregation. He is an
enthusiastic worker in the Knights of Columbus, his membership being in Modesto.

CLARY W. COLE. — An energetic, level-headed man who has become very active
in the local automobile world, and has attained success such as speaks for itself, is
Clary W. Cole, the genial proprietor of the Midway Auto and Sheet Metal Works,
now one of Modesto's busiest spots on Ninth Street. He was born at Chicago, Octo-
ber 3, 1890, the son of A. W. and Harriett Cole, and his father was a commercial
traveler. Clary was given a good grammar school education, and for two years he
was a student of the high school at St. Paul, Minn.

In 1909 he struck out for himself; and going to Omaha, he took up mechanics
and was identified with the Baysdoffer-Yeager Company, and under that firm of
expert electricians had a valuable experience. From Omaha he went to Chicago
and worked for the Chicago Great Western Railroad in the freight train depart-
ment; but after six months he returned to Omaha and took a position with the
Apperson Auto Company. In the fall of 1910, he came to Pasadena for a short visit,


when he returned East and at St. Paul was with the Shotwell-Harris Company,
automobile sheet metal works. Then he accepted a position with the Todd Manu-
facturing Company of Minneapolis, where he continued for about a year. In 1914
he again came to California and for more than a year was with the Western
Mechanical Works, Pasadena ; he next spent a year at Santa Monica with the Miller
Automobile Company.

In April, 1916, Mr. Cole went to Bakersfield and worked for ten months in
the Ford Garage. There he started in business for himself and had an auto sheet-
metal shop at 2317 Chester Avenue; and from Bakersfield he removed to Oakland
and there opened up another business of the same kind. On July 7, 1919, he came
to Modesto and established the well-known concern at present so closely identified
with automobile interests in Stanislaus County ; and now he has the best-equipped
place for sheet-metal work in this section of California.

On June 18, 1914, Mr. Cole was married at St. Paul, Minn., to Miss Mata
Karger, a native of St. Paul and the daughter of J. C. Karger and his devoted
wife, Mata Carolina, her father being a merchant in that place. Mr. and Mrs.
Cole attend the Lutheran Church, and Mr. Cole marches under Republican banners.

ELIC L. ROUTH.— Since 1876, when he was a youth of twenty years, Elic L.
Routh has been a Western pioneer in the truest sense of the word, intimately asso-
ciated with the early history of various sections, and during the ten years he has been
a resident of Stanislaus County he has given much time and strength toward its up-
building. Born in Fayetteville, Washington County, Ark., June 15, 1856, he
was one of seven children, four sons and three daughters, of whom two are living,
Mrs. A. E. Morris, the oldest child, and Elic L., the youngest. His father was
Benjamin Murrel Routh, a native of the Sweetwater Valley of the Cumberland
Mountains, his parents owning a plantation of 700 acres in Arkansas. The family
were of Scotch-Irish ancestry on the paternal side, and faithful Presbyterians. Our
Mr. Routh was sent to private school, but had a dull time, being full of imagination
and romance, and finding little satisfaction in the pages of books, while the wide
world called without. It was not until he had gone out into the world for himself
that he realized his mistake in not applying himself seriously to his education. Always
fond of horses, he was given his first pony when he was five years old and raised it
from a colt, breaking it himself with great gentleness. When he was nine years of
age he accompanied his father on a round-up in Texas and rode his horse over the
range, driving the cattle through the Indian Territory into Arkansas and Missouri,
where they were sold. The beginning of 1876 found young Routh in Texas, where
he was employed as a cowboy riding the range on the frontier. He was also identi-
fied with the early settlers who defended the plains of Wyoming against the uprisings
of the Indians and it was while he was a cowboy riding the range about sixty miles
north of Fort Fetterman that the attacks against the whites were made by Sitting
Bull. While in Nevada and Wyoming he became well acquainted with Buffalo Bill
Cody, the most prominent character of his day on the frontier ; the nearest post office
was sixty miles away, and the nearest white neighbor perhaps thirty miles.

In 1884 Mr. Routh moved farther West, locating in Asotin County, Wash,
(then a territory), where he was appointed by President Cleveland clerk of the superior
court, which office he filled until 1889. He owned a 1,000-acre stock farm near
Asotin, the county seat, which he operated with great success until 1909. At that time
he disposed of this ranch and moved to Freewater, Ore., where he engaged in the gen-
eral merchandise business for a year, coming from there to Stanislaus County in 1910.
He immediately purchased fifty acres in Wood Colony, and for five years engaged
in dairying. Since 1915 he has followed general farming, raising principally hay and
beans. His property on Shoemake Road, six miles west of Modesto, is valuable.

Mr. Routh, since coming to Modesto, has identified himself very closely with
progressive public interests, and served as deputy sheriff for two years, making an envi-
able record. In 1914 he aided with the reorganization of the Stanislaus County
Farmers Urn 011 , and was elected its president. He is a member of the Prohibition
party, serving as a member and the chairman of the Prohibition County Central Com-


mittee and giving of his time and means towards the cause. Mr. Routh served as a
member of the governmental committee, of which George T. McCabe was the secre-
tary, when the canvass was made of Stanislaus County to find the available supply
of stock and farm products that might be needed for use of the Government dur-
ing the World War, and he was chairman of the Committee for Relief in the
Near East. He was president of the United Telephone Association, serving until
1918, and was one of the committee who carried the fight through the supreme court
against the Telegraph and Telephone Company, which won the suit to have a public
utility district organized here. In May, 1920, he was elected a director of the
Modesto Irrigation District in a recall election, proving a very powerful candidate
as a representative of the people, and in February, 1921, was elected to that position
for a four-year term by a handsome majority.

The marriage of Mr. Routh to Miss Jennie Fine occurred at Cloverland, Asotin
County, Wash., in 1885. Mrs. Routh is the daughter of Spencer and Jane Fine, both
natives of Tennessee, of German and Welsh ancestry, respectively. Two sons have
been born to them, Lewis C, a member of the U. S. Marines with the rank of ser-
geant, and Lawrence D., a mechanician at Modesto.

JOHN F. KNAPP. — A leading contractor and builder of Turlock who has
been sought for important commissions by other communities as well as in Stanislaus
County, is J. F. Knapp, who was born in Minonk, Woodford County, 111., graduated
from the Bloomington Business College, and was then agent in his birthplace for the
American Express Company. In 1911 he came west to California and at Los Angeles
engaged in the building trade. His skill and experience were soon recognized.

In August, 1914, with business credentials such as many would regard as capital
in themselves, Mr. Knapp located at Turlock, and he has been here ever since, active
in the field of general contracting. He has built the branch of the Commercial Bank
at Hilmar, and also the edifice of the California Peach Growers here. He put up
the California Theater owned by the Turlock Theater Company, the Fernandez
Building and the Varners Garage ; and he erected the Carnegie Library and numerous
fine residences, not to speak of important warehouses, the two Geer buildings, and the
postoffice building. He belongs to the Board of Trade and, besides owning city prop-
erty, also has interests in ranch property.

In Illinois, Mr. Knapp was married to Miss Edna Steinbach, also a native of
Illinois, and they have two children, Eugene and Rachel.

Mr. Knapp was made a Mason in Robert Morris lodge of A. F. & A. M., at
Minonk, 111., and having been demitted, is now a member of Turlock Lodge, No. 395,
F. & A. M. He belongs to the R. A. M. at Rutland, 111., and is a charter member of
Modesto Commanderv No. 57, K. T., and he is also affiliated with the Al Malaikah
Temple, A. A. O. N. M. S., at Los Angeles.

HOWARD H. HULS. — Cooperative grower of a variety of fruits, an organizer
and executive of more than ordinary ability and force, Howard H. Huls is one of
the men of this section who is doing much to develop forward-looking policies for the
betterment of both fruit rancher and ultimate consumer. Mr. Huls is a director and
vice-president of the Cooperative Canneries Association of California at Modesto, a
member of the California Peach Growers Association, and also of Prune and Apricot
Growers Association. He has made a careful study of growing and marketing con-
ditions and is one of the most successful growers in the county. He owns sixty-four
acres of fine land in the Wood Colony precinct, three miles northwest of Modesto,
which he purchased in the fall of 1908, and on which are now some of the finest
orchards in the state, including peaches, apricots, prunes and walnuts. In addition to
this, Mr. Huls double-crops twenty-five acres to barley and beans.

Mr. Huls is a native of Jasper County, Iowa, born October 17, 1881. His father
was Henry Huls, a native of Indiana and of German ancestry, and his mother was
Miss Rena Burr, a native of Indiana, but who pioneered into Iowa with her parents
when she was a child. Her maternal ancestors were distinguished professional and
business men, while her paternal ancestors were descended from the Aaron Burr line


of the famous old English family of Burr, which was at one time one of the great
landed families of the British Isles. Henry Huls was one of the early grain farmers of
the plains of Iowa, and here Howard Huls, who was one of a family of four sons,
received his education, attending the public schools at Monroe, Iowa, and assisting
with the work of the farm. When he was a lad of twelve years the family came West,
locating in Madera County, CaL, in 1893, where the father engaged in farming.
Later they removed to San Benito County and still later to Stanislaus County, where
the father died. Mrs. Huls is now the wife of Dr. A. A. Woods.

For a time Mr. Huls worked on harvesters and at other farm work in Madera
County, being paid the wage of thirty dollars per month. He was married on March
20, 1907, at Hollister, San Benito County, to Miss Ella B. Hubbard, a native of that
place, born November 18, 1885. Her father was Thomas Benton Hubbard, a native
of Missouri, who came west at an early date, settling in Nevada, where he engaged in
the stock business until coming to California about 1881. Her mother was Miss
Sarah Rebecca Purdin, also a native of Missouri, where she married Mr. Hubbard
and immediately started back to Nevada where Mr. Hubbard was a pioneer stockman.
They had six children, three born in Nevada and three in California, all living but
one son, who died aged twenty-seven. Virgil P. is in Hollister; Mrs. Ernest Huls of
Modesto; Mrs. Grover Stone, of Wood Colony; Mrs. H. H. Huls, and Mrs. Charles
Thomas of San Francisco. Mr. and Mrs. Huls are the parents of two children,
Ralph Everett and Ardis Rosalie. Mr. Huls is wide awake to all matters of public
interest and is always ready wherever energy and hard work promise real results.

ROY SUNDERLAND. — A representative business man who, in "making good"
himself, has also helped along his fellows, is Roy Sunderland, the plumbing contractor
at Turlock, who was born in Kansas City, Mo., on July 5, 1889, the son of Al E.
Sunderland, of Fresno, the secretary and treasurer of the California Peach Growers,
Inc., and his good wife, who was Miss Lillian Gilliam before her marriage. A. E.
Sunderland was a New Yorker by birth, the son of E. R. and Mercy (Cronkhite)
Sunderland, the former of old New York, and the latter of early Massachusetts and
Mayflower stock. At the age of fourteen he came West to Kansas City, worked for
a while as clerk for the Armour Packing Company, and then became manager of the
Kansas City Towel Supply Company, during which period he met his future wife.
Her father and mother were Robert and Elizabeth Gilliam, the former a farmer, a
Civil War veteran and a marshal of Kansas City, and they have resided at Fresno
since the middle eighties. On coming to Fresno County in 1889, Al Sunderland
engaged in viticulture in the Kutner Colony ; moved to Clovis, when that town
started, and for three years ran the big planes for the Fresno Flume and Irrigation
Company. An accident, causing the loss of an eye, brought him to Fresno, and after
filling several positions of responsibility, he took a prominent part in the organization
of the California Peach Growers, Inc., and became secretary. He also became the
head banker of the Woodmen of the World in the Pacific jurisdiction. Four children
were born to Mr. and Mrs. Sunderland. Roy was the oldest ; then came Hazel, now
Mrs. La Moyne of Dinuba ; the third in order was Netta, the popular actress with
the Walter Hampden Company, in New York, one of the greatest Shakespearean
actors since Edwin Booth's time, where she is now playing second lead. At the Fresno
Raisin Day parade she has played the role of Goddess of Liberty and Miss America.
The youngest of the family is Pearl.

In 1891 Roy was brought to California by his parents, and lived first in the
Kutner Colony and then at Clovis, where he went to school, continuing his studies
after his twelfth year in Fresno. When he was seventeen years old, he apprenticed
to a plumbing firm, Barrett & Hicks, and having completed his trade in four years, he
worked for the firm for a year as journeyman, and on April 10, 1912, established him-
self at Turlock as a plumber. He bought the land at 227 South Laurel and there
built a residence, a plumbing shop and a warehouse ; and while doing general jobbing
and contract work, he installed the plumbing in the new Southern Pacific passenger
station, the new Carnegie Library, the Sweet Potato plant, the California Peach
Growers plant, the Hume Company cottages, the Mackay building, the Masonic


Temple, and the residences of Siem, Crane, Pierson, Knapp and Berlin. Mr. Sun-
derland has been a director of the Turlock Chamber of Commerce for the past four
years, a member of the Turlock Progressive Business Club and president of the Tur-
lock Master Plumbers Association.

On May 31, 1913, Mr. Sunderland was married at Sacramento to Mrs. Alice
Jackson, nee Zeek, who was born in Kansas City, Mo., and there reared and edu-
cated, coming to California in 1907. By her former marriage, she has a son, Lauren,
and another son by her second marriage named Al. Mr. Sunderland is past consul
commander of the Woodmen of the World, is a member of Turlock Lodge No. 98,
K. P., and was made a Mason in Los Palmas Lodge No. 366 at Fresno, demitted in
1913 and joined Turlock Lodge No. 395, F. & A. M., where he was senior deacon.
He was elected secretary in 1916, and has been re-elected each year since. He is also
a member of Merced Pyramid of Sciots, No. 14, at Merced. With his wife he
belongs to Wistaria Chapter No. 296, O. E. S., and the Royal Order of Amaranth at
Modesto, while Mrs. Sunderland is a member of the Neighbors of Woodcraft.

HARVEY W. REBMAN. — A representative citizen of Modesto, who has made
a name and place for himself by his practical experience as a contractor and builder
of fine homes, is Harvey W. Rebman, already rated as one of the successful builders
in Stanislaus County. He has been very active since becoming a citizen of this rapidly
growing city, and his services are in great demand where conscientious and scientific
workmanship is desired.

A native of Ohio, Harvey W. Rebman was .born in Canton on August 9, 1884,
the son of William and Mary (Fisher) Rebman, farmer folk of the Buckeye State.
The lad grew up with a good common school education obtained in the district school
of their locality, and when he was sixteen he started to learn the trade of carpenter
and for four years served an apprenticeship in Dayton. He next spent two years with
the Reckworth Lumber Company, general contractors of that city, and further devel-
oped his knowledge of building. In the fall of 1909 Mr. Rebman came West and
settled in Modesto, where he soon secured employment at his trade and worked for
various contractors until 1914. He concluded that there was no better field for the
building business than Modesto, and, as he had mastered the western methods of the
business, embarked as a general contractor and from the very first he met with gratify-
ing success and specialized in first-class homes and bungalows. Among some of the
more important homes erected by him may be mentioned the residence of Dr. E. V.
Falk, a $30,000 home; one for W. F. Flowers; three fine bungalows for Mr. McCann,
now of Los Angeles, and four for J. B. Palmer. In 1918 he built his own home at
912 Sixth street, a model of its kind and size. In the prosecution of his contracts he
employs from sixteen to forty-five men, as the occasion demands, and is always busy.

At Modesto, on October 19, 1910, Mr. Rebman and Miss Mary Robinson, also
a native of Ohio, born at Lima, were united in marriage, and they have become the
parents of four interesting children, Lucile, Robert, Bernice and Dorothy. Mr.
Rebman is a member of the Loyal Order of Moose of Modesto, belongs to the Cham-
ber of Commerce and to the Modesto Ad Club, and in every way favors all lines
of progress. Stanislaus County has been fortunate in the past in drawing to its circle
just such men as Mr. Rebman.

WILLIAM D. TOOMES. — Among Modesto's citizens of prominence and influ-
ence W. D. Toomes must be mentioned, for to the distinction of being a native son
he has the further honor of being a son of one of the pioneers of the memorable
year of '49. He was born at Visalia, Cal., in 1867, and is the son of John Toomes,
who was born in Cole County, Mo. At the time of the Mexican War the elder
Toomes joined the colors before he was of age and attained his majority while in the
service of his country. Immediately after the war with Mexico he was married in
Missouri to Elvina Walser, a native of that state. In 1849 John Toomes crossed
the plains to California and engaged in mining at Placerville. He returned . to his
eastern home via Panama, and in 1852 again took the toilsome journey to California
over the plains, this time accompanied by his wife and brother-in-law, Dan W.

CH^ 1/K 'TLcJU^o-^-


Walser. They settled at Walker's Basin, Kern County, and engaged in the cattle
business. Later, Mr. Toomes sold his interest and located two and one-half miles
west of Visalia, where he engaged in raising hogs. In 1876 he added sheep to the
enterprise, and in 1877, the notable dry year, failed financially because of the drought.
He then went to Sonoma County and remained a year. In 1878 he located near
Stockton and engaged in the occupation of farming, and in 1884 came to Stanislaus
County where he continued the occupation of tilling the soil until his death, which
occurred in 1911, aged eighty-six years, his wife having passed away in 1882. Of
their family of four children all are living.

William D. Toomes, the second child, was schooled in Tulare and San Joaquin,
and from a youth had experience in farming, particularly in raising grain. When he
was seventeen years of age the family moved to Stanislaus County, and he remained
with his father in the new home until he attained his majority. He then hired out to
grain ranchers and drove big teams for five years. After this he bought an outfit,
leased land near Salida and engaged in raising wheat and barley on a 1,500-acre
ranch. When the canal was completed and water brought for irrigation he began
improving 160 acres of land he had purchased previously. He leveled and checked it,
planted alfalfa, and an orchard of Muir and Lovell peaches and a vineyard. He
brought the place to a high state of cultivation, sold it and bought sixty acres of land
which he also improved and planted to alfalfa. He disposed of this property and
entered the general real estate business in Modesto with Mr. Fredericks, under the
firm name of Toomes and Fredericks, and has been very successful in this business
venture. He is unusually well informed in land values and makes a specialty of ranch
property. Mr. Toomes has seen Modesto build from a small hamlet to a large and
prosperous city, and the county emerge from a dry-crop country to one of intensive
farming, with beautiful orchards, vineyards and alfalfa and vegetable fields. He and
Mr. Fredericks own several ranches of orchard and farm property.

Mr. Toomes' marriage, which occurred near Salida, united him with Miss
Emma Hining, one of Stanislaus County's native daughters, and the result of their
union has been three children. Hazel, who was Mrs. Noones, died at the age of
twenty-five, leaving a daughter, Wilma, who resides with her grandparents. Ray-
mond, who was in the United States service, is now in business in Modesto, and
William, who resides at home. Fraternally Mr. Toomes' affiliates with the Modesto
Lodge of B. P. O. E., and is a member of the Chamber of Commerce.

ARMOUR B. SMITH. — During the eighteen years that they have been resi-
dents of Stanislaus County, Armour B. Smith and his capable wife have placed the
stamp of their public-spirited personalities indelibly upon the pages of its history.
Their valuable farm of 100 acres in McHenry precinct is known as Hollywood Park,
and is one of the beautiful home places of the county. Adjoining it, and from which
it originally took its name, is a tract of about an acre and a half, which Mrs. Smith
bought with her own money and has herself set out to a park, which her splendid
generosity and hospitality makes the center of social activity for the community. This
little park lies across Lateral No. 6, one of the large canals of the local irrigation
system. This has been artistically bridged, and rowboats and bathing facilities in-
stalled. A Japanese tea house has been erected, and picnic tables installed. The land-
scape gardening and the selection of the trees and shrubbery for this delightful garden

Online LibraryGeorge Henry TinkhamHistory of Stanislaus County California : with biographical sketches of the leading men and women of the county who have been identified with its growth and development from the early days to the pres → online text (page 118 of 177)