Copyright
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

. (page 157 of 177)
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 157 of 177)
Font size
QR-code for this ebook


her only child, Mrs. Davis. Mrs. Davis attended school in Oklahoma and Missouri.
Upon arriving in Modesto Mr. Davis bought some lots on Second Street, erected two
houses, one for himself and the other for Mr. Darr, but sold that property and at
present he and his family are living at 831 Sixth Street. He is a Democrat and a
member of the American Yeomen.

JOSEPH R. WARD. — Modesto, the favorite City of Homes, owes much for
its modern conveniences and comforts to such men of enterprise as Joseph R. Ward,
who has charge of the local trade of the Modesto Ice Delivery, and oversees the de-
livery of ice to the ever-increasing customers. He was born at Toronto, Ontario, on
May 13, 1876, and is the son of William and Sarah Ann Ward. Mr. Ward was a
farmer and a stockman, and on removing from Canada to the United States in 1891,
he came to California and settled in Fresno County, at Fowler, where he continued
ranching, making a specialty of fruit culture. He died in 1912, a year after the death
of his devoted wife.

Joseph Ward attended the excellent grammar schools of Toronto, and soon after
coming to California with his father, launched out for himself. He farmed until
1900, and then took up the ice business in Fresno, becoming manager of the Con-
sumers Ice Company's plant, which position he filled with ability until 1916. Then he
accepted the post he now fills with the Modesto Ice Delivery.

Descending from the well-known Ward family of England, which came to
America in the stirring days of the British Colonies, some remaining in the United
States, some going north of the line into Canada, Mr. Ward has never had any diffi-
culty in adapting himself to American or California ways, and it is not surprising
that he and his service are so acceptable to all who deal with or through him. He
also owns an oil service station in Fresno.

On September 13, 1896, Mr. Ward was married to Miss Rose Ann Adams, a
native of Leamington, Canada, and the daughter of William and Mary Adams, who
came to California in 1892 and settled in Fresno County. Mrs. Ward enjoyed the
best public school advantages in Canada, and so has been able to do well by her two
children: Edith, who is Mrs. A. Beeskow of Fresno, and Ruth Helen, who lives at
home and attends the high school. Mr. Ward belongs to the Masons of Modesto and
the Odd Fellows and Woodmen of the World in Fresno.

RICHARD KEITH WHITMORE.— A worthy representative of a distin-
guished family of the San Joaquin Valley, Richard Keith Whitmore, cashier of the
thriving Bank of Hughson, may well be proud of the civic and the military record of
his father, Col. R. K. Whitmore, of the Spanish-American War. He came from
New Jersey to California about 1875, and while still a young man undertook the
farming of grain at Stockton. After a while, he moved to Ceres, and quite naturally
assumed leadership in the early days of that town. He married Miss Annie Pagels,
and she, too, has her share of the credit as a founder of the promising town. More
and more he became active in public affairs, and for twenty-five years he served in the
California National Guards. He was for a while major of infantry, and he was



1386 HISTORY OF STANISLAUS COUNTY

mustered out as colonel of the Sixth California Regiment Infantry after seeing credit-
able Spanish War service. In Ceres, honored of all, he passed away in 191 1.

Richard Whitmore attended both the grammar and the high schools of Ceres,
and was graduated from the latter institution when he was eighteen years old. where-
upon he at once tried his hand at farming, and cultivated the old Whitmore ranch :
and when the World War broke out he entered the service of the United States. He
enlisted in November, 1918, trained at Kelly Field, at San Antonio, Texas, as a mem-
ber of the Six Hundred Sixty-sixth Aero Squadron, and at the end of three months
was transferred, first to one and then to another aero squadron. He spent four months
at the camp at Garden City, on Long Island, when he was sent overseas, where he
served eight months. Returning to Camp Kearney, Cal., in April, 1919, he received
his honorable discharge.

In 1920, Mr. Whitmore came to Hughson and entered upon the duties of teller
in the Bank of Hughson; and after a short service he was promoted to be the cashier.
His natural ability, experience and tact all have combined to make him helpful and
congenial to the patrons of the bank, and also to the general public, and has meant
increased growth in the business of the institution.

A Republican in matters of national political import, Mr. Whitmore is too broad-
minded a citizen to allow party ties to impede him in supporting the best candidates
and the best measures for the community in which he lives, works and thrives. He
belongs to the Baptist Church of Ceres, and is a welcome member of both the American
Legion and the Veterans of Foreign Wars.

WILLIAM M. REPASS.— A thoroughly-trained, all-around mechanic, Wil-
liam M. Re^ss. proprietor of the bustling garage at Hughson, furnishes a reliable
service which not only the citizens of the town, but also motorists for miles around
fully appreciate. He was born at Canton, Fulton County, 111., on September 5, 1894,
the son of William M. Repass, a farmer, who had married Miss Mary Inez Wilcoxen ;
and when our subject was thirteen years old, his parents came out to California,
in 1907, and settled on a ranch of forty acres near Turlock, devoted to fruit. Thus
William attended the grammar school at Denair and the high school at Turlock.
When eighteen years of age, he started a motorcycle shop at Hughson — the first estab-
lished in the town ; he began with the Thor agency, then added that of the Indian,
and finally had the Harley-Davidson. He was also often called upon to do repair
work on automobiles, and such were the demands upon his time and resources, that
he was compelled to seek more room and a better equipment.

In 1920, Mr. Repass purchased the old Hughson Garage and its outfit — a
structure of corrugated steel, 50x80 feet in size, and at the same time he took into
partnership J. B. Fritts, also a competent mechanic ; and now together they do all
kinds of automobile repair work, as well as battery and ignition work. They know
their business, and they seek and merit the patronage they enjoy by giving individual
and patient attention to each person in need of their services. Hughson may well be
congratulated on the excellent garage service made possible by the combined efforts
and experience of these talented mechanics, Messrs. Repass & Fritts.

At Hughson, on December 6, 1916, Mr. Repass was married to Miss Stella
Swagerty, a native of Fresno and the daughter of S. C. Swagerty, a highly-respected
citizen of that city. One son has blessed their union — Marion Clayton by name.

HARRY P. ALGAR. — The successful proprietor of a thriving drug store at
Hughson, Harry P. Algar was born near Seattle, Wash., on March 9, 1884. the son
of James Nelson and Rosanna (McKinnell) Algar, farmer folk who hailed from
Ontario, Canada, and came out to Washington in the seventies. When Harry was
six years old, his parents moved to Vancouver Island, and there, near Nanaimo, took
up farming; and in time they had one of the best grain farms for many miles around.

Harry Algar attended both the grammar and the high schools of Nanaimo, and
then he matriculated at the Ontario College of Pharmacy in Toronto, Canada, from
which he was graduated in 1907. He returned to the United States on graduating,
coming to Santa Cruz, Cal., and for four years he worked as a pharmacist. He then



HISTORY OF STANISLAUS COUNTY 1387

came to Modesto in 1911 to take charge of Mr. Player's drug store, in the absence of
that gentleman, while he was pursuing his medical studies; and he liked the town so
well that he remained there for four years.

In 1915, Mr. Algar removed to Hughson, and immediately he established the
Algar Drug Store, which he has conducted so successfully for several years, being now
located in his own building on Main Street. His thorough knowledge of the drug
trade, viewed both scientifically and commercially, has operated to draw steadily in-
creasing patronage; with the result that while building for himself, Mr. Algar has
been able to equip his establishment better and better, and to expand to the great
advantage of the community at large. He seeks to anticipate the wants and the wishes
of all classes, and visitors from other and larger towns are often agreeably surprised
to learn what the modest but carefully stocked drug store affords.

At Modesto, on June 28, 1911, Mr. Algar was married to Miss Jennie L. Jones,
a native of Westport, Stanislaus County, and the daughter of J. I. and Lilly (Hilyard)
Jones. Her grandfather, Humphrey Jones, was a plantation owner in Missouri in
ante-bellum days, and as a genuine '49er, he left Missouri and came out to California.
Her maternal grandfather, Leonard Hilyard, came from Virginia and settled near
Stockton, and he grew to be interested heavily in farming and stock raising. Later, the
Hilyards removed to Westport. Mrs. Algar enjoyed both grammar and high school
advantages, attending the schools of Modesto. Mr. and Mrs. Algar have two chil-
dren, James Nelson and Philip Morris Algar.

Mr. Algar is a member of the Elks, belonging to Modesto Lodge No. 1282 of
the B. P. O. E. ; and he was made a Mason in Stanislaus Lodge No. 206, F. & A. M.,
at Modesto, and is a member of the California State Pharmaceutical Association.
Putting aside all partisanship when broad and generous support are necessary to local
success and growth, he marches with the Republicans in national processions.

JUDSON W. MANNING.— An old-timer in California, who retraced his steps
to the Golden State when the lure of the Pacific was greatest, is Judson W. Manning,
the well-known real estate broker, who is opening a new tract bearing his name. He
was born at Catskill, Greene County, N. Y., on the banks of the Hudson, November
14, 1864, the son of John and Lana (DuBoise) Manning, worthy folks who always
well represented the Empire State; but while he was still very small his father, who
had been the captain of a Hudson River boat, removed his family to Kansas and settled
near Clyde, and Judson attended the district schools of Cloud County.

In 1888, about the time of the great "boom" in realty here, Mr. Manning left
Kansas and came to California, settling in Mendocino County ; and for two years
lie worked in the lumber mills at Usal, where he helped to haul the machinery from
Rockport to build the first mill at Usal. Then he went to the Hawaiian Islands, in
1891, and became the overseer of a sugar plantation ; and he spent eighteen years there,
during part of that time superintending a cattle ranch, itself a part of an immense
sugar and rice plantation. Toward the end of his stay in Hawaii, he was shipping
clerk for an inter-island steamship company.

In 1904, Mr. Manning returned to California and Modesto and purchased a
ranch of thirty-three acres on McHenry Avenue, devoted to alfalfa, about a mile and
a half from town. He paid fifty-five dollars per acre for the land, or considerably less
than $2,000, and in 1913, less than ten years later, he sold the ranch for $12,000.
The same year he made a second trip to Hawaii ; and having purchased a tract of
land, he spent four years there in raising bananas and pineapples.

In 1917, Mr. Manning was back again in Modesto, and it did not take long for
him to buy a twelve-acre ranch in the Wood Colony, devoted to alfalfa ; and three
years later he disposed of this ranch and purchased a five-acre tract on Semple Avenue
in the town. Early in 1920 he opened a real estate office on J and Eleventh streets,
where he handles city and country property. In the fall of that year he laid out his
five acres as the Manning Addition to Modesto, and he is selling it off rapidly in town
lots. He believes in the fitness of men fer office, not in mere party endorsement of
them; and while pursuing his course as a man of business affairs, he uses such political
influence as he may have for the benefit of the entire community.

57



1388 HISTORY OF STANISLAUS COUNTY

During his residence in the Hawaiian Islands, Mr. Manning was married, on
January 9, 1891, to Miss Margretha Malzau, a native of Christiania, Norway; and
when the knot had been duly tied, the happy couple sped off on their honeymoon trip,
traveling in a two-wheel cart (at the time the best conveyance to be had in the district
of Kau) thirty miles to the Volcano House at Kilauea. Two children have blessed this
union, and both of them have done well in the world. Ralph is a mechanic in
Modesto, and Frances M. is employed in the Commercial Savings & Loan Bank in
Stockton. Mr. Manning, always popular among his associates, is a Mason, a member
of Stanislaus Lodge No. 206 of Modesto, and with his wife and daughter belongs to
the Eastern Star of the same city. The Sciots and Redmen, in addition, are as proud
to claim him one of their own as he is to be fraternally among them.

DAVID LEE REYNOLDS. —A business man of Hughson, whose interest in
the growing town led his fellow-citizens to reciprocate with a helpful interest in him,
is David Lee Reynolds, who was born in Sumner County, Tenn., on April 27, 1876.
His father was Nathaniel Reynolds, a native of Tennessee and a man interested in
both farming and the raising of stock; and he married Miss Lucy McMurtery, also
a native of that state.

David Reynolds went to the grammar schools in Sumner County, and when
fifteen years old started to work out on farms and in sawmills in his native state, and
so continued there until 1900. Whatever he did, he did willingly and thoroughly, and
in that way he prepared himself for the greater venture of a move to the Pacific West.
In 1900, he came out to California, and for a while, drawn to Stanislaus County
from the start, settled at Modesto. In 1906, after the earthquake and fire, he went
to San Francisco, where he took up teaming; and having continued active and success-
ful at that until 1909, he returned to Modesto. There he was so unfortunate as to
meet with an accident which caused him the loss of a foot ; and from this he suffered
so much that he was in the hospital, off and on, for about three years. This of itself
was a test of his better and enduring qualities ; but being of the sort who are bound
to win out, Mr. Reynolds stuck to his guns, and in 1912, or thereabouts, came to
Hughson to reside. For four years he worked for J. V. Date, making friends for his
employer as well as for himself; then purchasing Mr. Date's business, he now has
one of the best-conducted tobacco and pool-rooms in the count}'.

At Stockton, on April 7, 1909, Mr. Reynolds was married to Miss Lilly Rose,
a native of Fresno County, and the daughter of Lewis Rose, a farmer well known in
earlier days, and his good wife, who was Josephine Sanders in her maidenhood. Two
children have blessed the happy union: Margaret and Jane.

ARCHIE L. SWEENEY. — A worthy representative of an interesting family
hailing from the vicinity of Louisville, Ky., and associated with Missouri as pioneers,
is Archie L. Sweeney, who was born in Boone County, Mo., on November 13, 1867,
at Sturgeon, and is now a well-situated rancher, owning twenty choice acres on Sylvan
Avenue, and residing at 618 Fourteenth Street, Modesto. His great-grandfather was
the first man to have an iron cookstove in Missouri, and was also the first man in the
state to run a sawmill. This mill eventually made the ties that went into the early
Missouri railroads. His son was Archie Lee Sweeney, an attorney, and for years
justice of the peace at Sturgeon, who went into Texas with a Mr. Robinson and
obtained a large tract of land where the present city of El Paso stands. This land was
obtained under a Spanish grant, and now many of the heirs are attempting to regain
possession. Archie Lee Sweeney had a son, Lacy, who married Miss Nancy L.
Webster, and they became the parents of our subject.

The lad attended the public schools at Sturgeon, Mo., and then he went for a
year to a Methodist institution at Fayette. He continued his studies until he was
seventeen, and then entered upon an apprenticeship to the printing trade. Discerning,
however, that the typesetting machine would take the place of the human compositor,
he abandoned the printer's trade and took up harness making instead. A year at that
proved to him that he had not yet found just what he wanted, and then he learned
the blacksmith trade thoroughly and followed it.



HISTORY OF STANISLAUS COUNTY 1389

On November 22, 1889, Mr. Sweeney came to San Jose and opened a blacksmith
shop; and this smithy he had there for nine years. He then went to San Francisco
and worked for a Mr. Ralston, at the corner of Howard and Beale streets; and he
was busy at his trade at the time of the earthquake. Locating at Modesto on August
24, 1906, Mr. Sweeney bought the shop of John Richards at the corner of Ninth and
J streets ; and he had this blacksmith shop for about a month when he was burned out.
Then he bought the shop across the corner from Mr. Newland, and maintained a
forge there for two and a half years; and when he sold out he took a post with the
city water works of Modesto as superintendent under W. E. Davis, and he remained in
that capacity until about November, 1919.

In the latter year, Mr. Sweeney purchased twenty acres on Sylvan Avenue, which
he is setting outto Thompson Seedless grapes; and having already purchased his home
at 618 Fourteenth Street, he finds himself in very comfortable circumstances. He
served as a deputy sheriff under Robert Dallas, and so has been able, while attending
to material interests, to contribute toward law and order. He is a Republican.

At San Francisco, in 1902, Mr. Sweeney was married to Miss Florence Wallace,
a native of Hanover, Germany, and the daughter of Charles and Ann Wallace. Her
father was a native of London, who came to Germany when he was a young man,
and there established himself as a prosperous merchant; and when his daughter grew
to maturity, she crossed the ocean and continent to California, and lived at the corner
of Sutter and Laguna streets in San Francisco, with an uncle, and studied at the high
school in Oakland. Mr. and Mrs. Sweeney have two children — Henrietta Evelyn
and Melvin J. Sweeney. Mr. Sweeney is a member of the Knights of Pythias and
the Modern Woodmen, of Modesto, and he has been an officer in both lodges.

EDWARD MEINECKE.— The descendant of a California pioneer, and him-
self a native son, Edward Meinecke can look back with pride and gratitude on the
work of his forebears, whose work had its part in the development of this progressive
section of California. He was born in Stockton, San Joaquin County, December 31,
1862, the son of Frederick and Sophia (Hayssen) Meinecke. The father was a
native of Hanover, Germany, born April 28, 1823. His father, Frederick Meinecke,
was married to Margaret Allmeras, and he served as a first lieutenant in the Prussian
army at the Battle of Waterloo; he died at the age of forty-eight, while his widow
lived to be ninety years old.

In 1848, when twenty-five years old, Frederick Meinecke, our subject's father,
came to Wisconsin, and in 1849, in a company of sixty-five, crossed the plains, arriv-
ing at Hangtown, now Placerville, in October of that year. He mined on the north
branch of the Calaveras and with his partner discovered O'Neal's bar and took out
much gold, but some of this was spent in prospecting for better diggings, which they
failed to find. In 1850 he located on the Calaveras River near Stockton and engaged
in freighting from that city to the camps in the mountains. In 1852 he returned
East via Nicaragua and in Wisconsin bought 150 milk cows, paying from fourteen
to eighteen dollars apiece for them, and the next year drove them across the plains,
wintering at Salt Lake City, arriving in California the following spring, where he
sold most of the cows at from $100 to $150 each. After a short stay at Liberty, he
went to Georgetown, Eldorado County, where he ran a meat market, and subsequently
at Murphy, Calaveras County, where he engaged in dairying until 1858, when he
returned to Germany. On October 15 of that year he was married to Miss Sophia
Hayssen, born in Oldenburg, a daughter of Heyo and Catherine (Libben) Hayssen,
farmer folk. Returning to California with his bride, he operated the ferry across
the Stanislaus River ten miles north of what is now Modesto, and known as the
Meinecke & Taylor ferry. He operated it for three years, when he purchased the old
Meinecke ranch, which eventually comprised 800 acres in Stanislaus County, six miles
south of Oakdale. Engaging extensively in ranching, he made this his home until
February 18, 1907, when he passed away. He was a member of Morning Star Lodge,
F. & A. M., Stockton, and Modesto Chapter, R. A. M.

Growing up on the home ranch, Edward Meinecke attended the Rinehart school,
Stanislaus County, now called the New Hope school, and after finishing the course



1390 HISTORY OF STANISLAUS COUNTY

here, he supplemented his education with a course at the Stockton Business College.
From his earliest years he had always helped his father in the manifold duties con-
nected with operating a great acreage like this, and being the only son, naturally much
of the responsibility devolved upon him. After his father's death, in 1907, he con-
tinued to run the ranch with splendid results until January, 1919, when the place was
sold. Mr. Meinecke then purchased a home on McHenry Road, about one-half mile
north of town, and here he has since made his home with his mother and sisters,
Katie, Meta and Sophia. Although eighty-nine years of age, the mother is still hale,
hearty and active, and she can look back on residence of sixty-five years in this valley,
since she came here as a bride — years fraught with many interesting memories.

HOWARD HENRY MORSE.— A wide-awake, conscientious business man
with executive ability, Howard H. Morse gives satisfaction to many as the accom-
modating manager of the Ward Lumber Company at Hughson. He was born in
Iowa, at Marion, in Linn County, on September 17, 1892, the son of E. B. and Mary
Elizabeth (Gray) Morse. His father carried on general farming and stock raising,
and when our subject was four years old, he located in Santa Ana, Cal., in 1898, and
engaged in carpenter work. He came to Hughson in 1910, and died on September 15,
1917, highly esteemed by those who had been privileged to know him, and survived
by his devoted wife, with whom our subject now makes his home.

Howard H. Morse attended the grammar school at Santa Ana, and when seven-
teen years of age, started out into the world for himself. In 1910, he came to Stanis-
laus County and took a position with the Tuolumne Lumber Company at Hughson.
In August, 1919, he became manager of the yard, and in May, 1920, the Tuolumne
Lumber Company was dissolved, and the Ward Lumber Company was organized.
Throughout this change, Mr. Morse kept his place — a fact which speaks as well for
the good sense of the new lumber merchants as for the fidelity and experience of their
employee. He finds entire satisfaction in the service of the new concern, and this
means that he will also find his highest pleasure in advancing their best interests by
extending as widely and as rapidly as possible their growing trade. He gives all of
his attention to the lumber trade, where he handles every variety of lumber and other
building material, and which adequately serves the entire Hughson district.

A Republican in national politics, Mr. Morse is a member of the Hughson lodge
Modern Woodmen of America, and Modesto lodge, Fraternal Brotherhood.

GEORGE P. WEICHERT.— One of the most successful and honored mer-
chants and farmers in his section of the county, is George P. Weichert, who was born
at Pittsburgh, Pa., July 27, 1857, the son of Phil J. and Cecelia (Weigley) Weichert.
His father was a blacksmith and a mechanic who had a shop in Pittsburgh. When
he was ten years old his parents moved to Janesville, Wis., where they lived for one
and a half years, then they went to Iowa in 1869, to Boone County; here his father
followed the blacksmith trade. When only twelve years old, George began making
his own way, attending public school winters and working summers. On leaving his
home he worked on a farm for the next nine years. In 1878, accompanied by his
father and family, he went to Smith Center, Smith County, Kans., and it was in this
county that he and his father took up homesteads and began farming.



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 157 of 177)