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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 75 of 177)
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but the spirit of that day was one of independence and the boys of the farms were early
striking out to make their own fortunes. Accordingly, he began farming at Hudleson,
on the Tuolumne River, at an early age, working first for wages. He worked on one
of the first combined harvesters in the county, and has been employed by all the Whit-
mores, working for many months for Daniel Whitmore on his great grain ranch at
Ceres. In 1876 he ran the Modesto ferry, the cash income amounting to $100 per day.

Always having the most unbounded faith in the future of Stanislaus County. Mr.
Kane saved his money and invested in farm lands. He owned ten acres in Seymour
Park, for which he paid $160 an acre. This he improved and set to figs, and in 1918
sold it for $4,500. It is interesting to note that within the next two vears it was
again sold, this time for $9,000. He also owns valuable property in Oakdale and
in the Crows Landing district.

Mr. Kane chose for his wife a native daughter of Stanislaus County, Mrs. Made-
line (Wilson) Medlin, born in Modesto. Their marriage was celebrated at Ceres
in 1906. By a former marriage Mrs. Kane had three children: Ralph, of Modesto;
Alice. Mrs. Phoenix, also of Modesto; Ella, wife of Wm. McQuiry of Ceres, vice-
president of the Mail Carriers' Union of Stanislaus County.

Keenly interested in all that pertains to the well-being of his own community,
Mr. Kane has always taken an active part in civic and social affairs, as well as in
business. He is a member of the Ceres Board of Trade and has taken an active
part in all its developmental plans. For many years he has been a member of the
Ceres cemetery committee. He has lived in Ceres from its earliest days, the house
he lives in being the third house to be erected here. He has seen the time when sixteen-
horse teams with three wagons were strung out for almost two miles awaiting their
turn to unload at the Ceres warehouse and the teams came from Snelling and La
Grange. This was the only rail center hereabouts. During recent years Mr. Kane has
retired from active commercial enterprises, but he is none the less prominent in local
affairs, and is always ready to give of his time and money for the general welfare.

VALENTINE B. DALE.— Although Valentine B. Dale, honored pioneer of
Salida, has passed the milestone of his eighty-fifth year, his keenness of perception and
the clearness of an unusually excellent mentality is unimpaired. A successful rancher
and business man, he is a Southerner by birth and lineage, and was born in the state
of Georgia, May 7, 1836. His father, John Messer Dale, a native of South Carolina,
was married in Georgia to Miss Jane Bailey, and Valentine B. was reared on his
father's Southern plantation and has always been a farmer and trader, dealing in
horses, mules and livestock, of which he is a most excellent judge and has the reputa-
tion of having sold more horses and mules than any other man in Stanislaus County,
shipping them into the county in carload lots. During the Civil War he enlisted on
the Confederate side, served under General Cobb for four years, and had the misfor-
tune to lose his left forearm by a musket ball in the last Wilderness fight. His service
was all in Virginia and he saw much hard fighting. He was married in 1858 to Miss
Susan Hendon, a native of Georgia, and they became the parents of eleven children :



640 HISTORY OF STANISLAUS COUNTY

Alice married L. A. Kennedy, moved to the state of Washington and died, leaving
seven children ; Will is a rancher near Modesto, and is the father of one son ; Cordelia
is the wife of B. T. Elmore of Modesto, and the mother of three children ; John is
deceased ; Milton is a rancher near Porterville, Cal. ; Emma is the wife of George T.
Dockery and resides in Fresno County and has a son and a daughter; Nina is the
widow of Walter S. Graham: Susie is the wife of Ora Hayward, the bookkeeper and
general manager of the Star Stage Company at Fresno, Cal., and has one daughter;
Floyd C. is associated with his father in the Palm Service Station, and also the Salida
Garage at Salida, and has one son. Two children died in early childhood.

After the war, Mr. Dale returned to his family and home near Carrollton, Ga.,
and then moved to Texas, but soon returned to his native state. Leaving his wife
and children in Georgia, he came to California in 1869 and bought out a squatter's
claim near Salida. He also homesteaded 160 acres, and in the fall of 1869 went back
to Georgia and brought his family to California. He proved up on his homestead,
but owing to legal complications because of a Spanish grant and a railroad grant, he,
in common with other settlers, was in court many times before the title was made good.
Stockton, twentv-three miles distant, was the trading place, grain de->ot and market,
and Mr. Dale had a rich pioneer experience in those early days. He lived on one
nlace for fiftv years, farmed, dealt in horses, and became known as a successful man.
Mr. Dale laid out three school districts in Stanislaus Countv — the Stanislaus, the
Prescott and the Wood Colonv — and he served as a trustee, for many years, of the
former district. His interests now are the Palm Service Station, conveniently located
in Salida at the crossing of the State Highway with the Salida and Oakdale Road, the
up-to-date Salida Garage, and a beautiful bungalow residence, both of which are
located near the corner where the service station stands, and all of which he purchased
from his nredece«or, W. D. Toomes.

In his political views, Mr. Dale is a Democrat in national issues, but is liberal
and considers the principles of government and the candidate's qualifications for office
in castin" his vote for the individual. He is a man with the courage of his convic-
tions, is bright and interesting, and despite his age, attends to business every day. He
has always practiced the golden rule during his Ion? and dignified life, is genial and
ap-iroachable. a good friend and neighbor, and numbers among his warm friends the
best people of the community. Mrs. Dale died in January, 1921, aged seventy-eight.

CHAS. H. KIRBY.— Hale and hearty at the age of seventy-two Charles H.
Kirby, a pioneer of California of 1865 and a splendid type of American citizen, is still
following his trade of harness making with all the activity and zest of a man many
years his junior. The son of General Chas. H. and Katherine (King) Kirby, natives of
Glasgow, Scotland, he was born on April 24, 1848, at Carlton, La., near New Orleans,
the father being a military man, who served under Gen. Zachary Taylor in the
Mexican War, 1846 to 1848. He was a planter and on breaking out of the Civil War
he went out as major of the Second Louisiana Infantry Regiment, Confederate Army,
and rose to the rank of general. At the siege of Richmond, he received wounds from
which he died some months later. His widow survived him many years and died in
Louisiana. Of the seven children our subject is the youngest. Two of his brothers
were also in the war. Chas. H. Kirby was educated in the common school at his birth-
place. In 1861, when thirteen years of age, he was drafted into the Confederate Army
serving in Company B, Second Louisiana Cavalry, as bugler. He was slightly wounded
at the Battle of Bull Run and also at Chattanooga, while at the siege of Yicksbur



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 75 of 177)