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Biography of Samuel C. Pine

Samuel C. Pine, for over thirty years has been a resident, and identified with the varied interests, of San Bernardino County. He is now engaged in general farming operations upon 160 acres of productive land located in Chino Township, Chino school district, four miles south and east of Chino. In 1867 Mr. Pine purchased a squatter’s claim to this land, which was then in its wild and un-cultivated state. He spent years in litigation with grant claimants, but finally secured his Government patent. The first year of his occupancy he devoted his attention to stock-growing, but later commenced a system of general farming that has been successful and remunerative. He has a vineyard of ten acres of raisin grapes of the Muscat variety; also several varieties of table grapes; ten acres of orchard which produces a fine variety of peaches, apples, plums, apricots, pears, figs, prunes, nectarines, etc. His soil and climate seem well adapted to the successful growing of deciduous fruits. The remainder of his lands is devoted to hay, grain and stock. Of the latter he raises good grade stock of cattle and Norman draft horses. He’ is a successful farmer and an illustration of what energy and enterprise, combined with sound sense and business habits will do when applied to the lands of Rincon Valley. Mr. Pine can well be styled a pioneer of San Bernardino County, and a brief review of his life is of interest. He dates his birth in St. Lawrence County, New York, July 30, 1825. His great-grandfather, Joseph Pine, was a native of Italy who immigrated to the Massachusetts colonies before...

Biography of Anton Diebolt, Jr.

Anton Diebolt, Jr., cashier of the Piqua State Bank in Woodson County, is one of the younger bankers of Kansas and had studied and practiced banking with a varied experience in different institutions ever since reaching manhood. He is a native of Kansas and represents a family that have had an important share in business and financial circles. He was born in Atchison County, Kansas, October 10, 1885, a son of Anton Diebolt, Sr., and a grandson of Joseph Diebolt. The Diebolt family in the earlier generations lived in the Province of Alsace, on the border between the French and German empires, and alternately a French and then a German possession. Joseph Diebolt was born in Alsace when it was part of France, and in his earlier life he saw active service in the regular French army. In 1862 he came to America, locating in Brown County, Kansas, and lived the life of a pioneer farmer there until his death. Anton Diebolt, Sr., was born in 1832, in Alsace, France, and was a boy of sixteen when he left his native land in 1848 and immigrated to the United States. He landed at New Orleans, and spent twelve years in that southern city, having a varied experience in different lines of business. For two years he lived at Cincinnati, Ohio, and then removed to Mendota, Illinois, and engaged in farming in the rich agricultural district surrounding that town. In 1881 he brought his family to Kansas, settling in Atchison County on a farm, and from there in 1891 removed to Olpe in Lyon County. He continued farming there, but...

Biographical Sketch of Joseph H. Kelly

Joseph H. Kelly, of Mission District, San Bernardino County, is known far and wide as the most extensive dealer and trainer of horses in the county. He has a fine ranch of 100 acres, on which he has recently built a neat and comfortable residence. For the past ten years he has given his entire attention to horses, and at present has about fifty head, some of them as well bred as any in the State. Last spring he sold a pair of trotters for $6,000. Mr. Kelly is a native of Quincy, Illinois, and came to California in 1861. In the spring of 1862 he went to Holcomb Valley, where he followed mining and teaming for a number of years. Fourteen years ago he was married, and bought the ranch on which he at present...

Biography of F. Garner

F. Garner, residing on Mount Vernon Avenue, San Bernardino, was born near Quincy, Illinois, March 5, 1835. His parents were George and Elizabeth Garner. His father moved to Nauvoo, Illinois, at an early day, and remained there one year when he crossed the plains to Utah, where he spent one winter. Frank was fifteen years of age when they left the Missouri river, and he drove an ox team all the way to California. While crossing the Missouri river on a ferry-boat, the team which he afterward drove became frightened and jumped off the boat into the water, and swam across safely with the yoke on. They left St. Joe with a train of sixty wagons in the spring of 1850, but many died on the way of cholera. The train being so long they divided it into six divisions of ten wagons each, and took turns leading. The ten wagons that led one day fell behind the next. George Garner was captain of ten wagons, and one day he was to lead he told his men to follow, and do hard driving, and by that means they would leave the rest behind, which they did, and got to the end of the journey just two weeks in advance of the rest. They lost two of their number by cholera and had some trouble with the Indians. Mr. Garner had a family of eight children. For a while after their arrival they lived in the fort at San Bernardino, and then Mr. Garner took up Government land, which he farmed fifteen years. He then purchased 100 acres on Base...

Biography of Joseph Hancock

Joseph Hancock, a rancher near San Bernardino, was born near Cleveland, Ohio, in 1822, and is the son of Solomon and Alta (Adams) Hancock, natives of Massachusetts and Vermont respectively. His father was born in 1793, and his mother in 1795, and were of English descent. The great-grandfather of the subject of this sketch was one of the signers of the Declaration of Independence.1 His paternal great-grandmother was the daughter of General Ward. Solomon Hancock was a frontiersman in the Buckeye State, a farmer, but in his early days spent much time in hunting deer and wild turkey, with which the country abounded. His father, Thomas Hancock, entered the Revolutionary War at the age of fourteen years. When the subject of this sketch was a lad of ten years his father moved to Clay County, Missouri, where he lived for three years. There they had some pretty “tough times.” Mr. Hancock gave his shoes to another boy while he rode on the back of an ox to get along. This was in 1833. Four years later his father moved with his family to Adams County, Illinois, where he lived for three years, and then moved to Hancock County, Illinois, and remained there nine years. In 1846 he left Illinois for Council Bluffs, Iowa, where he lived until 1851, when he set out for the Utah country. While crossing the Missouri, Mr. Hancock and his wife and two children narrowly escaped drowning. He had just been assisting to “ferry across” several families successfully, but in crossing this time a large tree came floating down stream. Captain Day insisted on trying...

Biography of Hon. William Payne

Farmers who have been elected to positions of trust and honor are not by any means few in America, but it is the exception that the tiller of the soil continues to be such long after he has won success in any sphere outside his regular calling. The allurements of city life in the great majority of cases quickly overcome the inborn love of nature unadorned and the farmer is known by another name. Honorable William Payne has been one of the few. After terms of service in county offices and through twelve years in which he held membership in the Illinois House of Representatives and Senate he remained a farmer. His broad acres in Zuma Township, Rock Island County, he still called home, and there he continued to reside and plant and cultivate and reap and raise live stock till he felt it time to retire from active business and from office. Then he exchanged his farm for city property and became a resident of Rock Island. Mr. Payne was born March 8, 1841, at what is now known as Pleasant Valley, Scott County, Iowa, his parents being Jeremiah and Letitia (Orr) Payne. They located in Scott County in 1837, the father being a native of New York State, and the mother a native of Ohio. The son received his education in the public schools near his home, and in the Winters of 1859. 1860 attended school at Quincy College, and in 1860 taught school in Posey County, Indiana, and Adams County, Illinois. At the outbreak of the Civil war he joined the Thirteenth Illinois Infantry, serving in...

Biography of Joseph F. Tobias

Joseph F. Tobias has for many years been closely identified with banking in Ellsworth County and is now cashier of the Wilson State Bank. The Wilson State Bank was established under a state charter in 1886 by B. S. and Myron P. Westfall. Its original capital stock was $35,000 and the first officers were: E. E. Parks, president; M. P. Westfall, vice president, and B. S. Westfall, cashier. Its record of thirty years had been a splendid one, reflecting good management and prosperity to its stockholders and patrons. Today the bank had a capital of $40,000, surplus and undivided profits of $90,000, while the deposits, the best index of its popularity, aggregate about $600,000. The list of officials are: A. D. Jellison, of Junction City, Kansas, president; Charles W. Fielder, vice president and acting president; E. D. Schermerhorn, vice president; J. F. Tobias, cashier; and F. S. Percival and C. R. Jellison, assistant cashiers. The Tobias family were early settlers in Ellsworth County, Kansas, and were established in the very pioneer times on the northwestern frontier in Minnesota. Joseph F. Tobias was born in Minnesota, at the Town of Elysian, November 18, 1878. He is of an old Bohemian family. His great-grandfather, Winslow Tobias, was born at Velin, Bohemia, in 1783. He was a shoemaker by trade. One day he came into the house after hoeing potatoes in the garden and dropped dead. His death occurred at Zerhernse, Bohemia, in 1852. His wife, Catherine, was born also in 1783, at Velin, Bohemia, and she died at Wilson, Kansas, in 1880, when ninety-seven years of age. The only child of...

Biography of Major James Bruce

MAJOR JAMES BRUCE. – Major Bruce is one of our citizens who needs no introduction to the people of the Northwest; since he is known personally, not only to all the old pioneers, but to most of the second generation of the toilers of Oregon. He was born November 3, 1827, in Harrison county, Indiana, and at the age of ten moved with his parents to Quincy, Illinois. At twenty he began a border career, going to Texas, making many excursions in that then unsettled region, and at Cross Timbers joined Major Johnson’s rangers. He accompanied these troopers upon their expeditions to punish marauders, or to recover the stock which were perpetually stampeded and run off by the Indians. In one of these ventures he was engaged with his company in a fight with three hundred of the savages, whose rapid movements, impetuous charges, and ability to suddenly concentrate, or to miraculously disappear and reappear, seemed to multiply their number to about one thousand. Here the Major first saw their maneuvers and astonishing feats, such as riding concealed on one side of their horses. In 1849 he returned to his home in Illinois, and in the spring of 1850 was ready to go to the mines of California, – a trip even more eventful than that to Texas. He performed the long journey in the summer, using ox-teams as the means of travel, and having as his companion George Collins. Making but a short stoppage in the old mines of California, he urged his way to the northern part of that state to the Shasta or Redding diggings, where...

Biography of George Wagner

George Wagner, whose home is near Beloit in Mitchell County, is one of the men who bore the heat and burden of the day in introducing civilization to this section, and when the many hardships and vicissitudes encountered by him and his fellows are recalled it seems that no reward in comfort and circumstances could be too great for his declining years. Mr. Wagner is one of the few early settlers who still retain and reside on their first homestead. On coming to Kansas Mr. Wagner migrated from Adams County, Illinois, spent a short time at Selina, where he arrived in December, 1869, but in the following year started for Asherville Township in Mitchell County. Here he took up the homestead which he now owned and occupies. It would be a long story to recount all the hardships that he and his brave wife endured, all the troubles of drought, grasshopper plagues, hard times, poor markets, bad roads which beset and hampered him and the other early settlers. Mr. Wagner was one of those who endured through it all and finally came to their reward. Thus in order to retain his claim and yet provide a home for his wife and children Mr. Wagner in the early days would work for wages of 25 cents a day and would accept his pay in any commodity which he could use. Money was not as plentiful in Kansas then as it is now. However, he can take a pleasing retrospect over those early years from the point of view of his comfortable present. Mr. Wagner had 160 acres of fine bottom...

Biography of Abel E. Eaton

ABEL E. EATON. – The extensive reputation and wide influence of Mr. Eaton bespeak for him a candid notice in any work touching upon the lives of our responsible men. The seventh son in a family of eleven children, he was born May 30, 1834, at Conway, New Hampshire. The father, Simeon Eaton, a lawyer from Maine, and the mother from the same state, whose maiden name was Bessie Paine, made their home upon a farm. During the first eight years of his life, the boy Abel found opportunity for but seven weeks’ schooling. This was his annual stipend of educational advantages until his eighteenth year, when he secured eleven weeks in the South Conway Seminary. Nevertheless, having an active New England brain, he eagerly imbibed ideas and information from all sources, utilizing the evening hours by the torchlights and fireplace to peruse books. At the age of twenty, he obtained the consent of his parents to go to Ohio, and in this then somewhat remote region experienced the many adventures, and tried the numerous shifts and turns of the youth away from home, realizing his greatest profit in a business way form a pair of calves purchased with money that he had hoarded as a boy from the proceeds of his bean patch. In 1854 he penetrated the West as far as Huntsville, Indiana, and although having no literary effects, except a family dictionary purchased some time before with a bushel of his white beans, he was able to secure a school and to teach it successfully, although heretofore regarded as one of those practically unmanageable schools of...
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