Among the well-known and representative orange groves in the Riverside colony tract is the five acres owned by the above-named gentleman. This grove is located on the west side of Cypress Avenue, north of Bandini Avenue, about one mile south of the business center of Riverside. About four acres of his land is in oranges, seedling and Washington Navel trees twelve years of age, and other budded trees of Washington Navel, Mediterranean Sweet and St. Michael varieties, varying in age from one to six years. He has one acre in vineyard, which produced in 1888 over $200 worth of fruit. Mr. Chapman is a thorough horticulturist, and is reaping a rich reward for his labor. It is doubtful whether any finer oranges are produced in the colony than those grown upon his place. He purchased the land in 1887, since which time he has erected a substantial residence of attractive appearance, and also suitable outbuildings. He has one of the most desirable homes in his section.
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The subject of this sketch was born in Tolland County, Connecticut, in 1836. His parents, Simon C. and Jerusha (McKnight) Chapman, were also natives of that State. He was reared and schooled in his native place until eighteen years of age, and then went to Georgia, and was there engaged in mercantile life for the next four years, after which he resided in New York until 1861. In that year he located in Whiteside County, Illinois, where he established himself in mercantile business. The war of the Rebellion called him to the service of his country, and in 1862 he enlisted in the Ninety-third Illinois Volunteer Infantry as a private. His close attention to military duties insured his promotion to Corporal and then Sergeant. He served in the Western army under Generals Sherman and McPherson until wounded at the battle of Champion Hill. His wounds necessitated his discharge and closed his military career. He then returned to his home in Connecticut and engaged in business. In 1864 he was elected to the Legislature from Ellington Township, and took a leading part in the legislation of his State and in the support of war measures.
In 1865 Mr. Chapman moved to Pittsburg, Pennsylvania, where for more than twenty years he was the trusted general agent of the Etna Life Insurance Company, of Hartford, Connecticut. He successfully conducted the business of that company until 1887, when he moved to his present home in Riverside. He is a progressive citizen and promptly identified himself with the best elements of the community in which he resides. In political matters he is a Republican. He has for years been a member of and a deacon in the Congregational Church. He is a member of Patterson Post, No. 88, G. A. R., of Allegheny City, Pennsylvania.
Mr. Chapman was united in marriage with Miss Carrie Olmsted, of Hartford, Connecticut. The names of their children are: Louise C., Emily S., Maud M., Anna M. O. and Mildred.