A broad stretch of waste at San Francisco’s door, which was spanned by an almost impassable road and a set of rails twenty years ago, is now one of the most highly developed and thickly populated parts of San Mateo County, a district of homes, boulevards, large industrial plants and towns. This is the first township of San Mateo County.
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At present the first township is represented on the Board of Supervisors by James T. Casey, a man who was born and raised in this district and who has passed through, with it, all its successive stages of development.
Born on a ranch near Colma in 1861, “Jim” Casey picked up his education while earning a livelihood. He fought stubbornly to get ahead. Progress for Mr. Casey was slow but certain.. His pluck and perseverance, coupled with an unshakable faith in the first township, finally earned their reward; and we find “Jim” the proprietor of two butcher shops and owning many other interests in this prospering district, which he had watched grow from a few scattered ranch houses.
In 1908 Mr. Casey was elected Supervisor of this district. When he took office there were nothing but wooden bridges in the township and the roads were notorious through California. Casey’s path was again strewn with obstacles, but he courageously launched his campaign of road construction. Every wooden bridge has been replaced with concrete or iron culverts. The State Highway, the Ocean Boulevard, the Junipero Serra Boulevard and many miles of laterals and cross streets have been constructed and plans are under way for still greater improvements. During his administration, also, five lighting districts were formed–at Colma, San Bruno, Lomita Park, Easton and Salada Beach.
Mr. Casey led the fight to have the State Highway built over its present route, the most direct way to peninsula points. He was also one of the leading spirits in the building of ocean boulevards, of which the twenty-two miles between Colma and Montara are in his township.
Mr. Casey is engaged in the insurance and real estate business, although his duties as Supervisor of such a large township take most of his time, as he is chairman of the County Hospital and Supplies committees as well as a member of all the committees of the Board.
He is a director of the Redwood City Commercial Bank and of the San Mateo Savings and Loan Company, and a charter member of the Mission Parlor of Native Sons.