JOURNALISM IN CALIFORNIA
by John P. Young
Pacific Coast and Exposition
CHRONICLE PUBLISHING COMPANY
San Francisco, California, 1915
Thank you to Beth Humphrey for
transcribing and submitting this material.
John Hammon Crabbe (page 252)
Nowhere, perhaps, can one crowd so much varied
experience into so short a period as in the newspaper “game.” Becoming
familiar, as one does, with every walk of life, seeing men with all their
foibles and hidden characteristics bared to the gaze—no wonder such a profession
makes for worldly wisdom. And by virtue of this wisdom does it generally
make for success in another sphere later on.
John Hammond Crabbe, attorney at law, rounded
out his education by a turn in the newspaper business. For 14 months
he was city editor of the Chico Daily Enterprise and for 8 months more
a reporter on the Woodland Mail; he still is a newspaperman in a way, for
since 1905 he has held credentials of the Northern Press Syndicate.
Born October 14, 1880, at Charlottetown, Prince
Edward Island, Mr. Crabbbe is the son of William and Lavinia Emily (Prowse)
Crabbe. In 1884 he came with his parents to California and later
attended school at Nimshew, Butte County. Subsequently the family
removed to a place on Butte Creek and Mr. Crabbe was obliged to ride horseback
about seven miles over two mountain ranges to West Branch school in Big
Chico Canyon. Moving again in 1896 to Chico, Mr. Crabbe was graduated
from the grammar schools in 1900 and entered the Chico State Normal, finishing
in January 1905. To pay his own way, he worked in the sawmills during
vacation. He was very active during his Normal course. He was
captain of the football, baseball and basketball teams; president of the
associated student body and of the Ilakawinn Debating Society; delegate
to the Sacramento Valley Interscholastic Athletic League; editor of the
Normal Record and for a year Normal reporter on the Chico Enterprise.
Also during four years, Mr. Crabbe was a member
fo Company A, Second Regiment Infantry, National Guard of California, and
as such served a month in Oakland and San Francisco following the 1906
fire. He served seven years with the Chico Volunteer Fire Department
and for a year was its foreman, as well as member of the hose team that
held the State record for racing. He received a certificate of exemption
from engine company No. 1.
In March 1907, after two years as a newspaperman,
Mr. Crabbe came to San Francisco and took a course in stenography from
the San Francisco Business College. After several months in mercantile
establishments he was employed, in February 1908, as stenographer and law
clerk for John O’Gara, then assistant district attorney. He studied
law at odd moments and in the evenings and was admitted to the bar May
13, 1910, in the District Court of Appeal in San Francisco. He was
admitted to the U.S. District and Circuit Courts May 14, 1910. Until
January 1912, he practiced and at the same time acted as clerk for leading
lawyers of the city. He then opened offices for himself at 947 Pacific
Mr. Crabbe confines himself largely to civil
practice, particularly probate and contract law. He has been retained
in several cases of note; within five years after beginning practice
he was retained by one side or the other in personal injury damages suits
aggregating more than $100,000. He was one of the two attorneys who
represented Lavinia Crabbe, as administratrix of the estate of William
R. Crabbe, in a damage suit against the Mammoth Channel Gold Mining Company,
in which a Butte County jury awarded a unanimous verdict of $20,000, the
largest personal injury damages ever given in the County. The case
was the first prosecuted under the Workman’s Compensation law.
Another hard-fought case in which Mr. Crabbe
was employed was that involving the competency of Mrs. Louella Noonan Stapleton.
Mr. Carbbe and his associates, after an eight-day jury trial in San Francisco,
succeeded in restoring to competency their client, who owned property worth
about $100,000. He is also one of the attorneys in an important will
contest pending in Buchanan County, Missouri, and in a similar action pending
before the Superior Court of San Diego County, California.
Mr. Crabbe has traveled extensively, professionally
and for pleasure. He is prominent in the Masons, belonging to King
Solomon’s Lodge No. 260, F. & A. M.; California Commandery No. 1, K.
T.; and Islam Temple of Shiners; he holds membership also in the San Francisco
Bar Association, California State Automobile Association, American Automobile
Association, Mentor Association and the Betsy Ross Memorial Association
of Philadelphia. He is a lover of the best in literature, art and
music and enjoys motoring as a relaxation. He was married in
San Francisco in 1908 to Mary Freeman Armstrong.
George E. Crothers (page 254)
So replete has been the career of George Crothers,
Judge of the Superior Court of San Francisco, with those matters considered
as really worth while, that to do justice to a narration of them would
require a volume. And even then the half would not be told.
Born May 27, 1870, at Wapello, Iowa,
he came with his parents to San Jose, California, when he was 13 years
old and attended the public schools of the latter place. He entered
Leland Stanford Junior University upon its original opening day and received
the degree of A> B. in 1895 in the departments of history and political
science with its “pioneer” class and the A. M. degree in 1896 in its law
In 1896 he was admitted to practice
law in the State and Federal courts. He enjoyed a flourishing practice
in partnership with his brother, T. G. Crothers, until his appointment
without solicitation to the Superior bench August 12, 1913.
Judge Crothers, before this, was one of the
three attorneys of records for the executors and trustees in the celebrated
litigation over the trustees in the celebrated litigation over the trust
and properties of the estate of the late Senator James G. Fair from 1899
to 1902 and had personal charge of the forgery branch of the litigation.
Under commission from Mrs. Leland Stanford,
Judge Crothers and his brother drafted the new section of the State Constitution
relative to Stanford University, besides several legislative acts and amendments
to the University charter, and prepared re-conveyances of the entire endowment
of the institution under the new terms and pursuant to the constitution
amendment. These and other steps were to remedy defects in the form
of the endowment grants and in the terms of the trusts constitution the
charter of the University, some of which, according to a subsequent Supreme
Court decision, would have been fatally defective to the title of the University
and its great endowment.
To forestall litigation after Mrs. Stanford’s
death, Judge Crothers and his brother in 1903 drafted and secured the passage
of an act similar to the McEnerney Act, pursuant to which his brother brought
suit on behalf of the University trustees against Mrs. Stanford and all
the world to establish the validity of the University titles and the terms,
validity and legal effect of the University trust conditions. The
judgment in this special proceeding is now the final authority governing
the actions of the University trustees and its management.
During the closing years of Mrs. Stanford’s
life Judge Crothers administered, as sole trustee, a trust involving about
$6,000,000, and conveyed it to the University at her death without there
having been one word of public comment to excite litigation. This
saved to the University between $2,000,000 and $3,000,000, owing to the
law preventing the giving of more than a third of an estate for charitable
or educational purposes by will. It likewise made a legal contest
futile. And although he had acted as attorney for the University
Trustees in the settlement of the estate, he asked only the same consideration
for his work and responsibility in both the special trust and the estate
as was shown each of the other two attorney in the matter of the estate
alone, ignoring the large fees allowed him by the legal Code, which were
the same as those allowed executors.
One of the important amendments to the University
charter, validated by Mr. Crothers’ work, was one limiting the term of
office of trustees therafter appointed or elected to ten years. He
and Whitelaw Reid were appointed trustees by Mrs. Stanford October 3, 1902,
and were the first to serve ten-year terms under this provision.
Judge Crothers was the fist graduate to be selected as a trustee.
He also inaugurated a plan wereby the Alumni Advisory Board will hereafter
nominate a succession of graduates of the University as trustees, Judge
Crothers is the only graduate of Stanford to be selected twice as president
of the alumni association.
Judge Crothers’ educational activities have
covered an unusually wide field. He has been vice-president of the
Association of American Universities, is chairman of the Board of Trustees
of the San Francisco State Normal School, and trustee of the Stanford Kindergarten
Trust, which maintains five kindergartens in San Francisco, and of the
Stanford Union. He is a member of various societies and organizations
of national scope.
His endorsement for re-election in 1914 to
the Superior bench by the San Francisco Bar Association was by the highest
vote given any candidate.
Allen Allsopp Curtis (page 255)
Boys and Girls of today little realize, when
they trudge from their homes a block or two to a convenient schoolhouse,
what it meant to their fathers and grandfathers half a century and more
ago to acquire an education. Not then, as now, was the schoolhouse
just around the corner. Oftentimes it was many weary miles away;
and the farmer lad who sought book learning in the forties and fifties
of the last century must needs have within him a steadfast determination
to better his lot.
The character of Allen Allsopp Curtis needs
no better introduction than the statement that while he was obtaining his
early education he walked to school three miles, then walked home again
and for one year walked five miles each way. This statement explains
the whole of Mr. Curtis’ subsequent career.
Allen A. Curtis was not only mining pioneer
in Nevada and a redwood lumber pioneer in California. He was born
November 1, 1838, near Belleville, Essex County, New Jersey. His
father, was Melville Curtis, a native of Newton, Lower Falls, Massachusetts,
and one of nine brothers, all of them paper manufacturers.
Mr. Cutis’ mother born of English parents at Quebec, Canada, her father
being Commissary General and a prominent landowner. She was a direct
descendant of the Morris brothers of Revolutionary war fame, one of them,
Gouverneur Morris, casting his lot with the Colonies while the other remained
loyal to King George.
In September 1859, Mr. Curtis came to California
by way of the Isthmus. Making his way to Sacramento he was clerk
in a hardware store there until March 1865, when he went to Austin, Nevada,
to take up silver mining. Nevada in those days was far different than the
Nevada of today and it was only her hardiest of pioneers that went there.
Mr. Curtis first was secretary of a mining
company at Austin. It was not long before his ability, perseverance
and integrity were recognized and in 1868 he was made superintendent and
manager of the concern. He continued to forage ahead until in 1871
he owed a controlling interest in the property—six years after he started
in the business. For several years he was successful in mining. Then
came the demonetizations of silver, and this so reduced the value of the
mining property that Mr. Curtis closed out his Nevada interests in 1885.
During the seventeen years that Mr. Curtis managed the property, however,
it produced silver to the value of $16,000,000.
While he was the projector in the erection
of a quartz mill at Mineral Hills, Elko County, Nevada, and its manager
for several years, Mr. Curtis did not devote all his time to wresting silver
from the earth—but branched out. He became half owner in the firm of Paxton
& Curtis, which owned banks at Austin, Eureka, Belmont and Reno, Nevada.
These Banks met all claims against them during the panic caused by the
temporary closing of the Bank of California of San Francisco. Mr.
Curtis also was partner in the firm of Gage, Curtis & Company, which
operated a large merchandise store at Austin.
When, in 1885, Mr. Curtis disposed of his
Nevada holdings, he returned to California and opened a large redwood lumber
plant in the then virgin forests of Eel River, Humboldt County. The
plant in which he was interested and which he managed was the nucleus for
the town of Scotia. To connect Scotia with the outside world a railroad
was constructed by the company to Alton along the Eel River bluffs.
This redwood plant then was the largest in California. Mr. Curtis
closed out his interests there in 1902 and since has become interested
in two redwood plants in Mendocino County.
His Humboldt County railway venture was preceded
by his construction and operation of a narrow gauge railroad from the terminus
of the Nevada Central Railroad at Reese River Valley to the nines of Lander
Hill in the Loyabe range through Austin, Nevada. Mr. Curtis also
was at one time county treasurer for Lander County, Nevada, and at another
time its county commissioner and built the Episcopal Church at Austin.
He was instrumental in the founding of the Bank of Eureka and the Savings
Bank of Humboldt County at Eureka, California, and was a director in each
several years, as he was also of the Santa Rosa Bank at Santa Rosa, California.
Wide recognition of his ability has come to
Mr. Curtis. At the dedication of the Nevada State pavilion at the
Panama-Pacific Exposition he was referred to as “a Nevada pioneer of whom
we are justly proud.” At present his interests lay in several California
corporations, among them the Glen Blair Redwood Company and the Pacific
Coast Redwood Company.
Dr. M. C. M. Soares d'Albergaria (page
There is enough of romance in the life of
Dr. M. C. M. Soares d'Albergaria to furnish material for a set of gripping
volumes, for though a son of wealthy parents, people of leisure, he has
from the beginning made his own way; and there is enough of versatility
in Dr. d'Albergaria's character to command the deepest interest.
Mine operator and dealer, author, editor, manufacturer, doctor of medicine
and of philosophy, and art connoisseur and collector of rare works of the
masters-he has been the central figure in a decidedly unusual career, and
today is a successful business man in San Francisco.
Born in 1868 in Horta, Portugal, Dr. d'Albergaria
comes of a house widely known in Europe and one, which gives him entry
to the most exclusive circles.
His father was the Earl T. Cardozo M. Soares
d'Albergaria of Portugal, and his mother Lady Louisa de la Cerda (Bettencourt)
d'Albergaria. Dr. d'Albergaria is a cousin of the Marquis Furnelles
and the Baron de Roches of Portugal, as well as a Viscount de Borges da
Silva of the Azores, and thee late General Roque, major-general of the
Portuguese army, and also of the Ariagos, late of
the presidency of Portugal, and of the Lady Cardozo of Horta.
Yet he is purely and simply an American-and strictly without the hyphen.
Following a period of instruction under the
direction of private tutors, Dr. d'Albergaria ran away from home when twelve
years old and came to the United States. He had read numerous alluring
books, in which the Western United States was described as fairly teeming
with Indians, and as a land where gold lay around just waiting to be picked
up. The young imaginative boy determined to shoot a few Indians and
gather up a stock of gold for himself.
His first stop was New Bedford, Massachusetts.
From there he went to New York, then came on to California. For three
years he made his way here, doing anything he could find to do, and attending
school at San Ramon in order to learn the English language. Then
he went to Australia whence, after a short time, he went back to Portugal-still
a boy, but with many of his illusions shattered. There followed trips
through Germany and other parts of Europe, to New York, to San Francisco,
to Japan and China and on around the world again: Dr. d'Albergaria has
circled the globe three times.
About fifteen years ago he returned to San Francisco.
He began dealing in mines, buying, operating and selling them again, in
California, Nevada and Idaho. Three or four years before the 1906
fire he started, as a side issue, a perfumery business in San Francisco.
Before long he had 486 stations in the United States supplying agents everywhere.
The fire all but wiped out this business and for two years De. d'Albergaria
was abroad. But in 1909 he came back once more and resumed his mining
operations, at the same time entering the manufacturing field.
Today he is president of the Fayalense Mining &
Milling Co., London Mining & Development Co., Puama Mining Co., Saw
Palmetto Mining Co., and others, and sole owner of the d'Albergaria Manufacturing
Co., of San Francisco, New York, Chicago and St. Louis, manufacturers of
fire department supplies and several other commodities, and also the North
Star and Black Warrior Mines on the Mother Lode.
Dr. d'Albergaria's fame as an art connoisseur is
the result of many years of collecting. He owns Catelo's "Midnight
Scene on the Ocean," which artists such as Tojetti, Emilian Schoole of
Vienna, and the late Benjamin Constant have pronounced the most realistic
marine painting in the world. It was presented to his grand-uncle
by Queen Maria Pia, Late Queen of Portugal. It is valued at $40,000.
Other gems in his collection, which probably is worth in the aggregate
$250,000, are masterpieces by Benjamin Constant, A. Schreyer, Jose Madroso,
Jacques, Artz and Fortuni. Art lovers from all over visit him to
gaze upon these treasures.
In 1898 Dr. d'Albergaria wrote and published in
English the romance of "Sanche de Bazan," a work that enjoyed a large sale
and which was translated into Spanish, French and German. He has
also written prolifically for magazines and newspapers and is at present
president and editor-in-chief of Western Life and the Optimist, two weekly
publications of editorial comment issued in San
Although he is an accredited doctor of medicine,
Dr. d'Albergaria has practiced in the profession only for a short period,
and that in the late nineties. What with his business and editorial
duties, and his relaxation in the field of art, he today finds his time
James R. Davis (page 257)
There will ever be romance in the story of
a mining camp. The very nature of the thing makes for it. Men
flock there with the single determination to wriest from the earth that
which will make them immune thereafter from the petty struggles of existence.
Some make their stake and go on their way rejoicing. Some fail, and
the failures, no doubt, are in most cases largely in the majority.
Of all the big god “strikes” that have had
this country agog at one time or another, that at Goldfield, Nevada, at
the beginning of the present century, stands among those of the deepest
popular interest. For one thing, it was close to home. For
another thing, many of the details of its history were unprecedented.
James R. Davis, president of the Round Mountain
Mining Company, is classified among “the big men of Goldfield.” Fortune
smiled upon him. Years of prospecting over a vast extent of likely
looking territory were crowned at last by the most surprising success.
And by brains and backbone he has made of his success something to be proud
To begin at the beginning, James R. Davis
is a native of Indiana, born at Columbus, December 16, 1870. His
father was Thomas C. Davis, a farmer, and his mother Martha L. (Ferguson)
Davis. When he was young his parents moved to the little town of
Minneapolis, Kansas, and in its public school Mr. Davis secured an education.
He was but 15 years old, however, when he left school and home and started
out to do for himself.
Making his way to Denver, Mr. Davis studied
pharmacy for two years. Mining appealed to him more than the drug
business, however, and he started out with a prospector’s outfit to hunt
gold in the Sangre De Cristo range in Colorado. When he had money
he prospected; when he didn’t have money he mined for others.
Until 1895 Mr. Davis mined in Colorado, with
varying success. He then worked his way westward to Arizona and California.
The winter of 1895-6 he spent at Randsburg, Kern County, California, and
from there he mined and prospected on up through the Panamint range, since
made famous by numerous magazine stories, and into the Death Valley country.
This consumed the years up to 1900, when Mr. Davis went to Nome, Alaska,
for a six-months’ sojourn.
The long hoped-for “Strike” did not come.
Mr. Davis worked his way back to Oregon, thence to California, and the
year 1902 found him in Tonopah, Nevada. This heralded the turn of
the tide. After prospecting in and about Tonopah and the bordering
desert until 1904, Mr. Davis went to Goldfield, which was just beginning
to come into notice. He was one of the pioneers in the new field,
the big rush not coming until 1905.
With J. P. Loftus, now of Hollywood, Cal.,
Mr. Davis took what was known as the Loftus-Davis lease on the Sandstorm
mine. In November 1904, they made their first strike, one of the
richest surface finds ever known in Goldfield. Ore taken from the
first round of holes blasted after the big strike ran on an average $5,000
to the ton. In four months Sandstorm netted Loftus and Davis $140,000
All this sounds like the wildest fiction.
As a matter of fact, it is Goldfield history.
Then Mr. Davis and his partner took a lease
on the Combination Fraction mine, the richest lease in the group.
In four months it produced $350,000. In 1906, with C. H. Botsford,
Loftus and Davis took an option on the Combination mines for $4,000,000.
The sold it two weeks later to the Goldfield Consolidated, realizing a
profit of 100,000 shares of Consolidated worth then $9 a share--$900,000!
Immediately after this Mr. Davis bought the
controlling interest in the Round Mountain Gold Mine, 60 miles north of
Tonopah, with Loftus. It was then simply a little prospect hole,
not producing. The price was $87,5000, with five months in which
to pay. In these five months the mine paid for itself; it has since
produced about $2,750,000 and Mr. Davis remains president of the company.
By taking over the Nevada Hills mine at Fairview, Nevada, about the time
he acquired the Round Mountain, Mr. Davis made another handsome profit.
This mine, in which he sold his interests in 1910, has produced $2,500,000.
The Round Mountain is still a big producer, giving up about $400,000 a
year. It is the richest property in the To-qui-ma range.
Mr. Davis, in addition to his other interests,
is today a director of the Pioneer Mines Company at Towle, Placer County,
Cal., and of the Traffic Oil Company.
S.C. Denson (page 258)
“Do unto others as you would like to have
them do unto you; do a good act whenever the opportunity offers the chance,
and never do an injustice or avoidable injury or unkindness to another;
be square in all your actions and always speak the truth, and, finally,
practice charity—not merely by giving alms, but in judging the acts and
motives of others. This is my conception of true religion, and I
think a man who adheres strictly to it will not go to a very bad place
in the future state.”
This, in a nutshell, is the creed of S. C.
Denson, formed after more than half a century in the practice of law in
the capacities of judge, prosecutor and simple attorney. It stands
today as the retrospect of an interesting and fulsome career, bearing directly
on a subject uppermost in Judge Denson’s mind—the proper punishment of
those who break our laws.
In odd hours Judge Denson has written a book,
published in 1914 under the title “Our Criminal Criminal Law,” in which
he sets forth the problem of the so—called “criminal” as he has found it.
His belief—and it is no hurried conclusion—is that we go about the punishment
of lawbreakers in a way that degrades them rather than works toward their
cure or reformation. By shutting them up and forcing them to live
in the very idleness that doubtless helped make for their undoing in the
first place, Judge Denson contends, we take away from convicts their chance
If a man is wholly and irrevocably bad, says
Judge Denson, he should be done away with entirely. But if he is
not—and most of them are not—he should be given a chance to feel that he
can work his way back to this former position. And this can be attained
by letting him work for a stipulated salary, his sentence being that he
must earn so much money to regain his freedom. This would make it
possible for those dependent upon him to live in the interim.
Judge Denson was born September, 1839, on
a farm near Quincy, Illinois, the son of John Denson and Emily (Crawford)
Denson. He went from the log schoolhouse to the brick schoolhouse
near his home, then in 1857 entered Abingdon College in Knox County, Illinois.
He left in 1860, just before graduation and came behind an ox team across
the broad plains to California.
Stopping at Oroville, then a flourishing mining
town, Jose Denson mined, did odd jobs, and finally entered the law offices
of Joseph Lewis and Thomas Wells as a clerk. For three years he studied
law, was admitted to the bar in 1864 and immediately opened an office in
Carson City, Nevada. He was a member of the first Nevada legislature
and was elected District Attorney. In December 1868, he returned
Locating this time in Sacramento, Judge Denson
became a law partner of Judge H. O. Beatty, father of the late Chief Justice
of the Supreme Court of California. In 1876 he was elected District
Judge of the Sixth District; four years later, when the new constitution
established a Superior Court, he became Judge of the latter body, continuing
so for three years, when he resigned.
Until 1888 Judge Denson was partner of William
H. Beatty, in that year elected Chief Justice. In 1889 Judge Denson
came to San Francisco. He has since been a member of various partnerships,
including one with Judge John J. De Haven, and at present, with his son,
H. B. Denson, and A. E. Cooley is senior partner in the firm of Denson,
Cooley & Denson.
Judge Denson has specialized in corporation
and land law and has appeared in numerous court cases of note. One
of these was a suit in equity, to recover the 50,000 acre Norris ranch
at Sacramento. There was involved about $2,500,000 and Judge Denson
won after taking the case to the United States Supreme Court. Another
notable case was the partition of the 43,000 acre Chabolla grant in Sacramento
and San Joaquin Counties, which was divided between 150 claimants.
Today the land is worth about $8,600,000. Judge Denson is general
counsel for the Pacific Coast Steel Company, Pacific Surety Company, Charles
Nelson Lumber & Shipping Company, and several others.
For eighty years Judge Denson was chairman
of the board of trustees of the San Francisco Normal School. He is
a past grand master of the Masons and prominent in the order. He
is the father of three children, Mrs. D. A. Lindley of Sacramento, Mrs..
George M. Mott, Jr., of Oakland and H. B. Denson.
John T. Donaldson (page 259)
Before entering into the mining field, John
T. Donaldson, president of the Phoenix Gold Mining Company, had already
attained success in two other pursuits—ranching and real estate.
He has practically given up all his other interests, however, and today
devotes most of his time to the development of his mines, he being also
controlling stockholder in the Gold Star, of the Alleghany district, Sierra
County, which has already produced $1,000,000.
The Phoenix gold mine, which is being operated
right along with profit, is on the famous California Mother Lode in the
Nevada City district. It is situated in the center of what is considered
the best mining section in the world. The Harmony channel, which
runs through it for a distance of about a mile, should produce from $1,000,000
to $5,000,000, and on one corner of the property is the famous Selby flat,
from which so many millions of dollars were taken a few decades ago in
surface digging. The Manzanita mine, with a record of production
of $10,000,000, has been worked clear up to the Phoenix boundary line,
and a mile and a half away, also on the Mother Lode, is the well-known
North Star mine, which has produced more than $25,000,000 in its time.
John T. Donaldson, head of operations at the
Phoenix, is a native of Illinois. He was born in 1865 near Chicago
on the farm of his father, George W. Donaldson. His mother was Fannie
(McDonough) Donaldson, who, with her husband, came to America from near
Belfast, Ireland. Two of Mr. Donaldson’s maternal ancestors held
high rank in the British Army.
Mr. Donaldson attended the public schools
near his home and when about 7 years old moved west with h is parents and
settled at Livermore. Subsequently he attended Professors Smith’s
College at Livermore for about three years. It had been his intention
to become a lawyer and he delved deep into Blackstone during his spare
moments. He gave up these plans, however, and did not take the necessary
examinations for admittance to practice.
About 1880, after leaving school, Mr. Donaldson
moved with his parents to a ranch in the southern part of Monterey County,
where he and his father began raising stock. For a quarter of a century
he remained a rancher, continuing alone after the death of his father.
Throughout this period Mr. Donaldson was a
leader in Monterey County development, giving of both time and money toward
the general upbuilding of the community and in inducing a settlers to locate
Government land. About 1890 he began raising the first wheat ever
grown commercially in Monterey County and a few years later introduced
the first combined harvester ever operated there. For a time it was
necessary to haul the wheat crop 60 miles by team and wagon to Soledad,
then the nearest railway terminus.
Abandoning the ranching business in 1905 Mr.
Donaldson established himself in Oakland in order to give his children
the advantages of an education. Meanwhile he operated extensively
in city and country real estate.
In 1907 Mr. Donaldson evolved an idea, which
since has found great favor among the bankers—a plan for educational insurance.
The project was that his company, the National Educational Society, should
put out small savings to banks in which parents could save money for the
future education of their children. At intervals the smaller depositories
were to be taken to a designated savings ban and the contents added to
a fund which was to allowed to accumulate. The fund could not be
withdrawn until the child was 16 years old, and then only for the purpose
of furthering its education, unless, of course, the child died before that
age, when the money becomes a sort of life insurance. If not withdrawn
beforehand, the fund was to be allowed to remain in the bank drawing interest
until the child became 21 years old, when it was to be paid over if desired.
The project failed because of the fact that
it was overtaken by the 1907 money panic, when the general desire was to
retrench. The idea has not died, however, for some of the banks are
still perpetuating it and find it of great mutual benefit.
Mr. Donaldson was married in 1890 in San Francisco
to Cora E. Bresette and is the father of five children: George t. John
E., Raymond L., Genevieve and Albert Donaldson. George T. Donaldson,
the eldest, now aged 24, is manager of the Ogden store of the F. W. Woolworth
Co., and bears the distinction of having been that concern’s youngest manager.
John E. Donaldson is connected with the Oakland Tribune, and the other
three are still attending school.
Walter E. Dorn (page 260)
Aside from his professional work, which has given
him a high status among lawyers of San Francisco and California, Walter
E. Dorn has, by his activities in another direction, made himself known
from one end to the country to another to literally hundreds of thousands
of persons. This is in connection with his upbuilding of Loyal Order
of Moose, which has awarded him the highest honors in its power.
Born in Watsonville, Santa Cru County, California,
October 30, 1870, Mr. Dorn is the son of N. A. J. Dorn and Rebecca Ellen
(Walters) Dorn. He attended the public schools of his home city,
later the Watsonville High School, and in 1895 was graduated from Hastings
College of Law. HE was admitted to the bar on Mary 25th of the same
Starting out to practice his profession alone, Mr.
Dorn has done so ever since. His practice has been of a general civil
nature through he has specialized, in a way, in commercial law. Today
he is general counsel of a number of corporations of more than ordinary
size and importance.
For five years, beginning with 1897, he was assistant
city attorney of San Francisco under Franklin K. Lane, the present Secretary
of the Interior. He was a stanch Republican, although he confines
himself to working for the general good of the party or son behalf of a
friend, seeking no reward in the shape of a public office for himself.
A little more than five years ago—on August 9, 1910,
to be exact—Mr. Dorn organized San Francisco Lodge No. 26, Loyal Order
of Moose, and a lodge that was to enjoy a growth no less than phenomenal.
Less than a year after its formation the lodge had a membership of 4,400
and was the largest of any kind in the world. Mr. Dorn was chosen
its first dictator, the title of the ruling officer.
The San Francisco lodge had made the Loyal Order
of Moose “sit up and take notice.” The Supreme Convention was impatient
to see the dictator of the largest lodge and said so. Mr. Dorn accordingly
took a big delegation in July 1911, to Detroit, Michigan, where the Supreme
Convention was in session, with the result that he was elected supreme
prelate, the third highest office in the order.
At Kansas City, Missouri, the following year Mr.
Dorn went up another step when the convention chose him as supreme vice-dictator.
And in 1913 at Cincinnati, Ohio, he was elected supreme dictator, after
having been a member of the Moose only three years. This, in itself,
was a record, but Mr. Dorn later was to set a still higher one.
Meanwhile Mr. Dorn had served a year and a half
as dictator of the San Francisco lodge, being for a time both dictator
and supreme prelate until he resigned from the lesser office. When
his term as supreme dictator expired in August 1914, he was made a member
of the supreme council, the governing body of the order, which is composed
of the supreme officers and eight other elected members. This is
the first time, by the way, that a supreme dictator of the Moose has been
retained in the supreme council.
While Mr. Dorn was supreme dictator he organized
the military branch of the Moose along the lines of the United States Army.
In the one year he organized 611 companies in as many lodges of the order,
and formed them into regiments of twelve companies each. There are
four Moose regiments in California alone and the 1600 lodges of Moose,
with their combined membership of 610,000, have in their drill teams more
men than the country’s standing army.
Mr. Dorn’s crowing coup came with his preparations
for Moose Day at the Panama-Pacific International Exposition on July 25,
1915. He succeeded in getting out for the parade detachments of the
Army and the Navy on a Sunday, thereby breaking a rule that had been in
force for the past sixty years. Considering the rule one of convenience
rather than of necessity, Mr. Dorn left no stone unturned to have his requests
granted. He went to the Secretary of the Navy, to the Secretary of
War and even to the Vice-President—who is himself, a Moose—and Congressmen
and Senators sent wire after wire to Washington on his behalf. The
result was one of the finest parades of the exposition year.
Mr. Dorn belongs to a number of fraternal orders
besides the Moose. He was married August 17, 1895, in San Francisco
to Ellen J. O’Reilly and is the father of five children.
Frederick Eggers (page 262)
“I believe that to accord humane treatment to a
man who has violated the law and is being punished for it will bring him,
more quickly by far then cruelty, to see his mistake and seek to rectify
it by future good conduct. Prisoners appreciate thoughtfulness on
their behalf—it eases their bitterness against organized society.”
This, briefly, is the creed of Frederick Eggers,
Sheriff of San Francisco County, by which he has accomplished veritable
wonders in transforming the County Jail into a place where offenders are
“given a chance.” Frederick Eggers formed a set of principles, then
put those principles into operation. He was elected on a platform
in which he promised to give the people a businesslike administration with
efficient and courteous treatment of those who had dealings with his office,
to direct his personal attention to the jail at Ingleside, to make it sanitary
and to give its prisoners humane treatment, all possible outdoor exercise
and plant of clean, wholesome food.
This platform the Sheriff has carried out to the
letter, and more. He has gained the public’s esteem, saved it money
while giving it better service—and many a man has he rescued from the very
brink of destruction.
On April 10, 1860, Mr. Eggers was born at Hanover,
Germany. When a small boy he went to New York City and from there,
in 1876, to San Francisco. After three years in the grocery business
he became a salesman in the wholesale tea and coffee business, remaining
with this until his election as Sheriff.
It is a great truth that those who know most of
the work of Sheriff Eggers are those who have been most affected by it—his
prisoners. Not long after his assumption of office the Sheriff discovered
an old Dutch oven, which had been used in the former Industrial School
a quarter of a century before. He put the oven into shape and the
baking of the jail’s bread in it began. Daily the oven turns out
350 to 400 three-pound loaves, saving the taxpayers $300 monthly.
By the develop of the jail’s truck gardens the Sheriff
gives outdoor employment to thirty or forty men each day. Its products
net the city $160 and more a month; besides, vegetables are furnished free
to the Relief Home, City Prison, Emergency and Tuberculosis hospitals and
other charitable institutions—and it gives the prisoners exercise and fresh
air, besides fresh, green food. Sheriff Eggers also has been working
about forth men in the improvement of unaccepted streets in the poorer
sections of the city. This is of direct and lasting benefit.
“You will notice the absence of revolvers or rifles
in the hands of the guards,” says the Sheriff in describing his shows.
“There is a reason—I wasn’t to put everyone on his honor. They know
that if there is any disorder the entertainments will cease. The
result is they respect me. Should one become fractious I feel certain
a dozen others would quell him immediately.”
In stimulating the interest of his prisoners, Sheriff
Eggers has not stopped with the moving pictures and vaudeville. Realizing
that those men and women held on felony charges—whom he is not allowed
by law to give employment outside the jail walls—find close confinement
extremely irksome, he has established a circulating library for their benefit.
It already contains considerably more than a thousand volumes of good,
uplifting literature and it is steadily growing by the contributions of
those of the public who believe in assisting the less fortunate.
As for the prisoners themselves, they are eager to make use of the library,
and it is not difficult to discover that their reading is doing them good.
Under his system of penal control, Sheriff Eggers
finds so few real difficulties in the administration of the jail that he
is able to devote the more time to his office duties. He has reduced
these to a system, wherein efficiency and courtesy are the watchwords.
The Sheriff, his deputies, and his bailiffs in the civil and criminal courts
have been praised repeatedly by jurists, lawyers and the general public
for their attention to duty and their thoroughness.
Henry Eickhoff (page 263)
In watching the upbuilding of a community it is
easy for one to pick out from among the men with whom he comes in contact
the workers for the common good, and distinguish them from those who might
be classified as drones. The one sort of man is ever active; willing
at all times to do his share and more, and considering himself a part of
that which he is striving to forward. The other sort is content to
sit back, as inactive as if he had no interest at all at stake, and leave
the solving of problems to his neighbors and associates.
Looking over the career of Henry Eickhoff as he
has moulded it since his advent to San Francisco, one does not hesitate
in naming him as one of the workers. For more than a quarter of a
century he has taken prominent part in the affairs of his adopted city
and State, and ever as a champion progress.
Mr. Eickhoff is a native of New York City.
He was born in the Eastern metropolis January 17, 1856, the son of Anthony
Eickhoff and Elisa (Neuenschwander) Eickhoff. His father was of German
birth and a philologist and journalist of note, writing five languages.
He came from a German university to New Orleans and in the early days,
before 1850, taught school in St. Louis. He was sent to Congress
and during thee administration of President Cleveland was made an auditor
of the United States Treasury Department in special charge of the Consular
service. The present Mr. Eickhoff’s mother was born in Switzerland.
Following his preliminary education in the public
and private schools of New York City the younger Mr. Eickhoff took a business
and classical course at St. Francis Xavier Academy. By this time
he had fully made up his mind to enter the legal profession and to prepare
himself, for it attended the Columbia Law College, which graduated him
with the degree of LL. B. in 1875.
In June of the same year Mr. Eickhoff came to San
Francisco and entered the law offices of Paul Newmann as a clerk.
Two years later, in 1877, he was admitted to the bar before the Supreme
Court of California at Sacramento, and later was admitted to practice also
in thee United States Supreme Court. About this time he became Mr.
Neumann’s law partner and continued as such until 1883, when Mr. Neumann
was appointed Attorney-General of Hawaii. For some years after this
Mr. Eickhoff practiced alone, with consistent success. The present
firm of Lindley & Eickhoff was formed with Judge Curtis H. Lindley
Through all these years since he first became an
exponent of Blackstone, Mr. Eickhoff has aligned himself with those who
desire to see the city, the State and the nation forge ahead. He
took part in a reform movement of historical significance when, with J.
J. Dwyer, Judge Jeremiah F. Sullivan, Samuel H. Daniels and A. A. Watkins,
he was a member of the reorganization committee that ended the political
rule of Boss Chris Buckley in San Francisco in 1890. He was associated
with Matt I. Sullivan in the Heney-Fickert recount and was one of the committee
that conducted the campaign of Heney for District Attorney. He has
also been a trustee of San Rafael, where he made his home for some years.
When, in February of 1915, Dennis M. Duffy resigned
from the State board of Prison Directors, Governor Hiram Johnson immediately
name Mr. Eickhoff to fill the vacancy, recognizing in him a man who would
do his duty with a clear conscience and without truckling to any other
controlling factor than right and justice. Politically Mr. Eickhoff is
a Democrat, but he has always been a stanch supporter of Governor Johnson
and during the last campaign took an active interest in Johnson’s political
Mr. Eickhoff has taken a keen interest in club activities.
He was formerly president of the Columbia College Alumni Association of
California and of Cosmos Club, is a member of “The Family,” the San Francisco
Commercial Club, Merchants’ Exchange, Commonwealth Club, Union League Club,
the German Benevolent Association, American Bar Association, California
Bar Association, San Francisco Bar Association and a number of other organizations.
He is also prominent in the Masonic order.
Mr. Eickhoff was married September 13, 1882, in
San Francisco to Jessie M. Lowe and is the father of four children, Gregory
H., Victor, Tekla and Henry Eickhoff, Jr.
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