surrounded by all the comforts of a happy home, and a large family, con sisting at present of seven children, Mr. Glass having lost two while living at Placevville. Those living are as follows: Albert W., Clara, Annetta, Irena, Frank L., Frederick and Rolla C.

AMOS M. GRAVES.—The subject of this sketch is a native of Monroe county, New York, where he was born April 10, 1841. July 8, 1862, at his country's call, Mr. Graves enlisted in Company G, One Hundred and Eighth New York Volunteer Infantry, and served his full time of three years. He now bears a memento of his service in the loss of one. of his index fingers. On his return home, he started with his mother via the Isthmus of Panama for the Pacific States, and arrived in San Francisco October 22, 1865. His father having preceded him to California, the subject of our memoir first found employment on the river steamers as engineer, which he followed some five years, at the end of which time, he joined his mother, after the death of his father, on his ranch of one hundred and sixty acres, two miles east of Antioch, where he is now engaged in general farming, and respected by all who know him. Mr. Graves was married in Martinez, October 23, 1876, to Miss Elizabeth Comrie, a native of Scotland. By this union they have one daughter.

MARTIN L. GRAY.—The son of Joseph F. and Maria (Cunningham) Gray, was born in Sedgwick, Hancock county, Maine, April 28, 1839, where he resided for the first thirteen years of his life. At this period he was engaged coasting in Summer, and in Winter attending school. At fourteen, engaged in the Grand Bank cod fishery in Summer, and attending school again in Winter. Sailed out of Castine, Maine, for three consecutive Summers. After arriving home in the Fall of 1855, from a voyage of five months, commenced teaching school in November, and taught until April. He then shipped on board of the schooner Carrie A. Pitman, of Marblehead, Massachusetts, Captain Henry Turner, Master, of Bucksport, Maine, for Grand Banks. He made one trip with Captain Turner, and on his return to Marblehead was given a recommendation to the owner, Henry F. Pitman, to have charge of the vessel. He was Master of her seven Summers, each Winter teaching school. During the Winter of 18C3 and 1864, he made up his mind to come to California. On May 20.1864, in Bangor, Maine, he was married to Maiy A. Emerson, a school-mate of his; and June 20th they both started for California from New York upon the steamer Northern Light, to Aspinwall, from Panama to San Francisco upon the Constitution, arriving there July 24,1864; stopped at the International Hotel two days, and obtained employment of Fred Larkin upon a farm in the vicinity of the town of Sonoma, but at the end of a month returned to San Francisco. On August 20th, he came to Contra Costa county, and for three years and a half worked on the farm of A. H. Houston. He was then one year in the employ of Sylvanus Hough; for another twelve months he was engaged with Elam Brown at Lafayette, from whom on November 1, 1869, he rented twelve hundred and fifty acres of land and started a dairying business, which he has since continuously followed. July 11, 1871, his wife died, by whom there were bom two children—Maria L., and Lyndon E. October, 1872, in San Francisco, married Lucy 0. Emerson, who died July 20,1873, by whom was born one child, who died July 29, 1873. May 20,1874, Lyndon E.; also Maria L., September 13, 1874, died. He is at present occupying three hundred and twenty acres of the above-named farm, and conducting a dairy of forty cows. Mr. Gray owns twelve acres of land in Vemon Park, near Temescal, and also several lots in the Bay View Homestead in Alameda county.

MUNSON GREGORY.—Whose portrait will be found in the accompanying work, was born in Delaware county, Ohio, June 25, 1828, where he was educated, and resided until 1850. In that year he essayed the arduous undertaking of crossing the plains by way of Salt Lake City, to the Land of Gold. Arriving in the City of the Saints in July, he there remained until the following November, when he took up the line of march, and having proceeded by the southern route, arrived in Los Angeles in the month of January, 1851. After a short time passed in the City of the Angels, he journeyed to the gold fields near Placerville, where he was joined by his brother, Platt Gregory, whence they found their way into Sierra county, and there dwelt until 1857. At this period, Mr. Gregory visited his birth-place in Ohio, and in the Spring of the next year was married. It should be mentioned that our subject visited Contra Costa county during the year 1855, and purchased in 1857, a valuable farm, beautifully situated near the base of Mount Diablo, comprising four hundred and forty-one acres. Hither, after his marriage he came in 1858, with his bride, via Panama, and here have they since resided, the original property having been so augmented that it now consists of nine hundred and fifty acres of the finest land in the fertile Ygnacio valley. Here Mr. Gregory has surrounded himself with every comfort necessary to a rural life, while it is a satisfaction to know that he enjoys the confidence and esteem of all the residents of the county of which he is a worthy citizen. We may not omit to mention that Mr. Gregory has collected a valuable assortment of geological specimens, all the fruits of Contra Costa county, which are carefully named and classified while the fossil specimens injiis collection—from the Brobdiguag oyster of seven inches by twelve inches, to the perfect impression of the oak leaf—are most complete and valuable. Married in Delaware county, Ohio, February 1, 1858, Miss Laura Knox, a native of that State, and has surviving: Fannie E., Herbert M., and Warren C.

ERASMUS D. GRIGSBY.—A native of Missouri, born October 2, 1841. In the Spring of 1852, then being but eleven years old, he started with his parents, two brothers and two sisters, to cross the plains to the Golden State, and after an uneventful trip of six months, arrived in Napa valley, locating on the place now owned by his father, Terrel L. Grigsby, one of the best known men of Napa county. He lived with his parents on their farm until October, 1864, when he married, came to this county in 1868, leased land on the Marsh Grant, also leased land in Stanislaus county for four years, carrying on the two farms, and in 1876 purchased his present valuable farm of three hundred and twenty acres, four miles north of Point of Timber. He subsequently purchased one hundred and sixty acres more land and is now engaged in general farming. Married in Napa county, October 28, 1864, Miss Elmira Miller, a native of Illinois. By this union they have four children—two sons and two daughters: Laura S., Warren M., Lillie J., and Byron L.

LOUIS GRUNAUER—The pioneer merchant of Brentwood, a native of Prussia, was born October 6,1854. When eleven years of age he attended school in Hamburg for three years. He then, at fourteen years, emigrated to America, first locating in New York for one month. Now he sailed via Panama for the Pacific Coast, and arrived in San Francisco in November, 1868. His first move was to Amador county, where he clerked for one year. He next spent eight years in the same capacity in San Joaquin. Mr. Grunauer then engaged in business for himself in Alameda county, where he resided for one year, and in September, 1878, came to Contra Costa, to what is now the town of Brentwood, built his present large store and hotel, opened the first business house of that thriving town, and in 1880, received the appointment of postmaster of Brentwood.

FREDERICK L. HAMBURG.—The subject of this sketch is a native of Hesse Cassel, Germany, born March 5, 1824, and there attended school until fifteen years of age, when he was apprenticed to the trade of harness-maker for four years. He followed that business until twenty-one years of age. He then enlisted in the army for three years, and in the Fall of 1850 emigrated to the United States, first locating in New York city, where he followed his trade and resided until his coming to this State. In June, 1853, he sailed, via, the Nicaragua route, for California, and arrived in San Francisco in July of the same year. He then went to the mines of El Dorado and Calaveras counties, where he followed mining until 1858, when he came to Contra Costa county, locating in Alamo, where he found employment at his trade. Remaining but a short time, he again returned to th« mines; and in 1860 came back to Contra Costa and to Alamo, when he bought his former employer's harness establishment, engaged in business for himself, and there continued until the Spring of 1876. He then sold out, and with his family paid a visit to his old home in Germany. There they sojourned about two years, and again returned to California, remaining in San Francisco about one year. In May, 1879, we once more find him in this county, having purchased his present farm in Alamo of one hundred and sixteen acres, which he has leased, but still retains his residence, and is now living on the fruits of a well spent and prosperous life. Married in Alamo June 21, 1863, Miss Maria Korman, a native of Germany. They have two children— August and Frederick L. Jr.

HON. GEORGE W. HAMMETT—The subject of this sketch is a native of Kentucky, and was born in Mason county, November 10,1822. When he was six years of age, his parents moved to Portsmouth, Ohio, and there resided until 1832, when they proceeded further west, locating in Taswell county, Illinois, where our subject was employed at the woolcarding business until 1844. He then went to Wisconsin, and remained in that State until April 1, 1853. Afterwards, with his wife and throe children, with ox-teams, he started to cross the plains to the Golden State, and after an uneventful trip, arrived in Contra Costa county in October, 1853, first locating on the place where he now resides at Lafayette, which he at that time purchased, but owing to a defective title has since lost, but is now residing on the same as renter. In Wisconsin, Mr. Hammett held several important offices, at one time, in 1851, being elected to the Legislature of that State, serving for two years. Mr. Hammett was united in marriage in Lafayette county, Wisconsin, March 25, 1846, to Miss Mary J. Gorham, a native of Illinois, by which union they have three children, viz: Frank, George W. Jr., and Laura E.

HON. AUSTIN WESLEY HAMMITT.—Was born in Columbiana county, Ohio, April 27, 1824, and is the son of Benjamin and Margaret (Masten) Hammitt, and resided there until he attained the age of nine; then his father's family moved to Northfield, in Portage county, residing there five years, and then to Circleville, Pickaway county; at the age of twenty our subject and a younger brother went to Wapello county, Iowa, and soon after his father with his family followed. He resided there until 1846, when he went to Ottumwa, in the same county, where he worked at the carpenter's trade until 1847. He next proceeded to Louisville, where he followed the same occupation for two months, after which he was engaged as carpenter by the Government in the Quartermaster's Department, and thence to Brazos Island, Texas, and to the mouth of the Rio Grande. After an absence of fifteen months he returned to Ottumwa. On April 20, 1849, he started with ox-teains across the Plains for California, passing up the North side of the Platte river, up the Sweetwater, through South Platte, across Greene river and on to Fort Hall, and entered the State through the Lassen road. Mr. Hammitt arrived at Sacramento, October 13th, the day of the election for law and order against the gamblers, and he voted for the former. On arrival there, he went to the mines and followed mining on the South Fork of the Middle river, and at Birdsville opened a store, which he carried on for some months. He then proceeded to Nevada city, and commenced mining on the Coyote diggings in April, 1850, remaining till December, when he went to San Francisco, and on January 1, 1851, passed through the Golden Gate on his way home to Iowa. He arrived at Ottumwa February 25th, of that year, and in the latter part of April he again started across the plains for Oregon, this time accompanied by his wife and younger brother. On reaching Elk Horn river they found it so swollen that all the ferries had been taken off, so they proceeded up the stream a distance of about fifteen miles and built a boat and went across. On reaching the other side, Mr. Hammitt was made Captain of the train. Continuing their trip they came to a bridge, where they found that some Pawnee Indians had £aken possession of it and were charging toll. Mr. Hammitt asked to see the chief of the tribe and told him he was not prepared to pay toll. The chief replied that they could cross if he would give him a bag of sugar, but to his surprise when they started over the bridge each one wanted a bag of sugar. He called on his men and told them to be ready to make an attack if necessarj'. They, however, went across without any difficulty. Continuing the journey, they arrived in Lane county, Oregon, eight miles from Eugene City, where our subject obtained a half section of land from the Government, and erected the first Court House in that county. He was engaged in the carpentering business there until April, 1857. On June 15,1857, he arrived in Contra Costa county and settled near Walnut Creek. In 1858, he purchased the "old David Glass place," about two miles from Walnut Creek, and resided there until the Fall of 1881. He then went to San Francisco, and after a period of nine months returned to Walnut Creek, where he engaged in mercantile business and which he is now prosecuting. Mr. Hammitt served a term in the Assembly in 1873-74, for the county of Contra Costa, being elected on an independent ticket. He also served as Justice of the Peace from 1865 to 1867. Married April 10, 1849, Samantha Shaffer, daughter of Jacob and Elizabeth (Heddinger) Shaffer. Mrs. Hammitt was born in Harrison county, Ohio, June 28, 1827. The children by this union are Millard, Samantha Malicia, Wesley H., and John C.

« PreviousContinue »