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Biography of John Thurman of El Monte California

John Thurman, and his wife, Lettie Jane Thurman, emigrated from their home in Tennessee, to Arkansas, in 1848, and from there in 1852, they joined a party of about 65 families, who crossed the plains to California. Mrs. Thurman died during the journey, at the copper mines, in Arizona. The remainder of the family arrived in the San Gabriel Valley in September 1852, and located one and one half miles south of El Monte, where he engaged in farming. Mr. Thurman later purchased land between El Monte and Savannah. He died, July 6, 1876, at the age of 68. The

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Biography of Alexander Lamb Thurman of El Monte California

The sketches of our El Monte pioneers would not be complete without that of Alexander L. Thurman, who, when but a child, was brought to California by his parents John and Lettie Jane Thurman. A sketch of the latter is to be found elsewhere on these pages. Alexander L. was born in Bledsoe County, Tennessee, April 9, 1847. He was educated in the public schools of El Monte, and upon attaining his majority, he engaged in farming and fruit raising in this district. He acquired forty acres north east of town near Peck Road, and later purchased another twenty-acre tract

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Biography of Ira W. Thompson of El Monte California

Perhaps the outstanding character among the first settlers in the community of El Monte was that of Ira W. Thompson. Without doubt it could be truthfully stated that few men were more directly connected with the founding of the town at its beginning, for it was he who established the first stage depot on the site of the camp of the first pioneer arrivals. Ira Thompson was born in Vermont in the year 1800. No records are available locally as to his parentage or their nativity. Early in life he became a stonemason and practiced his trade in that state,

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Biography of Walter P. Temple of El Monte California

An inheritance of ability, courage and enterprise served to make Walter P. Temple one of the esteemed citizens of the vicinity of El Monte, where he engaged as a horticulturist and rancher. The pioneer of the family, Francis Pliny Fisk Temple, was one of the men who led the advance guard of the mighty hosts who brought American civilization to this sunny land. He was born in Reading, Massachusetts, February 13, 1822, and in that section was reared and educated. He was possessed of that sturdy independence of thought and self-reliant spirit that led his English ancestors to leave the

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Biography of John C. Stephenson of El Monte California

John C. Stephenson, Indian fighter and early resident of El Monte, was born in Knox County, Illinois, December 28, 1851. His father was T. W. Stephenson, also a native of Illinois and his mother, Rebecca (Ireland) Stephenson, who was born in Indiana. Until reaching his majority, Mr. Stephenson remained with his parents, who were farmers, and attended the local schools. Living in the great corn belt of Illinois. Mr. Stephenson became one of the state champion corn huskers. In 1873, he went to Iowa, and, in Des Moines, a short time later, enlisted in Company “H” of the 9th Infantry,

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Biography of Christopher C. Steele of El Monte California

Remembered by pioneers of El Monte and vicinity especially for his stables of fine racehorses in the early days, Christopher C. Steele was one of the district’s most successful farmers and stockmen. Born in Franklin County, Arkansas in 1844, Mr. Steele was the son of John Steele, a native of Tennessee. In 1861, at the age of sixteen, he enlisted as a soldier in the Confederate Army, and fought in many major engagements in the Civil War. In the Battle of Vicksburg he was captured by the enemy and sent as a prisoner of war to Rock Island Prison. Later

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Biography of William M. Snoddy of El Monte California

One of the early settlers of Southern California, William M. Snoddy is remembered in the citizenship of the state and held in high esteem for the qualities of character he displayed during his residence in this section. He was born in Boone County, Missouri, in 1843, a son of John W. and Sarah (Beattie) Snoddy, both of whom were natives of the same state, later, in 1849, becoming California pioneers, settling in Los Angeles County. William M. Snoddy was reared on the home farm until thirteen years old, when his mother died, and he then became dependent upon his own

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Biography of John B. Snoddy of El Monte California

John B. Snoddy is one of El Monte’s successful farmers. His ranch is located two miles northeast of El Monte where he is engaged in vegetable raising on a portion of his fifty acres, the remainder he rents out. His father, William Snoddy, represented elsewhere in this work was one of the early pioneers of California, successful in his personal affairs and prominent man among the citizens of this community. John B. Snoddy was born on his father’s ranch in El Monte, November 1, 1874, the oldest child in the family. He received his education in the public schools and

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Biography of Nicholas Smith of El Monte California

Among the California pioneers of 1849, and indeed one of the very first arrivals in El Monte, was the subject of this sketch. Mr. Smith was a native of Prussia, his birth being October 18, 1818. His parents were Lawrence and Mary (Maxminer) Smith, both natives of the place of his birth. His father was a farmer, to which occupation the son was reared. At the age of twenty years he entered the Prussian Military service, and served four years in the Ninth Regiment of the Prussian Hussars. After his discharge from the service, he was employed in agricultural pursuits

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Biography of Arthur V. Slack of El Monte California

Arthur V. Slack, a native of El Monte and the Son of William Slack whose life sketch is to be found elsewhere in this work, was born in 1871. He remained at home assisting his father on the ranch near El Monte and attending public schools until he was seventeen years of age. From that time until in 1896, he was engaged in the butcher’s trade being employed in different places in this district and in Los Angeles. In 1896 he started a meat market of his own at 27th and Main Streets in Los Angeles, which he conducted until

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