Henry M. Claussen, proprietor of the Alpine Dairy at Gonzales, was born at Point Reyes, Marin county, California, August 15, 1892, a son of Henry M. and Clara (Wallengren) Claussen. The father was a native of Schleswig-Holstein and the mother of Stockholm, Sweden. The subject of this sketch is the third to bear the name, his father and grandfather both having been christened Henry M. The Scandinavian countries have been celebrated in song and story for the skill and bravery of their sailors. The father became a sailor at an early age and when twenty-one held his certificate as master, qualified to command any kind of a ship on any of the waters of the world. His seafaring life was cut short by the death of his father, who was a pioneer dairyman at Point Reyes. At the time the sad news reached him he was on an outward bound vessel on a voyage to Hong Kong. He returned to Point Reyes at the earliest opportunity and took charge of the dairy. There he passed the remainder of his life.
After attending grammar school Henry M. Claussen of this review enrolled as a student in the Hitchcock Military Academy at San Rafael, California. Two years were profitably spent in this institution when the death of his father compelled him to leave school to take charge of the dairy which had so long been in possession of the family. Three years later the dairy was disposed of and in 1917 he came to Gonzales. Forming a partnership with A. R. Patrick, the two leased the Alpine ranch of five hundred and twenty-nine acres and established the Alpine Dairy. Prior to that time the ranch had been devoted entirely to the production of grain. The lessees changed it to a dairy ranch, though enough feed is raised every year to support the herd of cattle. Wells were sunk for irrigating purposes, barns were built to comply with the California laws regarding dairies, and a herd of high grade cattle was collected. Mr. Claussen soon afterward purchased his partner’s interest and became the sole owner of one of the finest dairies in this section of the state. He has a few registered bulls and over two hundred mulch cows, of which about one hundred thirty are kept in constant use. In 1923 he raised one hundred ninety-five acres of alfalfa, besides all the grain and hay necessary for feed.
Mr. Claussen belongs to the Masonic fraternity, the Benevolent Protective Order of Elks, and Salinas Pyramid, Ancient Egyptian Order of Sciots. He is also a member of the Gonzales Chamber of Commerce. In July, 1923, he was united in marriage to Miss Alice J. Peterson, a native of Point Reyes, and they have one child, Jean Marylin.
Source: History of Monterey and Santa Cruz Counties, California : cradle of California’s history and romance : dating from the planting of the cross of Christendom upon the shores of Monterey Bay by Fr. Junipero Serra, and those intrepid adventurers who accompanied him, down to the present day. Chicago: S.J. Clarke Pub. Co., 1925.