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California Genealogy and History Archives

Sonoma County



A native-born son of the state and the son of a pioneer whose coming to the state antedated the earliest gold-seekers, Adam W. Adler is one of the best known and most substantial citizens of Sonoma, Sonoma county, and is the owner and occupant of property which his father purchased over sixty-three years ago. The elder Mr. Adler, Lewis by name, was a native of Germany, was educated in London, England, and from there, in 1842, he set sail for the United States when in the full flush of young manhood. The perilous voyage to the Pacific coast by way of Cape Horn was accomplished without disaster, and in the spring of 1846 Mr. Adler debarked from the whaling-vessel in which the voyage had been made. After remaining in San Francisco for one year he came to Sonoma county, and at Sonoma opened a general merchandise store which he maintained throughout his active years. Here he bought a two-acre plot in 1848 and erected the old house which has done faithful service for so many years. It was here that his married life began in 1874, when he was married to Miss Martha Winkle, who, like himself, was a native of the Fatherland. She passed away in 1900, four years after the demise of her husband, which occurred in 1896.

The only child born to his parents, Adam W. Adler was born in the old homestead in Sonoma June 12, 1876. The schools of Sonoma furnished him with the only school advantages that he received, but he has always been a constant student of current events, and is thus well informed and able to converse intelligently upon any topic that may be brought up. As soon as he was old enough to think of his future from a business standpoint Mr. Adler was attracted to the carpenter's trade, and after learning the business he followed it in Sonoma for a number of years. It was from this beginning that was developed the business of which he is the proprietor today, the A. W. Adler Lumber and Mill works of Sonoma. The establishment of the business in 1904 relieved a long-felt want in the community, as it is the only plant of the kind in Sonoma or vicinity, and six men are given constant employment, the force being enlarged whenever the business necessitates it. As a link between the past and the present is the old homestead that the father erected in the early days of his residence in Sonoma. This was before the days of saw-mills, and all of the boards that entered into its construction were hand-made, redwood timber being used throughout. In 1910 Mr. Adler began removing the old building from the site upon which it had rested since 1848 and erected in its place a beautiful modern house, in which he used some of the redwood that had done service in the old building for so many years, and is still in a perfect state of preservation. It is the most pretentious residence in Sonoma ; the reception hall, which is twelve feet wide, is finished in quarter-sawed oak. The den is finished in solid mahogany and the rest of the house is finished in white enamel. Mr. Adler is a friend of education and advancement, and both as to character and attainment is one of the most thoroughly reliable citizens of whom we have any knowledge in the county.

History of Sonoma County, California
Biographical Sketches of The Leading Men and Women of the County Who Have Been Identified With Its Growth and Development from the Early Days to the Present
History By: Tom Gregory
Historic Record Company, Los Angeles, California (1911)

Transcribed by Peggy Hooper 2011