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California Genealogy and History Archives

Sonoma County


Rev. Thomas J. Comerford

Although a resident of California only since 1898, Rev. Thomas J. Comford, rector of St. Francis Solano, has been an interested spectator and an undoubted factor in the development of the community in which he resides. He was born in Kilkinney, Ireland, and early in life received an education that would ultimately permit of his entry into the priesthood. He made his studies for his life work at St. Kierns College, and after a successful completion of the curriculum, was ordained in June, 1898, by Rt. Rev. Bishop Browrigg for the diocese of San Francisco. Immediately on his ordination he came to California and was assistant rector of St. Agnes and Sacred Heart, of San Francisco, remaining there until appointed to his present incumbency.

The parish of St. Francis Solano, is one of the oldest congregations in the country, the followers of the particular faith it represents having met to worship there many years ago. The present large church has been built about thirteen years; the property occupies about half a block on Napa street and is a valuable piece of land from a commercial view point. The Convent is being run by the Presentation Sisters, who, in addition to work which this involves, have charge of the parochial school and perform a splendid work in the education of the young in this institution.

During the incumbency of Father Comerford, the various activities of the church have increased, and at present he has charge of the largest congregation in Sonoma. In addition to the arduous duties of this parish, he also has charge of St. Mary's church at Glen Ellen. He is a man of strong personality, capable of adapting himself to the varying circumstances of his life work, and is peculiarly qualified by nature for the performance of his high and lofty calling. A progressive man, he stands for the highest code of ethics and the attainment of civic righteousness in his town, and for these reasons, as well as for his personal characteristics, he is well known and respected by all.

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