California Genealogy and History Archives
the pioneer families of Sacramento that have taken a very important and
influential part in the commercial and social affairs of the city,
mention should be made of the Coolot family. The founder of the family
in California was Anthony Coolot, an Austrian by birth, but after 1850 a
resident of the United States. Born November 19, 1821, he received a
superior education in various European cities, after which he spent some
time in Algeria, his residence there bringing him into close association
with the French people of that country, so much so in fact that he was
always taken for a Frenchman himself. Becoming imbued with a desire to
come to the United States he crossed the ocean and first settled in New
York City, but the location did not prove congenial on account of his
associations with people of the south. Going to New Orleans he secured
employment as clerk in a large glass and crockery establishment, in
which business he had served an apprenticeship in Europe. From New
Orleans he set out on a tedious but uneventful trip around the Horn on
the Yankee Blade, which brought the young man to the harbor of San
Francisco during the year 1854 and from the coast he proceeded to
Sacramento, thence went to Nevada county and began to mine near Moore's
Flat. The mines, however, did not produce profitable returns and at the
expiration of six months he returned to Sacramento, where he secured a
position in a glass and crockery store. For two years he remained with
the establishment, but then resigned in order to embark in the general
variety and notion business, in which line of endeavor lie met with
excellent results. Subsequently he embarked in the wholesale cigar and
tobacco business, which he carried on until his death in 1900.
Coolot went through the fires and floods of the early days. It should be
stated that previous to the fire he had erected a brick building at No.
812 J street and it was this structure that arrested the progress of the
fire of 1862 and helped to save a portion of the city. He was a staunch
supporter and friend of Sacramento and when the attempt was made to
remove the city to Sutterville he fought the attempt, and though he
received flattering offers, nothing would induce him to desert the city
of his adoption, in which he had such abiding faith. He was one of the
original subscribers and stockholders of the Central Pacific Railroad
and always a liberal supporter of enterprises that he deemed for the
betterment of the people and the building up of the city. He was a ready
and willing taxpayer and was very enterprising and public spirited,
although very modest and unassuming, and all of his donations and
charities were accomplished in an unostentatious manner. After he became
a naturalized citizen he voted at general elections, but never allied
himself with any political party, being independent in his attitude
toward national issues and governmental problems. Throughout his entire
life he remained a loyal adherent of the Roman Catholic Church.
Coolot was married in Sacramento in July, 1861, to Margaretha Sommer, a
native of Bavaria who had come to California by way of Panama in 1860.
She became the mother of three children, two of whom were daughters,
Mary Antoinetta, deceased ; and Mrs. Clara Louise Diepenbrock, one of
the cultured women of Sacramento. The only son, Augustin E., was born in
the year 1867 and to him were given the most select educational
advantages the city of Sacramento then afforded. From 1876 until 1885 he
attended the Sacramento Institute conducted by the Christian Brothers.
Upon the completion of his course of study he began to assist his father
in the cigar and tobacco business, and continued in the establishment
until his death. Meanwhile, upon the death of its founder in 1900, the
company was incorporated with Augustin E. Coolot president and Mr.
Diepenbrock vice-president. For two years, until the dissolution of the
company, the business was conducted as a corporation.
Removing to San Francisco in 1902 Mr. Coolot embarked in business in that city, but the great fire of 1906 wiped out the business. Thereupon he returned to Sacramento and organized the Aristo Mineral Water & Siphon Water Company, which has maintained a prosperous development and a steady growth. In this concern he fills the office of treasurer. As a business man he has displayed much of the keen discrimination, untiring energy and resourceful ability that brought success to his father. Unlike him, however, he has taken a warm interest in public affairs as a member of the Republican party and a stanch believer in its value to the country. His marriage took place in Sacramento January 8, 1902, and united him with Miss Rebecca Maude Elliott. The only child born of the union died in infancy. The family are generous contributors to the Roman Catholic Church and Mr. Coolot has been a sincere believer in its doctrines throughout life, having been reared in that faith. The Young Men's Institute of Sacramento has his name enrolled in its membership and he is also influential in the local work of the Benevolent Order of Elks.
Transcribed by Peggy Hooper 2011