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California Genealogy and History Archives

Sacramento County



The father of the prominent lawyer whose name is the title of this notice, James Cornell, came by way of Cape Horn in 1850 and began his career here by mining on the American river in Sacramento county. His success was indifferent and eventually he turned his attention to ranching, which he pursued with considerable success. He is passing the declining years of his life at his home ranch, which he improved from a wilderness, it being located on the Folsom road, fourteen miles southeast of Sacramento. His wife, who before her marriage was Miss Susan Cleary, bore him six children, all of whom are living, Joseph D. being the third oldest.

It was in the public schools and in the grammar school that Joseph D. Cornell was educated in the English branches. His legal studies he pursued in the office and under the direction of Albert M. Johnston. Being admitted to the bar in 1900 he practiced with his preceptor till his demise in 1906. Mr. Cornell then opened a law office of his own and has engaged in the practice of his profession not only in the courts of Sacramento, but throughout the state. His present offices are in the Peoples Bank building. Owing to his careful preparation for his profession and the attention which he has given to every detail of his work, no less than to his manifest talent for his calling, he has been successful even beyond his expectations in building up a profit- able clientele, to the varied interests of which he has devoted himself indefatigably and most conscientiously and with characteristic ability. While the Hon. Theodore Bell represented his district in Congress Mr. Cornell was his very efficient private secretary, in which position he was enabled, by association with leaders in both great political parties, to acquire an intimate and definite knowledge of public; affairs of our great and growing country, a knowledge which has done much to win for him the high esteem as a citizen which he deservedly enjoys. Mr. Cornell is a member of the Eagles and of the Native Sons of the Golden West, in which organizations, as well as in all other relations of his life, he is patriotically helpful. 

History of Sacramento 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: William L. Willis
Historic Record Company, Los Angeles, California (1913)

Transcribed by Peggy Hooper 2011