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California Genealogy and History Archives

Sonoma County


William Albert Dayton

Ranching and milling activities have occupied the attention of William Albert Dayton throughout all of his mature years, and have formed the foundation of his present substantial prosperity, whereby is accorded a place among the influential and successful native sons of Sonoma county. To an exceptional degree he is conversant with the lumber industry along the coast and as a member of the Laton Lumber and Investment Company at Markham, this county, he has identified himself intimately with a well-known concern organized for the development of local realty and lumber interests. The ranch which he owns and which stands near Duncans Mills comprises eight hundred and seventy-six acres of land. Almost all of this vast tract is in meadow, pasture or timber, there being a immense amount of fine lumber in the forests that eventually will net its owner a rich return for his investment. In common with other residents of the county he has taken up the fruit industry during recent years, and on his place there is now to be seen nine acres in apple trees of the choicest varieties suited to the locality.

A lifelong resident of Sonoma county, William Albert Dayton was born August 23, 1859, being a son of Alexander and Catharine Dayton, the latter born in New York state and reared at Nauvoo, in Hancock county, Ill. While Illinois was yet at the edge of the frontier Alexander Dayton was born there in 1833, and from there he came to California in 1856 via the Isthmus of Panama, settling in Sonoma county and taking up the occupation of a rancher, to which he devoted his remaining days. Practically all of his life was passed near the boundaries of civilization. Hence he had few or no advantages, yet he was a man of sturdy common sense, a large store of self-acquired frontier lore and pioneer resourcefulness. In his family there were four children, John Joseph, William Albert, Henry and Anna. The eldest son, by his union with a young lady born in San Francisco, has four children, John Joseph, Jr., Willard Kief, Hazel W. (Mrs. Frank Reigo) and Eveline.

After having started out as a rancher Mr. Dayton was ready to establish a home of his own and he then married Julia R3ecilia Lundquist, who was born in Sweden July 13, 1869. By this union there are two children, Earl T. and Leslie V. Mrs. Dayton is a daughter of A. and Amelia Lundquist, natives of Sweden, the former born in 1826 and reared in his native land. It was not until 1880 that he brought his wife and children to the United States. Ever since then he has resided in California and now makes his home in Lake county. In the Lunquist family there are nine children, namely: Joel, who is married and has two sons, Andrew and Philip; Levi, who married Ruby Dearborn and has five children, Louis, Dell, Elma, Ida and Juanita; Henry; David; Caleb, who married Irma Cottrell and has six children, Leonard, Albert, Harold, Virgil, Norma and Alice; $Reuben; Elenor, Mrs. Henry Lindholm, who has five children, Reuben A., Hugo, Lawrence, Hallie A. and Hilda C.; Julia and Victoria. The Dayton family are identified with the Baptist Church and contribute to its maintenance, as well as to philanthropic enterprises calculated to promote the happiness of deserving people. In political affiliations Mr. Dayton has been associated with the Republican party ever since he attained his majority and he has given his ballot and influence wholly to aid in the success of his chosen political organization. The people in the vicinity of Duncans Mills hold him in the highest regard, for by a lifetime spent in the same county he has proved the value of his citizenship, the integrity of his principles and the nobility of his character.

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