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California Genealogy and History Archives

Sacramento County



With his aspirations directed beyond the mere struggle for a daily livelihood and turned toward the acquisition of a competency, John Farren passed an exceedingly busy life in his adopted city of Sacramento. When eventually in 1909 death summoned him from the quiet little home which he and his capable wife had occupied for many years, he passed into the grateful peace justly earned by the honorable and industrious citizen. Unselfish toil had sanctified his existence and kindly good humor had cheered his intercourse with his fellowmen. Acquaintances unite in attributing to him the possession of the wit and optimism that characterize the Celtic race. Although it was not possible for him to secure an education in his native Ireland, nor did any good fortune come his way through early life, by dint of industry and frugality he made a place for himself in his own chosen circle of society and had a host of friends among the other pioneers of Sacramento county, where he had made his home from an early day.

The lady with whom John Farren was united in 1896 and whose devotion cheered his last days was, at the time of their marriage, the widow of William Mehary, a native of Ireland and a pioneer of California. She likewise was of Celtic blood and claimed the Emerald Isle as her native home, but, her parents having died when she was very small, she was brought to the United States in 1850 by one of her brothers, settling first in New York, where all of her kindred still remain. When first she came to California she bore up bravely against the depression of homesickness and isolation from relatives, but as her circle of acquaintances enlarged and as she found more to admire in the vast country beside the sunset sea she became a devoted champion of its progress. Especially is she interested in Sacramento, which she has seen develop from an insignificant western town into a prosperous and progressive city, worthy of the great commonwealth whose capital it is. For more than forty years she has lived in the town and for a quarter of a century she has owned and occupied the residence at No. 52.3 M street, where surrounded by an environment grown dear through long associations she is passing into life's twilight fortified by a deep Christian faith, cheered by the good will of the pioneers who still survive and crowned l)y a realization of an existence unselfishly devoted to the welfare of others. Were it not for the warm friendship of so many old friends her days would be lonely, for husband and near relatives are gone, and with her departure from the east long ago she passed out of intimate touch with the kindred there, but the friends in Sacramento minister to her comfort and see that she is surrounded by those evidences of affection so precious to all who have passed out of youth. 

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