Search billions of records on


 Biographies Index  



California Genealogy and History Archives

Sonoma County


Richard Fulkerson

The earliest member of the Fulkerson family of whom we have any knowledge is John Fulkerson, the great-great-grandfather of the subject of this sketch. This ancestor was a native of Pennsylvania, as was also his son, Fulkird, who was taken by his father to Kentucky when he was a child of eleven years. Indians were numerous in that section of country at the time, and the family often took refuge from their attacks in the stockade at Lexington. The next in line of descent was Richard Fulkerson, born in Hardin county, Ky., February 11, 1806. Early in the '40s the latter removed to the wilds of Montgomery county, Ind., and from there, in 1844, pushed still further west to Davis county, Iowa. This now flourishing and thickly settled region was then in its most primitive condition, and if the full history of the state should ever be written it would tell of the noble and untiring efforts of Richard Fulkerson and his courageous wife in the development of that wild region. For over sixty years he had been a member of the Masonic fraternity. He died November 24, 1887, when nearly eighty-two years of age, and his wife died March 17, 1883, aged seventy-three years.

One of the children in the family of Richard and Sarah (Clawson) Fulkerson was Stephen T. Fulkerson, who was born in Grayson county, Ky., July 7, 1840. It was soon after his birth that the parents removed first to Indiana and from there in 1844 went to Davis county, Iowa, and settled as pioneers. After remaining in that section for about ten years, in the spring of 1854 the family came overland to California, reaching Sonoma county October 4 of that year. Stephen T. was a child of fourteen years at the time, the youngest of five children, all of whom had received a meager education in the country schools of Davis county, Iowa. Even since he came to the state in 1854 he followed ranching in Santa Rosa township, until giving up active labor, when he moved to Santa Rosa, where he now lives retired. When he was only eighteen years old he took upon himself the responsibilities of married life, his marriage, August 29, 1858, uniting him with Amanda Ellen Cockrill, a native of Missouri. Her parents, Harrison and Ruhama (Doyle) Cockrill, also natives of Missouri, located in Sonoma county in 1853. The ranch which was formerly the home of Stephen T. Fulkerson is located in Rincon valley, six miles from Santa Rosa, admirably located and so diversified as to hill and valley land as to be adaptable for every variety of crops the owner might choose to raise. This is one of the large ranches of this part of the county, comprising three hundred and twelve acres. Nine children blessed the marriage of Stephen T. Fulkerson and his wife, named in the order of their birth as follows: Henry H.; Alice Clara, who became the wife of Theodore Grider; Laura E., the wife of Douglas Badger; William E., deceased; Richard; Molly S., deceased, formerly the wife of William Wendt; Nora C., who became the wife of Henry Leggett; Bruce A.; and Ida Helen, the wife of George Cummings.

The fifth child in the parental family, Richard Fulkerson was born on the family homestead in Rincon valley, Sonoma county, February 19, 1871. After an attendance at the common schools of a few years in this locality he turned his attention to the calling which his forefathers had followed without exception, working first as a farm hand, and later undertaking a ranch of his own. He is now located on a fine tract of seventy-five acres near Santa Rosa, all under cultivation to vineyard, orchard, hay and grain.

The marriage of Richard Fulkerson in 1890 united him with Miss Pauline Wendt, a native of Sonoma county, Cal., the daughter of German parents, now residents of Alpine valley, Sonoma county. The only child born of the marriage of Mr. and Mrs. Fulkerson is Alma, born in Sonoma county in 1895, and now a student in the public school in Rincon valley. Politically, Mr. Fulkerson is a Democrat, and fraternally he is a member of Santa Rosa Lodge No. 24, Foresters of America.

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