California Genealogy and History Archives
The captain of the Napa City, John Lauritzen was born in Petaluma in 1885, the son of Jeppe C. and May (Claassen) Lauritzen, whose sketch appears on another page of this work. He was the oldest of four sons born to his parents and received his primary education in the public schools in Sonoma county, in which section of the state he was brought up. On completing the course in the primary schools he attended the Petaluma high school and later graduated from that institution, having successfully completed the curriculum. In 1904 he entered the employ of the Petaluma and Santa Rosa Railroad Company, spending his first year in the company’s warehouse, after which he became purser on the steamer Sonoma and later filled the same position on the Gold. Being an ambitious young man he was not content with a menial position and by his sterling worth and steadiness of character rapidly advanced in the favor of his employers. From the Gold he went as mate on the steamer Leader and was later appointed as pilot on the steamer Gold. So well did he discharge his duties that on July 15, 1908, he was made captain of the Napa City, plying between Petaluma and San Francisco.
Captain Lauritzen is a general favorite with the traveling public, his genial disposition and ready wit winning him a place in the hearts of the patrons of the company he serves. He is a member of the Benevolent Protective Order of Elks in which organization he is well known. He is also a member of the American Association of Masters, Mats and Pilots. Politically he believes in Republican principles. Although young in years, he occupies an important position, to which he has climbed not because of outside influence, but rather because of his own ability, as demonstrated in the steady application to his work.
Transcribed by Peggy Hooper 2011