California Genealogy and History Archives
No small share of the enterprise which is contributing to the maintenance of the prestige of Sonoma county as a grape-growing and wine-making center is vested in the Franceschini & Lorenzini Company, proprietors of the Oliveto Wine Company, of Healdsburg. Under the brand of this well-known firm the finest quality of wines, both red and white, are shipped to all parts of the country, as also are the brandies from their distillery, all of their goods receiving the highest market prices. Some idea of the size of their plant may be gathered from the statement that over two thousand tons of grapes are crushed in the winery annually, the output of their own vineyard as well as grapes purchased from vineyardists in the surrounding country, while ten thousand gallons of brandy are manufactured in their distillery.
D. Lorenzini is a native of Italy, born in that country in 1858, during the time of the war between his native country and Austria. Although born in Italy, his earliest recollections are of a home in Switzerland, whither his parents had removed soon after his birth, owing to the unsettled conditions in Italy. Upon reaching an age when it was desirable and necessary to think of his future course in life he was naturally attracted to the chief industry of the locality in which he had been reared, wine and brandy making, and this he undertook to learn in all of its details. A natural adaptation for the calling enabled him to master it in a remarkably short time, and he had become quite expert at his trade before coming to the United States in 1883. In the same year he came direct to California, where, in the Napa valley, Napa county, he engaged in wine-making for the following two years. His identification with Healdsburg dates from the year 1887, at which time he accepted a position as superintendent of a winery, a position which he filled creditably and to the entire satisfaction of his superiors for two years. A desire to become proprietor of a plant of his own led him to resign from his position as superintendent, and with John Gardini he established a winery under the name of Lorenzini & Gardini. For some time a very satisfactory business was carried on under his name, but the partnership was finally dissolved, and since then, 1895, business has been conducted under its present name, Franceschini & Lorenzini Company. The brand of goods turned out by the Oliveto Wine Company, as their plant is known, has no superior in the county, and as a consequence are in great demand and bring the highest prices. In connection with the winery a vineyard of fifty acres is maintained, this, as well as grapes from neighboring vineyards, supplying the two thousand tons of grapes which are crushed in the winery annually. Both men display unusual adaption and liking for the business, which is bound to assume even greater proportions as the reputation of California is enhanced.
In 1882 Mr. Lorenzini was united in marriage with Miss Mary Jilradi, who accompanied her husband to this country in 1883, the year following their marriage. Three children have been born of this marriage, Ida, Alvesta and Edwin. Politically Mr. Lorenzini has allied his sympathies with the Republican party. He was made a Mason in Sotoyome Lodge No. 123, F. & A. M., of Healdsburg, and he is also a member of the Druids.
Transcribed by Peggy Hooper 2011