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California Genealogy and History Archives

Sonoma County


Charles McAfee

Fine and deserving traits of character have contributed to the success of Charles McAfee, who came to California in 1867 and has been a resident of Sonoma county since 1885. He came here with limited means, but by well directed energy has accumulated a competence of which anyone might well be [proud. Not only has a productive property been brought to its highest state of development, a refined and hospitable home established, but a family of nine children has been reared primarily to industry and moral worth and to that superior intellectual growth which insures its members an honored place in whatever community they elect to reside.

Mr. McAfee has no personal knowledge of his birthplace, Logan county, Ill., where he was born in 1845, for when he was only one year old his parents removed to Iowa, and it is with the latter state that his earliest experiences are associated. During the thirteen years that the family remained there he attent3ended school and became initiated into the work incident to farm life, the father owning and maintaining a farm in the various localities in which he lived. In 1859 another removal brought them to Livingston county, Mo., and it was while working in the fields there that Charles McAfee determined to offer his services on the altar of his country. He was mustered in at Laclede, Mo., September 27, 1861, and served respectively under Col. John Morgan and Col. Madison Miller, in the Eighteenth Missouri Infantry, the latter being superseded by Colonel Sheldon after the battle of Shiloh. Mr. McAfee was fortunate in escaping injury of any kind during the first year of his service, but during the battle of Pittsburg Landing he suffered what was perhaps even harder to bear, being taken a prisoner and incarcerated in a loathsome prison for three months and twenty days. He was then discharged from the service, in St. Louis, his term of enlistment having expired, but in March, 1863, he again offered his services and was accepted in the cavalry service. He served throughout the remainder of the war, and was mustered out July 27, 1865, at New Orleans.

For a couple of years following his return from the War Mr. McAfee resumed farming in Missouri, and then, in 1867, came to California. From San Francisco, where he first located, he went to Woodland, Yolo county, and was identified with that section of the state for the following nine years. Coming to Sonoma county at the end of that time, he continued ranching in this county, and finally, in 1885, purchased the beautiful ranch of fourteen acres which has since been his home. The price paid for the property is only a fraction of its present worth, $4,000, and even at this price Mr. McAfee could not be induced to part with it. His specialty is the raising of chickens, besides which he has a thriving orchard of apples and other fruits, and also raises hay and grain.

Mr. McAfee was married in 1876 to Miss Rosa Emma Ogden, a native daughter of the state, her birth occurring in Sacramento county in 1858. The eldest of the nine children born of this marriage is James A., who is a practicing dentist in Sacramento; Albert Lincoln is in business in Portland, Ore.; Sadie M. is the wife of Ernest Waymeyer, and resides in Sacramento, Cal.; Georgia is the wife of Archibald Gale and the mother of two children; Loren is in Sacramento, as is also the next son, Vern; Ruth is at home with her parents; Leslie is employed in Sacramento; and Earl is a pupil in the local schools. Politically Mr. McAfee is a Republican, and by virtue of his service in the Civil war, is a member of the Grand Army of the Republic. On the paternal side he is a descendant of southern ancestors, his father being a native of Kentucky, while his mother was a native of Indiana.

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