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California Genealogy and History Archives

Sacramento County



Two generations bearing the name of McEwen have been intimately identified with the commercial history of Sacramento and have engaged extensively in business affairs bringing them into direct and congenial relations with a large number of customers. Prior to his removal to California in 1876 and his settlement in Sacramento, the father, Edward McEwen, had made his home in New York state, where he was born at Brockport, Monroe county, February 18, 1855, and where he had received an excellent education ending with a course of study in the State Normal School. At the age of twenty-one years, having started out to earn his own way in the world, he came to California and secured employment as a moulder in the shops of the Southern Pacific Railroad Company at Sacramento. Later he decided that business affairs offered greater opportunities than the work of a mechanic, so he opened a retail grocery in partnership with John McMurray. At the expiration of two years he purchased the interest of his partner and continued the grocery alone, building up a permanent class of customers that gave him an important and extensive family trade. The long and successful commercial association of this business man with Sacramento did not end until his demise, which occurred October 13, 1906, and which brought to an honorable close a long period of constant identification with the grocery trade in the capital city.

The city of Sacramento is the native place of Edward J. McEwen, who was born January 5, 1885, and is next to the eldest of the three children of Edward and Maggie E. McEwen. Primarily educated in the grammar schools, he later took a course in the city high school and at the age of seventeen years he spent six months in the Atkinson Business College. The first position which he held, that of clerk, brought him into the city offices of the Southern Pacific Railroad Company and already he was gaining an accurate knowledge of the various duties of that place when the death of his father rendered it expedient for him to assume the management of the grocery in the interests of the estate until it was closed out, since which time he has been bookkeeper for the Union Oil Company.

The marriage of Mr. McEwen occurred in Sacramento August 7, 1907, and united him with Miss Esther Borel, who was born in Marysville, and by whom he has a daughter, Eleanor. The family are members of the Catholic Church. 

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