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Thomas F. Meagher

In Thomas F. Meagher we find a Native Son of the Golden West whose pride in his place of birth is paramount to almost any other honor that might be his, judging by his interest and activity in the circles of that well-known body. Born in Freestone, Sonoma county, November 21, 1861, he is a son of Michael P. and Mary (Hanlon) Meagher, natives of Waterford and Dublin, Ireland, respectively, the former of whom came to the west in the early ‘50s and was in San Francisco during the time when law and order were almost unknown quantities. As a member of the vigilant committee he did his part to bring about better conditions by subduing the lawless element that had come to the west at the time of the gold rush. The year 1859 found him in Sonoma county, one of the first to settle in the vicinity of Freestone, where he came with W. O’Farrell and managed a ranch for him. Subsequently he purchased a ranch and engaged in general farming and stock-raising throughout the remainder of his life. His first experience along this line had been gained while superintendent of an old-country estate, where all the work was done by Indians. He passed away in 1867, his wife surviving him until 1892.

It was on the old family homestead near Freestone that Thomas F. Meagher was reared to mature years, and in that vicinity he ranched on his own account for some time. Giving this up finally, he went to San Francisco and for a time was in the employ of the street railroad company, later being employed as a watchman in the United States mint there. A later position was in the Mare Island navy yard at Vallejo, which he filled for some time, and upon giving it up in 1904 he returned to Sonoma county, and in Sebastopol established the restaurant business of which he is still the proprietor. In addition to this business he also owns a ranch of twelve acres, all of which is set out to a choice grade of fruit, principally to Gravenstein apples, which are now coming into bearing.

Mr. Meagher’s ability as a public officer was recognized in April of 1908, when his fellow-citizens elected him a trustee of the town of Sebastopol, a position which he is still filling to the satisfaction of all concerned. Fraternally he is a member of the Benevolent Protective Order of Elks (being a member of the lodge at Santa Rosa), the Druids and the Redman of Sebastopol, and socially he belongs to the Native Sons of the Golden West, in which he is serving as district deputy grand president of District No. 2. His interest and activity in the order date from the time his name was placed on a roll of membership, and in the meantime he was attended all the sessions of the grand parlor.


Source:
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