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 Biographies Index  



California Genealogy and History Archives

Sacramento County



The secret of success in all undertakings is to be found not alone in faithfulness to duty, Init, as well, in the power to maintain through all situations a well defined, individual purpose; for rarely does failure reward the man who believes in his hopes and accords them the patience and energy essential to their fruition. Ambitious from boyhood to become a successful business man, and supplementing his yearnings by strong, concentrative effort, the prosperity of Mr. Phinney has been fully merited and in his work as a member of the well known engineering firm of Phinney, Cate and Marshall, who maintain offices in the Forum Building, Sacramento, he has justified the highest confidence of his associates.

A native of Mahaska county, Iowa, his birth having occurred there, August 9, 1865, Cassius M. Phinney moved to Nebraska with his parents, John B. and Mary (Steward) Phinney, of Ohio. He received his education in York and Thayer counties, Nebr., applying himself to his studies with such diligence that he was enabled to graduate at an early age. Upon completing the high school course he entered the engineering corps of the Burlington & Missouri River Railroad and studied surveying with them for two years. Then for about two years he was county surveyor at Lincoln, and in 1887 came to Sacramento, where he secured a situation as assistant city engineer, serving faithfully during the succeeding nineteen years. In 190G he was elected county surveyor, taking the office in January, 1907, and conducting this office one term, after which he became associated with Cate & Marshall, the latter of whom served as city engineer of Roseville, Cal., and by means of their united skill, they succeeded in establishing an excellent business, embracing particularly plans for reclamation and irrigation enterprises, street work and sub-divisions.

Mr. Phinney's mother passed away in Seattle, Wash., in 1904, and his sister Carrie and his father share his well appointed home. His elder brother, H. S. Phinney, resides in Seattle, Wash., where he is well known as a successful fruit commission man, and save for occasional visits to California, thus far prefers the North as a permanent domicile.

Mr. Phinney is an active member of Sequoia Camp No. 104, M. W. A., Sacramento Lodge No. 6, B. P. O. E., and is an associate member of the American Society of Civil Engineers, the home offices of which last named organization are located in New York City, and by his exemplary conduct and deep interest in public affairs is recognized as a citizen of remarkable integrity and the highest worth. 

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