California Genealogy and History Archives
mention of the progressive, far-visioned men who have assisted in the
development of Orangevale could not fail to include the name of John A.
Pierce, who has been a resident of the district since 1897 and meanwhile
has brought under splendid improvement two fruit ranches, one of which
he now owns and occupies, the other having been sold some years since.
In coming to the Sacramento valley he not only found an opportunity for
financial advancement, but also was enabled to escape the rigorous
climate of his native land. It is therefore a source of constant
satisfaction to him that in early life he left Canada for the States and
later was induced to seek a home near the sunset sea. His success is a
tribute to his own native abilities unaided by influence or means or
even education, for he was a member of a family in humble circumstances
and it was impossible for him to secure the advantages of a high school
education. However, habits of close reading have enabled him to acquire
a fund of information not always possessed by college graduates.
the capital city of Prince Edward county, Ontario, tlie town of Pictou,
Mr. Pierce was born September 13, 1867, and at an early age he came to
the United States in the hope of improving his circumstances. For some
time he held a position at Joliet, Ill., and while working there he was
married, January 15, 1894, to Miss Maude Irwin, who was born in Canada
and passed the years of early life in the same neighborhood where lived
her future husband. The young couple were not satisfied with the
prospects afforded by a continuance of day wages in Illinois and they
resolved to seek a location in California. During 1897 they came to
Sacramento county and shortly afterward purchased ten acres at
Orangevale. The land contained a few unimportant improvements, but its
later condition resulted almost wholly from his incessant labors. After
he had improved the tract he bought ten acres adjoining and planted the
new purchase in fruit trees, making altogether ' a splendid property
which he ultimately sold at a neat advance.
he had disposed of his first ranch Mr. Pierce bought ten acres where he
now resides. Here he planted oranges, prunes and grapes, selecting
first-class varieties of each. The vines and trees are now in thrifty
bearing condition and return to their owner a gratifying interest on his
investment. In addition to the liome place he owns twenty acres of
adjacent land, all of which is under cultivation to fruit trees. During
1907 he erected one of the most substantial residences in Orangevale,
this being a commodious two-story house containing all of the modern
improvements and furnished with a simple elegance reflecting the refined
tastes of the family. On the ranch there is also a packing house with
modern equipment, and Mr. Pierce also has erected other outbuildings,
all of which are neat and well-kept, making of the place one of the best
improved in the entire district. Besides this property he owns three
residence lots in the city of Sacramento.
In the family of Mr. Pierce there are five children, Arthur C, Irwin J., Charles L., Kenneth and Marguerite. The family holds membership with the Folsom Presbyterian church and contribute generously to its maintenance. Political affairs do not interest Mr. Pierce, who, however, keeps posted upon all national problems. During campaigns he supports those whom he regards as the best men, regardless of their party views. Personally he has no desire for official honors, and the only time he ever consented to serve in a public position was some years since, when his deep interest in educational affairs led him to consent to serve as a member of the school board. In that office he labored for the upbuilding of the local schools. In fraternal connections he holds membership with the subordinate lodge of Odd Fellows at Folsom, also is a Master Mason and a member of Folsom Lodge No. 64, F. & A. M., while with his wife he participates in the activities of the Eastern Star chapter in that place.
Transcribed by Peggy Hooper 2011