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California Genealogy and History Archives

Sacramento County



Thorough knowledge of the electrical business acquired by a long experience while in the employ of others abundantly qualified Mr. Strand for the capable management of like affairs when he began for himself independently. Since he embarked in business in Sacramento he has enjoyed a steady but rapid progress until now the establishment of which he is sole proprietor ranks among the largest of its kind in all of Northern California, having the trade not only of people in Sacramento, but also of many residents of adjacent communities. Three different departments unite to form the business, one of these being the sale of electrical supplies, another being the furnishing of special designs in fixtures, while the third is the taking of contracts for the wiring of residences and business blocks, for motors, or anything pertaining to electricity.

Very soon after the discovery of gold in California a youth from Stockholm, Sweden, crossed the ocean to America and united his destiny with those of other pioneers of the vast and undeveloped west. This young man, by name William Alfred Strand, possessed the rugged constitution and sterling mental attributes necessary to life in a frontier community, and he became well known in San Francisco, where for years he carried on a general mercantile store. While he did not acquire great wealth, he was prospered in his business undertakings and at the same time he won the friendship of those with whom he had commercial relations. Some years after he left his native land and settled in California he married a young lady of Swedish birth. He passed away in San Francisco, and she is now residing in Alameda. They became the parents of six children, four of whom are now living.

The son who bears his father's name is a native of San Francisco and was born October 27, 1880. Upon the completion of his schooling he secured employment at any occupation promising an honorable livelihood and it was not until shortly afterward that he entered the business in which his interests since have been centered. This was the starting to learn the electrical trade in the plant of the Edison Light and Power Company, of San Francisco. For four years he continued with that concern and then, when eighteen j^ears old, started an electrical business in the same city, known as the Golden Gate Electrical Company, which he conducted with sig nal success for three years. On February 16, 1900, he was united in marriage with Miss Addie Giovanni, a resident of San Francisco. The wedding tour of the young couple consisted of a trip to Oregon, where Mr. Strand had secured a position as superintendent of construction of new telephone lines in a logging camp twenty-five miles from Portland. At that camp, which was known as Lacenta, he remained for two years and meanwhile, October 29, 1901, his daughter, Violet, was born. After returning from that place to San Francisco he was engaged for one year as foreman for the Snell electrical works.

Coming to Sacramento about 1903 Mr. Strand became associated with Scott, Lyman & Stack as foreman and for four years he continued in the same capacity, eventually resigning in order that he might embark in business for himself. October 8, 1907, the firm of Strand & Vining opened an electrical store at No. 609 J street, Sacramento. The quarters were small, but amply large enough for the insignificant business of those days. In 1908 the junior member sold out his interest to Mr. Strand, who soon afterward moved to larger and better quarters at No. 524 Oak avenue, and still later into the present new building, which was built for him at No. 1012-14 Sixth street, meanwhile carrying on a growing trade and winning the confidence of all with whom he has dealings. It is the consensus of opinion that he has the most complete and up-to-date display-rooms of electrical fixtures that may be seen on the Pacific coast, and also, that he is the largest contractor in his line of business in the Sacramento valley. Notwithstanding the pressure of business demands he has found leisure to keep posted concerning politics and gives his support to the Republican party in all general elections. With his family he is an attendant upon the services of the German Lutheran Church and contributes to the maintenance of the same. Besides their daughter he and his wife have a son, Alfred William, who was born in Sacramento August 29, 1905. In fraternal relations Mr. Strand holds membership with the Independent Order of Odd Fellows, the Improved Order of Red Men, the National Union and the Loyal Order of Moose, while Mrs. Strand has been prominently associated with the Rebekahs and the Ladies Auxiliary of the Foresters and the Druids, in which latter she officiates as past president. Mr. Strand is also an active member of the Chamber of Commerce. 

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