California Genealogy and History Archives
San Bernardino County and Riverside County
FREDERICK S. WATERS — Almost the first recollections of Frederick S. Waters are of San Bernardino County in its pioneer environment. His life has covered a wide and interesting range of development and progress, and at the same time he has been regarded as one of Redlands' most useful and honored citizens. His home is half a mile north of Loma Linda Sanitarium, on the Pepper Road.
Mr. Waters by the accident of birth is a native of Utah, though he was only a few weeks old when his parents journeyed into California. He was born on little Cottonwood in Utah Territory March 31, 1854, son of James and Martha Louise (Margetson) Waters. His father was a native of New York State while his mother was born in England and as a child came to the United States with her parents aboard an old sailing vessel that was fourteen weeks on the voyage. James Waters possessed all the mental talents and resources of the real pioneer. He lived his active life in the Great West, going to Utah in the early days. For many years his occupation was hunting and trapping, and he made friends of and was associated with such distinguished frontiersmen as Kit Carson and John Brown, Sr. He hunted and trapped among the Rockies and Sierras, all up and down the Pacific Coast, and came to California as early as 1849. As a trapper he loaded his furs on mules and burros and packed them overland to Eastern markets, making such trips through a country beset with hostile Indians.
James and Martha Waters were the parents of eight children: Frederick; Tames: Mrs. Martha Louise Kiplinger, whose husband is manager of the San Bernardino Opera House; Henrietta, whose husband, J. A. Cole, was once sheriff of San Bernardino County; Mrs. Catherine Miller; Caroline Sophia, county librarian of San Bernardino; Mrs. Mildred Lawson ; and Miss Lela, of San Bernardino.
During the infancy of Frederick S. Waters his parents moved to Mariposa County, California, where his father became a sheep raiser. When the son was three years of age they made their home at Los Angles, and a short time afterward moved to Yucaipa Valley, where James Waters' old friend, John Brown, owned extensive land holdings. From him he purchased a large acreage and used it for a stock ranch. After twelve years he sold this land to William Stanifer & Dunlap, and then bought land in the modern city of San Bernardino, limited by the thoroughfares of First and Third streets and G to L streets. This ho also used for stock farming purposes, and in addition had lease of a large tract at Chino and other lands for pastureage.
The original San Bernardino race track of ninety acres was formerly owned by a stock company in which James Waters was a stockholder. Later he and Amos Rowe bought out the other stockholders and eventually Mr. Waters acquired Rowe's interests. This land was originally swamp, but is now entirely reclaimed and forty-five acres of it comprise the homestead and ranch of Frederick S. Waters.
Frederick S. Waters married Miss Mary Hambly, who was born in Canada in 1854 and died at the home place near Loma Linda in 1912. .Six children were born to their marriage and are still living : Louise, born January 17, 1882, is the wife of William Munsel, of Long Beach. Jane, born October 30, 1885, is the wife of H. C. Fronde, of San Bernardino, and is the mother of a son and daughter. Marshall, born August 22, 1888, is unmarried. The fourth and fifth children, Cyrus F. and George, are twins, born September 14, 1892. Cyrus enlisted March 22, 1918, in the 319th Engineers, Company A, was trained at Camp Fremont, on April 15, 1918, was transferred to Ammunition Train of the 8th Division, was made corporal May 18th, and was ordered to Camp Mills for overseas duty, but the signing of the armistice caused his company to be sent to Camp Lee, Virginia, and later were returned to The Presidio, where he received his honorable discharge February 28, 1919. His twin brother, George, also offered his services, but was rejected by the Medical Examining Board on account of poor eyes. The sixth and youngest of the family, Grace Waters, who was born August 18, 1896, is now Mrs. Alva Capper, of Loma Linda.
Frederick Waters out of his personal observation and experience is able to make some interesting contrasts between modem and pioneer conditions. He recalls the time when all supplies were hauled in by wagon from San Pedro, witnessed the passing of the Indian and the coming of the first railroad, and has seen transcontinental travel and communication move forward from ox trains to aeroplane, from pony express to telephone and wireless. In his district and after he had reached manhood a shipment of oranges was limited to six boxes, whereas now citrus fruit goes out to the market in thousands of carloads.
Transcribed by Peggy Hooper 2011