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California Genealogy and History Archives

Sacramento County



Teutonic ancestry is indicated in the name of Wulff. The founder of the family in the United States was one Henry Wulff, who came to the new world at the age of sixteen years. Prior to emigration he had served an apprenticeship to the trade of cabinet-maker and later he also gained a thorough knowledge of the occupation of a millwright. A desire to avoid the military service obligatory upon him if he remained in his native land caused him to seek a new home across the seas and for some time he worked at his trades in St. Louis, Mo., but as early as 1850 he crossed the plains to California and ventured into mining with a fair degree of success. Returning to the east via Panama he married Miss Caroline Lehnke and established a home in St. Louis, where occurred the birth of his eldest child, Henry F. G., January 31, 1854. During the spring of the same year the family made the long journey across the plains and at the expiration of one-half year landed in Placerville, Eldorado county, when the son was nine months old.

For years identified with mining interests, Henry Wulff did not limit his energies to that occupation, but acquired varied interests in the west. He had the contract to build the first quartz mill at Placerville. Removing to his ranch in 1859, he took up the stock business on a large scale and at one time controlled a ranch of one thousand acres at Green Valley. Some of the land was acquired under the homestead laws and some by purchase, but the whole was improved through his industrious efforts and represented the results of his sagacious management. After years of active identification with the development of the west he died on his ranch in 1886 and his widow still remains at the old homestead. In December of 1911 she celebrated the seventy-fifth anniversary of her birth. Of her ten sons and four daughters there now survive five sons and all of the daughters.

After having completed the studies of the Placerville public schools and also for a time having clerked in a Sacramento grocery, in 1873 Henry F. G. Wulff attended evening classes at Heald's Business College at San Francisco, from which he graduated in 1874, and iii the meantime he earned his livelihood by clerking in a grocery store in the daytime. For one year he was employed in the coining room of the mint, and after resigning this position be went to Virginia City, Nev., continuing there until June, 1879, when he was appointed United States ganger in the Internal revenue officer for the Sacramento district. For nineteen years and three months he was identified with the Internal revenue office, meanwhile acting as chief deputy of the local department for ten years. While thus engaged he drew every check paid out for the construction of the new postoffice, the check in payment for the ground being the only one not drawn by him personally. When he had resigned as chief of the department he embarked in the real-estate business, during 1898 becoming a member of the firm of Kromer, Wiseman & Wulff. The retirement of the senior member of the firm in 1901 caused a change to the present title of Wiseman-Wulff Co. In addition to carrying on a general real estate, loan and insurance business, the firm has pioneered sub-division work in Sacramento. Among their most important tasks was the improving of eleven thousand acres at Knight's Landing, Yolo county, forming the Fair ranch at one time owned by the senator of that name. Under the name of the Sacramento Farms Co. they purchased this bottom land, which is as fertile as the far-famed valley of the Nile. On reclamation work here $350,000 has been spent, the results of the Kiienditure appearing in the first crop (1911) raised after the work had been completed, when six thousand acres wielded more than eighty thousand sacks oi' grain. Mr. Wulff has been secretary of the company since its organization.

By marriage of Mr. Wulff to Miss Louisa Galvin a son, Albert H., was born, who is now connected with a wholesale grocery business in Sacramento. After the death of his first wife Mr. Wulff married Miss Elizabeth Stelter May 2, 1888, and thus became connected with one of the old and honored pioneer families of Sacramento county, lier father, Frederick Stelter, having been a resident here since 1860. Of the second marriage there are three children, namely: Fred L., who is identified with his father in the real-estate business; Ramona and Horace B., who are students in school. The family attend the Lutheran Church. In politics Mr. Wulff stands stanchly by the princii)les of the Republican party and in 1911 he was its candidate for trustee from the ninth ward. For years he has been prominent among the Odd Fellows, belonging to Eldorado Lodge No. 8 and Occidental Encampment No. 42, and in 1910 he occupied the office of grand patriarch of the Grand Encampment of California. In the capacity of grand representative he attended the Sovereign Grand Lodge in September of 1911, held at Indianapolis, Ind., to which important gathering delegates were sent from lodges in every part of the world. His tact and counsel have been most helpful to tlie local advancement of lodge work and tlms to the general prosperity of the order. 

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