Click Here to Print This Story!   Click Here to get a PDF Copy of this Story!   

Sunday, January 25, 1998

County grows and ruffians rile children

Kristin Delaplane

New schoolhouse for Fairfield

The county asked for a Suscol and Vallejo road to connect Vallejo with the steam ferry to a point on the Contra Costa shore opposite Mare Island.
From there travelers would take a wagon road to Alameda County. This would mean the traveling public would have an accessible and continuous highway from Napa to San Francisco that could be traveled in as short as four hours.

A.S. Wiseman was arrested in Napa on a complaint filed by J.B. Frisbee.

Wiseman had thrown lumber in the bay near Slaughter House Point, which was near the boundary line between Solano and Napa counties.

The Vallejo Hook & Ladder Co. purchased a lot and was constructing a building for the company.

Dentist Dr. W.H. Stanley set up a permanent practice.

Vallejo trustees adopted a law requiring sidewalks to be built and providing for the cleanup of streets.

Within a few weeks, about a mile of new sidewalks had been built.

Solmon Haas of Hass & Co. carried one of the most completed stock of newspapers and Eastern periodicals in the county. He was the sole agent of the San Francisco Times.

The land was being graded for the San Francisco-Marysville Railroad.

Work was started at Hannibal’s barn with 14 double teams plowing and scraping.

Dr. Anderson’s office was robbed of surgical instruments and medical books. Benicia

One evening the engineer of the steamship Constitution was walking from the Pacific Mail Steamship Co. toward town.

He was halfway between Bottle Hill and town when two men accosted him and robbed him at gunpoint.

He gave the robbers his gold watch and chain, a meerschaum pipe and a small amount of money.

A festival to aid the St. Paul’s Episcopal Church was given at Reuger’s Hall.

Attorney L.B. Mizner went into partnership with J.E. Abbott.

A company of 90 men, the 8th Calvary Regiment under the command of Capt. Hill, was going to winter at the Benicia Barracks.

Shortly after they arrived, five soldiers made a break taking with them their arms and other government equipment.

They were tracked down at San Francisco when they were trying to board the boat for Stockton. Fairfield

Builders J.W. Pearce and Q.A. Hall, contractors and builders, were hired to move the old courthouse and place it in the new courthouse enclosure.

The old building was repaired and replastered and the offices were fitted up to be rented to lawyers at a monthly fee of $38.50.

Luke C. Hayes, Joseph McKenna and L.P. Marshall were new attorneys on the scene. Attorney William. S. Wells was the agent for the Pacific Insurance Co.

The public school of Suisun and the private school in Fairfield were going to join together for a picnic at Dingley’s Mill on May Day, however, the Suisun students got a late start. So, instead of picnicking at Dingley’s Mill, they picnicked on the Sabbath School grounds.

The Fairfield school group made it to Dingley’s Mill, however, their day was somewhat marred on the way home when the wagons carrying the youngsters were surrounded by several older boys on horseback who rode furiously about the wagons. These Green Valley boys were noted ruffians, who had assaulted the flag.

Plans were being drawn up for a new schoolhouse in Fairfield, which was to be built with private funds.

Livery stable runabout: Isaiah Anderson reportedly leased the Livery Stable at Fairfield, which had been run by H.W. Blanchard. The new firm was Anderson and Yost. (Likely this is the same Anderson who had a stable in Suisun City, which Canon had purchased in 1864.)

The next news was that James T. Wells was operating the Fairfield Livery Stable and that he had purchased it from E.K. Yost.

A few months later there was an ad for the “Fashion Stable” at the courthouse in Fairfield being operated by Markwood and Yost.

N.C. Butler held a shooting match Christmas Day with 100 turkeys and 500 pigeons. (In 1863, the Monitor Feed Stable in Fairfield was operated by Butler.)

The Union Hotel was located in front of the courthouse. The proprietor was J.W. Reser. Hay and grain were for sale in quantities to suit for feeding purposes.

Holscher & Kagee were wholesale and retail liquor dealers. (In 1864, saloonkeeper George Kagee received serious fractures in the explosion of the steamer Sophia McLane. It was deemed that he would likely not recover. Whether he did or not is unknown.) A local scandal shook the firm of Holscher & Kagee.

The Sacramento paper reported that John Kagee, a married man, left his wife to run away with a 16-year-old girl. Kagee and the girl fled on a horse belonging to the girl’s mother.

When the pair arrived in Sacramento, they sold the horse at the horse market and boarded a steamer. They ended up in San Jose and were caught up with by a Sacramento lawman. Kagee was arrested on a charge of stealing a horse.

He was about to obtain his release in San Jose. To prevent this from happening, the Sacramento lawman, officer Rice, took the prisoner by foot to San Mateo (13 miles) and from there they found transport to San Francisco, where the girl’s mother met them to pursue the matter. Ackley & Hanson were local wagon makers and blacksmiths. The firm was highly praised for its cultivator, which was purchased by many of the local farmers.

B. Goodwin & H.S. Bonifield were local machinists. They worked on all kinds of agricultural equipment.

There was a new tinware store opposite Williams & March’s store. D.D. Hill was the proprietor. He was prepared to manufacture all goods in that line at the lowest rates.

Three Superior Plows were available for sale at J.W. Donaldson’s, a machinist/blacksmith.

The Morton House had been considerably enlarged, and Mr. and Mrs. T.H. Morton promised to give their full attention to their guests. A bar was on the premises and meals served. This may well be the same Morton mentioned in 1856 when the City Hotel (a.k.a. Farmer’s House) opened its doors in Suisun City. Morton & De Castro were the proprietors. In 1858, Morton was noted as the sole proprietor. Suisun City/Grizzly Island

The office of the Solano Press was moved to the second floor of White’s brick building on Main Street on the west side or opposite the plaza. The paper expanded and there were an increased number of advertisements in the newspaper.

For the first time, the ads were listed under headings such as ‘‘Amusements,’’ ‘‘Legal,” “Hotels,’’ and “Saloons.’‘

Gambler John Doe Edward, better known as “White Headed Jimmy,” was being held to answer charges of gambling. The complaint was filed by a young gambler from Suisun who had lost all his money fighting Edward’s tiger.

Watchmaker and jeweler, William Vuille moved to White’s building. He carried broaches, eardrops, rings, buckles, watches and chains.

Jeweler and watchmaker A.A. Bullard moved to Jacob’s building, formerly named McGarvey’s building, a two-story building. Tin shop owner, Thomas J. McGarvey, who had been a resident for the past eight years or more, had taken off for New York. His wife, Margaret McGarvey, was attempting to obtain a divorce. William Jacobs was a dealer in stoves, tinware, pumps, iron and lead pipe and hardware. It may be assumed that he took over McGarvey’s tinware business, which had long been located in that building. (In 1865, there was mention of a Dr. W. Jacobs collecting the pew fees for the brick church in Fairfield.)

T.H. White & Co. were located in the Jacob’s building and were dealers in linseed, coal, lard, castor, olive and machine oils and every variety of paints and brushes and window glass and putty and they had a large assortment of paper hangings. They also carried an assortment of kitchen utensils.

The City Meat Market was newly opened by John A. Payton (a.k.a. Peyton) and Williams. They were building a structure on a lot adjoining Hemsath’s bakery.

Payton had been a butcher in the area since 1863 when he went into partnership in the Washington Meat Market with J. C. Owen. In 1865, Reeves and Payton were fencing in and ditching a section of tule land on the west side of town. While Payton was corralling some cattle in the tules, he was attacked by a bull and gored in the leg. He was unable to avoid the bull as his horse was sinking in the soft dirt.

Hans Hanson was constructing a building for a furniture store. It was opposite the Pacific House and adjoining the old meat market on the east side of Main Street, which was would materially to “rickety-row.”

Hans was a cabinet worker and he also specialized in making picture frames to order.

Bakery owner F.W. Hemsath was leaving to take up residence in Lake County.

He had owned the Suisun Bakery since at least 1863. In 1863, with a large and improved oven, he was able to bake up cakes for large balls and wedding parties.

In 1864, Miss M. J. Kelley opened a millinery shop in the Hemsath’s building. In 1865, barber William A. Ames moved to the Hemsath building and it was noted that the building was next to the post office.

Upon Hemsath’s departure in 1866, the bakery was taken over by John Miller. H.E. Winters, who manufactured French calf boots along with farmer’s boots, moved to Hemsath’s building, a door north of the bakery.

Apparently Mrs. Hemsath did not leave town with her husband. She opened a millinery store locating in the Hemsath building. (Likely she took over Miss J.J. Kelley’s business).

She was prepared to do all kinds of millinery work, including bleaching, pressing of hats and bonnets, manufacturing of velvet, lace and silk bonnets. Particular attention was paid to mourning bonnets. She also carried a stock of millinery goods in the latest styles.

Photographer Jesse E. Fliggle outfitted a new gallery in the old Eagle Hotel building on Main Street. The Eagle Hotel had a history as being a Chinese brothel in the late 1850s and early 1860s.

During the renovation, a surveyor’s instrument belonging to Woolaver was stolen from Fliggle’s Picture Gallery.

It was only a matter of months when it was announced that A.B. Hamor had rented Fliggle’s Photographic Gallery to produce photographs, ambryotypes, sun-pearls, etc. Photographic albums and pictures of distinguished men and generals were on hand for sale.

The California Steam Navigation Company presented the bell from the ill-fated steamer, Sophia McLane to the Solano Street Church.

The Sophia McLane had exploded at the Suisun Wharf in 1864 killing many. The ladies of the congregation were considering the construction of a tower to hold the bell.

There was talk of a new newspaper starting up that was to be called the Solano Democrat and Dr. W.J. Collier, a printer by trade, was going to take hold of the enterprise.

Collier gave two lectures at the Union Hall on the subject of electrical psychology, talking about a series of experiments illustrating the power of magnetism and demonstrating the fallacy of spiritualism.