Peter Berges, proprietor of the American French Laundry, in Alameda, has exemplified in his career the fact that
success may be attained through persistent and determined effort, backed by right principles, and today he is numbered
among the leading business men of his community. Mr. Berges was born on the 5th of September, 1874, in the Pyranees
mountains of the Basque district, on the border between France and Spain, and was there reared to the age of eighteen
years. After attending public school, he learned the trade of stone cutting, at which he worked until 1892, when
he came to the United States, locating in San Francisco, California, where he was employed at his trade for a short
time and then went to work in a French hand laundry at 829 Sutter street. He also worked in a French laundry in
East Oakland, and later owned a laundry there for two years. About thirty years ago he came to Alameda and bought
Mrs. Thompson's laundry on Encinal street, to the operation of which he has given his attention to the present
time. When he assumed control of the place four persons were employed, but the business has enjoyed a steady increase
in volume and now twelve persons are employed, and the equipment of the plant has been modernized in every respect,
steam being largely utilized in its operation. The laundry now occupies a splendid new building, erected by Mr.
Berges, which is well adapted to the purpose to which it is devoted. Mr. Berges has been prospered in his material
affairs and is also the owner of two other valuable properties in Alameda.
Mr. Berges was united in marriage to Miss Jennie Muton, of San Francisco, and to them have been born two daughters,
Louise, who taught for six years in the public schools and is now the wife of Edward Chaponot, and Lorine, who
is a student in the University of California, where she is preparing for teaching. Mr. Berges is a member of the
Foresters of America and the Lafayette Club of Oakland. He was made an American citizen in 1912 and has been loyal
in every respect to his adopted country. He has in all of his business affairs shown sound judgment and keen foresight,
recognizing the fact that only high grade service will retain the patronage of the public, and he has well merited
the prosperity which has crowned his efforts.
History of Alameda County, California
BY: Frank Clinton Merritt
The S. J. Clarke Publishing Co.
Chicago, Ill 1928
Alameda County, CA
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