The material development of San Leandro received a decided impulse when the Ostrom Brothers, George T. and Alvin
C., came here and started their real estate operations, which have not only been on a large scale but have been
of a character that has reflected great credit on their business acumen and artistic tastes. Their properties lie
in the choicest section of the city, and their enterprising and up to date methods have been rewarded with a commensurate
measure of success.
George T. Ostrom was born in Franklin, New Jersey, while Alvin C. Ostrom was born in State Center, Iowa, and they
are the sons of Rev. Alvin and Frances M. (Pierce) Ostrom, the latter of whom was a first cousin of President Franklin
Pierce. The Ostrom family is of Dutch origin and in Holland was known as Van Oostrom. The father was a foreign
missionary of the Congregational church and was stationed in China for many years. On his final return to the United
States he was assigned to home mission work in Oakland and other parts of California, and he organized a number
of congregations, serving various charges in this state. He was then sent to the Hawaiian islands and while actively
engaged in the work of the ministry of the Congregational church he died there at the age of sixty five years.
He was a learned and able man, an effective worker and a consistent Christian and commanded the respect and esteem
of all who knew him. After his death his widow returned to Oakland, California, where her death occurred. To them
were born six children.
George T. and Alvin C. Ostrom were students in Hopkins Academy at Oakland when their parents went to Hawaii, and
after finishing there Alvin C. entered Rutgers College, while George T. engaged in mining in western Colorado,
where he was joined by his brother after the latter had completed his college course. In 1897 they went to Alaska
for the purpose of engaging in gold mining, George locating at Nome and Alvin at Dawson. They returned to the States
in 1901, at which time Alvin located in Oakland, while George engaged in real estate operations in Idaho Alvin
Ostrom was for seventeen years in the employ of the Key System in Oakland as a civil engineer and in June, 1925,
the two brothers came to San Leandro, where they have successfully operated ever since as subdividers, builders,
real estate agents and sellers of insurance. The firm consists of the two Ostrom brothers and Edward F. Wolcott.
They are the builders of the splendid new Mission apartments, at the corner of Garcis avenue and East Fourteenth
street. This is an up to date, modern cement and brick structure, three stories high and containing seven stores
and twenty four apartments, all of which are completely furnished. They are developing the following subdivisions:
The Garcia Avenue tract of ten acres; the West Broadmoor tract of ten acres, and the Franklin tract of four acres,
and on these tracts they have erected forty six houses, no two of which are alike and all of which are more than
ordinarily attractive, both inside and out. In their operations they have set the pace for all who may follow them
in development work, for they have neglected nothing and have in many cases sacrificed profits for the sake of
utility, and those who are familiar with the scope and character of their work are loud in their praise of their
progressive spirit and their genuine interest in the progress of the community.
The Ostrom brothers are members of the Chambers of Commerce at San Leandro and Oakland, and in politics they support
the republican party. George T. Ostrom is a member of the Ancient Free and Accepted Masons. Because of their fine
business record here, their culture and agreeable personalities, they have won a high place in public esteem and
have made many loyal friends throughout this locality.
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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