Biography of Edward O. Webb
Alameda County, CA Biographies





EDWARD OTIS WEBB
One of Hayward's most successful and highly respected citizens is Edward Otis Webb, who, after a long and active career, is now retired, spending the golden sunset years of life in well earned leisure in his beautiful home on Soto street. A native of New Bedford, Massachusetts, he was born August 31, 1851, and is a son of Otis and Deborah (Cory) Webb, also natives of Massachusetts, the former born at Lynn and the latter at Long Plain. Otis Webb was reared and educated in the Old Bay state and then went to sea on a whaling vessel. He and his brother Hiram brought the first vessel to the west coast after the discovery of gold in California. Leaving the eastern seaboard with a cargo of provisions, they stopped at Valparaiso, Chile, where they took on a load of lumber, and reached San Francisco on New Year's day of 1849. They utilized their lumber in building a store; in which they put their stock of provisions, conducting the store for a short time. Later they made a number of trips with their boat to the Arctic regions, and when they dissolved partnership Hiram remained on the Pacific coast, while Otis Webb returned east, making the trip overland. He then took his family on a tour through Europe, visiting all of the principal cities, and in 1876 again came west, locating in San Lorenzo, Alameda county, where his death occurred. He was a republican in his political views and was a man of marked ability and fine character.

Edward Otis Webb was reared and educated in his native state and in 1870 came west, locating first in Oregon, where he was employed on the engineering staff of the Oregon & California Railroad, which was then controlled by Ben Holiday. Two years later he returned east and made the trip to Europe on the "Glory of the Sea", commanded by Captain Knowles. In 1868 his father bought one hundred acres of land bordering on East Fourteenth street in San Lorenzo, and when E. O. Webb came west in 1872 he engaged in farming and fruit raising, developing the land into one of the best ranches in this section of the county. In the course of time it became very valuable, being located near the heart of the business district. He lived on this place for fifty three years, or until 1926, when he sold it and moved into the splendid home which he had built at 107 Soto street, where he now resides. For the past ten years he has been a director of the Bank of Hayward and its vice president for the past four years.

In 1898 Mr. Webb married Miss Henrietta Lehnhart, who was born in San Francisco and is a daughter of Henry and Julia Lehnhart, both of whom were natives of Germany. They came to California in an early day, settling first in San Francisco, where the father was connected with Halbrook, Merrill and Company, hardware dealers. Both parents are now deceased. Mr. and Mrs. Webb have two children, Otis, and Deborah, who graduated from the University of California in 1928. Mr. Webb is a republican in his political views and has been actively interested in the educational affairs of his community, having served as a trustee of the Hayward high school district for thirty four years, during thirty years of which period he has been president of the board. A man of marked business ability, sterling integrity of character and strong personality, he has long been numbered among Hayward's most influential and substantial citizens and no resident of this community commands public confidence and respect to a greater degree.

From:
History of Alameda County, California
BY: Frank Clinton Merritt
The S. J. Clarke Publishing Co.
Chicago, Ill 1928


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