Biography of Daniel Hallaran
Humboldt County, CA Biographies





DANIEL HALLARAN. - Of the officials who are engaged in looking after the welfare of Eureka none is more earnest in his endeavors than Daniel Hallaran, who since January, 1861, has resided here, and now represents the first ward as a member of the city council. He has been associated with the Vance Lumber Company and its successors, the Hammond Lumber Company, since' 1867, originally as foreman of the mill and yards until the mill was destroyed by fire, and since that time as manager of the local yard.

Of Irish birth and ancestry, born August 8, 1840, Mr. Hallaran was only five years of age at the time he was brought to the United States, and during boyhood he was a pupil in the public schools of Springfield, Mass. At the age of fifteen, in 1855 he went to sea, shipping in the whaling bark Montezuma. From New Bedford he cruised around the Western or Azore Islands after whales for about three months, touching at Fayal Harbor several times for water. After capturing two whales they started for the Rio de la Plata, where they captured a large sperm whale. They then put in at St. Catharina, Brazil, for water, and started for a trip around the Horn, intending to cruise in the Arctic, but in a storm off the Rio de la Plata the bark sprung a leak and the captain headed her for New Bedford, while the crew worked the pumps the entire way. During the year 1856 Mr. Hallaran shipped as a boy on the clipper ship John Gilpin from New York city, bound for San Francisco around Cape Horn, the voyage of one hundred fifty days being passed without special incident. Its most exciting moment was the hour of landing in San Francisco (in the fall of 1856), then in the throes of the civic upheaval caused by the vigilance committee. Shipping in the United States revenue cutter Jeff Davis for Puget Sound, he witnessed many exciting scenes during the Indian troubles in Washington and saw the great Indian chief Lushi brought on board the ship in double irons, a prisoner, to be consigned to authorities at Olympia. Six months were spent in the northwest in the United States service and during that period he saw much of the country, passing through Seattle when it was an insignificant hamlet of three hundred persons.

Returning to San Francisco from Washington and exchanging government service for industrial pursuits, Mr. Hallaran found employment in the oil and camphor distillery of R. F. Knox located on Rincon point, in what is now South San Francisco, and continued there until the works were shut down. He then found work in a sawmill back of Redwood City, remaining there until he started for the mines at Oroville, Butte county. During 1858 he followed the stream of mining emigration to the Frazier river, but soon returned to the Oroville mines. Next he went to Siskiyou county and mined on the Klamath river, but he was not very successful. The winter of 1859-60 was spent in Stockton. The first trip he ever made to Eureka occurred in January of 1861, when he found a small seaport village whose entire business was concentrated on First street. After working for a lumber concern for some months in 1862 he went to the Salmon river of the north and engaged in prospecting, thence to Elk City and from there went on to the Big Hole excitement, where he prospected about three weeks when the stormy season came on and he had to get out of there on account of the snow. Returning to Elk City, he mined until the end of the season, and then made his way back to Eureka in the fall of the same year, resuming employment in his former capacity. When he left the second time it was for the purpose of revisiting his old home in the east, but after he had spent the greater part of 1864 in Massachusetts he returned to Eureka and secured a position in the mill of the Dolbeer Carson Lumber Company. Very early in 1866 he again left for the mines, this time spending almost two years at Idaho City, and returning in October of 1867 to establish a permanent home at Eureka. During the more than half a century he has been associated with the business interests of Eureka Mr. Hallaran has been optimistic for its future and his investments have proven the wisdom of his judgment. He is now in the afternoon of life and in possession of valuable property which gives him an ample income. Several times he had worked here and as many times sought other places temporarily, only to come back to the seaport town of Humboldt county with an affectionate longing for the quiet place of his former association. These trips into various parts of the country had given him a healthful life in the open and stimulated his love of nature, at the same time lending the color of romance to his young manhood, but as a permanent abiding place he has been content to select Eureka, on Humboldt Bay, and here he has lived busily and happily ever since his marriage in 1867. The people honor him for his worth of character and integrity of life.

In the Democratic party Mr. Hallaran has been prominent and a local leader, however his election to the city council was made on the independent ticket in 1907, 1909, 1911 and 1913 and he is now serving his fourth term. He has been a firm believer in municipal ownership of public utilities and was always in favor of the city buying and operating the water works. Since becoming a member of the council he has had opportunity to enlist the aid of others, the result being the calling of an election in which the people voted the bonds necessary and the purchase of the water system was accomplished, thus giving the city and people a valuable asset that is continually enhancing in value. In addition he also served as library trustee for some time. By his marriage to Mary O'Brien he became the father of ten children. Mary is the wife of John Clancy; Nora died in her nineteenth year; John is an electrician; Daniel is employed at the Toggery; Arthur died when twenty six years of age; Frank and Esther were twins; the former died at twenty five years and Esther is now Mrs. Peters of San Francisco; George is a resident of Fort Bragg; Alfred and Edmund are twins, the former assistant manager of the Hammond Lumber Company yards, while the latter is employed in the United States Engineer's office in Eureka. Mr. Hallaran was bereaved by the death of his beloved wife and helpmate January 29, 1915.

During Mr. Hallaran's first term as councilman the mayor and council issued a signed invitation to Mr. Harriman, president of the Southern Pacific Railroad, to visit Eureka in the hope of interesting him to the point of extending the road from the south into Eureka. This was the beginning of a movement that culminated in the completion of the railroad to Eureka in October, 1914.

From:
History of Humboldt County, California
With a Biographical Sketches
History by Leigh H. Irving
Historic Record Company
Los Angeles, California 1915


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