Biography of Matthew Shelbourn
Humboldt County, CA Biographies





MATTHEW SHELBOURN. - The residents of the Mattole valley felt that they had a welcome acquisition to their numbers and a real social gain when Mr. and Mrs. Matthew Shelbourn settled among them in the year 1897, and the friendliness they were first met with has never diminished. Their home is three and a half miles south of Petrolia, on what was formerly the Collins ranch, where Mr. Shelbourn is engaged principally in the stock business. A native of England, he was born July 16, 1866, in Belton, Lincolnshire, and his parents, William and Ann (Singleton) Shelbourn, were also born in that country and died there. The father, a carpenter and builder by calling, lived to the age of seventy eight years, dying in 1904; the mother passed away in. 1906, when seventy three years old. They had a family of ten children, six sons and four daughters, nine of whom reached maturity and only two of whom are in the United States. Mr. Shelbourn's sister, Charlotte Shelbourn, makes her home with himself and wife.

Matthew Shelbourn grew up in his native country and acquired a good education in the public and private schools of Lincolnshire. When he began to work he engaged as a gardener in the employ of Lord Brownlow, and at the age of twenty one years entered the railway service, at first as porter at the stations, gradually working his way through various promotions until he became conductor, on the Great Northern railway line. Altogether he was in railroad work ten years, until he came to America, in the fall of 1897. Meantime he had married, and his wife had two bachelor uncles who owned and lived upon the ranch now occupied by the Shelbourns, George and Joseph Collins, at whose urgent request Mr. and Mrs. Shelbourn left England for this country. They were accompanied to California by Mrs. Shelbourn's mother and brother. The Collins brothers had acquired possession of about seven hundred acres of ranch land in the Mattole valley district of Humboldt county, and besides operating the same the younger, Joseph, acted for several years as assistant keeper at the Cape Mendocino lighthouse, situated off the most westerly point on the mainland of the United States. They were well and favorably known citizens of their section of the county, the Mattole and Eel river valleys, and their sister, Mrs. Gilbert, and her daughter and son in law, the Shelbourns, were hospitably received into the life of the community, into which they entered heartily. George and Joseph Collins are now deceased, and their property is now owned by Mr. and Mrs. Shelbourn, who have maintained high standing among their fellow citizens by their substantial character and many admirable qualities.

Forest View Farm, as the ranch is appropriately named, is located on Mattole river about three miles south of Petrolia and besides being supplied by the Mattole is well watered by numerous mountain springs and streams, one of these having two natural water falls of fifty and twenty five feet respectively. From the pool above the lower falls is obtained the water supply for domestic use by piping a distance of about eight hundred feet, thus giving the purest of mountain water. In 1906 a new residence was erected, which is large and commodious and modern in all its appointments. The larger portion of the ranch is open grazing land with smaller areas studded with fir, pine, laurel or pepperwood and tanoak, and it is further beautified by profuse growths of many varieties of ferns including the maidenhair. The ranch takes its name from the beautiful view of the forests on all sides, a gem in its beautiful setting.

At Peterborough, England, June 17, 1895, Mr. Shelbourn was married, being united with Miss Alice Gilbert, a native of Peterborough. She is the daughter of William and Kezia (Collins) Gilbert, natives of Sibsey, Lincolnshire. The father was an engineer on the Great Northern Railway until his death at the age of forty six, and as stated above her mother now makes her home with Mrs. Shelbourn. Of the three children born to Mr. and Mrs. Gilbert only two are living, Mrs. Shelbourn and her brother, Charles William Gilbert, who is assisting Mr. Shelbourn in his cattle raising enterprise. Mr. and Mrs. Shelbourn had one child, Edward, who died in infancy. They are firm believers in the principles of the Republican party, believing that its policy is for the best interests of the whole country. The family are members of St. Mary's Episcopal Church at Ferndale. Mr. Shelbourn is a member of Active Lodge No. 379, Ferndale, and Mattole Lodge No. 92, K. P., at Petrolia, of which he is past chancellor commander and as a delegate attended the Grand Lodge at San Francisco in 1915. He has always been interested in the cause of education and is serving as a member of the board of trustees of the Petrolia school district.

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


Privacy Policy for OnlineBiographies

NAVIGATION

Humboldt County, CA
Biographies

California
Biographies

Online
Biographies

New York
Histories

New York
Biographies

Maine
Histories

Pennsylvania
Histories

Pennsylvania
Biographies

For all your genealogy needs visit Linkpendium

Family Tree Maker 2012