Biography of Pierce Asbill
Round Valley Township, Mendocino County, CA Biographies





Pierce Asbill, This gentleman and pioneer, whose portrait will be found in the body of this work, was born in Howard county, Missouri, October 17, 1835. In 1844 he, with his parents, crossed the plains to Oregon, where the family resided till March, 1849. They then moved to California and began mining in El Dorado county, where they remained for about two years. They then moved to Sonoma county in 1851 and settled near Bodega. In April, 1854, the subject of this sketch and his brother, Frank K, left home, and shortly after fell into company with Samuel Kelsey and three others, who were just starting for the mines on the south fork of Trinity river. The party proceeded up Russian river and crossed the south fork of Eel river, and over Sanhedrim mountain, and down into Eden valley, which name was given to it by Mr. Asbill, as it reminded him very much of the descriptions he had read of the garden of Eden and its environments. After passing through Eden valley they proceeded as far as the middle fork of Eel river, where they camped for the night. On the morning of May 15, 1854, Frank M Asbill went up on the mountain side in search of the horses, and a wonderfully beautiful valley met his gaze, upon which, probably, no white man's eye had ever rested before. He looked and feasted his eyes upon its beauty. He observed the fact that it was almost completely round in its contour. Upon his return to camp he gave such a glowing description of the new found valley that the party determined to enter it and spy out its wondrous beauty. It was given the name of Round valley by the party from Mr. Asbill's description of it. After breakfast the horses were saddled and they passed over into and through the valley, and had a hard fight with the Indians, killing about forty of them in one of their camps. The party then passed on into Trinity county, where the Asbill brothers remained together till 1856. Pierce then returned to Bodega, coming by the way of Sacramento. He remained with his parents about one week, when he came to Mendocino county, and after spending a season in Ukiah valley went into Potter valley, where he remained till the fall of 1858. He then returned to Shasta county, where he remained until the spring of 1860, when he, in company with his brother and several others, went into Humboldt county and took up an extensive ranch, which they held for two years. In the fall of 1862 the Ashill brothers disposed of their interests in the ranch and engaged in hunting until 1864, when they located a ranch in Summit valley, Mendocino county, which they still own, consisting of six thousand acres. They have it stocked with about fifteen thousand head of sheep, two hundred head of cattle, and one hundred and fifty head of horses and mules. Mr. Asbill is a thorough going gentleman, and is generous to a fault. Enterprising and full of business, honorable and upright. Mr. Asbill was married, September 12, 1880, to Miss Katie E. Robertson.

From:
History of Mendocino County, California
Alley, Bowen & Co., Publishers
San Francisco, California 1880


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