Biography of Frederick O. Townsend
Ukiah Township, Mendocino County, CA Biographies





Frederick O. Townsend. Whose portrait appears in this book, is a native of New York, born August 26, 1832. When a child his father moved to St. John, New Brunswick, and engaged in lumbering. In 1851 the subject of this sketch, in company with his brother, Elmer A., came to California, via Panama, arriving in San Francisco in November of the above year. He and brother went to El Dorado county, and there mined for one year; thence to Carson river, Nevada, where they purchased cattle and horses of the emigrants. In the fall of 1852 they took their stock to Solana county; and soon after they disposed of the stock in San Francisco, and returned to Nevada in the spring of 1853. In the following fall they returned to Solano county with a much larger drove, which they disposed of as before, with the exception of some young stock which they retained, and stocked a ranch of about three thousand acres, which they located in the Montezuma Hills of Solano county. They then engaged in Mining on the Cosunines river, in El Dorado county, where they constructed a ditch eight miles in length, for the purpose of facilitating their mining operations, but it proved a losing investment. They retained their interest in the mines and in Solano for about ten years. During this time the subject of this memoir made a trip East; and the brother, Elmer, died in Sacramento in the spring of 1862. In 1861 he purchased five thousand head of cattle in San Joaquin valley; and during the same year he purchased one thousand acres of land near Collinsville, Solano county, which he stocked with sheep. In 1864 he disposed of his sheep; and in 1866 he disposed of his ranch. In 1864 he sustained a heavy loss, about one half of his band of cattle died from the effects of drought; and in 1868 he sold the balance of the herd. During the years of 1867 and 1868 he owned a ranch on the Sacramento river, eight miles below Sacramento, in Bolo county, but sold it in 1869. In 1864 Mr. Townsend came to this county, and dealt in live stock, buying and shipping to San Francisco. On June 24, 1868, he, in company with R. S. Carey, bought a tract of fifteen thousand acres of grazing land, located between the south and middle forks of Eel river; five hundred acres of which is good farming land. They have from eight to ten thousand head of sheep, and about two hundred head of cattle. In 1873 Mr. Townsend changed his residence to this county, where he has since resided in Ukiah. Mr. Townsend was a delegate to the Constitutional Convention that convened at Sacramento in the winter of 1877-8. He married, in 1864, Mary F. Marshall, a native of Missouri Elmer A. and Sallie R., are the names of their children.

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


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