Biography of John W. Parker
Napa County, CA Biographies





JOHN W. PARKER.
Among the native sons of Napa county and the city of Napa who have been witnesses of and active participants in the wonderful transformation which has taken place here in the last three or four decades, John W. Parker is entitled to special mention, for practically his entire active life has been identified with one of the most important branches of the city's public service, the water system, and there is no one who has a more intimate knowledge of all the details connected with it.

Mr. Parker was born in Napa on the 24th of December, 1877, and he is a son of Theodore R. and Eliza (Cate) Parker, the former a native of New York state and the latter of New Hampshire, from which respective states they came to California in early life and were married here. The father early took charge of the Marysville gas plant, having learned the trade of a gas fitter, and remained there for many years. In the early '70s he came to Napa and here had charge of both the gas works and the old water system up to the time of his death, which occurred in 1911

John W. Parker secured his education in the public schools and in the private school at Oak Mound and also attended the first school held in Napa. He then went to work under his father at the gas plant, and he remembers that as a boy he would light the old gas lamps from the back of his pony and that when the moon rose he was required to go around and turn the gas off. For this service he received fifteen dollars a month and had to feed the pony himself. He also worked on the water system for a time and then for about six years was in the employ of a mining company, during which period he was required to make a trip to Europe. At the time of his father's death he undertook the management of the old water system, and when the city took it over he was retained as superintendent, in which position he has served continuously to the present time. Thus he has actually grown up with the water system of Napa and has seen it transformed from a pumping direct pressure system to a gravity system. He is well qualified in every respect to superintend the city's water service, for, as has been noted, he understands better than anyone else every detail of the plant 'and equipment.

Mr. Parker was married to Miss Amy G. Wilson, who was born and reared in Napa, and they are the parents of a daughter, Amy June. Politically Mr. Parker is not bound by party ties but votes according to the dictates of his judgment. He is a member of the Free and Accepted Masons and the Native Sons of the Golden West. A public spirited citizen, he lends his aid in the furtherance of all movements having for their object the general upbuilding of the community whose interests he has ever had at heart. He is widely known throughout this part of the county and enjoys the sincere respect and good will of all who know him.

From:
History of Solano County, California
BY: Marguerite Hune
and Napa County, California
BY: Harry Lawrence Gunn
The S. J. Clarke Publishing Co.
Chicago 1926


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