Biography of Martin Hoover
Riverside County, CA Biographies





MARTIN HOOVER
While not having the distinction of being one of the pioneers of Riverside, the city had been founded but ten years when Mr. Hoover came hither and ever since then he has been identified with its development, having been for twenty seven years the owner of the same orange grove, a highly cultivated and productive tract situated on Magnolia avenue. At the time of his arrival in 1880 property was still low and he was able to buy twenty acres without large outlay of money. Orange trees were bought and planted and when the grove came into bearing it proved a profitable venture, returning large dividends on the original investment and subsequent expenditure. It was not until January of 1907, when advancing years rendered continued exertion unwise, that the owner consented to part with the homestead and since he sold out he has lived in retirement, enjoying the companionship of the friends of olden days as well as the respect of the younger generation. He served as a member of the board of the Riverside Water Company for years. For twenty seven years he has officiated as an elder in the Arlington Avenue Presbyterian Church and meanwhile he has been a leader in the manifold missionary movements of that society. On the organization of the city of Riverside he was chosen a member of the board of trustees and aided in establishing wisely and well the county's official and financial system. It was from a small beginning and with crude implements that the present beautiful city with her unsurpassed streets, has sprung.

The Hoover family comes of old eastern stock. Martin, Sr., a native of Franklin county, Pa., born in the year 1796, spent much of his active life in that locality, where he conducted a grist mill, a woolen factory and a country store. The destruction of the plant by fire in 1842 left him without means. Seeking a new start he went to Ohio and settled at Dalton, where he carried on a grocery business. Thirteen years after going to that place he removed to Illinois and in 1855 became a resident of Galesburg, where he engaged with his sons in the grocery business, continuing in the same occupation until his death in 1870. Among the children born to his union with Mary Snively, a native of Pennsylvania, there was a son who bore his father's name and who like him was a native of Franklin county Born January 20, 1830, he was sent to the, public schools of his native county from the age of six to that of twelve years, after which he was a pupil for a few years in the schools of Dalton, Ohio.

At the time of the discovery of gold in California and the migration thither of gold seekers Martin Hoover determined to come to the then unknown west. With two of his brothers in the spring of 1850 he started across the plains and in the autumn of the same year he arrived in the northern part of the state. At once he began to try his luck in the mines and until 1865 he continued at the occupation, mainly working in Placer and Plumas counties. Meanwhile he had experienced the ups and downs of a miner's life and had accepted successes and reverses with equal composure. In 1865 he returned to the east and joined his parents who had established their home in Galesburg, Ill., and in that city he and a brother with their father's assistance conducted a large trade as grocers. In 1872 he disposed of his interest in the store and removed to Kansas, where he embarked in the grocery business at Leavenworth. A fair degree of success came to him there, but the climate was not entirely satisfactory and in 1880 he sold out in order to seek a more congenial environment at Riverside.

Ten years before he came west Mr. Hoover established domestic ties, having been united in marriage with Miss Kate E. Craven, November 23, 1870; at Winfield, Henry county, Iowa. No children came to bless their union, so that they are deprived of the pleasure of utilizing their ample means for the benefit of descendants. Other opportunities for helpfulness, however, are ever open to them and of these they have availed themselves to the utmost. No worthy person has been denied in an appeal for aid. With quiet and unostentatious generosity they have helped many in temporary distress and urgent need. The principles of the Republican party have received the support of Mr. Hoover, who served on the first board of supervisors as that party's choice. A man of striking personality, erect in stature and genial in manner, he bears his years with graceful dignity and his calm and benevolent countenance shows little trace of the stress and strain of life's stirring activities.

From:
History of Riverside County, California
With a Biographical Review
History by Elmer Wallace Holmes
And other well known writers
Historic Record Company
Los Angeles, California 1912


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