Biography of Edward F. Kingman
Riverside County, CA Biographies





EDWARD FRANKLIN KINGMAN
For the period of little more than a quarter of a century the late Edward F. Kingman labored for the development of the many resources and for the general moral advancement of the citizens of Riverside and at his passing the city lost another of those pioneers who seldom thought of self when the welfare of their home city and county was in question. Mr. Kingman was born in Brockton, Mass., August 23, 1851, and received a fairly good academic education at his home city and at Bridgewater and later took a business course in Boston. Thus equipped for supporting himself he secured a position as a clerk in a store in Boston, where he remained until ill health necessitated a removal to a milder climate and in 1876 he made a trip to Southern California in search of a location where he could have employment out of doors and in this way regain his health and strength. Never robust, he, however recovered from his ailment and was spared for many years.

When Mr. Kingman first arrived in Riverside he went to the home of an old time acquaintance, E. W. Holmes, where he remained until he could make a decision as to location. This was soon done and resulted in the purchase of sixteen and two thirds acres of land on Rubidoux avenue; this tract he set to oranges and erected a home for his family, which was his residence at the time of his death on December 15, 1902. He had married while a resident of Massachusetts, Miss Laura Howe Pickens, who was born December 3, 1853, in Middleboro, in which city she was married June 16, 1875. She joined her husband in California in October of 1877 and has since been a resident of Riverside, remaining at the original home place until 1911, when she disposed of the orange grove and is now located nearer the central part of the city. There were four children born to this worthy couple. Louise P. is the wife of Rev. John McL. Gardner and is living in Riverside; George A. is engaged in the real estate and insurance business; Lucy H. is living with her mother ; and Alice Frances died when four years of age.

Always ready to serve his adopted city in any capacity that he thought would advance her interests Mr. Kingman was persuaded to become a candidate for trustee and in 1892 was elected for a term of four years, after which, in 1896, he was re elected and was made president of that body, which he served for the following terms in the council that much street work was done; bonds for four years, his term expiring April 16, 1900. It was during his the electric light plant were voted and expended; the electric street railroad franchise was granted and the road built and put in operation; the first public drinking fountains for horses were erected, and many of the progressive movements put on foot to advance the interests of the city and establish a moral uplift for the citizens. He always stood for the keeping of the Sabbath and for the closing of all places of questionable character and for promoting everything that was calculated to promote the moral betterment of the place. His career was always open to the scrutiny of all, but his integrity was never questioned. By his gentleness of manner, his quiet persistence, his self forgetfulness and tact he avoided enmities and accomplished many worthy ends. After he retired from office he embarked in the insurance business, continuing this until his death.

Mr. Kingman was always active in church work and was the first superintendent of the first Sunday school established south of the city, in the valley, and when the first Congregational church was erected in the city he was the first Sunday school superintendent. For many years he was a trustee and a deacon in the church and supported the charities of that denomination liberally. In summing up the career of Edward F. Kingman it may be said he was in every sense a good citizen, firm in his opinions once formed, and never allowed himself to be swerved from the path of duty as he saw it, by friendship, clamor or partisan bias. He was always alert in the discharge of his responsibilities and his endorsement of things he believed to be intended to promote the public good was always intelligent and convincing. The social and domestic side of his life was pleasing and affectionate and he enjoyed the confidence and respect of his friends. His passing was sincerely mourned by all classes of citizens.

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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