JOHN BARTON O'BRIEN
One of the successful younger attorneys in the city of San Francisco is John Barton O'Brien, with offices in the
Mills building, who is ably carrying on the traditions of a family name known conspicuously in the local bar for
Mr. O'Brien was born in San Francisco, August 4, 1900, and is a son of the late J. P. O'Brien and his wife, Theresa
(Anson) O'Brien. His paternal grandfather, Martin O'Brien, crossed the western plains in a covered wagon in 1850,
and for many years was in the employ of the San Francisco Chronicle, and in charge of a circulation route. J. P.
O'Brien, his son and later distinguished lawyer and jurist in the west, was born in San Francisco. He attended
the Lincoln grammar school, and then studied law in the office of that nationally known firm of Delmas & Bull.
He located in Sonora, Tuolumne county, California, for seven years, where he was counsel for railroad and banking
interests. Later, he went to Nevada and became judge of the fifth judicial district of that state. Subsequently,
he returned to San Francisco, where he engaged with eminent success in the practice of law until the time of his
death in 1928. He was a member of all the bar associations, the Benevolent and Protective Order of Elks, and the
Knights of Columbus. His widow, Theresa (Anson) O'Brien, was born in Meridian, California, a daughter of Barton
Anson, now deceased, who came across the plains behind an ox team in 1849. He conducted a hotel in Colusa county,
and also operated the famous old Thompson ranch, where he planted the first Thompson seedless grapes in the state.
Mrs. O'Brien is also related to the late Captain Pop Anson, famous baseball player of earlier years and head of
the noted Chicago baseball club. Mrs. O'Brien survives her husband.
John Barton O'Brien attended St. Joseph's Academy and Santa Clara College, and then took up the study of law at
St. Ignatius College (now San Francisco University). He received his legal degree from this institution in 1926,
and in the same year was admitted to the California state bar. His first practice was in association with his honored
father, but since the latter's death he has engaged in legal work alone. Although he has been active before the
local bar for comparatively few years, he has made extraordinary progress in his profession and is generally considered
to have a most promising future. Fraternally he is affiliated with San Francisco Lodge, No. 3, Benevolent and Protective
Order of Elks, while along strictly professional lines he has membership in the Bar Association of San Francisco.
The History of San Francisco, California
Lewis Francis Byington, Supervising Editor
Oscar Lewis, Associate Editor
The S. J. Clark Publishing Company
Chicago-San Francisco 1931
San Francisco, CA
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