HON. H. PETERSEN is one of the leading business men of Templeton, San Luis Obispo County, California. He is
a native of Hamburg, Germany, born July 5, 1840. His parents, Adolph and Augusta Peterson, were Germans who emigrated
to the United States, in 1855, bringing their family of six children with them, the subject of this sketch being
the second child of the family. They settled near Davenport, Iowa, on a farm of 150 acres, which they bought. They
built a home on the property, and made other improvements.
Mr. Petersen had received his education in Germany and was fifteen years of age when they came to America. When
he began life for himself, he had twelve dollars. He engaged in farming on shares, and continued it until 1868,
when he moved west to Grundy County, and purchased 160 acres of prairie land, at five dollars per acre. Here he
built a house and improved the property, and lived for fifteen years. At this time the railroad was built to Heinbeck,
and Mr. Petersen moved into town, and opened a hardware and agricultural implement business. He built one store
and purchased another, and did a prosperous business until 1886, when he sold out. He was elected a member of the
Twenty first General Assembly by the Democratic party, while there, and served the term of office with credit to
himself and his constituents. In the spring of 1886 he visited California, and traveled the State over, looking
for a place to settle. In 1887 he came to San Luis Obispo County, and invested in 200 acres of land near Templeton
and bought two village lots. In October, 1888, he brought his family to their new home. He bought the hardware
business of Mr. E. Griffith, the principal business of the place. It had been started in the spring of 1887. Mr.
Petersen has since continued the business, and has made a success of it. He deals in both hardware and agricultural
implements, and his trade extends out for twenty six miles. His lands are rented and he is getting a share of the
crops. He has engaged, to some extent, in the culture of fruit on his lands, principally French prunes.
Mr. Petersen was married in Iowa, in 1863, to Miss M. Klein, a native of Saxony, and of German parentage. They
have had ten children, seven of whom are living, viz: Teresa, Ida, Antonette, Henryetta, Carl, Rudolph, and Hubert,
all born in Iowa. Teresa and Antonetta are married, one in Kansas, and the other in San Bernardino, California.
Mr. and Mrs. Petersen are Lutherans, and he is an Odd Fellow. He is still a member of the Democratic party; is
a man having well defined business and political ideas; has a general information on all topics; gives his business
close personal attention; and is withal a worthy citizen and desirable acquisition to the new town in which he
has cast his lot.
A Memorial and Biographical History
of the counties of
Santa Barbara, San Luis Obispo
and Ventura, California
The Lewis Publishing Company
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