To William Rippey, successful farmer, grading contractor and efficient road superintendent, residing in Vacaville,
belongs the distinction of being the oldest native son of Solano county. He was born in the Suisun valley on the
27th of May, 1858, and is a son of Samuel E. and Polly Ann (Perry) Rippey, the father a native of Missouri and
the mother of Kentucky, and both of whom are now deceased. In 1855 the father crossed the plains, by ox team, and
on arriving in this state first turned his attention to mining at Volcano. Later he came to the Suisun valley and
farmed for a while, but in 1861 he went to Elmira and took up a tract of government land, which he operated for
some time. From there he moved to the Vaca valley and finally to Winters. He was a fine man and wherever he lived
he was accorded the respect and esteem of his neighbors. To him and his wife were born twelve children, six sons
and six daughters, of which number seven are living.
William Rippey was given but limited educational advantages, attending public school for a short time in Elmira.
He was the eldest son and his assistance was required in the support of the family. At the age of sixteen years
he started out on his own account, securing employment on the Gates ranch, where he remained for three years, after
which he went to the Vaca valley and engaged in raising fruit. For over thirty six years he has rented a ranch
of eighty acres, seventy acres of which he cleared and planted to fruit. Mr. Rippey is also a grading contractor,
clearing and leveling land for orchards, alfalfa planting and other purposes, having done a large amount of work
in this line. He graded the streets of Vacaville preliminary to the paving of them and he is now rendering efficient
and appreciated service as road superintendent of his district, having thirty miles of county roads under his jurisdiction,
which he keeps in first class condition.
In 1879 Mr. Rippey was married to Miss Mary Christopher, who was born and reared in Sacramento, and they are the
parents of three children, Ray, Alta and Ella. Fraternally he is a member of the Independent Order of Odd Fellows
and the Improved Order of Red Men.
History of Solano County, California
BY: Marguerite Hune
Napa County, California
BY: Harry Lawrence Gunn
The S. J. Clarke Publishing Co.
Solano County, CA
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