Biography of G. A. Strout
Big River Township County, CA Biographies





G. A. STROUT.
The interesting and active career of this well known citizen of Sebastopol began in his birthplace, Bradford, Me., where he was born in 1846, and was continued in Illinois, Minnesota, North Dakota and Oregon before he finally came to Sonoma county, Cal., in 1890. Reared and primarily educated in his birthplace, he subsequently went to Bangor, Me., and became a carpenter's apprentice, learning the trade in all of its details. At the age of twenty one, with the confidence born of youth, he started out from the home of his parents determined thenceforth to make his own way in the world, a determination which never weakened and which has its reward today in the knowledge that all he has is the result of his own unwearied exertion.

From Maine Mr. Strout went first to Chicago, Ill., where he took an examination for school teacher, and out of twenty one applicants he was the only one to pass the examination. The school assigned him was in Elk Grove, Cook county, twenty two miles from Chicago, where he completed one term as teacher, after which he went to Minneapolis, Minn., and there made the first practical use of the trade which he had learned, working at the carpenter's trade for the St. Paul & Pacific Railroad for about four years. From there he went to Fargo, N. Dak., where he took charge of a crew of men who were constructing a bridge over the Red River of the North, and when this was completed he became foreman of the buildings on the Northern Pacific Railroad, under the direction of the chief engineer of the road, Thomas L. Rosser, and while so employed, erected a three story hotel which was the first building of any importance in Fargo. This was used as Mr. Rosser's headquarters while there. Subsequently the building was destroyed by fire. Besides the work which the position of foreman of building involved, Mr. Strout also had charge of the carpenter construction on the road for some years, as well as doing general contracting work in Fargo.

Being offered a good business chance in Oregon in the construction of grain elevators in Round Valley and Pomeroy, he went to that locality from North Dakota and entered upon the work for which his varied experience had so well qualified him. The failing health of his wife, however, was the means of his giving up much of the work which he had expected to do, and upon his return to North Dakota, where his wife had remained during his absence, he made plans to come to California. With his wife and family he came to the west the same year, 1890, and in 1892 located in Sebastopol. This was the year in which the town was incorporated and in the new life which this honor gave to the town he readily found work at his trade. After working at the carpenter's trade for three years he started the planing mill of which he is now the proprietor, his specialty being the manufacture of step ladders, fruit driers and fruit trays.

Mr. Strout's first marriage was with Miss Mary L. Trott, who was a native of Maine, and who died in California in 1890, soon after coming to the state. Five sons were born of this marriage, as follows: Elmer, a graduate of the University of Minnesota and a practicing physician and surgeon in Winthrop, Minh.; Ernest, a graduate of Stanford University, Palo Alto, Cal., and now general manager of a mine in Mexico; Archie, who is a graduate of the University of California at Berkeley and is now associated with his father in the mill in Sebastopol; Gale, a graduate of Stanford University and a civil engineer by profession; and William, a resident of San Francisco. Mr. Strout's second marriage, in 1892, united him with Miss Millie L. Saunders, a native of Oregon, but a resident of California the greater part of her life. At her death in 1908 she left five children, Irmo. Sylver, Hazel, Zeno and Mervin. In whatever community Mr. Strout has made his home he has entered heartily into its welfare and done his part in its upbuilding as any good citizen should do. While In North Dakota he served as city trustee of Lisbon and Fargo, was county commissioner of Cass county, and also served in the capacity of department superintendent of public instruction. His interest in his later home in California has been no less ardent, and for four years he served as one of the trustees of Sebastopol. For many years Mr. Strout has enjoyed membership in the Masonic fraternity, having joined the order in 1873.

From:
History of Sonoma County, California
With a Biographical Review
History by Tom Gregory
Historic Record Company
Los Angeles, California 1911


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