CYRUS R. GURDY.
Among the personal factors that in recent years have done much toward promoting the substantial development of
the city of Porterville and of this section of California the name of Cyrus It. Gurdy, a well established contractor,
widely known as "the cement man" of Porterville, must be given high place, for he has done much in the
way of real substantial building hereabout, streets, highways, sidewalks, bridges and buildings throughout Tulare
county carrying the unmistakable evidences of the extent and high character of his operations. For nearly twenty
years Mr. Gurdy has been a resident of Porterville. He came here an experienced cement man in 1907 and became the
foreman of the operations of one of the leading cement contractors and manufacturers in this section of the state
and was for ten years thus occupied, during that time superintending some of the biggest cement operations carried
on hereabout. In 1917 he became engaged in business on his own account and has since then become widely recognized
as a leader in his line, doing a general contracting business and being proprietor of a well equipped establishment
at No. 320 Orange street.
Cyrus R. Gurdy was born on a farm in Fayette county, in northeastern Iowa, February 9, 1879, and was there reared.
At the age of seventeen he took up the trade of plasterer and thus early became acquainted with that phase of the
building trades. It was about that time that cement construction began to attract the favorable attention of builders
all over the country and Mr. Gurdy wisely took up that line of constructive work. Iowa towns then also were beginning
to replace their old sidewalks with cement and a profitable field thus was opened for the experienced cement man.
Presently becoming qualified as a contractor, Mr. Gurdy did considerable business of that character, working in
various towns and cities in Iowa, and was thus engaged until 1907, when he came to California and was employed
as foreman of the works of N. M. Ball, general cement contractor and manufacturer of cement blocks and pipes in
Porterville. As noted above, Mr. Gurdy was for ten years thus employed. In 1917 he opened business for himself
and since then has done the major part of the new and reconstruction work in the cement line hereabout. Some of
the contracts thus carried out by Mr. Gurdy have been of an unusually heavy character and he has equipment for
all sorts of work in his line. He also has facilities for carrying out contracts in steel bridge work. He erected
the steel foot bridge across the Tule river south of Porterville, and also has done much in contract painting of
bridges; but cement work is his specialty. He has erected numerous new cement bridges for the county, including
the hundred foot bridge across Salt creek and the long span across St. Johns river near Visalia, several of the
city bridges in Porterville and miles of sidewalks, curbs and gutters in that city and in Tulare, besides cement
flooring in many of the business houses and garages in Porterville, and in the county barn; and he has done much
highway work including the cement shoulders on the Lindsay Tulare highway. Cement building construction hereabout
also bears the imprint of his craftsmanship, among works of this latter type being the recent erection of the cement
warehouse of the Williamson Loyd Brothers Company in Porterville.
On October 1, 1910, in Visalia, Mr. Cyrus R. Gurdy was united in marriage to Grace Weger, who also was born in
Iowa, and they have a pleasant home in Porterville. Mrs. Gurdy was formerly married to Wm. Bisset, by whom she
had one son, Ormond, now twenty two years of age. Mr. Gurdy is a member of the local lodge of the Independent Order
of Odd Fellows and is also affiliated with the Benevolent Protective Order of Elks.
History of Tulare County, California
By: Kathleen Edwards Small
Kings County, California
By: J. Larry Smith
The S. J. Clarke Publishing Company
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