VALLEY OF HEART's DELIGHT
PETER J DUNNE
Surnames: MURPHY, RUCKER,
HERSEY, MASTEN, SILENT, RICHMOND
PETER J. DUNNE.-A most interesting man of varied experience such as many would-be students of life and the ways of the world might well envy, is Peter J. Dunne, the far-seeing manager of the extensive Catherine Dunne(see bio of 1888) estate of San Jose. He was born southeast of Gilroy in Santa Clara County, and first saw the light on October 19, 1865. His father, James Dunne, was born in Ireland in 1817, but came to America when quite young and located in New Orleans, where he worked at any honest labor his hands found to do. He had but a limited schooling, thus his progress was slow. He prospered and married and he and his wife became the parents of five children of whom only one, J. F. Dunne, is alive. He owns the original Dunne estate of 15,000 acres of fine ranch land at San Felipe, where is carried on a general ranching business. This son was born in the '50s and spends part of his time in San Francisco. The other children were: Caroline, Catherine, Peter and
Joseph, all dying before they reached the age of ten years. Mrs. Catherine Dunne, his wife, died on June 21, 1857, aged twenty-eight years. Mr. Dunne spent some time in South America after he left New Orleans as a flour merchant and he came to San Francisco in the latter part of the '50's and engaged in the general merchandise business, meeting with good success. In 1862 he married Mrs. Catherine Murphy and they spent their married life on the San Felipe ranch, which Mr. Dunne
had bought and proceeded to develop. This second marriage brought three children: Mary P., Peter J., and Catherine B., all born on the San Felipe Ranch, which was his home at the time of his death, June 8, 1874. He was a Democrat of the old school and was a man of energy and strict integrity and ready to assist any worthy project for the benefit of town, county or state. Mary Phileta married Joseph H. Rucker, the real estate dealer of San Jose; the second in the order of birth is the
subject of this review; and the Catherine B. is Mrs. Ralph W. Hersey.
Peter Dunne was graduated from the Santa Clara College in 1884 with the degree of B. S., and then he engaged in business in San Francisco. In 1895 he removed to San Jose and took charge of his mother's estate; and this, one of the notable California properties, he has continued to oversee, while his mother is still living, at present at the age of ninety-four. With the fruits of a valuable training, and the affectionate conscientiousness of a loyal son, Mr. Dunne has been able greatly to increase the worth of the properties under his charge, and has so proven a steward of the kind capitalists and corporations are always seeking.
On April 6, 1888, Mr. Dunne was married to Miss Josephine Rose Masten, the daughter of N. K. Masten of San Francisco, and they have been granted eight children, six now living-Peter M., a Jesuit priest; Mary K. became the wife of Roy A. Silent of Los Angeles and the mother of a daughter, Patricia; Josephine M. married Cedric Rae Richmond of San
Jose; Dorothy R., a sister in the Convent of the Holy Name; Catherine M. and Margaret M.; the fifth child, James and the youngest Eleanor, died in infancy. Of those living, the three eldest girls were born while the family lived in San Francisco and the others in San Jose and they were educated at Notre Dame in San Jose and the Holy Name in Oakland.
Josephine is a graduate of the University of California and Mary was a senior when she left and Catherine was junior. The family attend the Catholic Church. Mr. Dunne works for civic betterment under the banners of the Democratic party, and belongs to the Knights of Columbus and Y.M. I.