The Valley of Heart's Delight

  EPHRIAM BALSBAUGH-Cement Contractor of Palo Alto
Surnames: Moyer, Culler, Deirupo, Niehardt

An enterprising likable business man of Palo Alto is Ephriam Balsbaugh, a cement contractor who can be depended upon to do honest and excellent work.  He was born on his father's farm near Harrisburg, PA, October 13, 1859, a son of George and Susan (Moyer)Balsbaugh, who were both natives of Pennsylvania.  The BALSBAUGH family were pioneers of Pennsylvania, coming from Germany and settling there in 1747.  EPHRIAM received his education in the public schools of his native district and helped his father with the farm work, and also became handy with the saw and hammer.  When eighteen years old he left home and went to Mattoon, Ill., and was employed doing farm work; then went to Western Kansas and continued to do farm work and in time purchased his own farm there.

Mr.  Balsbaugh's marriage occurred at Stockton, Kans., [ed note: APRIL 10, 1884]
and united him with Miss Minnie Culler, a daughter of George and Catherine Culler, her father a native of Pennsylvania and her mother of Ohio.  In 1887 he and his family removed to Colton., Cal and he was employed in the Stover Mountain Marble Works and held that position for three and a half years and then he followed gold mining in the Searchlight section for two and a half years.  Mr and Mrs Balsbaugh are the parents of one daughter, Mary.  In 1904 the family removed to Palo Alto so that their daughter might have the advantages of a a university education.  She was graduated from Stanford University and received the degrees of A. B. and A. M. and later was united in marriage with John Deirup, and attorney of Chico, who passed away in that city.  They were the parents of two children, Maryle and Torbin.

Mr. Balsbaugh is the leading resident cement contractor of Palo Alto and has done most  of the  street curbing of that city; and laid many of the sidewalks; at present is doing the concrete work on the new Schmidt Block on Emerson Street.  He keeps from three to ten men busy in his business, building foundations and chimneys for residences throughout the county; he also does considerable fancy work in cobblestones and concrete and erected the beautiful cobblestone posts, costing $5,000, for the portal of Mountain View, which is one of the finest pieces of  cobblestone art work in California; he has also done much of the same kind of work at Camp Curry in the Yosemite Valley, where he worked steadily for a period of seven moths; the Mason cobblestone chimney in the Big Basin was also built by Mr Balsbaugh and is a fine piece of work  His art work is beautiful nd substantial and has a peculiar individuality that attracts attention. 

Mrs. Balsbaugh came from an excellent eastern family and with her mother is a member of the Christian Science Church; her mother, Mrs. Catherine Culler, is grandmother of Mr. John G Niehardt, the poet laureate of Nebraska, author of  "Three Friends," "Hugh Glass", "Epic of the Northwest" and other celebrated poems.  "Three Friends" secured him the prize for the best poetry written in America for 1919.  Mr. Balsbaugh ws brought up in the United Bretheren Church and is now a member of the Congregational Church.  A man of the highest principles and unquestioned integrity, he and his family are held in the hightest regard in the community.

Transcribed by Carolyn Feroben, from Eugene T. Sawyers' History of Santa Clara County,California,
 published by Historic Record Co. , 1922.