SURNAMES: WHITBY, REEVE,
Dr. Berryman Bryant, of Gilroy, is a native of Spartanburg District, South Carolina, and son of Reuben and Sarah (Whitby) Bryant. Both parents came of old Virginia families. The subject of this sketch was reared in his native district, and received the best advantages offered by its schools. He decided to adopt medicine as his profession, and going to Memphis, Tennessee, commenced attendance at the Botanical Medical College, at which institution he graduated in 1848. He commenced practice at Camden, Alabama. On the breaking out of the California gold excitement he determined to risk his fortunes in this new but already far-famed region. Leaving Camden on the second of February, he started for his destination, taking the Gulf route to Matamoras, thence by government wagon to Durango, by pack mules to Massacland, and from there by sailing vessel to San Francisco, which port he reached June 12, 1849. He had brought with him five trunks of selected medicines, and going to Sacramento he erected a hospital. This he conducted for a time, then sold out and went to Marysville. From there he came to Gilroy in the fall of 1852, when the place was a mere attempt at a settlement. He practiced his profession in Gilroy until 1866, during which time he was the only representative of the profession there. He then removed to San Jose, but did not resume his practice until he returned to Gilroy to live, in 1878. He had made large purchases of land in 1853, and gone extensively into the sheep business, and at times had as many as 30,000 sheep. He now has 3,000 acres of land in Kern County, and 640 acres in Tulare County; also valuable property in Monterey, San Francisco, and Santa Clara County.
The Doctor has been
twice married. His first wife was Nancy Whitby. They were married in Memphis,
and her death occurred in Gilroy. By this marriage there were four children:
Perry, who resides in Fresno County; David, whose home is in San Jose; William,
who lives in San Francisco; and George, a resident of San Diego. Dr. Bryant
married his present wife in Gilroy. Her maiden name was Henrietta Reeve. They
have two children: Calhoun, a lawyer of San Francisco; and Edgar R., who will
graduate from Hahnemann Medical College, of Philadelphia, class of 1889. The
Doctor is a member of the Masonic Order. In politics he is a Democrat. He
ranks among the pioneer physicians of this county, and among its ablest and most
Pen Pictures From The
Garden of the World or Santa Clara County, California, Illustrated.
- Edited by H. S. Foote.- Chicago: The Lewis Publishing Company, 1888.
Transcribed by Kathy Sedler
Proofread by Betty Vickroy
SANTA CLARA COUNTY BIOGRAPHY PROJECT