Almaden Township

John Jeffries

Was born London, England, January 1, 1814; served seven years at the trade of dyeing; in the year 1835 emigrated to the United States; worked at his trade in New York on year, but finding very poor pay joined a party of stone-cutters engaged to build the locks on the canal at Fort Wayne, Indiana, but after enduring fever and ague, and swindling contracts for nearly a year, pulled up stakes and next found himself in Louisiana, in the employment of United States Surveyors.  This he soon left.  He then went to Natchez, Mississippi.  Here he carried on the manufacture of cigars in partnership with Mr. Bryant for about five years.  The great tornado in that place destroyed his place of business , burying him under the ruins, from which he barely escaped with his life.  He then went to Boston , Massachusetts.  Stayed on year, but not liking the cold weather went to Florida, where he was variously employed till 1846, when he left for St. Louis, Missouri.  He there started business at his old trade of dyeing; continued at that till early in 1849, and then left for California, crossing the plains with ox-teams, and arrived at Santa Clara in the rainy season;' tried gardening on the Stockton ranch in partnership with a Mr. Dickson, since deceased; was with Charles Clayton in a store fro a short time; started a farm near where the town of Saratoga now stands, where he was doing pretty well till driven of [sic] by  the stock-men.  He then came to the farm now owned by his brother, James Jeffries, Containing on hundred and nineteen acres-  John Jeffries died November 21, 1880.


The subject of this sketch, brother of the above John Jeffries, is also a native of London, England, where he was born January 29, 1810.  In 1835 he came to the United States; was engaged in the wholesale hardware store of G. Q Tyson & Co., of Pearl street, New York; after the fire went to Apalachicola, Florida with a stock of goods, remained nearly a year and returned to New York  From there he went to Boston, Massachusetts; was engaged in the business of property-makeing for the several theaters there till 1872, then joined his brother in Almaden township, Santa Clara county, where he has since resided.  Married, December 24, 1832, E. Massham, of Kent, England, who died march 20, 1860; has one daughter born in 1836, now living in Massachusetts

Transcribed by Carolyn Feroben
History of Santa Clara County, California
San Francisco: Alley, Bowen & Co., 1881, 838 pgs.
page 556