A man of unusual intellectual ability, and high Christian character, Jeremiah Leiter, at the age of eighty-three, looks backward over the years with a satisfaction born of right living. While still a young man, he was threatened with pulmonary troubles, and was, on this account, debarred from entering the Civil War. Although retired from business cares, he gives much time to religious and educational lines, and takes an active interest in the affairs of the College of the Pacific.

Mr. Leiter comes from Holland ancestry, his forebears being two brothers who came to America in pre-Revolutionary days, one settling in Maryland and the other in Pennsylvania. He was born in Seneca County, Ohio, December 15, 1838, in the vicinity of Bellevue, a son of John Leiter, who was engaged in farming pursuits in Ohio. The mother, who before her marriage was Miss Sarah Barger, was born in Pennsylvania, and came to Ohio in an early day. They were the parents of nine children, four boys and five girls, of whom Jeremiah Leiter is the second son. During the year of 1845, the family removed to Fulton County, Indiana, and purchased a farm. The Indians were just leaving this part of the county, the farm was covered with a thick growth of trees and here on the farm Jeremiah was reared and learned to grub, clear, cut brush, plow and do every other kind of farm work, thus having a general pioneer experience in the Hoosier State. When the family settled on this piece of land, not a house was in sight. A shanty was built and the family moved in, and the following summer the first log house in that locality was erected out of tamarack logs, cut and prepared from logs obtained from a nearby tamarack swamp. His summers were spent working on the farm, going to school during the winter months. He afterwards followed the profession of teaching for five winters.

Mr. Leiter was married in 1862 to Mrs. Jane (Phillips) Schaffer, who was born in Virginia. For a number of years Mr. Leiter was engaged in the mercantile business with his brother-in-law, Hickman Phillips, at Kewanna, Ind., and was thus engaged until 1875, when he was obliged to retire from the business on account of failing health. He removed to California and spent one year here, greatly benefited in health. Returning to Indiana, he again entered the mercantile business, but at the end of the year was again forced to take a vacation, going to Florida for one year; later removing to California, settling in Napa, where he remained for a year, removing to San Jose in 1883, where he has continuously resided. For a number of years he was engaged in the real estate business, and, as in other lines of work, he was successful.

For over sixty years Mr. Leiter has been a consistent and active member of the Methodist Episcopal Church, and for twenty-nine years was the efficient superintendent of the Sunday school of the Methodist Church in Kewanna; for nineteen years he was the teacher of the adult Bible class and has served as a. member of the official board for thirty-
seven years. Perhaps his most outstanding activity was in connection with the College of the Pacific, being elected treasurer of that institution twenty-five years ago. Owing to his careful and conservative handling of the funds of the college, a large debt was cancelled, many buildings and general improvements have been made, and the endowment increased some $300,000. During 1920 five trustees were reelected who had served on the board twenty years before, among them being Mr. Leiter. At one time, he was voted a salary of $25 per month, but declined it and never drew a single month's salary.

Mrs. Leiter was a charming woman of attractive and pleasing personality and joined her husband in his business, social and religious activities. She was a devoted member of the Methodist Episcopal Church from the time of their marriage until her death. Unfortunately Mr. Leiter was bereaved of his faithful wife and life companion, who passed away in February, 1917, mourned by her many friends.

In his political affiliations Mr. Leiter is an independent, always voting for the clean, temperance man. He is an ardent admirer of the beauties and opportunities of Santa Clara County, and gives freely of his time and means in the support of worthy measures looking to the improvement and advancement of the community, which has been his home for so many years. He is a highly honored and respected citizen and well deserves the esteem conferred upon him by a large circle of admiring friends and acquaintances.

Transcribed cferoben, from Eugene T. Sawyers' History of Santa Clara County,California, published by Historic Record Co. , 1922. page 714