Horticulturist, Santa Clara County

 Bio-Pen Pictures

deceased. The subject of this sketch was born in Ireland, in 1824. Receiving a good education in his native land, where he became a school-teacher, on reaching manhood he became anxious for better opportunities for advancement, more freedom, more room to play the game of life than was afforded by overcrowded Ireland, with its old, established, hard condition for the poor man. Coming to the United States, he landed at Boston in 1847, and after several years' residence in the East, came to this State in its days of early history-1853. His first home was in Napa County, where he owned, at one time, the larger part of the present site of the city of Napa. In 1856 Mr. Farney became a resident of Santa Clara County, and soon after bought fifty acres of land on the Milpitas road, on the east bank of the Coyote River, about three miles from San Jose. This property he improved from a state of nature, making it one of the most productive farms on that road. He early devoted forty acres of his land to fruit culture, and being a careful, skillful horticulturist, his products were known far and wide for their excellent condition,while they stood second to none in the markets. He received from the San Francisco Bay District Agricultural Society, September, 1861, a diploma for the best nursery of fruit-trees.

        On the ninth day of July, 1873, Mr. Farney married Miss Mary Burdon, who is also a native of Ireland, coming to the United States with her brother, John Burdon, in 1859. California has been her home since 1865. She is the mother of three bright little girls: Mary C., born in 1874; Julia E., born in 1876; and Alice R., born in 1878.

        Mr. Farney was a man who made friends wherever he was known. His warm, genial nature won for him many friends among his neighbors and acquaintances in the home of his adoption.. Coming to California a poor man, he carved out his fortune here, and no one of the many prosperous residents of Santa Clara Valley more heartily deserves the success which followed his efforts than did he. In creating a pleasant and profitable business and comfortable home in which to enjoy the blessings of a free country, he accomplished thoroughly the object which he had in view when he left his native land to seek his fortunes in the New World.

        His death, which occurred from hemorrhage, May 7, 1885, was a very great bereavement not only to his wife and children, but also to a large circle of friends. He was a consistent member of the Catholic Church, as is each member of his family. His intelligence, education, and culture placed him in the responsible position of leader and representative of citizens of his own nationality. That he faithfully performed all the duties of a good citizen, as he did the duties in every branch of his life-work, it is hardly necessary to say. He leaves to his family and friends the memories of a life well spent.

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.

Pg. 521-522


SANTA CLARA COUNTY The Valley of Heart's Delight