(History of the deSAISSET Museum)

 Bio-Pen Pictures

is a member of a distinguished French family, and was born in the city of Paris in 1829. His father, Pedro Saisset, was educated in the Military Academy of France, and before he reached his seventeenth birthday was a Lieutenant in active service in Napoleon Bonaparte's army. His son earned the title of Admiral in the French navy by valiant services, and took a prominent part in the defense of Paris during the Franco-German War in 1871-72. He was subsequently elected a member of the General Assembly of France, and held the office at the time of his death. The subject of this memoir was graduated at the University of Paris in 1847, with the degree of A. B.; read law a year; in 1848 sailed for America; stopped four months at Rio Janeiro, then came by way of Cape Horn, on the brig Hector, to San Francisco, arriving July 2, 1849, having consumed 135 days in the voyage.

        Mr. Saissett married Miss Maria J. Palomares, a Spanish lady, and they settled in San Jose. February 28, 1882, Mr. Saisset incorporated the Brush Electric Light Company of this city, and was its first President. Through his energetic efforts, assisted by others, electric lighting has attained great success in San Jose, in spite of the many obstacles which had to be met and overcome, as is always the case with the innovation of a new idea. By considerable exertion the Brush system was adopted for lighting the city, and so satisfactory has it proven that few cities in this country are as well lighted. The property of the company consists of the lot on North Fourth Street, on which stands their substantial brick machinery building seventy feet square, containing three steam-engines, aggregating 400-horse power, eight dynamos; and the equipment of tower, masts, wires, etc., with 200 lamps. The entire plant cost about $100,000. The whole machinery department has been changed and remodeled within the past year, and the latest and best machines have replaced the former ones, so that in every detail the plant has no superior on the Pacific Coast. The electric light tower at the crossing of Santa Clara and Market Streets was the first erected, which was done by the citizens in 1881, and was bought by the Brush Company. It stands 208 feet above the street; is constructed of tubular iron, and supports a number of lamps, aggregating 24,000 candle-power, the largest light in the United States, and the third largest in the world. Besides this, there are twelve masts 150 feet high, supporting in all ninety lamps for lighting the city. The number of lights for all purposes has nearly doubled during the past year.

        Before leaving Paris Mr. Saisset resigned his position as officer in the National Guard, but he still maintains his allegiance to the country of his nativity, and is now serving the French. Government as consular agent in San Jose. Mr. and Mrs. Saisset have a family of two sons and two daughters. Their elder son, Ernest Pedro de Saisset, has developed great talent for art, and is now in Paris studying under an eminent French master, with flattering prospect of taking high rank as a portrait artist in oil. Their other son is attending Santa Clara College. The elder daughter, Henrietta, has a diploma from the State Normal School, and the other daughter, Isabel, is taking a course in the same institution. Besides their beautiful home on South Market Street, Mr. Saisset owns a fine stock ranch of 3,313 acres in Alameda County.

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. 662

Read the Autobiography and Reminiscence of Pedro de Alcantara Brazileiro de Saisset, San Francisco, 1904.


SANTA CLARA COUNTY The Valley of Heart's Delight