A man who has contributed to the pleasure of the music loving people and has done his share to raise the standard of music in San Jose is Prof. Joseph Wesley Rainey, a native of County. Antrim, Ireland, born October 8, 1838, a son of Hugh and Sarah Rainey. The father was a farmer and died when our subject was three years of age. When a lad of ten years he came to Birmingham, Mich., where he attended the public school. He showed much talent for music, possessing a splendid voice and he continued the study of music under Migalo Signor, a well-known teacher of his time in Detroit, and later Mr. Rainey m as engaged in teaching singing. During the Civil War he showed his patriotism by volunteering his services, enlisting in Company D, Twenty-second Michigan Volunteer Infantry, on September 3, 1862, taking part in the battles of Danville and Hickman bridge, Ky., Peavine Creek, Chickamauga, Wauhatchie and Missionary Ridge, Tenn., Atlanta, Ga. He was mustered out at Nashville, Tenn., June 26, 1865.

Mr. Rainey was married December 16, 1868, at Birmingham, Mich., to Miss Hattie Philbrick, who was born at Troy, Mich., a daughter of Henry Philbrick, a native of New York State and a successful voice teacher in Michigan. Hattie Philbrick studied piano and voice and possessed a beautiful alto voice. They were located at Pontiac, Mich., where Mr. Rainey was chorister of the Methodist Episcopal Church and Mrs. Rainey was the organist, and in that city, too, he taught voice.

Becoming interested in the Pacific Coast region, Mr. and Mrs. Rainey removed to San Jose in 1883, where they became well known in music circles, Mr. Rainey as a teacher of voice and Mrs. Rainey as a teacher of piano. He was leader of the Methodist Episcopal choir for two years and the Presbyterian choir for seven years; at the same time Mrs. Rainey served as the organist. At the end of this period, Mrs. Rainey became organist for the True Life Church at Eden-vale, a position she filled for eighteen years, at the same time being a member of the church. Prof. Rainey continued teaching in San Jose and at the same time sang at the Catholic churches in that city for about thirty years, the last engagement being at St. Joseph's Church, over a period of nine years. Possessing a very sweet and pure tenor voice, he gave his audiences much pleasure by his interpretation and clear rendition of solos, and continued his singing until eighty-one years of age. He and Mrs. Rainey now live retired, spending a part of the year in San Jose and the balance at their orchard home in the Lakeside district of the Santa Cruz Mountains, where he owns fifteen acres devoted to the culture of prunes, being an enthusiastic member of the Prune and Apricot Growers Association. Thus at this cozy country home, Mr. and Mrs. Rainey in their liberal and kind-hearted way dispense a generous hospitality. They have one daughter Lessie M., the wife of Prof. Joseph E. Hancock, head of the Grant grammar school in San Jose, the parents of two children Velda and Joseph Rainey Hancock. Mr. Rainey is a Knights Templar Mason, a Knight of Pythias and a member of Sheridan-Dix Post No. 7, G. A. R., and with his wife is a member of the Eastern Star. They now look back upon their interesting and pleasant careers in San Jose with much pleasure and are delighted that so much of their active life was spent in this beautiful Santa Clara Valley.

Transcribed cferoben, from Eugene T. Sawyers' History of Santa Clara County,California, published by Historic Record Co. , 1922. page 874