Gilroy owes much to her far-sighted, enterprising and optimistic merchants, prominent among whom is William Funkier, who came to the Golden State in the late '80s. He was born of German parentage, in the historic kingdom of Wurtemburg, on June 24, 1870, and was reared and educated up to his sixteenth year in his native land. Then, attracted by the greater individual freedom of America, he crossed the ocean, pushed westward to California, and in March, 1888, located at San Francisco. The next year he removed to San Jose and found work at the Fredericksburg brewery; and for eighteen years he was employed there, rising in time to be foreman. In 1906 Mr. Funkier removed with his family to Gilroy, and for the following four years, or until the property was destroyed by fire, he conducted a well-known hotel in the town. Since then he has acquired a very desirable ranch, a portion of the famous Miller & Lux estate, one mile to the west of Gilroy, set out as a young orchard. In 1918, he opened a popular store which has become the headquarters for the best of refreshments. In national politics a Republican, Mr. Funkler's nonpartisan support of things local has added to his popularity.

Mr. Funkler's mother died when she was eighty years old, but his father is still living in Germany, at the fine old age of eighty-three. William was married June 21, 1891, in San Jose, to Miss Johanna Ruff, a resident of San Jose, since 1890, and they have had six children: Jennie has become Mrs. L. L. Whitehurst, and the mother of two children; Clara is a graduate trained nurse, in charge of Dr. Beatty's offices; Augusta is a graduate of the State Normal School and a teacher in the public school at Hilo, Hawaiian Islands; Sophie has become Mrs. Howard Steinmetz and resides at Pacific Grove; Louise, a stenographer, is an employe of the Monterey Lumber Company, in Monterey; Emma is a graduate of the Gilroy high school. The family reside at 58 Forest Street, Gilroy. Mr. Funkler is a past officer of the Druids, and he is also a member of the Moose Lodge.

From Eugene T. Sawyers' History of Santa Clara County,California, published by Historic Record Co. , 1922. page 1154


SANTA CLARA COUNTY The Valley of Heart's Delight