Colusa County Biographies - A

Biographies and photos source:

  1. Colusa County: Its History Traced from a State of Nature through the Early Period of Settlement and Development, to the Present Day with a Description of its Resources, Statistical Tables, Etc., Justus H. Rogers

  2. Biographical Sketches of Pioneers and Prominent Residents, Orland, California, 1891.
  3. History Of Colusa and Glenn Counties, California (Pages: 255-955)
    History by Charles Davis McCormish and Mrs. Rebecca T. Lambert, Historic Record Company, Los Angeles, California, 1918 - Transcribed by: Martha A Crosley Graham.

A digitized version of the book can be found on Google Books.

Please note: many of the names in this index were abbreviated with initials. The full names of those individuals has been added {in braces} when possible.

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Addington, Stephen (p.450)

This gentleman, who was intimately associated with journalism in its early days in the county, was born at Orange, New Jersey, November 23, 1828. He spent his boyhood in Fishkill, New York, where he learned the trade of printer in the office of his father, who for half a century had been one of the leading publishers of that State. Stephen Addington worked here till 1855, when he started for California via the Nicaragua route. He almost at once took his place in journalism, buying out the California Express, published at Marysville, which he conducted for fourteen years. In 1870 he went to Colusa and became associated with W. S. Green and his brother, John C. Addington, in the publication of the Colusa Sun. He always took an active part in politics, was a firm Democrat and served on the Democratic Central Committee of the county. He continued in his newspaper work at Colusa till the summer of 1886, going to San Francisco, where he now resides. Mr. Addington was married, November 24, 1872, to Miss Lizzie Hart, of Colusa.
Albery, Keepers (p. 410)

Is a native of Franklin County, Ohio, born in the year 1838. His youth was uneventful, being passed in a resolute struggle to secure a common education. This once acquired, he taught school in Franklin County, Ohio, and also in Iowa, laying by with genteel economy every dollar for which he toiled so patiently and successfully in the school-rooms of the young Buckeyes. Having amassed a snug little hoard for a pedagogue in those days, he invested it all in securing a higher education than he had yet attained, at Ann Arbor University, Michigan. Completing his course here, he undertook the study of the law and was admitted to the bar of the Supreme Court of Ohio in 1865. After practicing his chosen profession for a few years in Mercer County, of that State, he was elected District Attorney thereof, serving in that office from January 1, 1868, to January I, 1872. Meanwhile, with the proceeds from his profession, he was aiding a younger brother, H. M. Albery, the present District Attorney of Colusa County, to acquire an education, and who became proficient in a knowledge of the law. While serving as prosecuting attorney, the criminal element of his district had reason to fear his ability, for not one of the many indictments prepared by him was quashed.

In 1875 Mr. Albery removed to Shelby County, in his State, and there practiced his profession till 1880, when, becoming possessed of a strong inclination to reside in California, he determined to realize it. For this purpose lie sundered the strong ties and warm friendships of a life-time, placed his property in the care of an agent and turned his face toward the setting sun. On arriving in California in the fall of 1880, he cast about for some out-of-door occupation to relieve the strain of years of professional toil, and concluded to engage in mining in Plumas County. This he followed till 1886, when he located in Colusa County, though still retaining an interest in his mines. With his capability for making and holding friends, it was not long till Mr. Albery had gathered clients about him and built up a good practice in the legal profession. Shortly after locating in his present abode, the Wright Irrigation law was passed. Mr. Albery was a close student of this measure from its first introduction in the Legislature, and thus convinced that it was radically wrong, though he himself was not opposed to irrigation as an adjunct of cultivation. Among a multitude of reasons for antagonism to this law, adduced by Mr. Albery, was that “for at least another generation, it will add to the large real-estate holdings at the expense and ruin of the small holdings, and particularly of the small holdings which happen to be encumbered.” He fought the measure sturdily as a citizen of the county, while his professional services were retained by the opponents of the creation of the Colusa and Central Irrigation Districts. Mr. Albery is a pleasant companion, cheerful as well as thoughtful, has a legion of friends, and, as he is in the prime and vigor of life, can look forward to increasing prosperity in his Colusa County home.
Photo of Keepers Albery

Keepers Albery

Ash, Captain William (p. 432)
William Ash was born in Devonshire, England, in 1826. He comes of several generations of Devonshire farmers. He was the youngest of fifteen children, and passed his infancy and youth in his native place acquiring such educational training as the local schools supplied. He worked on the paternal acres and also acquired a serviceable knowledge of the carpenter's trade by the time he had reached his eighteenth year. He left England in 1843 and alone and unaided began the struggle of life, first in Philadelphia, where he found employment at his trade. He worked subsequently in Augusta, Georgia, and at other places on the Atlantic seaboard. In 1852 the gold fever lured Mr. Ash and landed him in San Francisco with just two dollars in his pocket. He journeyed to Mendocino County, worked there in a saw-mill and saved his money, a neat sum, and now when he felt that he had sufficient capital to engage in business on his own account, the bank which held his deposits failed and he found himself penniless again. He found work at his trade in Marysville and was a building contractor there till 1859, when he went into the teaming business on an extensive scale, carrying on operations through Northern California, Idaho and Oregon. He and his party were in the Northwest during the Indian outbreak in that region. The difficulty of securing supplies on the Northwestern frontier was fraught with danger, and to Mr. Ash belongs the credit of having made the pioneer trip from Nevada into Idaho. The railroad having been completed across the continent, Mr. Ash turned from the freighting business to become a farmer. He came to Colusa County in the spring of 1869, and, having a large drove of stock, he engaged to farm a piece of land for another party. In 1870 he rented two thousand acres of land and planted part of it to grain. His crop was a failure and as all of his available means were sunk in the undertaking, his plight was not a desirable one. Undismayed, he secured financial assistance, put in another crop and from that time can date the beginning of a prosperous career as a farmer. Mr. Ash owns three thousand six hundred and eighty-five acres of land, but farms over five thousand acres, over one-half of which is planted in grain. At his home place he resides in a handsome residence, surrounded by magnificent shade trees, where, in the bosom of a happy family, he dispenses unstinted hospitality. He is the father of three children living. In politics Mr. Ash is a pronounced Republican, and is frequently called upon by his party to permit the use of his name on its ticket. On him seems to rest the honor of leading a forlorn hope in a county so almost hopelessly Democratic, but Mr. Ash accepts the task as a duty, and in every campaign, though defeated, the returns show the preference and high esteem entertained for him all over the county by his friends and neighbors. As a political opponent of his once remarked, “If Captain Ash were only a Democrat, there would not be ten votes in the county cast against him.”

Photo of Capt. William Ash's Residence
William Ash Military Biography (and additional photo)
Photo of William Ash

Capt. William Ash

Ayer, Leonard B. (p. 449)
Leonard B. Ayer is a native of Arlington, Massachusetts, where he was born March 30, 1835. His education was obtained in the common schools of his native place. At an early age he entered a merchandise establishment, and became an efficient salesman and accountant. In 1856, after having engaged in business for himself, he was obliged to seek rural recreation for his health, which had almost broken down under close application to business. Hence he wended his way westward to the prairies of Illinois, where he engaged farming near Weatherfield. Three years later, his health having been restored by the hearty exercise of farm life, the plain living of those days, and the fresh, bracing air of that climate, he started across the plains, with four companions, for California, arriving at Marysville in October, 1859. He engaged in merchandising in Marysville until 1862, when he purchased an interest in the Marysville Appeal, becoming its business manager. In April, 1865, without solicitation on his part, he was appointed Register of the United States Land Office at that place, which position he held until the fall of 1875. Upon retiring from his official position, he engaged the practice of land law, and in 1880 came to Colusa County to engage in farming in Antelope Valley. In 1888 he sold his farm and moved to Maxwell. He is interested in the development of Colusa County, and is engaged in superintending the planting and cultivation of a large orchard near the railroad station of Delevan. One hundred and sixty acres of fruit-trees and vines have already been planted, and it is proposed to plant four hundred and eight acres in addition thereunto. Mr. Ayer is a prominent Republican and takes a leading interest in local and national politics. He is a pleasant, far-seeing gentleman, well posted on the topics of the day.