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Madera Biographies: VINCENT


It is impossible to overestimate the power of the press. As the newspaper finds its way into almost every home, it not only furnishes accounts of social neighbor hood happenings and county news, but also pre­sents in brief the issues before state and nation and influences every citizen in formulating decisions concerning important problems before the people. The true journalist has for his ambition not the mere recording of events, but the moral, educational and commercial upbuilding of his community and it is this ideal that has stimulated Edward E. Vincent in his labors as editor and proprietor of the Madera Mercury. When he established the weekly edition in March of 1885, the paper was necessarily very limited in the scope of its influence, for the county was less thickly populated than at the present time. However, as settlers became more numerous the circulation of the paper increased. About 1893 a daily was established, but after an experiment of five years it was discontinued, not being profitable at the time. With the progress made in the next two or three years the editor felt justified in again publishing the daily, and accordingly in 1900 it resumed its appearance in the homes of the people of Madera, appearing in the form of a six-column folio, while the weekly is a seven-column folio. September 28, 1903, the plant was destroyed by fire, but a new office and printing room was at once erected, and is now fitted up with a power press and a full equipment for job work.

Mr. Vincent was born in San Francisco November 1, 1853, and was an only son, having one sister, Mrs. Mary Daugueuger, now of Portland, Ore. His parents, Edward Joseph and Mary Josephine (Petri) Vincent, were natives of France, and came to California via the Horn in 1851. The father, who had previously been employed as a machinist in a surgical manufacturing establishment in France, took up the occupation of a miner on the American river and for almost twelve years followed the adventurous experiences of a prospector and miner in a frontier region. After his return to San Francisco he engaged in business until his retirement, and died in that city in 1881. His wife survived him nineteen years and died in Oakland when eighty-one years of age.

His initiation into the printing business Edward E. Vincent gained at the early age of eleven years and his first work was that of wrapping papers in the office of the Nevada City Transcript. During much of the time for sixteen years he was employed on the San Jose Mercury, where he filled different positions and gained a comprehensive knowledge of typesetting and printing. From that city he came to Madera in 1885 and established the paper with which his name is now inseparably connected. Staunchly Republican in his political views, his paper is the leading organ of that party in Madera County, and, in addition to the work done for the party through the columns of the paper; he has rendered efficient service as chairman of the county central committee. On the organization of Parlor No. 180 N. S. G. W., at Madera, he became one of its charter members and was elected its first president. Another order with which he has been actively connected is the Woodmen of the World.  His marriage, which was solemnized in San Jose, united him with Miss Maggie James, who was born in Missouri, and came to California with her father, William James; her mother was a Miss Browning, a sister of Mrs. Knox Goodrich, of San Jose. In the family of Mr. and Mrs Vincent there are three children now living, Joseph F., James Albert and Kittie.

Guinn, J. M., History of the State of California and Biographical Record of the San Joaquin Valley, California, (Chicago: Chapman Publishing, 1905), page 458.

Transcribed by Harriet Sturk.

Last update: October 17, 2012
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