William J. Dickson


Nicasio Township, page 434

William J. Dickson This gentleman, whose portrait appears in this work, was born in Caledonia County, Vermont, January 25, 1829, and Is the son of Robert and Janet Lenna Dickson, both natives of Scotland. Young Dickson remained on his father's farm till 1853, attending in the meantime the common schools of the State, and the high schools at Peacham and Newbury, and also teaching school during the Winter sessions. In September, 1853, he sailed via the Isthmus for California, and arrived in San Francisco about the 27th of that month. He went at once to Knight's Ferry and engaged in the employ of Locke & Dent, in the erection of the dam and the first mill that was built there. He remained in that place till 1856, when he came to Marin County, and in company with his brother, David S., began the business of dairying and stock raising on the San Geronimo ranch. The County at that time was sparsely settled; traveling was done mostly on horseback ; fences were almost unknown ; bear were plentiful, often killing the stock in the night. In 1859 he returned to his old home in Vermont, remaining there till December of that year, when he returned, bringing with him his sister, now Mrs. W. R. Coburn, of Middleton, Lake County. In 1869, when the San Geronimo ranch was divided and sold, he bought about five hundred acres, and has since resided upon this homestead. He has long been prominently identified with the school interests of his neighborhood, and is one of the officers' of the Presbyterian •Church of San Rafael. November 16, 1869, he was married to Miss Jennie R., daughter of William and Isabella Baxter Barr, born in Glasgow, Scotland. The marriage occurred in Rochester, New York. Their children are: — Frederick William, bourn September 27, 1870; and Edith Isabella, born August 28, 1876.

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