Monterey County California Genealogy and History

Monterey County: Biographies


An expert packer of choice apples who has the double advantage of both growing much of his output and enjoying the best organized facilities for shipping, is Luke George Bachan, of Watsonville. He also came from Dalmatia, where he was born February 28, 1889, the son of Luke Bachan, a hardworking farmer whom he never knew, for he passed away when the son, L. G., was about three years old. His devoted mother is still living, however, at her comfortable home in the old world.

The Dalmatian schools gave Mr. Bachan his first help toward independence and that meant much, for he was compelled as a boy to go to work in the orchards and he also did farm work. On October 6, 1907, he landed in New York, eager to try his fortune under the more favoring Stars and Stripes; and soon after setting foot on American soil he boarded a train and started for California.

On the 13th of October, 1907, Mr. Bachan reached the Pajaro valley and immediately went to work for Stolich Brothers, as a packer of apples. Later for five months, he was in the service of M. N. Lettunich and in May, 1908, M. L. Kalich engaged him. He was sufficiently well satisfied with his post and he remained with the latter until June, 1910, when he embarked in business for himself. Luckily, he had been able to save a little money from his dollar-a-day income, and, though his beginning was unpretentious enough, he has been, by hard work, foresight and thrift, very successful. This is evidenced by the fact that he has just bought the Dunbar & Hansen plant, with all the equipment-a very important adjunct. His success here has developed an intense interest on his part in all that pertains to the growth and future of Watsonville, and he does all in his power to advance the interests of both city and county.

Mr. Bachan has been twice married, his first wife being Miss Teresa De Lares, by whom he has had two children, Catherine Anna and Luke George, Jr. Mrs. Bachan,. who was beloved by all who knew her, died November 1, 1922, and he subsequently married Miss Maria P. Alaga, by whom he has one child, Alice Maria. He is a republican; has attained to the third degree in the Knights of Columbus; is a Forester of America; and belongs to the Austrian-American Benevolent Association. Despite his busy life, he is able at times to enjoy his love of hunting.

Source: History of Monterey and Santa Cruz Counties, California : cradle of California's history and romance : dating from the planting of the cross of Christendom upon the shores of Monterey Bay by Fr. Junipero Serra, and those intrepid adventurers who accompanied him, down to the present day. Chicago: S.J. Clarke Pub. Co., 1925, 890 pgs.