Monterey County California Genealogy and History

Monterey County: Biographies


Arnold Madsen is prominent among the dairying leaders of Monterey county, as proprietor of the Salinas Creamery, at the corner of Menke and San Juan streets, Salinas. He has also exerted an enviable influence in favor of many movements for the benefit of the public and is recognized as a valuable resident of the community. A native of Denmark, he was born April 14, 1876, and in 1894, when a young man of eighteen, came to the United States. For a while he worked as a farm hand in Wisconsin and Nebraska. In 1902 he moved further west and ultimately reached California where his first work was in helping to build an airship for Mr. Tolliver, in Alameda county. Later he was the keeper for a gun club at Newark, California.

On coming to Monterey Mr. Madsen secured employment at milking cows in connection with the creamery owned by Vierra Brothers at Blanco, and in 1906 he worked in the Salinas Creamery. Two years later he went to Petaluma, Sonoma county, where he worked in the Burdell Creamery for a year, and afterward was employed in the same occupation at Orland. He next took an eight weeks course in a dairy school at Davis, where he learned the business of buttermaking and then accepted a position as buttermaker in the Creamier Creamery at Sacramento. He was next employed as buttermaker in the Posey Creamery at Marysville and when he removed to Salinas he became manager of the Salinas Creamery Company. Still later he was in partnership with Walter Meyenberg but bought out his partner's interest May 1, 1924, and is now sole owner.

The Salinas Creamery, a commercial institution of which the town of Salinas is justly proud, was started in 1901, and is a modern, up-to-date plant, making the famous brand of Golden Rod Butter and Golden Rod Cottage Cheese. The creamery averages seven hundred pounds of butter daily the year around, and the product is sold in the cities and towns of Monterey county and also at San Jose. The pasteurizing plant was installed in 1916 and is one of the best in this part of the state. The creamery also makes cottage cheese and one hundred gallons of sweet cream is handled daily.

At Napa Mr. Madsen was married to Miss Gertrude Olsen, a native of Norway, now deceased, by whom he was blessed with five girls: Olga, who is in San Francisco; Synnove and Evelyn, high-school students; Alma and Clara. In 1906, Mr. Madsen and his sister brought their father and mother to California, and the father is still living, at the age of eighty. Mr. Madsen came to the United States a poor boy but by industry, faithfulness and determination has won success and is now at the head of a very substantial business.

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.