Monterey County California Genealogy and History

Monterey County: Biographies


Among the educators of Monterey and adjacent counties, the name of William C. Waibel, principal of the King city high school, is well known. He was born at San Jose, California, January 15, 1885. His father, John Waibel, came to California from Minnesota, and his mother, whose maiden name was Rebecca McGee, was a native of Pennsylvania. She came to the Pacific coast by way of the Isthmus of Panama while the Civil war was in progress, being at that time only seven years of age. John Waibel came to California in 1870 and was for years engaged in business as a cattleman and cement contractor.

William C. Waibel received his early education in the common and high schools of his native city. He then attended normal school and later enrolled as a student at the Leland Stanford University. It was the original intention for him to go to Vienna, Austria, to become a surgeon, as his uncle, Henry Waibel, was at the head of a famous institution in that city. Circumstances changed this plan and at the age of eighteen years he began teaching school, first in country and private schools, attending summer schools in the meantime. He then taught at Santa Barbara, Alameda, Pleasanton and Benecia before coming to King City, with occasional terms at the university as opportunity offered. He has been at the head of the King City high school since 1922.

From 1903 to 1909 Mr. Waibel was considered the champion all round athlete of the Pacific coast. In 1903 he broke two world's records as a bicycle rider-first, a straight-away road race of one mile, paced time, in one minute and twenty-six seconds at San Jose, and one hundred miles on a mile track in five hours. He rode the ten miles from Oakland to Hayward in twenty one minutes and thirteen seconds, and made one mile from a standing start in two minutes and three seconds. While at Santa Clara College he played baseball, and at Leland Stanford he was a member of the Varsity football team. In fact he participated in all athletic sports (except golf), with a standing above the average in all.

At the age of twenty-four years Mr. Waibel returned to college and settled down to work in earnest, with the result that in 1919 the University of California conferred upon him the degree of Master of Arts. During his course he specialized, or "majored," in history and education, and "minored" in English and science. Had it not been for his activity in athletics he could have received his degree in 1909. While he thus lost some time in his studies the loss has been an advantage to him in building up his physique, and today Mr. Waibel is a splendid example of "a sound mind in a sound body"-a combination sadly lacking in many of his fellow countrymen.

Wherever Mr. Waibel has been located he has taken an interest in affairs. At Benicia he was president of the Red Cross and the forum department of the Chamber of Commerce. Since coming to King City he was vice president of the Red Cross until the work of that organization was centralized at the county seat. He is a prominent figure in Masonic circles and is a member of the Order of the Eastern Star. In the university he won a membership in the honor fraternity of the Phi Delta Kappa. Mr. Waibel has never married.

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.