Paul Joseph Schafer, Secretary of the Board of Health of Oakland, was born in San Francisco, June 20, 1863, a son of Albert B. and Katie (Müller) Schafer, who was married in that city in 1859. His father was born in Germany, in 1830, and came to California in 1850, and engaged in mining a few years. He then settled in San Francisco, where he at one time conducted the St. James Hotel. He located in Oakland about 1868, and paid a visit to the fatherland by the first through train from the Pacific in 1869. He conducted the Nicholl House in Oakland for some years, and stood well in the community. He was a member of A.O.U.W. He died in 1879, his parents living to a more advance age. He left seven children who, with their mother, are yet living, namely: Camilla, now married and residing in Bremen, Germany; Paul J., the subject of this sketch; Albertina; Katie, a teacher of music in Oakland; Antonia, attending the high school with a view to qualifying as a teacher; Moltke, now deputy County Clerk, and Daisy.
Mr. Schafer, whose name heads this sketch, graduated in the high school of Oakland in December, 1880, was employed a year a searcher of records, and in 1883 he engaged as a traveling salesman in the nursery business, which he followed for years. For eighteen months in 1887-8 he was again employed as a searcher of records, and was appointed Deputy County Recorder January 1, 1889, retaining that position until July, 1890, when he was appointed Secretary of the Board of Health, which office he still holds, having been re-appointed by the new board in April 1891, as he had proved a very efficient and acceptable secretary. In politics he has taken an active interest. Was four times a delegate to the county convention of the Republican party.
February 1, 1890, he married Miss Zebuline A. Hunt, who was born in Indiana, in February 27, 1867, a daughter of Symmes H. and Josephine A. Hunt, both living in Oakland. Mr. Hunt served as a lieutenant in the United States navy during the civil war, and has held a position in the customhouse in San Francisco for several years.
Mrs. Katie Schafer, the mother of the subject of this sketch, was brought from Germany at the age of five years, by her parents, who settled in Louisville, Kentucky, where the father was engaged as a produce merchant for several years. Mrs. Schafer came to California at about the age of twenty years, and was married in San Francisco in 1859.
Transcribed David Rugeroni.
Source: "The Bay of San Francisco," Vol. 2, pages 23-24, Lewis Publishing Co, 1892.
© 2005 David Rugeroni.