NATHAN W. SPAULDING
We have a just pride in the pioneers of our State who were prominent in laying the foundation of this great commonwealth. Ex-Mayor Spaulding of Oakland is a good representative of a Californian, and a fine type of American citizenship. He is a descendant from the good old Puritan stock of Massachusetts, and a native of Maine. At the age of thirteen he commenced learning the trade of carpenter and builder, having his father for instructor. He became a master mechanic, and at the age of twenty-two years started for California, arriving in September, 1851. His varied experiences in mining, whipsawing lumber to turn the bed of the Mokelumne river, and building sawmills, is but a chapter of his life, and through many disasters and disappointments he did not become disheartened. In September, 1859, he opened a saw factory at Sacramento and invented and devised the adjustable saw-tooth, which has brought him honor and notoriety as an inventor and revolutionized the circular saw business. The Pacific Saw Manufacturing Company and the N. W. Spaulding Saw Company are the largest of the Pacific Coast and among the leading saw manufactories of the United States. In 1868 he removed his family to Oakland, where he has since resided, surrounded by an interesting family, living in a luxurious home. He has taken a deep interest in municipal affairs of the city of Oakland; serving as a Councilman four years and Mayor for two terms. Without solicitation on his part, President Garfield, in 1881, tendered him the important and responsible office of United States Treasurer at San Francisco. This Mr. Spaulding accepted, entering upon the discharge of his duties on the fifth day of May, 1881, and holding it until August 20, 1885. During that time he received and disbursed, or safely kept and transferred to his successor, more than three hundred and twenty millions of dollars without the loss of one cent. In public or private life he has maintained a spotless reputation. His useful inventions and business tact have brought him fame, and the offices of trust and honor which he has filled have come to him without solicitation. His Masonic record is almost continued service in office since 1855. He is now Grand Treasurer of the Grand Lodge in California. He was W. M. of Mission, 169, for two years, and W. M. of Oakland, 188, F. and A. M., six years, and filled the office of High Priest in Alameda Chapter for three consecutive years, and past Grand High Priest of the Royal Arch of California. He is a member of Oakland Commandery and also of Scottish Rite, 33 degree. He is an active member of the Masonic Board of Relief. In the Independent Order of Odd Fellows he holds a membership and also in the Encampment.
He is noted for his generosity, patience, constancy and fidelity; is a true friend, forbearing and forgiving; fashions, conquers and leads by the Golden Rule. As an inventor and mechanic who toils daily in his studio and factory, it was a just tribute to appoint him a trustee of the Leland Stanford, Junior, University.
Transcribed By: Cecelia M. Setty.
Source: “Illustrated Fraternal Directory Including Educational Institutions on the Pacific Coast”, Page 29, Publ. Bancroft Co., San Francisco. Cal. 1889.
© 2012 Cecelia M. Setty.