U. S. GREGORY
It is of the greatest importance that the public offices be filled with men who are trustworthy, efficient and reliable. The perpetuity and welfare of the nation depends upon the honorable business integrity and executive ability of its officials and as the nation is but the aggregate of the various communities it is necessary that each separate state and county be represented in its official positions by men who are true to the trust reposed in them. That Mr. Gregory is fully worthy the confidence given him by the public is indicated by the fact that he is now serving for the third term as the sheriff of Amador County, and he has also been the representative of his district in the state legislature. He has resided in California for more than thirty years, and in the community where he has made his home he has been an integral factor in promoting the general good.
A native of Texas, Mr. Gregory was born on the 1st of July, 1849, and is of Scotch descent. His father’s ancestors, who came to America with Lord Baltimore, located in Virginia, and Umbleton Gregory, the father of our subject, was born in the Old Dominion. He served his country in the War of 1812 and afterward removed to Kentucky, Tennessee and Missouri, successively. He was a successful farmer and stock raiser, and also a slaveholder. He disapproved of the movement of secession, but when the south had fully determined upon that course his sympathies remained with the people among whom he had been reared. He married Miss Mary Hewitt, a native of Iowa, and to them were born eight children, of whom two sons and four daughters are living. Mr. Gregory’s mother was the third wife, and by these three unions the father had twenty-one children. He was a consistent Christian man, upright and honorable in all things and was a member of the Methodist Church, South. He died in 1864, at the age of sixty-five years. Of his sons, John Gregory, was killed in the war with Mexico, and three other sons served in the Confederate army during the Civil War, one as captain in a regiment of Texas volunteers, the other on the staff of General Forrest with the commission of captain.
When only thirteen years of age U. S. Gregory left home, and during the last two years of the war was in Tennessee and northern Alabama, where he witnessed much of that great struggle between the two sections of the country. After General Lee’s surrender he returned to his home and found that his father had died the previous year, that the property was destroyed, the Negroes free and that a chaotic condition reigned. In June, 1868, he came to California, taking up his abode in Ione, Amador County, where for a number of years he was successfully engaged in the lumber business. He was also the owner of lumber interests in Nevada and had mining property in the British possessions, being part owner of the Cassaiar mines. In 1881 he returned to Ione, where he conducted a harness, hardware and drug store. After the organization of the twenty-sixth agricultural district, composed of the counties of Sacramento and Amador, he was elected its president and held the office for seven years, exercising his official prerogatives to advance the farming interests of this section of the state. His labors were very effective and he was regarded as a most capable official. Further political honors awaited him, for in 1884 he was elected a member of the general assembly and served on several important committees, among which were committees on mines and mining and county government. For the third term he is now filling the office of county sheriff and will have served in that capacity for ten years on the expiration of his present term. He is prompt, reliable, courageous and fearless in the discharge of his duty, influenced by no political associations or personal favoritism. He has been particularly successful in arresting the criminals that have infested this section of the state, including a notorious band of counterfeiters, and Amador County is now practically free from crime. Mr. Gregory is regarded as a Gibraltar of strength and protection by the law-abiding citizens and with feelings of dislike by those who have no regard for justice and right. His course has been consistent, winning him high regard.
In March, 1871, Mr. Gregory was married to Miss Ell Fythian, a native of Ohio, and to them have been born two children: Mary L., who is now clerking in her father’s office; and Charles Joseph, who is now serving as one of his father’s deputies. Mr. Gregory has been a lifelong Democrat, active in support of the party, and socially he is connected with the Ancient Order of United Workmen, in which he is a past master. A citizen of honor and worth, he has a wide acquaintance, and his circle of friends is very extensive.
Transcribed by Gerald Iaquinta.
© 2010 Gerald Iaquinta.