El Dorado County
MR. ARCHIBALD SPEER BOSQUIT
Mr. A. S. Bosquit, who is efficiently serving as the sheriff of El Dorado County, his home being in Placerville, is a native of Pennsylvania, his birth occurring in Allegheny City, on the 7th of August, 1851. His father, John Bosquit, was born in Newark, New Jersey, in 1821, and was of French and German descent. He removed to the Keystone state and was there married to Miss Rosanna Beck. Three children were born to them during their residence in Allegheny County, and with his little family Mr. Bosquit sailed from New York for San Francisco, coming direct to Placer County. He took up his abode at Virginia Town and was engaged in placer mining below that place, following that industry until 1860, at which time he opened a large claim. The vein was very deep and required much work to obtain the gold. He continued his operations until 1861, without much success, and in the winter of 1861-2, with four men shoveling in the sluices, he cleared as high as fifty ounces in one day. Then a great flood came and washed away everything! Later, however, Mr. Bosquit reopened his mine, but a little later sold out for eight thousand dollars. He then became the owner of fifty-two Chinese houses, from which he received a rental of from four hundred and fifty dollars to five hundred dollars per month.
In politics he was a Republican and as such was elected a member of the state assembly in 1864. He was strongly opposed to slavery and did all in his power to promote abolition principles in the early days of the existence of the Republican Party. While serving in the California House of Representatives he was active in securing the passage of the bill for the construction of the Central Pacific Railroad. From that time until his death he was very active in the public affairs of his county and was recognized as a prominent and influential citizen, his opinions carrying weight in party councils. His death occurred in 1868, when he had reached the age of forty-nine years. His wife survived him some time and passed away in 1882, at the age of fifty-two years. Six children were added to the family in California, but all are now deceased who were born in the golden west. One of the daughters is Mrs. Thorndike, a resident of Truckee, and Matilda, another daughter, is the wife of G. W. Armstrong, of Auburn.
In taking up the personal history of A. S. Bosquit we present to our readers the life record of one who is widely and favorably known in El Dorado County. He was only two years of age when brought by his parents to California, and hence during the greater part of his life he has been identified with the interests of this state. He pursued his education at Gold Hill and Lincoln, and also took a course of study in the McClure Academy in 1869. In 1870 he bound himself to S. W. Willis to learn telegraphy. He was to receive one hundred dollars for his services and was to board and clothe himself. His employer also conducted the post office and was engaged in the stationery business, and with the work of both of those Mr. Bosquit became familiar. When his term of apprenticeship had expired he accepted a position with the Sacramento and Placerville Railroad Company, as bookkeeper and telegraph operator at Shingle Springs. He was also the agent for the Wells Fargo Express Company. He there remained until September, 1873. Subsequently he successfully engaged in farming and mining until 1891, when he was chosen by his fellow citizens for public service, being elected county clerk, auditor and recorder of El Dorado County. In those positions he served with marked efficiency for eight years, having been elected for a second and third term. His fidelity to duty led to his selection to the office of sheriff in 1898, and he is thus now capably serving, discharging his duties without fear or favor. He has made judicious investments of his capital, and in addition to his fine home in Placerville he owns a farm of four hundred and thirty acres of land at Shingle Springs, on which hay, grain and stock are raised. A portion of it is also devoted to the cultivation of fruit, and while Mr. Bosquit resided there the property was one of the most productive and valuable in the county.
On the 12th of October, 1873, our subject was united in marriage to Miss Sarah Catherine Gray, a daughter of Allen T. Gray, a prominent pioneer of 1854 and the founder of Gray’s Flats in El Dorado County. They have three sons, all born in this county, namely: Dallas A., Edwin L. and Owen T., who are residents of Placerville. Mr. Bosquit is a member of the Ancient Order of United Workmen, the Foresters and the Independent Order of Odd Fellows, and in the last named he has filled all the offices and has served as a representative to the grand lodge. He is an active and earnest Democrat, a progressive and enterprising citizen and a thoroughly capable and faithful public officer.
Transcribed by Gerald Iaquinta.
© 2010 Gerald Iaquinta.