FRANK H. FARRAR
The trials, triumphs and vicissitudes of life are vividly illustrated in the career of Frank H. Farrar, now City Attorney for Merced. He was born in Mississippi in 1848. His father, Rev. Wm. M. Farrar, was editor of the Mississippi Baptist, the official organ of the Baptist Church in the State of Mississippi. His son, Frank H. Farrar, was educated at the Mississippi College in Clinton and had progressed in his studies as far as the Freshman class. In 1863, at the age of 15, he enlisted in the Confederate service under General Longstreet and served in the Army of Virginia until Lee surrendered at Appomattox Court House. He was in the celebrated charge at the battle of Gettysburg made by Pickett. The fortunes of war left his family almost penniless, and consequently he commenced to set type at his old home.
Brother Farrar worked at his trade four years, until 1869, when he came to California and settled in Merced. In 1872 he entered the law office of Hon. P. D. Wigginton as a student of law. For a term of two years, until 1875, he was editor and publisher of the Merced Express, when he returned to the practice of his profession, forming a partnership with his old preceptor, Mr. Wigginton. In 1879 he was elected District Attorney of Merced county, and was re-elected in 1882 to the same office.
In 1873 Brother Farrar married Miss Udola Peck, a most estimable young woman---a union that has been blessed with two very promising boys.
In 1874 he joined Yosemite Lodge, No. 30, Knights of Pythias, and from that period he has taken a deep interest in this Lodge and in the Order at large. From the time he entered the Grand Lodge until he was Grand Chancellor in 1887, he was a member of the most important committees and Vice-Grand Chancellor two terms, 1885 and 1886.
Nature has endowed him with an extraordinary bright intellect and remarkable gifts as an orator. His public speeches are notable, and especially the one given as an address of welcome to General Grant, at the time he visited Merced, was a masterpiece of refined elegance, classical rhetoric and patriotic oratory. His power of speech, fine address and magnetic influence before a jury have given him great standing and extensive practice.
Brother Farrar is not large of stature, but is of a fine physique, genial nature, and has a very attractive appearance. He has passed through an ordeal of trial, privation and adversity in the calamities of civil war, and by his own efforts made himself one of the foremost men of our State. He is loved, esteemed, and has higher prospects awaiting him---civic, political and fraternal.
In this time of extravagance, effeminacy and degeneracy of young men we can quote with approbation the courage of Brother Farrar as one who has fitly exemplified the possibilities for a man to outlive misfortune and become an educated, useful and honored American citizen.
Transcribed By: Cecelia M. Setty.
Source: “Illustrated Fraternal Directory Including Educational Institutions on the Pacific Coast”, Page 222, Publ. Bancroft Co., San Francisco. Cal. 1889.
© 2012 Cecelia M. Setty.