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Orange County









The late George W. Minter was a community builder of Southern California who developed what are today recognized as some of the choicest residential sections in Santa Ana, Orange County, where the period of his residence covered more than half a century. He was born in Clay County, Missouri, May 30, 1850, one in a family of nine children.

George W. Minter was educated in the country schools of his home county and in early youth joined a government freight train that had been outfitted by his father, Robert Minter, crossing the plains to Utah, right after the Civil War. In 1874, when a young man of twenty-four years, he came to California, making the journey overland to San Francisco and thence by boat to Wilmington, Los Angeles County. Later in the same year he arrived in Orange County. His first employment was on the docks at the time when boats entered Newport Bay and landed merchandise at what was known as Newport Landing. He was industrious and ambitious and in a few years branched out into independent ventures. Soon he became a successful farmer and walnut grower, and from that time forward his progress was assured. He gained wide recognition as one of the community builders of this part of the state. His agricultural activities were profitable and subsequently he became extremely active in the field of real estate. He opened up and put on the market what are today recognized as some of the choicest residential sections in Santa Ana, one of these subdivisions being in the eastern part of the city. Minter Street was named in his honor. The work of the Chamber of Commerce, banking activities and projects for civic improvement all claimed his attention for many years. Mr. Minter was especially proud of Birch Park, and for a number of years he served as a member of the park commission. He was interested in the first street-car line in Orange County, horse-drawn cars running between Santa Ana and Tustin, and was one of the original owners of the property. At the time of his death he was a director of the First National Bank of Santa Ana. Mr. Minter was one of the most ardent workers in the campaign for the creation of Orange County, and he was serving a deputy assessor of Los Angeles County at the time Orange County was separated therefrom. By reason of his comprehensive and thorough knowledge of real estate he served as appraiser for the Orange County Savings Bank and later for the First National Bank.

On the 9th of October, 1879, Mr. Minter was united in marriage to Miss Elizabeth Berry, a daughter of Henry and Elizabeth Berry and member of a prominent pioneer family of Santa Ana. Birch Park in Santa Ana was named in honor of a brother-in-law and a sister of Mrs. Minter. Mr. and Mrs. Minter became the parents of two daughters; Emma Blanche, who died April 28, 1921; and Lula M., residing in Santa Ana. The wife and mother passed away November 3, 1920, in Santa Ana, being survived by the husband and father, whose death occurred May 14, 1927, when he had reached the age of seventy-seven years. Mr. Minter resided in his home at 322 West Third Street, opposite Birch Park, for a period covering forty-nine years. He enjoyed the warm regard, esteem and respect of all who knew him, for he was a genial, companionable gentleman, a safe adviser and an honest and loyal citizen. Fraternally he was identified with the following Masonic bodies: Santa Ana Lodge, No. 241, F. & A. M.; Santa Ana Chapter, No. 73, R. A. M.; Santa Ana Commandery, No. 36, K. T.; and Al Malaikah Temple, A. A. O. N. M. S., of Los Angeles. He served on the exemption board several months during the World War and was one of the organizers and a president of the Chamber of Commerce.

Lula M. Minter, the surviving daughter of George W. and Elizabeth (Berry) Minter, is a member of the Baptist Church, also belongs to the Ebell Club and has ever manifested a keen and helpful interest in civic affairs. She has traveled extensively, having made many trips to Europe and a trip around the world. She resides in the old family home at 322 West Third Street, Santa Ana, which was built in 1879 by her maternal grandfather, Henry Berry.



Transcribed by Bill Simpkins.

Source: California of the South Vol. II, by John Steven McGroarty, Pages 67-69, Clarke Publ., Chicago, Los Angeles, Indianapolis. 1933.

2012 Bill Simpkins.