Frederick Wastier has been associated with the upbuilding of Lincoln from the earliest inception of the town and his labors have contributed in no small measure to its advancement and progress along substantial lines of development. He arrived in California in September, 1852. His birthplace is Bavaria, Germany, and his natal day the 11th of September, 1829. His parents, Louis and Mary (German) Wastier, were also natives of the fatherland, and in 1852 they crossed the Atlantic to the United States and resided in St. Louis, Missouri. They were farming people, but their last days were spent in the city. They held membership in the Presbyterian Church there and when called to rest their remains were interred in one of the cemeteries of St. Louis. The father died in the sixty-fourth year of his age, while the mother was called to the home beyond in her seventy-sixth year. They had three sons and four daughters.
Frederick Wastier, whose name forms the caption of this article, was educated in his native country and learned the trade of the butcher there. In 1847, when eighteen years of age, he came to the United States, taking up his abode in St. Louis, where he followed his chosen vocation. The discovery of gold in California induced him to try his fortune on the Pacific coast, and in 1852 he crossed the plains with oxen in company with three young men. They traveled in a party of twenty and were five months upon the way; and though the journey was a tedious one they met with no misfortune. When Mr. Wastier arrived at Downieville, Sierra County, he had just twenty dollars in his pocket, and when he reached Sacramento he had just ten cents remaining. However, he at once sought employment, securing work at his trade, for which he received eighty dollars per month and his board. He had been receiving only ten dollars per month in the east, and the difference was so great that he felt well repaid for making the long journey across the arid plains to the Golden state. For three years he remained in Sacramento, during which time he saved his money, thus gaining the nucleus of his present competence.
On the expiration of that period Mr. Wastier went to Butcher’s Ranch, in Placer County, ten miles above Auburn and at that place conducted a meat market for six years. He sold immense quantities of beef, but he was forced to give much credit, and the miners whom he had trusted failed to secure the gold which they had anticipated, so that many of his bills remained unpaid. This led to his removal to Gold Hill, six miles above Lincoln, where he continued business for four years. In 1865 he came to Lincoln and is one of the two first settlers of the town still residing within her borders. Opening a meat market, he supplied the population of the village and the surrounding country with an excellent grade of meats until 1885, when he sold out and for two years engaged in the lumber business, but for some time he has lived retired, enjoying the rest he has richly earned. He has a nice home in the city and is also the owner of several dwellings, the rental of which is a good income.
Mr. Wastier was married in 1863 to Miss Mary Rittenger, a native of Switzerland. Unto them has been born a son, Frederick Wastier, who is in business in San Francisco. After two years of a happy married life the wife and mother died, and in 1870 Mr. Wastier was joined in wedlock to Miss Elizabeth Shake. They have two daughters: Mary Elizabeth, now the wife of Charles Edward Finney, a merchant of Lincoln; and Emily Louisa, who is at home with her parents. Mrs. Wastier and her daughters are valued members of the Catholic Church and our subject is identified with the Independent Order of Odd Fellows. He has been a life-long Republican. He was one of the first trustees of the town, and either in office or out of it he has supported the various measures that have been advanced for the benefit of the city and its upbuilding. He is a most highly respected and reliable citizen who enjoys the esteem of young and old, rich and poor. He has reached the psalmist’s span of three-score years and ten and can look back over the past without regret, for in all life’s relations he has merited the respect of those with whom he has associated.
Transcribed by Gerald Iaquinta.
© 2010 Gerald Iaquinta.