John Mahon, an honest and enterprising citizen of this county, and one of its extensive hop-growers, was born March 1, 1849, in Ontario, Wentworth County, Canada, his parents being William and Catharine (Ashberry) Mahon,--the former born in County Tyrone, Ireland, and the latter in County Tipperary. Both were small when they emigrated to Canada, where they were afterward married. William Mahon was a blacksmith by trade until so advanced in years that age required a cessation from toil. He and his faithful wife are now living in Wentworth County. They have two children: James, resident in Canada, and John. John Mahon, our subject, was raised in a small village, and was brought up to work. The advantages of an education in early life were somewhat slighted by himself, and since then have been mostly self-acquired. He remained with his parents until thirteen years of age, since which time he has made his own way in the world. He worked six years for a man named George Abrey, who had a farm and saw-mill together. In 1870 he came to California, and commenced life in the golden West; he landed in Sacramento with $30 in his pocket, hired out to a man named Haynie, just east of the city, and remained five years until he failed in business. He owed Mahon $935, of which he paid him thirty cents on the dollar. This was a rough experience for a young man, but, undaunted, he determined to go into business for himself. He leased fifteen acres on the Haggin grant, on the American River, and put it in hops; to this small beginning he added by degrees. In 1882 he came down to the Cosumnes River and leased about fifty acres of C. H. Cantrell, and put thirty acres of it in hops. He was so successful that in 1884 he bought the place, which contains 500 acres. This is part upland and part bottom-land, very rich and productive, and will raise anything. He has now fifty acres in hops, and is one of the largest hop-growers in this county. Besides this, he is doing a general farming and stock-raising business, and paying considerable attention to the raising of fruit, for which he has the soil, climate, and all that is necessary, without irrigation. He has about thirty acres in orchard, principally almonds, just coming into bearing; it is the largest orchard in this part of the country, and as fine as one wishes to see. He is a member of the order of Odd Fellows, which he joined in 1874; he also belongs to Elk Grove Lodge, No. 274. He was married in 1871 to Olive Chalmers, a native of Canada, daughter of Peter and Harriet Chalmers. She came to this State in 1871. They have four children, viz: Katie, born March 18, 1880; John William, June 29, 1882; Olive, November 18, 1884; and Nellie, November 19, 1886.
Transcribed by Karen Pratt.
Davis, Hon. Win. J., An Illustrated History of Sacramento County, California. Page 471-472. Lewis Publishing Company. 1890.
© 2005 Karen Pratt.