San Francisco County
CHARLES HENRY SPEAR
CHARLES HENRY SPEAR, Town Clerk of Berkeley, was born in Sonora, Tuolumne county, June 1, 1862, a son of Frederick Augustus and Elizabeth Hatch (Burnham) Spear, both natives of Boston and there married in 1848. The father came to California around Cape Horn, arriving in San Francisco in the spring of 1850. Having learned the drug business in Boston and been there engaged in it some years, he brought out a stock of goods in that line with which he started a store in Sacramento. In 1852 he moved to Sonora and continued in the same line with Dr. William A. Bruner as partner, under the style of Bruner & Spear. In 1855 he went back to Boston, remaining a year or more, and on his return, accompanied by his wife and two children, settled again in Sonora in 1857, where he carried on the drug business until 1864. He then received the appointment of druggist to the State Insane Asylum in Stockton under Dr. G. A. Shurtleff, retaining that position until 1873. He revisited Boston with his wife and youngest child, remaining about three years, when he returned to this coast and settled in Oakland. In 1880 he opened a drug store in this city, but moved to Berkeley in 1882, where he continued in the same line until his death in 1885. He was somewhat prominent in pioneer times in Sonora, being City Clerk, deputy Sheriff and deputy Recorder, and was a member of the San Joaquin Valley Society of California Pioneers. Grandfather Henry Spear, a native of Boston and for many years engaged in the printing business in that city, died at about the age of fifty-six. Grandmother Harriet (Clark) Spear, also a native of Boston, lived to the age of eighty. Grandfather Burnham, a native of Vermont and for many years a merchant in Boston, lived to an advanced age, but his wife (nee Hatch) died of apoplexy in middle life. Mrs. Elizabeth H. B. Spear, the mother of the subject of this sketch, born about 1830, is living in Berkeley (1890) the mother of five children: Frederick F., deceased in Berkeley, unmarried, at the age of thirty-six; Ella Margaret Brown, by marriage Mrs. George Bartles of Berkeley; Libbie Florence, now Mrs. John Rooney of Oakland; Charles H., the subject of this sketch, and Belle Harriet, living at her home in Berkeley.
H. Spear was educated in the schools of
H. Spear was married in
Transcribed by Donna L. Becker.
Source: “The Bay of San Francisco,” Vol. 2, Pages 661-662, Lewis Publishing Co, 1892.
© 2006 Donna L. Becker.
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