To Jesse Penton, landscape gardener of San Mateo, can be attributed the beauties of many of the pretentious estates for which the peninsula is famed. Mr. Penton has made San Mateo county his home for the last forty-five years and during that time he has laid out and superintended the gardening of many of the county’s show places.
Hundreds of the homes around San Mateo owe their floral embellishments to Mr. Penton, but the work for which he is best known was done on the estates of Harry Hastings, Mrs. Bothin, R. G. Hooker, Henry P. Bowie, and C. Frederick Kohl, the Kohl property being at that time in the possession of Alexander Austin.
In many of his early undertakings Mr. Penton was associated with John McLaren; and when Mr. McLaren left to take charge of Golden Gate Park, Mr. Penton carried on important work that he had started on the peninsula. Mr. Penton has had charge of the Cherry Canyon Water Company for years, and under his supervision its development took place and its large distributing system was built.
Mr. Penton was a member of the building committee of the Masonic Hall Association. He unselfishly surrendered a great part of his time and energy to this project.
James Penton was born near Winchester, England on October 2, 1842. He left his home in 1872 and came directly to Millbrae to D. O. Mills’ estate and has been a resident of San Mateo county ever since. At present he lives with his family in his own home, 124 Santa Inez. Mr. Penton was married at the Grace Church in New York on February 18, 1907. Mr. Penton is a Mason of high standing and was one of the charter members of the Order of the Eastern Star in San Mateo.
Transcribed by Betty Wilson
Source: History of San Mateo County by Philip W. Alexander & Charles P. Hamm page 113-114. Press of Burlingame Publishing Co., Burlingame, CA. 1916.
© 2004 Betty Wilson.
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