The orange groves of California have a worldwide reputation. Their fruit is found upon the Atlantic seaports, in the Mississippi Valley and in the far northern states, and the annual export from each grove adds materially to the prosperity of this commonwealth. Extensively and successfully engaged in the cultivation of his fruits, David Emart is well known among the representatives of the horticultural interests of Stanislaus County. He owns a fine farm and handsome residence, which are pleasantly, situated a mile and a half west of Knight’s Ferry.
Mr. Emart was born in Wayne County, Ohio, on the 1st of April, 1834, and represents one of the old Pennsylvania Dutch families. His father, George Emart, was a native of the Keystone state, and both he and his wife died when their son David was a small child. He then went to live with Anthony Wagener, with whom he remained until his twelfth year, when he became an inmate of the home of John Emerson. They resided in a wild frontier district in the midst of the forest and he had small opportunity to attend school, but acquired a fair education through reading, observation and experience, and is now an intelligent and well informed man who is successfully following farming and fruit-raising. In the east he married Miss Nancy Shafer, and in Iowa he followed farming until 1864, when he was induced to dispose of his good property there, taking in exchange nine hundred dollars in cash and a mine in Monterey County, California; but the latter proved to be worthless. He and his brothers, Joseph and John, and his father-in-law and his family all came together to California, crossing the plains with horse teams. They were six months on the journey and spent the first winter in Napa, where Mr. Emart learned that his mining property was worthless. As it was necessary for him to immediately engage in a paying business in order to provide for his family, he purchased a threshing machine and followed threshing, in the San Jose Valley, for a number of years.
In 1886 Mr. Emart purchased his present farm, comprising two hundred acres, which is pleasantly located one and a half miles west of Knights’ Ferry. There he has a splendid orange grove and is also engaged in raising wheat and alfalfa, the fruit which he raises being of an excellent quality, finding a ready sale in the markets, and he has no trouble in disposing of his other crops. His residence and grounds are most attractive in appearance, the place being characterized by an air of neatness and thrift which indicate the careful supervision of the owner, while in the home are many conveniences and evidences of the refined taste of Mrs. Emart. One child was born to them in Iowa, Jacob, whom they brought with them to California, and here two sons and a daughter have been added to the family, namely: John, Charles and Lillie, the last named being now the wife of William Murry, by whom she has two daughters. Charles is also married. Jacob is in Stanislaus County and John and Charles are farmers in Stanislaus County, living two miles northwest of Knight’s Ferry. The family is one of high respectability, the members occupying leading positions in social circles. Mrs. Emart is a valued member of the Methodist Church, and Mr. Emart affiliates with the Democrats, but has never sought or desired public office, his attention being fully occupied with his business affairs, in which he is meeting with signal success, carrying on operations in lines of industry and honesty that never fail to bring a desirable reward.
Transcribed by Gerald Iaquinta.
© 2010 Gerald Iaquinta.