Captain Gerhard F. Terschuren, residing in San Francisco, yet spending a part of his time in Sacramento county, where he owns a ranch of three hundred and twenty-five acres on Brannan Island, has for many years been a resident of the state, and has been closely connected with business interests and public measures which have furthered the progress and improvement of Central California. He was born in Prussia, Germany, October 18, 1843, and is a son of Wilhelm and Mary (Vonder-Heidt) Terschuren, also natives of Prussia. He spent the first fourteen years of his life in his native land, during which time he attended the public schools, and then went to sea, spending several years in a sea-faring life, being engaged most of that time in the coasting trade of Australia. He also engaged for a time in mining gold in that country, and in 1865 he came from Australia to the United States, since which time he has resided in California. For over a quarter of a century he was actively engaged in steamboating on the Sacramento and San Joaquin rivers, and for thirty years was a licensed master, during which time he was in command of a number of steamers. He was one of the well known steamboat captains on the Sacramento and San Joaqin rivers. In later years he invested his capital in property and among his holdings is his ranch on Brannan Island, covering three hundred and twenty-five actes, which is a well developed and highly cultivated tract of land. He makes his home, however, in San Francisco, living at No. 1809 Laguna street.

Captain Terschuren was married March 6, 1878, to Miss Jennie M. Cunningham, a native of California and a daughter of John F. Cunningham, of Sonoma county, this state. They became the parents of six children, of whom five are living: Edith M., the wife of Dr. T. U. Smythe, of San Francisco; William, living on Brannan Island; Gerhard F., also on Brannan Island; Edna and Helen, at home in San Francisco; and Ethel, deceased.

Captain Terschuren is a member of Magnolia Lodge No. 26, I. O. O. F., at San Francisco, and Magnolia Lodge, A. O. U. W., of that city. His life has been a busy one, for realizing that labor is the basis of all success, he has worked earnestly and persistenly as the years have passed by, and what he has accomplished in the business world is the result of his close application and diligence. His life, too, has been somewhat eventful, including his experiences as a sailor off the Australian coast, his work in the mines and his ioneer life in California, and his history, if written in detail, would contain many chapters of deep interest.

Source: History of the New California - Its Resources and People, Volume II

The Lewis Publishing Company - 1905
Edited by Leigh H. Irvine

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