Hon. E. J. Gregory, who is at present engaged in the patent business in New York city, was for a number of years one of the best known business men of Sacramento, and was also one of the most popular mayors that city ever had. The firm of Gregory Brothers Company, of which he was the head, had a reputation throughout the United States, and was of material benefit in placing California products before the world.
Hon. Eugene J. Gregory, a son of Julius Gregory, who was the founder of the above mentioned produce house, and whose life of activity was beneficial to the city and the trade interests of the entire state, was born in San Francisco, August 15, 1854, so that he is one of the early native sons of California. He grew up in this state, obtaining a thorough business and academic education in the schools of the commonwealth. About 1880 he assumed the management of the business of the Gregory Brothers Company, and for a number of years was actively identified with the introduction of California products to other portions of the country.
His best remembered service to the city, however, was as its efficient mayor. At the municipal election of 1887, at the earnest solicitation of his friends and contrary to his own wishes, he became a candidate for that office. Party lines are drawn quite closely in Sacramento, and as a rule, majorities are never heavy on either side. Mr. Gregory, as the candidate of the Republican party, was elected by a plourality of 1,919 votes, which was the largest plurality ever secured theretofore in the city. This was due to his great popularity and the confidence with which every class of citizens regarded him. He justified expectations by his course as mayor, for he did much to rectify current abuses in the various departments of the municipal government, made careful appointments, and in every way possible introduced business methods into the management of city affairs, so that in many ways he saved large sums of money to the people.
Mr. Gregory affiliates with the Masonic order, in which he is a past master, and also with the Independent Order of Odd Fellows and other orders. He is a man of captivating personality, with a charm and a geniality of manner which gain many friends, and is highly favored in social circles and among his fellow citizens and associates. He is especially esteemed in the city where he so long made his home and of which he was such a capable chief executive. He was married July 3, 1874, to Miss Emma Crump, a native of Sacramento, who has since died. They had one son, Julius, who is now twenty-eight years of age and is associated with his father in the patent business in New York. Mr. Gregory was a trustee of Sutters Fort and a member of the California River Improvement Association; director of the California Midwinter Fair Exposition; director of Museum Association and many other positions of public trust, the duties of which were filled with so much satisfaction to the public that Mr. Gregory's name was prominently mentioned about ten years ago as a candidate on the Republican ticket for governor of California, but his business interests would not permit him to accept the nomination. With his renowned popularity throughout the state, had he consented to accept the nomination, it would have meant his election by an overwhelming majority.
Source: History of the New California Its Resources and People, Volume I
The Lewis Publishing Company - 1905
Edited by Leigh H. Irvine
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