Success comes not to the man who idly waits but to the faithful toiler whose work is characterized by intelligence and force and who has the foresight and keenness of mental vision to know where and when and how to exert his energies. Thus it happens that but a small portion of those who enter the world's broad field of battle come off victors in the struggle for wealth and position. Some lack perseverance, others business sagacity and still others are dilatory or negligent, but Mr. Jordan possesses the undaunted spirit and business enterprise which have developed and are devloping the marvelous resources of the western states and territories. There have been in his life history obstacles and difficulties which would have utterly discouraged many a man of less resolute spirit, but he has persevered in the face of those who know aught of his career, his business connection being that of clerk of the supreme court of the state.
Frank Chester Jordan was born in Shasta county, California, on the 3d of April, 1860, and is a son of Robert K. and Maria (Chidester) Jordan. His father was a native of Maine and in the year 1859 came to California, settling in Shasta county, while later he resided near Oakland, where he engaged in agricultural pursuits.
In the public schools of Oakland, Frank C. Jordan pursued his education until twelve years of age, when he began to earn his own living, being employed as a farm hand until sixteen years of age. He afterward accepted a position as a clerk with the Real Estate Union, a building association of Oakland, and was later a clerk with the Aetna Insurance Company. Subsequently he was a law clerk and private secretary to Senator Vrooman, his brother-in-law, from 1881 until 1886, and in the latter year became a deputy in the state law library, whil ein 1887-88 he was a bookkeeper in the Oakland Bank of Savings. His next step in business was an independent venture, for he embarked in a printing and stationery enterprise in 1889, continuing it until 1892. In 1894 he was elected county clerk of Alameda county, California, for a term of four years, receiving a majority of eighteen hundred. In 1898 he was re-elected and received a majority of six hundred in a vote of twenty-one thousand. on the 22d of August, 1902, he was nominated for the position of clerk of the supreme court of California, and on the 6th of November following was elected to that office by a majority of fifty-one thousand two hundred and seventy-four ranking the third among the successful candidates of his party. His term will continue until the 1st of January, 1907. In his home county Mr. Jordan received a majority of ninety-one hundred and fifty, a fact which attests his personal popularity.
In May, 1881, Mr. Jordan was united in marriage to Miss Emma D. Morrill, a native of Boston, Massachusetts, and they now have four children, two sons and two daughters, Robert, Frank, Grace and Nettie. Mr. Jordan belongs to the Masonic fraternity and holds membership relations with the Native Sons of the Golden West, the Independent Order of Odd Fellows, the Eagles, the Modern Woodmen of America, the Press Club of San Francisco, the Union League Club of San Francisco, the Nile Club of Oakland and the Reliance Club of Oakland. His life has been a strenuous one as he has had to fight his way in the world, but is winning in the strife. He had no opportunity for securing an education, and his youth was beset with difficulties which would have utterly discouraged many a man. He met failure in business in 1892 and his health became so impaired that the doctors gave no hope of his recovery, but instead of losing heart he with strong determination rallied his powers and has eventually wo for himself a position of prominence in the political world and at the same time has gained in the respect of all. He is to-day a leader in the ranks of the Republican party in Californis, and his life has been characterized by those traits which are so often manifest in the sons of the far west, whose labors have led to the splendid development of this section of the country.
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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