James Carter, a prominent agriculturist and stock-raiser of Castoria township, came to California in 1860 and since 1875 has resided upon his present ranch not far from Atlanta. His property possessions comprise three hundred and twenty acres of rich land, highly cultivated, in the home farm, and he also owns two hundred and forty acres additional in Castoria township.

Mr. Carter is a native of Grant county, Wisconsin, born on the 17th of December, 1838, and in the paternal line is of English lineage. His father, Benjamin R. Carter, was a native of Maryland, and after arriving at years of maturity wedded Eliza A. Lord, who was born in Delaware. They became early settlers of Grant county, Wisconsin, casting in their lot among its pioneer settlers, and it was there that James Carter was reared to manhood. He attended the public schools there and early became familiar with all the duties and labors that fall to the lot of the agriculturist. Attracted by the business opportunities of the west, he resolved to try his fortune on the Pacific coast and in 1860 came to California by way of the isthmus route, going first to New York, thence across Panama and afterward taking passage on a steamer on the Pacific, which at length dropped anchor in the harbor of San Francisco. He did not tarry long at the Golden Gate, however, but came direct to San Joaquin county, and for a number of years resided in various parts of the county. In 1875, however, he settled permanently upon his present ranch and has since carried on agricultural interests here with excellent success.

On the 1st of December, 1872, Mr. Carter was united in marriage to Miss Medora E. kiel, who was born in Grant county, Wisconsin, and is a daughter of Charles B. Kiel, of that county. He was born in Pennsylvania and was of German lineage. He served his county as a Union soldier in the Civil war and laid down his life upon its alter, his death occurring during hostilities, when his daughter Mrs. Carter was but eight years of age. He had married Miss Ann E. Beckwith, also a native of Pennsylvania. Mrs. Kiel brought her family to California when her daughter Mrs. Carter was a maiden of twelve summers. They made the journey by way of the isthmus route and San Francisco, and on reaching San Joaquin county settled in Castoria township, where Mrs. Kiel remained until her death, which occurred on the 16th of February, 1888. Mrs. Carter has since resided in San Joaquin county. By her marriage she has become the mother of ten children, of whom eight are now living: Stephen A.; James W.; Frederick C.; Genevieve O., the wife of William Miller; Edith A.; Benjamin F.; Elsie E. and Mary A. Those who have passed away are nellie S. and Ethel.

Mr. and Mrs. Carter are among the early settlers of Castoria township, where they have a wide acquaintance and are held in the highest esteem by their neighbors and friends. He is a Republican, unfaltering in his advocacy of the principles of the party, and he is now serving as a trustee of the Zinc school district, which position he has filled for nearly twenty years. He has done much to improve the school and to advance the standard of education in this district, and he is equally progressive in his ideas concerning everything that he believes will benefit his county. His life has been an active, useful and honorable one and has been crowned by successful accomplishment.

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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