Jesus M. DeLeon, well known in connection with agricultural interests and as a stock-raiser of San Joaquin county, makes his home near Brandt's Bridge on the San Joaquin river and has resided upon his present farm since 1890, during which period his labors have wrought a great transformation in its appearance, making it one of the highly cultivated tracts in this portion of the county. In 1879 he arrived in the county and resided on Union Island until he took up his abode on Roberts Island fourteen years ago.
Mr. DeLeon is a native of northern Mexico, born on Christmas day of 1853. He was reared in his native country until fifteen years of age, when he went to Glasgow, Scotland, where he attended school for a short time, being under the guidance of the Mexican consul there. Returning, however, to America, he located in Texas and made his home in San Antonio for a short period. He afterward organized a troop of Mexican cowboys and gave exhibitions at Cincinnati, Ohio, and many of the principal cities of the United States. He became a well known showman and brought to the American people a knowledge of the life among the Mexican cowboys and their methods of handling wild horses and cattle on the plains. He continued in the business for a year and through the succeeding three years was employed by the famous showman, P. T. Barnam, in training women riders in a building known as the American Institute in New York city. He was also connected with the great American hippodrome owned by P. T. Barnum, being one of the performers therewith. Thus several years of his life were passed. He is also the composer of "Indian Life or Chase for a Wife." Subsequently in association with a partnership Mr. DeLeon was engaged in the show business in Europe for a short time. He holds the record as the champion long distance horseback rider of the world.
After his return from Europe in New York Mr. DeLeon was married on the 15th of March, 1874, to Miss Mary A. McGrath, and they became the parents of four children: George, who is now living in San Francisco, California; Alvino, a resident of San Joaquin county; Frank, who is living in San Francisco; and Beatrice, of San Joaquin county. After his marriage Mr. DeLeon brought his family to California, settling in San Joaquin county in 1879. He turned his attention to agricultural interests and resided on Union Island for about eleven years, since which time he has made his home on Roberts Island and has engaged in the cultivation of the cereals best adapted to the soil and climate and also to the raising of stock. His business here has been carefully conducted, and the success which he has achieved is well merited.
Mr. DeLeon is a Democrat in his political affiliations and has served as a trustee of the Fairchild school district. He was for several years a director of the Reclamation district No. 544, in which he resides, and the cause of education and every measure for the general good elicit his commendation, his co-operation and his support. He is a member of the Independent Order of Odd Fellows, belonging to Sumner Lodge No. 177, at Tracy, California. One of the old settlers of this locality, he has seen many changes here, has watched the development of the land as it has been transformed into valuable ranches, has seen the building of cities and the introduction of all modern improvements and accessories. His aid has been a factor in promoting public progress, and throughout the community in which he has so long resided he enjoys the high esteem and confidence of his neighbors and friends.
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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