Leon Villinger, of Lodi, belongs to the native sons of San Joaquin county, where he was born November 5, 1854, and he has spent practically all his life in the vicinity of Lodi. He is now the owner and the sexton of the Lodi cemetery, to which he devotes most of his time and attention, maintaining it at a high standard of beauty and as a place which may be an object of pride to the citizens of the community. Farming and viticulture have formed the basic pursuits of Mr. Villinger's career, and besides being successful from a material standpoint he has gained the lasting esteem of his fellow men.
Mr. Villinger's parents were Leon and Mary (Perchia) Villinger, his father a native of Germany and his mother of France. His father came to this country from Germany in 1850, and by way of New Orleans arrived in California the same yeaar, settling near Lodi, San Joaquin county, where he was engaged in agriculture until his death, which occurred in 1874. He was a pioneer citizen and farmer of the county, and was a factor of value in the development of the country during its early days. His widow survives him, residing with her son-in-law Mr. A. Goodwin, at Fullerton, this state, and now in her eighty-fifth year she is one of the aged and venerable pioneer women of the state. Of the children of these parents five survive, as follows: Lucian, in Riverside county; Asa, in Covina, this state; John, in Covina; Leon; and Catherine, wife of A. Goodwin, of Fullerton.
Reared on his father's farm near Lodi and receiving his education in the local public schools, Mr. Villinger early took hold of the practical duties of life, and for thirty odd years has been creditably performing his own part in life. He was married, August 15, 1876, to Miss Mary E. McCoy, a sister of Dan McCoy, of San Joaquin county. Six children were born to Mr. and Mrs. Villinger, and they still have three of them, Charles L., Fred and Edith E.
For several years after his marriage Mr. Villinger was engaged in farming about three miles east of Lodi, after which he moved to Santa Ana, in southern California, where for several years he was employed in raising stock. In December 1893, he returned to San Joaquin county and began the grape culture industry near Lodi, which he continued until 1903, in which year he became owner of the Lodi cemetery.
Mr. Villinger is a Republican in politics. He affiliates with Lodi Lodge, I. O. O. F., at Lodi, and is well known and popular throughout his home locality.
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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