Patrick H. Murphy, who though one of the pioneer residents of Sacramento county is till on the safe side of the age of three score and ten, came to this state in boyhood, but even then an active participant in the industrial activity which has marked his career throughout. His beautiful ranch estate on the Jackson road near Perkins he settled upon in its primitive state as long ago as 1859, and during the long interim of years has brought his land into a high state of cultivation. Most of the one hundred and sixty-two acres comprising his ranch is devoted to general farming, but, as a pioneer fruit grower in this part of the state, he has twenty-five acres in grapes and eight acres in other fruits.

Mr. Murphy was born in St. Louis, Missouri, June 15, 1838. Reared during early boyhood in St. Louis, where he gained a common school education, he was only a lad of sixteen when he crossed the plains to California. In 1854 joining a stock train owned by Lankershin, Wiles and McCoy, a company of St. Louis men, he drove an ox team in that train and in every way took the part of a regular man of the outfit. On several occasions they had trouble with the Indians, and their experiences were of the true frontier variety. On reaching the Humboldt river in Nevada they paid the traders there as much as twenty-five cents a pound for potatoes nd one dollar a pound for flour. Six months and two days were consumed in the journey from St. Louis to Sacramento county. After spending several years in various pursuits Mr. Murphy, in 1859, pre-empted one hundred and sixty acres of government land where his present ranch is located, paying the regular price of one dollar and a quarter an acres, and the patent to the land is signed by Abraham Lincoln. This land had not been hitherto touched in an agricultural way, and the transformation which has been effected in its appearance and productiveness is the result entirely of Mr. Murphy's labors and management. The raising of fine stock, such as shorthorn cattle, Percheron horses and Poland-China and Berkshire hogs, has for a number of years been an important feature of Mr. Murphy's establishment. He was among the first to embark in the business of growing fruit in this part of the state.

When it comes to the matters that concern the civic life of the community Mr. Murphy has taken a very public-spirited part. He served as justice of the peace of Brighton township; for three terms was constable; was school trustee of Washington district a number of years. In politics he is Republican. He has served several terms as director of the Florin Fruit Growers' Association, being now in his fourth term as such. Fraternally he has membership with Capital Lodge No. 87, I. O. O. F., at Sacramento. Although no longer connected with grange work, he was a charter member of Sacramento Grange No. 12, and served as treasurer of the same.

Mr. Murphy married, first, Miss Mary Gibbs, a native of the state of Ohio. There were six children by that union, and the three now living are Mrs. Clara A. McDonald, who lives at Perkins; Arthur D. and Ralph I., of Sacramento county, successful farmers on the Cosumne river. The present Mrs. Murphy before her marriage was Miss Carrie Jackman. She was born in New Hampshire. Six children have been born to them, but one is deceased, the others being William C., George A., Corda L., Harry L. and Elmer, all in Sacramento county.

Source: History of the New California - Its Resources and People, Volume II

The Lewis Publishing Company - 1905
Edited by Leigh H. Irvine

Return to Biographies Index, Volume II

Return to California AHGP home page

Return to Sacramento County AHGP home page