William H. Dixon, farmer and stock-raiser of Sacramento county, has his large ranch and residence on the Cosumne river, near the post-office of Cosumne, about twenty miles southeast of the city of Sacramento. Mr. Dixon has spent something more than thirty-five years in this locality, and is one of its most successful and honored citizens. A mechanical trade was the foundation of his success, and for some years after finding a home in this state he followed blacksmithing, from which he turned to ranching. he is a prosperous man of affairs, is a public-spirited citizen, and wields his influence for permanent progress in his community.

Mr. Dixon was born in Durham county, England, January 1, 1833. His parents were Michael and Elizabeth (Wilkes) Dixon, both natives of England, and the family had existed in that country for many generations. Mr. Dixon was reared and received his early education in England, and when sixteen years old began learning the blacksmith trade. He served an apprenticeship of five years, and became a finished workman in that art. He worked for some time as a journeyman in England, and in 1856 left his native land and emigrated to London, Ontario. For nearly three years he was employed as a blacksmith in the locomotive shops of the Great Western (now the Grand Trunk) Railway, at London. He gave up this work in 1858 in order to find a home on the Pacific coast. He sailed from New York, and by way of the straits of Magellan arrived, after being fourteen weeks en voyage, at San Francisco. In the same year he came to Sacramento county, and for a time did blacksmithing in Michigan Bar. In 1859 he started a blacksmith shp in Cosumne, and for some years did a very profitable and steady business there.

In 1868 Mr. Dixon turned his attention to agricultural enterprise, and this industry has absorbed his time and energies ever since. In that year he settled on his present ranch, and for more than thirty-five years has seen his own possessions improve and expand and the community grow and prosper. The Dixon ranch contains forty-five hundred acres of land, devoted to general farming and cattle and sheep raising. He is one of the best known sheet men in Sacramento county. He keeps on his ranch about three throusand head of sheep, and between four hundred and five hundred cattle.

Mr. Dixon has served as a trustee of the Wilson school district for some years, and a portion of the time as clerk of the board. He is one of the prominent Masons of his locality, and is identified with the order at Sacramento. A Republican in politics and public-spirited in all affairs, he accomplishes much for the general welfare as also for his own prosperity.

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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