Saturday, November 29, 2008

William Hill & Robert McClintock – Pioneer Thresher & Teamster

William Hill (standing on the far left) bought and brought the first threshing machine to Orange County and operated it throughout Southern California. His neighbor Robert McClintock was also his brother-in-law by his first wife Sarah. Together these two men controlled all of the early threshing and much of the local heavy ground shipment resources. Below are three McClintock teams loaded and ready to roll from the Hellman tract; the teamsters are Bill McClintock (l), Bob McClintock (m) and Nate Harmon (r). The biographies of William Hill and Robert McClintock are also provided in this blog entry.

WILLIAM J. HILL -- Born in the north of Ireland of Scotch-Irish ancestry, William J. Hill came to America when a young man and after a short stay in New York City continued his journey on to California. After spending three years in San Francisco, in 1868 he came to Southern California and in Los Angeles County purchased land. He first bargained for eighty acres of unimproved land, for which he paid $10 per acre, beginning to improve it by building a small house and plowing some of the land. He put out eucalyptus and forest trees, also pines and evergreens, and a little later put out peaches, pears, apricots and prunes for home use. He raised grain on his ranch and also bought a threshing outfit and followed that business throughout Southern California for several years and became very well known. As he prospered he bought another forty acres which he put into grain. This is considered very valuable property, as oil has been developed on adjacent land. This and the home place has a valuation of about $400 an acre.

Mr. Hill was married, in 1880, to Sarah McClintock, by whom four children were born; Robert Hill; Sarah, in Los Angeles; Lizzie, the wife of Willard Aldrich; and Annie Hill, of San Francisco. Mrs. Hill passed away in 1890 and in 1891 occurred the marriage of Mr. Hill to Blanche L. Spielman. Of this union eight children were born, four daughters and four sons, as follows: Blanche, Edith, Laura, and Jessie, and Harry, George, William and Theodore. In politics Mr. Hill is a Republican, but has never sought office. He and his wife are members of the Episcopal Church of Anaheim. Mr. Hill is a member and past grand of Anaheim Lodge, I.O.O.F., a member and past grand patriarch of the Encampment, is past commander of Anaheim Tent, K.O.T.M., and he and his wife are members of the Rebekahs.

Mr. Hill has been a resident of Orange County for over forty-two years and took an active part in its organization as a separate county. He is numbered among the very oldest settlers in this locality and has seen the development of the raw land into productive ranches and the building up of the cities and towns throughout all of Southern California. By all who know him he is recognized as one of the public spirited citizens of Orange County.

Armor, Samuel (ed.), History of Orange County California with Biographical Sketches, pages 699-700. Los Angeles: Historic Record Company, 1911

ROBERT MCCLINTOCK -- The early memories of Mr. McClintock are centered around his home in northern Ireland, where he was born, in County Tyrone, in 1857. His parents were natives and life-time residents of the Emerald Isle, and he himself was reared in his native surroundings until attaining young manhood. At the age of nineteen he came to America and the vessel on which he sailed dropped anchor in a Canadian port. For two years thereafter he remained in that locality, having found employment in a store. From there he went to Philadelphia, remaining there for the same length of time, after which, in 1882, he came across the continent to California. Settling in Garden Grove, Orange county, in 1882, he worked on ranches in that locality for a number of years, or until 1888, when he came to Westminster and assumed the lease of sixteen hundred acres of the Hellman tract. His first crop consisted of corn and potatoes, but of late he has made a specialty of raising barley and oats. During the year 1909 he gathered twelve hundred and ninety-six tons of barley hay. Fifty head of horses are employed in the care and harvesting of the crops. The raising of fine draft horses is also an important feature of the ranch, an enterprise started in 1902, when Mr. McClintock imported three fine Clydesdale stallions from Scotland. He not only raises stock for his own use, but also raises them for the market, and from his branch alone he realizes a handsome income.

Before coming to the west, Mr. McClintock was married in Philadelphia, Pa., in 1882, to Isabella Rankin, and five children, three sons and two daughters, have been born to them, Robert J., Mary E. (a teacher in the public school at Westminster), Anna B., William J. and David H. All of the sons assist in the maintenance of the ranch and their help and co-operation have contributed largely to the success of the enterprise. The family are communicants and members of the Presbyterian Church, and fraternally Mr. McClintock belongs to Westminster Lodge No. 72, I.O.O.F., and to the Woodmen of the World. Politically he is a Republican.

Armor, Samuel (ed.), History of Orange County California with Biographical Sketches, pages 565-566. Los Angeles: Historic Record Company, 1911

1 comment:

Phyllis Beach said... name is Phyllis Beach and I believe the Robert McClintock that you noted in your blog was my Great great grandfather on my mothers side. My mother was Mary Elizabeth Taylor and her morther was Anna B Taylor (nee McClintock) daughter of Robert. Wondering if there were any other info photos that you might have as I am working with and building my family tree. Thanks so much for any is greatly appreciated.