My Great-Grandfather Alexander brought his small family in to Los Angeles, California on January 1, 1901 from Hamilton, Ontario, Canada. Supposedly this was for my grandmother’s health since she suffered from lung problems in winter. She was 11 when they got here.
Alex set up his bakery on Vermont Ave not far from the local Presbyterian Church , Westminster Pres near downtown. My Great-Grandmother Mary Jane had a hobby of buying property around them and at one point from the deeds we have seems to have owned at least one whole block of Vermont Ave. But she also bought one of the first properties for sale on what is now Balboa Island. It was still an isthmus when they bought it and built a tiny house on Pearl.
My mom said their used to be a plug like a bathtub plug at the end of the street and when they were feeling mischievous they would pull the plug on the street and instead of stopping up the sea it would flood the street.
Alex, according to my mother loved to row to the Mainland everyday for the newspaper instead of taking the ferry. One morning he rowed over for the newspaper as usual and at some point on the way back, pulled his hat down over his eyes and laid back and crossed his arms after shipping the oars. The neighbors found him at their dock with a smile on his face. He died doing what he loved to do.
This is my great- grandfather, Alex, my brother looked a lot like him. See yesterday’s picture. He was a baker, first in Canada and then here in Los Angeles after they moved here in 1901.