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Francis James “Frank” Moffitt

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Francis James “Frank” Moffitt

Birth
Oakland, Alameda County, California, USA
Death
24 Nov 1904 (aged 45)
Oakland, Alameda County, California, USA
Burial
Oakland, Alameda County, California, USA Add to Map
Plot
Section B
Memorial ID
View Source
San Francisco Call, Volume 96, Number 178, 25 November 1904:

FRANK J. MOFFITT PASSES AWAY.
BIDS FAREWELL TO FRIENDS

OAKLAND, Nov. 24. — Just as Thanksgiving morning dawned Frank J. Moffitt gave up the fight that he had been waging against death for three weeks and quietly passed away. His death occurred at 6:25 o'clock. There had been a slight rally yesterday, but the heart, which had been weak and uncertain, finally gave out this morning and there passed away one of the best known men, not alone cf Oakland, but of California. Mr. Moffitt's illness had extended over several years, but it was not until within the last few weeks that anything serious was expected. He had been suffering from both kidney and liver troubles and was compelled to be very careful with his diet. A few weeks ago he dined with a friend and a slight indiscretion in eating intensified his troubles. He took to his bed, his heart began to fail and he was never able to rally. For some time Mr. Moffitt had been convinced that his end was approaching and he met death quietly. He sent for many of his old friends and bade them all good-by. His family was at his bedside when death came. The funeral will take place on Saturday from the late home at the corner of Filbert and Eighteenth streets and service will be held later at the Church of St. Francis de Sales. Interment will be in the Moffitt family plot in St. Mary's Cemetery. Just before his death Mr. Moffitt arranged all of his business affairs. He had accumulated a considerable fortune in the last fifteen years, which is variously estimated at from $250,000 to $500,000. Most of this money was invested in stocks and bonds, he being a heavy holder of Contra Costa Water Company's securities.

Frank J. Moffitt was born in Oakland in 1859. His father was James Moffitt, one of the pioneers and a famous fire chief of the early days. Young Moffitt was educated in the public schools of Oakland. Journalism was his bent, and while yet in young manhood he was attracted to the newspaper field. His first attempt in serious effort was to establish the Enterprise at Newark, where it had been expected a large city would grow as a center of the old South Pacific Coast Railroad. James G. Fair, the principal owner of that system, had planned to make Newark a large community. But after Fair failed in his fight to run the road through Telegraph avenue in Oakland he abandoned development schemes and subsequently sold out the South Pacific Coast line to the Southern Pacific Company. Moffitt conducted the Newark Enterprise for some time, and after the boom burst returned to Oakland, where he engaged in newspaper work, sometimes as correspondent for San Francisco dailies and later as proprietor and editor of the Oakland Weekly Independent. This paper was the beginning of the Oakland Enquirer, for the Independent was purchased by Frank A. Leach and turned into the Enquirer. Later Moffitt secured the Oakland Morning Times, which he ran for some years and which also fell into the hands of Frank A. Leach.

Politics engaged Moffitt's attention early in life, and in this field of activity he developed an ability that placed him for years in the forefront of Democratic party councils. His initiation was in 1884 as a candidate for the Assembly, when he defeated R. M. Apgar in a heavily Republican district. Moffitt served through the session of 1885, and in 1887 after defeating H. A. Powell for the Senate, served a term as State Senator. In that capacity Moffitt became one of the leading men of the State Legislature. In the contest for the election of a United States Senator in 1887 the Democrats had control of the legislature. George Hearst was a candidate and his fight was bandied by Senator Moffitt. Hearst was elected. After completing a term in the Senate Moffitt retired and was appointed a member of the State Forestry Board. He was instrumental in developing many projects for the preservation of the forests of California. He early recognized the importance of their conservation, a work which has become one of the great studies of the National Government.

Senator Moffitt returned to newspaper work after he retired from the Legislature and edited the Oakland Times until it was sold some years ago. From newspaper work and political activities Moffitt became associated with William J. Dingee in the development of the Oakland Water Company. It was Moffitt who, in large measure, carried through the consolidation of the Oakland Water Company and the Contra Costa Water Company, the merged corporations retaining the name of the last named, which was the older company. After the consolidation Senator Moffitt was active in the management of the company.

During the last years of his life Moffitt was very fortunate in his business affairs and amassed a fortune of several hundred thousand dollars. He had large interests in the Contra Costa Water Company, was a heavy stockholder in the Central Bank and owned a block of stock and bonds of the California Portland Cement Company at Napa Junction. All of his investments have been very profitable.

Senator Moffitt lavished money upon his home, a fine residence at the southwest corner of Filbert and Eighteenth streets. He bought many beautiful works of art and adorned the house with much elegance. His surviving family consists of a widow and a son, Jefferson Grant Moffitt, who is 18 years of age. Besides these there are three brothers and four sisters, who are George W., Joseph, Harry, Mary, Margaret, Emma and Nellie Moffitt. Only a short time ago Senator Moffitt bought an elegant home in East Oakland for his sisters. He was generous toward his family and his relatives. His brother Harry is well known as one of the members of the United States secret service department at San Francisco. George has been connected with the Oakland Fire Department for many years. Joseph is a passenger conductor in the Southern Pacific Company's employ.
San Francisco Call, Volume 96, Number 178, 25 November 1904:

FRANK J. MOFFITT PASSES AWAY.
BIDS FAREWELL TO FRIENDS

OAKLAND, Nov. 24. — Just as Thanksgiving morning dawned Frank J. Moffitt gave up the fight that he had been waging against death for three weeks and quietly passed away. His death occurred at 6:25 o'clock. There had been a slight rally yesterday, but the heart, which had been weak and uncertain, finally gave out this morning and there passed away one of the best known men, not alone cf Oakland, but of California. Mr. Moffitt's illness had extended over several years, but it was not until within the last few weeks that anything serious was expected. He had been suffering from both kidney and liver troubles and was compelled to be very careful with his diet. A few weeks ago he dined with a friend and a slight indiscretion in eating intensified his troubles. He took to his bed, his heart began to fail and he was never able to rally. For some time Mr. Moffitt had been convinced that his end was approaching and he met death quietly. He sent for many of his old friends and bade them all good-by. His family was at his bedside when death came. The funeral will take place on Saturday from the late home at the corner of Filbert and Eighteenth streets and service will be held later at the Church of St. Francis de Sales. Interment will be in the Moffitt family plot in St. Mary's Cemetery. Just before his death Mr. Moffitt arranged all of his business affairs. He had accumulated a considerable fortune in the last fifteen years, which is variously estimated at from $250,000 to $500,000. Most of this money was invested in stocks and bonds, he being a heavy holder of Contra Costa Water Company's securities.

Frank J. Moffitt was born in Oakland in 1859. His father was James Moffitt, one of the pioneers and a famous fire chief of the early days. Young Moffitt was educated in the public schools of Oakland. Journalism was his bent, and while yet in young manhood he was attracted to the newspaper field. His first attempt in serious effort was to establish the Enterprise at Newark, where it had been expected a large city would grow as a center of the old South Pacific Coast Railroad. James G. Fair, the principal owner of that system, had planned to make Newark a large community. But after Fair failed in his fight to run the road through Telegraph avenue in Oakland he abandoned development schemes and subsequently sold out the South Pacific Coast line to the Southern Pacific Company. Moffitt conducted the Newark Enterprise for some time, and after the boom burst returned to Oakland, where he engaged in newspaper work, sometimes as correspondent for San Francisco dailies and later as proprietor and editor of the Oakland Weekly Independent. This paper was the beginning of the Oakland Enquirer, for the Independent was purchased by Frank A. Leach and turned into the Enquirer. Later Moffitt secured the Oakland Morning Times, which he ran for some years and which also fell into the hands of Frank A. Leach.

Politics engaged Moffitt's attention early in life, and in this field of activity he developed an ability that placed him for years in the forefront of Democratic party councils. His initiation was in 1884 as a candidate for the Assembly, when he defeated R. M. Apgar in a heavily Republican district. Moffitt served through the session of 1885, and in 1887 after defeating H. A. Powell for the Senate, served a term as State Senator. In that capacity Moffitt became one of the leading men of the State Legislature. In the contest for the election of a United States Senator in 1887 the Democrats had control of the legislature. George Hearst was a candidate and his fight was bandied by Senator Moffitt. Hearst was elected. After completing a term in the Senate Moffitt retired and was appointed a member of the State Forestry Board. He was instrumental in developing many projects for the preservation of the forests of California. He early recognized the importance of their conservation, a work which has become one of the great studies of the National Government.

Senator Moffitt returned to newspaper work after he retired from the Legislature and edited the Oakland Times until it was sold some years ago. From newspaper work and political activities Moffitt became associated with William J. Dingee in the development of the Oakland Water Company. It was Moffitt who, in large measure, carried through the consolidation of the Oakland Water Company and the Contra Costa Water Company, the merged corporations retaining the name of the last named, which was the older company. After the consolidation Senator Moffitt was active in the management of the company.

During the last years of his life Moffitt was very fortunate in his business affairs and amassed a fortune of several hundred thousand dollars. He had large interests in the Contra Costa Water Company, was a heavy stockholder in the Central Bank and owned a block of stock and bonds of the California Portland Cement Company at Napa Junction. All of his investments have been very profitable.

Senator Moffitt lavished money upon his home, a fine residence at the southwest corner of Filbert and Eighteenth streets. He bought many beautiful works of art and adorned the house with much elegance. His surviving family consists of a widow and a son, Jefferson Grant Moffitt, who is 18 years of age. Besides these there are three brothers and four sisters, who are George W., Joseph, Harry, Mary, Margaret, Emma and Nellie Moffitt. Only a short time ago Senator Moffitt bought an elegant home in East Oakland for his sisters. He was generous toward his family and his relatives. His brother Harry is well known as one of the members of the United States secret service department at San Francisco. George has been connected with the Oakland Fire Department for many years. Joseph is a passenger conductor in the Southern Pacific Company's employ.

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