Tuesday, February 11, 2014

Grandpa John Davis

My dad's father was born in Scotland.  Dad recalled that he had a strong Scottish brogue.  He called my dad Laddie and my aunt Maude Lassie.  He talked very little about his past.  He was a short stocky man, probably 5 ft. 8 ins. tall.  He had a moustache.  What little we know about grandpas life before he married my Grandmother we have gleaned from an article written about him when he was a mill owner in Arcata.  He told the family that he learned the tanning trade as an apprentice in Edinbourough, Scotland when he was a boy.  He also said that his family was poor and had many children.  He ran away when he was still young and sailed on a ship from Edinbourough.

He also mentioned sailing from Scotland to Australia and the Sandwich islands( Hawaii) before he went to Canada and then to California. He married my Grandmother when he was 50 and she was 20.  He loved her very much and bought her a lovely home, completely furnished.

At one point he bought his own Tanning Mill in Arcata something like the one depicted. He was quite wealthy at the time and was able to take care of his young family well.  He was a kind man and very affectionate with his children.

John Davis was known as an honest man.  His word was his bond, and if he shook hands on any deal it was considered binding to anyone he dealt with.

Grandpa smoked a pipe and Dad remembers when he picked it up to play with it as a child and was disciplined for that.  He knew after that to never touch Grandpa's pipe. Because of his pipe smoking he contracted Cancer of the mouth.  He eventually died of Cancer after a long illness. 

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