Among the residents of Colusa County who have gained a State reputation is W. F. Goad, now living in San Francisco. He is a native of Hopkins County, Kentucky, and a son of Peter Goad, a Virginian by birth. His father was a farmer, and on the parental acres young Goad learned the honorable occupation of tilling the soil. His education was obtained in the schools of his native State. He remained on his father’s farm until twenty years of age, when he made up his mind to seek his fortune in the gold mines of California. Accordingly, on April 3, 1852, he set out overland with an ox-train for this State, accompanied by his brother, J. C., now a resident of Tulare County. Arriving at Beckwith Pass, August 22 of the same year, in the Sierra Nevadas, he engaged in mining for one year, meeting with fair success. This life, however, was not to his liking, and in the following winter he came to Colusa County, where he purchased a farm, and once more engaged in tilling the soil. He took a deep interest in public affairs, being a prominent Democrat. In 1857 he was elected County Clerk, which position he held three successive terms. In the meantime he took up the study of law, and in 1863 he was admitted to practice before the Supreme Court of the State. He engaged in the practice of his profession in Colusa, and in 1867 he was elected to the office of District Attorney. In 1870 he assisted in organizing the Colusa County Bank, of which he was president for twelve years, and is still a director and stockholder. In 1876 he made a visit to his old home in the Blue-grass State, the Centennial celebration at Philadelphia, and the national capital. While in Washington he was admitted to practice before the United States Supreme Court. In 1880 he made a tour of Europe, accompanied by his wife, visiting the principal places of interest in England, Scotland, Egypt, Palestine, and the Continental countries. Upon his return he located in San Francisco in the practice of his profession. He was not to settle down to private life, however, as the people recognized his ability, and he was twice elected a member of the Board of Education of that city, during each term of which he was president of that body. He has ever been a warm friend of the public schools, and he took a leading interest in building up the schools of that city to their present high standing.
April 27, 1863, he was married, at Colusa, to Miss Mary C. Cook, a native of the same county in which he was born. He is the happy father of four children, one son and three daughters, and enjoys domestic life in his palatial residence on the corner of Washington and Gough Streets, surrounded with the comforts which a refined taste could suggest and ample wealth provide.
“Colusa County” – by Justus H. Rogers – Orland, CA – 1891 – pp 404-405.
Transcribed by Kathy Sedler, August 2004.
© 2004 Kathy Sedler
California Biography Project
San Francisco County
Golden Nugget Library