JOSEPH H. LePINE
Joseph H. LePine is one of the most extensive growers and handlers of peaches in the Sacramento Valley and during the seventeen years of his residence here he has achieved an outstanding success in his special field of effort that of canning peaches. Mr. LePine was born at Unadilla, Otsego county, New York, April 12, 1890, a son of William and Ada LePine. His father, who was extensively engaged in cigar manufacturing in the east, is deceased, and his widow now resides at Oneonta, New York.
Joseph H. LePine received his educational training in the public schools of his home community and then took up the study of law under Leland M. Coles, a prominent attorney at Unadilla. In 1913, when twenty-three years of age, Mr. LePine came to California and at once became interested in peach raising. He had had no previous experience in this line of business, his activities in the east having been confined to the manufacture of cigars at Greenfield, Massachusetts, in which he was associated with his father. Regardless of discouraging conditions at times, Mr. LePine has continued in his chosen calling and has been rewarded with distinctive success. In 1915 he sold canning peaches for as little as seven dollars and fifty cents a ton, but refused to be discouraged and has been abundantly rewarded for his persistence and good judgment. After the freeze of 1929 he invested one hundred thousand dollars in canned peaches, on which he eventually netted a good profit. His home place of ten acres was formerly known as the Squire Hamilton place, in addition to which he owns forty acres in Sutter County, three miles west of Yuba City, and leases one hundred acres near Wheatland in Yuba County and eighty acres near Gridley, in Butte County. In 1930 he had two thousand five hundred tons of canning peaches, comprising the major portion of his crop, though he also raises some prunes. Yuba City has won the title of “The World’s Peach Bowl,” because of the quantity and quality of its clingstone canning peaches, a large portion of which Mr. LePine contracts for. It is estimated that one-half of California’s canning peaches are produced in the vicinity of Yuba City.
On April 30, 1912, at Unadilla, New York, Mr. LePine was united in marriage to Miss Ethel King, and they are the parents of three children, Edward, who is a senior in the Yuba City Union high school, John and James. Mr. LePine has taken an active interest in the civic affairs of his community, despite the fact that his own business demands his close attention. In 1930 he was elected a member of the city council, in which position he is rendering creditable service. He belongs to St. John’s Protestant Episcopal Church at Marysville, of which he is a vestryman, and Mrs. LePine belongs to the Women’s Guild. Mr. LePine is a member of the Kiwanis Club in Yuba City. He is the district representative of the California Canning Peach Growers Association, because of which he is in close touch with practically all of the peach growers of the valley. During the late war he served on the exemption board of Sutter County, and was in class four. Early in life Mr. LePine became an expert baseball player and became a professional in the New York State League, playing first base on the Oneonta team, a position for which he was well fitted because of his height, long reach and strength. He is a man of influence in his community and every cause which has for its object the betterment of his city or county receives his endorsement and support.
Transcribed by Gerald Iaquinta.
Source: Wooldridge, J.W.Major History of Sacramento Valley California, Vol. 3, Pages 77-78. Pioneer Historical Publishing Co. Chicago 1931.
© 2010 Gerald Iaquinta.