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Santa Cruz County History - People
Old Soldiers: Santa Cruz County Civil War Veterans
by Robert L. Nelson
LINSCOTT, JAMES A (1846-1913)
Records of Members of the Grand Army of the Republic, William H. Ward
James A. Linscott was born in Jefferson, Lincoln County ME, December 20, 1845 has been a lumberman and is at present a grain speculator. Enlisted in the 2d Maine Cavalry December 3, 1863, and served as a private; was honorably discharged in December 1865. Comrade Linscott is a member of R.L. McCook Post, GAR of Watsonville where he resides.
Santa Cruz Sentinel (September 9, 1913)
Ex-Supervisor Linscott Dies at Watsonville
Prominent Man of this County Seized With heart Trouble, Dies Monday
James A. Linscott, one of the most prominent men of this county, the cousin of City Supt. of Schools, J.W. Linscott of this city, died at his home in Watsonville at 4 o'clock Monday afternoon, after lapsing into unconsciousness on Sunday. Robust in every sense of the word and apparently in good health, Mr. Linscott was stricken with heart failure last Thursday and his condition gradually became worse.
The deceased served this county for many a term as supervisor representing the Pajaro district and he gained distinction all over the state as one of the best road builders anywhere. He was a shrewd politician and an keen business man. Harrison's History of Santa Cruz County, published in 1892, contains the following autobiographical sketch of the deceased:
The subject of this sketch is a native of Lincoln county, Maine and was born December 20 1846. He was reared a farmer, and attended public schools in his native place until he was fifteen years old. At that time he went to work for the United States government, and helped to build Fort Popham, at the mouth of the Kennebec River. At the age of eighteen he enlisted in the Second Maine Cavalry, U.S.A. for service in the civil war. A number of his relatives also wore the blue during the internecine struggle, and some of them spilled their blood for the flag. James served three years, from December 3, 1863. On that day his regiment sailed from Portland Maine, on the ship Northhampton, for New Orleans. From New Orleans they went to Florida, and were for some time engaged in raids in that state. After leaving Florida they were ordered to Alabama, thence to Mississippi, and thence again to Florida where the close of the war found them.
Mr. Linscott himself carried the order that took the army from Pensacola, Florida, to the attack on Mobile. His army life was full of thrilling experience and exciting adventures, but, as he says, not entirely without its allowance of fun. He was the youngest member of his company, and seems to have been looked upon as the mischief maker, whether or not he deserved the title.
After receiving his discharge from the army, Linscott returned home and started to school again. The next year he made his first trip to California, coming by way of Central America. He settled in Santa Cruz County and engaged in the lumber business. After two years of hard work at this occupation he made up his mind that he was able to marry, and so he returned to the East to get the girl he had 'left behind' him. Her name was Dora J. Dowell, and she lived at Cambridgeport, near Boston.
In the spring of 1869 Mr. Linscott returned to California, bringing his wife with him. He came again to Santa Cruz County, and resumed the lumber business. His second location was at Grover and Co. mills, near Soquel. In the fall of 1872 he removed to Watsonville, but still followed the same trade. In 1884 he abandoned the calling at which he got his first start and went to farming and stock raising in the Pajaro valley. These occupations have claimed his attention ever since.
It was Mr. Linscott who built and established the Eureka sawmill, also the Clipper mill and the new Eureka shingle Mill. It was he who cut out most of the lumber around Corralitos and opened up that country.
Mr. and Mrs. Linscott have one daughter Carrie.
Mr. Linscott is Republican in politics and takes considerable interest in political affairs. In 1890 he was tendered the nomination for county supervisor from his district, and was elected. His course as a public officer is worth of much eulogium. A number of important enterprises stand as monuments to his energy and public spirit.
Santa Cruz Sentinel (September 12, 1913)
Impressive Funeral of J.A. Linscott
The Thursday Watsonville Register says:
All business was suspended in the city between the hours of 2 and 3 o’clock yesterday while hosts of friends of the late James A. Linscott gathered to pay their last respects to his memory. The family home as well as the porch and lawn were filled with sorrowing friends.
The short but impressive episcopal funeral service was performed while those present gathered about the casket arranged in the center of the reception hall. Rev. C.L. Thackeray, rector of the Episcopal Church assisted by H.C. Wycoff, Albert Johnston, and L.D. O’Neal, performed the ceremony. District Attorney Ben K Knight delivered a eulogy, paying a fitting tribute to the sterling worth and ability of the deceased. The members of Watsonville lodge of Elks and the local camp G.A.R., of which he was a member, attended in bodies.
The pallbearers were D.L. Sutherlund, Mr. Sullivan, E.J. Baker, and Geo. Wilson, Will Espindola and Arthur Thurman, all residents of the Linscott home. The honorary pallbearers were Exalted Ruler A.W. Cox, J.E. Gardner, T.J. Horgan and OD Stoesser, representing the Elks lodge, apple annual association and chamber of commerce, and F.A. Kilburn all of Watsonville; and Ralph Miller of Santa Cruz who served on the board of supervisors.
At 9:25 this morning the body was shipped to Cypress Lawn Cemetery for cremation, after which the ashes will be scattered to the four winds from a ferryboat on San Francisco bay.
Among those in attendance from Santa Cruz at the funeral yesterday were Supervisors Ralph Mattison, Harvey Esty and Ball, District Attorney Ben K. Knight, William H. Bias, Frank Helms, Willett Ware and F.O. Hihn.
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