Santa Cruz County History - People

Old Soldiers: Santa Cruz County Civil War Veterans
by Robert L. Nelson

NELSON, JOHN C (1838-1918)

Santa Cruz Great Register (1882)

Headstone of John C Nelson
John C Nelson
Felton Cemetery

John Christian Nelson- Age 44- a Native of Denmark- Occupation farmer- living in Scotts Valley- was naturalized Dec 12, 1870 in Santa Cruz- and registered July 26, 1892.

Santa Cruz Sentinel (September15, 1886)

A Runaway

About 11 o’clock Tuesday morning when in front of J. Constine’s grocery, two horses driven by John C. Nelson became frightened by the falling of a clevis, which caused the neck yoke to pull off and let the tongue down. The horses started at a lively rate of speed down Pacific avenue with the tongue dragging along the ground. The driver and a Portuguese who accompanied him kept their seats until they were thrown out in front of Sickels grocery. Mr. Nelson carried the lines with him as he fell, which became entangled in the wheel and drew the horses around to where the two men were lying. The horses were brought to a standstill by L.A. Daniels, who grabbed them by the bit and pulled them away from the men, thus preventing further injury. The Portuguese jumped up uninjured and immediately proceeded down the avenue, while Nelson was picked up by C. S. Hohmann, S.F. Mikel and E. Alzina and carried into Fay’s drug store, where Dr. Morgan examined the wounds and found a fractured rib on the right side and a severe cut on the forehead. The wounds were dressed and the unfortunate man conveyed to his home in Scott’s Valley.

Notes from Marian Pokrioff

John Christian Nelson was born in August 1835 in Denmark. He immigrated to the U.S. in 1860 [His Civil War tombstone within the Felton Cemetery indicates that he was in the U.S. Navy during the Civil War] and arrived in Santa Cruz in 1868.

He was married to a Mary Crandell, a Native of Vermont who was born Nov 1838 and died on July 16, 1913 and was buried on the family farm. John Christian Nelson was joined here by a nephew Chris Nelson who died in 1917. John Nelson farmed near Lockhart Gulch Road in Scotts Valley and the road to his farm has subsequently been named Nelson Road. John C. Nelson died on Nov 5, 1918 and is buried in the Felton cemetery.

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