An O'Brienite in California
An idle browse led me to this site from which the above photo is taken - the grave is that of one of the English O'Brienities, John Days. He emigrated to the US in his twenties and became a politician of some note in California. He came from Hull and is buried close to - not the North Sea, but the Pacific Ocean.
Here's what the site has to say:
John M. Days was born in Hull, Yorkshire, England, the son of a shoe maker. His father died when John was young, and the family ended up in England's workhouses for the poor.
John had been skilled as a tailor by trade. He further educated himself and became active in labor and politics during his early years in England, where he also became a follower of James "Bronterre" O'Brien.
In 1854, he sailed to America. He lived for a brief time in Missouri and Oregon before settling in Grass Valley, California.
While living in Grass Valley, John worked as a tailor, was a school teacher for a short time, helped establish a town library, and practiced politics. He later became a member of the California State Assembly 21st District (Nevada Co), 1867-69, 1871-73; delegate to Republican National Convention from California, 1868; Clerk in Superior Court (S.F.) circa 1880; elected CA State District Senator, 13th District (Santa Clara), 1885; Attorney-at-Law, and Deputy County Clerk 1889-1891. John was a political and personal acquaintance of Henry George, and is mentioned in the book, "The Life of Henry George".
It was in Grass Valley that he forged his most lasting relationship - that with Aaron Clark and his family. From 1870 until his death in 1901, John lived with the Clark family in Grass Valley and in San Francisco. 8 Months after Aaron's death in 1893, John and Aaron's widow, Martha, married and moved to Summerland, Santa Barbara, CA.
Lincoln Clark, son of Aaron and Martha Clark, who later became John's step-son, was shipwrecked on Pitcairn Island for 6 months in 1881-82. He later returned to Pitcairn in 1909 with his son, Roy Palmer Clark, where they both remained until the end of their lives. John had been a part of the Clark family since the time Lincoln was born.
After John's death Martha wed Amariah "Homer" Buelle Wheelock.
It's is remarkable that O'Brien has a connection of sorts with Pitcairn, one of the world's smallest and most remote human settlements. There's quite a few Clarks on Pitcairn!
John Days made a visit to London in 1868, by which time he was already a member of the California State Assembly. This prompted the most remarkable of the O'Brienite ventures, the attempt to establish a cooperative colony in Kansas. It didn't work, but about 200 would-be colonists made the journey out to the US.
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