Notes for “W.A. Merralls: Inventor and Entrepreneur of Sunnyside”

Linked references for post “W.A. Merralls: Inventor and Entrepreneur of Sunnyside”  

  1. See .
  2. The original document is here:
  3. Voter records in 1892, 1894, and 1896 state that William Merralls was 5’ 8 ½ ” (or 10” in one record), had black hair, hazel (or brown) eyes, and a scar on his right temple. In lieu of any portraits, here are two photos of one of W.A. Merralls’ English cousins in Kent, William Sutton Merralls, whose lifespan nearly matches W.A. Merralls. Photo:
  4. Real estate notices, SF Chronicle, 5 March 1897, p.14.
  5. “Damage Suits Filed,” SF Chronicle, 10 Dec 1902, p.8.
  6. 1915 Sanborn maps through SF Public Library (sign in with library card):
  7. For a full list of the list of companies and organizations that W.A. Merralls owned or was associated with see this page .
  8. In August 1900 the Hall was still not paid off, and there was a social event held there to raise funds for it. See SF Chronicle, 5 Aug 1900, p.20.
  9. Contemporary news items (re a school for the neighborhood) suggest there were only about 100-150 children in Sunnyside at this time.
  10. “Sunnyside Children Entertained,” SF Call, 25 Dec 1899, p.6; “Will Work for McKinley,” SF Chronicle, 6 Oct 1900, p.14.
  11. “Sunnyside Residents Object to Old Cars,” SF Call, 16 Jan 1903, p.4.
  12. After this Hall closed, there were several meeting places. In June 1909 the Sunnyside Improvement Club met at 211 Sunnyside Ave (now 219 Monterey); in 1910 it met at the house of John Barrett, 337 Hearst (now 359); in 1911 at 341 Hearst (now 367), in 1912 at 410 Foerster; and finally settling in about 1913 to meet for many years in the auditorium of the new Sunnyside Schoolhouse on Foerster and Hearst (more on the building here ).
  13. Some of the details about Merralls’ early life come from the family tree on for “Hendrick Wilner and Descendants,” which I believe to have been solidly researched. Free trial membership is available on this genealogy research website.
  14. US Census data for Leadville, Colorado. WA Merralls lists occupation as “Mines,” Lizzie states “keeping house.” The 1900 census states they had been married twenty years.
  15. Topeka Daily Capital, 6 Jan 1885, p.8.
  16. See
  17. See
  18. Topeka Daily Capital, 17 December 1889, p.5.
  19. E.g., Mention of “W. A. Merralls, prominent mining man of Riverside,” in San Bernardino Daily Courier, 27 July 1890, p.3. In February 1890 he still lived in Kansas City, when filed a patent that states as much:
  20. Notes about new incorporations, Sacramento Record Union, 17 July 1890, p.3.
  21. A patent William files for 16 February 1893 states he resides in San Francisco:
  22. There is a photo at the SF History Center of First Street as metal manufacturing center, c.1865 and 1927:
  23. This exciting event took place 7 Jan 1911. Read about it in this issue of the SF Call (especially p.30).  
  24. W.A. Merralls named among many as a timer for major aviation meet to take place at new air field near Tanforan, San Mateo County, in Jan 1911. See SF Call, 29 Dec 1910, p.3.
  25. See this reference by searching this string in quotes on : “63299 merrall’s safety aeroplane” [sic].
  26. Both William and Lizzie appear on a list of stockholders of the Wurmser-Merralls Placer Mining Company who owe delinquent assessment. E.g., LA Herald, 14 May 1892, p.7.
  27. “Charges Hobson with Perjury,” SF Chronicle, 31 Dec 1904, p.11.
  28. See SF Call, 28 June 1904, p.9; SF Chronicle, same date, p.16; also SF Call, 28 Jan 1905, p.4.
  29. “Alleges Infringement of Stamp Mill Rights: W.A. Merrals [sic] Asks Sweeping Injunction,” LA Herald, 9 Jun 1906, p.14.
  30. “Court Decides No Infringement of Patent,” LA Herald, 12 Feb 1908, p.12.
  31. 31 “Was Not Ideal,” SF Call, 3 Nov 1894, p.3. Read the whole article here (sign in with SF Public Library card):  
  32. Notes in the society pages about their stays at various watering holes of the rich coincide with his business dealings, such as when William and Lizzie go to Vichy Springs near Clear Lake (SF Call, 19 June 1904, p.38) , while William is involved with a mining venture at the Quinby Creek site in Trinity County to the north of this location (Engineering and Mining Journal, Vol.77, p.1020, 23 June 1904).
  33. This included what appears to be the first property they bought, in Salt Lake City UT, which Lizzie did not sell until 1890 for $1500 ($40K now), according to Salt Lake City Herald, 11 Jul 1890, p.8. This is the only evidence they were ever in Utah, perhaps between the 1880 census when they are in Colorado, and the first mention of William in Kansas City in 1885.
  34. Thomas Malim’s document wrongly states Temperance is a “nurse from Australia.”
  35. Indicated both by business dealings and a note in the society page of the SF Call (2 Mar 1913, p.50) that Mrs Merralls had recently returned from 18 month tour of eastern cities.
  36. See .
  37. 37 This is documented in the family tree for Merralls. Free trial subscription available
  38. New York Times, 24 April 1913, p.12.
  39. Domestic Engineering, Vol.67, No.1, p.18. Or enter “merralls air steam gas engine” without quotes in .
  40. See real estate listings, SF Chronicle, 6 Mar 1913, p.17.
  41. See The Pacific Reporter, 1920, Vol. 186, p. 778, “Merralls v Southern Pac. Co. (SF 8333)” .
  42. “Accident: Engineer Blameless,” Oakland Tribune, 10 Sep 1914, p.14.
  43. “Widow Sues for Death,” Oakland Tribune, 2 Sep 1915, p.12.
  44. See The Pacific Reporter, 1920, Vol. 186, p. 778, “Merralls v Southern Pac. Co. (SF 8333)” .
  45. See SF Directory, 1916. .
  46. Real estate listing, SF Chronicle, 29 Nov 1914, p58. Sold to Alexander Woods, lot 19, block 41, Sunnyside.
  47. Santa Cruz Evening News, 12 May 1917, p.7.
  48. Find these by searching “Charles N. Merralls” at .
  49. Find it on this page in the Chronicle under “Real Estate Transfers” (sign in with SFPL library card):