Prominent Pioneer Families

Alma Patterson

Miss Patterson was the first school teacher when Wildomar school opened in September of 1886.

Alvin Jamieson

The first minister of the United Presbyterian Church in 1887. Alvin and his family are mentioned many times in the local newspapers. He moved his family to Loveland, Colorado in early 1900.

Andrew Defani

Andrew was a blacksmith as indicated on the 1887 Promotional Map. A sad story appeared in 1889 when his mother died resulting with his brother George committing suicide.

Brown Family

Dr. Oscar Brown brought his young family to Wildomar in 1897.

Embree Family

Ezra, Ann and family-Moved to Wildomar in 1886 where Ezra and son, Albert, registered to vote on October 2, 1886. Ezra opened a store in February of 1887, a sketch of which appears on the 1887 Promotional Map. The store sign reads, "E. Embree and Co., Groceries and Hardware, Post office." Another son, William, was awarded the contract to build the Public Library in October of 1887. Ezra lived in Wildomar for 13 years.

Forbes-McGee Family

James, Lucinda and family. The family arrived in Wildomar in 1892. James was born in Scotland and was a farmer. His son Andrew purchased the second cemetery lot in the new cemetery but there are no records to indicate if James was buried there after his death on March 16, 1898. McGee-David married Lucy Forbes (Lucy was the daughter of James and Lucinda Forbes). David was a Civil War Veteran who lived in Wildomar by 1896. David served on the committee to move the cemetery and purchased lot Number 8. By 1900 the McGee's had moved away.

Hampton-Hirst Family

Isaac Hampton was an early pioneer. He moved his family from Kansas to Wildomar by the summer of 1887. Isaac was a liveryman. His second wife was Elizabeth Hirst, daughter of James and Anna. James Hirst came to Wildomar in September of 1885. James was a beekeeper, real estate salesman and a school trustee. The Hirst name appears on two buildings on the 1887 Promotional Map.

Henry Lillie

According to the Wildomar pamphlet produced by William Collier and Margaret C. Graham in 1892, page 3, "The first purchaser of land was Henry Lillie. He is also the latest buyer in this locality, having recently added twenty acres to his original purchase, paid for out of his crop of deciduous fruit that present season."

Iva Keegan

Taught at Wildomar Elementary School for over 20 years and kept a list of teachers and other history items.

Madison Chaney

Madison Chaney and his wife Jane were miners in the area when William Collier made his first trip to the area. Madison was a very colorful character and lived in Wildomar (Chaney Hill) near the Murrieta border for many years.

Mary Simmons

Mary Simmons was the first girl born in Wildomar. She grew up to marry Dean Fletcher. Mary was born in October 8, 1890 and died in 1974. She is buried in Wildomar Cemetery along with her mother and uncle William Wilkinson, who lived to be almost 102.

Mary Soules

Mary was the mother of Fanny Soules Taylor. Mary, a widow, followed Fanny to California with her two sons from Michigan in 1908. Mary lived on Central Street with her sons Neil and Roy. For many years Mary ran a boarding house and also helped to care for the ill. Mary was known for her cooking abilities. Mary is buried in Wildomar Cemetery.

Matthews Family

Abram and Mary Matthews served for the Union during the Civil War. Residents of Wildomar in 1888, Abram served as postmaster starting in 1902 and also for ten years as the station agent for the Santa Fe Railroad. Abram also was in charge of the cemetery for a period. There were numerous items in the local newspapers about the Matthews. Abram and Mary are buried in Evergreen Cemetery in Riverside.

Nichols Joseph

Joseph was the train agent who committed suicide in 1889. His grave wasn't moved to the current cemetery until 1979.

Pearson Family

David and Anna moved their family to Wildomar in 1885 from Cedar County, Iowa. The family is mentioned many times in the local newspapers. One son, George (he was the second boy born in Wildomar), became the first county surveyor in 1893. By 1895 the family had moved to Los Angeles - except for George. In 1900 George was living in Riverside and working as a civil engineer for the county. From 1910 - 1930 he was living in Los Angeles County and still employed as a civil engineer. (Note: There is a notation on the 1887 Promotional Map, "Presented by Alida Pearson, Resident of Wildomar, 1886-1894. Alida was the daughter of George and Anna.)

Taylor Family

Ben and Fanny Taylor - Ben moved to Wildomar about 1906 as a widower with a young daughter to farm 3,000 acres for William Collier. Fanny Soules came to teach school in the fall of 1906. They married in 1907 and had three children. Ben and Fanny lived the rest of their lives in Wildomar. They are buried in Wildomar Cemetery along with two of their children (Frank and Ellen Hazard) and Fanny's mother (Mary Soules).

Torbett Family

William and family moved to Wildomar from Illinois. Early in 1894 they were growing apricots and strawberries. William passed away in 1917 and is buried in Wildomar Cemetery. His sons Carl and Harry continued to live here as listed on the 1930 census.

Turner Family

Wyman, Elizabeth and Dave ran the post office for 38 years (both Wyman and Betty were postmasters). Betty was also on the School and Cemetery boards and the land for fire station Number 61 was donated by Dave Turner in memory of his father Wyman.

Wibel Family

John, Mary and Henry -The Wibel family lived in Wildomar by 1890. Henry, the son of John and Mary, was the chairman of the committee to move the cemetery to its present location. Henry purchased lot Number 1 and his father, John, was most likely the first person buried at the new location. Mary was also buried there in 1912.

Wilks Family

Richard, Fannie and family immigrated from England with four children and lived in Michigan and Kansas before coming to Wildomar by 1895. The family was mentioned often over the years in the local newspapers. Tragedy struck when one of the sons, Valentine, was killed in a hunting accident. The family had a long history of being a prominent pioneer family and son Thomas became known as the "hay king" of the valley. A son of Thomas, Arthur, was caretaker at the cemetery and took care of the trees planted in 1927 which are still standing on Palomar. All six of the original family members are buried in Wildomar Cemetery.