Moses Knight Chandler

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Moses Knight Chandler was born April 8, 1836, in Landaff, Grafton County, New Hampshire, the only son of Joseph and Roxanna Clark Chandler. He was named after an uncle, Moses Knight, who had married his aunt, Lucy Chandler. His parents had been married for eight years before he was born... he must have been a very pleasant surprise to them.

He married Emma Jane Little on August 27, 1862, in Lisbon, New Hampshire. She was the daughter of Kimball and Elvira Currier Little of Lisbon, the second of their five children, and their only daughter. Moses and Emma Jane were to have four children, two boys, Harry and Fred, born in 1864 and 1865, a daughter, Clara Ellen, born eleven years later in 1876, and a son, Lee, born twenty six years later in 1892. Family tradition has it that Emma retired to her bed feeling poorly at the age of forty nine and after having Lee, was never sick a day for the rest of her life.

A farmer, Moses worked the rocky fields of Landaff, for at least fifteen years. It seems that the family must have moved to Lisbon in the late 1870s, possibly so that the two oldest boys could go to the high school there. After Harry returned to California to regain his health for the second time, Moses packed up his family, including his eighty year old father, Joseph, and made the thirteen day trip to California, to start a new life in a milder climate. Everything that wouldn't fit into five trunks was sold, and after visiting some of Emma's cousins in Medford, New Hampshire, they set off. Clara remembered the trip as a great adventure, recalling a bridge that had just been swept away by the Susquehanna River before the arrival of their engine; and then seeing an Apache Indian wearing a stove pipe hat, a celluoid collar, and a G string at a train station in New Mexico.

Their first impressions of Los Angeles were of the dusty, unpaved streets, that would turn into a "hog wallow" after it rained. They moved first to the Cahuenga Pass area, where they raised Kentucky horses, and then the following year, to the San Fernando Valley to Roscoe, where they bought one hundred and sixty acres at $2.50 an acre. Moses, Fred, and Harry cleared the cactus off the hillside using a maddock and dragging a railroad iron. Fred described trying to get the cactus prickers out of himself for several hours. When Lee sold the ranch in 1949, there were three voting precincts on the property. He hoped that the developers would save as many of the olive trees as they could.

Moses and Emma lived on this farm with its orchards and grapevines until his death on March 26, 1930. They celebrated their sixtieth an niversary surrounded by their children, grandchildren, and great grandchildren. Moses lost his eyesight toward the end of his life. I remember my mother telling me of how he
made his way to the outhouse using a rope to guide himself. He was made of sturdy stock.

Moses and Emma are buried in Evergreen Cemetery in East Los Angeles, next to his father, Joseph, and their daughter-in-law, Magdalena Schlador Chandler, first wife of Harry Chandler.

Moses Knight Chandler and Emma Jane (Little) Chandler Moses Knight Chandler and Emma Jane (Little) Chandler & sons Harry, Lee, and Fred
Moses Knight Chandler and Emma Jane (Little) Chandler Moses Knight Chandler and Emma Jane (Little) Chandler and sons Harry, Lee, and Fred
Chandler Ranch in Roscoe CA Chandler Family in 1890 Emma (Little) & Moses Chandler 60th Wedding Anniversary
Chandler Ranch in Roscoe CA Chandler Family in 1890 Emma (Little) & Moses Chandler 60th Wedding Anniversary