Glendale, California Biographies

Dr. Harry B. Crocker

        Dr. Harry B. Crocker is a native son and was born in San Francisco, February 18, 1877, a son of Henry and Janet (McInnes) Crocker. His father was born in Louisiana, and his mother in Massachusetts. His grandfather, Henry Crocker, was a planter in Louisiana before the Civil War, and was killed while serving in the commissary department of the Confederate Army. His property was all confiscated and his wife died of grief shortly thereafter.

        Henry Crocker, the father of Dr. Crocker, came to California in 1866, and for many years was a reported on the Dramatic Chronicle (now the San Francisco Chronicle). He went to the Fraser River Gold Fields in British Columbia as representative of the Overland Monthly. Returning to San Francisco, he became identified with banking as an appraiser for the Clay Street Bank, and as such was sent to Sonoma county where he bought land before the railroad was built. Dr. Crocker was reared on the ranch in Sonoma County. He graduated from Healdsburg High School in 1894, and then attended Stanford University for three years, after which he graduated from California Medical College in 1900. While in Medical College he edited and published the California Medical Journal. After graduation he taught and lectured on Ophthalmology at the Medical College for three years. Returning to Sonoma County he sold the ranch the next year and built the Crocker Sanatorium at Healdsburg, which he operated until the earthquake of 1906. Becoming surgeon for the Eldorado Lumber Company at Placerville, he remained with that company for one year before coming to Los Angeles, where he practiced medicine and surgery for a time, then became surgeon for mining companies in New Mexico and for Francisco Villa in Old Mexico. This work gave him an opportunity to learn a great deal of Spanish and, in consequence thereof, he became valuable to the Department of Justice in securing information concerning pro-Germans and filibustering enterprises along the border. Later he was stationed at the Lankershim Hotel in Los Angeles, and in such capacity did splendid service for his country.

        In 1911, Dr. Crocker bought thirty-two acres of land from Francisco Verdugo, on North Verdugo Road, where he has since resided. He was one of the first to see the possibilities of the Verdugo Canyon and bought and developed his land there, in spite of the ridicule of many friends. He has seen the Canyon develop from a barren waste to one of the most desirable residential sections in Southern California. He has, in the interim, sold several building lots on which substantial homes have been built. The balance is platted and on the market, excepting a homesite which he reserved for himself, and on which he is now building a modern residence.

        Dr. Crocker married Inez Williams, at San Francisco, December 24, 1902. She is a native of Kentucky, and a daughter of Captain C. C. Williams of Chester, Illinois, a pioneer steamboat captain on the Mississippi River and one of the owners of the Anchor Line. They have one daughter, Marcia, age thirteen. Dr. Crocker is a Master Mason and his wife a member of the Eastern Star.

From History of Glendale and Vicinity by John Calvin Sherer. The Glendale Publishing Company, c. 1922 F. M. Broadbooks and J. C. Sherer. Pg. 433- 435. Photograph of Harry B. Crocker and family Pg. 433.