Andrew J. Moon (December, 1800 - February 26, 1880) was one of the founders of Oakland.
Ah, the Moon-man … Oakland’s mystery founder, Andrew J. Moon.
Well, the guy might as well have been from the moon: next to him, Horace Carpentier and Edson Adams are practically household names. This is not just one sleep-deprived editor’s opinion, either: he seemed to fade into the historical background almost immediately after his role in Oakland’s incorporation. Here’s a summary of what is currently known of him:
- born December, 1800; some sources say Binghamton, NY
- met other future Oakland founders on the sailing ship while coming around the horn
- >20 years older than HWC & EA; may have facilitated dealings with authorities/lent their caper an air of legitimacy
- along with the others, claimed 4×13 block portion of original Oakland (thought to be the section closest to the lake)
- served on the town of Oakland’s first board of trustees
- possible 4th partner Alfred Burrell's daughter says Moon bailed for Hawaii shortly afterward
- died c. 18791
- the book History of the San Francisco Bay Region (Vol. II) has a profile on him, available at the OHR. It also includes the fact that in 1854, Major Moon married Miss Mary Agnes Willis, from a family with "many fine musicians" including Richard Willis, bandmaster at West Point. They had 3 children: Milton Willis Moon, Marynia (or Marynea) E. Moon (who married Capt. Williiam E. Hall), and Marie Edna Hall (who married D. S. Hallock of San Rafael; one daughter, Margaret.)
Note: while this article may at first seem frivolous (it was written lightheartedly) … it is likely the most information-dense collection of facts on its subject anywhere on the internet. (You’re welcome to check!) ANOTHER OAKLANDWIKI EXCLUSIVE … you read it here first, folks! (There is much more information about Moon in “Oakland, The Story of a City,” by Beth Bagwell [Presidió Press 1982]. It is still the authoritative history of the city, and Oakland Heritage Alliance brought out a second edition with a chapter on Oakland’s history since the book was first published.
Links and References
- Oakland's Tin Gods San Francisco Call July 3, 1892
- The Beginnings of Oakland, AUC by Peter T. Conmy, 1961