Sunday, May 1, 2016

Jacob Frederick Ast

Last week I took a Time Out to share some photos that a cousin of my husband had shared with us.  Since he has since shared even more, I need to continue with this theme.  And what better way to start than with the oldest of the children of Eberhard and Anna (Strauss) Ast, Jacob Frederick Ast.

Ast Jacob Frederick c 1885

Jacob was born 22 Aug 1878 in New York.  Sometime between 1880-1884, Jacob moved with his parents to California and in about 1901, he and Pauline Perez became husband and wife.

Ast Jacob 'Fred' _Pauline Perez Wedding cropped

Jacob Frederick Ast and Pauline Perez, abt. 1901
Jacob and Pauline had one child, Frederick W. (b. 1902) and in 1910 the family was living on Folsom Street in San Francisco.  But by 1920, Jacob and Pauline were no longer together and Jacob was married to Josephine McLaughlin.  I’m fairly certain that the marriage ended in divorce since it appears that Pauline also later remarried to Charles Lester.

It seems that Jacob worked as both a Veterinarian and a Butcher and for the most part, settled in San Mateo.  He and Josephine had two children, Rita (b. 1918) and Joseph (b. 1924).

I’d heard the story about Jacob being killed in 1958 as he walked across the street but it wasn’t until I found his obituary in the 29 Jan 1958 edition of The Times (San Mateo, California) that I learned the full story.  Doesn’t sound like he was hit by a drunk driver as I’d heard from the family 20 or so years after the accident occurred.

Dr. Jacob Frederick Ast, 79 year old retired San Mateo County veterinarian and resident of 124 Tenth Avenue, San Mateo, was instantly killed while crossing Capital Avenue in Woodland last night.

He had been attending a veterinarians’ convention and was on his way back to his motel following a banquet across the street.

Highway patrolmen said he was hit by a car driven by Lawrence B. White, 50, of Long Beach, executive secretary of the California School Boards association.

Officers Roy Jones and Robert Moyer said Dr. Ast was wearing all dark clothing and was difficult to see in the darkness.  No citations were issued.

Well known in this area for many years, Dr. Ast had been in practice with Dr. James D. Tuohig of Menlo Park.

A native of New York City, Dr. Ast lived in California for 76 years and in San Mateo city for 30 years.  During the past 12 years he was a member of the San Francisco county board of health.

He was a life member of the California Veterinary Medical association and a member of the Bay Counties Veterinary Medical association.

He was a life member of Occicental Lodge No. 22, F.& A.M. of San Francisco.

In addition Dr. Ast at one time was a meat inspector and held membership in Local 115, San Francisco Butchers’ union.

He is survived by his wife, Josephine, of San Mateo, and the following children:  Mrs. Rita Ast Thomen of Belmont, Joseph F. Ast of San Lorenzo and Frederick William Ast of Kelseyville, Calif.

He was a brother of William Ast of Williams, Calif., Mrs. Emily Williams of Concord, Herman P. Ast of Mountain View, and Miss Bertha Ast of San Francisco.  Four grandchildren also survive.

Funeral services will be held from Sneider and Sullivan chapel at 2 p.m. on Friday.

Jacob is buried with Josephine, who died in 1961, at St. John’s Cemetery in San Mateo.

More on the Asts in later posts. 


  1. What beautiful photos. I didn't read anything in the obituary to indicate the driver was not drunk. Whether he was or not, the dark night didn't help.

    I can't help it - I find being a veterinarian AND a butcher to be amusing.

    1. I guess because no citations were issued I'm assuming the driver was not drunk. Thanks for pointing out the veterinarian and butcher angle - I didn't even think about that :-)

  2. What a beautiful wedding picture. You sure hit the photo jackpot! What a sad story though and like Wendy, the vet and butcher thing made me giggle.

    1. It's wonderful when photos seem to drop from the sky.

    2. But they do drop from the sky, don't they? Isn't that where the Internet is?? =)

  3. Such a great wedding photo---sad to think the marriage didn't last. And I agree---the driver might have been drunk but not prosecuted. He was a local official, and back then there was not as much concern about drunk driving. Also, Jacob might have been a bit tipsy after attending the convention...