Alvin Bacon Preston 1829-1890


It is possible that Preston Falls was named after A. B. Preston, a pioneer in Sonora during the Gold Rush. He certainly was a prominent figure in the area at the time. However, I have not uncovered any positive connection between Mr. Preston and Preston Falls. The story of A. B. Preston's life and family makes for interesting reading in any case.

I have been able to add a considerable amount of detail about A. B. Preston to that which I found compiled in the existing historical records and geneologies. I first uncovered a reference to A. B. Preston in the Bancroft Library at UC Berkeley. His sketchy biography was listed in "The History of Tuolumne County, 1882" by XXXXXXXXX. From this info I was able to locate additional information in the records of the Tuolumne County Historical Society in Sonora, CA.

These records indicated that Preston had one son and two daughters that lived past infancy, and perhaps one or more that died as infants. They also indicated that his son died married, but childless, in 1917 in an automobile wreck near Jamestown, CA. A. B. Preston was said to be buried in the Masonic Cemetary in Jamestown. The record was unclear and conflicting, and there was some indication either the father or the son was buried in the Masonic Cemetary in Sonora, CA.

An exhaustive search of the Masonic Cemetary in Jamestown, CA turned up no trace of the Preston name. The cemetary is in a sad state of repair however, and shows signs of significant erosion over its lifetime. A similar search of the Masonic Cemetary in Sonora, CA revealed a major tombstone and what appears to be the burial plot for most if not all of the family. The patriarch's tombstone reveals that there were three children who died in infancy. It also had been modified to add the married surname of one of the daughters. The tombstone is but one piece of an often confusing array of birthdates for the two daughters.

I have contructed my version of the A. B. Preston Geneology from many sources. These include the documents held by the TCHS, Superior Court probate documents for many of the family members, newspaper articles, census records, etc. The family appears to have sprung up and disappeared in only two generations, with tragedy a frequent visitor.

This page is under construction. When finished it will describe my work in finding the origin of the naming of Preston Falls on the Tuolumne River.