The rapidity with which new towns and subdivisions have been developed in California during the past ten or fifteen years is little short of miraculous, and great credit is due the men who have been on the ground from the beginning, literally working like beavers in the activity attendant upon the opening of new lands, and making them ready for the influx of new settlers. When Planada, in Merced County, was first opened by the Los Angeles Investment Company, in 1912, they were looking about for a man to take charge of all field operations in the opening and laying out of the district, and their choice settled upon W. B. Pugh, and he was the man who was on the ground when the "first gun was fired." In fact he "fired" it, superin­tending all street grading and other development work in the new colony, and he has remained steadily in charge and is still the care­taker for all their interests there today, in the interval seeing all the changes that the short length of time has made, and these have been many, for it is today one of the most prosperous districts in the San Joaquin Valley.


A native of Hancock County, W. Va., Mr. Pugh was born April 10, 1862, the second of nine children in the family of Andrew C. and Matilda (Pugh) Pugh, of that State. The mother has passed on, her death occurring at Chester, W. Va., in January, 1924, but Andrew C. Pugh is still living, and maintains an active interest in affairs at the good age of ninety years. Educated in the public schools of his native county, W. B. Pugh was reared as a farmer's son, and left home when nineteen years old to take a job as appren­tice to the blacksmith trade, at Hookstown, Pa. He learned the trade most thoroughly and at the end of eighteen months became his em­ployer's successor to the shop; he later sold out, to enter sales work for the International Harvester Company, and was on the road for many years.


In 1908 Mr. Pugh came West and established a shop, working at his trade once more, first at Santa Monica, Cal., and later moved to Hollywood, until the time when he came to Planada for the Los Angeles Investment Company. He has since made his home there; and he is now owner of one of Planada's fine homes, and also of desirable real estate in the town, which he has seen grow from "the ground up," and his every effort has been to help the progress, thereby adding one more prosperous community to the State, where nothing but bare land had been before.


The marriage of Mr. Pugh, in Hancock County, W. Va., in 1885, united him with Ida Boody, a native of East Liverpool, Ohio, and one son has been born to them, Andrew, an ex-service man of the World War, an expert machinist and tractor man, and now an employee of the Yosemite Valley Railroad Company. Mr. Pugh be­longs to the Planada-Tuttle Farm Bureau, and is a real "booster" for Merced County, for he has seen what can be accomplished, and has a very real foundation for his faith in this section of our won­derful State.


 History of Merced County California With a Biographical Review OF The Leading Men and Woman of the County Who Have Been Identified with Its Growth and Development from Early Days to the Present

Author: John Outcalt (1925)

W. B. Pugh, page: 740


Contributed by: Carol lackey