Author: John Outcalt (1925)
ELBRIDGE NELSON RECTOR
A man who stands high in the esteem of his associates as a leader in the profession of the law in the San Joaquin Valley, Elbridge Nelson Rector has the distinction of being a native son, born at Snelling, Merced County, January 6, 1865, the son of the late Elbridge Gerry Rector, whose biography appears on another page of this history. Elbridge Nelson Rector attended the local district school and then entered the Pacific Methodist College at Santa Rosa, and was graduated in 1889 with the A. B. degree. He was fitting himself for the law and next entered Hastings College of Law, a branch of the University of California, where he spent one year. He then began teaching school at Atwater, continuing for two years, to enable him to complete his law course, which in due time he did, graduating from Hastings College of Law in 1895 with the degree of LL.B. After his graduation he entered upon the practice of his profession in San Francisco, and the following year returned to his home county and began his professional work in Merced, a work which was to lead to high honors with the passing of the years. In 1900 he was elected, at a special election, to fill the high position of superior judge, which had been vacated by J. K. Law. He had been nominated and elected under the banner of the Democratic party; but in 1902 there was no Republican nominee for the post, and Judge Rector succeeded himself and is still the incumbent in that high office. His high qualities of mind and his clear understanding of the law have made his years in office very satisfactory to the citizens of Merced County.
The marriage of Elbridge Nelson Rector united him with Miss Lillian Mae Nicholls, a native daughter of California, born in Placerville, and they have three children: Elbridge S., a high-school student; and Geraldine and Carolyn, pupils in the Merced Grammar School. Judge Rector is a member of the Methodist
Episcopal Church, South, in which he has been a trustee for many years. He is a member of the State Bar Association, the Chamber of Commerce, Lions' Club, Union League Club, and the Commonwealth Club of California, and a life member of the Luther Burbank Society. Fraternally, he is a member of the Moose and Native Sons. He takes a live interest in all clean sports, having been a sprinter in his college days, and is fond of out-of-door life. He is counted one of the most public spirited men of Merced County. The Judge has written several very creditable descriptive articles on famous California scenery, Lake Tahoe, Yosemite and the High Sierras.