Jose Maria Echenique, father of Tomas, was born in Maya, Navarre, Spain, where his son also was born. He followed farming all of his life, his death occurring at the home place. His wife, Petra Dendarieta, now deceased, was born there, and was the mother of seven children, all of whom are now living, Tomas being the youngest.
The birth of Tomas Echenique occurred April 19, 1878, at the same place where his father first saw light of day, and there he spent his young days, receiving his educational training in the local school. As he grew up he became interested in accounts of the new world, and in 1897 finally started for America, full of ambition and purpose to succeed in his new efforts. On January 24, 1897, he came to San Francisco, and in less than a week he procured employment with a sheepman at Huron, Fresno county, where he remained for some time, learning all the details of the business. As he was energetic and thrifty, having the future in mind, he saved his earnings, and in 1903 bought a small flock of sheep, which installed him in the sheep business on his own account. The ensuing year brought him good results, and in 1904 he came to East Bakersfield to make his home, ranging his sheep during the winters in Kern county, and in the summers in the Tehachapi mountains. His ranch headquarters are on Poso creek.
On April 4, 1908, Mr. Echenique married one of his countrywomen, Miss Jeanne Etcheverry, born in Aldudes, Basses-Pyrenees, becoming his wife. They are the parents of two children, Marie and Jeanne Mathilda.
History of Kern County, California, with biographical sketches
of the leading men and women of the county who have been
identified with its growth and development from the early days
to the present.
Publisher: Los Angeles, Cal., Historic record company, 1914