A resident of Kern county for the most part since 1887, Joseph Eyraud was born at Ancel, Hautes-Alpes, France, June 22, 1868, and is a son of Franc and Victoria (Ledge) Eyraud, lifelong farmers in France. In a family of eight children, all but two of whom still survive, Joseph was the youngest and he was quite small when his brothers, Yrene and Franc, left the home farm to establish themselves in the new world. Sending back favorable reports from their destination in Kern county, the youngest brother was induced to join them in California November 27, 1887, when he arrived at Sumner (now East Bakersfield). Without delay he found employment with sheepmen in the county. His beginnings in the sheep industry date from 1888, when he bought a few head. The flock increased rapidly and when he sold in 1909 there were thirteen thousand head altogether. They had been raised both for the mutton and the wool. For years the flocks were ranged in Tulare, Fresno, Kern and Inyo counties, their owner thus gaining a most thorough knowledge of this section of the state. He is, indeed, particularly well posted concerning the country, knows the character of the different soils, the prospects for water, the varying climates in mountains and foothills and the opportunities for successful work as a stockman or rancher. After selling his large flock he spent two years in San Francisco and then established a home on his ranch of forty acres, eleven miles south of Bakersfield, between Union avenue and Kern Island, where by means of water from the Kern Island canal he is specializing in alfalfa and grain. His marriage was solemnized in San Francisco and united him with Miss Augustine Bertrand, who was born in Chorges, Hautes-Alpes, and by whom he has a daughter, Augustine. Ever since becoming a voting citizen he has cast his ballot for Republican men and measures at general elections. Besides the fine farm upon which he lives and to the improvement of which his attention is given largely, he owns thirty acres of alfalfa one mile distant, also under the Kern Island canal; this is cared for by a tenant. In addition he owns a number of lots on Humboldt street, East Bakersfield. these being improved with cottages that he rents. When it is remembered that he came to the county without any means and worked for some time as a sheep herder for day wages, his present financial independence indicates energy and industry on his part, and at the same time proves that Kern offers opportunities unsurpassed by any other agricultural county in the state.
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