Andrew Moon
from The Beginnings of Oakland, AUC 2
courtesy the Oakland History Room

Andrew J. Moon (December, 1800 - February 26, 1880) was one of the founders of Oakland.

Ah, the Moon-man … Oakland’s mystery founder, Andrew J. Moon.

Well, the guy might as well have been from the moon: next to him, Horace Carpentier and Edson Adams are practically household names. This is not just one sleep-deprived editor’s opinion, either: he seemed to fade into the historical background almost immediately after his role in Oakland’s incorporation. Here’s a summary of what is currently known of him:

  • born December, 1800; some sources say Binghamton, NY
  • met other future Oakland founders on the sailing ship while coming around the horn
  • >20 years older than HWC & EA; may have facilitated dealings with authorities/lent their caper an air of legitimacy
  • along with the others, claimed 4×13 block portion of original Oakland (thought to be the section closest to the lake)
  • served on the town of Oakland’s first board of trustees
  • possible 4th partner Alfred Burrell's daughter says Moon bailed for Hawaii shortly afterward
  • died c. 18791
  • the book History of the San Francisco Bay Region (Vol. II) has a profile on him, available at the OHR. It also includes the fact that in 1854, Major Moon married Miss Mary Agnes Willis, from a family with "many fine musicians" including Richard Willis, bandmaster at West Point. They had 3 children: Milton Willis Moon, Marynia (or MaryneaE. Moon (who married Capt. Williiam E. Hall), and Marie Edna Hall (who married D. S. Hallock of San Rafael; one daughter, Margaret.)

Note: while this article may at first seem frivolous (it was written lightheartedly) … it is likely the most information-dense collection of facts on its subject anywhere on the internet. (You’re welcome to check!) ANOTHER OAKLANDWIKI EXCLUSIVE … you read it here first, folks! (There is much more information about Moon in “Oakland, The Story of a City,” by Beth Bagwell [Presidió Press 1982]. It is still the authoritative history of the city, and Oakland Heritage Alliance brought out a second edition with a chapter on Oakland’s history since the book was first published.

Links and References

  1. Oakland's Tin Gods San Francisco Call July 3, 1892
  2. The Beginnings of Oakland, AUC by Peter T. Conmy, 1961