NAME, Years Elected to City Council

L N Cobbledick (1867-1914) was elected to City Council in 1909.




L N Cobbledick was born on February 15, 1867 in Oakland. His father, James Cobbledick, was an early Oakland pioneer- he came to California in 1850. L N was one of 11 kids: five boys and six girls. Cobbledick attended Franklin Elementary School and Oakland High School. Early in his carrier he worked at the Whittier-Fuller Company and learned the glass business. He eventually started his own business in 1891, the Cobbledick Glass Company. (Also described as the Cobbledick-Kibbe Glass Company after his death.8) This was one of the biggest glass companies in Oakland, had a department devoted to manufacturing leaded art glass and the mirror silvering plant was one of the biggest on the West Coast.9 The first Cobbledick Glass Company Building was at 358 12th Street and sold paint, oils and wall paper. The next store was at 401 12th Street. After the 1906 Earthquake, he got rid of the paints and sold only glass and mirrors at 712-714 Broadway.2 He lived at 1129 4th Avenue. He was married to Florence White, daughter of Wilson and Elizabeth White. Wilson White was the owner of the California Jute Mills. They had two sons, Lloyd N Cobbledick and Wilson Cobbledick. He was a member of the Civil Service Commission and served in the National Guard for fifteen years. He went to the First Congregational Church.

Cobbledick was a Mason, a member of the Native Sons, Woodmen of the World and of the Commercial Club.He was also a member of the Clinton Improvement Club.10

Cobbledick also raised fancy chickens. He especially liked Barred Rock chickens. He once gave a lecture called "Raising and Conditioning Fowls."13

According to a contemporary source, Cobbledick ran for City Council at the urging of Mayor Frank K. Mott (perhaps because he was also a strong supporter of Mott). He was the councilmember behind the anti-slot machine ordinance and was influential having Hopkins Blvd (the future MacArthur Blvd) in "from Lake Merritt to the Foothill Boulevard, connecting with Mills College."4 

Another source said he worked hard to have the "marsh between Eighth street and Lake Merritt filled in. He also labored just as earnestly for the abolishment of the old wooden bridge (which?) on Eighth Street and the reopening of that street as a thoroughfare... He was one of the prime movers in forwarding the plan of building the immense auditorium (which?) on that newly built site to fill the longfelt want of Oakland for such a building."11

Cobbledick also proposed an ordinance (based a contemporary law in San Francisco) that would ban "vicious" movies in Oakland. The ordinance proposed a five-member board of censors that would decide what films that could be shown. Prize-fights, hold-ups and people getting beaten up would all be barred. Mayor Mott supported it.In 1909, members of the Church Temperance League accused Cobbledick of giving someone a liquor license in return for a political debt. Cobbledick called it "lies, lies, deliberate lies."7

In a slightly more progressive, proto-Nader move, Cobbledick also advocated for better fenders on street cars.

When the Southern Pacific lease expired, he argued against renewing the lease. (Possibly because of his opposition) a deal was struck so the lease was made for 35 years with Southern Pacific paying a higher rental fee and being responsible for street maintenance and lighting on 7th Street.12

His funeral was held at the Scottish Rite Hall.5






  1. "L. N. COBBLEDICK DIES IN OAKLAND: Prominent Merchant Passes Away at His Home After Long Illness." San Francisco Chronicle: Feb 19, 1914.
  2. Blake, Evarts. Greater Oakland. 1911.
  3. Blake.
  4. Blake
  5. "L N Cobbledick dies in Oakland."
  6. "PROPOSES A LAW TO REGULATE PICTURES: Cobbledick Prepares Measure Providing for Board of Censors." San Francisco Chronicle: July 10, 1910.
  7. "CHARGES "LIES," SAYS COBBLEDICK: East Oakland Councilman Is Wroth at Mullen and A. E. Aitken." San Francisco Chronicle: Apr 27, 1909.
  8. Past & Present of Alameda County. SJ Clark Publ Co, 1914.
  9. Past & Present.
  10. Past & Present.
  11. Past & Present.
  12. Past & Present.
  13. "EXPERT WILL TALK TO CHICKEN FANCIERS." San Francisco Call: July 25, 1911.