Royal (Bob) Bowman Ford (June 21, 1884 – ?) was an artist and illustrator who had a brief business partnership with artist Ed Borein.

Ford was born June 21, 1884 in Oakland to Cornelius John (C.J.) Ford (1855 – 1899) and Jennie Evelyn Bowman (Ford) (1860 – 1933). The Fords also had a daughter, Edna Corneil Ford (1880 – 1956).

San Francisco Call 3

C.J. Ford worked for the Central Pacific Railroad (later Southern Pacific), eventually becoming an engineer. He was engineer of the Los Angeles Express, and on August 8, 1899, there was a terrible accident near Dos Palos, CA. The train derailed, and Ford and the fireman, Porter Woods, were badly scalded by steam escaping from the wrecked locomotive. They both succumbed to their injuries. 1,3 C.J.'s remains were returned to Oakland, and interred in Mountain View Cemetery. Royal Ford made a $5,000 claim against the railroad, and Jennie was given guardianship of him with regards to the claim. 2

The 1906 directory lists the Fords living at 756 - 13th Street. 4

Edna worked as a music and piano teacher, and later lived at 1051 Walker St. with her mother and aunt, Harriet W. Bowman.

Royal apparently spent some time in Walla Walla, WA (based on his WWI draft card, where he lists 1051 Walker as his address.) He eventually moved to Houston, Texas (based on his WWII draft card), but there the trail goes cold. The 1940 census lists Royal B. Ford in Houston as a sign painter and as widowed, but so far no trace of a marriage has been found.

Links and References

  1. Wreck of the Los Angeles Express Sacramento Record-Union August 9, 1899
  2. News Notes from the Superior Court Oakland Tribune July 14, 1900
  3. Engineer and Fireman Died in Awful Agony San Francisco Call August 9, 1899
  4. Husted's Oakland 1906