Devine House: City of Riverside Landmark #30
Location: 4475 Twelfth Street
Date Established: 6/2/1888
Date Visited: 6/20/2014
The Devine house was established in 1888, when after being married for one year Frank and Vinie Devine moved into there then recently completed Queen Anne Style home.
Frank Devine was born in 1848 in Rochester, New York. He was a good student and studied be a clerk and a bookkeeper. In 1870 he moved to New York and continued working for different businesses in New York. It was there he met his first wife was Miss Annie Moran (who died in 1877). In 1882 he moved to Los Angeles and worked for the German Fruit Company who made Frank Devine their general manager of their newly opened branch in Riverside in 1885. *
Business went well and in May of 1887 Frank Devine and John Boyd formed a business partnership and bought out the business and started exporting citrus under the famous “Sunbeam” label. As business grew Frank Devine became a big supporter of local institutions in Riverside, especially the Catholic Church of whom he was a member. One of the organizations in which Frank Devine was a founding member was the Victoria Club which was organized in 1889 and incorporated in 1903. The business had a bit of a problem in 1891 when John Boyd died suddenly and his estate was not to go to his wife in Riverside but to John Boyd’s first wife (whom he did not officially divorce) in Canada. Luckily, the house was in Vinie Devine’s name and Frank Devine was able to reorganize his export business as “The Frank B. Devine Company.” Frank Devine continued to work in the citrus industry until his death in 1923 and his wife lived in the house until her death in 1942.**
Besides the Devine family other notable people living in the home were Dr. Homer Chapman who was chemist at UCR boarding in the home, Clifford Brown who bought the home in 1947 and made some additions in the backyard, and Terry Bridges who was an attorney from Best, Best, and Krieger (currently a large law firm in Riverside) who bought the home in 1970. **
* An Illustrated History of Southern California embracing the counties of San Diego San Bernardino Los Angeles and Orange and the peninsula of lower California. The Lewis Publishing Company, Chicago, Illinois. 1890. AccessGenealogy.com. Web. 22 June 2014. http://www.accessgenealogy.com/california/biography-of-frank-b-devine.htm – Last updated on Sep 22nd, 2011
** Adobes, Bungalows, and Mansions of Riverside, California. Rubidoux Printing, Riverside, California, 1985
Moral of the story: Keep your will updated!
You should work for the Riverside Chamber of Commerce. At least, you should let them in on what you are posting!
I’m the granddaughter of Clifford Brown mentioned above. He and his wife Christine E. Brown, a.k.a. “Graggy” to her many loving grandchildren and great-grandchildren, loved this home. So did their son Ted who returns for frequent visits. Our family owned and operated Contractors Service Company in Riverside since 1948.
Thank you for visiting! It is interesting to hear how the family business evolved.