STAPLES, Roy

From Islapedia
Capt. Chas. Staples and the Phillips family:
Jay D. Phillips (1860-1941), Cassie Hart Phillips (1878-1916) and Womak Phillips (1903-1952).
Santa Catalina Island, May 30, 1908
Photo courtesy of David R. Parsley who informs us the young boy, Womak, is looking cross because a large splinter has just been taken out of his foot.

STAPLES, Royal "Roy" Frank (1876-1935), young launchman and fishing boat captain at Avalon at the turn of the century. His boat was the Ramona. Roy, as he was called, was living and working in Avalon by 1904. His older brother, Robert, was killed in an accident at the sugar beet factory in Oxnard in 1900. His youngest brother apparently worked on the island for a time as well [1908], but died before 1920.


  • Mary Emeline Butler (1852-1920) = Ransom Roscoe Staples (1846-1917) [first marriage]
1. Orrin [Oran; Orin] R. Staples (1869- ), Sonora. (died by 1934)
2. Robert C. Staples (1870-1900) killed at Oxnard Sugar Factory Sept. 4, 1900.
3. Ransome Claude [Claude R.] Staples (1875-1937), Jerome, AZ
4. Royal Frank Staples (1876-1935), Long Beach in 1900; Avalon in 1904.
5. Minnie Staples [Mrs. Minnie Clark; Mrs. M. A. Dunn; Mrs. William Dunn of Los Angeles] (1878- ), (alive in 1934)
6. Gracie Viola Staples (1882-1891)
7. Charles Staples (1884-1913?) aka Charles Berjiman [1900 census]


  • Mary Emeline Staples née Butler = [1892] Henry Edmond Berjiman (1854-1934) of Chino [second marriage]

NOTE: The youngest Staples boy, "Charlie", was only 7 or 8 when his mother remarried in 1892. He was known by his stepfather's last name in the 1900 census. The above photograph "Capt. Chas. Staples" (left) at Avalon as a launchman on May 30, 1908. Photo courtesy of David R. Parsley, whose grandparents, Jay D. and Cassie Phillips, are in the photo with her son, Miles Womak Ellet.


Royal F. Staples = [1905] Clara A. Fulton [divorced]

Royal F. Staples = [1909] Mary L. Waizenger [divorced]

Royal F. Staples = [1915] Iva Kesselring

1. daughter



In the News~

April 3, 1900 [San Bernardino Sun]: “Representatives of the Southern Pacific company were in Chino Saturday last and made a settlement with Royal Staples for the injuries he received in the wreck at Pomona on Christmas. The company pays him $755 in full for personal injuries and $35 for a bicycle which was wrecked. Royal is improving satisfactorily, though not yet able to do hard work.”


October 5, 1900 [Weekly Sun]: “Papers were filed yesterday by Attorney Hugh Percy on behalf of Mrs. M. E. Benjamin [sic], in petition for letters of administration upon the estate of Robert Staples, who died on September 4, 1900, leaving personal property in the amount of $321.60, consisting in shares of oil company stock and other personal property. The petitioner is the mother of deceased and resides at Chino. The other heirs are brothers and sisters of deceased as follows: Orrin Staples, Sonora; Claude Staples, Jerome, Arizona; Royal Staples, Long Beach; Mamie Clark, Chino; and Charles Staples, Chino. The hearing of the case is set for Saturday, October 13, on the probate calendar.”


July 6, 1904 [LAT/SCat]: “Avalon. The marine tugs of war, yesterday afternoon was as spirited and exciting an event as an enthusiastic sportsman could desire… There were five rowers in each team, the winning team composing Mexican Joe, Hawley Farnsworth, John Robarts, George Michaelis and Alex Adargo. Opposing them were Tommy Whittley, George Farnsworth, ‘Chappie,’ Staples and Lindscow…”


June 12, 1905 [LAT/SCat]: “Avalon. The crew of the Lady Lou, the power glass-bottom boat, which plies to Seal Rocks, came upon a number of baby seals on one of the rocks yesterday, and for the entertainment of the passengers one was picked up and taken aboard, and afterwards brought up to Avalon. The little chap showed not the least sign of fear, but seemed to greatly enjoy being petted. It was returned to the rock in the afternoon where the mother seal was found, and when it was restored to her she seized it, as would a cat, by the back of the neck, and leaping into the water swam to a neighboring rock where she felt secure from vandals, and pushing the little one up out of reach of the waves scrambled up after it. This morning Roy Staples, first mate of the Lady Lou, brought up another little foundling, which apparently had no mother, and proposes to make a pet of it…”


November 8, 1905 [LAH]: “Marriage Licenses. Staples-Fulton—R. F. Staples, aged 28, a native of California and resident of Avalon; and Clara A. Fulton, aged 27, a native of Illinois and resident of Avalon.”


September 21, 1906 [LAT]: “Open or shut, is question. A meeting called of the citizens of Avalon... Warrants said to be out for certain persons alleging assault. Loss of a jewfish results in a Roy Staples also produced a warrant for the arrest of Tommy Whitley on a similar charge.”


January 19, 1907 [LAT/SCat]: “Avalon. Trouble over the fence, which has just been rebuilt along the beach by the Santa Catalina Island Company, resulted today in a merry fight and incidentally in a minor case of blood-shed. The Meteor Boat Company and the employees of the Island Company met in a grand mix-up this morning. Now there seems to be a truce, temporarily, with the Meteor Company claiming the first round as theirs. Trouble began brewing last summer between the Meteor Company and the Santa Catalina Island Company, and when the latter concern banished the boatmen’s stands from the beach and arranged for the boating business to be done from their wharves and through their agent, or from an opening in the fence at the extreme end of the bay, the situation became strained between the two companies. The result of this was that open hostilities began this morning when the Meteor Company began business again after a lapse of six weeks, during which that company was fixing up their boats at San Pedro. The Meteor Boat Company is the owner of the glass-bottom powerboats Empress, Lady Lou and Cleopatra. About a week ago the latter boat was brought over, and it gradually leaked out that the owners took issue with the Island Company as to their claims and rights, and that they were intending to bring about conditions that would throw the matter into the courts and bring out a definite ruling as to ownership of a certain strip of land lying between high-water mark and the county road. In pursuance of this program this morning Compton and Newberry cut out a section of the fence, which they claim is far too low on the beach to make any rights the Island Company may have, and therefore illegally constructed. The break was immediately repaired by the Island Company, and when the Cleopatra came in to pick up a lot of passengers for a trip to Seal Rocks, the boatmen found their landing-way again barred. Determined not to use the place appointed to them, W. M. Hunt, Jr., also a member of the Meteor Company, attempted to again cut the wires, in his effort, as he says, to force his arrest and thus bring the matter into the courts, and his point was gained for he was promptly placed under arrest. He was allowed to go on his own recognizance at first, but on account of ‘pernicious activity,’ the arresting officer started to escort him to jail, but he produced bail and was allowed his liberty. Captain Newberry then attempted to ram the fence with the Cleopatra, which was built for landing on the beach without the aid of a wharf, but the tide was not sufficiently high, and he failed to reach it. Procuring a grappling hook, however, he succeeded, after an hour’s struggle with the employees of the Island Company, in demolishing about one hundred feet of the fence, furnishing the most exciting episode the islanders have witnessed in many moons. In the course of this struggle, Roy Staples, an employee of the Meteor Company, who was actively engaged in seeing that the hook caught, and held to the wires, got mixed up with a dozen or so of the cholos who were just as strenuously attempting to cut away the hook, and as a result he got a beating and a cut on the side of the head. Having accomplished sufficient destruction, Captain Newberry then attempted to get his passengers on board, but in getting the gang-plank up, he was opposed by the whole Island Company’s force. Calling for assistance from the bystanders about an equal number responded, and there was a merry mix for a few minutes. The opposing factions fought up and down the beach, into the water and out, until Captain Newberry got his hook into the ropes on the plank, and putting on steam, backed out into deep water, and finally succeeded in getting his passengers aboard. This incident also resulted in several arrests, and the end is not yet. The Cleopatra was not molested on her return. Act two will presumably be set in the courts.”


August 27, 1910 [San Bernardino Sun]: “Fears for son. Doctors baffled. Chino, Aug. 26. Mrs. H. E. Berjiman was in Los Angeles Thursday to see her son, Charlie Clark [Staples], who has been sick in the hospital for two weeks. The nature of his complaint seems not to have been determined; the doctors not agreeing. Mrs. Berjiman was inclined to make an effort to transfer him to the Pasadena hospital, but no change was made yesterday.”


October 11, 1913 [San Bernardino Sun]: “Mrs. H. E. Berjiman and granddaughter, and her son, Charlie Clark, went to San Bernardino Sunday, going to the springs for Charley's benefit, who has been sick for quite a long time.”


October 14, 1913 [San Bernardino Sun]: “Mrs. H. E. Berjiman went to Los Angeles this morning to visit her daughter, Mrs. Minnnie Clarke, and also her son [Royal] at Catalina.”


October 18, 1913: “Notification of Discontinuance. October 18, 1913. 1. C. 2027. Roy Staples vs. Santa Catalina Island Company. On September 22, 1913, the Commission received a telegram from Roy Staples of Avalon, complaining that the Company had served notice on all its patrons that they would discontinue service excepting between the hours of five and ten-thirty at night and that this would cause irreparable damage to the residents. A representative of the Commission was sent to Avalon and an investigation made of the matter, after which the Company was instructed that in the event they wished to cut down the hours of service, it would be necessary to make formal application of the Commission to do so. Nothing further having been heard from the complaint, and as no application to discontinue service was received, the incident was considered closed.” [Appendix to the Journals of the Senate and Assembly of the State of California Volume 3, 1915]


December 5, 1913 [San Pedro Daily News]: “Lost fishermen found this morning. Picked up 20 miles southeast of here, 7 miles from Avalon by Capt. Roy Staples, of launch Ramona. Gus Gustavison, local fisherman, who had not been heard from since Saturday morning when he left in his small boat to set his lines, was picked up this morning seven miles from Avalon by the launch Ramona, Capt. Roy Staples. Too much praise cannot be given Capt. Staples for his alertness in this respect as he is always on the watch for helpless boats and that Gus Gustavison is alive today is due to the valor of this young captain. The launch Ramona left Avalon about 6 a.m. this morning en route to San Pedro harbor and at once the glasses were put to work to sight just such helpless boats as Gustavison's. They saw a speck coming in range with his eagle eye at times, and changed his course thinking it might possibly be a boat in distress. As they neared the floating object they distinguished the figure of a man setting in his boat, erect as a statue grasping his oars. The man was nearly famished and talked incoherently and grasped his oars with a death like prip. Weak and half demented and with swollen and parched lips he was carried aboard the Ramona and hurried to San Pedro where he lives and was taken by his son to the County Hospital in a weak condition. With careful nursing and proper nourishment it is hoped he will be at his place in a few days as a familiar character along the waterfront. The case is a remarkable one as Gustavison left here Saturday morning in a 14 foot skiff with no food or water and had been blown to sea by a heavy gale and endured the cold night and day, and the pangs of thirst and hunger all this time, and had drifted 20 miles southeast of here.”


December 5, 1913 [SBMP]: “Los Angeles, Dec. 5.—After having been adrift on the ocean, in an open boat without food or water for six days, John Gustaff, a fisherman, 70 years old, was rescued today eighteen miles off Los Angeles harbor by the launch Ramona. Gustaff went to sea last Saturday in a row boat, intending to fish for a few hours. He was blown out to sea by a wind so strong that his strength was unequal to the task of rowing against it successfully. He was nearly unconscious when picked up today, but it was believed he would recover.”


March 17, 1914 [TI/Avalon]: “Candidates for Avalon city offices were noted as follows: ...Roy Staples for City Clerk...”


April 6, 1914 [San Pedro News Pilot]: “So the people of Avalon may know, Mrs. Jennie Kesselring announces the engagement of her daughter, Iva, to Royal Staples. The wedding is to take place in December—Avalon Wireless.”


April 27, 1915 [TI/Avalon]: “A black sea bass weighing 230 pounds was caught Sunday by Captain Enos Vera and Captain Roy Staples. The catch was made near Seal Rocks.”


February 8, 1916 [TI/Avalon]: “Two large albacore were caught by J. C. Gorham of San Francisco and C. Louis Allen of New York. Allen's weighed 48-½ pounds, while Gorham's tipped the scales at 48 pounds. They were caught from the launch Ramona, Captain Roy Staples.”


March 14, 1916 [TI/Avalon]: “Roy Staples brought in the first white sea bass of the season. It weighed 22 pounds. Yellowtail and mackerel were also seen in the bay.”


April 18, 1916 [San Pedro News Pilot]: “Officers of the new "Avalon Fish Exchange" are K.S. Walker, president; O. I. Danielson, vice-president; Roy Staples, secretary, and I. L. Newberry, treasurer...”


September 19, 1916 [TI/Avalon]: “Roy Staples was building a cottage on Beacon Street.”


March 20, 1917 [TI/Avalon]: “Captain R. Staples was appointed special deputy sheriff for Avalon.”


June 19, 1917 [TI/Avalon]: “The first bonita of the season was taken by Captain Roy Staples.”


December 4, 1917 [TI/Avalon]: “Captain Roy Staples, secretary of the Fish Exchange, reported 5600 pounds of albacore and other fish shipped to mainland markets during the week. Five yellowtail were caught and 22 rock bass.”


August 6, 1918 [TI/Avalon]: “The following were Avalon launch-men (fishing boats) in 1918: Sam Goulding, Geo. G. Farnsworth, S. Westbrook, I. L. Newberry, B. D. Halstead, C. A. Fisher, Harry Nichols, Hugh McKay, Monte Foster, A. L. McKelvey, J. J. Bates, W. L. Heral, John Kassar, Claude Wickman, Alex Adargo, Mexican Joe, Enos Vera [Veira], J. A. Anderson, Harry Stoughton, O. I. Danielson, Roy Staples, John Edmundson, Smith Warren, Tad Gray, Kent Walker, Charles Paradise and J. H. S. Boerstler.”


November 23, 1920 [Pomona Press]: “Funeral services for Mrs. Mary Emeline Berjiman, who was 68 years of age at the time of her death, had resided in California 44 years, 32 of which she she had spent in Chino. She is survived by her husband, Henry E. Berjiman, three sons, Oran R. Staples, Claude R. Staples of Chino, Royal F. Staples of Gardena; a daughter, Mrs. M. A. Dunn of Los Angeles, five sisters, Mrs. Lottie Butler of Chino, Mrs. S. J. Hoopingarner, Mrs. A. Sigler, Mrs. J. Sigler, Mrs. C. R. Boyd of Oregon, and by three brothers, B. Butler, W. Butler of Arizona and J. Butler of Portland, Oregon.”


'November 28, 1920 [San Bernardino Sun]: “On Monday Mary E. Berjiman, wife of Henry Berjiman, passed away at the family residence on Fourth Street. She was 68 years old and a native of Oregon and had been a resident of Chino for many years. She leaves a husband and four children by a former marriage. Orrin R. Staples, Claude R. Staples, Royal F. Staples and Minnie Dunn. Rev. Charles Miller of the Christian Church of Pomona conducted the funeral services. The interment was in the Pomona cemetery.


January 7, 1925 [TI/Avalon]: “Mrs. Berkey is making Avalon her home, having recently purchased the Staples home, 211 Clarissa Avenue and is delighted to be an islander.”


December 16, 1934 [?]: “Henry Edmond Berjiman of Chino, one of San Bernardino county's pioneers, died Sunday night at a local hospital...The pioneer is survived by three stepsons: R. C. Staples of Narod, O. R. Staples of Los Angeles, and R. F. Staples of Running Springs park; and by a stepdaughter, Mrs. William Dunn of Los Angeles.”


December 8, 1935 [San Bernardino Sun]: “Heart attack takes mountain merchant. Royal Frank Staples died suddenly of a heart attack at 6 p.m. yesterday at Running Springs park, where he operated a restaurant and grocery store. Mr. Staples was 59 years old, a native of Chino and had resided at Running Springs for 10 years. He was a member of the Rollins Noble post of the United Spanish War Veterans in San Bernardino. Deputy Coroner William Weiler investigated. Surviving are his widow, Mrs. Ive Staples; a sister, Mrs. Minnie Dunne of Los Angeles; two brothers, Claude of Ontario and Orin Staples of Los Angeles; a daughter, Mrs. Mary Cassidy of San Bernardino, and two grandchildren. Funeral arrangements are pending with the Mark B, Shaw Co. in charge.”


December 8, 1935 [San Bernardino Sun]: “Died. Staples—In San Bernardino county, California at Running Springs Park, December 6, 1935, Royal Frank Staples, 59, native of Chino and resident of Running Springs 10 years. Funeral services 2 p.m. Monday from Mark B. Shaw Memorial chapel; interment Mountain View Cemetery.