South Main Meat Market

Interior of the South Main Meat Market, c. 1920. (Kelley House Collection, Kelley House Photographs)

In 1874, Dudley O. Philbrick left the employ of the Mendocino Lumber Company to open a meat market in Mendocino. Philbrick constructed a building on the south side of Main Street across from the intersection of Main and Kasten Streets. The lumber company, which owned the property, supplied the lumber, and Philbrick was given several years occupancy of the building for constructing it. In 1878, he quit the retail meat business to give his whole attention to the Philbrick ranch near the Halfway House on the Ukiah road.

Philbrick sold his business to W. H. Kent of Little River, another of the early settlers who operated the extensive Kent ranch at Little River. Kent engaged in general farming but specialized in the meat business with a slaughter house at the Little River ranch.

In 1888, Kent retired from the business and his employee George Bowman owned and operated the market here until the mid-1890s when he left the meat business to take over the bottling works of L. H. Bither. Bowman was succeeded by Thomas Beggs, who carried on the meat market until 1914, when he passed away.

The Quaill brothers, who had been employed by Beggs, purchased the market from Beggs’ widow. Tony Quaill eventually sold his interest to his brother Joe and moved to Willits. Joe established a slaughter house in the eastern part of town and conducted both a wholesale and retail business until he closed the market and went to San Francisco to live in the 1950s. This building was demolished in 1960.

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