James F. Crank came to California from New York in 1874 and bought the Fair Oaks Ranch in Pasadena from Benjamin S. Eaton in 1877. Crank was active in Los Angeles, where he organized the First National Bank, became an owner of the Los Angeles Times, helped secure Westlake Park for the city, and gave land for the Raymond Hotel in Pasadena. He was instrumental in the founding of the Los Angeles and San Gabriel Valley Railroad, which began operation in 1885 and was sold to the Santa Fe Railroad in 1887. He built the first cable street railway in the West in Los Angeles in 1889 and helped found the city of Monrovia, CA, in 1886.
From the description of Papers of James Filmore Crank, 1880-1902. (Huntington Library, Art Collections & Botanical Gardens). WorldCat record id: 122383131