Chandler, Alexander J.


July 15, 1859, Coaticook, Quebec, Canada



May 8, 1950, Chandler, Arizona


Julia Pope Chandler Loftus
Charlotte Boyd Chandler,
Rosa Bell Chandler Wilson




Mary Ann LorimerJoseph Chandler

Alexander John Chandler, or A. J., was born in 1859 in the small town of Coaticook, Quebec. After completing secondary school, he attended McGill University in Montreal where he studied veterinary medicine.  Graduating in 1882, Chandler worked as a livestock inspector for the Canadian government before going into private veterinary practice in Detroit.

 When representatives from the Arizona Territory approached him with an offer to become the territory's veterinary surgeon, A. J. quickly accepted, despite the significant decrease in pay.  He arrived in Prescott, the territorial capital of Arizona, on August 8, 1887, in the midst of a drought.  He decided it was better to resign his position and seek opportunity in California, but before he left he toured the Barbacamori Ranch in southern Arizona after a monsoon storm.  The tour made him realize that the key to desert development was controlling water.  He continued to California to study irrigation techniques, and returned to Arizona to start an ambitious plan to accumulate land and water rights in the Salt River Valley.  With capital from his partners Dexter Ferry and C. C. Bowen, and with a scheme to take advantage of loopholes in the Desert Land Act, Chandler went about the business of building a network of canals and accumulating a massive amount of land south of the Salt River Valley.  The end result of the project was the establishment of the town of Chandler, Arizona, centered around the luxurious San Marcos Hotel.

A. J. was married three times, but never had children of his own.  He married his first wife Julia Pope Chandler on September 23, 1890. She was the daughter of a St Louis, MO judge.  She left him in 1913 and moved to California.  His second wife, Charlotte Boyd Chandler, was an entertainer from Philadelphia who suffered from several health problems.  After a short marriage, Charlotte passed away.  Dr. Chandler's third wife was Rosa Bell Chandler Wilson.  Rosa survived Dr. Chandler by nearly forty years.  She had two children from a previous marriage, and after A. J.'s death she moved to Virginia and remarried.

To see additional pictures of Dr. Chandler, click HERE.

To read documents articles about Dr. Chandler, click HERE.

To read newspaper articles about Dr. Chandler, click HERE.


-Dr. Chandler donates funds for clearing a roadway to connect the state highway from Chandler to Higley.  (Chandler Arizonan 1/17/1913)

-Dr. Chandler returned home Sunday from Los Angeles with Contractor C.B. Weaver and Architect Benton.  (Chandler Arizonan 1/24/1913)

-Dr. Chandler spent a few days in Chandler, and then last week went to Los Angeles on business.  (Chandler Arizonan 1/31/1913)

-Dr. Chandler is hosting Thomas Marshall, governor of Indiana and vice-president elect, showing him and a few others around Chandler.  (Chandler Arizonan 2/14/1913)

-Dr. Chandler is one of the directors' of the Bank of Chandler.  (Chandler Arizonan 2/14/1913)

-Dr. Chandler is one of the largest landowners in the Salt River area.  He believes St. Louis, Missouri is the best place to advertise Chandler and bring people here.  (Chandler Arizonan 3/7/1913)

-Dr. Chandler appeared at the dance at the San Marcos Hotel last Saturday.  (Chandler Arizonan 4/18/1913)

-Dr. Chandler has spent the last few months investigating the refund for the power assessment #9, and who the money should go to.  He finally decided the land holders should receive it, and will be giving the deeds to the land to them also.  (Chandler Arizonan 4/25/1913)

-Dr. Chandler made a motion to have a vote of thanks to the retiring officers and board of directors' of the Chandler Chamber of Commerce at their meeting on Monday.  (Chandler Arizonan 5/9/1913)

-Dr. Chandler went with Grace Taylor, Mrs. Crenshaw, and Mr. Loftus to the Granite Reef Dam on Saturday afternoon and came back that evening.  (Chandler Arizonan 5/30/1913)

-Dr. Chandler has agreed for rooms in the hotel and various townsites can be used for the 4th of July celebration.  (Chandler Arizonan 6/13/1913)

-Dr. Chandler is the owner and main shareholder of the Chandler Arizonan.  (Chandler Arizonan 6/13/1913)

-Dr. Chandler is in Los Angeles on business.  (Chandler Arizonan 6/13/1913)

-Dr. Chandler is no longer listed as one of the directors of the Bank of Chandler.  (Chandler Arizonan 6/20/1913)

-Dr. Chandler has been working with the railroad companies to secure a good rate to bring in farm labor and S.P. has agreed.  (Chandler Arizonan 6/27/1913)

-Dr. Chandler donated $10.00 for the 4th of July celebration.  (Chandler Arizonan 6/27/1913)

-Dr. Chandler was in Bisbee talking to the Copper Queen mining company when he found out they made a $98,000 order for eggs from Kansas.  (Chandler Arizonan 6/27/1913

-Dr. Chandler visited Tucson and Bisbee last week.  (Chandler Arizonan 6/27/1913)

-Dr. Chandler gave E.W. Hudson a male and female ostrich for his governmental experiment station.  The chicks came from his farm in Mesa.  (Reprinted from Mesa Correspondense in the Arizona Gazette Chandler Arizonan 7/4/1913)

-Dr. Chandler entertained a group of businessmen from Mesa at the San Marcos Hotel where they were served a fine dinner.  (Reprinted from the Mesa Free Press Chandler Arizonan 7/4/1913)

-Dr. Chandler returned from a long business trip to Los Angeles early in the week.  (Chandler Arizonan 7/11/1913)

-"From the amount of inquiries over on the coast regarding this section, I look for the greatest fall and winter in the history of the Salt River Valley," said Dr. Chandler.  "Prospects are very good.  With such a good administration as we have at present to straighten out the money situation.  It means great things for the Valley."

"The cotton outlook over in the Chandler vicinity is very bright.  About 1,500 acres are planted.  It is in bloom now, and the cotton boils are forming.  It will be ready to pick by the last of September."

"If we make a success this year everything will go along smoothly in the future.  There is no question about us growing cotton.  What we have to look after is to see that it is handled right."  (Reprinted from the Gazette Chandler Arizonan 7/11/1913)

-Dr. Chandler has gained control of the Chandler Improvement Company and elected President.  This happened after the Ferry people retired from the board of directors.  (Chandler Arizonan 7/18/1913)

-Dr. Chandler has moved into his new office at the San Marcos Hotel which corners the court.  His quarters are the front half of what was originally supposed to be a private dining room.  (Chandler Arizonan 7/18/1913)

-Dr. Chandler left early in the week for Los Angeles, and will later join his wife at the beaches.  (Chandler Arizonan 7/18/1913)

-Dr. Chandler has hired George Hageman of Phoenix to make Chandler a flyless burg.  (Chandler Arizonan 7/25/1913)

-Dr. Chandler with other Chandler men have formed the Valley Investment Company which will build homes for Chandler.  (Chandler Arizonan 8/1/1913)

The 19201921 and 1923 Chandler City Directories list him as president of the Bank of Chandler, Chandler Improvement Co., Chandler Water & Power Co., Chandler Land  Securities  Co., and Consolidated Canal Co. His residence was the Hotel San Marcos.

The 1921 directory adds that he was also president of the San Marcos Hotel.

The 1925 and 1926 Chandler City Directories said he was president of San Marcos Hotel Co. and the Bank of Chandler and that he and his wife Charlotte lived at the San Marcos Hotel.

1929: He was president of Chandler Improvement Co., Chandler Heights Citrus Inc., Chandler Land & Securities Co., Consolidated Canal Co., San Marcos Hotel Co. and Bank of Chandler. He lived at the San Marcos Hotel with Charlotte.

1930: President of Bank of Chandler, Chandler Improvement Co. and Consolidated Canal Co. He and Charlotte lived at the hotel. The 1931 directory said he was president of the bank and improvement company and that he and Charlotte lived at the hotel.

The 1932 directory said he was president of the improvement company and that he and Charlotte lived at the hotel. The 1940 Chandler Resident Directory also said he was president of the Chandler Improvement Co. and still lived at the hotel, with the phone number 49.