Normally a blunt, outspoken man, given to great bouts of uninhibited conversation with friends and associates, A. P. Giannini seldom talked at any length about his childhood on the California frontier. On those few occasions when he did, however, he claimed that it had been one of the most decisive experiences of his life. "San Jose had a population of about fourteen thousand," he said toward the end of his life. "It was located in the Santa Clara Valley about fifty miles from San Francisco. Back in the days of the gold rush, it had been a pretty rough town. But then things settled down and families began moving in to buy land on which to farm.....I didn't care very much for farming, but it is sincere, honest work which is the best recipe for happiness I know."
-Felice A. Bonadio, A. P. Giannini: Banker of America