Part of the American History and Genealogy Project

Washington Pioneer Dead 1912

By Thomas W. Prosch

In this article those persons only are considered pioneers who lived in Washington, and who came to the Pacific Coast before 1860.  The Information given is derived chiefly from the newspapers of the day. In some cases it was meager. No doubt there were other departed pioneers, but of them the biographer had no knowledge.

Arnold, A. W. Born in New York in 1 830; died at Coupeville, Island County, Dec. 14th, aged 82 years. Mr. Arnold came to Puget Sound in 1857, and during the following fifty-five years lived most of the time on Whidby Island. He left four sons and two daughters.

Barlow, George W. Born in Michigan in 1 842; died at his home in Steilacoom, Oct. 15th, aged 70 years. He came to Washington territory in I 852, where he lived a long term of years and until his removal to Pierce County. He was a steamboat owner and master, not only on the Columbia River, but on Puget Sound. His more recent vessels were the Skagit Chief, Greyhound, Multnomah and others of their time. He left a wife and daughter. Three brothers and a sister also survive him.

Barnes, George A. Born in New York state in 1821; died at Olympia, Nov. 29th, aged 91 years. He came to Oregon overland in 1 848, and in 1 849 went on to California. The following year he returned to the east, but was soon again headed for the North Pacific Coast. During the sixty years ending with his death he lived in Olympia. He was town trustee, mayor, president of the chamber of commerce, mer-chant, banker, and in other respects one of the leading citizens. Three times he was married, but had no children and the only near relative he left was a sister.

Bernier, Julien. Born in Washington territory; died Dec. 1st in Lewis County, aged 67 years. The first Bernier to come to Washington was one of the French Canadians brought here by the Northwest Fur Company in 181 1. In 1819 he had a son born at Spokane House, who was the first white child born in Oregon, Washington or British Columbia Marcel Isadore Bernier. The Bernier family settled in Lewis County about seventy years ago. When Michael T. Simmons and the other first American settlers came along in 1845, Marcel Bernier showed them the way to Puget Sound.

Betz, Jacob. Born in Bavaria; died at Tacoma, Nov. 16th, aged 69 years. He came to America in 1849, to California in 1856, and to Washington territory in 1872. He was councilman and mayor of Walla Walla, prospered in business and was a substantial citizen. In 1 904 he removed to Tacoma. A widow, two daughters and two sons survive him.

Beuston, Adam. Born in Scotland in 1824; died in Pierce County, March 25th, aged 88 years. As an employee of the Hudson Bay Company, Mr. Beuston came to Puget Sound in 1 84 1 , and lived in Washington a longer period than any of the other deceased pioneers of 1912, nearly 71 years. He became a citizen of the United States, and as such took a 320-acre donation claim in Puyallup valley, and later took a pre-emption claim near Hillhurst. Mr. Beuston was married three times. The town of Beuston, on the Tacoma & Eastern Railway, got its name from him. A son and eight grandchildren were left.

Boren, Carson D. Born Dec. 12th, 1824, at Nashville, Tennessee; died at his home near Seattle, Aug. 19th, aged 88 years. Mr. Boren was one of the famous party who crossed the plains in 1851 and settled at Alki Point in November of that year. With one exception (his sister, Mrs. D. T. Denny), he was the last survivor of the twelve adults who there and then began the settlement that has since become the city of Seattle. Mr. Boren spent the last sixty-one years of his life in King County, as a town proprietor, carpenter, farmer and in other vocations incident to a life in a new country. He was the first sheriff, in 1853. His land claim was located in what is now the heart of Seattle, including the Hoge building site, where the Boren home was established sixty years ago.

Boren, Livonia Gertrude. Born at Abington, Illinois, Dec. 1 2th, 1850; died in King County, June 4th, aged 61 years. She was the daughter of Carson D. Boren, and, as a child one year of age, was a member of the party of twelve adults and twelve children who were at Alki Point, November 13th, 1851, and who are now commonly regarded as the "Founders of Seattle." Miss Boren lived all her life except the first eleven months in or near Seattle. Her family connections cousins were very numerous.

Bozorth, Christopher C. Born in Missouri, Jan. 1, 1832; died at his home in Cowlitz County, Nov. 5th, aged 81 years. He came with his people to Oregon in 1845, but in 1851 settled in what is now Washington. In 1881 he founded the town of Woodland. During his long residence in that locality he was fourteen years justice of the peace, was assessor of Clarke County, assessor of Cowlitz County, and member of the territorial legislature.

Burk, Peter. Born in Ireland; died in Pierce County, Dec. 6th, aged 90 years. He came to the United States about sixty years ago. He enlisted in the army at Fortress Monroe in 1853, and the following year was sent to the Pacific. In 1855-56 he was doing military duty at Forts Vancouver and Steilacoom. He located in the territory at the expiration of his term of enlistment. He lived on the county farm during the last twenty-three years.

Camp, Moholoh Schluesher. Born in Missouri in 1838; died at Kettle Falls, Washington, Feb. 18th. In 1852 she came to Oregon, where, the next year, she was married to Benjamin Camp. In 1 864 they moved to Waitsburg, Walla Walla County. Seven of her eleven children survive her.

Carr, Lucie L. Whipple. Born in Pennsylvania, Dec. 2d, I 832; died in Yakima County, Sept. 26th, aged 80 years. Miss Whipple married Ossian J. Carr in 1856. They were of the same age, had known each other from infancy, and her body was laid in the grave with his five weeks following his interment. She came to Oregon in 1858, to Washing-ton first in 1861, and a second time in 1876. In the summer of 1862 she taught a three months' term of the Seattle public school in the first territorial university building, hers (following A. S. Mercer's) being the second school there taught. There were then only about twenty-five or thirty children in Seattle's public school, where now are about forty thousand. Mrs. Carr was one of the five sisters who were pioneer women of Oregon, the others being Mrs. Susannah Bagley, Mrs. Jane West, Mrs. Edna A. Colbert and Mrs. Ann E. Mann.

Carr, Ossian J. Born in Dryden, N. Y., Oct. 18th, 1832; died at Seattle, Aug. 23d, aged 80 years. Mr. Carr came to Oregon in 1858, where he lived about three years, when he and his family came to Seattle. In the latter place he engaged as a mechanic in the construction of the first university buildings. The following year they went back to Oregon, where they stayed until 1876, when they returned to Seattle. Mr. Carr served nearly three years as assistant postmaster, following by eight years as postmaster of Seattle. He left a wife and daughter.

Carson, Isaac. Born in Hendricks County, Indiana, Aug. 1st, I 832; died in Pierce County, Washington, March 14th, aged 80 years. He came to Oregon in 1 851. In the Rogue River Indian war he served as a volunteer, for bravery being promoted from the ranks. In 1860 he was married (Sept. 30th) in Danville, Indiana, he and Mrs. Carson immediately coming to the Pacific coast. Settling later in Pierce County, he was elected sheriff, and afterwards was a member of the territorial legislature from Walla Walla, Garfield and Asotin Counties. Mrs. Carson and three married daughters survive him.

Christopher, Thomas. Born in Norway in 1832; died in King County, Dec. 6th, aged 80 years. He left home at ten years of age, and after nine years at sea went ashore at San Francisco in 1852. He mined in California for several years but came to Steilacoom, Pierce County, in 1858. In 1863 he settled on a land claim in King County, where the town of Christopher now is. He was one of the first (if not the first) Norwegians in Pierce and King Counties. He left a married daughter.

Davis, Henry C. Born in Indiana, he died near Chehalis, April 21st, aged 66 years. With his parents, he came to Washington Territory in 1851, settling at Claquato, in Lewis County, which at that time included all of Puget Sound. A wife and son were left.

Dunbar, Ralph Oregon. Born in Illinois, April 26th, 1845; died at Olympia, Sept. 19th. He came to Oregon with his parents' family in 1846. They settled in Marion County. There the son remained until 1867, when he came to Olympia. He studied law in the office of Elwood Evans, being admitted to practice in 1869. He went (1871) into the country east of the Cascade Mountains. Until 1889 he was editor of a newspaper, practicing attorney, legislator, etc. In that year he was a member of the convention that framed the state constitution, and at' the first election was chosen by the people as a member of the new state Supreme Court, an honor which was continued to him at subsequent elections during the remainder of his days twenty-three years. He left a wife and three children.

Fryberg, John P. Died in Seattle, April 12th, aged 77 years. He came to Puget Sound in 1857, and here dwelt the remainder of his life. He left a son and two daughters.

Frye, George F. Born in Germany, Jan. 15th, 1833; died in Seattle, May 2d, aged 79 years. When 1 6 years of age he came to America, and three years later (1852) traveled overland from Missouri to Oregon. The following year he moved to Seattle, and remained there 59 years, to the end of his days. In 1 860 he and Louise Catherine Denny were married, she and four daughters surviving him. Mr. Frye was engaged in various occupations as steam boating, farming, conducting a meat shop, a grocery, hotel, etc. He built several dwellings, and three of the finest hotel buildings in his home city the Stevens, the Barker and the Frye.

Geddis, S. R. Died at Lebanon, Oregon, Feb. 2d, aged 74 years. He came to Oregon in 1846, served in the Indian war of 1855, settled at Ellensburg, in Kittitas County, in 1869, where he made his home, and where three of his seven surviving children yet live.

Hadlock, Samuel. Born in New Hampshire in 1829; died in the same state, Sept. 18th, aged 83 years. He came to California in 1852, where for a number of years he was engaged in milling, steam boating and somewhat similar lines of trade. In 1 868, as one of five partners, he located the first steam sawmill in Tacoma, and he had charge of the construction. Later he acquired a large body of land on Port Townsend Bay, where the town of Hadlock is now. He was a widower, with one son. At the time of his death he was visiting his native state, and was in a sanitarium at Nashua.

Hastings, Oregon Columbus. Born in Illinois in 1846; died in Victoria, B. C, Aug. 2d, aged 66 years. Mr. H. was a brother of Mrs. Littlefield, and, of course, son of Mr. and Mrs. L. B. Hastings. He was an infant when the parents crossed the plains. With them he came to Port Townsend in 1 851. He spent the remainder of his life in that town and Victoria, in the latter city conducting a photograph gallery for many years. The Hastings family is permanently and honorably connected with the history of Puget Sound.

Jackson, Samuel. Born at Plymouth, Massachusetts, Nov. I 7th, 1832; died at Seattle, Oct. 16th, aged 80 years. Captain Jackson went to sea as a boy, and in a few years had been pretty well over the globe. In the early 1850s he headed for the Pacific, but was wrecked on the way. Not long detained, he was soon in the California gold mines, and afterwards in those of British Columbia. In 1 859 he came to Puget Sound. From that time on his principal occupation was steam boating, he navigating and managing many of the early day craft. When not employed on steamboats, he was engaged in pile driving, wharf building, shin-building, invariably something on or near the water. He left a wife and daughter.

Jarman, William. Born in England; died at Ferndale, Whatcom County, June 11th, aged 92 years. He came to Puget Sound in 1 846 on one of the ships of the Hudson Bay Company, and here spent the remainder of his life.

Kanavan, Thomas. Died in Pierce County, Feb. 4th, aged 86 years. He came from Ireland in 1852, locating the following year in or near the present city of Tacoma. He was a volunteer in the Indian war of 1855-56. He left a wife, four sons and four daughters.

Littlefield, Maria C. Hastings. Born in Portland, Oregon, Dec. 28th, 1850; died at Port Townsend, July 1st, aged 62 years. Mrs. Littlefield was the daughter of Loren Brown and Lucinda Bingham Hastings, who came from Vermont first and Illinois later, settling at Portland, where they lived four years, beginning in 1847. In 1851, with the Pettygrove family, they removed to Port Townsend, where the men took land claims, Mrs. Hastings and her young daughter Maria, being the two first whites of their sex there to place foot. In 1869 Miss Hastings married David M. Littlefield. She was survived by her husband, three daughters and four grandchildren.

Longmire, Virinda. Died at North Yakima, Feb. 1 2th, aged 82 years. She came to Washington Territory in 1853, with her husband, James Longmire. They settled at Yelm, in Thurston County. The famous Longmire Springs, on Mount Rainier, were discovered and acquired by Mr. Longmire. Mrs. Longmire left nine children, and it is said 159 other descendants.

McGowan, Patrick J. Born March 17th, 1817, in Ireland; died Sept. 29th, in the town of McGowan, Washington, aged 95 years. In 1842 he came to New York, in 1849 to California, and in 1850 to Oregon. After three years in Portland he removed to Washington territory, on the Columbia River near its mouth. He, at an early day, engaged in the salmon fishery, salting and barreling the fish, later erecting several canneries at different points. He had a wife, five sons and two daughters. For sixty-two years he was a business man of prominence and wealth in this state.

Miller, Margaret. Died in Seattle, January 14th, aged 85 years. She came from Maine in 1857, to Washington Territory. She, then Miss McElroy, was soon married to Amasa S. Miller, who had come from Maine to California in 1849 and to Washington in 1853. Their long married life was spent wholly in Port Gamble and Seattle. Mr. Miller died several years ago. Mrs. Miller left six grandchildren.

Miller, Rachel C. Died in Clarke County, January 26, aged 94 years. She was an Oregon immigrant of 1850. She was born at Jackson, in Virginia. She is survived by five children, all residents of Oregon and Washington.

Rader, Solomon. Died at Medford, Oregon Dec. 2d, aged 85 years. He came to the Pacific by the overland route in 1852. He mined for gold in California and Oregon, fought in two Indian wars, and finally settled in Walla Walla. He left a wife and one son.

Schnebley, F. Dorsey. Born in Maryland in 1 832; died at EIlensburg, Nov. 1 1th, aged 80 years. In 1854 he came by way of Nicaragua to California. After a few years he came north, and for a time made his home in Columbia County, Washington. In 1872 he moved to Kittitas County, then Yakima, where he remained. He was county sheriff four years. Eight years he owned and published the Ellensburg Localizer, a paper that was established by D. J. Schnebley, who for a time published the Oregon Spectator, the first newspaper on the Pacific Coast. "Uncle Dorse's" relatives are numerous in this state.

Sherwood, S. F. Born in New York state, Dec. 1 6th, 1832; died in Kitsap County, Oct. 11th, aged 80 years. He came to San Francisco in 1853, to Fraser River in 1858, and to Washington territory in 1861. He was a soldier in the Mexican war. Fifty years ago he was auditor of Skamania County, but for forty years dwelt in Stevens County.

Smalley, Martha Ann. Born in Missouri, Nov. 23d, 1835; died at Rocky Point, Washington, June 17th, aged 77 years. In 1849 she crossed the continent with her parents named Magan to California. In 1850 she married James A. Smalley, and in 1852 they settled at Portland, Oregon. In 1857 they went back to Missouri, from which they again came west in 1865, finally locating in Washington territory. A husband, son and six married daughters were left.

Smith, James. Died at Oakville, Chehalis County, March 12th, aged 88 years. He was born in New York, but came to Washington, around Cape Horn, in 1854. He became an extensive land owner, having a tract of one thousand acres in Chehalis valley. Upon this tract was built a blockhouse for protection of the settlers during the Indian war, from which circumstance he acquired the name of "Blockhouse Smith." A widow, son and daughter were left.

Stockand, Mrs. P. R. Born in Scotland, June 1 2th, 1 832; died at Port Townsend, Oct. 28th, aged 80 years. She left home in 1859 for Victoria, B. C, by way of Cape Horn, arriving Jan. 14th, 1860. A few weeks later she came over to Port Townsend, where she lived with her family thereafter. She was survived by a husband and six children, all residents of Seattle, Yakima, Bellingham and Port Townsend.

Stephens, William. Died at Monroe, Snohomish County, March 13th, aged 68 years. He came to Oregon in 1852 and from there to Washington thirty-five years later, locating at Marysville. A widow and seven children survive him.

Sullivan, Michael J. Born in Massachusetts; died in Skagit County, Nov. 18th, aged 82 years. He came to the Pacific in the rush to the California gold mines, working his way on a steamer. In 1866 he began farming on the Swinomish Flats, near LaConner, where his sagacity and industry were well rewarded. He left a wife.

Whitesell, William Henry. Born in one of the eastern states in 1 841; died at Orting, Sept. 8, he being struck by a Northern Pacific train while walking on the track. He came with his parents, brothers and sisters to Pierce County in 1854, and from that time on his home was in the Puyallup valley. He was unmarried; his nearest relatives left being three brothers and five sisters, all residents of Pierce County.
Williams, Robert. Born in Wales, May 13, 1834; died at Vancouver, Washington, Dec. 9th, aged 79 years. He came to America in 1850, and in 1855 came to the Pacific Coast as a private soldier in the Fourth U. S. Infantry. His company, under Capt. Wallen, was sent to Vancouver, from which point Williams was sent with others to Yakima in the Major Rains expedition, to fight the Indians. In 1856 he was in the fight at the Cascades. In 1861 he enlisted again to fight dissension, and served with distinction, becoming a captain by several promotions. In 1877 he located at Vancouver, where he again became connected with the army, serving in the ordnance branch until his retirement in 1 896. Capt. Williams married a woman named Turnbull in Scotland in 1860.

Willson, Eliza Kirkland. Born in 1848; died in Pierce County, Nov. 10th, aged 64 years. She was the daughter of Mr. and Mrs. Moses Kirkland, who came to King County in 1853, and settled on a farm in White river valley. In the Indian war that prevailed in 1855-56 the Kirkland live stock, crops and improvements were destroyed, his claim for damages on that account amounting to $2,667. Mr. Kirkland enlisted for the war, serving first in the Capt. Hewitt Company of Seattle, and afterward in the Capt. Lander Company. Subsequently the family removed to other parts of the territory. In 1864 Eliza was married to Edward A. Willson, one of the prominent men of Mason County. He came to Oregon in early days, and participated in one of the first Indian troubles there, in which he was so wounded that he never fully recovered. He has long been dead. They had several children.

Wooten, Shadrach. Born in Florida, died on Cypress Island in January, aged 78 years. He came to Puget Sound in 1851. He left a wife and six children.

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Source: The Washington Historical Quarterly, Volume VII., January, 1916

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