Bowman, Oliver Purl – Obituary

Purl Bowman prominent pioneer of Umatilla County and well known throughout this section of the state, passed away at St. Anthony’s Hospital Saturday, August 5 [1939] at 4:15 p.m., after an illness of three weeks.

Mr. Bowman was born February 15, 1862, at Osceola, Ia. and when a baby of only six weeks left St. Louis, Mo., with his parents for the west. His family had resided at Osceola before starting the long trek across the plains in a train of 105 wagons.

The Bowman’s arrived in Umatilla County on October 17, 1862, just two days more than eight months after Purl’s birth. They settled at Lower Birch Creek, living there for ten years before moving to Pendleton. At the age of 14 years, he started freighting with his father, later running sheep for a few years. When 18 years old, he began farming with Jim Jacobs on the old Chief Peo place on Tutuilla and a short time later bought out Mr. Jacob’s interests.

Mr. Bowman was very successful as a farmer and wool grower, expanding his holdings extensively. About 1900 he purchased the lot and building which was then known as the old Bowman House. It was burned to the ground a few years after that and then replaced by the present brick building, known as the Bowman Hotel. [Hotel still stands.]

Up to his last illness, Mr. Bowman was active in all his business affairs, and took a keen and lively interest in community life. He was honored at a family reunion at the home place on Tutuilla on the occasion of his 77th birthday anniversary with 43 present.

Mr. Bowman had a very wide circle of friends and his death came as a sad shock to them and to the community. During his life he had aided many needy families and was widely respected and admired.

Mr. Bowman was married to Miss Eva Stickler in April, 1891. Mrs. Bowman passed away August 31, 1930. Ten children were born to this union and eight of them survive, all residing in Pendleton. They are Roy Bowman, Mrs. Florence Windsor, Oscar Bowman, Hugh Bowman, Mrs. Al Moser, Kenneth Bowman, Mrs. John Crow, and Robert Bowman. He also leave 23 grandchildren and one great grandchild, a brother, Frank Bowman of Portland, Ore., and a sister, Mrs. Bertha Turner of Pendleton.

Funeral services will be held at Folsom’s at 2:30 o’clock, Tuesday, August 8 [Interment at Olney Cemetery]. Pallbearers are as follows: Active-Roy Raley, Frank Gritman, Robert Goad, Barney Anderson, Bob Fletcher and Earl Gillanders. Honorary-Frank Frazier, Fred Schnelter, Levi Eldridge, R. F. Kirkpatrick, J. B. Perry, Henry Schultz and Isaac McDermid.

Contributed by: Shelli Steedman

MLA Source Citation: United States Obituaries. Web. 26 January 2015. - Last updated on Jul 20th, 2012

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