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Biographical Sketch of I. L. Scammon

Another Chehalis County pioneer is I. L. Scammon, who was born in Maine in 1822, came to California in 1849-50, making the voyage on the 63-ton schooner Little Traveler. In the autumn of 1850 he took passage for the Columbia River, which was passed by mistake, the vessel making Shoalwater bay. Making his way overland to the Columbia, he went to Salem, Oregon, and to the southern mines, but returning to Washington Territory took a donation claim on the Chehalis River, where the old town of Montesano, now known as Wynoochee, grew up about him. He married Miss Lorinda Hopkins in 1844, who rejoined him in Washington Territory in 1859. The first sermon preached in the region of Montesano was delivered by Rev. J. W. Goodell at Scammon’s house, and the second school in the county was on his place, in 1859. The children of this pioneer are: Harriet, married Edward Campbell. George, m. Clara Nye. Cornelia Jane, who died. Eva, who m. I. R. Edwards. Edith, who m. P. B. Briscoe. Elli, who m. Charles H. Finmet, County Surveyor. Norman, who accidentally shot himself when about 17 years of...

Biography of Charles Biles

Charles Biles was born in Warren County, Tennessee, in Aug. 1809, and reared on a farm in North Carolina, removing when 19 years old to Christian County, Kentucky. In 1832 he married, and in 1835 removed to Illinois, soon returning to Hopkins County, Kentucky, where he resided until 1853, when he emigrated to Washington Territory in company with his brother James, their families, and C. B. Baker, Elijah Baker, and William Downing, and their families, being a part of the first direct immigration to the territory, via the wagon road through the Nachess pass. Mr Biles settled upon Grand Mound Prairie in Thurston County, farming, and sometimes preaching as a minister of the Cumberland Presbyterian Church. He died Feb. 26, 1869, leaving two sons (one having died after emigrating) and two daughters, namely, David F., Charles N., Mrs M. Z. Goodell, and Mrs I. B. Ward. David F. Biles was born in Kentucky in 1833, coming with his parents to Washington Territory. In 1851 he took a claim in Thurston County, and in 1855 became a deputy U. S. Surveyor, but the Indian war coming on interrupted work, and he took to soldiering in defense of the settlements, resuming his surveying when peace was restored. From 1838 to 1862 he resided in Cosmopolis, Chehalis County, but then removed to a homestead claim near Elma, on the line of the Satsop railroad to Gray Harbor, where he owns 400 acres of land. He served many years as county surveyor, and some time as school superintendent. He married in 1854 Miss Mary J. Hill, who was a member of the immigration...

Biographical Sketch of Samuel Benn

SAMUEL BENN. – There is a certain keenness amounting almost to prescience which enables a man to locate a successful town. The laws of a city’s development are so peculiar that few are able to make much of the riddle. Nevertheless some seem to know where to locate a townsite, and where to invest in real estate. It is a business instinct. Mr. Benn is one of these persons. He is the founder of Aberdeen. He was born in New York City, and, as a youth, learned the carpenter’s trade. In 1856 he came to San Francisco, and mined and built dams and flumes in Tuolumne county three years. His purpose to return home was changed by reports of the wealth and beauty of Washington Territory, whither he came in 1859, and settled at Milburn on the Chehalis. Here he lived nine years, clearing up a farm, – an arduous but eminently useful job. In 1867 he purchased one hundred and sixty acres of land from the government and some four hundred more from Reuben Redman on the present site of Aberdeen, and in 1884 laid out the city, selling lots and improving the property. For three years subsequently he was occupied with farming, and in conducting the Washingtonian Cannery. He has now, however, retired from business, excepting such as is required by his property interests, which are extensive. His capital of one hundred dollars which he brought into the territory has become a handsome fortune. Mr. Benn was the first sheriff of Chehalis county, and has since held the office of assessor, county commissioner, and member of the...

Biographical Sketch of Hon. Melancthon Z. Goodell

HON. MELANCTHON Z. GOODELL. – The family of which this pioneer is a member has ever been prominent and influential in the Pacific Northwest since its arrival hither. Jothan W. Goodell, the father was a pioneer of Ohio; and it was at Vermilion that Melancthon was born in 1837. In 1850 the family crossed the plains, the eight children being deemed no serious hindrance. A stop-over was made at Salt Lake one winter; and it has been thought that they missed but little a great calamity from Mormon treachery. Reaching Portland in 1851, they made their first home in Polk county, Oregon, but in 1853 removed to Grand Mound, Washington Territory. When the Indian war broke out, young Melancthon enlisted in Captain Hay’s Company, serving ten months. At the dawn of peace following this troublesome period, he leased a farm in Lewis county, and was engaged in agriculture until 1860. His next home was near Elma, where he lived on a farm more than twenty years. In 1883 he occupied his present residence at Montesano, Washington, engaging in business as dealer in lumber and in real estate, being thus employed at present. His public services have been important and various, – two terms as sheriff and two terms as assessor of Chehalis county. In 1882 he held a seat in the legislature, to which he was re-elected in 1884. He is at present mayor of Montesano. He was married in 1858 to Miss Rebecca Byles, a native of Kentucky, but an early resident of Thurston county. They have eight...

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