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THOMAS K. McCOY. – The gentleman whose name heads this sketch was born March 9, 1827, in Sangamon county, Illinois, and there was reared and educated. On October 12, 1848, he was married to Margaret A. Kendall, who was also born and raised in Sangamon county, the date of her birth being October 4, 1829. The fruits of their union were seven children, three daughters and four sons.
Mr. McCoy came to Oregon in 1851 via the “ox-team route,” and settled in Linn county. The following year his wife joined him in his new home, she having come in 1852 with her parents. In the spring of 1858 they removed to the Walla Walla valley, taking with them a band of cattle. In the fall of that year a claim was located on the Tumalum, now in Umatilla county, Oregon, to which the family removed in the following fall. At that time there were not to exceed half a dozen families within miles of them. Indians, though, were very plentiful, a large camp being located in their immediate vicinity.
Politically speaking, Mr. McCoy was an ardent Republican. Though not an office-seeker, he, however, was appointed county commissioner of Umatilla county upon its organization, it being customary to select the most worthy citizens. While on a visit to his old home in Illinois he took sick, and on February 19, 1887, passed away; and beneath the rods that were the playground of his childhood lie his remains. In his death his widow lost a kind and noble husband, his children an affectionate father, his acquaintances a valuable friend, and Oregon a sterling citizen.