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Biography of Adna C. Craig
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ADNA C. CRAIG. Deceased. – Among the prominent citizens of Union county stands the gentleman whose name initiates this paragraph, and we are constrained because of his real merit and worth, and because of his activities in advancing the welfare of this county, to grant him this memoir in the history of the county where he wrought so faithfully. In pioneer life he was a leader in many sections, and the rugged life of the frontiersman was his to pass through for many years, and his vigor and energy led the way into many scenes where others would only follow. Intimately acquainted with every phase of the existence of those who opened the country for their fellows to follow. Mr. Craig always manifested that same steady nerve in danger, fortitude and endurance in hardships, and ability and keen foresight in the business world.
Our subject was born in Ohio, on October 14, 1821, being the son of James and Margaret Craig. He early learned the brick mason’s trade, and wrought at the same until the memorable year of 1849, when he joined the exodus for the golden west, and landing in Redbluff, California, after a weary journey across the plains, he at once set to mining. As early as 1861, he was in the Florence and Oro Fino camps, being among the very first ones to step foot on that ground. After some time spent in these various camps and the adjacent country, he came to the Grande Ronde valley and engaged in packing from Umatilla landing to the different mines in the Boise Basin.
In 1871, Mr. Craig married Mrs. Amelia Rice, widow of Matthew Rice, a pioneer of Union county, the wedding occurring on December 9. Mrs. Craig’s parents, Abner and Lydia Drumm, came to the Willamette valley in 1847, being among the earliest pioneers of that section. After his marriage, Mr. Craig bought one hundred and eighty-six acres of school land in Union county and devoted his attention to general farming and stock-raising. In 1884, when the railroad was built, he erected the Depot Hotel, and there gave his attention to entertaining the traveling public. He was a genial host and his house was well and favorably known to all who traveled in this section. In the political realm he was both active and prominent, and the whole force of his strength was always on the side of stanch principles. In 1866, he was elected to the office of sheriff of Union county, and in those days of early outlaws, the holding of that office meant much, and so well did he discharge his duties there incumbent upon him that he was again replaced by the appreciative people of the county in the same position, holding it until 1870. For eight years he discharged the duties of county judge, and also for two terms he was county assessor, in all of which public service he was both efficient and faithful, fully satisfying a constituency both discriminating and enlightened. Fraternally Mr. Craig was a member of the Masonic Lodge of Lagrande. On November 24, 1900, Mr. Craig, after a long life of varied activity and filled with good deeds of uprightness, was called to the realities of another world, and his demise was universally mourned. His widow is continuing the operation of the hotel where they lived, and she is the recipient of a good patronage, having those qualities that make one successful in conducting a comfortable and up-to-date hostelry, which the Depot Hotel is in every respect, and it has found favor with the public in general.
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