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Biography of Mrs. Eliza Cooke

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MRS. ELIZA COOKE. – All who are acquainted with the estimable lady whose name heads this brief résumé of her life well known that the best eulogy that can be written only illustrates how impossible it is to bear fitting portrayal of the genuine worth of so good and noble a woman. Grandma Cooke has ever been known in her intercourse with others to be generous and unselfish in the highest degree, one of the gentlest of mothers, the most patient of wives, an affectionate friend, and the kindest of neighbors.

Whether meeting with trials incident to a long, tedious and dangerous journey across the plains, enduring the privations of pioneer life, or surrounded thereafter, as she has been, with a competence of life’s comforts, the tenor of her life has run in the same channel, ever manifesting to all about her those qualities which make the good, true woman akin to the angels. She was born in Rensselaer county, New York April 29, 1816. In early Rensselaer county, New York, April 29, 1816. In early life her parents removed to Ohio and located in Erie county. On September 5, 1835, she was married to Edwin N. Cooke, at Oxford, in that state. For a number of years they resided at Sandusky City, when they removed to Fremont, where they remained until their departure for Oregon in the fall of 1850. The health of Mr. Cooke being poor, they journeyed leisurely along, awaiting the approach of spring to commence the tedious journey necessary to be made before reaching the far-off Western home. She was accompanied by her niece, Miss Susan E. Brewster, now Mrs. Charles F. Cooke, of Ellensburgh, Washington, and by her only daughter, Fannie, who subsequently became the wife of Honorable Tomas McF. Patton, a native of Ohio, who was also a member of the expedition, having joined them at Council Bluffs, Iowa.

On the arrival of the family in Oregon, they located at Salem, where they have since resided. In the pioneer days of Oregon, her influence was largely felt in molding the society in which she moved, and in turning the course of events in favor of civilization, education and morality. Although for many years a member of the church, to her creed has been nothing, religion as exemplified in a daily life of good deeds was everything. She lives not for herself but for others. Familiar to all who have visited the capital city is her beautiful residence. Here, surrounded by her grandchildren, great-grandchildren, and a host of war personal friends, she patiently awaits the summons of the Master to enter upon the well-deserved reward of a life without reproach.

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