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The subject if our sketch, Jas. F. Ferguson, has been more active perhaps than any one else in placing the resources of Baker County and its environments before not only Western investors, but those of the far East as well. His shrewd judgment and conservative business methods have won for him an enviable reputation, and his advice on the real estate and mining investments of this section is much sought after. He has been located here as a real estate and insurance broker since 1875 representing sixteen of the leading insurance companies of the world, such as the London. Liverpool and Globe, Royal of Liverpool, Norwich Union and North British and Mercantile, among foreign companies, and the German-American of New York and Fireman’s Fund among home companies. Controlling as he does the leading companies, he writes more insurance than any other agencies combined. He also writes life, accident, plate glass and live stock insurance, attends to collections of rents and so forth.
He handles real estate both city and farm property, also mining property, which his long continued residence here has placed him in a position to know thoroughly. He at present is handling the DeRoo addition, also that of Brattain & McComas, and many other desirable tracts. Mr. Ferguson is a native of New York City, where he was born in 1845. He came to Oregon at a early age with his parents, his father being an early pioneer in the valley, erecting the first mill at the Willamette Falls in 1852. He also built a number of the early crafts which navigated that river such as the steamer Gazelle and others. ln 1858 he moved to the Cascades, accompanied by his family. At the age of sixteen the subject of this sketch went to Portland and began clerking for Hacker Bros, with whom he remained for four years. He then went to Fort Colville Wash. joining his father who had in the meantime began merchandising at that point. In 1868 he came to Baker city and entered into business with E. W. Reynolds. He married Miss Jennie D. Mann, of Barre, Vermont in 1870. His being the first marriage published in the Bed Rock Democrat, which had been in existence about six months at that time. Moving to Inyo county, Cal., a year later, he remained there till 1874, when he returned to Baker City and entered the banking house of Junes W. Virtue. as bookkeeper and cashier, and remained with him until he went out of business.