RICHARD JEFFS. – The subject of this brief sketch was born in Westchester, Westchester county, New York, December 27, 1827, where he was brought up, working on his father’s farm until he was nineteen years of age. He then went to New York City, where he remained for eighteen months.
In February, 1851, he started for California by way of Panama, arriving in San Francisco in March of that year. He started almost immediately for the mines, where he remained until 1858.
During the great gold excitement of 1858-59, on the Frazer river, British Columbia, when thousands of people were rushing to the new El Dorado, Mr. Jeffs, with that spirit of adventure that has always characterized him, made his way to those then celebrated diggins, and remained there actively engaged in mining for about one year. In 1859 he removed to Whatcom, Washington Territory, where he went into the employ of Captain Henry Roder; and it was he who took to marked the first scow-load of lumber from that place. After working in different places until 1862, he purchased a farm of eight hundred acres on the White river, and followed faring until 1882. In that year the Hopgrowers Association was organized; and Mr. Jeffs was elected president of that association, and removed to Snoqualmie, Washington Territory, to manage their large ho ranch, perhaps the largest in the world, a view of which the reader will find in this work.
Mr. Jeffs is one of the sterling business men of the day, noted for his sound judgment in business matters, and for his many sterling qualities of heart and head. The very fact of his having filled the position of justice of the peace in the precinct of Slaughter for over sixteen years, and his having been elected as a member of the territorial convention of Washington for the eighteenth district, is sufficient evidence of his popularity, and of the high esteem in which he is held by the people, marking him as one of the old pioneers, whose advent with others of his kind and stamp into this country heralded the growth and prosperity of the Pacific Northwest.
Mr. Jeffs is a married man and has two sons. He lives in a beautiful home on the Snoqualmie, surrounded by every luxury and comfort, in the enjoyment of a happy and honorable old age, and of the respect and goodwill of all who know him.