Location: Brownsville Oregon

Biography of Hon. Zenas Ferry Moody

HON. Z.F. MOODY. – Zenas Ferry Moody, ex-Governor of the State of Oregon, was born on the 27th of May, 1832, in Granby, Massachusetts. His father was Major Thomas H. Moody. His mother was Hannah M. Ferry, an aunt of ex-Senator T.W. Ferry, of Michigan, formerly vice-president of the United States. Governor Moody comes of good old New England Revolutionary stock, his grandfather, Gideon Moody, having borne arms as a soldier during the Revolutionary war. He has proved himself worthy of his lineage; and the principles which he imbibed on New England soil have been the guide of his whole subsequent life. The sturdy virtues of that stock are too well known to require comment; they have become historical. The public men of New England have led the van in every reform, and have taken a most prominent part in molding all of that history of which the American people are most proud. New England ideas have been infused throughout the whole of our national life; and we have come to expect from men of New England ancestry those sturdy qualities which have contributed so largely to our happiness and prosperity as a people. Mr. Moody’s childhood was spent in Granby. January, 1848, he removed to Chicopee, Massachusetts, where he remained the ensuing three years. On the 14th of March, 1851, he sailed from New York to Oregon by...

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Biography of Charles W. Shaff, M. D.

Holding marked prestige as a member of the medical profession of Idaho is Dr. Charles W. Shaff, of Lewiston, now the honored president of the State Medical Association. In the learned professions advancement depends upon the man, his talents, his skill and his ambition. The physician’s power is especially his own; not by purchase, by gift or by influence can he gain it. He must commence at the very beginning, learn the very rudiments of medicine and surgery, continually add to this knowledge by close study and earnest application, and gain reputation by merit. If he would gain the highest prominence it must come as the result of superior skill, knowledge and ability, which qualifications are possessed in an eminent degree by Dr. Shaff. He is known throughout the state as one of the most eminent members of the profession in Idaho, and his opinions are widely received as authority. The life history of such a man is always of profit as well as interest. The Doctor has spent his entire life on the Pacific coast, his birth having occurred in Eldorado County, California, July 6, 1855. During the colonial history of New York his ancestors, natives of Germany, located in the Empire state, and representatives of the family loyally served their country in the Revolutionary war and in the war of 1812. The Doctor’s father, Joseph Shaff, was...

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McDowell, Nora Alice Thompson Mrs. – Obituary

North Powder, Union County, Oregon Nora Alice McDowell, 77, of North Powder, died May 1, 1996, at the North Powder Ponderosa Adult Foster Home. Her graveside funeral will be Saturday at 1 p.m. in the Marion/Friends Cemetery at Marion , Oregon. Rev. E.E. Blackmon of the Parkrose Deliverance Tabernacle of Portland will officiate. Vault interment will follow. Visitations will be today until 4 p.m. at the Coles-Strommer-Monroe Funeral Home, 1950 Place St. in Baker City. Mrs. McDowell was born April 3, 1919, in Marian, Oregon, the daughter of Fredrick and Milly Slyter Thompson. She spent her childhood and attended schools in Eugene, graduating from high school there. On April 3, 1939, she was united in marriage to James A. McDowell in Vancouver, Washington. He preceded her in death in July 1995. The couple lived for a time in Humboldt County, California, and in Brownsville, Oregon. They moved to North Powder in 1986 and bought property and a building in 1988 that they converted into the Bethel Full Gospel Church. Mrs. McDowell was active in the Assemblies of God and the Pentecostal Churches, and a member of the Full Gospel Fellowship. She enjoyed being a Sunday School teacher and loved to garden. She will be greatly missed. Mrs. McDowell is survived by her two children, Milly Simonsen of Portland, and John McDowell of the San Francisco area; a sister, Eleanor...

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Bilyeu, Robert Dean – Obituary

Funeral services for Robert Dean Bilyeu, 88, of 50 D St. Halsey, were held Monday at the Halsey Methodist Church with burial following at Pine Grove Cemetery. Fisher Funeral Home of Albany was in charge of arrangements. [Died July 21, 1983] Born Feb. 25, 1895, at Bilyeu Den, Mr. Bilyeu had lived all of his life in the Brownsville and Halsey areas. He was a farmer. Mr. Bilyeu also was a police marshal in Halsey before his retirement. He served in the U.S. Army during World War I and was a member of the Sweet Home Post of Veterans of Foreign Wars. He married Violet V. Carver on April 7, 1943, at Eugene. She died in 1968. Survivors include a daughter, Barbara Roth, Brownsville, and a sister, Eola Dell Falk. [Obit cut off] Democrat Herald, July 26, 1983 Contributed by: Shelli...

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Lee, Ruthella Chaplin – Obituary

Ruthella Chaplin Lee, 95, died Wednesday, May 10 [1989], in Providence Hospital in Centralia. She was born Oct. 3, 1893, in Brownsville, Ore., and was the daughter of Ralph and Sarah [Coshow] Chaplin. Lee attended Bellingham Normal School and was a teacher in the Chehalis School District until her marriage in 1917 to Virgin R. Lee. He died in 1986. She was a life member of the Daughters of the American Revolution and a long-time member of the St. Helen’s Club and the Pioneers of Washington. Surviving are a son, William R. “Bill” Lee of Chehalis; three granddaughters; and three great grandchildren. Contributed by: Shelli...

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Bilyeu, Archie M. – Obituary

Archie M. Bilyeu, retired auto dealer and longtime Portland resident, died Monday [November 6] at 118 Mercury St., Gladstone, where he had made his home since August. He was 78. Born May 3, 1894 in Brownsville, Ore., he had lived in Portland since the early 1920s and at one time was a Kaiser-Frazer dealer there. He was a member of Willamette Lodge No. 2, AF & AM. Survivors include his wife, Marguerite; two sons, Wally, Chula Vista, Cal.; Martin, Portland; a brother, Floyd, and a sister, Gertrude Christopherson, both Hemet, Cal.; and two grandchildren. Services will be held Thursday at 10:30 a.m. in Holman-Hankins Chapel, with graveside services at 2:30 in the afternoon at Franklin Butte Cemetery in Scio. Friends may contribute to the Oregon Heart Fund in lieu of flowers. Enterprise Courier, November 7, 1972 Contributed by: Shelli...

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Biographical Sketch of C. L. Andrews

C.L. ANDREWS. – The present county clerk of Morrow county was born in Ashtabula county, Ohio, October, 1862. He came with his parents to Oregon in 1864, via the Isthmus, and lost his father by death soon after reaching the Pacific Ocean, and saw him buried from the ship in a watery grave. He located with the family near Brownsville, and here received his education, completing the same at Philomath College. He made his home near Brownsville until 1882. In that year he went over to Seattle, where he accepted a position as mailing clerk, filing it eight months. In 1883, he came to Heppner, and has made this enterprising place his permanent home. In 1886, he was elected clerk of the county, and was re-elected to this position in 1888, at the instance and by the support of the Republican party. Mr. Andrews is one of the men of growing influence in the Inland Empire; and it is to him and such as he that his community will look for its development and further...

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Biography of Joseph L. Carter

JOSEPH L. CARTER. – This prominent educator of Eastern Oregon was born at the old Methodist Episcopal Mission, near Salem, January 22, 1845. He is the son of David Carter, who fifty years ago was a merchant in the various cities and states of South America, and in 1840 came via the Sandwich Islands to the then unclaimed Oregon, marrying Miss Orpha Lankton, of the mission party of the bark Lausanne, and settling on Mill creek near Salem, and also living at The Dalles, passing much time in the mines of California and becoming prominent upon our coast in the early days. After the death of his father, in 1854, Joseph removed with his mother to Brownsville, and from that place to Lebanon. He laid to rest this beloved parent in 1873, cherishing her memory not only as a devoted mother, but as a friend of the lost and ignorant Indians, and of our rising young state, and as a servant of God, – one whom all Oregon should now honor in her grave. Much of the early life of the young man was passed in study; and he graduated from the Willamette University in 1868. The information which he received, and the ideas with which his own mind was fertilized, he strove to disseminate, and entered immediately into the educational field as teacher. Twelve years he was thus...

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Biography of Hugh L. Brown

HUGH L. BROWN. – There is usually something distinctive and characteristic about one who leaves the impress of his name upon any region or locality. This we find to be the case with reference to the pioneer whose name appears above, and for whom was named the well-known city of Brownsville. Hugh Leeper Brown was born in Knox county, Tennessee, January 24, 1810. He lived in Knox county until 1838, when with his little family, then consisting of his wife and three children, he emigrated to Missouri, settling in Platte county. He remained there until the spring of 1846, when falling in with that stream of pioneers who had turned their faces towards the settling sun, he again pulled up stakes, and taking the loved ones started forth with an ox-team and crossed the plains, reaching the then territory of Oregon in the autumn, having occupied six months in the journey. It was by the Barlow Road that he entered the Willamette valley. From Oregon City he set out with Alexander Kirk, now deceased, and James Blakely, who still lives at Brownsville, in search of a location for a home. The best of the land was before them; and they examined it carefully, but were not fully satisfied, until passing the Calapooia, upon the majestic plain of the Upper Willamette, they found all that the heart could wish, and...

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Biographical Sketch of William M. Blakeley

WILLIAM M. BLAKELEY. – The subject of this sketch, a prominent citizen of the rapidly developing upper country, was born in Missouri in 1840. In 1846 he crossed the plains with his father, who located near the present site of Brownsville, Linn county, Oregon, where he still resides. Mr. Blakely was here favored with the educational advantages afforded by the public school, and assisted his father on the farm until 1860, when he moved to a point near the present site of Prescott, on the lovely Touchet river, in Washington Territory. In the spring of 1861 he tried his fortune in the Oro Fino mines in Idaho, and returned to the home of his father at Brownsville in the autumn. In 1862 he made an expedition to the Powder river mines, returning home for the winter. He was engaged in the cattle business from 1863 to 1864. In the latter year he disposed of his herds, and entered upon substantial life, marrying Miss Margaret Baird. In 1868 he moved to his present location near Adams, in Umatilla county, Oregon, where he is largely interested in...

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Biography of W. F. Courtney

W.F. COURTNEY. – This veteran among the Indian fighters and earlier pioneers was born in Illinois in 1832. At the age of thirteen, he crossed the plains with his parents in 1845. They reached The Dalles during the latter part of October of the same year; but before proceeding down the river they had to construct a flat boat as a means of navigation. This was attended with considerable difficulty, as there were no lumber mills in the country, and ever plank had to be whipsawed. The passage from The Dalles to the Upper Cascades was made without any event of notice. Not so with the balance of the trip; for, after the women, children and household goods were removed, an attempt was made to run the rapids, which resulted in the wreckage of their boat on the rocks. From the Lower Cascades they came to Clackamas Rapids, below Oregon City in a sailing craft called the Calapooia. After a short stay at Oregon City, a permanent home was made near Brownsville. Like all other pioneers of the valley, the Courtney family were obliged to go to Oregon City for supplies. In July, 1847, the father started there for flour; but, when near Clackamas Rapids, he was instantly killed by a falling tree. This left young Courtney to rely on his own resources in the matter of gaining a...

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Biography of Oliver P. Coshaw

OLIVER P. COSHAW. – This leading citizen of Brownsville, for many years a merchant of that place, was born July 4, 1831, at Connorsville, Indiana. His parents, who were characteristically thriving and agreeable people of French extraction, went to Iowa in 1843. After leaving school, the young Oliver was employed in a store as salesman, clerk or book-keeper, and there laid the foundation of knowledge and experience which has so well served him in his later years. In April, 1851, he engaged to drive an ox-team to Oregon for Honorable R.B. Cochrane, long known in our state and now, as for many years, a substantial citizen of Eugene. In return for his services, he received his board and passage and many incidental advantages. The first home was made and a claim taken near Brownsville, where Mr. William Cochrane had been living since 1849. Mr. Coshaw occupied himself with such work as was to be obtained in that sparse community, and in work on his claim, and September 23, 1853, was ready to bring to his new home as his bride, Miss Sarah, the daughter of William Cochrane. This was their home until the title to their claim was perfected. During the Indian trouble, he was one of the volunteers belonging to Captain Keeney’s company. He relates with great good humor the many shift and resort of the soldiers who...

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Biography of Hon. Edward Hirsch

HON. EDWARD HIRSCH. – Someone has written, “There’s a divinity that shapes our ends, rough hew them as we may;” and the subject of this sketch is a living exemplification of it. When, away back in “the fifties,” he landed a poor boy in the city of New York, among strangers in a strange land, and looked about him for honest employment in any capacity, how little he dreamed that as years passed by he would hold the purse-strings for the then almost unknown territory of Oregon, when a few years later she should lay aside her swaddling clothes and emerge into the maidenhood of a young and prosperous commonwealth. Such has been his career, however; and no man in the state stands higher in the estimation of the people than does Honorable Edward Hirsch, ex-State Treasurer. He was born at Wurtemberg, Germany, May 3, 1836, and came to America in 1855. Landing in New York City, he at once sought employment. Proving unsuccessful, however, he went over into the neighboring State of Pennsylvania, and secured a clerkship in a store in a little town in Mercer county, at the princely salary of seventy-five dollars per annum. He remained there for several months, and then went down into the State of Georgia, where he remained nearly two years, the greater part of the time at Macon. He became thoroughly...

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Biography of Charles M. McClure

CHAS. M. McCLURE. – Mr. McClure has taken as active a part as anyone in establishing our state, and was one of the veterans who, as lieutenant, saw the whole war in Southern Oregon. Born in Missouri in 1832, he went to Mexico in 1850, and in 1851 crossed the plains to Oregon, settling near Brownsville on the Calapooia. He soon undertook the toilsome and exciting life of a miner in Northern California and Southern Oregon, and in 1853 assisted the settlers of Rogue river valley in protecting themselves form the Indians, being one of the relief party from Table Rock to help the reconnoitering party who were surrounded on Evans creek. He was also in the hot fight on the same creek in which General Lane was wounded. In 1855 he was on the way with a pack-train from Yreka to Frazer river, when the news of the great outbreak reached him at Salem. Turning about at once, he joined the company of Bailey as second lieutenant, to avenge the death of the captain’s brother, and to save the rest of the Whites. This was the band of Linn and Lane volunteers, and the first to reach the scene, making the trip by forces marches. The details of that campaign are given elsewhere. McClure, however, was in the whole of it. At the place where Captain Bailey was...

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Weber, James S. “Jim” – Obituary

Richland, Oregon James S. “Jim” Weber, 85, died Jan. 1, 2002, at his home in Richland with his family by his side. His funeral will be at 2 p.m. Friday at the Richland Methodist Church. The Rev. Bill Shields will officiate. Interment will be in the Eagle Valley Cemetery at Richland. Jim was born on March 19, 1916, at Brownsville. He was a 1938 graduate of the University of Oregon at Eugene and shortly afterward married Florence Staggs. They moved to Baker County in 1940 and became partners in Staggs and Weber, a prominent cattle and sheep ranch in the Keating area. In 1971, Jim married E. Jay Morrissey. Together they spent almost 20 years in Ontario where he owned Eastern Oregon Properties and engaged in sales and appraisals of ranch properties. He retired and they moved to Richland in 1991. He will be missed by his family and his many friends. Survivors include his wife, E. Jay; his sister, Jean Arnold of Portland; his daughter and son-in-law, Chary and Donn Mires of Baker City; his daughter, Linda Triplett of Baker City; his son and daughter-in-law, James and Clare Weber of Hidden Hills, Calif.; his stepdaughter and son-in-law, Sara Lee and John Seaman of Bellingham, Wash.; his stepson and daughter-in-law, Mike and Janie Morrissey of Keating; nine grandchildren and six great-grandchildren. The family suggests memorial contributions to the Pathway...

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