Location: Corvallis Oregon

Biographical Sketch of Mrs. Martha Burnett

MRS. MARTHA BURNETT.- The subject of this biography was born September 28, 1838, in Franklin county, Missouri, and is the fourth child and oldest daughter of Roland and Elizabeth Hinton. Her parents emigrated to Oregon in 1846, and located their Donation claim in the southern part of Benton county, near Monroe. In her twenty-first year, 1859, she was married, on June 12th, to Honorable John Burnett. They took up their residence in Corvallis, where Judge Burnett entered into the practice of law, and prospered in the practice of his profession. There is a vast difference in the Oregon of 1846 and the Oregon of 1889; and Mrs. Burnett has experienced all the rigors of pioneer life from the time she was a child of tender age until the march of civilization westward took its way. She is now in her fifty-first year, and is surrounded by her family of fine children, and all the comforts which a beautiful home with peace and prosperity can give. She has reached the palm trees and wells of sweet water after a brave and uncomplaining journey through the arid sands of the desert. She has been blessed with seven children, five of whom are living. They are Alice, Ida, Mattie, Brady and...

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Biography of Hon. John Burnett

HON. JOHN BURNETT. – Among the prominent self-made men of Oregon is the subject of this sketch. He was born in Pike county, Missouri, on the 4th of July, 1831. He lost his father at the age of fifteen, and was turned out in the world to fight his way as best he might. He first engaged as an errand boy in a store, but, becoming tired of the confinement, at the end of a year hired out to work on a flat-boat on the Mississippi, boating wood to St. Louis. His early education was obtained in the common schools of the country; and, though his opportunities were limited, he laid the foundation upon which he, in after life, built a sound practical education. In the spring of 1849, there being great excitement about the gold discoveries in California and a general rush to the mines, he accepted an outfit form a relative, and though under eighteen years old started “the plains across” to seek his fortune in the new El Dorado. He arrived in Sacramento on the 10th of September with just one five-franc piece in his pocket. During the greater part of the time from that date on he was engaged in mining and dealing in cattle, until the spring of 1858, when he came to Oregon and settled in Benton county, where he has resided since....

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Biography of Major James Bruce

MAJOR JAMES BRUCE. – Major Bruce is one of our citizens who needs no introduction to the people of the Northwest; since he is known personally, not only to all the old pioneers, but to most of the second generation of the toilers of Oregon. He was born November 3, 1827, in Harrison county, Indiana, and at the age of ten moved with his parents to Quincy, Illinois. At twenty he began a border career, going to Texas, making many excursions in that then unsettled region, and at Cross Timbers joined Major Johnson’s rangers. He accompanied these troopers upon their expeditions to punish marauders, or to recover the stock which were perpetually stampeded and run off by the Indians. In one of these ventures he was engaged with his company in a fight with three hundred of the savages, whose rapid movements, impetuous charges, and ability to suddenly concentrate, or to miraculously disappear and reappear, seemed to multiply their number to about one thousand. Here the Major first saw their maneuvers and astonishing feats, such as riding concealed on one side of their horses. In 1849 he returned to his home in Illinois, and in the spring of 1850 was ready to go to the mines of California, – a trip even more eventful than that to Texas. He performed the long journey in the summer, using ox-teams as...

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Biography of Col. John Colgate Bell

COL. JOHN COLGATE BELL. – Colonel Bell, enjoying a wide reputation from Southern Oregon to Idaho, and back again to the Pacific seashore throughout the state in which he has successively lived and made a multitude of personal acquaintances, merits a special recognition on account of his public services in official relations and in the early Indian wars of Southern Oregon. He was born at Sterling, Kentucky, February 24, 1814. His parents were from Virginia; and among his ancestors were those distinguished in the early history of the nation, his father having served with General Harrison in the war of 1812. The young man received his education at the Mount Sterling Academy, and began business at his native town in the dry-goods store of David Herren. In 1834, he began his western career by removing with his father to Missouri, engaging with him in mercantile business at Clarksville, Pike county. Eight years later he entered into business on his own account at Weston, and in 1845 was married to Miss Sarah E., daughter of General Thompson Ward, of honorable fame in the Mexican war. In 1847 he was engaged with the General in organizing the regiments of Donovan and Price and the battalion of Major Powell sent to new Fort Kearney on the plains for the protection of emigrants. It was in these operations that he received his military...

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Biography of Hon. James Abner Bennett

HON. JAMES ABNER BENNETT. – Our subject was born in Bracken county, Kentucky, on March 17,1808. His birthplace was a farm; and here he remained with his parents until 1830, when he moved to Boone county. He resided here for three years, and then removed to Jackson county, Missouri, near the town of Independence, and in 1839 again removed to Platt county. The following year, 1840, he was married to Miss Louisa E.R. Bane, of Weston, Missouri. Here Mr. Bennett remained, following blacksmithing and conducting a livery stable. He also acted as justice of the peace until the year 1842. There also was a son born to them, John R. Bennett. Mr. and Mrs. Bennett moved from here to Jackson county, Missouri, where they lived until 1850, in the meanwhile suffering the loss of their son, who died April 18,1848. In 1849 Mr. Bennett came on a prospecting tour to California. On his return, Mrs. Bennett made preparations and started with him for Oregon, traveling with ox-teams in company with some thirty other families, Judge Bennett being elected captain of the train. They started on May 9th, and after a wearisome journey of five months’ duration reached Oregon on October 2, 1850. They at once located on their beautiful farm near Corvallis; and, the settlers soon recognizing true worth, he was elected a senator in the territorial legislature from...

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Biography of J. R. Bayley, M.D.

J.R. BAYLEY, M.D. – Doctor Bayley, to whom has fallen an unusual portion of public labor and honor, was born in Springfield, Ohio, in 1820. His mother dying, he was cared for by his grandmother, through whose liberality he received an ample education. In 1839 he moved to Clay county, Missouri, but two years later returned to Ohio, and in 1847 began the study of medicine in South Charleston with Doctors Skinner and Steele. He also attended the medical school at Cleveland in 1849, and the next year studied at the Ohio Medical College of Cincinnati. Upon graduating from this institution in 1851, he returned to South Charleston, practicing medicine, and a year later continued his profession at Louisburg. He was married in Xenia in 1852 to Miss Elizabeth Harpole, and remained in Louisburg until the autumn of 1854. In this year he prepared to cross the continent to Oregon, and reached our state in May, 1855, settling at Lafayette and practicing his profession. Besides his regular work, he was here engaged in political labors, being elected councilman for the counties of Yamhill and Clatsop to serve in the territorial legislature in 1856. He resigned his seat, however, in 1857, and moved to Corvallis, where he practiced medicine for many years. Here also political preferment was bestowed; and he was elected judge of Benton county. In 1864 he was...

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Biography of J. B. Congle

J.B. CONGLE. – Mr. Congle was one of the men of wealth who contributed largely to the early growth and prosperity of our state, and especially of Portland. He was born December 9, 1817, in Chester county, Pennsylvania. In the year 1832 he went to Philadelphia to learn the harness and saddlery trade, and in the spring of 1838 removed to Virginia, thence to Missouri, and in the year 1841 was at Lafayette, Indiana, where he resided ten years thereafter. On May 21, 1844, he was married to Miss Ellen H. Gray, of the place last named. He came as an argonaut to California in 1849, and returned to years later to his home in Indiana. In 1853 he came to Oregon and located at Corvallis, then known as Marysville, and esteemed the head of permanent navigation. Here he lived eight years, and was the first mayor of the city. In 1857 he was elected sheriff of Benton county, but resigned the position after three months. In 1861 he removed to Portland, and made that city his residence until his death. Positions of trust and honor he was frequently called upon to fill, and served the public faithfully. He was elected councilman of the second ward in 1870, and in 1872 was chosen representative to the state legislature from Multnomah county. He became a member of the Masonic order...

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Mehlhorn, Dale – Obituary

Dale Mehlhorn, 72, of Hood River died April 24, 2003 at Providence Hood River Memorial Hospital. A memorial service will be scheduled later. In lieu of flowers, Dale would have appreciated your donation to your school sports program. Dale was born Nov. 2, 1930, at Halfway to Audrey and Clyde Mehlhorn. He attended school at Halfway where he played football, basketball, baseball and ran track. He married Jean Smith in 1948. They moved to Corvallis where Dale attended and graduated from Oregon State University. Dale and Jean made their home in Baker County with their two sons. Dale acted as coach and fan throughout his boys’ sports careers and was instrumental in starting the Little League program in Baker City. Dale was an avid fly fisherman and hunter all of his life. Golf, gardening and travel kept him busy and active in his later years. He retired as manager of Farm Credit Services in 1993. He and Jean moved to Hood River in 2000. He was preceded in death by his parents and a son, Fred Mehlhorn. Survivors include his wife of 54 years, Jean; a son, Ed, and his wife, Jana Mehlhorn; grandchildren, Ragan McBeth, Sara Mehlhorn, Pam Kelly and Christopher Mehlhorn; two great-grandchildren; and lifelong friends, Roger Rode, Dean Miller, Forrest Miller, Galen Wilson, Fred Smith, Bud Smith and many other friends and relatives who will miss...

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Biography of Col. William Williams Chapman

COL. W.W. CHAPMAN. – It has frequently been remarked, that while many men of great fame, and a deservedly wide reputation, cannot lay their finger upon a single public act that they originated, others whose names are less known can county by the score the progeny of their brains, now alive and active in the affairs of the world. Of the latter class is Colonel Chapman of Oregon. There are few men in America, even among those esteemed great, who have originated and carried to completion a greater number of particular acts of large scope and general beneficence. Many...

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Biography of Henry Heppner

HENRY HEPPNER. – This s the gentleman after whom the city, in which he resides, and of which he was one of the first proprietors, and the builder of the first brick building, has been worthily named. He was born in Germany in 1843. He came to New York in 1858 and in 1863 via Cape Horn to San Francisco. His first venture was in Shasta, California, in the mercantile business; but after two years he transferred his business to Corvallis, Oregon. Meeting with little encouragement there he opened a stock at The Dalles, doing well for six years. As the mines of Idaho were opening out, he projected a trade with that territory. It was no easy matter transporting goods in the troublous times of 1861-63. The great war raging at that time took the attention of the government; and the Indians of the plains and the Upper Columbia became saucy and troublesome. Heppner operated by the Cañon City route. His means of transportation was a train of pack mules. On one of his trips, nearly two years after his commencement of the business, his train of twenty-nine mules was attacked, the animals driven in one direction, and the five men in charge compelled to take shelter in another. Fortunately this mishap occurred on the return trip, when the train was empty. He was able to replace the...

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Biographical Sketch of George W. Harris

GEORGE W. HARRIS. – This successful business man of Morrow county was born at Pittsfield, Pike county, Illinois, February 18, 1858. During his minor years he followed the fortunes of his parents, who moved to Iowa in 1860, and four years later crossed the plains to California with ox-teams, locating at Red Bluff. In 1865 they came to Oregon and located at Monmouth. From that date many changes and removals were undergone, including a return to California, a residence at Corvallis and again at Eugene; also a trip across the continent to Missouri, Texas and Iowa, and a return to Oregon, where a home was made at Bethel, Polk county; and in 1880 a final settlement at Pendleton. During these wanderings George received a good, common-school education, and upon reaching adult life studied medicine three years with his father with the expectation of taking a full course at some medical institute and receiving a degree, although he never completed the design. Soon after coming to Umatilla county, he began business for himself, making his first effort in agriculture. The winter of 1884 he spent at Portland in attendance upon the business college. With this further equipment for business, he returned to Pendleton and engaged as clerk the following year in a drug store. In 1885 he discovered, or made for himself, a suitable opportunity at Lexington, Oregon, and coming...

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Biography of George C. Gray

GEORGE C. GRAY. – Mr. Gray was born in East Tennessee in 1840. His father was a farmer, and also an active worker as preacher in the Baptist church, and upon arriving in Oregon in 1853 laid a Donation claim near Corvallis, conducting his farm six days in the week and carrying on religious work on Sundays. It was in these surroundings that young George grew to man’s estate; and his first independent exertions were as a laborer in Corvallis from 1854 to 1860. In 1861 he went to the Oro Fino mines, and in 1862 brought cattle to Walla Walla, selling the beef at the butcher’s block until 1863. Early in the spring of that year he went to the granite creek mines on the John Day river, shoveling his way through snow across the mountains. Purchasing a pony train he was enabled to do a large business in packing, but sold out some time after to Ish & Hailey. For a number of years he was engaged in mining speculations, and enlarged his operations as packer by extending his range to Idaho, Montana and British Columbia, meeting by the way adventures, the recital of which would fill a volume. In 1868 he engaged in mammoth operations in cattle, supplying as many as fifty to eighty beeves per week to the markets in the mines. In all these...

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Biography of Hon. R. S. Strahan

HON. R.S. STRAHAN. – Judge Strahan, as a member of the Oregon supreme court, is widely known as being able and upright, and is universally recognized as one of our most popular representatives of the state judiciary. He was born in Kentucky in 1835. During his childhood he removed with his father to the Platte reserve, as the section was then known, in Missouri, and several years later to Mexico in the same state, living on a farm until he reached manhood, and cultivating the use of brain, brawn and nerve, and cherishing a country-boy’s ambition. The strength and hope thus developed on a farm has served many a man, as well as Judge Strahan, with the impetus which has borne him far into the higher realms of action and society. He obtained all the education to be had at the country school-house, and to this added a brief academic course preparatory to the study of law, in which is tastes inclined him. He entered upon legal studies at Louisa, Kentucky, early in 1856, and completed his course and was admitted to the bar in 1857. Returning to the state which he now called his home, he set up a practice at Milan, Missouri, and met with due success. His abilities became so well known as to attract attention and inspire confidence among the people of the county (Sullivan)...

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Hansell, Delmar A. – Obituary

Delmar A. Hansell, 85, of La Grande, and a former Baker City resident, died Aug. 1, 2002, at his home. A celebration of his life took place Aug. 2 at Loveland Funeral Chapel, with Pastor Gary Hood of ioneer Park Church officiating. Mr. Hansell was born Feb. 3, 1917, in Corvallis to William Henry and Lydia L. Bullis Hansell. He attended Corvallis and Newport high schools. He married Ernestine (Teen) Gardener on Nov. 12, 1947, in Caldwell, Idaho. They lived in Corvallis, then moved to Baker in 1950 and to La Grande in 1956, where Mr. Hansell was a custodian at Greenwood Elementary School. He later transferred to the grounds department. He worked for La Grande School District for 26 years, retiring in 1982. He was known for his love of fishing, the outdoors and his family. Mr. Hansell is survived by his wife, Ernestine, of La Grande; sons, Mike Hansell of La Grande, Scott and Cheryl Hansell of Corvallis, David Hansell and special friend Mike, of Seattle; daughters and their spouses, Patti Nagy and Ginny Lambert of La Grande, and Betty and Bill Owen of Imbler; sisters, Laverne Martin of King City, Jean Black and Beverly Howard of Corvallis; 15 grandchildren and 14 great-grandchildren. He was preceded in death by his son, Wally; his grandson, Kris; two sisters and one brother. Contributions in Mr. Hansell’s memory may be...

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Craig, Paul Dennis “Denny” – Obituary

Paul Dennis “Denny” Craig, 66, of Las Vegas, Nev., a former North Powder resident, died Aug. 20, 2002, at Las Vegas. Mr. Craig’s body was cremated. There was a private funeral at Las Vegas. There will be a memorial service at 1:30 p.m. Saturday, Sept. 14, at the Haines United Methodist Church. Pastor Sally Wiens will officiate. Denny was born on March 11, 1936, at Baker City. He was raised on his parents’ ranch at North Powder and was a 1954 graduate of Powder Valley High School. He attended the University of Oregon at Eugene for one year and Eastern Oregon University at La Grande for one year. From there he moved with his family to the Willamette Valley. He worked at Oregon Metallurgical Co. and then went into the dairy business with his father and brother. He moved to Portland in 1960 where he was in the restaurant and lounge business at Portland, Mount Hood and Corvallis. Mr. Craig married Patricia Louise O’Connor on Dec. 25, 1971. They then moved to Salem where he formed his own yard maintenance business. Upon retiring and selling his business, the couple moved to Las Vegas. Between traveling, he still did occasional yard service work, for which he really had a talent and he really enjoyed. Hunting, sports, children and animals were a huge part of his life. He always had two...

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