M.J. MORLAN. – This prominent citizen of The Dalles was born in Lake County, Ohio, in 1835. In 1846 he moved to La Salle County, Illinois. In that state his parents were successful in securing good land and in improving their farms; and this was the home of our subject until he attained his majority. With a somewhat limited education, but with abundance of muscle and determination, he began life for himself working as a hired hand on his father’s farm, and saving nearly all his earnings.
His innate ambition and desire to reach the higher walks of life induced him to cross the plains in1857 to Portland, Oregon. Being but ill suited with this Webfoot metropolis, he returned eastward as far as Walla Walla and found a desirable location on the Touchet River, improving his own place and assisting the various ranchers until, in1860, he was able to buy a ranch at Dayton. His venture there, however, proving but a partial success, he disposed of his property in 1864, and removed again to Western Oregon, returning eastward in 1867 to Wasco County and engaging in sheep-husbandry. The first four years of that occupation were but little remunerative; and in 1871 he moved to Umatilla county, engaging very successfully in agriculture.
In 1873 he was married to Miss Mary E. Jones, who has born him two children, Charles and Mary.
Some four years since he found that his ranges were becoming restricted by reason of the extensive fencing and plowing of the land; and he therefore disposed of his sheep and invested the proceeds in land, owning at the present time a fine ranch near Heppner and grazing lands in Wasco county. Mr. Morlan has never aspired to political preferment, but is a fine example of those sturdy pioneers whose labor has made our state what she is today.