Biography of Trueman Powers
TRUEMAN POWERS. – Among all the pioneers, few have left a richer legacy of quiet manhood than Trueman Powers. A gentleman of the past generation, of dignified and considerate manners, of deep conscientiousness, and prevailing force of mind and will, he occupies a distinctive place in the memory of all who knew him, and in the history of Oregon. He was born in Vermont in 1803. He received in that state the education then in vogue, which gave much prominence to music in its curriculum. The proficiency thus gained in singing was to Mr. Powers, a lifelong delight, and an efficient means of usefulness.
A number of years of his early manhood were spent in the South and East; and in 1846 he crossed the plains to Oregon. That year was marked by unusual Indian atrocities; and the lady who subsequently became his wife saw her first husband murdered, and was all night alone with his dead body. In 1848 Mr. Powers and his wife came to Clatsop county, and lived about a year on the Clatsop plains. He then went to the mines of California, and afterwards laid a Donation claim near the mouth of the Lewis and Clarke river on the tide lands in Clatsop county. Becoming deputy collector by appointment of General John Adair, he made his residence at Upper Astoria, and lived at that point until his death in 1883.
In public works of honor or benevolence, Mr. Powers was always at the fore. He early made an expedition far upon the plains to help immigrants who were in distress. He held a seat in the legislature at an early day. He was the first elder in the first Presbyterian church organized within the present limits of Oregon. In religious matters he was very active, being a leader in singing and devotions. He was prompt in securing educational advantages for the children of the community, and even after the age of seventy taught a school three months in order to secure for it the state aid.
His death, although coming upon him at the ripe age of four-score years, with strength already depleted by an accident sustained sometime before, was greatly mourned by his family and deplored by the community. His wife had preceded him to the other world. His only child, Mrs. M.H. Leinenweber, wife of the late well-known Christian Leinenweber, a leading businessman of Clatsop and Tillamook counties, lives at Upper Astoria with her three sons and one daughter, on the old homestead, improved as it has been by a very handsome residence.