BEDFORD L. MARTIN – In the features of Mr. Martin we see another of those who passed through the fire and hardships of our Civil war. Born in Arkansas in 1847, he was bereft of both parents at the age of four years, and was taken to Indiana and brought up by an uncle. At the age of seventeen he enlisted in Company A, Tenth Indiana Cavalry, and served in the hard campaigns subsequent to 1863. At Hollow Gap he was in the charge where two hundred and fifty men were shot down from his regiment. At Nashville, he was taken prisoner, and spent four months and a half in Andersonville and other prison pens, being finally paroled at Lake City, Florida, so reduced in flesh as to weight but seventy-two pounds. After a month in the Union hospital at Jacksonville, and another at Annapolis, he was stationed at Fort Chase, Ohio, and was honorably discharged in August, 1865.
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After the war he led a wandering life for some years, seeking the best state in the union for a permanent home. He was stock-raising in Kansas, and was also in California, Georgia and Colorado. By the year 1871 he had passed through Portland to Puget Sound, locating a homestead at Steilacoom. In 1872 he was at Olympia, and afterwards at Seattle, but found a suitable location with J.C. Conner of La Conner, Washington Territory.
In 1874 he accepted a position as agent of the Puget Sound Lumber company of Utsalady, and became one of the first prospectors for coal on the Skagit. In1877 he took charge of the Puget Sound Mills Company at Utsalady, and remained until 1880, making a tour of the Kittitass valley in that year. But the superior attractions of La Conner again drew him thither; and he is now at that city, one of the most respected members of society, and engaged in a very successful mercantile business of his own. He has there acquired a considerably property, a pleasant home, and has a family of wife and two children.