Wednesday, September 24, 2008

Oregon Republican League: History 104 Biographies

Oregon Republican League: History 104 Biographies

Every week, the Oregon Republican League will post the biographies of important figures, in the League's/State of Oregon's history. Feel free to comment or share stories of your family's Republican affiliation.

An Illustrated History of Umatilla County & Morrow County, by Colonel William Parsons and W. S. Shiach with a brief outline of the early history of the State of Oregon. W. H. Lever, Spokane, WA, (1902), p. 427-428.

BENJAMIN F. RENN. - It is with a hearty good will that we accord to this representative citizen of our county a place in its abiding chronicles, for one who has defended his flag in the time when civil strife sought to rend our fair land in twain, who interposed his own life between his country and ruin, and on many fields of blood demonstrated that his was real patriotism, deserves to be placed high in the roll of honor, far above what our poor tribute could do, though freely it is paid. Of these real veterans we love to dwell upon their deed, facts, not fiction.

His birth occurred on December 15, 1837, on his father’s farm in Lycoming county, Pennsylvania, where he spent the years of his minority. The total amount of his schooling was summed up into three months, but industrious habits and an active mind would not be content at this and he followed Franklin’s plan until he became well read and abreast of the times. In the spring of 1859 he went to Bremer county, Iowa, and rented a farm from a man who was heavily attacked with the Pike’s Peak fever. Farming, for one season, he then, in 1861, enlisted in Company G, Ninth Iowa Infantry, Captain William Washburn, Colonel William Vandevere, First Division General Osterhause, Fifteenth Army Corps, General John A. Logan. He was in continuous service for three years and participated in many battles and sieges, besides much skirmishing and scouting, among which were Pea Ridge, Helena, Arkansas, then on to Vicksburg, where the soldiers suffered much from small pox, many dying. Here he helped to build many of the famous works of U.S. Grant. After some time here he was put under Sherman and fought at Chickasaw and Bayous, took part in the expedition up the White river, capturing seven thousand Confederates with all of the munitions, did field service at Port Hudson, was in the front in the struggle at Jackson, Mississippi, then on to Champion Hills, and again at the siege of Vicksburg, where he saw Grant and Pemberton under the old oak tree making terms. After this they again fought before Jackson and captured it, then across the Black river and so ended the first campaign. Suffering an attack on the fever here, he was removed to Memphis to the hospital, but regained his command at Stevenson, Alabama, in the fall of 1863, then hurried into the siege of Atlanta, with heavy fighting for forty days, when the city fell. This being the end of his time he was discharged at East Point, twenty miles south of Atlanta, in the enemy’s country, and was forced, with thirty companions, to fight the way back through Bragg’s lines, who held sway between Atlanta and Nashville. He arrived home safely in October, 1864, having never received a would through all these fierce fights, and having attained to the rank of sergeant. He remained in Pennsylvania for one year recuperating and then turned again to Iowa, engaging in general work until 1866, when on account of his health, he went to California via New York and the Isthmus, landing in San Francisco on July 5, 1866. Later he was able to enter active service and engaged as sawyer in Santa Clara and Mendocino counties for four years and then went to Kansas and later to southern Minnesota, purchasing a farm and remaining for four years. In 1876 he sold out and went to Salem, this state, laboring for wages and purchasing a farm later in Marion county, whence he went to Clark county, Washington territory. In 1866 he sold out there and came to Pendleton, where he has followed the hotel and feed business since, now being the owner and proprietor of a fine two-story pressed brick building at the corner of Court and Cotton streets.

On September 25, 1871, he was married to Miss Theresa Benedict, in Osage Mission, Kansas. They have the following children: Robert S., express agent at Pendleton; Dora, at Colfax; Minnie; Celia; Arthur Garfield; Orien Logan, the last two in school. Mr. Renn is Republican in politics and quite active in the campaigns. He is also a member of Kit Carson Post, 26, G.A.R., of Pendleton, where he held the position of vice commander for one term. He is one of the leading citizens of the city and is respected and esteemed by all, being a real lover of the country for which he did such valiant service.

Thursday, September 11, 2008

Have you forgotten?

Smoke from the remains of New York's World Trade Center shrouds lower Manhattan the day after the attacks. [From Reuters]
Darryl Worley
I hear people saying we don't need this war
But I say there's some things worth fighting for
What about our freedom and this piece of ground
We didn't get to keep 'em by backin down
They say that we don't realize the mess we're gettin in
Before you start your preachin let me ask you this my friend
Have You Forgotten
How it felt that day
To see your homeland under fire and her people blown away
Have you forgotten
When those towers fell, we had neighbors still inside
Going through a living hell
And you say we shouldn't worry about Bin Laden
Have you forgotten
They took all the footage off my TV
Said it's too disturbing for you and me
It'll just breed anger, that’s what the experts say
If it was up to me I'd show it everyday
Some say this country's just out lookin for a fight
But after 9/11 man I'd have to say that’s right
Have You Forgotten
How it felt that day
To see your homeland under fire and her people blown away
Have you forgotten
When those towers fell, we had neighbors still inside
Going through a living hell
And we vowed to get the ones behind bin Laden
Have you forgotten
I've been there with the soldiers
Who've gone away to war
And you can bet that they remember, just what they're fighting for
Have you forgotten
All the people killed
Yeah, some went down like heroes in that Pennsylvania field
Have you forgotten
About our Pentagon
All the loved ones that we lost and those left to carry on
Don't you tell me not to worry about Bin Laden
Have you forgotten
Have you forgotten
Have you forgotten

Friday, July 11, 2008

Oregon Republican League: History 104 Biographies

Oregon Republican League: History 104 Biographies

Every week, the Oregon Republican League will post the biographies of important figures, in the League's/State of Oregon's history. Feel free to comment or share stories of your family's Republican affiliation.

An Illustrated History of Umatilla County & Morrow County, by Colonel William Parsons and W. S. Shiach with a brief outline of the early history of the State of Oregon. W. H. Lever, Spokane, WA, (1902), p. 413-414.

JAMES POWER. - Among the worthy names of pioneers that adorn the pages of this work there must be alotted a space for that of Mr. Power, who was one of the early ones to settle in this part of the county. It was in the year 1880 that the wave of western action began to move him toward the Pacific slope, and being one who is ready to perceive a good thing, he was not long in shaping himself for the trip. Fortune had some good things stowed away in this fertile soil of Umatilla county that she was holding for those who would leave the land of their fathers and follow her leading. Our subject was one of those favored ones and now he can with satisfaction look over a whole section of as fine wheat fields as the sun shines on and rejoice that his strong box holds the deeds of it all. He first took up three hundred and twenty acres under the homestead and pre-emption rights and by good management he soon doubled his holding.

When the steel rails had not spanned the continent it was necessary for the pioneer to resign himself to the “prairie schooner” and laboriously toil toward the setting sun. But after the steam chariot began its courses it was indeed a brave and hardy spirit that would undertake that weary job of crossing the plains by team. But this obstacle was not to stop Mr. Power and he hitched his team night and morning from Missouri, Grundy county, the place of his birth, to Pendleton. With what a sense of rest did he select his claims on what is now the cross road between Stages and Despain Gulches, ten miles northwest from Pendleton. The journey was ended and he had found the spot fortune had selected for him. He was born September 1, 1850, and followed farming for thirty years before trying the west, and twenty years since coming here have made him a man of wide experience in tilling the soil and he is enabled by the best methods to get the very best returns from his land. His parents were James and Dorcas (Morris) Power. In all the local affairs and county politics he has a real personal interest and manifests activity in their adjustment as also in the school matters. The Republican fold is his political place as it manifests forth the principles he deems are the best for the welfare of the nation.Fraternally he is linked with the Red Men and is also a member of the Pioneer of the Pacific.

He was married March 12, 1876, to Miss Elsie Wild, daughter of Philip A. and Mary E. (Sandlin) Wild. Nine children have been born to them: Philip A., Mary E., Albert S., Thomas C., Alma A., William M., Henry F., and two deceased, Rebecca F. and Milliard H. The youth is now the patriarch with his children growing up around him and soon, as the old pioneers of the county are called away one by one, will his name be on the list, but his good works will remain to inspire and lead forward those who shall follow.

Wednesday, June 18, 2008

Oregon Republican League: History 104 Biographies

Oregon Republican League: History 104 Biographies

Every Wednesday/Thursday, the Oregon Republican League will post the biographies of important figures, in the League's/State of Oregon's history. Feel free to comment or share stories of your family's Republican affiliation.

An Illustrated History of Umatilla County & Morrow County, by Colonel William Parsons and W. S. Shiach with a brief outline of the early history of the State of Oregon. W. H. Lever, Spokane, WA, (1902), p. 410.

ALBERT FRIEDLY. - Albert Friedly, the prosperous and respected young farmer that we now have the pleasure of sketching, has made a name for himself in this his chosen county that is really enviable and is the product of intrinsic worth. He came from the good old state of Ohio, where he was born October 23, 1872. That the “Buckeye” state can furnish first-class farmers as well as presidents is evident to any one that will take the trouble to look over the fields and possessions of our subject.

In his native state he received a good common school education and then began to look the world square in the face, ready for the commencement of life’s responsibilities. The west was where his interest lay and at the early age of seventeen he started to see its various fields. In 1889 he arrived in this county, and being satisfied with its outlook selected land nine miles northwest from Pendleton, on Despain gulch, and bought it. That his youthful judgment was good is evidenced in that he still retains that land as his home place. He owns one hundred and sixty acres, but farms four hundred and eighty acres, raising wheat mostly. He has been enabled through his thrift and good financiering to add to his property good improvements in substantial buildings, etc. In politics he pulls with the “grand old party,” and is ever interested in the matters of school affairs and county government. The people have chosen him for school director for three years and he is still serving in that capacity.

His fraternal associations are with the Maccabees, where he holds a membership.

On February 11, 1895, Mr. Albert Friedly and Miss May, daughter of Alfred and Jane (Arnold) Simpson, were joined in matrimony. They have two children, Earl and Olney.

The parents of our subject, John and Nancy (Freed) Friedly, are still residing in Hardin county, Ohio, where the father is a leading figure in politics, being one of the ablest attorneys in that portion of the state. He was mayor of the city of Ada and has always been identified with the Republican in political matters. But to till the soil was more congenial to the tastes of his son and hence Umatilla county is favored with his presence here among us and the neighborhood has captured one of Ohio’s excellent citizens.

Sunday, June 15, 2008

Oregon Republican League: History 104 Biographies

Oregon Republican League: History 104 Biographies

Every Wednesday/Thursday, the Oregon Republican League will post the biographies of important figures, in the League's/State of Oregon's history. Feel free to comment or share stories of your family's Republican affiliation.

An Illustrated History of Umatilla County & Morrow County, by Colonel William Parsons and W. S. Shiach with a brief outline of the early history of the State of Oregon. W. H. Lever, Spokane, WA, (1902), p. 401-402.

WILLIAM H. GULLIFORD. - This leading and representative citizen of Umatilla county, well known and respected by all, has frequently been honored by his fellows placing him in a position of trust, which he has ever filled with that integrity and ability that are characteristic of his entire career, while his life of brilliant success in business affairs is a bright example of industry and good financiering.

His birth occurred in Lane county, this state, on July 10, 1861, whence he was early removed by his parents, John L. and Julia Gulliford, to this county. He was educated in a private high school in Pendleton, and at the age of eighteen years commenced life’s activities on his own account. His first undertaking was herding sheep, at which he continued for three years, when his savings warranted him in purchasing a small band, which he did and located on a homestead on Butter creek. He then went into partnership with his brother, Arthur, which relation has continued uninterruptedly since. Prosperity has smiled upon them as a reward for their industry and carefulness, for to-day they number their flocks between seven and eight thousand, while their real estate aggregates over five thousand acres.On May 10, 1891, he was married to Miss Myrtle E. Montgomery, a native of Denver, Colorado. To them have been born two children, Lillian C. and William H., the latter deceased. He affiliates with the W. of W., Camp No. 41, of Pendleton. In political affairs he takes an active part, believing it the duty of every citizen to assist in handling the matters of public import. He has frequently been chosen to attend the Republican conventions as well as to the office of school director for a number of terms. He is respected and esteemed by all and is an exemplary representative of this progressive commonwealth.

Thursday, May 01, 2008

Oregon Republican League: History 104 Biographies

Oregon Republican League: History 104 Biographies

Every Wednesday/Thursday, the Oregon Republican League will post the biographies of important figures, in the League's/State of Oregon's history. Feel free to comment or share stories of your family's Republican affiliation.

An Illustrated History of Umatilla County & Morrow County, by Colonel William Parsons and W. S. Shiach with a brief outline of the early history of the State of Oregon. W. H. Lever, Spokane, WA, (1902), p. 396.

GEORGE BUZAN. - Among the worthy representatives of that time honored class of men and women who fought their way into the domain of the savage and wrested from his selfish grasp the fertile sections of the various states of this Union, must be mentioned those whose intrepidity and valor led them into these regions to do the pioneers’ work, from which have resulted such rich legacies and bountiful bequests to the later settlers in this favored spot. A typical one in this number of sturdy pioneers is the man whose name initiates this paragraph, and whose life of uprightness and intrinsic moral worth has been passed largely in the bounds of Umatilla county.

George Buzan was born in Grundy county, Missouri, on October 14 1850, to Wills and Eliza J. (Reeder) Buzan, natives, respectively, of Indiana and Ohio. In his native state and in Kansas were passed the years of the minority of our subject, who received in those places the educational discipline to be gained from the common schools. At the age of twenty-three his aspirations led him to seek his fortune in the far west, and he accordingly migrated to Colorado, afterward to Wyoming, and then to Nevada and finally to California, where he engaged in the agricultural pursuit. It was in 1877 that he came to this county, settling first on Wild Horse creek, about five miles west from Adams, giving his attention there to wheat raising until 1890. He secured his land by the pre-emption and homestead rights and gained a very gratifying success while engaged in its cultivation. In 1890 he left the farm and embarked in the operation of a foundry for the Pendleton Manufacturing Company, following the same for four years. After the expiration of this time he removed to Helix until 1898, in which year he received the nomination for county assessor on the Republican ticket and carried the county by a handsome majority. During his term of two years he served with such acceptibility and efficiency that the people again asked him to assume the trust for another term, in which incumbency he is now serving. He is generally active in the political matters of the county and nation, having attended many of the conventions, seeking ever the welfare of the people and the advancement of the commonwealth.

He was married to Miss Martha E., daughter of David and Clara (Pence) Brown, in 1880. The issue of this union has been four children: Clinton, Myrtle J., Laura Belle, Clara Ollie, deceased. Mr. Buzan is affiliated with the I. O. O. F., having been a member of that order since 1872, with the Masonic fraternity and the Woodmen of the World. He is also a member of the Christian church, being a free supporter of its interests and an ardent champion of his faith, ever demeaning himself so that his life will be a light and his example worthy to be followed.

Wednesday, April 09, 2008

Oregon Republican League: History 104 Biographies

Oregon Republican League: History 104 Biographies

Every Wednesday/Thursday, the Oregon Republican League will post the biographies of important figures, in the League's/State of Oregon's history. Feel free to comment or share stories of your family's Republican affiliation.

An Illustrated History of Umatilla County & Morrow County, by Colonel William Parsons and W. S. Shiach with a brief outline of the early history of the State of Oregon. W. H. Lever, Spokane, WA, (1902), p. 390-391.

JOHN S. VINSON. - This prominent business man, successful educator and esteemed citizen is one of the early pioneers of Umatilla county, and has been a potent factor in its industrial development for thirty-five years, holding in this time many public positions, where he has ever shown a faithfulness and wisdom that have endeared him to the constituency and commanded the respect and admiration of all.

He was born to James S. and Catherine (Sackette) Vinson, in Des Moines, Iowa, on December 25, 1848, and crossed the plains with his parents in 1852. They settled in Clackamas county, establishing the post office of Needy, James S. Vinson being the first incumbent, who also operated a general merchandise establishment until he became bankrupt by taking the Oregon Indian war script from the settlers, which depreciated in value to almost nothing. At this time his wife died, and he turned to the mines in Idaho for employment, remaining there for three years, after which time he married Mrs. Asenath Long, a pioneer of 1862. They removed to this county, settling on Butter creek, where they remained until 1882, when Mrs. Vinson died and he returned to Iowa on a visit to his sister, wife of General Weaver. In 1895, he returned to the Willamette valley, where he passed away to his rewards in another world, in November, 1895, being eighty-six years of age. He had been a prominent man in public affairs, always faithful and efficient. It was he who was the commissioner appointed by the court to locate the town of Pendleton.

Our subject was educated in the public schools and higher institutions in the Willamette valley, and then taught school in this county for six years, taking rank with the first educators in this part of the country. Succeeding this he was appointed postmaster at Vinson post office on Butter creek, occupying that position for ten years and operating a prosperous general merchandise establishment meanwhile. After this he removed to Nolan and established a post office, adding the grain business to his merchandising. During this time he was nominated by the Republicans for legislator from this county, but was defeated by the division of the county. In 1892 he again received the nomination, but that year the county went entirely Democratic. He has ever displayed that activity and interest in political matters that becomes the loyal citizen. In 1895 he purchased a fruit farm and gave his attention to its cultivation and improvements for three years, and then traded it for a general merchandise business in Milton, continuing there with a fine trade until one year ago, when he sold out and brought his present business in Freewater. In addition to his business, which is very prosperous, he owns city property in Freewater and in Pendleton that is quite valuable.In fraternal affiliations he is identified with the K. of P., the Pioneers of the Pacific, and is counselor of Harmony Lodge, No. 237, Order of Pendo, all of Freewater.

By the way of reminiscence it is interesting to note that during the Bannock war Mr. Vinson remained on the farm on Butter creek with only one companion when thirty-five of the Indian lodges were on his place. Some men who were hunting stock, having stopped at his house on the night of the Willow creek fight, were murdered the next day, and stragglers from that battle came announcing that the volunteers were all murdered, which caused considerable consternation, and our subject was useful in allaying the fears and removing those who were wounded and the women and children of an emigrant train that had just arrived to a place of safety, although he returned the next day and remained on his farm.

Wednesday, April 02, 2008

Oregon Republican League: History 104 Biographies

Oregon Republican League: History 104 Biographies

Every Wednesday/Thursday, the Oregon Republican League will post the biographies of important figures, in the League's/State of Oregon's history. Feel free to comment or share stories of your family's Republican affiliation.

An Illustrated History of Umatilla County & Morrow County, by Colonel William Parsons and W. S. Shiach with a brief outline of the early history of the State of Oregon. W. H. Lever, Spokane, WA, (1902), p. 390.

FREDERICK A. HILL. - Deceased. To the esteemed citizen, worthy pioneer and respected gentleman whose name initiates this paragraph we accord this memorial in these chronicles of the county where he labored so long and faithfully, ever striving for the betterment and advancement of his fellows and the upbuilding of the commonwealth. He was in the van guard of that noble class of men and women who gave their lives to cut the way into these regions for the ingress of civilization’s principles, and to lay the foundations of the nation broad and deep, extending it to the limits that nature intended, and which noble work cannot be eulogized in too exalted terms. While many transients were within the borders of the county at different times, there were comparatively few actual settlers here when Mr. Hill took his ranch on Umatilla river about four and one-half miles southwest from where Pendleton now stands, in 1859. His widow owns the place and resides there to-day. For the first few years he was engaged in raising cattle and then went into the sheep business, which he followed continuously until his death. He owned a ranch on Crab creek , which was headquarters for the sheep, but this, however, he sold a little while before his death, leaving to his widow three other ranches and a large amount of stock, valued at about ten thousand dollars. Mr. Hill was always interested in politics, formerly adhering to the principles of the Democratic party, but later affiliating with the Republican party, whose platform more nearly expressed that which he believed to be for the good of the nation and the state.

He was married, on January 29, 1862, to Miss Phoebe, daughter of Jacob and Annie (Brown) Messinger, natives of Ohio. The fruit of this union has been the following: Daniel, Ellen Jane, wife of William Barber; Jacob C.; Frederick A.; Ernestine, wife of John Padon; Augustus F.; Dora Annie, wife of Luther Mathews; Rachel, wife of Charles Kidder; Rosa Ada, deceased; Phoebe, deceased; and Chancy E.

Mr. Hill was born in Leipsic, Germany, on September 4, 1832, remaining there only thirteen years, at which age he took up a seafaring life and followed the same for seven years, after which he came to California and spent a number of years in the search for nature’s hidden wealth. Then, as mentioned above, he came to this county and here in 1886 he was called from the scenes of earth to the world beyond. His children and widow mourn a devoted husband and a loving father. Mrs. Hill still resides upon the old homestead, where so many of their happy days were spent and around which cluster the memories and endearing thoughts of the days that will never return, again passing here quietly the golden years of her career, winding the last knots of the thread of life that has been well spun, cheered by the remembrance of days of industry and years in which integrity and uprightness were the constant dominant powers of her existence and wherein she stands at the present time.

Wednesday, March 26, 2008

Oregon Republican League: History 104 Biographies

Oregon Republican League: History 104 Biographies

Every Wednesday/Thursday, the Oregon Republican League will post the biographies of important figures, in the League's/State of Oregon's history. Feel free to comment or share stories of your family's Republican affiliation.

An Illustrated History of Umatilla County & Morrow County, by Colonel William Parsons and W. S. Shiach with a brief outline of the early history of the State of Oregon. W. H. Lever, Spokane, WA, (1902), p. 382-383.

JOHN WALKER. - This man, whose life we now have the privilege of epitomizing, has with laudable enterprise, and uprightness and integrity deserving of approbation, so demeaned himself in the arena of the world’s battle, and in his associations with his fellow men, that he justly merits an honorable recognition in the chronicles of Umatilla county. His parents, John and Jane (Stevenson) Walker, natives of Scotland’s rugged hills, early removed to Canada, where our subject was born on May, 1858, and where he received the training granted in the common schools, and where also he passed the first eighteen years of his existence. At that time the reports from this garden spot attracted him and he came hither in quest of a home. He first took a pre-emption in Morrow county, but afterward sold that and purchased three hundred and twnty acres where he now lives, seven and a half miles northwest from Athena. Upon this place he has put forth energy, guided by wise judgment, that has brought his farm to a high sate of cultivation, and given him the just reward of a comfortable and tasty home and an elegant estate. He has displayed good taste and wisdom in all is improvements, both in quality and arrangement, that add greatly to the value of his holdings.

On January 1, 1890, he began the new year nobly by taking to himself a wife, Miss Jennie Stevenson, the daughter of J. and Margaret (Cornwell) Stevenson. To enhance their connubial bliss there have been born to them four children, John C., Jennie M., Margaret R., Elsie E. Mr. Walker has always taken that active part in politics that becomes the worthy citizen, allying himself with the Republican party, as the one that more nearly lays down the principles he believes are for the welfare of the people generally. School matters and local affairs are a part of his interest and are as carefully attended to as are his own business enterprises. In fraternal affiliations he is associated with the Woodmen of the World, where his popularity is commensurate with the excellent position he holds in the estimation and respect of his friends and acquaintances.

Wednesday, March 19, 2008

Oregon Republican League: History 104 Biographies

Oregon Republican League: History 104 Biographies

Every Wednesday/Thursday, the Oregon Republican League will post the biographies of important figures, in the League's/State of Oregon's history. Feel free to comment or share stories of your family's Republican affiliation.

An Illustrated History of Umatilla County & Morrow County, by Colonel William Parsons and W. S. Shiach with a brief outline of the early history of the State of Oregon. W. H. Lever, Spokane, WA, (1902), p. 379-380.

JOHN RUSH.- As a defender of the flag in the time of war, an intrepid pioneer during the days of explorations, a loving husband and estimable citizen, the man whose name heads this paragraph has left a record untarnished and commendable, of which those who succeed him may be justly proud. The spirit in the “Green Mountain” boys that led them to accomplish deeds of valor in the days of the Revolution, is the same that inspired this one of their descendants to equally as brilliant efforts in defense of the Union, which they established.

Born in Vermont, to Benjamin and Mary (LaBelle) Rush, on March 25, 1841, he passed the first years of his life there also, gaining the education possible in the limited time. When but fourteen years of age, in 1855, he traveled across the continent to engage in the mining fields of California. Considering the modes of travel then in vogue, and his tender years, together with the lawless state of affairs in the western regions at that time, this is sufficient to demonstrate the sterling qualities in the lad, which so brightly materialized during subsequent years. When the call came for men to fight for the honor of their flag, young Rush was ready to respond, and enlisted in Company B, First Battalion, Nevada Cavalry, under Captain Joseph H. Mathewson. June 21, 1863, was the date of his enlistment, and for three continuous years he did faithful military service for his country, when he was mustered out at Camp Douglas, Utah. From here he went to Kansas and remained there until 1872, at which date he came to this county and took up a homestead and purchased one hundred and sixty acres more from the railroad, ten miles northwest from where Athena now is. Here he engaged in the cultivation of his farm until the time of his death, which sad event occurred October 5, 1895.
The record of his life shows Mr. Rush to have been a man of great energy, of fearless courage, directed by an excellent and wise judgment, and possessed of a tender heart that always accompanies a really brave spirit. The time of his demise was a day of sadness for all who knew him, but his meed is that he left the heritage of a brilliant career and untarnished life for the edification and encouragement of those who follow after.

His political life was marked with activity and uprightness, being a prominent figure in the convention , but never seeking for himself political preferment. He held with the Republican party and was a member of the G. A. R. In 1868 he was married to Miss Martha Ann Seratt, daughter of John and Nancy (Lane) Seratt. She with six children survives him. The children are as follows: Anna, Harriet, Dorothy, Alberta, Edwin, Ida M. Mrs. Rush still lives on the old home place, which she is carrying on in a commendable manner, demonstrating that she is capable of wise husbandry in addition to her other many accomplishments. On August 15, 1901, death again made inroad into the household, this time carrying off Miss Dorothy, who peacefully passed the river and now sleeps in that great bivouac of the dead.

Friday, March 14, 2008

Oregon Republican League: History 104 Biographies

Oregon Republican League: History 104 Biographies

Every Wednesday/Thursday, the Oregon Republican League will post the biographies of important figures, in the League's/State of Oregon's history. Feel free to comment or share stories of your family's Republican affiliation.

An Illustrated History of Umatilla County & Morrow County, by Colonel William Parsons and W. S. Shiach with a brief outline of the early history of the State of Oregon. W. H. Lever, Spokane, WA, (1902), p. 378-379.

T. DICKERSON. [Editor inserted: Terisha Dickerson] - The esteemed citizen and early pioneer whose name is mentioned above has wrought is this county for nearly one half of a century, being one of its earliest settlers and has always maintained an unsullied reputation for integrity and uprightness, while his industry and wise judgment have placed him in the front ranks of the leading men of the county.

He was born on January 5, 1828, in Tennessee, where he received a good education and grew to manhood. In 1849 he removed to Iowa and engaged in blacksmithing for ten years. Following this he crossed the plains with ox teams and settled in Washington territory, remaining there for about one year, when he came to Umatilla county in 1860, and soon embarked in the stock business and agriculture, which he has uninterruptedly followed since, reaping that success that invariably comes to wisely and continuously directed effort, although he has been beset with many adverse and trying circumstances. In the winter of 1860 and 1861 his whole bank of stock, except some few stragglers was killed by the severe weather. He took a homestead near Hudson bay and still retains it, having added more by purchase.

He was married on January 17, 1856, to Miss Clarissa Beamis, and to them were born ten children: Malissa, wife of Henry C. Derrick, of this county; Annie, wife of Charles Sanders; Frank, married and living near Hudson bay; Almira, wife of Charles Russell; Charles, married; Adda, wife of L. Conrad, all living in this county. The others are deceased. On May 14, 1895, Mrs. Dickerson passed away to her reward in another world, and her remains are buried near their home. Mr. Dickerson has always taken an active part in political matters, being a leading figure in his party, the Republican. He affiliates with the Christian church, being an ardent worker in the cause of is faith. On January 17, 1900, he was married to Mrs. K. P. Savage, widow of J. H. Savage, who has six children. Of late years, Mr. Dickerson has retired from the active life of former years and is enjoying the golden years of his career in a pleasant home in Milton, where he receives the respect and esteem of his entire acquaintanceship, which he so justly merits.

Wednesday, March 05, 2008

Oregon Republican League: History 104 Biographies

Oregon Republican League: History 104 Biographies

Every Wednesday/Thursday, the Oregon Republican League will post the biographies of important figures, in the League's/State of Oregon's history. Feel free to comment or share stories of your family's Republican affiliation.

An Illustrated History of Umatilla County & Morrow County, by Colonel William Parsons and W. S. Shiach with a brief outline of the early history of the State of Oregon. W. H. Lever, Spokane, WA, (1902), p. 374-375.

HORACE WALKER. - This well known citizen, whose life we have the pleasure to epitomize for the chronicles of Umatilla county, is a man who has fully merited the esteem and confidence of his fellow citizens that from time to time they have taken pleasure in exhibiting by their franchises. Though but thirty-five years of age he has won a political standing by his faithfulness of trust bestowed, wisdom in handling public questions, and fearlessness in championing the cause of his constituency, that bid fair, in no far distant day, to place him among the leaders of his party in his state. He is a stanch Republican, because he is confident the principles of that party are those best for the welfare of the people at large.

Mr. Walker is a native of Ontario, Canada, being born May 14, 1864, and remaining there until 1877 when he came to this county. His residence here has been continuous since that date and his life has been practically formed in this western realm. He owns, with his brother, four hundred and eighty acres of land which they farm to wheat.

The marriage of Mr. Walker and Miss Agnes Jane, daughter of William and Mary (Thompson) Still, occurred on April 27, 1892, and the following children have been born to them, Horace Raymond, Edna Bernice, Grant. In fraternal circles the popularity of our subject is fully sustained, being a member of the Masonic, K. of P., and A. O. U. W. lodges, in which he takes a commendable pride. He has attended many of the county conventions and some of the state, as a delegate. At the last election he was selected for one of the county commissioners, in discharging the duties of which office he has made a very acceptable record, demonstrating to the voters of the county his ability, and opening the door for greater triumphs, which his acumen and probity are sure to accomplish.

Wednesday, February 27, 2008

Oregon Republican League: History 104 Biographies

Oregon Republican League: History 104 Biographies

Every Wednesday/Thursday, the Oregon Republican League will post the biographies of important figures, in the League's/State of Oregon's history. Feel free to comment or share stories of your family's Republican affiliation.

An Illustrated History of Umatilla County & Morrow County, by Colonel William Parsons and W. S. Shiach with a brief outline of the early history of the State of Oregon. W. H. Lever, Spokane, WA, (1902), p. 354-363.

JOHN N. BAHR.- Some of the most enterprising and reliable citizens of this republic have come from the Anglo-Saxon Empire of Germany, and among that number is the worthy and estimable subject of this sketch, an epitome of whose life is justly incorporated in the records of Umatilla county.

He was born in the “Fatherland” to Jacob H. and Margaret (Clausen) Bahr, on September 17, 1845, and there continued for the first twenty-five years of his life, acquiring a fine education in its excellent schools. In 1870 he left behind the scenes of childhood and sought out the better opportunities of the new world. He first settled in Solano county, California, and began operations as a tiller of the soil. Eight years later he came direct to this county and took a homestead, nine miles northeast from Pendleton, where he still resides. With assiduity he has continued here in the pursuit of agriculture and success has crowned his efforts at every point. His realty holdings have increased until now he is the proprietor of an estate of one thousand acres, which his wise husbandry has made to yield the best returns in wheat. Commensurate with his large estate are the mammoth barn, comfortable residence, well selected orchard and other numerous and substantial improvements.

Miss Katherine McColgan, a native of the state of Maine, and daughter of Dennis and Mary (Cunningham) McColgan, became his bride on July 2, 1878, and to them have been born the following children: Katherine, Ellis, Matha, Maria. Mr. Bahr has always taken and active part in political affairs, realizing the importance of attending to the public matter in the same careful and wise manner that he operates his own business. He is a frequent delegate to the county conventions, and always strives to put forward the men of worth and integrity, although he has never aspired to public office for himself. The Republic party holds to the principles that he believes are the best for the country and hence he co-operates with it. He is a member of the Lutheran church and takes a hearty and active interest in its affairs, while his upright Christian life and sterling principles have won for him the regard and respect of all with whom he has to do.

Friday, February 22, 2008

The Loss of Oregon's Sgt. Josh Brennan in Afghanistan

Josh's mother has posted this article on her myspace. We'll post the formal citation soon. Josh was the first person to respond, when the ORL asked for some Eastern Oregon online volunteer assistance. We had no idea, at the time, that he was doing so from halfway around the world, and in harm's way.
Inserted: For publication 02/24/2008 in the New York Times


Battle Company Is Out There
The counterinsurgency in Afghanistan's Korengal valley is one day after another of difficult decisions and bloody consequences. Hearts and minds are hardening.

by Elizabeth Rubin

We tumbled out of two Black Hawks onto a shrub-dusted mountainside. It was a windy, cold October evening. A half-moon illuminated the tall pines and peaks. Through night-vision goggles the soldiers and landscape glowed in a blurry green-and-white static. Just across the valley, lights flickered from a few homes nestled in the terraced farmlands of Yaka China, a notorious village in the Korengal River valley in Afghanistan's northeastern province of Kunar. Yaka China was just a few villages south and around a bend in the river from the Americans' small mountain outposts, but the area's reputation among the soldiers was mythic. It was a known safe haven for insurgents. American troops have tended to avoid the place since a nasty fight a year or so earlier. And as Halloween approached, the soldiers I was with, under the command of 26-year-old Capt. Dan Kearney, were predicting their own Yaka China doom.
The Korengal Valley is a lonely outpost of regress: most of the valley's people practice Wahhabism, a more rigid variety of Islam than that followed by most Afghans, and about half of the fighters confronting the U.S. there are homegrown. The rest are Arabs, Pakistanis, Chechens, Uzbeks; the area is close to Pakistan's frontier regions where Osama bin Laden, Ayman al-Zawahiri and other Al Qaeda figures are often said to be hiding out. The Korengal fighters are fierce, know the terrain and watch the Americans' every move. On their hand-held radios, the old jihadis call the Americans ''monkeys,'' ''infidels,'' ''bastards'' and ''the kids.'' It's psychological warfare; they know the Americans monitor their radio chatter.

As far as ''the kids'' are concerned, the insurgents are ghosts - so the soldiers' tactics often come down to using themselves as bait. The insurgents specialize in ambushes, harassing fire and hit-and-run attacks. NATO's military advantage in such a war is air power. The soldiers don't hesitate to call in Big Daddy (who, in today's military, often flies in with the voice of a female pilot). But while these flying war machines are saviors to the soldiers, they cannot distinguish between insurgents and civilians.

I went to Afghanistan last fall with a question: Why, with all our technology, were we killing so many civilians in air strikes? As of September of last year, according to Human Rights Watch, NATO was causing alarmingly high numbers of civilian deaths - 350 by the coalition, compared with 438 by the insurgents. The sheer tonnage of metal raining down on Afghanistan was mind-boggling: a million pounds between January and September of 2007, compared with half a million in all of 2006.

After a few days, the first question sparked more: Was there a deeper problem in the counterinsurgency campaign? More than 100 American soldiers were killed last year, the highest rate since the invasion. Why were so many more American troops being killed? To find out, I spent much of the fall in the Korengal Valley and elsewhere in Kunar province alongside soldiers who were making life-and-death decisions almost every day - decisions that led to the deaths of soldiers and of civilians.

Subduing the Valley
Over the last two years, the Americans have steadily increased their presence in Kunar province, fanning out to the small platoon-size outposts that have become the signature of the new counterinsurgency doctrine in both Afghanistan and Iraq. The Korengal Outpost, nicknamed the KOP, was built in April 2006 on the site of a former timber mill and motel. The soldiers of Battle Company of the 173rd Airborne Brigade Combat Team live there in dusty tents and little wooden huts. They now have hot food and a small chow tent with an Internet linkup and a few phones for calling home. But the place was protected by not much more than concertina wire and sentries. Nearly every time I arrived at the KOP our helicopter was greeted by sniper fire or the dushka - a Russian-made antiaircraft gun.

Dan Kearney was essentially lord of the Korengal Valley. A self-described Georgia army brat, he grew up idolizing his warrior dad, Frank Kearney, and wanted to move in his father's world of covert and overt operations. (His father is now a lieutenant general in Special Operations command.) Kearney often calls himself a dumb jock, playing the crass, loudmouthed tough guy with his soldiers. He had been in Iraq and told me he had gone emotionally dead there with all the dying and killing, and stayed that way until the birth of his son a year ago. His hardest day in Iraq was when a close friend, Rob Shaw, was severely wounded by an improvised explosive device that killed his first sergeant and a bunch of their friends - and the next thing he knew their colonel was asking Kearney to step in for Shaw and lead the company.
But as hard as Iraq was, he said, nothing was as tough as the Korengal. Unlike in Iraq, where the captains and lieutenants could let down their guard in a relatively safe, fortified operating base, swapping stories and ideas, here they had no one to talk to and were almost as vulnerable to enemy fire inside the wire as out. Last summer, insurgents stormed one of the bases in a nearby valley and wounded 16.

And unlike every other place I've been in Afghanistan - even the Pech River valley, just an hour's drive away - the Korengal had no Afghan police or district leaders for the Americans to work with. The Afghan government, and Afghans down the valley, seemed to have washed their hands of the Korengalis. As Kearney put it to me one day at the KOP, the Korengal is like a tough Los Angeles neighborhood, ''and we're the L.A.P.D. kicking in the door, arresting guys, demanding information about the gangs, and slowly the people say, 'No, we don't know anything, because that guy in the gang, he's with my sister, and that other guy, he's my uncle's cousin.' Now we've angered them for so many years that they've decided: 'I'm gonna stick with the A.C.M.''' - anticoalition militants - '''who are my brothers and I'm not gonna rat them out.'''
So what exactly was his job out here? To subdue the valley. It's a task the Marines had tried, and then the soldiers of the Army's 10th Mountain Division - a task so bloody it seemed to drive the 10th Mountain's soldiers to a kind of madness. Kearney's soldiers told me they'd been spooked by the weird behavior of their predecessors last May: near the end of their tour, many would sit alone on the fire base talking to themselves. Privates disobeyed their sergeants, and squad leaders refused to step outside the wire to show the new boys the terrain. No one wanted to be shot in the last days of his tour.
Kearney kept his soldiers on a tight leash at first. Col. John Nicholson, a brigade commander with the 10th Mountain Division, had promised the Afghans he would not bomb their homes. When Kearney and the 173rd Airborne Brigade Combat Team officially took over from the division's 3rd Brigade Combat Team on June 5, they kept that promise. ''My guys would tell me they didn't know which houses they're shooting from, and I'd tell them they can't shoot back into the villages,'' Kearney recalled. ''They hated me.'' The insurgents were testing the new captain, he suspected, by deliberately shooting from homes. On July 10, the Korengalis ambushed his soldiers from one house they often used - a three-story mansion on a fertile outcropping, with balconies overlooking the valley, that belonged to Haji Matin, a timber baron turned insurgent leader. It had been the scene of fighting in the past.
When Kearney's moment of decision came, two of 2nd Platoon's sergeants, Kevin Rice and Tanner Stichter, had been shot, and the fight was still going on. Kearney could see a woman and child in the house. ''We saw people moving weapons around,'' Kearney told me. ''I tried everything. I fired mortars to the back side to get the kids to run out the front. I shot to the left, to the right. The Apache'' - an attack helicopter - ''got shot at and left. I kept asking for a bomb drop, but no one wanted to sign off on the collateral damage of dropping a bomb on a house.'' Finally, he said, ''We shot a javelin and a tow'' - both armor-piercing missiles. ''I didn't get shot at from there for two months,'' Kearney said. ''I ended up killing that woman and that kid.''

Kearney could often sound cold-blooded, like when he'd march into the mess tent in shorts, improvising rap lyrics about killing bad guys. But then he'd switch to counselor, trying to salvage a soldier's marriage, or he'd joke with a Korengali elder about arranging a marriage between his own infant son and the elder's daughter to make peace. The performances steeled him against shouldering so much mortality. As he put it, ''The only reason anyone's listening to me in this valley right now is 'cause I'm dropping bombs on them.'' Still, he wasn't going to let himself shoot at houses every time his unit took fire: ''I'd just create more people that hate me.''

A Blood Feud
In late 2001, the B-52 symbolized, for many Afghans, liberation from Taliban rule. They wove images of the plane into their carpets. Urban legends sprang up about the B-52's power, how the planes glided along unscathed, even as the Taliban barraged them with antiaircraft fire. Kabulis spread the story that the B-52s had dropped thousands of leaflets saying, ''Hit us if you can!'' - and afterward the Taliban didn't waste their bullets on the B-52s.

But the jets that defeated the Taliban were wiping out innocent families as well. In July 2002, Special Forces in the mountains of Oruzgan thought they were destroying a high-value Taliban target, but instead they rocketed and bombed an engagement party. About 40 Afghans were killed and nearly 100 were wounded.

Such mistakes have continued, though the causes can change. The insurgents regularly use civilians as shields, children as spotters and women as food suppliers. NATO killing civilians is great propaganda for the Taliban. At the same time, to Afghans with little technological sophistication, the scale and impersonality make the accidents seem intentional. Many are convinced the Americans are deliberately bombing them and even deliberately aiding a Taliban comeback. The reality is that bombs are only as accurate as the intelligence on the ground - and since 9/11, the U.S. and NATO have used air power as a substitute for ground troops.

By now, seven years of air strikes and civilian casualties, humiliating house searches and arbitrary detentions have pushed many families and tribes to revenge. The Americans then see every Afghan in those pockets of recalcitrance as an enemy. If you peel back the layers, however, there's always a local political story at the root of the killing and dying. That original misunderstanding and grievance fertilizes the land for the Islamists. Whom do you want to side with: your brothers in God's world or the infidel thieves?
In the case of the Korengal Valley, the story began about a century ago, when the tribesmen now known as Korengalis were kicked out of the province of Nuristan (immediately north of Kunar province) and settled in the Korengal, which was rich with timber forests and farmland. Over time they made an alliance with one branch of the large Safi tribe, which once dominated Kunar politics. But down the road along the Pech River valley, the rest of the Safis opposed the Korengalis.

As the Afghans tell the story, from the moment the Americans arrived in 2001, the Pech Valley timber lords and warlords had their ear. Early on, they led the Americans to drop bombs on the mansion of their biggest rival - Haji Matin. The air strikes killed several members of his family, according to local residents, and the Americans arrested others and sent them to the prison at Bagram Air Base. The Pech Valley fighters working alongside the Americans then pillaged the mansion. And that was that. Haji Matin, already deeply religious, became ideological and joined with Abu Ikhlas, a local Arab linked to the foreign jihadis.
By 2007, the Americans understood what happened. Last year, the governor of Nuristan even sat them down with the Korengali elders to try and mediate between the two sides. Nothing came of it. Kearney tried to dig deeper, sending e-mail messages to anthropologists and Afghan experts to get their guidance. He spent hours listening to Haji Zalwar Khan - who acted as the valley's representative to the Americans and the government - talk about history and grievances. Haji Zalwar, a jihadi veteran of the anti-Soviet fight, bore the valley's burden almost alone and had the grim demeanor to prove it. Kearney met as many villagers as possible to learn the names of all the elders and their families. But he inherited a blood feud between the Korengalis and the Americans that he hadn't started, and he was being sucked into its logic.

''Serious P.T.S.D.''
Last autumn, after five months of grueling foot patrols up and down the mountains, after fruitless encounters with elders who smiled in the morning and were host to insurgents in the evening and after losing friends to enemy fire, Captain Kearney's men could relate to the sullen, jittery rage of their predecessors in the 10th Mountain Division. Many wondered what they were doing out there at all.

Kearney refused to entertain that thought. He would tell his visitors, whether generals or reconstruction teams, that his campaign plan was clear, if modest: ''It's World War II Pacific-island hopping, turning one village at a time.'' Over five months, he had gained about 400 yards of terrain. When some generals and colonels had flown in for a quick tour, and Kearney was showing them the lay of the land, one officer said to another, as Kearney later recalled it, ''I don't know why we're even out here.'' Another officer jumped in to talk up the logic of the operation. Kearney told me he thought: Sort your stuff out before you come out here. My boys are sucking it up and dying. ... For besides being lord of the valley, he had another role to play - motivator, disciplinarian and confidant to his soldiers. ''It's like being in charge of a soap opera,'' he told me. ''I feel like Dr. Phil with guns.''

One full-moon night I was sitting outside a sandbag-reinforced hut with Kearney when a young sergeant stepped out hauling the garbage. He looked around at the illuminated mountains, the dust, the rocks, the garbage bin. The monkeys were screeching. ''I hate this country!'' he shouted. Then he smiled and walked back into the hut. ''He's on medication,'' Kearney said quietly to me.
Then another soldier walked by and shouted, ''Hey, I'm with you, sir!'' and Kearney said to me, ''Prozac. Serious P.T.S.D. from last tour.'' Another one popped out of the HQ cursing and muttering. ''Medicated,'' Kearney said. ''Last tour, if you didn't give him information, he'd burn down your house. He killed so many people. He's checked out.''

As I went to get some hot chocolate in the dining tent, the peaceful night was shattered by mortars, rockets and machine-gun fire banging and bursting around us. It was a coordinated attack on all the fire bases. It didn't take long to understand why so many soldiers were taking antidepressants. The soldiers were on a 15-month tour that included just 18 days off. Many of them were ''stop-lossed,'' meaning their contracts were extended because the army is stretched so thin. You are not allowed to refuse these extensions. And they felt eclipsed by Iraq. As Sgt. Erick Gallardo put it: ''We don't get supplies, assets. We scrounge for everything and live a lot more rugged. But we know the war is here. We got unfinished business.''

For sanity, all they had was the medics' tent, video games and movies - ''Gladiator,'' ''Conan the Barbarian,'' ''Dogma,'' Monty Python. Down the road in the Pech Valley, soldiers played cricket with Afghan kids and had organized boxing and soccer matches. Lt. Kareem Hernandez, a New Yorker running a base on the Pech River, regularly bantered over dinner with the Afghan police. Neighbors would come by with tips. But here in the Korengal, the soldiers were completely alienated from the local culture. One night while watching a scene from HBO's ''Rome'' in which a Roman soldier tells a slave he wants to marry her, a soldier asked which century the story was set in. ''First B.C. or A.D.,'' said another soldier. The first shook his head: ''And they're still living like this 800 meters outside the wire.''
At the end of the summer, Kearney told his dad, ''My boys are gonna go crazy out here.'' The army sent a shrink, and Kearney got a wake-up call about his own leadership. He discovered that half his men thought he was playing Russian roulette with their lives and the other half thought he stuck too closely to the rules of engagement. ''The moral compass of the army is the P.L. and the C.O.'' - the platoon leader and the commanding officer, Kearney told me. ''I told every one of my P.L.'s that they have to set that moral standard, that once you slip to the left, you can't pull your guys back in.''

Operation Rock Avalanche
On Oct. 19, Kearney and Battle Company were air assaulted into the insurgents' backyard for a mission that many thought insane. It was called Rock Avalanche and would last about six days. One of its main targets was the village of Yaka China.

Kearney, being the good soldier, tried to pump up his boys with the promise that they would be going after insurgents who had killed their friends and whose grizzled faces were plastered on their bad-guy family-tree wall at the KOP. They would upset the guerrillas' safe haven and their transit routes from Pakistan. They would persuade the villagers to stop harboring the bad guys by offering an $11 million road project that had just been approved by NATO and Kabul and would be built by the Kunar Provincial Reconstruction Team. And they'd complete the ''human terrain mapping'' that is part of the new counterinsurgency doctrine - what families dominate, who's married, who's feuding, are there divisions to be exploited?

It was a lot to ask of young soldiers: play killer, cultural anthropologist, hearts-and-minds winner and then killer again. Which is why, just hours before the mission was to begin, some soldiers were smearing black-and-green war paint on their faces when their sergeant shouted: ''Take it off. Now!'' Why? They'd frighten the villagers.

It seemed a moot point as Rock Avalanche got under way. Apache gunships were scanning the ridges for insurgents. Other helicopters were dropping off more soldiers. An unmanned drone was whining overhead as it sent infrared video feeds to a large screen back at the battalion's headquarters, Camp Blessing, six miles north of the KOP.
Almost immediately, high on a mountainside looking down on Yaka China, Kearney had to play God. In a ditch to his left, Jesse Yarnell, a young intelligence officer, along with John, an Afghan interpreter, were intercepting insurgents on their two-way radios saying, ''We see them, we're going to wait.''
''They're right down there!'' said Kevin Caroon as he gazed out of his night vision. Caroon, from Connecticut and a father of two, was an Air Force JTAC - the joint terminal attack controller who talks the combat pilots onto their targets. ''See that? Two people moving south 400 meters away from us,'' Caroon said, pointing down the mountain face. More insurgents were located nearby.
''Sir, what do you want to do?'' Caroon asked Kearney.
''I want them dead,'' Kearney said.
''Engage them?''
''Yes. Take 'em out.''
Caroon radioed the pilot his instructions, ''On-scene commander's intent is to engage.'' And that was it.
A sudden wail pierced the night sky. It was Slasher, an AC-130 gunship, firing bullets the size of Coke bottles. Flaming shapes ricocheted all around the village. Kearney was in overdrive. The soldiers back at the KOP were radioing in that the drone was tracking 10 men near the tree line. Yarnell was picking up insurgent radio traffic. ''They're talking about getting ready to hit us,'' someone said. The pilot could see five men, one entering a house, then, no, some were in the trees, some inside, and then, multiple houses. He wanted confirmation - were all these targets hostile? Did Kearney have any collateral-damage concerns? Cursing, Kearney told them to engage the men outside but not to hit the house. The pilots radioed back that men had just run inside. No doubt there would be a family. Caroon reminded Kearney that Slasher had only enough fuel to stay in position for 10 more minutes.
''What do you want to do, sir?'' Caroon asked him.
Kearney radioed his soldiers back at the KOP to contact his boss, Lt. Col. Bill Ostlund. Ostlund, a Nebraska social scientist who could switch effortlessly from aggressive bomber to political negotiator talking family values with Afghan tribal elders, was in the crowded tactical-operations room at Camp Blessing watching the drone's video feed and getting the same intelligence. He signed off on collateral damage, and Kearney turned to Caroon: ''Take out the compound. And anyone that comes out.''

Flaming rockets flashed through the sky. Thunder rumbled and echoed through the valley. Then there was a pause. Slasher asked Caroon whether the insurgents were still talking. Kearney shouted over to Yarnell in his ditch, ''You picking anything up?'' Nothing. More spitting rockets.

The night seemed incomprehensible and interminable. Slasher departed and Gunmetal - an Apache helicopter - swept in. Radio communication kept breaking down. At one point the crew of Gunmetal, sensing no hostile intent, refused Kearney's orders to fire. Then suddenly Gunmetal was rocketing at figures scattering for cover. Then Slasher was back in the sky doing more ''work.'' In the predawn light Bone - the nickname for the B-1 bomber that seemed to be the soldiers' favorite - winged in and dropped two 2,000-pound bombs above the village. Finally, around dawn, a weary Kearney, succumbing to gallows humor, adrenaline and exhaustion, said: ''O.K., I've done my killing for the week. I'm ready to go home.''
Kearney estimated that they killed about 20 people, adding: ''I'm not gonna lie. Some are probably civilians.''

In the logic of war, the best antidote for the menacing ghostliness of the ambushing enemy is killing and knowing you've killed them. The soldiers in the Korengal almost never had that kind of satisfaction. Any insurgents, if they were killed, would be buried fast, and all that was left in their wake were wounded civilians. That morning, after a long night of fighting, was no different. Within an hour or so, Lt. Matt Piosa, an earnest, 24-year-old West Point grad, and his patrol were in Yaka China. They radioed that the village elders were asking to bury their dead. They'd also collected wounded civilians. The tally was bad - 5 killed and 11 wounded, all of them women, girls and boys.

Kearney radioed Camp Blessing the bad news and dropped his head between his knees. Killing women and children was tragedy enough. But civilian casualties are also a political issue. If he didn't manage to explain his actions to the Yaka China villagers and get them to understand his intentions, he could lose them to the enemy. Meanwhile, Yarnell and his team were intercepting radio messages like: ''Be very quiet. Move the things over here. Pray for us.'' At least some of the insurgents from the previous night's fight had survived to fight again. The planes were tracking them hiding along a creek. But after the civilian casualties of the night before, senior commanders were refusing to give Kearney clearance to bomb or rocket them.

The short day was fading. The sun dropped behind the peaks. The cold winds rattled our bones. The soldiers tried to make light of their conviction that they'd be attacked by those insurgents dissolving into the villages. Their fears were realized.

Hearts and Minds
To try to acquire allies, Kearney and some of his men flew down the next day to Yaka China. With nowhere else to land, the Black Hawk helicopters descended on the roof of a house not far below the compound that Slasher, the AC-130, had rocketed the night of the 19th. Dust and dried grass whipped across the house and the villagers' faces. Just to endear themselves even more, the soldiers from Battle Company had to step on harvested corn as they climbed down; it was drying on the second story.

The adversaries faced off in the courtyard as chickens sprinted in and out. On one side were Kearney, Ostlund and Larry LeGree, a naval nuclear engineer and head of the Provincial Reconstruction Team, together with their entourage, including interpreters, all in futuristic high-tech gear. On the other side were the Korengali elders, who looked as if they stepped out of ''Lord of the Rings'' with their crooked walking sticks, beards dyed red and blue eyes framed by kohl. With no Afghan government out here, the elders are the only channel for communication. The younger men sat on the ground, wrapped in shawls and bold indifference.

Kearney squatted and told the Korengalis that when he came to this region he hoped to walk into Yaka China and find out what the villagers needed. Instead, he found that there were some 50 insurgents in and around the village. He pointed to the evidence - military radio batteries that his men had found, binoculars, rockets, an old pistol, a small pamphlet titled, in Arabic, ''How to Kill,'' and one in Pashto, ''The Concise Book on the Virtues of Jihad'' - that had been collected in the general area by Afghan soldiers and Americans. It was not a very incriminating haul, and everyone knew it.
The day before, a U.S. medevac had airlifted out the wounded civilians from the village. Humanitarian assistance was air-dropped in, including concrete for retaining walls, rice and blankets for winter. The provisions were not compensation, Kearney told the elders. ''It's what the government does for their people when there is security here,'' he said. He asked them to tell him where in the mountains the insurgents were hiding their supplies. ''That way I don't have to come in here and shoot at you and identify the good guys from the bad guys,'' he said.
To keep his bearings amid the hostile faces, Kearney kept appealing to Haji Zalwar Khan, the leading go-between among the valley's elders. He made his fortune in the timber trade and blamed the Americans for shutting it down. He tried to placate both the Americans and the insurgents. He was not about to side with Kearney in public. ''How can I know where you found these things?'' he asked, referring to the jihadi items. ''In the mountain? The house? How do I know whom they belong to?''

Kearney smiled. He was getting used to the routine between the Americans and the villagers - miscommunication and deception. The encounter felt as much performative, a necessary part of the play, as substantive. And I wondered how Kearney was going to keep his sanity for 10 more months.
Just a week or so earlier, I had been at the KOP when villagers from Aliabad - a mile south of the KOP, and the home village of Haji Zalwar Khan - complained to Kearney that some ordinance had hit a house. Later they sent up the homeowner's teenage son to wrest compensation from Kearney. As we walked to the KOP's entrance to meet the boy, a shot rang out, then another. The bullets smacked the dirt in front of us. Kearney shoved me into a shack where an Afghan was cooking bread. A few more shots were fired. It was ''One-Shot Freddy,'' as the soldiers refer to him, an insurgent shooter everyone had a theory about regarding the vintage of his gun, his identity, his tactics - but neither Kearney's scouts nor Shadow the drone could ever track him. I accidentally slashed my forearm on a nail in the shack and as I watched the blood pool I thought that if I had to live with Freddy and his ilk for months on end I, too, would see a forked tongue in every villager and start dreaming of revenge.

Kearney was angry. ''Taliban shot your house?'' he asked the boy from Aliabad. An interpreter translated.
No, said the boy, Americans did.
''What'd we shoot with?''
''I don't know the weapon, but there's little holes and two big holes.''
''I didn't shoot into Aliabad,'' said Kearney, adding that if one of his soldiers had, it was because insurgents were firing from the village.
''No one shoots from the village," said the boy, though everyone knew insurgents had wounded several of Kearney's soldiers by shooting from the mosque, the cemetery, the school. ...
The boy changed course, ''God knows better than me,'' and that sent Kearney on a riff: ''Yes. God does and God talks to me and told me they do.'' And by the way, hadn't the boy noticed that the bad guys always start shooting first?
''O.K., then shoot them, not our house,'' the boy said.
''Then tell me where the bad guys are,'' Kearney said. The boy said he didn't know. What he knew was that the Americans were always shooting at the village.
This went on for some time. When the boy again protested that no one shoots from his village, Kearney interrupted him. ''Aminullah does,'' he said. Aminullah was a native of Aliabad and a rising figure in the valley's insurgency.
The boy smiled.
''You're smiling because you know I'm right,'' Kearney said.
''You're right,'' the boy said. ''So shoot the cemetery, not our house.''
Kearney moved closer to him. ''Look, if you want help with your house, all you have to do is ask. But don't accuse us every time something goes wrong.''
The boy laughed and repeated that he didn't know where the bad guys were.
''It's crazy, man. They must be ghosts!'' Kearney said, laughing.
''Aminullah doesn't come to Aliabad anymore,'' the boy said, perhaps trying to give Kearney a bone.
Kearney leapt at it. ''So Aminullah is bad?''
''Ah! Finally! We're getting somewhere.'' Kearney took off his helmet and squeezed his hands together and rocked as he sat on a wall. ''What about Mohammad Tali, he's a good guy isn't he?'' Kearney asked.
Smiling again, the boy looked at the dirt: ''No. You already told us he's a bad guy.''
''Ah!'' Kearney said, throwing up his hands. ''So you were down there in the village when I gave radios and food. But instead you say I shoot at you all the time?'' Kearney swung his legs back and forth. ''Hey dude, ask yourself. Why would I bring you radios and food and shoot at you? Does Aminullah? No. What happened that day after I left?'' The boy said all he knew was that the villagers went home and ''they'' started shooting. ''Where?'' Kearney asked, ''from your village?''
''What can I say? The Americans were in my village.''
''Yeah, so I was doing good stuff for you guys and they shot at me. And what I'm trying to say is they could have shot at you again. And if I shoot at your house I'll help. We'll fix up that wall. I'm not here to hurt you.''
Everyone was getting restless in the little check post. Kearney tried to lighten up a bit. He asked the boy what he thought about the Americans.
''You build roads and clinics and schools and are here to help,'' the boy said.
''Cop out,'' Kearney shouted, chuckling. ''Easy answer. Hey dude, you can say we're rotten and messing up your lumber trade.'' The boy laughed. Kearney laughed. Pfc. Michael Cunningham, the radio operator, and Sgt. Taylor White, who always manned the check post, both laughed.
''See, I knew it,'' Kearney said. ''That's what you really think. Think I want to be here?''
''Yeah,'' the boy said. ''I think so.''
''Dude. I got a wife and son. I came here to help you out. If you give me as much help as possible I'll get out of here a hell of a lot faster.''
Kearney told him to enjoy Ramadan, and then shouted, ''Where's my fuzzy friend?'' as he looked about for Jericho, the puppy whose ears were chopped off by an Afghan worker: it was pre-emptive preparation for dog fighting - the ears would just give an enemy dog something to grab onto. ''I need someone to make me happy. Jericho, I need some love.'' Jericho appeared, leaping about. Kearney picked him up. ''Hey, what's up buddy? You're a good boy. You smell like dirt.''

Kearney turned to Cunningham and White and said, ''Well, he's the first to admit Aminullah's bad.'' And give or take a little unreliable information shared here and there, that was the Korengal routine.

Fight Time
The day after the meeting with the elders of Yaka China, Yarnell and John could hear insurgents trying to pinpoint where Kearney and his men were. The helicopters had moved us to a ridge line, about 8,400 feet high, straddling the Korengal and Shuriak Valleys. The insurgents used the deep caves, boulders and forests as hideouts and transit routes between Pakistan and Afghanistan. We could hear someone who called himself Obeid saying he'd do whatever the Yaka China elders decided - whether to cooperate with the Americans or take revenge. By evening the elders had apparently reached their verdict. It was fight time.

Kearney, too, had reached a verdict. He would fool the insurgents, feigning a troop extraction when the helicopters came for resupply and pushing out his best guys in small ''kill teams.'' We heard the insurgents say, ''We have wolves on them,'' meaning spotters. A hoarse, whispering insurgent had eyes on either Sgt. Larry Rougle and his scouts or on Lieutenant Piosa and his rear guard. There was joking that Rougle and Piosa should dance and see which one the whisperer was spying on. Then nothing happened for almost 24 hours.

Rougle - who was called Wildcat - was on his sixth deployment since Sept. 11, 2001. He was with the first group of Rangers in Afghanistan. Even his rough background was something of a legend; he would tell how he grew up in a South Jersey gang, shot a guy, went to ''juvie,'' and there taught himself Russian (though he was estranged from his Russian father), taught himself politics, history, zoology. At night out in the woods, he'd tell his fellow scouts, ''You know penguins are monogamous?''

I hung out with Piosa and his crew. His white skin, red hair and blue eyes belied the months of constant warfare he and his platoon had scraped through. It was a beautiful autumn afternoon and the soldiers were joking around, heating up Meals Ready to Eat, spitting gobs of Copenhagen and then, in a moment, recess was over. The insurgents were on them. Bullets ricocheted all through the woods. A strange silence fell as everyone scrambled for cover. Three of us crouched behind a skinny pine tree. And the silence broke: curses, shouting.
''Where's it coming from?''
''Where are my guys?''
''Jones, are you seeing things?''
More bullets. Cracks against the tree trunks. Bits of confusing information were coming in on Piosa's radio.
''They're comin' up the low ground at 2-4'' - Sergeant Rice's call sign.
''One W.I.A. hit in the arm.'' Then there was panic and screaming.
''The enemy's overtaken the hill,'' bellowed Pvt. Sterling Dunn from further down the trees.
''2-4 is hit'' - that was Rice.
''Wildcat is run over the hill'' - that was Rougle.
''Get a team to run up there and take that hill. They pushed Wildcat over the hill!'' Piosa shouted, trying over and over to reach Rice and Rougle, but getting no answer. The battalion surgeon, Capt. Joel Dean, and a sergeant sprinted up the hill to get to the wounded. As the first Americans neared Rice and Rougle's positions they were fired on from those same positions. What was going on?

I followed Piosa through the brush toward the ridge. We came upon Rice and Specialist Carl Vandenberge behind some trees. Vandenberge was drenched in blood. The shot to his arm had hit an artery. Rice was shot in the stomach. A soldier was using the heating chemicals from a Meal Ready to Eat to warm Vandenberge and keep him from going into shock.

Piosa moved on to the hill where the men had been overrun. I saw big blue-eyed John Clinard, a sergeant from North Carolina, falling to pieces. He worshiped Rougle. ''Sergeant Rougle is dying. It's my fault. ... I'm sorry. ... I tried to get up the hill. ...'' Sergeant Rougle was lying behind him. Someone had already covered him with a blanket. Only the soles of his boots were visible.

''There's nothing you could do,'' Piosa said, grabbing Clinard's shoulder. ''You got to be the man now. You can do it. I need you to get down to Rice and Vandenberge and get them to the medevac.'' Clinard wiped his face, seemed to snap to and headed off through the trees.

Two of Rice's squad mates appeared, eyes dilated. They couldn't believe they'd seen, up close, the ghosts they'd been fighting for the last five months. ''I saw him in the eyes,'' Specialist Marc Solowski said. ''He looked at me. I shot him.'' He and Specialist Michael Jackson had crawled up the hill twice trying to retake it. Each time the insurgents in ''manjammies'' whipped them back with machine-gun fire. There was blood on the stones around us. Some thought they saw blood trailing down toward the village of Landigal, where they were sure an insurgent had dashed into a cottage.
''We're not losing this hill again,'' Piosa shouted. ''This hill is ours!'' He wanted bombs to be dropped immediately.

''There's women praying in that house,'' Dunn shouted back.
I was fixating on Rougle's black hat, lying by the bloodied rock patch where Dunn was sitting, when Sergeant Stichter, Dunn's senior, appeared, out of breath and shaking, back from tending to Vandenberge. He needed water. The F-15 known as Dude was en route, the Apaches were chasing men and Kearney - who had bolted down the mountain, throwing grenades in caves - was barking orders. Kearney was badly shaken. He adored Rougle, and he'd broken down when he saw his big old buddy Rice bleeding at the landing zone. Rice comforted him and then lumbered to the helicopter, just asking to talk to his wife before they put him under.

The insurgents had run off with some of Rougle, Rice and Vandenberge's stuff - ammunition, communication equipment, night vision goggles, machine guns. Kearney wanted the equipment back. He wanted to punish the valley. Stichter had his eyes on a guy pacing a rooftop in Landigal and wanted to blow his head off. Specialist Mitchell Raeon, whose uniform was now soaked in Rougle's blood, had the guy in his scope but couldn't range that far. ''That's a female,'' Dunn said.

Kearney had identified insurgents who'd dashed into a house and wanted to hit them, but Stichter got back word from Camp Blessing saying the target was too close to other houses. Kearney sent back a reminder - you let some guys get away the other night. It was impossible to know for sure, but Kearney believed they were the guys who had killed Rougle, and now, he said, you're going to let another group get away?
Someone cursed, then said, ''They're all leaving the house.''
Kearney radioed down to one of his lieutenants at an observation post. ''Where are they going?'' Yarnell heard the insurgents say they were coming back for the rest of the equipment. And then, with no warning, an F-15 dropped a bomb on Landigal, but off target, or so it seemed. Kearney was furious. He was sure headquarters had intentionally missed the house he had wanted hit.

I noticed Raeon was packing and unpacking Rougle's things. Rougle's scouts were in disarray, rudderless, and admitting it. Raeon said he kept seeing in his mind Rougle's face alert and then dead, switching back and forth; he wanted it to stop.

The next day brought another brief firefight, and Rougle's scouts rallied swiftly. They said they felt him watching and proud. There were more bomb drops and refusals to drop bombs, and then Becky, everyone's favorite Apache pilot, swept in. Not only did she offer the comforting voice of a woman seeping right into their ears, but Becky was one of the most aggressive shooters. She flew up and down the canyon walls seeking out and rocketing insurgents. We heard them on the radio again boasting about retreating to safety under fire. They talked about the strike in Landigal that they thought might have killed Azizullah - ''a real bad guy,'' the radio operator told me.

Kearney was watching a crow flying above us. ''Taliban are right,'' he said. ''Like they said yesterday, follow the birds, they follow the Americans. I wish I was made as strong as haj'' - their nickname for insurgents. ''They were balls to do what they did. And guess what? I'm not gonna lie. They won.''

Killing Together
As we waited for dusk to get back to the KOP, we all knew the insurgents were nearby, eyes on Kearney, eyes on the soldiers down in the valley. Even nightfall was no comfort because the full moon was floodlighting the Korengal. I returned to the KOP by helicopter with Kearney, while 1st and 2nd Platoons had to make the long trek back on foot. As soon as 1st Platoon set off, the insurgents struck with a devastating L-shaped ambush. All Kearney could do, back at the KOP, was calm his boys on the radio, get in the medevac and invoke the gods of war. The Apaches, Slasher and Bone dropped bombs all night. The soldiers and insurgents were so close that when Slasher, the AC-130, flew in, the pilot coordinated not with the JTAC but with Sgt. Roberto Sandifer, the platoon's forward observer, who at that moment was under fire watching one of his guys die.

Around midnight, 1st Platoon filed into the KOP, eyes bulging, drenched in sweat, river water and blood. They were hauling the belongings of Mohammad Tali, a high-value target. Specialist Sal Giunta had killed him.
The next day I climbed up to the KOP and found Specialist Giunta, a quiet Iowan lofted into a heroism he didn't want. His officers were putting him up for a medal of honor. Giunta told me the story of that night, how they'd barely moved 300 yards before they were blasted. Giunta was fourth in the file when it happened, and he jumped into a ditch. He couldn't figure out why they were getting hit from where Joshua Brennan and baby-faced Franklin Eckrode should have been leading up ahead. He knew it must be bad, but as he leapt up to check he got whacked with a bullet in his armored chest plate. It threw him down. They were taking fire from three sides. He grabbed some grenades: ''I couldn't throw as far as Sergeant Gallardo. We were looking like retards and I decided to run out in front of the grenades.'' He found Eckrode with gunshot wounds. ''He was down but moving and trying to fix his SAW'' - a heavy machine gun - ''so I just kept on running up the trail. It was cloudy. I was running and saw dudes. Plural.''

He couldn't figure out who they were. Then he realized they were hauling Brennan off through the forest. ''I started shooting,'' he recalled. ''I emptied that magazine. They dropped Brennan.'' Giunta scrambled up to Brennan. He was a mess. His lower jaw was shot off. ''He was still conscious. He was breathing. He was asking for morphine. I said, 'You'll get out and tell your hero stories,' and he was like, 'I will, I will.'''

They were still taking fire. No one was there to help. Hugo Mendoza, their platoon medic, was back in another ditch, calling: ''I'm bleeding out. I'm dying.'' Giunta saw Brennan's eyes go back. His breathing was bad. Giunta got Brennan to squeeze his hand. A medic showed up out of the sky. They prepared Brennan to be hoisted to the medevac in a basket. Soon he would be dead.

As the medevacs flew out, Sergeant Sandifer had talked in air cover: Slasher, the AC-130. The pilot was a woman and, Sandifer later told me, ''It was so reassuring for us to hear her voice.'' She spotted guys hiding and asked if she was clear to engage. '''You're cleared hot,' I told her. And we killed two people together.'' But, at this point, the killings were no consolation to Sandifer.

As Giunta said, ''The richest, most-trained army got beat by dudes in manjammies and A.K.'s.'' His voice cracked. He was not just hurting, he was in a rage. And there was nothing for him to do with it but hold back his tears, and bark - at the Afghans for betraying them, at the Army for betraying them. He didn't run to the front because he was a hero. He ran up to get to Brennan, his friend. ''But they'' - he meant the military - ''just keep asking for more from us.'' His contract would be up in 18 days but he had been stop-lossed and couldn't go home. Brennan himself was supposed to have gotten out in September. He'd been planning to go back to Wisconsin where his dad lived, play his guitar and become a cop.

Sandifer was questioning why they were sticking it out in the Korengal when the people so clearly hated them. He was haunted by Mendoza's voice calling to him: ''I'm bleeding out. I'm dying.'' He worried that the Korengal was going to push them off the deep end. In his imagination it had already happened. One day an Afghan visited their fire base, Sandifer told me. ''I was staring at him, on the verge of picking up my weapon to shoot him,'' he said. ''I know right from wrong, but even if I did shoot him everyone at the fire base would have been O.K. We're all to the point of 'Lord of the Flies.'" And they still had 10 months to go in the Korengal.

I wondered how Kearney was going to win back his own guys, let alone win over the Korengalis. Just before I left, Kearney told me his biggest struggle would be holding his guys in check. ''I've got too many geeking out, wanting to go off the deep end and kill people,'' he said. One of his lieutenants wanted to shoot every Afghan in the face. Kearney shook his head. He wished he could buy 20 goats and let the boys beat and burn them and let loose their rage. He tried to tell them the restraints were a product of their success - that there was an Afghan government with its own rules. ''I'm balancing plates on my goddamn nose is what I'm doing,'' he said. ''All it's gonna take is for one of these guys to snap.''

But leave the Korengal, as the colonel had suggested, and let some other company deal with it? No way. He'd spent five months learning the valley, getting involved in it; he couldn't just pull out. At least he would keep the insurgents busy here so the other companies could do hearts and minds unimpeded down along the Pech river. ''I lost seven dudes here,'' he told me. ''It's too much blood. I don't want to give this up. This is mine.''

To Be Continued
Colonel Ostlund and his officers, and the governor of Kunar and his officials, held an all-day meeting with the Korengali elders. The elders wanted to talk about Rock Avalanche and the devastation that had rained down on them. Colonel Ostlund told them, ''If anything should happen to Captain Kearney, pain and misery will knock on many doors in the Korengal.'' He gave them 10 days to pick sides - the insurgents or the government. Only then would he consider going ahead with the road project. Their answer came back. They would leave the valley altogether. But they didn't, and 10 days later insurgents pulled off another ambush of a platoon from the 173rd. The entire patrol went down, either wounded or killed. Kearney told me recently that they had wounded Abu Ikhlas and killed some other bad guys. He said he was pretty sure that Haji Matin, the embittered timber lord, had been killed, too. But the dialogue with the Korengalis was pretty much the same as it had been. Only the winter snows have brought some minor respite to the valley.

-- Jillian Dunham
Research Editor
The New York Times Magazine

Thursday, February 21, 2008

Oregon Republican League: History 104 Biographies

Oregon Republican League: History 104 Biographies

Every Wednesday/Thursday, the Oregon Republican League will post the biographies of important figures, in the League's/State of Oregon's history. Feel free to comment or share stories of your family's Republican affiliation.

An Illustrated History of Umatilla County & Morrow County, by Colonel William Parsons and W. S. Shiach with a brief outline of the early history of the State of Oregon. W. H. Lever, Spokane, WA, (1902), p. 354-355.

LEWIS M. HUSON. - Few are now living who came earlier to this western country than this estimable citizen and worthy pioneer whose name we gladly incorporate in this record of Umatilla county. In the early ‘fifties he sought the California gold fields, where for three years he delved for hidden treasure, and at the time of the Fraser river exodus went thither also in the employ of the American Tunnel Company. From that point he returned to Puget Sound and entered the employ of the government as assistant surveyor under Major Tilton. In this capacity he helped to sectionize all of Lewis and Thurston and a part of King counties. From this he turned, in 1858, to Walla Walla and lived there for four years. For twenty years he visited various sections of the country until satisfied with his explorations he came back to Umatilla county and took up a homestead and pre-emption where he now lives, six miles northwest from Helix. Thrift and economy have enabled him to add to his real estate until he now owns one whole section, which he cultivates to wheat principally. The Washington White variety finds favor with him, and his average yield is thirty bushels per acre annually. Sufficient stock for the necessities of the farms is all that he raises. His farm presents the appearance of thrift and wisdom used in its culture. Taste and good judgment are displayed in the improvements, such as a good comfortable residence, substantial outbuildings and necessary equipage.

On February 22, 1853, Miss Jane McMillan and Mr. Huson were married. Her parents were Archibald and Mary J. McMillan. The following children have been born to them: Elizabeth, married to Charles Parish; Neina B., married to C. C. Anderson; Lewis E.; Charles P.; Myrtle, married to C. B. Haun; John C.; William C.; and Pearl and an infant, the last two being dead. His fraternal affiliations are with the Maccabees and the U. F. of F. U. He is also an exempt fireman from the Walla Walla department. It was Mr. Huson who drew the petition for the formation of the First Washington Artillery. In political matters Mr. Huson is widely and favorably known, being a Republican, having once, however, been with the Populists. Ever active in attendance upon the conventions that proper men should be placed upon the tickets, but never accepting office for himself, he was won, in the hearts of the people, an enviable reputation for unselfishness and hearty activity for the good of all.

Mr. Huson was born to Calvin and Betsy (Crego), on April 5, 1836,in New York state. His early education was excellent, attending the Lina Academy and later graduating from the Dundee Academy, and then at the early age of seventeen engaged in teaching in Virginia. The same mental vigor and keen perception that characterized his early years of precocity have ever been leading factors in his life and have stamped him, as he justly deserves, a leader among men.

Friday, February 15, 2008

From a whisper, to a ROAR: The Conservative Majority Project

Red Tide Rising:

Individual Responsibility, Limited Government, Constitutional Democracy, Property Rights, and The Free Market.

Any Questions?

Thursday, February 14, 2008

Oregon Republican League: History 104 Biographies

Oregon Republican League: History 104 Biographies

Every Wednesday/Thursday, the Oregon Republican League will post the biographies of important figures, in the League's/State of Oregon's history. Feel free to comment or share stories of your family's Republican affiliation.

An Illustrated History of Umatilla County & Morrow County, by Colonel William Parsons and W. S. Shiach with a brief outline of the early history of the State of Oregon. W. H. Lever, Spokane, WA, (1902), p. 345-346.

CHARLES D. HASCALL.- This esteemed and substantial stockman, an epitome of whose career it is our privilege now to trace, is a man of probity and integrity, who has wrought faithfully within the precincts of Umatilla county, where he stands high in the estimation of all and demeans himself worthy of the confidence placed in him.

In Oneida county, New York, on February 22, 1837, he was born to William C. and Finetta (Storm) Hascall, natives of the same state. When three years of age he was taken to Rutland, Vermont, with the balance of the family, where his father followed farming. Here he received a good education in the public and private schools and assisted his father on his farm until he became of age. His first venture after this time was working for wages, at which he continued for three years, using such rigid economy that he then was enabled to purchase a farm for himself of one hundred acres, near Durham, Maine. For eight years succeeding this he was employed in improving and operating this farm, which he then sold and returned to Rutland and engaged for wages in the marble quarries. For ten years he continued this, and then came to Oregon in 1886, and located on Birch Creek, where he now owns three hundred and twenty acres. This excellent tract he farms mostly to hay for his large herds of cattle, being exceptionally successful in this industry.

On October 11, 1859, he was married to Miss Ellen C. Warner, native of Rutland, Vermont, at which place, also, their wedding occurred. To them have been born the following children: Fred W., Arthur E., James H. and Eugene M.; also Sarah Finetta, deceased, and buried in Pittsford, Vermont. Mr. Hascall and his family are connected with the Baptist church, but since there is no representation of that organization in Pilot Rock, they are identified with true Christian work of whatever denomination. He receives and merits the trust reposed in him, and by his upright life in whatever capacity he is called to move sets forth a fine example for the rising generation. In the affairs that pertain to the welfare of all, such as local, school and political, he manifests a worthy interest, allying himself with the Republican party, believing that is more nearly sets forth the principles he deems proper to set in function.

Thursday, February 07, 2008

Oregon Republican League: History 104 Biographies

Oregon Republican League: History 104 Biographies

Every Wednesday/Thursday, the Oregon Republican League will post the biographies of important figures, in the League's/State of Oregon's history. Feel free to comment or share stories of your family's Republican affiliation.

An Illustrated History of Umatilla County & Morrow County, by Colonel William Parsons and W. S. Shiach with a brief outline of the early history of the State of Oregon. W. H. Lever, Spokane, WA, (1902), p. 342-343.

ROBERT JAMIESON.--This prosperous farmer and banker and representative citizen of Umatilla county has long been noted for his enterprise in business and for his public-spirited interest in the welfare of the community in which he has lived. Inasmuch as it is the province of this work, among other things, to preserve brief biographical records of the founders and builders of the county and those who have materially contributed toward its progress, it is but consistent that a brief review of this gentleman be here given.

Mr. Jamieson was born in the province of Ontario, Canada West, as it was formerly called. His parents, John and Jane (Hastie) Jamieson, both natives of Scotland, were old pioneers of Oregon, having come to Marion county as early as 1860. They settled on a farm on the bank of a river, and
were “washed out” during the winter of 1861-2.

After a residence of a year there our subject went to the Boise mines, bent upon digging a fortune out of the ground. He was not successful, however, so wisely determined to try his hand in another part and at a different occupation. So he came to Walla Walla, Washington, and entered the employ of Snyder & Reed, in whose sawmill he worked for four years. With the savings of this long continued service he purchased a farm near Weston, which is still his and which he is now farming to wheat.

In 1892 Mr. Jamieson assisted in the organization of the Farmers’ Bank of Weston, of which he has ever since been president. It is a prosperous and substantial financial concern, reflecting credit upon its management, and especially upon its efficient head officer. Mr. Jamieson is also agent at Weston for the Pacific Elevator Company and has been for the past six years.

Our subject has ever taken a deep interest in politics, attending many Republican conventions. No desire for personal aggrandizement or preferment animates him, however, for he has invariably refused office whenever it has been offered to him.

Fraternally Mr. Jamieson is affiliated with the time-honored and world-wide order of Free Masons, and with that excellent insurance order, the Workmen, in both of which he is quite prominent. In Umatilla county, Oregon, in 1879, he married Miss Jennie Walker, a daughter of John and Jane Walker, natives of Scotland. Their union has been blessed by the advent of two children, Willie and Ethel J. Mrs. Jamieson came from Canada in 1877.