Copyright
George Henry Tinkham.

History of Stanislaus County California : with biographical sketches of the leading men and women of the county who have been identified with its growth and development from the early days to the pres online

. (page 87 of 177)
Online LibraryGeorge Henry TinkhamHistory of Stanislaus County California : with biographical sketches of the leading men and women of the county who have been identified with its growth and development from the early days to the pres → online text (page 87 of 177)
Font size
QR-code for this ebook


their horses, but they followed them up, and when the Indians were hard pressed they
abandoned the stolen property, much to the satisfaction of the emigrants. Taking the
old Oregon trail into eastern Oregon, Benjamin Halley engaged in stock raising in
Union County and later in Wallowa County, where he improved a farm. However,
he returned to Union County and there resided until his death. A son, Edward
Halley, now owns and operates the ranch. In those early days the families of that
region had many experiences with Indian troubles, being obliged to be on the con-
tinual watch for savage treachery.

Arabelle Halley, after completing the grammar school, attended Blue Mountain
University. Soon after their marriage Mr. and Mrs. McAlister continued the stock
business in Wallowa County, purchasing land near Enterprise, where they were very
successful, and as they prospered they purchased land until they had over 1,000 acres,
well located, with a splendid range accessible. Here he ranged his herd of Aberdeen
Polled Angus cattle, for he was the first in that section to bring in the Black Aberdeen
Polled Angus cattle from Missouri. At first other cattlemen laughed at him, but he
was convinced of their superior quality as beef cattle and he kept on and in time he
demonstrated that they would outweigh the other cattle and eventually he won out
as having the best beef cattle on the range. Others finally saw their mistake and they
organized the Aberdeen Angus Association, and the result is that in that section they
use thoroughbred Aberdeen Angus sires and hence have a splendid quality of cattle
that have taken more prizes than all others the last years. Mr. McAlister naturally
was one of the organizers and a most valued and enthusiastic member. The Mc-
Alister ranch was known as the Romance Ranch, beautifully located on the Wallowa
River, and was also watered by Hurricane Creek. A ditch was taken out seven miles
up in the mountains and water brought down for irrigating their field of alfalfa.
Mr. McAlister was also engaged in raising Hampshire sheep and he became well and
favorably known as a successful and enterprising stockman, as well as a prominent man
in civic and educational affairs. From a youth he had a great love for the outdoors
and particularly hunting and he became known as a fine shot. He has had much
pleasure hunting bear, elk and deer, and has killed scores of them as well as numerous
wildcats, and it is interesting to hear him tell of his numerous experiences.

In 1907 Mr. and Mrs. McAlister made their first trip to California, locating at
Turlock, where he purchased a beautiful home at 730 West Main Street, where they
have since made their home, making trips to Oregon in the summer to look after his
ranch, as he still retains 600 acres of fine farm land. In 1919 he sold his cattle and
now rents his lands to his son.

Mr. and Mrs. McAlister have been blessed with two children: Chas. A., who
is farming the home ranch, is married to Olive Johnson and they have two children,
Frances Belle and James Joseph ; Leeann is Mrs. C. M. Graham, and resides in Port-
land. Mr. McAlister was made a Mason in Wallowa Lodge, F. & A. M., of which







Online LibraryGeorge Henry TinkhamHistory of Stanislaus County California : with biographical sketches of the leading men and women of the county who have been identified with its growth and development from the early days to the pres → online text (page 87 of 177)