Nelson Wayne Durham.

History of the city of Spokane and Spokane County, Washington : from its earliest settlement to the present time (Volume 3) online

. (page 1 of 84)
Online LibraryNelson Wayne DurhamHistory of the city of Spokane and Spokane County, Washington : from its earliest settlement to the present time (Volume 3) → online text (page 1 of 84)
Font size
QR-code for this ebook


3 3433 08178491 4









From Its Earliest Settlement to the Present Time









2 1916 L

Th£ NiVfc- YORK


TH.»»H F0UHDA1 .




Starting out in life with liss opjjortiiiiity <ir ((iiiipiiH iit tli.iii tin .-ivcrafrc Anur-
icaii hoy, liiit I vidciitly jjossessed of an optimism .•uui di lirniiiiatiDii wliicli i iialilcd
liiiii t(i triimipii over many adverse situations and discourafrcmi iits, Kdiurt K(himMd
Stialiorn lias followed the lead of his o))|)ortnniti(s, doing as best he could any-
thing that came to hand, and creating and seizing legitimate .advantages as they
have arisen. He has never hesitated to take a forward step when the way was
open. I'ortunate in Jjossessing a degree of earnestness and frankness that have
inspired confidence in otiiers, the simple weigiit of his eliaraeti-r and aliilitv have
earried llini into important relations %vith large intirests and lie is now the i)resi-
dent of several important railway and otlier corjiorations with headcjuarters in
.•^pokaTic. The North Coast Railroad project especially owes its inception and
prosecution to him and is constituting a most important element in business activity
tlirougliout the northwest.

.Mr. .Str.iliorn horn in Center county. I'ennsylv.uii.i. M.iy l.j, ]8.V2. The
family is of Scotch- Irish origin and the ancestry in Amerii'.a is tr.iced li.iek to the of our subject, who in colonial days came from Scotl.aiid to the
new world and afterward aided in obtaining American liberty in the Revolutionary He continued a resident of Union county, Pennsylvania, until his death and
his son .Samuel .Str.ahorn, grandfather of our subject, .also made his honii' in that
county. The f.ather, Thomas F. Strahorn, there born .and re.ared, b.iriii d the
trades of a millwright and machinist and in 1856 removed from Center count v,
Pennsylvania, to I'"ree))ort. Illinois, and nine years later became a resident of
.Sedalia, Missouri. In 1878 he crossed tlu' Rockies, following in the foolstips of
his sou who preceded in 1870, .and .after residing for .i time in Idaho and
Moiil.iii.i lie lucame .a resident of Los Angeles, California, where he p.assed .aw.iv
m 188;i. His wife, who bore the m.aidi n n.iiiie of Hi In cea I'.iiiiiii rt. born in
Center county, Pennsylv.ania, ;ind of Dutch line.ige. .i (l.auglit<r of .lohn I'ln-
mert, who had come to this country from .Switzerl.and. The death of .Mrs. .Strahorn
iieciirred in 1861.

Robert E. .Strahorn sjjcnt the first four years of his life in the state of his
nativity and then t.iketi by bis ji.arents to northern Illinois, where the period
of his youth was passed in village .and f.arm life where his work of tin- li.rd-
cst. His educational privileges were very limited, as he attended school only until
ten years of .age. Private reading and study, however, eonst.antly bro.adened his
knowledge and the studious li.aliits of his youlli li.iM' ui.ide liiin ,i iii.iii oi «iil'-
general inform.ation. In the school of experieiica', too, lie learned m.ariy v.alu.alib'
lessons which have jiroven of significant worth in bis adv.anceinent in th<' busi-
ness world. In his boyhood days, after bis life on tin- f.arm. In- first sold p.apirs



uii tile streets and tlit-ii began learning the |>rinter'.s trade in Setlalia. Missouri,
following that occupation for five years. Subsequent to his removal to Denver,
Colorado, in 1870, he was engaged in newspaper work as reporter, editor and
correspondent until 1877. During the Sioux war of 1875-6 in Wyoming and
Montana, he was \ritli General Crook as special correspondent of the New York
Times, Chicago Tribune and Denver News, personally participating in the fight-
ing in all of the engagements witii tiie Indians, the secretary of war commending
him for his gallantry and helpfulness to the government. Moreover, he wrote most
interesting accounts of that frontier warfare, which was needed in quelling the
Indians in their hostile resentment of the incoming civilization.

While pursuing the journalistic profession Mr. Strahorn became interested in
and to some extent identified with the railway business, accomi^anying as corre-
sjiondent several surveying parties and also performing publicity work for the
Denver & Rio Grande, the Colorado Central and the Union Pacific Railroad Com-
panies. This opened up to him the opportunity of entering into active connec-
tion with railway interests and he organized and conducted the publicity bureaus
of the Union Pacific and Kansas Pacific Companies, during which period, from
1877 until 1881, he resided much of the time in Omaha and in Denver. He was
also engaged in a confidential capacity in work relating to the extension of lines
for the Union Pacific, this carrying him by stage, horseback and on foot into
almost every county of every state and territory west of the Missouri river and
brought to him his wide knowledge of the conditions and the opportunities of the
west. His next step in the business world brought him into intimate connection
with town-site, irrigation and power enterprises in Idaho, Oregon and Washington
and when six years had passed in that way he returned to the east, settling in
Boston, Massachusetts, in 1890. Through the succeeding eight years he devoted
his attention to the negotiation of municipal bonds but since 1898 has perma-
nently resided in Spokane, where he again became actively interested in develop-
ment projects, his special lines of operation being in connection with the construc-
tion and operation of waterworks, power and electric plants and irrigation. Those
interests still, claim his attention and energies to a considerable extent and have
constituted a significant force in the improvement and upbuilding of the districts
in which he has operated. His enterprise and executive ability in recent years
have, moreover, brought him into prominence in railway connections as the promo-
ter and builder of the North Coast Railroad. He undertook to prosecute that
project in the spring of 1905 with the result that in the fall of that year a com-
pany was organized and the engineering and construction work has since proceeded
steadily. The system is designed to bring Seattle, Tacoma and Portland on the
west into direct connection with Walla Walla and Spokane on the east and includes
a new short line between Spokane and Walla Walla and another between Spokane
and Lewiston, Idaho, and, with its branches, is to have a total length of seven
hundred and fifty miles. Throughout practically the whole existence of the com-
pany Mr. Strahorn has been its president and active manager. The value of the
project is recognized by every business man of this section and its worth as a
developing factor of Washington can scarcely be overestimated. In connection
with this, Mr. Strahorn has organized the Spokane Union Terminal project which
will center five railways in one grand passenger terminal and provide for their
concentration along one central zone through the heart of the city, with all surface


or gradf crossiiii^s cliiiiiiiattcl. In workiii); tliis out In- DviTcanif ohstaclcs wliicli
in tin- ag}{r»gatf wire almost appallinj;.

The North Coast Railroad project lias soinctiuics been callrd tlir railway
romance of our time and our subject, its central fipirc, the "S])hinx" and "Man
of Mystery" because of the very unusual and unicjue manner of its financing and
building, involving many millions of dollars, without the identity of Mr. Strnhorn's
financial backers becoming known. The war m.adc uj>on him by rival railway in-
terest.s- and otli<rs bent upon unmasking and defeating him has been :\ sensation
of large magnitude in tin I'aeirie iiortli west, .iiid prolvably more tli;iii aiiv otlier of
Mr. Strahorn's undertakings has eiiipii.isi/.i-d iiis tine jioise, unfaltering |)iirsiiit of
an undertaking once decided upon and bis undying devotion to any trust iiii)>osed
in liiiii, .'IS Well as Ills modesty in success. I..ite in tlie \car liMO. win ii tin'
larger matters desired had been accomplished, this ban of secrecy was ninoved
.ind it develojied that Mr. .Strahorn been the confidential agent of .Mr. Ilarri-
nian from the first .iiid tin North H.iilroad t nterprise wa.s consolidated with
other H.' lines in the northwest under the n.imc of the Oregon-\\';ishington
Railroad & Navigation Company, and Mr. Str.ahorn made vice-president of the
larger corporation.

In order to ajipreciatc some of the accomplishments of this railroad builder
be it stated that several hundred miles of siir\-ey( d .ind in )).irt constructed
have been paid for. to the extent of sixcral iiiillioii dolLirs. hv the elii ek
of .Mr. Strahorn. A thousand miles of surveyed lines, a hundred miles completed
in tin- Yakima valley, trains ojierating on (lortions of, .ire .1 few of the things
that li.i\c been ;iecoiiiplishe(l in an ineredilily short time .-iiid in the face of trriiieiid-
ous odds and ojiposition. There has been built one bridge two tlious.uid nine hun-
dred feet long s|)aiining the Columbi.a ; .inothcr over the ."snake will be four tlwui-
s.ind .ind seM-nty feet long and two hundred and seventy-five feet high, probably
the highest over any large river in the L'nited .States, and this bridge will li.ive
ten million pounds of steel used in its construction. Mr. Str.ihorn will erect in
the city of Spokane alone one bridge one hundred .ind sixty-fivi- feet high and three
thousand feet long; .another one hundred and seventy-five feet high .ind oiu- thou-
s;md fi-et long, and both to be marvelous engineering feats.

.More recently these interests have organized the West Coast Railway designed
to do important construction .across the Cascade mount.-iins, with Mr. Str.ahorn as
president, .and also the Yakima V.allev Tr.insport.ition Company, which is build-
ing ini)iorl.iMt ele<'lrie railw;i\- lines under his (iirrelion. Among liis iii.iny inipurl.iiit
|)erson;il enterprises are the Northwest Light & W'.ater Conijiany. owning w.iter-
|)ower, electric lighting .and w.iterworks jilants in various cities of Oregon. W'.ishing-
ton .-iiid Idaho; the ^'akiini \'.allev Power (dnip.iiiy. which has built t lectric trims-
mission lines one iiundred .and ten miles in length, conneetiiig up .ind furnishing
electric power to all the cities of the Yakim.a v.alley .-md Pasco; .and the Pasco
Reclamation Company, which is irrigating .md ollnrwise developing large areas
of orch.ird l.mds surrounding the city of P.isco. Hesiiies fin.ancing .and being presi-
dent .and m.aii.ager of these .and other companies. .Mr. Str.ahorn has found time to
engage in m.inv other .icti\ities in connection with ( umiuercial oi'g.ini/,;itions through-
out the northwest.

On the lyth of September, 1877, -Mr. Str.ihorn w;is married to .Miss Carrie


Adell Green, a daugliter of Dr. J. W. Green, of Marengo, Illinois, whose social
graces and literary attainments (the latter best evidenced b}- her authorship of the
popular volume "Fifteen thousand miles by stage") are eloquent testimonials to
the credit her husband so freely accords her for a large measure of his success.

Mr. Strahorn is a valued member of several social organizations, including the
Spokane Club, Spokane Athletic Club, the Inland Club and the Spokane Country
Club, and for several years he has been a trustee of the Spokane Chamber of Com-
merce, cooperating in all of its practical plans for the development of the city.
His genial nature, ever-ready helpfulness and philanthropy have given him a large
place in the hearts of his fellow citizens. !Mr. Strahorn is a man of well balanced
capacities and powers, without any of that genius which is liable to produce erratic
movements resulting in unwarranted risk and failure. He is eminently a man of
business sense, of well balanced mind, even temper and conservative habits, and
possesses that kind of enterprise that leads to great accomplishments and benefits
others more than himself.


Carrie Adell (Green) Strahorn. wife of Robert E. Straliorn, of Spokane, is a
native of Marengo, McHenry county, Illinois, being the second daughter of Dr.
John W. and Louise Babcock Green. Her parents were pioneers of northern Illi-
nois, her father having removed in 1846 from Greenfield, Ohio, of which place Dr.
Green's parents were founders. These grandjiarents of Mrs. Strahorn, on her
father's side, were descendants of prominent patriots of like name of the Revolu-
tionary war. Her mother, who died in ^Marengo in 1899, was a native of Lavonia
Center, New York, and was a descendant of Aaron Burr. Dr. John W. Green,
]\Irs. Strahom's father, who died in Chicago in 1893, was for fifty 3-ears one of the
most noted surgeons of the Mississippi valley. He was the first surgeon to admin-
ister an anesthetic west of Chicago. He served with great distinction during tlie war
of the Rebellion, first as regimental surgeon of the Ninety-fifth Illinois, and later
as brigade and finally as division surgeon with General Grant in the Army of the
Tennessee. ^Irs. Green accompanied her husband throughout the famous Red river
campaign, sharing every danger of field and hospital.

Carrie Adell Green had the advantage of the public schools of Marengo, supple-
mented by a liberal education in the higher branches at Ann Arbor. Developing an
ardent love for music, she studied to good purpose under some of the foremost
American and European vocal masters, and thus, when wedded to Robert E. Stra-
horn, at Marengo, September 19, 1877, she possessed to an unusual degree the
graces and refinements and all the wholesome attributes and practical helpfulness
of the sensibh' reared young womanhood of those days.

It is not too much to say that Carrie Adell Strahorn has well maintained the
lofty traditions of the sturdy, heroic stock of pioneers, patriots and state builders
of her ancestry. A superb, home-loving, womanly woman always, yet she has had
so much to do with the development of the frontier that her public life and ac-




coiuijlislinunts have been tlie iiisi)ir.iti(>ii and pride of many communities in the
Rocky .Mountain and Pacific coast states. It has been well said of her that she
has "motlicred tlie west. "

Inimediatelv after her marria^je in 1877 slic set out with lur Inishand on tlie
often dangerous and romantic, and always toilsome career (in a field covering nearly
half our continent) the brighter aspects of which are so vividly ix)rtraycd in her
famous book '■Fifteen Thousand .Miles by Stage," which was jiubiished in 1911 by
G. P. Putnam's Sons.

Proliaiilv no other woman has so thoroughly ex))orienecd every )ihase of far west
cx|)lor;ition and genuine pioneering. This, covering a period of thirty-four years
while the west has been in the making, has gone through all gradations from the
wildi-rness haunts of the hostile savage along through the rudest camps of the miner
and cowbov to zealous, ])ractical partieii)ation in colonization, and town and city
building in many waste i>laees, often in advance of the railways. Tliis work
was particularly noticeable and effective from 1877 to 1880 in Nebraska, Colorado
and ^^'yonling, and from 1880 to 1890 in Utaii, Montana, Idaho and Washington.
From 1890 to 1898, while Mr. Strahorn transferred his activities largely to New
England, .Mrs. .Strahorn pursued her nnisical and literary studies in Boston. Dur-
ing tliis period however, the .Straliorn's spent a |>ortion of each year in Spokane and
vicinity, or elsewhere in the Rocky Mountains. .Since 1898. win n they located per-
manently in Spokane, Mrs. Strahorn lias been everything in the life and growth
of the city and state that might be expected from one so fully equipiicd and so
ardently in love with the Pacific fpast country and its institutions.

Heing a frequent contributor to the coliHuns of various eastern ))ub]ieations dur-
ing all these years, she has made the most of many opportunities to faithfully jjor-
tray the leading characteristics of far, wast Hfe and development, never failing to
award due praise to the heroic M'oirk-of tlio' jjionee'rs, as well as to enthusiastically
strive for wider recognition of the merits of western resources and institutions, and
our climatic, scenic and other attractions.

The camp or home of the .Strahorns lias always been ;i landmark of hospitality
and a rallying point for the creation and nourishing of jmblic spirit and the strenu-
ous promotion of every good cause. Not a few of the far west's foremost men in
business, ]irofessional and (lolitieal life, join her noted husband in gratefully ascrib-
ing much of their success to Mrs. Straliorn's untiring encour.igemeiit and general
helpfulness in hir home, social and public activities at the period in their lives when
such helj) meant everything to them. .She has also accomiilislii-d much in church
building and in the founding and sup)V)rt of educational and eharitable institutions.
Notwithstanding the success, financially and otherwise, of Mr. .Strahorn, and her
)5rominent place and hearty ]>artiei))ation in the social life of .S])okane, Mrs. Stra-
horn has not relaxed in lur devotion to these more useful and serious things and is
still actively engaged in liter.iry jjursuits.


Edward Franklin Waggoner is the iiresidiiit of the L'nion Fuel & Ice Coiniiany
of Spokane, with offices at 107 S))rague avenue. He was born in Lostant, Illinois,
February, 15, 1870, and acquired his early education in the public schools there,


while spending liis yoiitliful days in the liome of liis parents, John G. and Sarah
E. (Cox) Waggoner. He was afterward sent to Eureka College at Eureka, Illi-
nois, and when he had put aside his text-books he became a clerk in a store there.
The next step in his business career brought him into close connection with the
McCormick Harvesting Machine Company as traveling salesman and collector, in
which capacity he traveled for them in Indiana, Illinois and Kentucky. He dis-
played notable ability in all branches of the harvesting machinery business, thereby
winning the position of general agent and manager of the company's business in
AVashington. Oregon, Idaho, Montana and a part of Wyoming. In 1903 the Inter-
national Harvester Company was formed, taking over the ^IcCormick Harvesting
Machine Company and Mr. Waggoner was continued in charge of the business
until October 15. 1906, when he resigned to enter upon an independent business
venture, organizing the Union Fuel & Ice Company, of which he has since been
president. The company was established as a wholesale and retail business. The
business has grown steadily and substantially since its inception and is now one
of the important and prosperous commercial undertakings of Spokane, doing a
business of nearly a half million dollars in 1911.

Mr. Waggoner is also trustee and secretary of the Masonic Temple Association
and it was he who as the master of Spokane Lodge No. 34., F. & A. M., conceived
the project of erecting a Masonic Temple in Spokane and assisted in the forma-
tion of the association which erected the temple. He acted as secretary of the
board of trustees and as chairman of its finance committee from the outset until the
tem|3le was completed, and his work in this connection has received warm com-
mendation. The association was formed in 1901 ; ground for the temple was
broken by President Roosevelt on the 26th day of May, 1903; the corner stone
was laid October 6. 1904.; and the building was dedicated June 14, 1906. Mr.
Waggoner is one of the best known and most prominent Masons of the state, tak-
ing an active part in the work of the order and ever upholding the high standard
which has been maintained by this fraternity. He belongs to and is past master
of Spokane Lodge, No. 34, F. & A. M.; is a member and past high priest of Spo-
kane Chapter, No. 2, R. A. M.; and belongs to Spokane Council, No. 4, R. & S. M.;
Cataract Commandery, No. 3, K. T. ; Oriental Consistory, No. 2, S. P. R. S.; and
El Katif Temple, A. A. O. N. M. S. He has been awarded high honors in the
order and was grand master of the state of Washington in 1906-7. He likewise
belongs to Spokane Lodge, No. 228, B. P. O. E.; Samaritan Lodge, No. 52,
I. O. O. F.; Spokane Council, No. 92, United Commercial Travelers; and is a
Woodman of tlie World.

In addition to his other business interests he is a director and a member of the
executive committee of the International Casualty Company and also a director in
the Western Soap Company, one of Spokane's largest manufacturing institutions.
He is now serving for the second term as a trustee of the Chamber of Commerce
and has cooperated readily and effectively in its measures and plans for promoting
public progress. His political allegiance is given to the Republican party and he
takes an active and helpful interest in its work, yet would never consent to be-
come a candidate for office. He wields an influence which is all the stronger, per-
haps, because it is moral rather than political, and is exercised for the public weal
rather than for personal ends.

On the 16th of February, 1898. Mr. Waggoner was married, in Chicago, to


Miss NcIIif Mc'KihIxii. a daiiglitiT of Ciptnin .1. M. and Marparct McKiblit-ii, of
Sliilliyvilli-. Illinois. Tlicy have two iliildrtn. Edward F.; Jr., and Marpirct. In
tlic social circles of Spokane tlicy arc well known and the Iiospitality of the best
homes is cordially extended tlicni. His business interests have brought him a wide
acquaintance in the northwest and through Masonry he has become even mori'
widely known, standing as a ))r(iiiiiiii iit representative of that ordir which has ever
inculcated principles of high .nid honorable maidiood and promoted good citizenship.


S. A. Stanfield is one of the widely known residents of Lincoln county, who has
been more or less actively identified with the agricultural and business interests of
Odessa for more tlian twenty years. He was born in Umatilla comity, Oregon, on
February 10. I8C<), and is a son of Robert N. and Phoebe (.\twood) Stanfield.
natives of Illinois. In the early '50s they crossed the ))lains to Cilifornia. whence
tiny l.iti r nuioved to Oregon, settling in Liiiatill.i eotiiitv wlim- the father liled on
some government land and engaged in agricultural pursuits.

The early years of S. A. .St;infield did not differ save in details from those of
other lads re.ari-d on ranches on tlie frontier at that ]>eriod. He atli iidid the public
schools in the acquirement of an education until he was eighteen years of age, and
when not engaged with his studies assisted his father with the operation of the
ranch. By the time In- att.iined his ni.iturity he thoroughly familiar with
the practical methods of tilling the fields aiul caring for the stock. In 1887, he en-
gaged in stock raising for three years, meeting with very good success. At the
expiration of that period, in 1890, he came to Lincoln county and filed on a home-
stead near Odessa, and for fourteen years devoted his entire time and energy to
the cultivation and im|)rovement of this place. As he is a man of ))r;ictical ideas
who intelligently directs his efforts toward the accomplishment of a definite ))ur-
posi-. he ))r()sj)ered in his undertakings. He brought his land into a high state of
productivity and erected good substantial l)arns and outbuildings as well as a com-
fort.ible residence on his r.ineh, nuiking it one of the attractive and valuable prop-
erties of that section. In 1901- he disposed of it and withdrawing from agricultural
pursuits removed to Odessa. Here he establislii-d a meat m.irk< t that he con-
ducted with very good success for two years, and then disjiosed of it. .\fter selling
his business hi' went to Orant county. U'.isliington, .md bought a section of l.iiid
that 111- eultiv.ited for about :\ year. Renting this pro])erty in li)07. he p.issed the

Online LibraryNelson Wayne DurhamHistory of the city of Spokane and Spokane County, Washington : from its earliest settlement to the present time (Volume 3) → online text (page 1 of 84)