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~ Our Van Bibber Family From Indiana~

~A Letter From George Luther Boone~

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Indenture Agreement~Raymond Van Bibber
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~A Letter From George Luther Boone~

The following pages is a copy of a letter written by George Luther Boone to the Oregon historian, Eva Emery Dye.

George Luther Boone, Great-grandson of Daniel Boone, married Mourning Ann Young, March 31, 1852. George was 26, Mourning Ann was 13. They had 14 children. They settled on a land grant on Yaquina bay, and here, on a promontary, they built a great white house that could be seen for several miles.  The apples from their fine orchard, and the delicate native oysters that grew in great beds in the shallow waters adjacent to the land, were well known in San Francisco where they were delivered by sailing vessel.

                                                           ~

Mrs. Eva Emma Dye Oregon City

Dear Madam. Your favor of the 14th inst Received. Asking me to give you a sketch of our Family, as I am a very Poor hand to Write I will try and do the best I can. In Order to make things as Plain as I can I will begin as far Back as I can Recollect. My Fathers Name was Alphonso Boone. Born in Kentucky he being the son of Jessie Boone. Jessie Boone being the son of Daniel Boone. Making Daniel Boone my Great Grand Father. I never saw my Grand Father only an Oil Painting Life size he left with his sister Harriet Baber in Jefferson City Mo. Hiram Baber was Secretary of State. There was but One of Daniel Boones sons that I Ever saw, that was Col. Nathan Boone belonging to the Army he being Daniel Boones youngest son, Was stationed at Fort LeaVenworth when I left the states in 1848. Albert Gallatin Boone was a Brother of my Father he Lived in Westport, Jackson Co. Mo. 4 Miles from Kansas City, was in the Mercantile Business there for several yearshe moved to Colorado he Died in Denver City. My Father had Four sisters Harriet Baber of Jefferson City, Mo. Minerva Warner, of Weston, Mo. Emily Henderson of Fulton Mo and Panthea Boggs Ex Gov of Mo. My Father moved from Kentucky in 1818 Settled in Montgomery Co Mo. where I was Born on the 6th dayof June 1826. In 1839 we moved to Jefferson City, Mo My Mother died whilst I quite young. In 1846 My Father and uncle Lilburn W. Boggs, started for Oregon, on Bear River Lilburn W. Boggs took the California trail and our Folks the Oregon trail the Emigrants that took the California Road with the Exception of a few was snowed in with the Donner Party which you will Remember. Our Folks came in the southern Rout by the way of Klamath Lake Comeing to the canyon in southern (Oregon) they had to Leave their wagons and cache their goods and wade about twelve miles through the Water and over big Boulders. My Father had with his things  Cached at the Far End of Canyon Daniel Boones Compass and all of his surveying instruments the Emigrants went back the next spring the Indians had found the things Cached they got nothing Our Folks Packed One Ox with Clothing they got into the Willamette Valley at the Crossing of Marys River on Christmas day whent down to Lacreol where there was a few  settlers. My sister chloe taught school that winter I guess it was the first one taught outside of the Missions. They then took Claims down on the River below Butevulle, George K, Curry and Chloe Boone was married in March 1848 they Lived in Oregon City where he Edited a paper My Father went to the mines in the spring of 49 My Brother in law Thomas Norris and Jessie  Boone My eldest Brother stopped on the Claims. After my Father went to the Mines Mr. Curry moved up on My Fathers Claim My sister Mrs Norris is Living at Myrtle Point Coos Bay. You ask aboutn the Winter of 52-53. The winter of 52-53 was pretty hard on stock there was about one foot snow.  People had not Raised much feed then the Pack trains was running Erika and Jacksonville Some trains was Loaded with Flour they tried to feed the Mules Flour it Balled up in their Mouths it was no go they Bought all the straw out of the bed ticks to feed them. You asked about the Capital was Located the Capital was first Located at Corvallis and was then moved to Salem.

Now I will Explain why I did not come with the emigration in 46. I went to the rocky Mountains in the spring of 1845 in the Employ of a fur Company, was stationed at Fort Pueblo on the Head (of) the arcansas River a traders Post ther is now a Large city the Pueblo. Our Business was to trade for Bufaloe Robes and Beaver after trading in the Shenne (Chyenne village all Winter in a village of One thousand Lodges of Shienne and Sioux I went across the Mountain to Taos New Mexico was there but a couple of days when they got the news that was declared the Mexicans wanted what traders and trappers to take the oath of allegiance we Left and went back to the Fort on the arcansas River the trains was getting Ready to start  down to the States with the furs. The company wanted me to go down with the train. After getting down to the Missouri river at Kansas City had been there a couple of days a Company came from Jefferson City on ther way to Fort Leavenworth to be mustered in the service knowing most all of the Co they put at me to go with them I went to fort Leavenworth and was mustered in the service and started for Mexico.

After getting down from the Mountains I found that my folks and uncle Lilburn Boggs had started for Oregon after taking Santa Fee went down the Del Norte River then across the mountains in to the Navajo Indians on the head waters helia (Gila) that Puts into the Gulf of California. After making a treaty with the Navaho Indians we back to the Del Norte and down to Alpaso where we had our first scrap from there to Chihuahua where we had the Battle of Sacramento. From Chihuahua went to the Lower Country and Joined General Taylor and Wool at Monterey where they had just Fought the Battle of Beuna Vista As our (time) was out having Enlisted for one year Gen Taylor Ordered us to Matamoras and the gulf to Brasos Ileana where to shipping on an Old Merchantman across the gulf to New Orleans where we was discharged Paid off took steamers up the Mississippi to St. Louis then up the Missouri Col Doniphans First Reg Mo came all back traveling four thousand five hundred miles in 13 months after selling goods all winter in Albert G Boones store I started to Oregon on the first of April going to St Joseph 17 wagons came on their way to Oregon crossed the Missouri river Organized a Company they stuck it on to me to take charge of the Company and started on our Journey. We overtook a small Company that was just a head of us they were in camp having trouble there was young man and his wife he undertook to drive a team for a man they had Fallen out the man that owned the team had turned him and his wife out on the Plains and no way for them to get back or a head the other teams being all full they could not take them in I give him up my team as I had Plenty Provissions if ever there a man glad he was on North Platt we were moving Joseph Meek came up with a small escort he to dinner with me he was on his way to Washington with Dispatches he said the Indians had Broke out and killed the Missionarys at Whitmans Station said there was a small Company of Volunteers at Whitmans station we came on the Fort Hall. It was in Charge of Capt Grant of the Hudson Bay, he told us it would not be safe for Less than One Hundred Wagons to Come in together we went into Camp that night held a Counsel and there was five of us agreed to Come ahead to see if we could get through by traveling by night we started with one Pack Horse I had Fremonts Guide it told where the trail turned off on the Umatilla to go to whitmans station as we intended to go there on Reaching the Umatilla we intended to start that night we camped in the willows we saw a party comeing down the trail we saw they were whites we hailed them they were Just down from the station were on their way to the Emigrant Road to see that it was clear of Indians, they said there was a small Company of Volunteers stationed at the Dalles and as they had just made a treaty they thought we could get there safely After getting to Dalles we were Entirely out of Provissions we found a man there by the name of Nathan Olney was ready to start to the Valley with a bunch of horses. He had a Klickatat wife. He had about a doz Indians to drive horses we Lived from the Dalles to Oregon City on Cammas. It had been steamed and Dried that was in the Fall of 1848. There was one store Owned by the Hudson Bay all their good came from England and only Grist mill in the Country was there I will tell you what kind of tabacco they had it was put up on Coils just like rope and about the size of inch Rope it was sold by the Fathom or yard and as strong as acquafortis. Mr. Curry was publishing a paper there then. I will (tell) you a few names that were Living there then. Mr. McLoughlin, W.G.TVault, Mr. Hood, Sidney Moss, Gov A ernathey, William McKay, Mr. McKinley. In the spring of 49 W.G. T'Vault and myself started to California mines, went into Umpqua and waited for company. in a couple of days a Company came from Clackamas County amoungst them Mr. Officer Mr Dickey and others, had to fight our way all through the Rouge Rive Country got one of our men shot, Mr. Calha. Whilst Living on the border and in the Mountains I got to know all of the Old traders and Trapper, the Bents, Carson Fremont Fitspatric Bill williams Beckwith. I see Beckwith's name mentioned in the Papers as guide He was a negro. I forgot to state that I first heard of the Discovery of the mines I saw a Trader on Bear River in a Shake Indian village he said a Party had just Passed there and told him they and discovered gold in Cal. The first news they got in Oregon of the mines a vessel came into the Columbia that Brought the news. The mines was discovered I think in Feb. 1848. Now I will stop for I have about wore you. Hoping you can find something that will be of Interest if you should come the Maquina any time we would be Pleased to have you come and see us

Yours truly

George L. Boone

Dedicated to  the Memory of Olive Van Bibber Tafel