Transcribed from "An Illustrated History of The Big Bend Country, embracing
Lincoln, Douglas, Adams and Franklin counties, State of Washington",
published by Western Historical Publishing Co., 1904.
JERRY H. GARDNER is one of the
pioneers of Lincoln county, is well known throughout the country, has hosts
of friends and a first class standing. He resides in Davenport and
owns considerable property.
Jerry H. Gardner was born in Genesee county,
New York, on August 6, 1841, being the son of Jerry H. and Dinah (Bush)
Gardner, natives also of Genesee county, New York. In 1845, the former
journeyed to Boone county, Illinois, and in 1850, they came to Iowa.
In April, 1863, they left that state for the uncertain journey across the
plains. They were with a large train of over forty wagons and horses
were used to draw their conveyances. For three months they traveled
before reaching San Jose, California. They had numerous battles with
the Indians but owing to the fact that their train was a large one, they
came through all right. The parents settled on a farm and there remained
until their death, which was in 1893, the mother aged seventy-nine and
the father, eighty. They were the parents of two children, Thomas
M., who died in 1890, and Jerry H., the subject of this review. The
father was of Irish extraction and the mother of Dutch. Our subject
was educated in Allamakee county, Iowa and early learned the blacksmith
trade. He was just past twenty-one when they crossed the plains and
as soon as they arrived in California, started for himself. He followed
his trade until 1880, when he came to Walla Walla. There he was employed
as blacksmith, by the government, to go to Colville. In November,
1882, he was transferred to Fort Spokane and remained there until he was
elected sheriff, in 1898. He was nominated by the Republicans against
O. Deveniss, Populist, and J. Morlan, Democrat and won the day by a hondsome
majority. After serving the term, his party again called him to run
on the Republican ticket and L. A. Ranade, Democrat, was his opponent.
Again, Mr. Gardner was succesful. During this time occurred the capture
of the noted outlaw, Tracy, which is fully detailed in another portion
of this work.
In June, 1862, Mr. Gardner married Miss Elizabeth
Jackson, whose father, William Jackson, was a first cousin of the noted
General Jackson and they have in their possession a continued history of
the family for two hundred years back. Mrs. Gardner was one of a
family of six children. Mr. Gardner is a very active and well informed
Republican, a real wheelhorse in the campaigns. In addition to holding
the office of sheriff as mentioned above, he has been justice of the peace
and deputy sheriff as well as an incumbent of various other offices.
Mr. Gardner has been an odd fellow for thirty-four years and is also a
member of the A. F. & A. M. Mrs. Gardener has passed all the
chairs in the Rebekah order and has also been to the grand lodge.
They are highly respected people and are the center of a large circle of