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.

     RICHARD HILTON, although one of the younger men of Garfield county, has made a record, of which men of three score and ten might well be proud.  He is today one of the wealthy property owners in this part of the country and is doing a large business in general merchandise at Pataha City.  An account of his life can but be interesting to all and it is with pleasure that we append the same.
     Richard J. Hilton was born in California, on May 15, 1874.  His father, F. W. Hilton, was a native of Michigan and came to California as one of the "fortyniners." He followed freighting for many years and had some very thrilling experiences and wild adventures with the Indians and in other ways during those early days.  He married Maggie Hartman who was a native of San Jose, California, her parents also being among the early settlers in the Golden State.  When a lad, our subject was brought by his parents to Pendleton, Oregon, and a short time thereafter, they moved to the Cold Spring country, about twenty miles out from Pendleton.  There the father of our subject built the first school house in that part of the country.  The educational chances for Richard were very limited indeed but he possessed a spirit that pressed him forward to the improvement of what he had and that has constantly given him interest in research and study since, so that he has come to be one of the well informed men of the country.  When fourteen years of age, the family moved to Columbia county and two years later, our subject started out on the voyage of life for himself.  His first venture was working on the farms of the neighbors for wages and for five years continued doing that with a persevering tenacity which few possess.  In 1896 Mr. Hilton went to Lincoln county in Washington and selected a homestead near Creston.  When he went to Spokane to file on the land, he found he lacked two dollars and fifty cents of having enough to pay the fees.  The kindly receiver at the land office, however, trusted him for the balance which in due time was paid promptly.  From Spokane, Mr. Hilton went afoot without a penny, clear to Waitsburg Washington, where he secured a job and seen earned enough to enable him to improve his homestead in good shape and in 1902, he sold that property and removed to Pomeroy.  Here he bought five hundred and twenty acres, built two beautiful residences, made other improvements and sold the place soon after.  In January, 1903, he was appointed postmaster to Pataha City and has given excellent satisfaction in that office since.  At that time, he started a general merchandise store there and has made a success in that venture.  Among the property that Mr. Hilton owns, may mentioned eighteen hundred acres of land five miles west from Starbuck, town property at Leland, Idaho and at Starbuck, Washington, and also much in Pataha City.  He has shown himself a thorough and capable business man, stirring, energetic and always abreast of the times.  Being a man of excellent information, he is able to take advantage of every opportunity that offers and has thereby gained his present princely holding.
     In 1894 Mr. Hilton married Miss Dora Montgomery, who was born and raised in  Waitsburg.  Her father, William Montgomery, was one of the early pioneers of Walla Walla county, and was a prominent citizen there.  To this union four children have been born, Louis D., Lola, Laura and Clarence L.
     Mr. Hilton started in 1896 with scarcely a dollar.  Inside of eight years he has accumulated a property worth many thousands of dollars and has met and overcome in the meantime much adversity and opposition that would have swamped a man of ordinary ability.  After thus overcoming in all these trying places, he is today a better and stronger man and is ready to meet even greater difficulties than has been mentioned, and judging the future by the past, he will make a brilliant record for himself.