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.
JAMES POWELL is one of the earliest
settlers in Lincoln county and is now one of its substantial citizens.
He resides about one mile east from Sherman on land which he secured by
government right nearly twenty-two years ago. During those lone years,
Mr. Powell has labored steadily and faithfully in the one line of industry
and has succeeded well.
James Powell was born in England, on July
30, 1857. His parents, John and Eliza (Hobbs) Powell, were both natives
of England. The father was a skilled gardner and followed that vocation
all his life. The public schools of his native land gave our subject
his educational training and at the early age of seventeen, he bade farewell
to England and friends and came to the United States. Later, he went
to Canada and for a number of years thereafter, he was engaged in railroading
in various portions of that country and the United States. In 1880,
Mr. Powell came to California and in May, 1881, he embarked at San Francisco,
on the steamship, Republic, for Portland. At the mouth of the Columbia,
while a terrific storm was raging, the ship parted, and he lost all his
effects. One boat with thirteen in was lost. Much heroism was
displayed by the officers of the ill-fated ship, but nothing was more striking
than the bravery of the stewardess. She calmly assisted the officers,
and refused to leave the wreck until the last minute. Mr. Powell
went to Lewis county, Washington, and in 1882 came to the Big Bend country
with a surveying party in charge of Major Truax and Mr. Snow, chief engineer
of government survey. He was so taken with the fertility and beauty
of this country that he immediately secured land where he now lives.
Shortly thereafter he went to Walla Walla and engaged on a farm for some
months then returned to his preemption where he has resided since.