Biography of Charles Hoffman

This veteran on the battlefield of life has passed three-quarters of a century in the struggle allotted to man and in it all he has manifested great tenacity of purpose, good ability, and has achieved a fine success both from a financial standpoint and in the excellent standing in the community where he is highly respected and holds the good will of all.

His parents, Jacob and Sarah (Troxall) Hoffman, were natives of Pennsylvania, where our subject, was also born: they are of German extraction and for many years back all have resided in that state. Charles was raised in Northumberland County and while his educational advantages were limited, he acquired a good training and fund of information by his persistent efforts in study.

When twenty-four he went to blacksmithing in New York as foreman of a shop and wrought there until the close of the Mexican war. Then he went to Illinois and wrought at his trade and farmed until after the Civil war. Then a brief time was spent in Kansas and in 1879 he crossed the plains did settled on a preemption, which is now a part of his fine estate of over six hundred acres, five hundred of which are in a high state of cultivation. He has excellent buildings, handles considerable stock and does a large farming and stock business.

Mr. Hoffman raises some fine draft horses. He has a well of fine water that was blasted out of the solid rock. Mr. Hoffman had six brothers and three sisters, but does not know the whereabouts of any of them. He was married when about twenty-seven to Sarah J. Dowd and three children were born to them, Sarah C, wife of Burton Lane, of Council, Idaho; Lucy, wife of A. Ebell, near Baker City, Oregon; Ross, a farmer at the mouth of Pine creek. Mr. Hoffman was called to mourn the death of his wife and on June 4, 1876, he married Miss Lucy Shay, at Chetopa, Kansas, who was the first white woman on the prairie. Her parents, Isaac A. and Margaret (Burkhardt) Shay, were natives of Illinois and Kentucky and of Irish and Dutch descent, respectively. They are both dead. Mrs. Hoffman was born in Leavenworth, Kansas, on July 31, 1859. She has three brothers, Benjamin, William, and Charles. Nine children have been born to this worthy couple, Jesse, the first white child born in the Big Potlatch, now a student in Milton College; Charles, Walter, Olive, Alice, Benjamin, Elsie, Esther, Mary, all at home. Mrs. Hoffman was occupied in teaching school before her marriage. She is a member of the Methodist Church.

Mr. and Mrs. Hoffman are ardent supporters of educational facilities and believe firmly in thorough training for their children. They are counted among the leading people of this section and are always in the van for anything that will build up and enhance the interests of the community and be for the good of all.

Source: An Illustrated History of North Idaho: Embracing Nez Perce, Idaho, Latah, Kootenai and Shoshone counties, state of Idaho; Western Historical Publishing Company, 1903

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