Perhaps there is no man in the entire County of Nez Perces who is better and more favorably known than the genial, talented and faithful business man and true gentleman whose name appears at the head of this article. A review of his life is a real part of the history of this County and therefore we append an epitome with pleasure.
Ernest L. was born in Sigourney, Iowa, on November 29, 1864, being the son of John T. and Albina S. (McColley) Parker. The father was a millman and contractor and is now mayor of Sigourney. He was born in Ohio on February 2. 1832 was a captain of Company D, Thirteenth Iowa, and spent eight months in Libby prison. He was also sheriff of Keokuk County, Iowa, and County commissioner for a number of terms. His father was Samuel Parker, who married a Miss Barton of New England. This gentleman was born in Virginia in 1808 and died in moo. The mother of our subject was born in Indiana on January 5, 1836. Her father, Charles McColley, was horn in Virginia, was sheriff of Keokuk County, Iowa, and married Miss Buck, a native of Pennsylvania.
Our subject was educated in the common schools, labored in the mill and remained at home until twenty-one, then went to Omaha and worked in a sash and door factory. Later he worked in Sioux City, Iowa, and then went to Spokane, Washington. His brother, James S., was operating a sash and door factory there and he labored with him for two years. Then he went to Moscow and worked for the M. J. Shields Company for eighteen months. He and his brother James then bought a mill and moved it to Denver, Idaho County, where they operated it for three years, and then our subject went to Nez Perce, when the reservation was opened up, started a lumber yard and later put in a stock of furniture, and here we find him at the present time.
In 1896 the people called him to act as County commissioner, electing him on the Democratic ticket. At the expiration of that term he was nominated for sheriff, but went with his entire ticket to defeat. In 1900 he was again nominated for commissioner and elected, and is serving in that capacity now. He has been trustee of his home village for a number of terms. Mr. Parker is a man of high standing, is popular with the people, of good appearance, and a gentleman in every sense of the word. In 1900 he was called by the people to act as delegate to Boise to oppose the slicing of this County to add taxable property to Shoshone. Mr. Parker has the following brothers and sisters: James S., Charles M., Elvin M., Louisa A. Foley, Eva A., T. Barton, Fred F. and Ray.
Mr. Parker is a member of the K. of P., of the W. of W., of the I. O. O. F., and is also a Son of the Veterans. Mr. Parker owns real estate in Nez Perce and in Lewiston, besides other property. He is a firm believer in the advantages and resources of Nez Perces County, and is always laboring for its up building and advancement.
Source: An Illustrated History of Northern Idaho, Embracing Nez Perce, Idaho, Latah, Kootenai and Shoshone Counties, Western Historical Publishing Company, 1903