To the well known and industrious merchant whose name is above, we grant space in this history as he is one of the leading men of Leland has made a commendable record and is a substantial and good citizen and an upright and capable man.

Frank W. Hilton was born in Muskegon, Michigan, on August 25, 1851, being the son of Richard and Rachel (Bailey) Hilton. In 1864 the family came to Inyo County, California, and there the father bought several hundred acres of land. The parents still live there.

As soon as our subject had finished his education, he assisted his father in freighting from Los Angeles to Independence, the County seat of Inyo County. Also during this time he learned the wagon and blacksmith trade. When he was eighteen he went to Arizona and freighted. Two years later we find him in St. Clair County, operating a supply store on the Pescadero and Saratoga road, and then he erected a hotel on the summit of the range and conducted it for two years. Returning to Inyo County he started a little town in Round valley, which is now a thriving trading point. He then went to Pendleton, took land and after five years sold it. His next move was to Genesee, where he purchased a blacksmith shop. This was sold in [893 and then Mr. Hilton came to Leland. taking up the same business with the added part of merchandising. In 1897 the store burned down and in 1901 the shop was destroyed by fire. The former was reestablished and the latter has not been. Mr. Hilton is doing a good business and is popular with the trading people.

In 1871 Mr. Hilton married Miss Margaret, daughter of John and Eliza (Henson) Hartman, natives of Missouri, and of German and Swedish descent. Mr. Hartman is a prominent merchant in Saratoga. Mr. and Mrs. Hilton have eight children, Richard, a wealthy farmer and real estate owner at Pomeroy, Washington; Frank, with his parents; Allen, at home; Edna, wife of Lee Penell, a merchant at Lewiston; Erma, wife of William Hillman, near Dayton, Washington; Lettie, Pearl and Kate, at home. Mr. Hilton is a Republican, has attended conventions but never allows his name placed in nomination for office though often urged to do so. Mr. Hilton has three brothers, one sister, Joseph H., a leading farmer near Preston, Washington; Oscar, a large farmer in Inyo County, California; Charles, a farmer in the same County; Amelia, conducting the mercantile business of her husband, who recently died. Mr. Hilton’s family is an old and prominent one in New York. Judge Hilton, one of the wealthy men of that state being one of the family. This latter succeeded to A. T. Stewart’s business upon his death.

Our subject is an amiable and upright man has a fine standing among his fellows and has always manifested industry, assiduity and wisdom in his labors.

Back to: Nez Perce Biographies

Source: An Illustrated History of Northern Idaho, Embracing Nez Perce, Idaho, Latah, Kootenai and Shoshone Counties, Western Historical Publishing Company, 1903