Many are the worthy pioneers whose faithful and well directed labors have given to us this famous western country for enjoyment and wealth, but not least among them were the parents of our subject, who crossed the plains with ox teams in 1852 and ended the weary and dangerous journey when they settled in western Oregon. The father went the next year to Yreka, California, and gained good mining interests and then went to Boise, Idaho, and there operated in the mines. Between these two points and his home in Oregon he spent much of the early years and also did much development work on the home place in Oregon, in addition to the arduous labors of mining.

James H. Evans was born in Linn County, Oregon, on January 28, 1862, his parents being Berry and Ann E. (Cunningham) Evans. When James was ten years of age the family came to Washington and settled near where Dayton is now, it being then but one little red store and a blacksmith shop. There he obtained his education from the public schools and in 1883 he decided to start in the walks of life on his own responsibility and accordingly went to Garfield and rented a farm. One year later he went to Alpowa and took a preemption, which he tilled for three years. Thence he removed to his present residence, three miles south from Juliaetta, took a homestead and began the commendable labors of improvement and development. Mr. Evans cut the first road through this section to the famous Camas prairie region, the same being the first one there since the early one from Caldwell. He built and maintained a ferry at the Clearwater crossing known then as Big Eddy, but now named by the Northern Pacific, Agatha, from the given name of Mrs. Evans.

On March 18, 1884, Mr. Evans married Miss Agatha, daughter of Thomas Reynolds, mention of whom is made elsewhere in this volume. To this happy union there have been born six children: Thomas W., at home; Joseph, May, Esther, Vera and Mary. Mr. Evans has three brothers and four sisters, William M., a merchant and farmer at Willola, who also runs the ferry; Berry, at Lake Chelan, Washington, in the stock business; Granville, residing at Riverside, Okanogan County. Washington; Mary C, wife of Bud King, residing near Dayton; Angonetta, wife of D. Flemming, residing near Lake Chelan: Anna, single. Mr. Evans is a Republican. He and his estimable wife are highly respected people and are deserving of much credit for the worthy labors they have done for the opening of this country and they are possessed of rare virtues of integrity, enterprise and wisdom, while geniality and good will abound on every hand in their happy home.

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