John D. Stevens is a leading merchant of the reservation region of Nez Perces County, and at present is doing business at the Star Mills, two miles south from Lookout post office. He is a representative business man and public minded citizen and an enterprising factor in the progress of the County.
John D. Stevens was born in Washington County, Tennessee, on January 30, 1862, being the son of George W. and Lydia E. (Dillingham) Stevens, natives of Washington County, Tennessee, and North Carolina, respectively. In 1865 they removed to McDonough County, Illinois, and our subject grew up on the farm and gained his education from the common schools. In 1871 the family came to Kansas and the father took a claim.
It was 1890 that our subject left the parental roof and started for himself. His first journey was to Polk County, Oregon, where he was engaged in a flouring mill. He learned the trade of the engineer and the arts of the miller, becoming a practical operator in both these important lines. He later bought an interest in a general merchandise establishment. He wrought there until 1899, and then made a move to Willola post office on the reservation, where he was postmaster for a time and in October, 1901, he came to his present location and here he is doing a good business. He is a business man in every sense of the word and his affability and genial ways, added to his talent, are making for’ him a fine trade.
At Independence, Oregon, in 1892, Mr. Stevens married Miss Nettie, daughter of James and Philadelphia (Fry) Ferguson, natives respectively of Canada and England. Mrs. Ferguson saw Queen Victoria crowned before leaving the old country. Mr. Stevens has three brothers: James F., living in Oregon; DeWitt S., George G., also one sister, Semarimas, wife of William F. Gill, in Kansas. To Mr. and Mrs. Stevens there have been born three children, Raymond A., John D. and Robert N. In political matters Mr. Stevens is allied with the Republicans and while he does not press for personal preferment in that realm, he always takes the interest in governmental affairs that becomes the good citizen.
Source: An Illustrated History of Northern Idaho, Embracing Nez Perce, Idaho, Latah, Kootenai and Shoshone Counties, Western Historical Publishing Company, 1903