Minor Spivy is one of the esteemed pioneers of the northwest, having assisted to open up a number of different sections since his first advent to the coast country in 1805. He was born in Giles County, Tennessee, on August 26, 1836, being the son of William and Lucy Spivy. The father was a native of Tennessee and died aged thirty-eight. His father was born in Ireland and his mother in Germany. The mother of our subject was born in Tennessee and her parents were natives of North Carolina. She died six days after her husband’s death. Both deaths resulted from exposure while traveling to Missouri.

Our subject was raised by his uncle, John Wilks, in Randolph County, Missouri, and his education was gained from the district schools. At the age of fifteen he worked out and when twenty-eight he, with his wife and child, crossed the plains with ox teams. He settled in Lane County, later removing to Douglas County, where he did well raising hogs. In 1879, he settled near Palouse, on lieu land and there farmed until November, 1897, the month of his arrival and also the time of his departure. He filed on his present place, just southeast from Myrtle, and since that time has devoted himself to its cultivation and improvement. Mr. Spivy has one brother. William, residing in Fresno, California, who owned land in the city limits which he sold at two hundred and fifty dollars per acre and thus became wealthy. Mr. Spivy has one sister, Lucy, widow of Milton Bozarth.

On February 22, 1864, Mr. Spivy married Miss Ellen, daughter of Washington and Mary (Jones) Parker, natives of Missouri, but pioneers to Lane County, Oregon. Mrs. Spivy died, aged twenty, when they were crossing the plains and were twelve miles out from Boise. On October 24, 1865, Mr. Spivy married Miss Jemima McDonald, at Garfield, Washington. She was born in Kentucky in 1856, her parents being natives of Germany. By the first wife, one child was born, Elra, mention of whom is made in this work. The fruit of the second marriage is one son, William A., a specially bright and promising youth. Mr. Spivy served in the Confederate army under Price, participating in the battles of Lexington, Pea Ridge and others. He was finally discharged for the purpose of taking care of a very sick brother.

Mr. Spivy is a Democrat and a highly respected citizen.

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