The little village of Ilo owes its birth to the efforts of the subject of this sketch. Through his efforts the post office was established and he named the place Ilo from his little daughter’s name. He is a public minded man, takes liberal views of the questions of life, is always laboring for advancement and stands well among the people. Mr. Leggett operates a general merchandise establishment and has a good trade.
An outline of his career will be of interest to the readers of this volume and therefore we append the same. Oaky W. was born in Adair County, Iowa, on May 30, 1873, being the son of John L. and Emma (Johnson) Leggett. His father was born in Illinois in 1839. He was a merchant and farmer, was postmaster at Lathrop, Iowa, for twenty-five years, was railroad agent also, and County commissioner for six years. He fought the battles of the country in the Ninth Illinois Cavalry for three years in the Rebellion. He was a pioneer of Adair County and lives there still. His parents were natives of Illinois. The mother of our subject was born in Ohio, in 1849, her parents being natives of the same state.
Our subject grew to manhood in Iowa and there received his education. At the age of fifteen he took charge of a station at Rock Island, having learned telegraphy and the business from his father. Three years were spent there, next he operated as express agent from Des Moines for a time and then engaged with the Great Western for a time. After this, he returned to the farm and labored for four years. Next he opened a general merchandise establishment in Dana, Iowa, and did a good business until the store burned down. It was 1898 that he came to the coast and later to Lewiston. He engaged with the Small & Emory Lumber Company for a time and then came to Ilo, where he opened a general merchandise establishment, and as stated above, he succeeded in getting the post office established, of which he is postmaster, in addition attending to his mercantile business.
On Much 7, 1894, Mr. Leggett married Miss Lillie M., daughter of Oscar and Elizabeth (Armstrong) Allen, natives of Ohio. The father was a blacksmith: both parents died when Mrs. Leggett was young. Mrs. Leggett was born in Iowa in 1874, graduated from the high school and taught for three years. She has two brothers and one sister, Charles H. Oscar F. and Hattie, all in Iowa. Mr. Leggett has the following named brothers and sisters: Anna, Bert L., Stella M., all in Iowa. Mr. and Mrs. Leggett have two children, Ilo and Dorothy.
Mr. Leggett is a member of the I. O. O. F. and the M. W. A. He is a Republican in politics and labors for good government. He owns a farm near town and other property. Mr. Leggett takes great interest in good schools and in churches and at the present time he is assisting liberally to build the Presbyterian Church at Ilo, although he is not a member of that denomination.
Mr. Leggett’s father, grandfather, and two uncles, Thomas J. Armstrong and John Spellman, all fought for the Union in the Rebellion. The two uncles were killed.
Source: An Illustrated History of Northern Idaho, Embracing Nez Perce, Idaho, Latah, Kootenai and Shoshone Counties, Western Historical Publishing Company, 1903