Biography of Presley P. Cleveland

Men, like the subject of this article, are the ones who have made the west so thrifty and wealthy. Mr. Cleveland is one of the leading agriculturists of Nez Perces County. We make that statement guardedly and the reasons are that he has in the first place a well selected farm, which he took from the wilds when the reservation was opened. It is laid out with wisdom and the buildings are erected with an outlook both for convenience and beauty. He has a well selected orchard that is a model in every respect. His land is handled in a skillful manner, being rotated to a variety of crops as hay, oats, wheat, barley, flax and the vegetables. Mr. Cleveland has a number of excellent graded cattle and some thoroughbred hogs. His barns are commodious and his residence is comfortable and tasty. The entire appearance of the farm is one of thrift, industry and skill and because of the points mentioned it is evident that it is one of the model farms in the west not given to extremes in any line, but manifesting a beautiful symmetry and proportion in all points.

Reverting more to his personal history, we note that Presley P. Cleveland was born in Monroe County, Tennessee, on August 19, 1851, being the son of Larkin J. and Minerva (Parker) Cleveland. The father was born in Tennessee and his father was one of the pioneers of that country from North Carolina. The mother of our subject was a native of Tennessee and her father came from Virginia to her native state.

Presley grew up on a farm and gained his education from the public schools and from Croton Academy. He remained at home until of age and then farmed for a widowed cousin for four years. After this, he operated a farm for a great uncle for four years, during which time he was married and in the fall of 1879 he came to northwestern Missouri. The next spring he went to the southern part of that state and nine years later he came to the vicinity of Garfield, Washington, where he rented land and also near Steptoe Butte for a year and then came to the Potlatch country, settling near Juliaetta in the fall of 1891. In the spring of 1892 he purchased a ranch near Kendrick and to the tilling of that he gave his attention until the reservation opened up and then he located on the place described above. In addition to the items mentioned we should relate that the two hundred shade trees that Mr. Cleveland has arranged in an artistic manner about his grounds add great comfort, beauty and value to the property. In addition to his own land he leases eighty acres from Mr. Clifford. Mr. Cleveland has three brothers, Alfred A., Harvey H. and Robert M. Also he has two sisters, Cordie, wife of Orin Evans, near Gifford; Eliza, wife of David Black, south of Gifford. Mrs. Cleveland’s maiden name was Nannie J. Rausin. She was born in Monroe County, Tennessee. He had three uncles in the Confederate army and one in the Union army. The last one was a lieutenant, who was wounded at the battle of Nashville.

To Mr. and Mrs. Cleveland there have been born ten children, Charles F., Robert B., Ben J., Ira, Satie L., Minerva E., Larkin P., Hattie M., Grace E., and Lona H.

Mr. Cleveland is one of the leading men of the community and is always alert for the furthering of those measures that tend to advance the welfare of all. He was formerly a Republican in politics but is now a Populist.

Mrs. Cleveland, whose parents were natives of North Carolina and Tennessee, respectively, but now deceased, had three uncles in the Union army; one on the mother’s side, and two on the father’s side.

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

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