Biography of William J. Riley

William J. Riley, deceased. It is fitting that we should incorporate in this volume a memorial of the esteemed patriot and substantial citizen, whose labors in the northwest have resulted in much development and building up. He was born in Carroll County, Missouri, on February 6, 1846, being the son of Ulysses J. and Mary (James) Riley. The father was born in Washington County, Virginia, in 1815, being a nephew of the Meek family. He was a pioneer in Missouri. Out subject was brought up in Missouri, was educated in the common schools and also in his youth perfected himself in the carpenter trade. During the time of dark fratricidal strife he was one of the brave ones who fought for the Union and the homes of the people, under Captain Hoover and. took part in the border warfare. In 1875 he went to California, and two years later came to Oregon, settling in Hillsboro. There he wrought at his trade until 1805, when he brought his family to the reservation where they all received their allotments. Since that time all have been employed in the work of improvement and on June 16, 1902, the father and beloved husband was called to the world beyond. On September 24, 1878, Mr. Riley married Miss Olive L. Meek, daughter of the Hon. J. L. and Virginia Meek. The fruit of this union is as follows, Stanley M., born October 3, 1879: Kate Francis, born August 9, 1885, and died February 7, 1895: Virginia Belle, born March 7, 1887. All were born in Glencoe, Oregon. Mr. Riley was a member of the G. A. R., and also of the I. O. O. F. He was allied with the Republican Party and took an intelligent part in the issues of the day, being justice of the peace in Washington County, Oregon, in 1881. The family has allotments amounting to three hundred and twenty acres and handle cattle and hogs, while they carry on a general farming business.

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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