The Hood River Glacier, Hood River, OR., April 27, 1916, page 1

Civil War Services Is Recorded
Natives of Indiana, Mr. Wilson and His Family Came to Oregon by Way of California in 1876

     Among the early pioneers of the Hood River valley, by Mr. and Mrs. John A. Wilson, whose home is on Seventh street. Mr. and Mrs. Wilson arrived in Oregon from Illinois in 1876, coming by way of the Union Pacific line to San Francisco, and thence by boat to Portland. The journey from Omaha to Sacramento consumed eight days.
     Mr. Wilson took up a homestead in the district, known at the time as the Belmont district, but which is now considered part of the Barrett district. At the time of his arrival there was but one school in the community. It was conducted in a little frame structure that now forms the kitchen at the Cottage Farm resort of Mrs. Alma Howe. The school was taught by Mrs. Mary Henderson, mother of Prof. L.F. and John Leland Henderson.
     The next year after the arrival of Mr. Wilson, Barrett school district was formed, Mr. Wilson, Newton Clark and V. Hodge being the first directors. Dr. P.G. Barrett was clerk of the district. Mr. Wilson served on the board for nine consecutive successive years.
     Mr. Wilson's a place a number of years ago was purchased by H.R. Albee, now mayor of Portland. Mr. Albee subdivided the tract and resold it. A portion of the homestead is at present owned by as S.G. Oxborrow.
     "Newton Clark," says Mr. Wilson, "when he was on his way to the shingle camp near Parkertown, stopped at my place and inquired the way."
     Mr. Wilson is a native of Indiana, while his wife was born in Ohio. Their wedding occurred in Livingstone county, Ill., in February, 1869. Mrs. Wilson's maiden name was Nancy A. Chamberlin.
     On May 21 Mr. Wilson will have reached his 75th birthday, having been born in 1841 in a Fayette county, near Connersville, Ind.
     In 1852 Mr. Wilson moved with his parents to Wabash county, where he resided on a farm until the outbreak of the Civil war, when he enlisted on April 23, 1861, with the Eighth Indiana Volunteers for a 90 days service. When this enlistment was up he became a member of the 46th Indiana Volunteers for a three year service, or so long as the war should last.
     During the first 90 days Mr. Wilson saw active service in West Virginia, and on July 11, 1861, participated in the battle of the Rich Mountain.
     With the 46th Volunteers he marched through Kentucky and thence to New Madrid, Mo., which was taken by Federal forces during March, 1862. From New Madrid he went to Fort Pillow, 80 miles above Memphis. After the evacuation of Corinth his regiment went to Memphis on a gunboat fleet. Mr. Wilson was at Memphis the day the city was taken in June, 1862. The regiment was then sent on an expedition up White River, Arkansas, with supplies for Curtis' army, which was at Batesville. Low water, however, prevented the relief expedition from resulting successfully. The regiment then returned to Helena, Ark.
     Mr. Wilson and his fellow comrades in the spring of 1863 were sent to Vicksburg. A battle engaged them on May 1 at Port Gibson, and on May 16 the battle of Champion Hill was fought. On July 5 Mr. Wilson participated in the siege Vicksburg and was sent thence to engage the army of General Johnson at Jackson. He was sent thence to New Orleans, and in 1864 went on the Red river expedition. On April 8, 1864, Mr. Wilson was captured by the Confederate forces at Sabine Crossroads. He was in prison for eight months, four months at Tyler, Tex., and four at Hempstead. After his release he did garrison duty until he was mustered out on September 4, 1865.
     Mr. and Mrs. Wilson have the following seven children: Austin Wilson, of Klickitat county, Wash.; George and Lewis Wilson, of National, Nev.; Mrs. George Hinish, of Portland, and Misses Grace, Laura and Flora Wilson, of this city.
     Mr. Wilson is a past commander of Canby Post, G.A.R. He has a story of the wilds of pioneer times that equals of the bear story told recently by Newton Clark. One day a doe and two fawns, curiosity overcoming the usual discretion of the deer family, boldly walked up to his kitchen window and peered in to see what to the habitation of man might look like.

©  Jeffrey L. Elmer