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Multnomah County

The first claim listed for the island was settled on April 3, 1845 by Jacob Cline. Originally he had a claim in what is now downtown Portland. When his wife Mary realized they would be living next door to William Johnson and his Indian wife, She wasn’t happy. Mary insisted they find a place more in keeping with her idea of what was proper. Jacob found a place on Sauvie Island where they settled. Eventually the marriage ended and Mary moved to Portland.


Living on the island when Jacob and Mary arrived was Isabella Logie and her husband James. They all became fast friends. Isabella was their midwife when their next daughter was born. James and Mary named this daughter Isabella Logie in honor of their new friend.



James Logie passed away and Isabella had to finalize the donation land claim by herself. The papers say that she settled her claim on May 15, 1845. Later Isabella married  Jonathan Moar, a fellow Scot and close family friend. They remained on the claim and raised a large family. Their claim is the site of Fort William. This was also the site of a large Indian village called Cath-lo-nah-qui-ah.

The next settler to arrive was Alexander McQuinn with his family on May 16,1847. He was a blacksmith and gun maker from Missouri. He came west on a wagon train with his father-in-law Abner Enyart and his family, two brother-in-laws, Anderson Smith and John Louisignont. A family cemetery on Alexander’s land was used by many of the early settlers.


James Bybee and his wife, Julia Ann Miller settled on September 9,1847. We know that James was on the island earlier with his father-in-law, Robert Miller. The Bybee claim is the site of the Bybee-Howell house. James raised and raced horses. This kept him away from home much of the time. Eventually his wife left the island and moved to Cheney, Washington where many of his children had settled.

Joseph Charlton settled on December 9, 1848. He was married to Margaret Catherine, another daughter of Robert Miller. The Charlton claim is to the north of the Bybee claim. If you drive out to the Charlton Kennels you will see a sign that says “road under construction since 1848.”


Stories are told of a lady and her children deserted by their wagon train after her husband died. She was rescued and brought to the island by Simon Reeder. Her name was Samantha Keith. She was the sister of Joseph and James Charlton. Her second husband was John Wilmott.

The Wilmott claim was the site of an important dig for the Oregon Archeological Society. It is known as the Merrybelle site.  Many important Native American artifacts have been found there.

East of the Wilmott claim, towards the Columbia river is the claim of Edward Morgan. The Morgan family has been written about extensively by the family. One of Edward’s sons, William Henry Harrison Morgan, married Sarah Orchard. Her sister, America Orchard, married James Thomas. a member of another early Sauvie Island family. Another of Edward’s sons, Benjamin, married Jane Cunningham, daughter of John and Jane (Work) Cunningham. The Cunninghams were Washington County settlers from the Red River in Canada.

Benjamin Morgan’s claim was near to the border of Columbia and Multnomah counties along the Multnomah Slough. This was the site of another important Indian village called Cath-la-min-na-min. It was described by Gabriel Franchere and Sir George Simpson who said there was a large black basalt carving which the natives thought would bring rain if touched. It was still there in 1880 when a reporter from the Oregonian described it. More information can be found in Stone Age of the Columbia by Emery Strong and in Screenings a publication of the Oregon Archeological Society.

Ellis Walker settled his claim on March 1,1850. His wife was Sarah Bozarth, daughter of Squire Bozarth. Ellis was the brother of Jesse Walker who was married to Nancy, another daughter of Robert Miller.

Martin Gillihan settled his claim on September 30,1850. He married Sarah Elizabeth, daughter of Benjamin Howell of the island. Sarah was Martin’s second wife.

James Menzies, a ship’s captain from Scotland, was the next to settle a claim. His land was part of the original provisional land claim of Robert Miller. It was the site of another important Indian village. James married Parthenia, a daughter of Robert Miller. Eventually James and his family moved to Portland. He rented out his farm to Thomas Reddick and his family.


Shaddrack Reddick was the father of Thomas and an early settler. He passed away and his widow married Henry Barber of the historic Barber building on Grand Avenue in Portland.. Shaddrack’s daughter Christine, became the wife of one of the son’s of Peter Guild of Guild’s Lake.


Mathew White settled his claim on December 26, 1850.He passed away after a short time and his widow Juretta was left to manage the farm. Eventually she married a man who had worked for them, Richard Thompson. Hulda, daughter of Mathew and Juretta, married William Bybee, a cousin of James Bybee.

Horace McIntire is listed as the next settler on August 27, 1851. His wife Narcissa was a daughter of Robert Miller. No more land was available near the rest of the family so he settled on a claim above Leonard Jewett along the Columbia river. One of the McIntire’s daughters married William Edward Henrici, son of a prominent family from the Columbia County end of the island.

William Cooper settled his claim on October 15, 1853. His wife was Ellen Munroe, daughter of David Munroe, one of the Red River families that settled in Washington County. William passed away and his widow married John Flett, another Red River settler from Washington county. They moved to Tacoma, Washington and started a large dairy which is still well known. There is an area in Tacoma called “Fletts” after the family.

Simon Reeder settled his claim on August 22,1853. His wife was Catherine Abel. She was the sister of Jackson Abel, another early settler. Simon’s land was on the site of the largest Indian village on the island. It was called Multnomah.  Some say it was the locale for the book “Bridge of the Gods” by Balch.


On October 7, 1854 James Taylor another Hudson Bay employee settled a claim for land. He was married to Arabella McKenzie, widow of John Spence. John Spence was a Red River settler who had gone to California and died in the Gold fields. The Taylor claim was on the Multnomah Slough side of the island between the Logies and the McQuinns.


Benjamin Howell, a doctor from the east, was the next to settle. His claim was settled on November 13, 1854. His land was next to Bybee’s but along the Columbia river. Two of the Howell sons were noted biologists. Thomas wrote a book on botany called “Flora of the Pacific Northwest.”

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