Biography of Robert E. Lockwood

The editor and proprietor of the Weiser Signal was born in Kirbyville, Josephine county, Oregon, February 15, 1858, and is of English descent. His grandparents were William and Lucy (Lord) Lockwood, and his father was Robert Lockwood, Sr., a native of Australia, in which country he married Miss Clara Sophia Belknap. They became residents of Oregon in 1853, the father engaged in mining on Rogue River. In 1871 he removed to Albany and later located in Canyon City, in the John Day valley of Oregon, where he continued his mining operations and also acted as deputy sheriff of the county, which position he ably filled for twelve years, under both Republican and Democratic administrations. In 1887 he declined to longer fill that office, but consented to remain three days under the newly elected sheriff. On the night of the third day there was a fire in the town. After it was extinguished Mr. Lockwood remarked that he would lock the prisoners in the cells and deliver the keys to the sheriff in the morning, but while performing that duty he was murdered by one of the prisoners. He was then in the forty-fourth year of his age, a brave man and a highly esteemed citizen who never faltered in the performance of any duty, no matter how hazardous. He left a widow and ten children, and Mrs. Lock-wood is still living, while six of the children also survive.

Robert E. Lockwood, whose name introduces this review, acquired his education in Canyon City, Oregon, and at an early age began to learn the printer’s trade and to make his own way in the world. On learning of his father’s death he returned to the funeral and remained at home until after the execution of the murderer. In 1878 he came to Idaho, where he was employed at tamping ties on the railroad, and afterward worked in the office of the Weiser Leader. He was for three months at Caldwell, in the employ of Steunenberg Brothers, and then began the publication of the Weiser Signal, with which he has since been connected. On the 31st of August 1882, a neutral paper, called the Weiser Leader, had been established, with Messrs. Stine & Mitchell in charge. The county had been created only three years previously. There had been only six issues of the paper when J. W. Haworth purchased Mr. Mitchell’s interest, and the firm of Haworth & Company was formed, while S. M. C. Reynolds was made editor. For a time the paper was published as an independent political journal, but later was changed to a Republican sheet. On the 25th of August 1883, Judge Henry C. Street became its manager; March 22, 1884, William P. Glenn became proprietor and editor, and in 1890 H. S. King, C. D. King and Frank Harris became its owners. Mr. Harris and H. S. King had editorial charge, while C. D. King was business manager. On the 1st of September 1890, Mr. Harris discontinued his connection with the paper, but the King Brothers continued its publication until September 1, 1891, when Robert E. Lockwood became its owner, editor and publisher. He had worked on the paper for some months prior to the fall of 1890, at which time he had severed his relations therewith, and on the i8th of December, 1890, issued the first number of the Weiser Signal. Both papers were then published until September 1, 1891, when Mr. Lockwood purchased the Leader and merged it into the Signal, since which time he has made his paper a large and valuable weekly, independent paper, devoted to the advancement of the interests of Weiser and Washington county. Its editorials are apt, concise, readable and instructive, and the Signal is now enjoying a large circulation and an extended advertising patronage. Mr. Lockwood is a man of strong mentality and broad general in-formation, and has made his journal one of the best in southwestern Idaho.

In politics he has taken a deep and active interest and was a member of the state convention which nominated Frank Steunenberg for governor.

In the fall of 1898 Mr. Lockwood was the nominee of the Democratic, Populist and Silver-Republican parties for the office of state senator, a fact which indicated his personal popularity and the confidence reposed in him by people of different political faith throughout the district.

Mr. Lockwood was married March 17, 1891, to Leah Norah Wilson, a native of Illinois. She is a cultured lady and a valued member of the Congregational church. By their marriage there is one son. George Edwin. Socially Mr. Lockwood is a representative of the Masonic fraternity, and he is recognized as a most prominent and influential citizen.


Illustrated History of the State of Idaho. Chicago: The Lewis Publishing Company. 1899.

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