Biography of William Arnold

WILLIAM ARNOLD. – One of the best known men in northeastern Oregon, capable and upright, a pioneer of the country and one who has faithfully done his part in the development of the same, having met the dangers and hardships and self-denials incident to a life on frontiering in this region in early days, the subject of this article is eminently fitted for representation in this volume, and it is with pleasure that we accord space to him, and we desire to add that in connection with his abilities and courage, he has manifested excellent moral qualities and integrity that is constant and unswerving.

William Arnold was born in Washington county, Nebraska, on March 16, 1856, being the son of Ansel and Jenett (Faster) Arnold. The father came to Nebraska as Indian agent in 1854, and also gave some attention to farming in that state. In 1858, he was called hence by the messenger of death, and his remains sleep in St. Joseph, Missouri. We have but little information of our subject until 1877, when he made the trip to the west, landing in Lagrande in that year. The following year he accompanied a drove of cattle to Cheyenne as one of the drivers, and then returned to Oregon. On this trip, while they were crossing the trail near Boise, Idaho, they were attacked by the Indians, and for twelve days the fight continued, the stockmen finally being able by dint of almost superhuman endurance and the most intrepid daring and perilous fighting, to get away with the entire drove of cattle. Later he took another trip through Nebraska and Colorado, and then returning to Oregon took up the stock business. In 1884 Mr. Arnold went to the Coeur d’ Alene country and commenced his career of driving stage. He handled the ribbons there for two years and then came to this section and has since operated in the staging business. In cold and heat, amid storms and sunshine, he has taken his seat on the well-known concord vehicles and guided the horses over the trail for nearly twenty years, and there is not a man in the entire region that has so many warm friends and is so widely known as William Arnold, the capable, faithful, and courageous stage driver of Elgin.

Mr. Arnold was married to Miss Cinda, daughter of Jackson and Martha Graham, on June 1, 1887, and four children have gladdened this happy union, as follows: Earl, Mable, Guy and Lolace. Mrs. Arnold was born on September 9, 1868. Mr. Arnold makes his home in Elgin and is operating the line from that place to Joseph. He is affiliated with the A.O.U.W. in Elgin. Our subject is held in high esteem by all who know him, and his figure is familiar at all points along the line, and friends are everywhere, and we are pleased to state that his upright life and kind demeanor have fully merited all these enconiums bestowed by admiring friends.



An Illustrated history of Union and Wallowa Counties: with a brief outline of the early history of the state of Oregon. Western Historical Pub. Co., 1902.

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