Biography of Robert W. Worsham

This enterprising and representative citizen of Malheur County has the distinction of being one of the early pioneers of Oregon, while also he was among the very first in many mining regions where he endured the almost overwhelming hardships there encountered and wrought with a strong hand and courageous heart, doing well his part in the great development of the west. Robert W. was born in Hopkinsville, Christian County, Kentucky, on April 30, 1839, being- the son of Robert and Emeline (Elgin) Worsham. He was reared on a farm and in the winter months attended school. In 1852 he came with his parents across the plains and settlement was made in Clackamas County, near Oregon City. The trip was without danger or special incident except four of their number died with the cholera, although the train was small consisting of only eighteen wagons. The father had a large family and the first winter in Oregon City was a time of trial. Flour sold for thirty dollars per barrel and potatoes for five dollars per bushel. Of meat they had none except what game they killed the father took a half section of land and settled down to make a home, and in 1859, our subject went to the Similikameen mines and then on the Thompson River, in British Columbia whence he went to Fraser River and from there to the Canal rivet in the Cariboo district.

He followed prospecting and mining and many is the fight he had with the Indians and finally he was obliged to leave the region on account of their hostilities. In 186o he bought a farm and settled down near the home place and on April 11, 1861, occurred the happy event of the marriage of Mr. Worsham and Miss Lucy E., daughter of Joseph T. and Hannah E. Wingfield, of Oregon City. In 1862 he went to the Florence mines in Idaho, and later to the Oro Fino mines, being successful in both places. Then he returned home and spent a little time on the farm, after which lie opened a butcher business in Oregon City, remaining there until 1877, when he came to Malheur and bought a stock farm of one hundred and sixty acres four miles southeast from Malheur post office. He has added as much more since and now has a well improved estate and finely stocked, having also good house and barns and other buildings. In 1878 it is of note that Mr. Worsham was scout for the government in the Indian troubles which then occurred. He has followed stock-raising and farming and mining- since coming here and has some fine quartz properties at the present time. Mr. Worsham has been superintendent for the Eldorado mines for eight years.

The following children have been born to him and his estimable wife : Adelbert, deceased ; Florence E., wife of John B. Wood cock : James T. married to Effie E. Craig: Laura, deceased ; David K., married to Sadie 1 Bowman ; Charles, deceased ; Claud R. ; Walter N. The married children all live in the vicinity of Malheur. Mr. Worsham has a good home in Malheur and he dwells there at the present time. He and his wife are members of the Methodist church and they are devoted in the support of their faith.



Whitman, Marcus. An Illustrated history of Baker, Grant, Malheur and Harney Counties: with a brief outline of the early history of the state of Oregon. Chicago: Western Historical Publishing Co., 1902, 871 pgs.

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