John B. Davies

From "History of Idaho, The Gem of the Mountains," Vol. III, pg. 309f. The S. J. Clarke Publishing Co. Chicago, 1920.

John B.Davies, one of Idaho's pioneers, who has resided in or near Emmett through practically his entire life, or for a period of more than half a century, came to this state in 1862 with his parents from Racine, Wisconsin, being then a babe in his mother's arms, less than a year old. He was born in Racine, August 31, 1861, a son Thomas J. and Margaret (Williams) Davies. The father was born in Wales and came to the United States in young manhood, being married in Wisconsin. His wife was probably of American birth but of Welsh descent, her parents having come from the little rock-ribbed country of Wales to the new world.

John B. Davies, whose name introduces this review, was the firstborn child of his parents who in the spring of 1862 crossed the plains to Idaho with wagons and proceeded at once to Fort Boise, now the capital of the state. Another child, a daughter, Whom they named Idaho Platte Davies, was born while they were enroute to the west, her birth occurring on the Platte river in a covered wagon. She, however, passed away at the age of twe've years. The father met an accidental death shortly after reaching this state and in the spring of 1867 his widow became the wife of Douglas Knox, one of the honored pioneer residents of Idaho, who is mentioned elsewhere in this work and who is now living in Emmett at the age of seventy-six years. Mrs. Knox passed away in 1885, her death being the occasion of deep and widespread regret not only to her immediate family but to all with whom she had been brought in contact during the long period of her residence Idaho.

John B. Davies was mainly reared on the Douglas Knox ranch about a mile below Emmett. His educational opportunities were very limited, as there was no school that he could attend nearer than Boise. He has always been a ranchman and dealer in live stock and is still the owner of a good ranch property of one hundred and sixty acres three miles below Emmett. Until a recent date it was just double its present size, three hundred and twenty acres being comprised within the boundaries of his farm. After having lost his only son, who died in France during he recent World war, he sold one-half of his ranch, including that portion on which the buildings stood, and removed to Emmett, where he has a comfortable home about a dozen good town lots.

On the 19th of March, 1888, Mr. Davies was married to Miss Mary Ellen Jackson, who was born in Daviess county, Missouri, June 21, 1865, a daughter of John L. and Susanna A. (Garr) Jackson. Her father was born in Warren county, Indiana, December 25, 1830, and was married in Carroll county, Illinois, August 3, 1851, to Susanna A. Garr. Ten years later, on the 3d of August, 1861, he enlisted in Company E, Twenty-third Missouri Infantry, with which he served for over three years in the Civil war, being honorably discharged with the rank of sergeant at Atlanta, Georgia, September 22, 1864, his three years' term having expired. He came from Kansas to Idaho in 1872, settling first at Boise, but in the fall of the same year removed with his family to Emmett. He passed away at the Soldiers Home in Boise, March 16, 1915. His wife was born in Hamilton county, Indiana, her 17, 1833, and died near Weiser, Idaho, November 17, 1905. Their daughter, Mrs. John B. Davies, was one of ten children, of whom seven are living.

Mr. and Mrs. Davies was born but one child, a son, John T., who went to France with the American army and was mortally wounded in battle of October, 1918, passing away in a hospital in France about a month later. He was born June 17, 1890, and was therefore twenty-eight years of age death occurred. He had always resided on the ranch with his parents and was a most devoted son. He carried a ten thousand dollar government insurance on his life, but the fifty-seven dollars and a half which is now paid to his parent is but poor consolation indeed for the loss of their only and deeply loved son.

Mr. Davies is a Mason who exemplifies in his life the beneficent spirit of the craft. In politics he is a democrat but has never been a candidate for office. His life has been most exemplary in many respects. That he has lived at peace with his fellowmen is indicated in the fact that he has never had a lawsuit and that he has been honorable in all business affairs is manifest in the fact that he has never been sued nor has he ever sued anyone. He has never taken a drink of liquor in his life, and at all times his integrity and sterling worth of character have been recognized by his fellowmen, who ever speak of him in terms of warmest regard, for his life measures up to the highest standards.

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