Back When in Benton County

Part 7

The Kings of Kings Valley

by Kenneth Munford

Serepta and Nahum King had sixteen children between 1808 and 1835.  Three of them, Dulany, Hannah, and James Russell died before they reached their 'teens.  The rest, except the two eldest daughters, Saretta, 37, and Lucretia, 36, came to Oregon with their parents by covered wagon in the summer of 1845.  This clan, with approximate ages at the time, included:

Nahum, 62 and Serepta, 54

John, 32 and his wife, Susan and their three children, Luther, 5, Electa, 3 and a 9-month-old boy.  All but Luther lost their lives in the Columbia Gorge.

Hopestill, 30, and her husband, Lucious Carolus Norton, 27, and their children, Issac, 3, and Wiley, 1.  They later had eight more children.

Stephen, 27, and his wife Anna Maria (Allen), 22.  They had no children*.  He had long been in poor health and did in 1852.

Isaac, 26.  He came west as a a bachelor but married Almeda, daughter of another Kings Valley settler, Lazarus VanBebber, in 1847.

Amos Nahum, 23.  He married Melinda Fuller, 19, in 1846.  Her family had traveled from Missouri in the same wagon train with the Kings and also settled in Benton County.

Sarah, 22, and her husband, Rowland Chambers, 32, and their children, Margaret, 3, and James 1.  "Sally" died of camp fever in eastern Oregon.

Lovisa, 17.  She married widower Rowland Chambers in Washington County in February 1846 before the family moved to Kings Valley.  In addition to her deceased sister's two children, Lovisa eventually had fourteen of her own to raise.

Abigail, 16.  As the culmination of another covered-wagon romance, she soon married Price Fuller, 20.

Lydia, 14.  She later married another member of the 1845 immigration, Jonathon Lafayette Williams.

Solomon, 12.  he married his brother Stephen's widow, Anna Maria, in 1853.

 Rhoda Ann, 10.  She was later twice married, first to John Phillips and later to Eli Summers.

Beginning next week we will have a series giving more details on the careers of each of the above.

Next:  Roots of the King Family

*Note:  These installments of "Back When in Benton County" are being presented in their originality.  Stephen and Anna Marie did have a son.