Elijah "Lafe" Lafayette Bristow

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Elijah "Lafe" Lafayette Bristow

Also Known As: "Lafe Bristow"
Birthdate: (55)
Birthplace: McDonough County, IL, USA
Death: May 21, 1887 (55)
Salem, OR, USA
Place of Burial: Salem, OR, USA
Immediate Family:

Son of Elijah Bristow and Susannah Bristow
Husband of Minerva Jane Bristow and Harrietta "Hattie" Eugenia Bristow
Father of James Rodgers Bristow; Lillian Llewellyn Perkins; William Elijah Bristow; Paul Lafayette Bristow; Eugene Hill Bristow and 1 other
Brother of Elizabeth Elkins Hendricks; John Kennedy Bristow, Dr.; Henry Gabbert Bristow; Sarah Brown Bristow; Mary "Polly" Ann Callison and 7 others

Occupation: newspaper man/State Legislature
Managed by: Private User
Last Updated:

About Elijah "Lafe" Lafayette Bristow

BIOGRAPHICAL: (Source- "Illustrated History of Lane County, Oregon." Portland, Oregon: A. G. Walling, publisher, 1884. pg. 476)

ELIJAH LAFAYETTE BRISTOW Was born in McDonough county, Illinois, January 2, 1832, and crossing the plains to Oregon in 1848, joined his father Elijah Bristow, the pioneer resident of Lane county, in October of that year. He at once embarked in agricultural pursuits and improved a farm at Pleasant Hill, and while a resident there served as Justice of the Peace during the years 1857 to 1859 inclusive. He now sold his farm taking up his abode in Eugene city, and in 1859 was a clerk in the office of the Surveyor General. In 1860 he abandoned this position and engaged in a mercantile business, and erected the first brick building in Eugene City in 1866.

In 1871 Mr. Bristow was elected Grand Master of the Independent Order of the Odd-Fellows for Oregon, Washington and Idaho, and in 1882 was chosen Grand Patriarch of the Encampment branch of that order, serving in each capacity one year. In 1873 he was appointed one of the Capitol Building Commissioners and held the office for one year. In 1874 he sold his business and moved to Salem where he purchased the newspaper "Mercury," which he edited and published for five years and a half.

After a residence of thirty-six years in Oregon, Mr. Bristow is still as active as when he first made the acquaintance of the "Wim-a-wha-la illahe," with its beautiful woods and undulating prairie lands. When others went to the mines in quest for gold he remained at home, and, finding the lack of companionship hang heavy on his hands he studied the dialects of the Indians in Lane county and from them learned many of their traditions, with which his memory to-day is well stored. In business he has always stood as a pattern of honor and integrity, while the distinguished mark of favor bestowed upon him by the fraternities to which he belongs is a true test of the high estimation in which he is held. To Mr. Bristow we are indebted for much valuable information concerning the history of Lane county; may his honorable career accompany him to a green old age.


OBITUARY: At his home in Salem, on Saturday, May 21, 1887, at 11 o'clock a.m., E. L. Bristow, aged 55 years.

Lafe Bristow is dead. To all who were acquainted with him and who knew his sterling qualities, this simple announcement will bring a pang of sincere sorrow, for the subject of this sketch, now free from the cares and sorrows of this world, was a good man and citizen, and an honest and faithful friend. He was born on January 21, 1832, in McDonough county, Illinois, and came to Oregon in the early pioneer days, and settled in Lane county.

He was first married at Cloverdale, Lane county, to Jane Jones, and this union was blessed with four children, two of whom are dead. The two living are Paul L. Bristow, of Lane county, and Mrs. H.C. Perkins, of the same county. He was married to Hattie E. Hill at Eugene City on November 5th, 1865, and they have lived a happy life together until the union was severed by his death. The issue of this marriage was two children, one of whom is dead, the other, Eugene Hill Bristow, of Salem.

Mr. Bristow was in the mercantile business in Eugene City, in partnership with Hon. T.G. Hendricks, of that city, who is a relatives of the deceased, for a number of years, but sold out to his partner and came to Salem in 1874. He was editor and manager of the Salem Daily Mercury for a few years, and afterwards a partner with John G. Wright in the grocery business. He sold out to Mr. Wright and was for a time assistant warden at the penitentiary.

He afterwards went to Portland, and for several years manager of the Daily Standard in that city. He was a member of Anniversary Lodge, No. 13 I.O.O.F. of Salem, and had been a zealous worker in the order for many years. He was Past Grand Master and also Past Grand Patriarch. He was representative to the Sovereign Grand Lodge held in San Francisco in 1869.

Mr. Bristow had not been well for a long time. Several weeks ago he was tendered the position of special agent of the state for the investigation of swamp land matters, but his failing health would not permit of his acceptance, and since that time he has rapidly sunk, nearing the end with calm resignation. He died as he had lived, an honest and honorable man, against whose name was never even whispered the taint of scandal or corruption.

The funeral will take place tomorrow (Monday) , May 23d, at 2 o'clock p.m., under the auspices of the Odd Fellows and hi remains will be laid to his final rest in the I.O.O.F. cemetery. Grand Master Dosch, Grand Secretary Bacon, Past Grand Master Walton, Past Grand Master Backensto, Grand Representative Gamble, Grand Representative Tweedale, and other prominent Odd Fellows from abroad will be present and assist in the ceremonies.

Daily Oregon Statesman 22 May 1887 3:3

(bio source: [fg.cgi?page=sourceDetail&sourceId=8 Salem Pioneer Cemetery Website)]

Inscription: E. L. Bristow Born Jan. 2, 1832 Died May 21, 1887 Pioneer of 1848

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Elijah "Lafe" Lafayette Bristow's Timeline

January 2, 1832
McDonough County, IL, USA
December 24, 1853
Age 21
Cloverdale, OR, USA
December 14, 1855
Age 23
Cloverdale, OR, USA
December 30, 1858
Age 26
Cloverdale, OR, USA
March 21, 1861
Age 29
Eugene, OR, USA
August 12, 1866
Age 34
Eugene, OR, USA
August 30, 1873
Age 41
Eugene, OR, USA
May 21, 1887
Age 55
Salem, OR, USA