James Reed, Donner Party

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James Frazier Reed

Birthdate: (60)
Birthplace: Sangamon Co., IL
Death: Died in Capitola, Santa Cruz Co., CA
Immediate Family:

Son of James Frazier Reed and Margaret Wilson Reed
Husband of Sarah Reed
Brother of Patty Reed, Donner Party; Thomas Reed, Donner Party and Charles Cadden Reed
Half brother of Virginia Reed, Donner Party

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About James Reed, Donner Party

Margret, Virginia, and James F. Reed, Jr. were rescued by the First Relief. Five-year-old Jimmy found it hard to struggle through the snow. His mother enticed him to continue with promises that when he reached California he would have his own horse and would never have to walk anymore. McGlashan wrote, "This promise was literally fulfilled. James F. Reed, Jr., since reaching California, has always had a horse of his own. No matter what vicissitudes of fortune have overtaken him, he has always kept a saddle horse." When John Denton gave out, he looked so comfortable resting by the fire that Jimmy wanted to stay with him.
    His big sister Virginia recounted, "we went over great hye mountain as steap as stair steps in snow up to our knees litle James walk the hole way over all the mountain in snow up to his waist, he said every step he took he was a gitting nigher Pa and somthing to eat." Years later she wrote, "He was the youngest child that walked over the Sierra Nevada."
    James Jr. joined his father and brother in mining and real estate ventures and spent most of his life in San Jose, California. He died at the home of his sister Patty in Capitola and was buried in San Jose's Oak Hill Cemetery.


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James Reed, Donner Party's Timeline

Sangamon Co., IL
Age 60
Capitola, Santa Cruz Co., CA