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Jacob Redding Meeker

Birth
New York, USA
Death 30 Oct 1869 (aged 64)
Pierce County, Washington, USA
Burial Lakewood, Pierce County, Washington, USA
Memorial ID 63242292 · View Source
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Jacob Redding Meeker was born in the family home and reared in Ithaca, NY, then as a young man went to Butler County, Ohio. Jacob was a miller and built a log cabin at Monroe, Butler County. In 1836 the family moved to Lockland, Hamilton County, Ohio There on October 26, 1836 he married Phoebe Baker and started a family. In 1837 the family moved 200 miles to Attica, Fountain County, Indiana, on the Wabash River. Phoebe and the two youngest rode in the covered wagon and Uncle Usual Meeker drove, while Oliver and Ezra walked. In 1841 the family moved to the suburbs of Indianapolis, where John went to school. In 1845 after receiving a letter from Grandfather Baker, Jacob and Phoebe drove back to Ohio where they were given $1000 worth of coins. With this money they purchased a farm five miles southwest of Indianapolis. Young Ezra did much of the farm work, as Jacob continued working at the mill. In 1854 the decision was made to move to Puget Sound. Oliver had returned from Puget Sound that winter to guide them west. His wife Phoebe and son Clark died on the trail. These delays resulted in the party running low on supplies and word was sent forward to his son Ezra who rode out to meet the train near present day Walla Walla, WA. Ezra guided the party over Naches Pass, their train being the last one in that year. After joining his sons on their McNeil Island homestead, Jacob informed them that they were moving to the mainland. In the village of Steilacoom they ran a store called J. R. Meeker & Sons. While in Steilacoom, Jacob met the widow Nancy Burr and on March 2, 1855 the two were united in marriage. The Indian war coming on, the settlers in Pierce county were compelled to seek refuge at Fort Steilacoom in soldier's garrison, and from that place Mr. and Mrs. Meeker went to Steilacoom plains, settling on a claim of 320 acres in what today is known as South Tacoma. There they lived until they pre-empted 160 acres in Puyallup valley. Around March 15, 1866 Charles Wood brought three pecks, or gallons, of hop roots to Steilacoom. They were intended for Jacob Meeker. John Valentine, who had come to Steilacoom for some reason, picked them up and packed them on his back fifteen miles to his father's place leaving a few roots with his brother Ezra as he passed by his Puyallup cabin. Thinking this was something he would do just this growing season Jacob planted the hop roots in his apple orchard between the rows of trees, instead of clearing a field and planting the roots properly. Ezra said there were four rows of hops, each about 36 feet long in his father's orchard. In their wildest dreams the Meekers would never have guessed that by these small steps they were embarking on a course of action that would make the Puyallup Valley famous and in the process make Ezra one of the wealthiest men in the state. Jacob harvested this small crop in September. At harvest the vines were cut, the poles were pulled from the ground and brought into the barn. There, the women and children of Jacob's family sat on chairs and picked the berries. They cured newly picked berries by spreading them in the loft over Jacob's living room where they slowly dried. Their efforts produced one bale, or about 185 pounds of hops. This product was sent to Mr. Isaac Wood in Olympia who paid them an astonishing 85 cents per pound or $157.25. This was more money than Jacob's farm made in total for the entire previous year. It was a huge sum of money for that period of Puyallup history and it drew attention and started the Puyallup Valley Hop industry

Children from the combined families of Jacob, Phoebe and Nancy.
John Valentine b. 13 Jul 1824
Manning S, b 13 July 1824 d. 20 July, 1824
Oliver Perry b. 1828
Ezra Manning b 1830
Hannah Jane b 1834
Usual Clark b 1837

Lewis Burr b. ca.1844
Emeline "Emily" Burr b. ca. 1843 married Johnathon Bates in the family home
Mariah Angelina Burr b. ca. 1847-1923 married Jerry Stilly
Lynus Burr b. ca. 1848
Samuel Burr b. ca. 1850
Sarah Burr b. 1854 Born on the Oregon Trail.
M. L. Meeker b. 1857 died in childhood
Horace G. Meeker b. 1860 died in childhood
Malinda Meeker b. 1863
Aaron Meeker b. 1865



Family Members

Parents
Spouses

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  • Created by: Dennis Larsen
  • Added: 23 Dec 2010
  • Find A Grave Memorial 63242292
  • Find A Grave, database and images (https://www.findagrave.com : accessed ), memorial page for Jacob Redding Meeker (28 Dec 1804–30 Oct 1869), Find A Grave Memorial no. 63242292, citing Old Settlers Cemetery, Lakewood, Pierce County, Washington, USA ; Maintained by Dennis Larsen (contributor 47401741) .