Tuesday, December 18, 2007

Promise, Oregon

A few years ago my family decided to get together and travel to Promise, Oregon to see if we could locate the family homestead where our Great Grandmother, from Sweeden and Great Grandfather had decided to make their home. The story has it that my Great Grandmother chose this piece of property as it reminded her of her home in Sweeden. The lilac bush that stands alone now actually stood at the back corner of the house, where my Dad was born, and when you walk down to the lilac bush you can actually still see the corner stone of the foundation. The view all the way around from the front of the house over looks a beautiful field that just disapears on the edge of the Mountains, but yet overlooks the Blue Mountains in every direction.


This is what was left from some farming equipment and wagon that my Great Grandfather and Grandfather used to work the land. My Great Grandfather was better known for his farming, and has his picture along with many of my Dad's siblings, pictures hanging in the museum in Willowa, Oregon. My Grandmather met my Grandfather while she was teaching at the school which is up the road from the homestead. Her family homesteaded somewhere near there, but no one is actually sure where.


Though the house is not standing today, this is the original barn that my Great Grandfather built. Every year they have a reunion for the families of the homesteaders there in Promise Oregon. They have now turned the old Grange Hall into a museum with furnishings and household things they have been able to find out of the old homesteads. They even put out a calendar every year that has pictures of what every original homestead looks like. When I had my website I actually was contacted by someone who had been to this reunion. She said it was a lot of fun and that someone was asking about my family. Some year I would love to go to one of these reunions. Who knows it might just happen yet. My Great Grandmother has been laid to rest in the nearby cemetary near the place she chose to call home.
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13 comments:

  1. Wow....that sounds like a very special journey for your family!
    Thank you for sharing it :)

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  2. Great Pictures.. I would love to someday attend the Carper Reunion they have there every year.

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  3. I visited the Promise Cemetery in August, 2008, and found the gravestones of several relatives. I would like to correspond, in order to learn more about the history of Promise, and to share what we know of our Wallowa County ancestors. Please feel free to leave me a message at rkmrtndl@hotmail.com

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  4. my great grandfather came to the Promise country in the 1890s. He homesteaded in the Groseman area a few miles west of Promise. His brother was the first person buried in the Promise Cemetery. My great grandfather, Joner Trump. My other great grandfather also came from West Vergina and homesteaded in Promise. Hi name was Sannar. He was married to my great grandmother, whos made name was Carper. I know a lot about Promise Oregon. I live in Elgin Oregon

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  5. Alyssa (McDonald) PlutAugust 2, 2011 at 2:05 PM

    I too trace my ancestry back to Promise. My grandparents were both born and raised in Promise and my dad spent his first 10 or so years in Promise (went to school in the one room school house). My family ancestry is McDonald/Doud/Gorbett/Phillips. I have been to several Gorbett (thus Phillips and Carper) reunions as well as a few Promise reunions. It has been about 20 years since I have been back to Promise and would LOVE to take my girls some day.

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  6. HI My name is Michele. My Great Grandmother was also from Promise, Her maiden name is Phillips. We have family members that have traveled back for the reunion a couple of times. I would find it of interest to not only travel to Promise but to meet up with some of you that also have interest in Promise Oregon

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  7. My husband's mother was born in either Promise or Flora. Still trying to figure it out. She talked about snow skiing to school. Her mother was a school teacher, but I believe she taught in Asotin before getting married. My mother-in-law was born in 1918. Anyone have any information on the area around that time?

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    1. There is a lot of information about this area during that time. I don't have much, but I know that the museum in Wallowa is full of articles and information dating clear back. My Grandmother taught school in Promise Oregon until she married my Grandfather in 1916, that is where they met. My family would have been living there during the 1918's.

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  8. Promise..... As I write, I also plan and my mind wanders back to when Johnny Weaver and Bertha Reed were still alive and I walked through the hills with them as they told stories of their childhood. The son and daughter of Lucy Carper, grandchildren of Joseph Kyle Carper, these two were half siblings and our family had taken the time to attend the Carper family reunion at the grange over memorial day weekend. The stories... grampa still had rattles from the nests of rattlers he killed there in those deep gullies, and great aunt Bertha speaking on the forest fire she had caused and never told anyone of until that day as we walked the hillside. I returned with my sister last fall for a week long visit after discovering that Lucy's sister Alice had committed suicide and drank a toast to her short life at the cemetary as the sun set. She deserved to be remembered. And as we mused, plans were once again set in motion attend a memorial day reunion, which is what we are preparing for this spring. Can't wait to visit those hills again....

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  9. Who are your great grandparents? I grew up in Promise, and my great grandmother was also from Sweden. My great grandparents were Maude and Vesper Henderson.

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  10. Hi there. I am related to the Phillips family and visited Promise in 2010. My mom tells me that they were part of the founding families of Promise(?) I have heard about the Promise, OR reunion and think it would be a kick to visit it, but the only place I can find anything about it is here on your blog site. Do you have any more information about it?

    Thanks,

    Ted

    tedcebula@gmail.com

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  11. Hi there. I am related to the Phillips family and visited Promise in 2010. Beautiful country up there. I have heard about the annual reunion and think it would be a kick to attend, but the only place I can find info about it is here on your blog site. Do you have any more info about it?

    Thanks,

    Ted
    tedcebula@gmail.com

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  12. I'm reading a book called Promise" Promise, the Oregon Country" by Daniel Masterson. He talks of moving there and of the school and grange and people. I thought you might like it. Thanks for your blog. And pictures!!Amy

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