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Photo scanned from the book "Spirits of the Salmon River", by Kathy Deinhardt Hall

*Information below submitted by Chris Cornett

March 5, 1914

JOHN LEVANDER DIES - Death of a Well Known Resident of Goff Occurred February 24

A report of the recent death of J. O. Levander, the well known pioneer of Goff, in the Salmon river country, is contained in the following clipping from the Meadows Eagle.  Mr. Levander was a highly respected citizen of this county and his death will cause regret and sadness among his many friends.  The Eagle’s comment follows:

News of the death of John O. Levander reached town yesterday and brought with it sorrow to the many friends of the old pioneer.  He passed away Wednesday, February 24, 1914 at his home near Goff, attended by his son and daughter, who have been his faithful attendants during the weeks of his last illness.  We understand his funeral will take place tomorrow on the arrival of his children living in Washington county and in Oregon.

Mr. Levander has been a prominent figure in the life of this part of Idaho for nearly fifty years.  He was a broadminded man of generous impulses and never forgot the hospitable ways of the pioneer.  The stranger, tho in rags, never failed to find food and shelter and help at his home.  He endured the hardships of the pioneer bravely and enjoyed quietly and without ostentation  the prosperity that came to him as a reward of his industry.  He filled the honor many posts of duty and as husband, father, brother, friend and public official proved himself every inch a man.  Who can do more? 

May he rest in peace and enjoy in the life to come, the reward of his services to mankind on earth.

Exerpt from  the book, “Spirits of the Salmon River” by Kathy Deinhardt Hill, -----John and Sarah Levander share the only headstone in the Levander family cemetery, located on Race Creek Road, one-quarter mile west of Highway 95.  According to the book, the Levander house still stands, and the cemetery is located directly north of the house where purple irises bloom every spring.----even though the picture is not clear, it appears to be a beautiful stone monument with inscription--Chris Cornett


Idaho County Free Press, March 12, 1914


A recent dispatch from Riggins contains the following obituary of the late John O. Levander, who died there on February 24:  He was born at Gottenburg, Sweden, December 27, 1837.   The father was a civil engineer, born in Flanders, France, and went to Sweden with Bernadotte, who became King Charles XVI of Sweden and Norway.  He was closely associated with the king and held a high position in the army.  When 16 years of age John came to the United States, and went to visit his brother, who was a California miner, having dug gold on Spanish bar, American river.  In 1869, Mr. Levander fitted out a 6 yoke team of oxen, started for Pike’s Peak, but came to the Willamette valley.  He had a hard fight with the Snake Indians at the Malheur river, which is near the present agency.  Later on Mr. Levander drove cattle to California, returning to Douglas county, and later went to Pierce at the time of the excitement.  He mined for Captain Pierce who discovered the diggings and then went to Boise Basin.  He was on the stage with Governor Wallace and attended the first county convention ever held in Idaho at Pierce.  He refused to act as a delegate to the territorial convention at the Meadows.  At Boise, Mr. Levander freighted and also located a ranch.  In 1891 Mr. Levander came with his wife, Sarah, to the Salmon river country, where he established a store, and also conducted a hotel.  Here he resided till the time of his death.  Mr. Levander was one of the most honorable citizens of the Salmon river section.  That he had a great host of friends was evidenced by the large concourse of people who attend his funeral services.  He leaves five sons and daughters to mourn his loss, Emma J. Hart of Union, Oregon; Edgar, of Cambridge, Idaho(biography located in the book, “Illustrated History of North Idaho, 1903”, Homer of Riggins, Ella May Riggle of Goff, Idaho(Allen L. Riggle biography, Illustrated History of North Idaho, 1903) and Virgil of Asotin, Washington

Note: In addition to the information above located in his biography in the book, “Illustrated History of North Idaho, relates he was the son of Gustave and Jane (Kay) Levander.  Jane was born in  London, 24 June 1796.  Her father was a lieutenant in the British army.  In 1884, he removed to the Meadows for his wife’s health and there raised stock.  Mr. Levander was prominent in getting the wagon road to the little Salmon, building part of the road by his own contribution. 

In 1864, at Boise, Mr. Levander married Miss Sarah E. Cox, of Gentry county, Missouri; this was the first marriage celebrated in the Boise valley and occurred in a tent.   Mr. Cox was a pioneer of Oregon.  Mrs. Levander has the following brothers and sisters, John, Jesse, Oliver, Elvira Prosser and Martha Teal.  Mr Levander is the youngest of this family and his only brother, Charles A. died recently.  His wife, Sarah, passed away May 29, 1909—“River & Prairie News, 1904-1913”, compiled by Carol Anglen.  



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