LEWISTON TRIBUNE - February 5, 1933

Why They Call It Fenn

A crossroads store and post office on the North and South highway, a wheat and livestock shipping point on the Camas prairie railway - this comprises the village of Fenn, little Idaho County settlement which is small in population but rich in the historical association of its name.

Fenn, originally called Thorp, was named in honor of Stephen S. Fenn, native of Connecticut, who became one of the leading figures of Idaho's territorial era.  Mr. Fenn came west with the '49ers in the great gold rush to California, settling on the Yuba river.  Early in the '60's word reached California of the new gold strikes in Idaho and he moved to the colorful mining camp of Florence, where he conducted a general store in partnership with S.A. Woodward.

Mr. Fenn was appointed the first register of the Lewiston land office by President Andrew Johnson, holding that position in this city from 1867 to 1872.  He later established a ranch home on Camas Prairie and represented Idaho County in the legislature for five sessions.  In 1874 Mr. Fenn was elected territorial delegate to congress, being re-elected in 1878.

His son, Major Frank A. Fenn, also was a leading figure in early-day political history of Idaho and served with distinction in the Nez Perce Indian war of 1877 and the Spanish-American war.  His grandson, Lloyd A. Fenn, is a prominent Idaho County resident and superintendent of the Kooskia schools.

The village of Fenn was planned by the late John P. Vollmer and it and Reubens are said to be the only two of his town-building promotions which have survived as originally planned.  Nine miles northwest of Grangeville,  Fenn is an important wheat storage point and a local trading center.  The precinct had a population of 180 when the 1930 census was taken.

 

 

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