Gem County  ID GenWeb project


Gem Co. map
Reading & References
Sharon McConnel,
Gem County Coordinator

John R. McConnell

From "History of Idaho, The Gem of the Mountains," Vol. III, pg., 315-316. The S. J. Clarke Publishing Co. Chicago, 1920.

John R. McConnell, concentrating his efforts and attention upon sheep and cattle raising and ranching at Emmett, was born in Wayne county, Iowa, December 2, 1876; being one of nine children, seven sons and two daughters, whose parents were George W. and Mary E. (McConnell), who though of the same name were not related. The father was born in Iowa and now lives at Walla Walla, Washington. The mother, a native of Tennessee, passed away in 1902, after which Mr. McConnell married again. John R. McConnell has five brothers who are yet living: Frank A., Orville G., Richard L., Charles E., and Harold, and also a half brother, Ross McConnell. All of his oun brothers reside in or near Emmett.

John R. McConnell was but two years of age when brought by his parents to Idaho in 1878. His father took up a desert claim of six hundred and forty acres, on which the city of Caldwell now stands. The Oregon Short Line had not yet reached that point and in fact was not built to that place until about two years later and not until after George W. McConnell had sold his section of land, which he kept for only about a year and then let it go for the meager sum of three hundred dollars. The greater portion of the city of Caldwell has since been built upon his original desert claim and is today valuable property.

The youth of John R. McConnell was largely spent upon McConnell's Island at the mouth of the Boise, which was named in honor of the family, some older brothers of George W. McConnell having taken up the land on this island many years before. John R. McConnell attended the public schools of Idaho and was graduated from the Caldwell high school with the class of 1892. He later entered the University of Idaho, from which he was graduated in 1903. There was a period of seven years, from 1892 until 1899, when he was out of school. Since his completion of his university course he has devoted his attention to ranching and the raising fo live stock and has resided throughout the entire time either near or in Emmett. He has owned and occupied several ranches in the vicinity of the city and four years ago he took up his abode in Emmett in order to afford his children the opportunity of attending the town schools. He now has one of the most beautiful homes of Emmett, formerly the bungalow residence of Dr. B. 0. Clark at the corner of Second and McKinley streets. Mr. McConnell purchased this property in 1917, at the time Dr. Clark entered the service in the World war. The building was erected in 1912.

It was on 23rd of July, 1905, at Enterprise, Oregon, that Mr. McConnell was married to Miss Maude Lyman, who was born at Harrisville, Michigan, April 8, 1882, a daughter of Don and Mary Ann (Sinclair) Lyman, who were natives of Pennsylvania and Canada respectively. The father was born January 13, 1858, and the mother in Ontario, Canada, June 8, 1859. She passed away December 23, 1915, but Mr. Lyman survives and is now living at Twin Falls, Idaho. Mrs. McConnell has three sisters and two brothers. By her marriage she has become the mother of five children: EVelyn, born April 13, 1907; George B., whose birth occurred April 27, 1909; Robert V., whose natal day was October 7, 1910; John, born December 6, 1913; and Eleanor May, who was born June 21, 1917.

Mr. McConnell is a thirty-second degree Mason and member of the Mystic Shrine and also has membership with the Benevolent Protective Order of Elks. He is likewise a member of the Idaho Wool Growers Association. In Politics he is a republican but has never been a candidate for office, preferring to devote his attention to his business affairs, and by reason of his cloSe application he has become one of the successful sheep men of Gem county, having had as many as eighteen thousand sheep in the past which he owned in connection with others1. At the present writing he has about seven thousand ewes and ranges largely on his own lands. His business affairs have been carefully and extensively conducted and he is one of the prominent sheep and cattle men of Gem County.


1Bk 1 of Chattel Mortgages, p. Mc40, Gem County, Records:
Sept 10, 1915, "McConnel Bros" borrowed $50,000 from R. F. Bicknell against "7500 breeding ewes, all being grade Cottswolds & black face stock from 3-5 yrs old; 7500 grade Hampshire February & March lambs; all above sheep are branded in black pt. =>. One gray team named "Pedro" & "Dock"; one 4-yr. old roan cow & 1 6-yr old black cow." Release mailed May 1921 to J. R. McConnel

October 7, 1916, "McConnel Bros." borrowed $45,000 from R. F. Bicknell, against "6100 ewes, 1900 lambs, 50 head of horses, 1200 T of hay, 4000 bu. grain located on the McConnel Bros. Ranches near Emmett & Montour; 13 yr old mare, 13 yr old Jersey cow wt. 800, 3 heifers & 4 yearlings, 2 being yellow & 2 being dark red." Released May 4, 1921, mailed to J. R. McConnel.

In an earlier chattel mortgage dated April 7, 1914, "McConnel Bros.," are identified as J. R. McConnel, F. A. McConnel, & R. L. McConnel.




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