Seth Luen Pope papers, 1710-1979 PDF
- Pope, Seth Luen, 1837-1912
- Seth Luen Pope papers
- 1710-1979 (inclusive)17101979
- 4 cubic feet (8 document cases, 2 card file boxes, 3 customBoxes, 1 oversize folder)
- Collection Number
- Mss 701
- Papers of Seth Luen Pope of St. Helens and Portland, Oregon, and of Pend Oreille, Idaho. Included are extensive and detailed diaries dating from the 1850s to the 1910s, which include photographs; ships' logs; Masonic papers; and genealogical records. Also included are a small quantity of papers of Pope's brother William Henwood Pope; and papers of Pope's ancestors in the area of Fairhaven, Massachusetts.
- Oregon Historical Society, Davies Family Research Library
Davies Family Research Library
Oregon Historical Society
1200 SW Park Avenue
- Access Restrictions
The collection is open to the public.
- Funding for encoding this finding aid was provided through a grant awarded by the National Endowment for the Humanities.
Historical NoteReturn to Top
Seth Luen Pope was a descendant of early English settlers in Massachusetts. One ancestor, Thomas Pope (1608-1683), settled in 1670 in the area of Dartmouth (now Fairhaven), Mass., and there the family remained until the end of the 19th century. Other ancestors included Seth Pope (1648-1727), his son Lemuel Pope (1696-1771), and Lemuel's son Seth Pope (1719-1802). Seth's son Captain Seth Pope (1803-1886) commanded a number of merchant vessels and sailed throughout the world. His wife was Mary Henwood Pope (1811-1842), a native of East Cowes on the Isle of Wight in England. In 1850 Seth Pope sailed to California from New Bedford, Mass., on his ship Nonpareil. Settling eventually in St. Helens, Oregon, he served as postmaster, Treasurer of Columbia County, ran a general store, and continued in the shipping business until he retired to Portland in the 1870s. His two sons were William Henwood Pope (1839-1899) and Seth Luen Pope (1837-1912).
Seth Luen Pope was born in Fairhaven, Massachusetts in 1837, educated at Woodbury Cottage School, and came to Oregon by sea with his brother in 1854. He worked in his father's store in St. Helens, tried farming, then took up seafaring, serving on the bark Desdemona. After an accident in 1857, he worked at various occupations in St. Helens, then moved to The Dalles, Oregon, in 1862. In 1865 he went to Lake Pend Oreille, Idaho, where he was involved in running various steamboats on the lake. He came back to Oregon in 1870 and settled in Portland, and there he held positions with various firms, including Wells Fargo & Co.; the Masonic Building Association; the Portland Telephone, Telegraph & Light Company; the Portland Water Company; and the Transcontinental Street Railway Company. He was credited with installing the first telephone system in the city. During the year 1887 he visited mining camps in Okanogan and eastern Washington. From about 1874 to 1901 Pope lived in a house at the corner of SW Mill Street and Broadway in Portland -- a house he shared with Sarah Phelps Abrams, widow of his friend William Penn Abrams, a Portland pioneer. In 1901 they moved to a house at the corner of SW 17th Avenue and Taylor Street, where Pope died in 1912. Besides keeping extensive diaries, Pope was also an amateur photographer who documented the growth of Portland and surrounding areas.
Seth Luen Pope's brother, William Henwood Pope, left St. Helens for Olympia, Washington, in 1860. There he worked in the recorder's office and served as clerk and interpreter on the Tulalip Indian reservation. He later held many positions throughout the northwest in places such as Vancouver, Washington, The Dalles, Oregon, Walla Walla, Washington, and Coeur d'Alene, Idaho. Starting in 1867 he worked for seven years at the First National Bank of Idaho, then moved to San Francisco and went into the real estate business for two years. After visiting Mexico, Arizona, Utah, and Colorado, he settled in Portland in 1892 and became Auditor of Multnomah County.
Content DescriptionReturn to Top
The bulk of the collection consists of the extensive and detailed diaries of Seth Luen Pope. These volumes record daily activities and include logs of vessels on which he served in his youth. Diaries for later years include photographs taken by Pope, which document the development of Portland as well as Pope's family and friends. Among the other materials in the collection are early documents from Pope's Massachusetts ancestors in the Fairhaven area; a small amount of correspondence; a list of taxpayers in Columbia County, Oregon, for 1858; a list of passengers on the brig Nonpareil who sailed with Pope's father for San Francisco in 1850; log book of Nonpareil (included with logs of other sailing ships commanded by Pope's father); log of the whaling ship Congress from New Bedford, Massachusettes, 1843-1846; information on Pend Oreille, Idaho; a small amount of papers from Pope's brother William; and a biography of Portland pioneer William Penn Abrams.
Among the ancestral documents are: an account ledger from a store, 1749 to 1753, in Old Tennor, Massachusetts, kept by the owners, Mr. and Mrs. Pierce (apparently the Popes were regular customers of the store); a quit claim to Lemuel Pope, February 19, 1731; and a 1772 copy of a lot survey of 1710 for property on Sconticut Neck and Palmer Island, from Benjamin Cram, surveyor, Dartmouth, Massachusetts. Also included among the papers of Mary Henwood Pope (Seth Luen Pope's mother), is the diary of her voyage from London, England, to Boston in 1836; and a diary with brief daily entries from 1837.
Use of the CollectionReturn to Top
The Oregon Historical Society is the owner of the materials in the Research Library and makes available reproductions for research, publication, and other uses. Written permission must be obtained from the Research Library before any publication use. The Society does not necessarily hold copyright to all of the materials in the collections. In some cases, permission for use may require seeking additional authorization from the copyright owners.
Administrative InformationReturn to Top
Detailed Description of the CollectionReturn to Top
Series A: General papers of Seth Luen Pope, 1842-1979Return to Top
Original inventory of Seth Luen Pope bequest to the Oregon Historical Society
Bank book, wills and receipts
12 items, including masonic certificates and Oregon Historical Society membership
"Chalacha Pioneer" (hand written newspaper by Seth L. Pope)
|1855 July 1|
Columbia County, Oregon, tax list
Columbia County, Oregon, treasurer's record book (old vol. 1)
|1854 December 18-1856 July 7|
Correspondence, nautical notations, precious metals list, memoranda for cash receipts, receipts, accounts
Dalles, Oregon--Program for prayer service
|1866 December or 1867 January|
First Presbyterian Church, Portland--History
First Presbyterian Church, Portland--List of first members
Full list in oversize folder.
Letters received by Pope
Life at Pend Oreille, Idaho
Includes drawings, correspondence, notebook
Life of William Penn Abrams, by Seth L. Pope
Original typescript and related items
Photocopy of typescript and biographical materials
Log of the ship Congress (old vol. 2)
Log of the ship Congress on a whaling voyage from New Bedford, Massachusetts, around the world; Weeks, master, from December 18, 1843 to February 22, 1846. "Presented to Seth L. Pope of Portland, Oregon, by...Pardon L. Thomson, New Bedford, Mass., July 30, 1910."
Masonic ledger pages, with names of lodge members and dates of election
Masonic papers, with obituary of Seth L. Pope
Newspaper clippings, including 1842 history of England
Newspaper clippings on the opening of the Northern Pacific Railroad to Portland
Nobles of the Mystic Shrine--Certificate
|1891 Octover 28|
Water color sketches of flowers
Woodbury Cottage School records
Series B: Papers of other family members, 1710-1907Return to Top
Fish, Lucy Pope, "Mothers of Boston to the rescue"
Indenture (mortgage deed) for property in Leicester, England
Hand written document on parchment
|1710 September 30|
Pope, Ephraim--Will and estate account
Pope, Ephraim--Will and bank notes
Pope, Josua--Lemuel Akin letter
Includes school expenses, letter to Mr. Morton, inventory of Captain Pope's estate, transcript of Lemuel Pope's will, originals and transcript of codicil.
Pope, Mary Henwood--Papers
Includes diary of voyage from London to Boston, 1836, and diary of 1837.
Pope, Mary Henwood--Letter from her mother
Pope, Nathaniel--Plat of land
Original in oversize folder.
Pope, Seth (1648-1727)--Papers
Includes will, inventory of estate, land survey, quitclaim deed.
Pope, Seth (1720-1802)
Designation of executor, 1802 Pope, Seth (1803-1886, father of Seth Luen Pope)
Account book, general merchandise store, St. Helens, Oregon (old vol. 5)
Log books, kept as captain, mate, or passenger of various ships (old vol. 6)
Log of the brig Nonpareil
Seth Pope, commander and owner. Log includes voyage from New Bedford to San Francisco, 1850, and trips between California and Oregon.
|1850 January 11-1853 May 13|
"Narrative of Captain Seth Pope, 1820-1886" (hand written autobiography)
Pope, William H.--Copies of deeds
Pope, William Henwood (1839-1899)--Papers
Includes hand written dictionary of the Klickitat language
Pope, William Henwood--Certificates (2 items)
Misc. family members' papers
Survey notations for property at Palmer's Island, and legal agreement between Seth and Ephraim Pope
Pierce family account book, Fairhaven, Massachusetts
Series C: Diaries and journals, 1853-1912Return to Top
Unless otherwise noted, all items are from Seth Luen Pope.
Log of the Eagle Wing
Log of the Desdemona from Oak Point on the Columbia River to San Francisco
Orderly sergeant's book, Lewis River, Washington Territory
Diary (old vol. 7)
Diary (old vol. 8)
Diary (old vol. 9)
Diary (old vol. 10), "Daily life on father's claim at St. Helens, Oregon, building a log cabin"
Diary (old vol. 12)
Diary (old vol. 13), part 1
Diary (old vol. 14), part 2
Diary (old vol. 15), part 3
Diary (old vol. 16)
Diary/notebook--Jury trials and log of voyage from The Dalles to Rock Creek
Journal of voyage on the French Jo [?]
|1865 August 8-15|
Log (old vol. 17), Oregon and Montana transportation on steamer Mary Moody, Lake Pend Oreille
Memo book, Pend Oreille (old vol. 60)
Diary (old vol. 18)
Diary, "To Pend d'Oreille"
|1869 February 21|
Diary (old vol. 19)
Diary, "The Dalles" (old vol. 20)
Diary (old vol. 21)
Letter found in above volume
Diary of trip to the mountains and to Gale Creek
Diary (old vol. 22)
Diary, including Masonic temple notations (old vol. 23)
Diary (old vol. 24)
Diary (old vol. 25)
Diary, Portland to Lewiston, Idaho
|1878 June 28-July 4|
Diary (old vol. 26)
Diary, Astoria, Pend Oreille, Salem
|1879; 1881; 1903|
Diary (old vol. 27)
Contains diary of trip from Portland to Victoria, B.C., 1882; voyage from Portland to San Francisco, 1880; accounts; notes.
Diary (old vol. 11)
Diary (old vol. 28)
Diary (old vol. 29)
Diary (old vol. 30)
Diary (old vol. 31)
Diary (old vol. 52)
Diary (old vol. 33)
Diary, "To the Oknagon,"
|1886 October 1; 1887 June 7-26|
Diary, "Trip to Swauk mines, Kittitas Co. Wash Territory" (old vol. 63)
Diary (old vol. 65), trip to Cascade Tunnel
Diary (old vol. 34)
Diary (old vol. 35)
Diary (old vol. 36)
Diary (old vol. 37)
Diary (old vol. 38)
Diary (old vol. 39)
Diary, Lewis River (old vol. 66)
Diary (old vol. 41)
Diary (old vol. 42)
Diary, Portland to Seattle, Astoria, and Ocean Park (old vol. 67)
|1897 July-1898 September|
Diary (old vol. 43)
Diary (old vol. 44)
Daily journal with lists of "old folks" (old vol. 45)
Diary (old vol. 46)
Diary (old vol. 47)
Diary of trip, notes on family members (old vol. 48)
Diary (old vol. 45)
Papers found in above volume
Diary (old vol. 50)
Diary (old vol. 51)
Diary (old vol. 52)
Diary (old vol. 53)
Diary (old vol. 54)
Transcript from page of above diary, "Directions to be followed in case of my death"
Diary (old vol. 55)
Diary (old vol. 56)
Diary of visit to New England (old vol. 57)
Diary (old vol. 59)
Papers found in above volume--Inventory of estate of William H. Pope
Diary of William H. Pope
Diary of William H. Pope (old vol. 69)
Diary, unidentified author, camping trip to southern Washington
Names and SubjectsReturn to Top
- Subject Terms :
- Steamboats--Northwest, Pacific--History.
- Voyages and travels.
- Voyages to the Pacific coast.
- Personal Names :
- Abrams, Sarah Phelps.
- Abrams, William Penn.
- Pope, Lemuel, 1696-1771.
- Pope, Seth Luen, 1837-1912 (creator)
- Pope, Seth, 1719-1802.
- Pope, Seth, 1803-1886. (creator)
- Pope, William Henwood. (creator)
- Corporate Names :
- Congress (Ship : 1831-1865)
- Nonpareil (brig)
- Family Names :
- Pope family.
- Geographical Names :
- Columbia County (Or.)--History.
- Dalles (Or.)--History.
- Fairhaven (Mass.)--History.
- Pend Oreille, Lake (Idaho)--History.
- Portland (Or.)--History.
- St. Helens (Or.)--History.
- Form or Genre Terms :
- Logs (records)