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Israel Burr Cowen is the answer for Week 291 of Orofino History Trivia a special feature to celebrate the history and heritage of Clearwater Country.

Join in the discovery!

Monday: Came to Clearwater County in 1862

Tuesday: Mined awhile

Wednesday: Was sheriff

Thursday: Was Shoshone County Commissioner

Friday: Was postmaster in Pierce

Saturday: Was a legislator

Monday: Named after his father

Tuesday: Born in Buncombe, WI in 1828

Judge Israel B. Cowen

Wednesday: Was a probate judge

Friday: Taught school for three months

Saturday: Died in 1922 and was buried in Pierce

Monday: Came by boat to Lewiston

Tuesday: His first name is also the name of country.

Israel Burr Cowen (sometimes spelled Cowan) was born in Buncombe, WI in 1828. He came west to California as part of the 1849 Gold Rush. After hearing of the gold finds near Pierce, he came by boat from San Francisco to Portland and up the Columbia and Snake rivers to Lewiston and then overland on to Pierce in what was then Shoshone County. For a few years after his arrival in 1862, he was involved in mining.

Later he held various postions of trust such as being sheriff, county commissioner, probate judge, Pierce postmaster and a legislator. He also taught school for a few months. He died at the Shoemaker Hospital in Orofino at the age of 93 in 1922, was embalmed at the Orofino Undertaker's Parlor and buried in Pierce.

A news article at the time of his death characterizes him as: "efficient, scrupulously honest, always courteous and commanding the confidence and respect of everyone."

Judge Israel B. Cowen (Photo courtesy of Clearwater Historical Museum)

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Window on the Clearwater
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Orofino, ID 83544
Orofino 476 0733
Lewiston 208-503-7107
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