Joseph P. W. Davis
Joseph P. W. Davis was a
native of Ohio born in 1832, his parents are unknown. Not much is known
about his early life, he married Mary Emaline Buchanan on January 31, 1863,
in Howard County, Indiana. Mary E. Buchanan Davis was the daughter of Reverend
& Mrs. F.C. Buchanan, born about 1844 in Trimble County, Kentucky.
The Davis's crossed
the plains by covered wagon in 1864 reaching Healdsburg, Sonoma County
on June 15, 1864. Mary Davis became well known in that area of the state,
she became the mother of eight children. Sometime later, the Davis family
moved to Eagle Creek, which became Ono in 1883.
Joseph P.W. Davis was
a miner by trade and well known in Western Shasta. He led a rough but interesting
life. In April of 1874, near the location of Eagle Creek, Davis struck
a rich quarts claim on the North Fork of Cottonwood Creek. At this location,
in the Bald Hills, a new mining district was created and named Sunny Hill
Joseph P.W. Davis made
the original discovery claim at this site. A settlement known as Sunny
Hill was born in the Bald Hills area. This settlement near Eagle Creek
lasted well into the Twentieth Century, with many valuable mines. The Davis
family soon moved to Sunny Hill, where an infant child of theirs died,
it is buried at Sunny Hill.
For several years before
her death, his wife suffered from illness. Mary E. (Buchanan) Davis died
on January 17, 1886 from this illness, leaving behind seven children and
a husband. Mrs. Davis was a member of the Richland Baptist Church at Ono
whose pastor was Reverend William S. Kidder, this church was also called
the Eagle Creek Baptist Church.
Mary Buchanan Davis
was buried in the Ono Cemetery. Joseph P.W. Davis continued life raising
his children and watching them marry, having families of their own. Davis
struck several more rich gold and quart claims in his life.
When Shasta, Millville
and Redding battled for the county seat of Shasta County. Joseph P.W. Davis
owned and operated the Anderson Enterprise. It was a newspaper for the
City of Anderson.
At one time the pioneer mined
in Whiskeytown too, and then he moved to Tehama County, living there for
a short period of time. For over a year before his death Davis spent the
entire time in the Shasta County Hospital failing in health. The old guard
of Shasta County died on October 22, 1924, at the ripe age of ninety-one,
he is buried in the Redding Cemetery.
Contributed by Jeremy M. Tuggle
Resource: The Courier-Free Pess, Wednesday, October 24,
1923. Obituary of Joseph P.W. Davis.
The Weekly Shasta Courier, Saturday, February 6, 1886.
Obituary of Mary Buchanan Davis.
The Shasta Courier, Saturday, April 4, 1874. Sunny Hill
Mining District Discovery.