Étienne Lucier

Infobox Person
name= Étienne Lucier


caption=
birth_date= 1793
birth_place= Canada
death_date= 1853
death_place= French Prairie
occupation= fur trapper, farmer
spouse=

Étienne Lucier (1793-1853) was a fur trader in what is now the Pacific Northwest. At the time it was called the Oregon Country and claimed by the United States and called the Columbia District as claimed by Great Britain. He was one of two French Canadians to vote for the creation of a government for that region at the Champoeg Meetings. Moving to the Pacific Northwest originally to help establish Fort Astoria, he would later become the first farmer in what would become the state of Oregon.

Fur trade

In 1810, Lucier joined the Wilson Price Hunt party that journeyed overland to the mouth of the Columbia River to establish a fur trade outpost for the Pacific Fur Company.Chapman, J. S. (1993). "French prairie ceramics: the Harriet D. Munnick archaeological collection, circa 1820-1860 : a catalog and Northwest comparative guide". Anthropology northwest, no. 8. Corvallis, Or: Dept. of Anthropology, Oregon State University.] Soon after the establishment of Fort Astoria on the Columbia, it was sold to the North West Company.Horner, John B. (1919). "Oregon: Her History, Her Great Men, Her Literature". The J.K. Gill Co.: Portland. pp. 56-7.] By 1814 Lucier had joined that company and became a trader for them, and then married a Native American woman and moved to the Willamette Valley by 1814. After the merger of the North West Company and the Hudson’s Bay Company (HBC), he became an employee of the new company under the HBC name and made a land claim on what is now Portland, Oregon. Later he established a permanent land claim next to the Willamette Fur Post near Champoeg on the French Prairie by 1829. Chief Factor John McLoughlin of the HBC at Fort Vancouver helped Lucier with farming supplies, including livestock that helped establish Lucier as Oregon’s first farmer.

French Prairie

On the French Prairie, Étienne Lucier married for a second time and would have eight children combined between both wives. On his farm he raised pigs and hogs, cattle, peaches, and wheat over 80 acres. These 80 acres were enclosed by a split rail fence. Lucier’s farm had a one-and-a-half story double-hewn log home, a grist mill, a framed barn, and a warehouse used for wheat. His farm was adjacent to Pierre Belleque’s farm. On March 22 1836, he and 15 other French Canadian settlers on the prairie representing 77 settlers and their children signed a petition requesting a priest for the settlement from the Bishop of Juliopolis. [ [http://www.ohs.org/education/oregonhistory/historical_records/popupTrans.cfm?doc_ID=F6F38B27-0026-9B3C-5F55CF7C8BAC6B83 The Oregon History Project: From Willamette Settlers to the Bishop of Juliopolis.] Oregon Historical Society. Retrieved November 1 2007.] At that time he had six children.

In 1843, Lucier was a participant at the Champoeg Meetings that lead to the creation of the Provisional Government of Oregon.cite web
last =
first =
authorlink =
coauthors =
title = Beginnings of Self-Government
work = Settling the Oregon Country
publisher = End of the Oregon Trail Interpretive Center
date =
url = http://www.endoftheoregontrail.org/road2oregon/sa31provgovt.html
format =
doi =
accessdate = 2007-07-27
] He was one of two French Canadian pioneers that joined with the American bloc to vote for the creation of the government on May 2 1843. Then in 1851 Lucier became an American citizen in order to secure his land claim via the Donation Land Act.

In 1853 Étienne Lucier died, with his sons continuing to operate the family farm. At his death he was a man of some wealth in the region and left behind boats, the farm, farm tools, a threshing machine, and a buggy among other items.

References


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