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As It Was: Early Pioneer Cabin Finds a New Home in Siskiyou County

One of the oldest structures in Siskiyou County is the “Davis Cabin,” built in the 1850s by Henry L. and Jesse F. Davis.  Today, the cabin is on display at the Siskiyou County Museum on Main Street in Yreka, Calif.

Henry Davis was the first of his family to go West. After finishing school in Ohio, he worked as a carpenter, and in March 1852 paid $100 for his prairie schooner passage across the Great Plains and reached Yreka in August 1852.  He mined as well as hired out as a carpenter and finally homesteaded in Shasta Valley in 1853. Jesse joined his brother in 1854.

In 1860, Henry journeyed back to Ohio to purchase a string of horses.  He also persuaded his longtime friend Edwin Coonrod to help him drive the horses back to California. The trip was not easy.  The pair lost some of their horses and ran into trouble with Native Americans.

Once back in Shasta Valley, Coonrod decided to stay and took up residence with the Davis brothers. Later he settled on what is known as the Terwilliger place in Little Shasta.

Source: Davis, Mrs. Issac I. "The Davis Cabin." Siskiyou Pioneer, The, vol. 10, 1958, pp. 64-68.

Gail Fiorini-Jenner is a writer and teacher. Her first novel "Across the Sweet Grass Hills", won the 2002 WILLA Literary Award. She co-authored four histories with Arcadia Publishing: Western Siskiyou County: Gold & Dreams, Images of the State of Jefferson, The State of Jefferson: Then & Now, which placed in the 2008 Next Generation Awards for Nonfiction and Postcards from the State of Jefferson.