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Surnames: Windle, Youtsler, Coats, Wjyman, Phipps, Young
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October 25, 1934
THOMAS J. WINDLE
Thomas Jefferson Windle was born in Union county, Ohio, March 19, 1862, where he spent his
childhood. While still quite a young lad the family moved to Nebraska. He helped with
the many duties of making a farm on the prairies in the early days.
In the spring of 1882 the family came to Idaho, coming as far as Ogden, Utah, by rail, the
rest of the way by team and wagon, landing in Boise City, May 23. That fall he got work
riding for Mr. Strode, a cattle King, helping to drive a large herd of cattle to
Winnemucca, Nev. At that time it was necessary to have a gun in readiness at all times to
protect oneself from vicious wild animals, outlaws, Indians, etc.
After delivering the cattle, he returned from there by rail to his old home in Nebraska.
In 1884 he returned to Idaho where he worked for some time with a surveying crew,
surveying a railroad from Ontario, Oregon to the coast. Later this road was built into
the interior of Oregon a short distance, going by way of Vale on the Malheur river. In
this work he became a valuable assistant to the head surveyor because of his accuracy of
eyesight. When he finished work on the survey he came to Washoe and helped his father who
had in the meantime settled on a ranch in that place. He imported the first hay baler
that was brought to the state when he was not helping his father, he went out and baled
hay for people who wanted that kind of work done. Later he secured work riding for “Cap
Irwin” on what is known as the “Old Erwin” ranch where he met Miss Rachel Youtsler, who
was assisting Mrs. Erwin with the housework at the time. On Jan. 29, 1891 he!
was united in marriage to Miss Youtsler and started his married life in Payette.
To this union four children were born, Addie May Howard, of Payette; Elsie Orfie Phipps of
Huntington, Ore.; Burrel Thomas Windle of French and Lilah Mary who passed on in 1910.
Mr. Windle engaged in business as a blacksmith, also hauled most of the bricks that built
the old part of the old Central school building which was destroyed by fire several years
He and his brother-in-law, William Eberle, engaged in the livery business. While in that
business he took a contract hauling supplies to the work camp that were building the
irrigation canals known at the present time as the Noble Ditch.
He was one of the first Marshalls of Payette city and was the instigator of the building
of the first board walks built through the business district.
About the year 1896 he moved on a ranch owned by Gov. Stephansen, known as the Noble ranch
near New Plymouth, known then as The Colony, where he and his wife owned and operated what
is believed to be the first incubator in the Payette Valley. Said incubator is in the
possession of the family yet.
Their home was a “Mecca in the Desert,” as it had the only shade trees that grew anywhere
near and was the only place that picnics could be held for miles around. Fruit grew there
in abundance. He lent a helping hand to those who were trying to settle “The Colony” of
New Plymouth. Their main street was nothing more than chuck holes and dust, it was known
as The Boulevard.
In the spring of 1888 Mr. Windle and his family moved to Little Willow, settling on an
unimproved piece of land which was a part of his father, Jacob Windle’s estate, where he
has resided continuously ever since, enduring the hardships and labor of carving a home
out of a fertile piece of land.
He always took an active part in everything which he thought could be a benefit towards
upbuilding of the community and was generous and tried to be fair to all who had dealings
with him. He never did anything by halves.
On Dec. 24, 1930, his wife passed on, since then he has made his home with his only son
Burrel and family on the old home place and was engaged in the chicken business, owning
quite a flock of white Leghorn pulets. Tuesday, Oct. 16, he took sick with what the
doctors pronounced blood poisoning on the middle finger of his left hand, caused by a
slight scratch. The doctors amputated the finger, and he was brought to his daughter’s
home in Payette and was doing well and all hopes were held out for his recovery. On
Thursday, Oct. 18, 1934, in spite of the doctors care and nurse Alice Jones, who is a
member of the family, he peacefully passed to his Eternal Home.
He leaves to mourn his passing, besides his three children, four grand daughters and an
only grandson, Thomas Windle Howard of Payette. Four sisters, Mrs. D. B. Coats of
Payette, Mrs. William Eberly, Mrs. William Whyman of Boise, and Mrs. Josie Young of
Redmond, Ore., and a brother, George, who resides on the Payette-Oregon Slope and a host
of relatives and friends. One sister, Mrs. Frank Whyman, and a brother, William, preceded
him. During his last illness his only thought was for the comfort of those about him and
tried to cause as little trouble as possible.
Services were conducted by Rev. Shuman Sunday afternoon at the Landon Undertaking Parlors.