Transcribed from "An Illustrated History of The Big Bend Country, embracing
Lincoln, Douglas, Adams and Franklin counties, State of Washington",
published by Western Historical Publishing Co., 1904.
FRED L. HAMERSMITH is a merchant
at Lamona, Washington. In addition to doing a good business in his
store, he oversees his farm of one-half section and acts as justice of
the peace. He was born in Buffalo, New York, on May 7, 1866, the
son of L. F. and Johannah (Libbert) Hamersmith, natives of Germany.
The mother came to the United States when six months old. The father
landed here when a boy and became a very prominent doctor. His primary
education was received in Germany and his training was completed in Cincinnati,
Ohio. He became very successful in the practice of medicine and operated
in several states. In 1887, he landed in Lincoln county and thereafter
led a retired life until his death, on January 10, 1900. He was descended
from a very wealthy family of nobility, which is prominent in france.
Their home being in the territory which Germany wrested from France they
became German subjects. Our subject's grandfather was an officer
for years in the French army. Fred L. came to Iowa with his parents
and there studied in the common schools until they removed to Oregon.
In 1882, he entered the Willamette university and completed the Latin scientific
course. He then spent two years in the study of medicine under a
preceptor and intended to fit himself for a professor of medicine, but
at the end of two years his health broke down and he saw it was useless
for him to attempt to continue further in the university. Accordingly,
on September 15, 1884, we find him in Lincoln county, Washington.
He took land by squatter's right near the present site of Lamona and commenced
to ride the range. For ten years he followed that occupation, putting
his earnings for the first five years into cattle. The winter of
1889-90 was so severe that he lost the entire bunch. He continued
on the range until 1893, until he was injured by a horse falling on him,
so severely that he was unfitted for further riding, then he learned the
blacksmith trade, then the carpenter trade, after that the jeweler trade
but not liking any of them, determined to farm. Shortly after that,
he opened a store in Lamona and gave his attention to that and renting
his land. During these years, Mr. Hamersmith has given all his spare
time to scientific investigations and has written some very good essays
on subjects along these lines. He is a man of first class education,
careful and deep research, and is a great thinker. He has conducted
many experiments along scientific lines and achieved results of considerable
good. Mr. Hamersmith is a substantial man and looked up to in this