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.
JOSEPH B. PHILLIPS, a well-to-do
farmer and merchant of Davenport, was one of the many, who, in former days,
crossed the plains with horses and wagon, arriving in the northwest with
no means save the conveyance and team which brought him. Born July
1, 1862, in Benton county, Arkansas, he was the son of William C. and Lucinda
(Graham) Phillips. Mr. Phillips, senior, was a native of Alabama.
He early migrated to Arkansas, from which state he served in the Union
army during the Rebellion. His death occurred in 1881. Mrs. Phillips,
now sixty-eight years of age, was born in Indiana, and lives at the old
home in Arkansas. Their children are, Joseph B. Phillips, the subject
of our sketch, Benjamin W.; Mrs. Deborah Bartin; and Cole C. Phillips.
Mr. Phillips grew up on a farm, in the county
of his birth, where he received the education common to farmer lads, and
where, at the age of twenty, he taught school and farmed. On March
3, 1884, he was married to Josie Matherly, who was born in Page county,
Iowa, November 24, 1860. Mrs. Phillips' father, John Matherly, a
native of Kentucky, who served in the Civil War on the union side, is living
at Moscow, Lincoln county, Washington. Her mother, Elizabeth (Edwards)
Matherly, also is living.
In the fall of 1885, after traversing Colorado,
Wyoming and Idaho, in search of a good location, he took a preemption near
the present town of Moscow, afterward changing the filing to a homestead.
A large crop and good prices in 1897 brought him excellent profits.
In this year he sold his Moscow homestead and bought a farm about two and
one half miles northwest of Davenport. He now has four hundred and
eighty acres, all good grain land, four acres in fruit, besides two residences,
comfortable and modern. The one in the city of Davenport is an especially
convenient home, being supplied with all late equipments.
In the early part of February, 1904, Mr. Phillips,
having purchased a brick building suitable for the purpose, entered the
business world as a grocer.
Mr. Phillips is a man active in educational
matters, a member of the A. O. U. W., and of the A. F. & A. M., both
lodges of Davenport. He is the father of six children, Earl E., Ethel,
Eugene, Eva, Orlin, and Elsie.