An Illustrated History of Central Oregon, Western Historical Publishing Company, Spokane, WA. 1905, page 228-229.

* A portrait of Mr. Allen appears between pages 228 and 229.

* A portrait has been posted on-line at

CAPTAIN HENRY C. COE, a capitalist of Hood River and Portland, Oregon, is one of the best known men in the state of Oregon. From the earliest days until the present time, he has been closely identified with the upbuilding of the whole northwest and has been an active and aggressive worker along lines which have resulted in the most important improvements and upbuilding in the entire northwest. His labors and those of his brothers can not be separated from the opening and upbuilding of the country because they are a part and parcel of the history of the country itself and in the volume that treats of the Inland Empire and of the Pacific coast, mention is sure to be made of the large enterprises that they inaugurated and conducted.

Henry C. Coe was born in Livingston county, New York, on August 11, 1844. His father, Nathaniel Coe, was a native Of New Jersey, born in 1788, and his parents were natives of England. He was captain of a company in the War of 1812 and a well known patriot. In 1851 he came to Oregon as a representative of the postoffice department, being special postal agent, embracing the territory from California to British Columbia. He continued in this capacity for four years, or until the election of Pierce. After that, he came from Portland to Hood River with his family. Later, he filed on a donation claim which was the family home for many years. In i868 he died. He had married Miss Mary White, who was born in New York city in 1801. Her father was a native of England and her mother of New York city. Our subject was educated in the university at Forest Grove, entering when he was nineteen years of age, and after completing his course he went to work on the river from deck hand to master of the craft, and has filed every position on board the river boat and knows the business thoroughly. He took out master's papers in 1877 and has been on the river more or less since the time he first started. In 1869 he inaugurated a side venture of cattle raising in the Yakima county, Washington, and continued the same for five years. During this long period of active business life, a man of Captain Coe's energy and wisdom could but amass a large for-tune which has been the gratifying result of his labors. He owns a cosy and beautiful home in Portland, where the family remain most of the time, besides a large amount of property at Hood River and in other places. Owing to his extensive property interests in various sections, Captain Coe spends considerable time in their oversight and therefore is away from home a great deal.

On March 17, 1869, Captain Coe married Miss Kittie Catton, born in Independence, Iowa. She was the daughter of Benjamin and Ellen (Chandler) Catton, natives of New York, and from old and prominent families of the Empire State. The mother came here, via the isthmus, in 1867, her daughter and brother accompanying her. The father enlisted to fight in the Civil war and was killed in battle shortly after his enlistment. To Captain Coe and his wife, five children have been born: Katherine, wife of Lindsley Hoyt, a marine engineer at Portland, Oregon; Irma, a music teacher, living at home in Portland; Nell, a school girl in Portland; Mollie L. and Charles E., deceased. Captain Coe had one brother, Lawrence W., who died in San Francisco in 1899. He was one of the leading river men in Oregon, and with Captain R. R. Thompson built the first steamer on the upper rivers, and with Thompson, Reed and Ainsworth, organized' the Oregon Steamship and Navigation Company, which did more to assist in the settlement of the country tributary to the upper Columbia and Snake than any one other enterprise in the Inland Empire. Lawrence W. Coe was the chief owner. One brother of our subject was Charles Coe, who died in 1870. He was chief clerk in the Oregon Steamship and Navigation Company's office at The Dalles. Still another brother was Eugene F., who died at Portland in 1893. He was for many years captain with the Oregon Steamship and Navigation Company, commencing in 1861. When that company sold out to the Oregon Railroad and Navigation Company he remained in their employ for some years, then entered the employ of the government on river work.

Captain Coe is a member of the I.O.O.F., the K. of P., and the A.O.U.W. He has passed through the chairs in these orders and is popular and influential.

Politically, he is a Republican and although never anxious for personal preferment, he has been active in the conventions and is known as a man of prominence and prestige in political matters. He assisted to organize the Hood River school district. Upon his father's death, the old homestead was left to his widow and our subject and his brother, Eugene, bought it from her. He built the city of Hood River on this land and from time to time added various tracts until he has now but fourteen acres of the original farm left. Captain Coe is a man of indomitable will and determination, yet kind and genial, and possessed of that excellent judgment and oversight which have made him the successful person he is today. He is well known to every one in this portion of the country, is a familiar figure and can be seen active in the business today as in the years gone by, when he assisted so materially to build up the country. His labors have never abated and in addition to gaining the magnificent property that owns today, he has entrenched himself in the hearts and love of the people, so that he is the recipient of their admiration, good will and affection.


Submitted to the Oregon Bios. Project in January 2005 by Jeffrey L. Elmer. Submitter has no additional information about the person(s) or family mentioned above.

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