Isaiah Matheny (1827-1852) was a son of Rachel and Henry Matheny heretofore only suspected of existing. The censuses of Owen County, IN, in 1830 and Platte County, MO, in 1840, clearly show that Rachel and Henry had a son. The 1849 Oregon Territorial census shows two adult males in the Matheny home.
There were two different Isaiah Cooper Mathenys. Mary and Daniel Matheny’s son Isaiah Cooper Matheny (1826-1906) was the other Isaiah. They were double cousins. Both served in the Cayuse War after the Whitman Massacre. Donation Land Claim records show two different claims under the name Isaiah Matheny. An Isaiah Matheny filed a land claim across the Willamette River from Daniel and Mary Cooper Matheny. This was probably Isaiah C. Matheny, yet Isaiah C. also had a land claim just south of Amity on the Polk-Yamhill county line.
In October of 1853, Rachel Matheny, Aaron Layson, and Joseph Kirkwood petitioned the Yamhill County Circuit Court to administer Isaiah’s estate. Isaiah had not lived to patent his land claim under the Donation Land Law. Isaiah may have been the brother-in-law of Joseph Kirkwood in the California gold fields [mentioned in Into the Eye of the Setting Sun] who was engaged in conversation with a stranger who turned out to be Joseph’s father, James Kirkwood. If this was Isaiah, he directed James and his son John to the whereabouts of Joseph in Oregon.
Isaiah does not appear in the 1850 Yamhill County, Oregon census, but he was probably in the gold fields at the time. After his death, his land claim was taken up in 1852 by William Matheny, a cousin of Daniel and Henry Younger Matheny, who had just arrived in Oregon from Missouri.

For more FAMILY DONATION LAND CLAIMS, click on the link below.

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