It is a compliment worthily bestowed to say that Whatcom County is honored by the citizenship of John Coxson, well known farmer of Ten Mile Township, for he has achieved definite success through his own efforts and is thoroughly deserving of the proud American title of self-made man. His has been an eminently active and useful life, during which he has not allowed material affairs entirely to absorb his attention, for he has earnestly supported all measures for the betterment of his community and has set an example in right living. Mr. Coxson is a New England Yankee by birth, born in the state of Maine in 1840, and is a son of John and Katherine (Knox) Coxson, the former of whom was a carpenter by trade. The mother was born on the shore of the Bay of Fundy, at the mouth of the St. John River, a daughter of a ship builder, and her death occurred when our subject was very young. The latter was denied the privilege of a scholastic education, there having been no schools in his neighborhood, but throughout his life he has absorbed information from every possible source and is now a well-informed man upon a wide range of subjects.
At the age of ten years Mr. Coxson went to sea as a sailor boy on one of the old-time sailing vessels, and so faithful was he in the performance of duty that three years later he became an ordinary seaman and eventually an able seaman. He served in the United States navy throughout the civil war, being on the Lancaster, an "admiral ship." Later he made voyages to practically every part of the world, sailing for about fifteen years, and then went to the Argentine republic, where he worked ashore for about four years. At that time Buenos Aires, now a city of over a million population, was a town of about three thousand people. He also spent some time loading cotton on the Rio Grande river, North, in South American, which empties into the Amazon River. Mr. Coxson next went to India, where he remained about six months, and was then on the Falkland Islands and other places. Returning to the United States, he located in Michigan, where he engaged in farming and also became identified with the lumbering interests, working for a company engaged in the loading of boats. He homesteaded one hundred and sixty acres of land near the "Soo," but in August, 1888, he decided to go to the western coast.
Selling all his interests in Michigan, Mr. Coxson came west, landing at Samish, where he went to work in the Blanchard logging camp in October of that year. In the spring of 1889 he went to Bellingham and then established a boarding house at Chuckanut for C. I. Roth, which he ran for eight months. His next move was to Lummi Island, where he bought thirty-five acres of land, of which only four or five acres were cleared. He cleared practically all of this tract and devoted himself to its cultivation for twenty-three years. He sold five acres of the land on the Point to the Carlisle Packing Company, who established there the second cannery in Whatcom County. Mr. Coxson then sold the place and bought the old Tilburn farm, near Geiser [Weiser?] lake, where he remained about three years, building a good house there. He then traded that place for property in Bellingham, where he lived for about a year, at the end of which time he traded the Bellingham place for his present farm, comprising forty acres of good land in Ten Mile Township, about ten acres of which were cleared. He has cleared about ten acres more and now has a well improved and highly cultivated farm. He given his main attention to dairy farming, keeping a number of good grade cows, and raises all the hay and grain required for their feed. He is doing well and has a very comfortable home, surrounded by up-to-date conveniences and all the equipment necessary for the proper conduct of his business.
In 1884, in Michigan, Mr. Coxson was married to Miss Martha A. Bowman, a native of Ontario, Canada, and a daughter of Jacob and Mary (Hamilton) Bowman, the former a native of Pennsylvania and the latter of Canada. Mr. Coxson has done his part in the improvement and development of the country, and a number of years ago he performed good service as road supervisor. He is a lover of nature and wild animals, and while living on Lummi Island he fed six deer through one entire winter, while during all the years of his residence here he has never shot a deer or pheasant, but has fed hundreds of them. Kindly and generous, he is noted for his hospitality, and in his social relations is friendly and genial, making all feel at home who enter his door. His many find personal traits have gained for him the unbounded confidence and esteem of all who know him, for all recognize him as a man of more than ordinary strength of character.
History of Whatcom County Volume 2, Lottie Roeder Roth, pub. 1926, pgs. 904-905
Buried at Ten Mile Cemetery AKA Central
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