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Pioneer life of Mollie Truax Crocker

Identifier: CB C872

Scope and Contents

The Mollie Truax Crocker collection consists of a brief, typewritten autobiography that traces Crocker’s life from infancy to old age. As the oldest child of a U.S. Army soldier, Crocker moved about frequently and lived at several different army posts. At the age of 18, Crocker married David Crocker, presumably a military or federal official, who served on the Lapwai Agency. Indeed, the Crocker autobiography offers some insights into the late 19th century U.S. federal policy towards Native Americans in the Pacific Northwest. While Crocker may have been unaware of these larger national changes, her autobiography offers some details on these policies through her highlighting of life on the Nez Perce and Lapwai Reservations as well as the war with the Nez Perce.

The Crocker autobiography also discusses other events related to American settlement of the Pacific Northwest. The Truax family finally settled in Walla Walla, Washington, where they opened general merchandise stores. Crocker highlights the difficulties of childbirth and her mother’s move to Canada prior to the arrival of her second child. Crocker considered herself a “pioneer” and this biographical narrative offers her own version of the pioneer experience.


  • Creation: circa 1890


Conditions Governing Access

Collection is open to the public. Collection must be used in Special Collections and University Archives Reading Room. Collection or parts of collection may be stored offsite. Please contact Special Collections and University Archives in advance of your visit to allow for transportation time.

Conditions Governing Use

Property rights reside with Special Collections and University Archives, University of Oregon Libraries. Copyright resides with the creators of the documents or their heirs. All requests for permission to publish collection materials must be submitted to Special Collections and University Archives. The reader must also obtain permission of the copyright holder.

Biographical / Historical

Mollie Truax Crocker was born June 3, 1862, in Oregon City, Oregon. Crocker’s father was a soldier who traveled with his family throughout the Northwest to different military posts. He became a post trader at Fort Walla Walla and the Lapwai Indian Agency. Consequently, Crocker lived in Idaho, Oregon, and Washington before the family settled permanently in Walla Walla, Washington, following her father’s retirement.

In 1880, Crocker married David Benjamin Crocker and the two made their home on the Lapwai Agency where their two children were born. Eventually, Crocker and her family returned to Walla Walla.


0.25 linear feet (1 container) : 1 folder

Language of Materials



Mollie Truax Crocker was born in Oregon City, Oregon. The collection constitutes her reminiscences of her pioneer life in the Northwest from the 1860s through the 1890s.

Location note

Collection is located with other small manuscripts collections.

Existence and Location of Copies

Available in microfilm as part of: Women's lives. Series 3, American women missionaries and pioneers collection (MICROFILM BV3703 .W66 2006, reel 80); Primary Source Microfilm, 12 Lunar Dr., Woodbridge, Conn. 06525.

Processing Information

Collection processed by Richelle Ridddle and Veta Schlimgen, completed January 2006.

Guide to the Pioneer Life of Mollie Truax Crocker
Complete Description
Finding aid prepared by processing staff
Description rules
Describing Archives: A Content Standard
Language of description
Script of description
Language of description note
Finding aid written in English.
Funding for encoding this finding aid was provided through a grant awarded by the National Endowment for the Humanities.

Repository Details

Part of the University of Oregon Libraries, Special Collections and University Archives Repository

1299 University of Oregon
Eugene OR 97403-1299 USA