Luckey, William Nelson

From Lane Co Oregon

There are more Luckeys buried in the Masonic Cemetery than any other family. William Nelson Luckey (1808-1892) and his wife, Elizabeth Leasure Luckey (d. 1886), came over the Oregon Trail in 1850. Among their eight children were Nancy (Smith), Mary Ann, and Warren. William’s brother, Jeremiah, arrived in 1863 and two years later sent for his wife and two daughters — but they were lost when their ship, the Brother Jonathan, sank off the coast of northern California. Jerry lost another daughter, Minnie, when she drowned in a sailboat accident on the Siuslaw River near Florence in 1889. Present-day Eugeneans may recognize the family name in Luckey’s Tavern, a downtown bastion of oldstyle pool and card tables, founded by Tad Luckey in 1911 (now long out of the family). They may also know of the clock. In the early days of Eugene, Josiah “Uncle Joe” Luckey (son of William and Elizabeth) ran a jewelry shop on Willamette Street, where he kept a big, black clock out front. It remained there long after Uncle Joe passed away, and was somehow saved when urban renewal changed the face of downtown Eugene in the 1970s. It stands today on the Broadway mall, just west of Oak Street.

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