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Penrose Library Blog

Richard Bogle and America Waldo Bogle

Among the photographs in the Walla Walla Photographs Collection in ARMINDA, the Whitman College Institutional Repository, is this image of the Bogle family of Walla Walla. Richard Bogle, born in 1835 in the West Indies, married America Waldo in Salem, Oregon in 1863. Bogle was the first black businessman in Walla Walla; he owned a well-regarded barbershop on Main Street, was successful as a rancher, and was one of the founders of the Walla Walla Building and Loan Association. He and his wife lived in Walla Walla from 1863 until their deaths, hers in 1903, his in 1904.

Pictured are the couple and their five surviving children. From left to right: at knee of Richard Bogle (seated), Waldo Bogle; standing at his left, Arthur Warren Bogle; to his immediate right, Belle Bogle; his wife, America Waldo Bogle; Katherine Bogle; Warren Richard Bogle.

Selected sources for further reading on the Bogle family, their descendants, and the diverse history of Walla Walla and the region:

Lyman, William Denison. An Illustrated History of Walla Walla County, State of Washington. San Francisco: W.H. Lever, 1901. (see especially pp. 242-245 and 345-6)

Mangun, Kimberly. “Kathryn Hall Bogle (1906-2003).” The Oregon Encyclopedia.

McLagan, Elizabeth. A Peculiar Paradise: A History of Blacks in Oregon, 1788-1940. Portland, OR: The Georgian Press, 1980.

Oliver, Egbert S. “Obed Dickerson and the ‘Negro Question’ in Salem.” Oregon Historical Quarterly 91.1 (1991): 4-40.

Thanks to Owen Crabtree for his research on the Bogles.