William N. Barrett

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William Nathan Barrett
William Nathan Barrett 1910.JPG
Barrett circa 1910
Oregon State Senator
In office
Preceded by E. W. Haines
Succeeded by W. D. Wood
Constituency Washington County
Member of the Oregon House of Representatives
In office
Constituency Washington County
8th Mayor of Hillsboro, Oregon
In office
Personal details
Born November 24, 1855
Washington County, Oregon
Died December 16, 1916(1916-12-16) (aged 61)
Hillsboro, Oregon
Resting place Hillsboro Pioneer Cemetery
Nationality American
Political party Republican
Spouse(s) Lucretia H. Parrish
Alma mater Pacific University
Occupation Attorney

William Nathan Barrett (November 24, 1855 – December 16, 1916) was an American politician and lawyer in Oregon. A native of Washington County, he served in both chambers of the Oregon Legislative Assembly, including three different times in the Oregon House. A Republican, he was also a three time mayor of Hillsboro, Oregon.

Early life[edit]

William Barrett was born in Washington County, Oregon, to Eliza Jane Barrett (née Purdin) and William R. Barrett on November 24, 1855.[1] There he attended the local public schools before attending Tualatin Academy in Forest Grove, Oregon, for his secondary education.[1] Barrett then attended the affiliated Pacific University and earned a Bachelor of Science degree in June 1879.[1]

Following college he read law at the office of attorney and politician Thomas H. Tongue in Hillsboro.[1] On November 18, 1882, he married Lucretia H. Parrish.[1] After studying law he passed the bar in October 1884 and began practicing law.[1] Barrett partnered with William D. Hare in a Hillsboro firm until 1886 when he opened his own office.[1] In 1892, he created a partnership with Loring K. Adams, lasting until 1897 when he returned to a solo practice.[1]

Political career[edit]

Barrett would serve as a deputy district attorney for Washington County and later as district attorney for Oregon’s fifth judicial district.[1] In 1880, he served as a Republican in the Oregon House of Representatives serving Washington County.[2] He returned to the House in 1891.[3]

In 1896, he was elected as the 15th different person to be mayor of Hillsboro.[4] Barrett was also the first to serve consecutive terms, holding office from December 8, 1896 until December 5, 1899.[4] He then served on the city council from 1901 to 1902.[5] After a few years away from the mayor's office, he returned as mayor and served from December 2, 1902 to December 15, 1903, when he was succeeded by Benjamin P. Cornelius.[4]

Barrett returned to state politics in 1906 and was elected to the Oregon House to represent Washington County.[6] The Republican was then elected to the Oregon State Senate in 1908 and served in the regular and special sessions of 1909.[7][8] He continued his four-year term at the 1911 secession when his district included Washington, Yamhill, Lincoln, and Tillamook counties.[9]

Later years[edit]

Barrett's headstone

In 1915, he returned to the office of mayor for Hillsboro, assuming the position on January 5 and serving until his death.[4] He was a member of the Masonic Order and of the Knights of Pythias.[1] William Nathan Barrett died on December 16, 1916, while in office, and was buried at the family’s plot in the Hillsboro Pioneer Cemetery.[10]


  1. ^ a b c d e f g h i j Colmer, Montagu, and Charles Erskine Scott Wood. History of the Bench and Bar of Oregon. Portland, Or: Historical Pub. Co, 1910. p. 85.
  2. ^ Oregon Legislative Assembly (11th) 1880 Regular Session. Oregon State Archives. Retrieved on April 25, 2008.
  3. ^ Oregon Legislative Assembly (16th) 1891 Regular Session. Oregon State Archives. Retrieved on April 25, 2008.
  4. ^ a b c d Mayors: City of Hillsboro. The Hillsboro Argus, October 19, 1976
  5. ^ "City Councilor History". City of Hillsboro. Retrieved 2009-04-18. 
  6. ^ Oregon Legislative Assembly (24th) 1907 Regular Session. Oregon State Archives. Retrieved on April 25, 2008.
  7. ^ Oregon Legislative Assembly (25th) 1909 Regular Session. Oregon State Archives. Retrieved on April 25, 2008.
  8. ^ Oregon Legislative Assembly (25th) 1909 Special Session. Oregon State Archives. Retrieved on April 25, 2008.
  9. ^ Oregon Legislative Assembly (26th) 1911 Regular Session. Oregon State Archives. Retrieved on April 25, 2008.
  10. ^ Hillsboro Pioneer Cemetery Inscriptions, Surnames A - B. Cemeteries. Retrieved on April 25, 2008.

External links[edit]