The Rock: A monument to meeker’s founders

The rock on the courthouse lawn was dedicated July 4, 1949. It was called the Official Unveiling of the Monument Honoring the Founders of Meeker. The man on the left in the picture is Mr. Ed P. Wilber, one of the few remaining original pioneers at the time of the dedication and certainly the one who had been in the community the longest. Next to him is R. A. Hafen. And on the right is Joe Neal, local history maven who probably spearheaded this project.

In the spring of 1882, Mr. Wilber had a job mule skinning. He freighted goods to the military camp on the White River for J. W. Hugus & Co., which was located at Eighth and Market Street. His first trip was in April 1882; arriving in Meeker he remembered the military band playing and the flag flying. At that time there were five companies of infantry stationed here. Wilber decided right then that he would stay in this country as long as he could make a living. Wilber was one of the organizers of the Meeker Townsite Company. He married Mary Watson on Christmas Day 1888 and she was a living pioneer at the time of the dedication also. In 1890, Wilber was made marshal for the town of Meeker. In 1893, he was elected sheriff. The next year the town was having trouble finding a marshal, so Wilber served in both capacities. He ran both offices until he moved to his ranch in 1896. Wilber had preempted land in Powell Park, which is still owned by his granddaughters.