After finishing school I worked in a dressmaking shop. Following my marriage to Mr. Fairbairn in 1890 we lived in Boise, Idaho, where John worked in a mill. Then we moved to Minnesota where he was employed as a filer. We stayed there three years.
In August 1894, we came West by train to Cosmopolis, via boat to Hoquiam. Went up to Humptulips with Harry Evans; riding in the wagon. When I couldn't stand the bumping over the puncheon any longer I got off the wagon and walked. The next day, I walked to the Lake from Humptulips, over the trail. (Subsequently I made twelve trips afoot over that trail). The following day we located on our claim next to Lawrence Slovers, who had preceded us. Our place was west of them and north of Ziegler. We proved up, holding the claim seven years before selling to Bob Durney, who re-sold to Alex Polson.
In 1897, we moved to Hoquiam where Mr. Fairbairn engaged in the real estate and insurance business. Later, he was City Treasurer.
In 1904, Mr. Fairbairn's father came on a visit to his children residing in this neighborhood. In the meantime, his daughter Ella had married Orte L. Higley, who had come to Lake Quinault in the early days with his father, A. V. Higley. Orte and Ella came out to town with A. V. Higley and Mrs. Wright's sister, canoeing down the Quinault River, then walking the beach to Oyehut where they took Capt. Benham's boat, the "Ranger" for Hoquiam. Both couples were married March 15, 1895. According to old-timers, neither couple knew that the other was to be married, each thinking the other was going along to "stand up" with them.
In 1940, the Fairbairns celebrated their golden anniversary with a family dinner. Covers were laid for Mr. Orte Higley, brother-in-law of Mr. Fairbairn; Mr. and Mrs. Howard Grandey and daughter Patricia, of Quinault; Mr. Vallan Reynolds, of Hoquiam; and Mr. and Mrs. John A. Fairbairn. Mr. and Mrs. Grandey and Mr. Reynolds are nephews and niece of the Fairbairns. Many of the Humptulips Pioneers called during the day.
In 1895, a party of twelve climbed Mt. Baldy. Neil McCarty and Wm. Weisdippi, acted as guides. Mr. and Mrs. J. A. Fairbairn were chaperones. Others who made the trip were Miss Lulu Putnam, teacher; Hilda Olson and Susie Bennett, school girls; Merriman Canning, Fred Merriman, George Melburn.
On April 13th, 1895, Mr. and Mrs. J. A. Fairbairn, Ida and Phil Locke went elk hunting. Mrs. Belle Fairbairn killed one, being the first woman in the Olympic Mountains to get one. She was a crack shot.