Like so many early island families, the Scots-Irish McCauleys arrived in the US via Ontario, Canada. They came to Lopez at the invitation of Jim Buchanan, a relative who had moved here after his claim in the California gold fields played out.
Sam and Jane Buchanan McCauley and six of their seven sons moved first to Friday Harbor. The boys, however, didn’t like it, so they moved over to Lopez, where Tom met and married Ellie McNallie.
Tom and Ellie moved on to the farm and took up residence in an existing log house. They raised a variety of crops, including hay, oats, wheat, barley, peas, pigs and cows. Some were for family and local consumption, and some were exported down-Sound on the steamer fleet.
In 1916 – 1917, Tom hired Charlie Swanson and Melvin Graham to build a handsome 80′ x 40′ barn with timbers of hand-hewn island fir and a gabled roof. In 1928, they had the new farmhouse built. McCauley descendent Bret Fowler says it was a Sears kit house put up by the Burt brothers.