James William Fea was born on 24th April 1886 in the Chickasaw Nation, Indian Territory, which was later to become the state of Oklahoma. After traveling to Washington Territory in 1887 with his parents and settling in Wayside, his mother Sarah died in 1891 leaving his paternal aunt Jessie Cass (nee Fea) to care for him and his brothers. James married Eva Victoria Finlayson (b. 3rd September 1893 on a farm near Grand Forks, North Dakota). Eva was of French and Scottish descent with family in Canada. They had one son
James William Fea began working for the railroads in Wyoming and continued with them, relocating to Canada but eventually returning to the United States and moving to California. He retired to the Sacramento area, where he died on the 27th of February 1964.