Sovereigns of Themselves:
A Liberating History of Oregon and Its Coast
Volume IV
Abridged Online Edition
Compiled By M. Constance Guardino III
  And Rev. Marilyn A. Riedel
January 2013 Maracon Productions

Historians M. Constance Guardino III and Rev. Marilyn A. Riedel

I offer thanks to my friends, relatives, and ancestors whose strength of purpose
led me to my own. A special thanks to my co-author,
Rev. Marilyn A. Riedel, for her deep love and dedication to me and this project.
Without her tireless effort and selfless interest,
this liberating history of Oregon would never have been written.

Beaver Creek

 My grandfather was Cabell Adair Breckenridge Patterson. He was called "Cab" for short. He married my grandmother, Arseneon P. Turƒƒeman. Their oldest son died six months before my mother, Harriet E. Patterson Hill (1847-1931), was born.
  Cab Patterson's mother was a Quaker, Lovely Truitt. The family moved to Kentucky from nearby Philadelphia where they first settled.
 Grandpa was one of a family of six children. He was a descendent of the 13 Patterson brothers who migrated to America during the time of American colonist William Penn (1644-1718). The Pattersons were Calvinists.
 In my family, the oldest son is always named "William." Grandpa was named Cab because he wasn't the oldest son.
 There was a William Patterson at the battle of Valley Forge (1777-1778) who fought for Gen. George Washington. He was a Continental who was enlisted for the duration of the Revolutionary War.
 Lovely Patterson sent William, who was 12 years old, to Valley Forge to deliver socks, food and other provisions to the Washington's soldiers.
 Cab's son, William, moved to Kentucky, and was a private in the War of 1812.
 Grandma was an abolitionist. She begged her spouse to free their slaves, and told them to get out of slave territory, as she saw trouble was coming.
 One of the slaves became a good blacksmith. He earned enough money to purchase his wife and son and fled to Cincinnati, Ohio. The family moved to Illinois to escape slavery in the South.
 Mother’s family, the Turemans were Germans who migrated to America when John Q. Adams (1735-1826) was president. The large family settled in Illinois.
 My dad was Samuel Hill (1839-1916). He was born in Kentucky, and was the son of Nancy Watters and Philip Hill. His parents died when he was 12 years old, while the family was living in California. An uncle-in-law took all the property he could quickly sell and left my orphaned family alone. Neighbors found some wild cattle to sell, and gave dad the money.
 He started for Oregon with his pony, but ran into three cousins when he stopped to camp along the trail. They took him back to California.
 Later on, the applied for a donation land claim in Oregon, but did not prove up on his claim.
 He joined the Confederacy, and the last letter from him was sent out secretly from Vicksburg (1863). That battle, a Union victory, was the turning point of the Civil War.
 Before settling at Beaver Creek, near Seal Rock, he was hired by a woman to ferry her cattle across the river in Salem. He took land on the South Beaver side of the hill next to Harriet Patterson's claim.
 They were married after mother's brother, Corlis "Ike" Patterson, was killed at South Beach while working for the government on the jetties.
 This particular Corlis was buried on the old homestead; the others are buried at Fernridge Cemetery, Seal Rock.

Waldport

 Waldport, a small maritime community surrounded by thickly wooded hills, is located on the south shore of Alsea Bay in what was part of the Coast Reservation.
 David Ruble (1831-1907), who founded the community, was born in Monongalia County, Virginia, December 11, 1831. When he was four, his parents, Elizabeth Irons (1796-1890) and Thomas Ruble (1797-1857), migrated to Wabash County, Indiana, and lived there until the spring of 1853 when Ruble, who was a miller, crossed the plains to Oregon with his older brother, William (1822-1905).
 The brothers were married to sisters, Orlena (1834-1911) and Ruth Russell. William was among the few travelers that could provide a horse-drawn carriage for his wife. Normally the women walked the 2,000 miles to Oregon at about 15 miles per day.
 Both families took up Donation Land Claim about four miles west of Salem in the Eola Hills. In 1872, Orlena and David moved to the Alsea Valley where David erected a gristmill and later a sawmill on the North Fork of the Alsea. After a flood there, the family moved on the coast and established Waldport.
 David and Orlena had nine children. Their choice of names broke with the ordinary: Marion (1855-1935), Victoria (1857-?), Arizona (1858-1918), Orange Judd (1861-1926), Marshall W. (1862-1955), Eldorado (1865-?), Arsina (1868-?), Mary Levina (1870-?) and Martha (1872-1965).
 The Waldport area was not opened to settlement until 1875. During several years before he moved to Waldport in October 1879, Ruble freighted flour and grain down the Alsea in the flat boat he built. In all, he is said to have made 67 trips.
 Ruble donated land for a church building, making it the first Church of Christ or Christian Church on the Oregon Coast.
 Charity Arizona (1860-?), daughter of Elma Ruble (1824-1914) and Andrew Jackson Rose (1819-1892) wrote in her Memoirs,

The Rubles have, as a rule, been religious people to whom we can look back with pride. We never knew of a Ruble being intoxicated or of begging his daily bread, although but few have aspired to much wealth.

 Waldport (Port of the Woods) was so named in the 1880s at the suggestion of Paul V. Wustrow, then postmaster at Alsea, about 19 miles southwest of Philomath. Col. Wustrow was a well-known character in the Alsea Valley of European birth and up-bringing, but it is not known whether he was Russian or German. He held the position of postmaster for nearly a quarter of a century, from March 30, 1876 until May 28, 1898.
 Collins post office, on the north side of Alsea Bay, was established January 31, 1875, with Matthew Brand serving as postmaster, and the Waldport office was established June 17, 1881, with David Ruble in charge of the office.
 When Ruble became postmaster of Collins, the site moved from the north to south shore of Alsea Bay. Ruble lost the position on February 23, 1882, and the Collins post office moved back to the north shore. A few months later, on August 15, 1882, a new post office was acquired for Waldport on the south shore, with Orlena's father, Thomas Russell (1819-1894), serving as postmaster. Russell previously served as first postmaster of the Alsea office, which was established July 14, 1871. Ruble succeeded Russell as postmaster of the Waldport office on September 27, 1883.
  Early settlers in this Alsea River Basin were Germans who came for the brief goldrush then stayed to develop the timber industry. The winter of 1879-1880, Ruble and others washed $1,700 in gold dust from beach sands.
 When the townsite was platted in 1884, the streets of Old Town were laid out by the stars, without benefit of a survey. The City of Waldport was chartered in 1890.
  Alsea Bay Bridge, the longest cement-poured bridge in the world, it was torn down in 1992.
 William Pope McArthur gives Alseya on his chart accompanying the report of the US Coast Survey for 1851, and the name Alseya Settlement appears on the Surveyor General's Map of 1855. The legend stretches along Alsea River, which rises in the Coast Range and flows into Alsea Bay at Waldport, and the center of the settlement is a little to the west of the present community of Alsea. The name has many variations, but there is no doubt that it was originally pronounced with three syllables, and not with two as at present.
 Originally a stronghold of the Alsi, a Yakonan tribe that lived near the mouth of the river, the quiet beach town of Waldport also has had incarnations as a goldrush town and lumber port. A point south of town bears the name of Chief Yaquina John, one of the last members of the Alsi.
 Waldport’s history is written in a hundred years of forest products. Until the last two decades, fishing and dairying were also active. The area once had several sawmills and salmon canneries. Logging still prevails as an occupation, but no sawmills remain in the area. At one time, Waldport even started its own railroad and was accessed by train. The line was built in 1918 by the US Army to log spruce that was used to build airplanes during WWI. After the war ended, the line was acquired by the C. D. Johnson Lumber Company, which used to log an area south of town known as Camp One. When the logging was completed in 1935, the railroad was abandoned. Mid-century, Waldport was manufacturing the brightly colored cedar floats that mark the crab fishermen's nets, which resemble huge butterfly nets, with steel rings at the top and sinkers at the lower end, where bait is fastened. These nets were used near the ocean ashore and in the bays, while copper or iron crab pots were employed farther out on the banks. The Alsea Historical Society is currently working to establish a museum dedicated to the local history.
 Commercial literature about the place touts Waldport's livability, suggesting that the town's "relative obscurity" has spared it the fate of more crowded tourist towns. This may also be explained by a nondescript main drag that gives no hint of surrounding beaches and prime fishing spots. A recent influx of retirees has spurred new homebuilding, but this cozy little hamlet is decidedly low-key.

Agent Orange in Them Thar Hills 1970

 It is hard to picture the quiet beach town of Waldport as the object of national media scrutiny, but it happened twice during the 1970s and again in 1997. During the 1970s, a Sixty Minutes investigative team came here to document the link between dioxin-based defoliants used in the area timber stands to eliminate blackberries, vine maples, and other vegetation that impede the growth of Douglas fir, to an abnormally high incidence of birth defects and miscarriages. This report and the ensuing government ban on this substance in Oregon forests took on national significance when soldiers exposed to ill-effects of the same chemical (Agent Orange) in Vietnam were denied compensation by the Pentagon.

Heaven's Gate Swings Wide Open at Waldport 1975

 But this wasn't the only occasion that Waldport basked in the hot glare of a national media spotlight during the 1970s. A 1975, New York Sunday Times article described a bizarre UFO cult's recruitment of followers here to undertake a rendezvous with a spacecraft that would transport them to a higher place of existence. Walter Cronkite, John Chancellor and the like followed up with TV coverage. Their leader, Marshall Herff Applewhite, exhorted the faithful to give up their possessions and depart Oregon for Colorado where the ascension was to take place. The same Marshall Applewhite resurfaced in the spring of 1997 at Gold Beach on the South Oregon Coast, and the town, like Waldport, gained international recognition following the Heaven's Gate suicides in Southern California. Mark Miller of Newsweek reported that

in March 1997, "some followers of Heaven's Gate embarked on a bus trip to Santa Rosa, California, and to Gold Beach, Oregon, the place where cult leader Marshall Applewhite first found his calling in the wilderness. They continued on to Ashland, Oregon, and Sacramento, California, running up more than $2,000 in hotel bills."

The cult's mass suicide in Southern California prompted another media explosion with reverberations felt in Waldport. Broadcast media from Dateline NBC to Good Morning America interviewed locals here for impressions of the deceased, as a stunned and curious nation looked on.

Sinking of the Atalanta Commemorated 1998


 On November 17, 1998, people from as far away as Australia, England and Canada gathered at Tillicum State Park in South Lincoln County to commemorate the 100th anniversary of the sinking of a British clipper off the coast near Waldport. Fr. Gerald Steckler of Saint Anthony's Catholic church in Waldport blessed the stone and plaque placed in the park in memory of the 23 seamen, including the Atalanta's captain, who died November 17, 1898. The Atalanta had stopped at Tacoma, Washington, and was heading south for a run to South Africa with a cargo full of wheat, when it went aground off the coast. John McMahon, a descendant of one of the three crew members to survive the wreck, Frank McMahon, gave a brief speech. A proclamation from the mayor of Sydney, Australia, the city from which the ship had set out, was also read. Among those attending were Waldport Mayor Phyllis Boehme, Yachats mayor Arthur Roberts and his wife, Fern Roberts, and Lincoln County Commissioner Nancy Leonard, as well as Port of Alsea Manager Maggie Rivers and Doris Tai, a representative of the US Forest Service, who arranged for the plaque and memorial stone.

Beavers and Beans


Author of "Beavers and Beans:
Helen Virginia Smith Lewis Hanson (1917-2004)

 Truly this is a wonderful state, for Oregon is a virgin country, so to speak, as yet not greatly changed by the ways of men. Her farmlands are fertile and productive, her forests plentiful and abundant. Its many rivers are a potential source of water and energy, gnawing their courses through soft earth and solid rock. Beneath the surface its minerals have scarcely been tapped. Along her lower coastline stretch countless miles of rugged wilderness on which humanity has little more than glanced. In the eastern portion are her wheat fields and grazing lands, though thousands of acres lie unused, impotent and uncultivated, begging for fertility which only water can bring them. Its resources are many and varied. Beneath the bosom of her snow-capped Cascades lie the secrets of the ages that man can only presume. The lava beds of the central part are mute testimony of the eon of belching infernos which were volcanoes. The tons of massive boulders found in various regions rolled and stacked by superhuman force bear evidence of erosion and time. The fossil beds of its far eastern portion verify humanity's legend and beauty and promise, it lies, geographically old, historically new, but scarcely awakened and yet unexploited. ...

The Egg and I

 Two amateur paleontologists have discovered a 40-million-year old fossil egg, the first ever discovered in Oregon, according to William Orr, director of the state museum of fossils, the Condon collection, housed at the university.
 Jim Leary of Cottage Grove discovered the egg, slightly smaller than a hen's egg, while fossil collecting with his brother-in-law, Kevin Benson, near Vernonia west of Portland. Though the egg has a shell less than 1/32-inch thick, it remains nearly intact, with only minor deformation.
 Orr says his initial examination indicates it is probably an ancient bird egg. The prehistoric egg comes from what is known as the Keasey formation, a layer of sedimentary rock deposited during the late Eocene epoch, about 40 million years ago. Keasey rocks of volcanic ash, formed from some of the earliest debris from the infant Cascade volcanic range, were laid down in marine continental slope waters far from shore, at depths exceeding 1,500 feet.
 "But this is quite mysterious," Orr explains. "Normally we would associate an egg with coastal environs. It is puzzling to find one so far from the shoreline in deep water volcanic clay stones."
 To identify the specimen, Orr and Mike Shaffer, research assistant in the University of Oregon Department of Geology, examined the eggshell using a scanning electron microscope. They found a typical porous surface and crystalline, layered cross-section. These micro-structures usually indicate a bird egg, possibly that of a pelican.
 "Fossil eggs are very rare," Orr says. "Egg structures are inherently fragile and designed to be broken after a few weeks or months. That any egg survives for the millions of years it takes to become a fossil is truly remarkable."
 Prehistoric eggs that do survive are rarely found, Orr notes. Because they appear similar to rounded stream pebbles, fossil eggs usually go unnoticed, even by seasoned fossil collectors.
 Still, many collectors think they have found fossil eggs. Hopeful collectors have presented Orr with hundreds of "egg" fossils for identification. All previous specimens have turned out to be non-organic stones or "concretions," he says.
 Having been generally categorized, the Leary egg next will be CAT-scanned and X-rayed using the facilities at a local hospital. This will determine the extremely unlikely possibility that the shell bears an intact preserved embryo. Finally, if owner Jim Leary is willing, Orr will send the egg to get a more specific identification from a paleontologist who specializes in eggs.
 Orr and his wife, Elizabeth, co-authors of a number of books on the prehistory of Oregon and the Pacific Northwest, are just completing a new book on the fossils and paleontologists of Oregon. He expects to make this newly discovered egg a centerpiece chapter.

Bridges and Beams

 After a scant month in Salem, we got orders to move to Waldport.
 "Oh, Lew, aren't we lucky?," I asked airily, peering over his shoulder while he charted our next day’s journey via the wandering black lines of a road map spread on the table. "You job's a magic carpet that whisks us merrily over the countryside, and those tiny names printed on the map will become creeks and mountains and rivers and bays and towns. And besides that, it provides us with the ways and means."
 "For gosh sakes! Let the air out of that cloud and come on down to earth, Gin, and if you know of any place where we can trade Josephine in on a second-hand magic carpet, we'd better do it before we start," Lew stated pessimistically. "Look!"
 And his pencil came to rest on a green blob on the map indicating the mountains of the Coast Range. Then, it moved on to an inch of broken line, which, he explained, meant secondary highway and which could (and subsequently did) mean graveled road in poor condition.
 With all of Josephine's rattles and knocks and four smoothie tires, Lew continued, "We'll be mighty lucky to wish ten miles out of town without trouble."
 We packed our vases and ashtrays again and tied the paraphernalia which could not be loaded into the back seat onto Josephine's running boards. The next day we started out behind the state truck, with one of the other crewmen following behind us in his car. We had left the town five or six miles behind, when the other driver started honking loudly and gesturing in sign language. Lew, who was used to the crew’s practical jokes, only laughed and said, "They're making fun of our good looking automobile. It probably does look like a refugee from a tin can factory."
 But the honking grew louder, and the rear-view mirror showed the gestures were becoming more frantic; so Lew pulled over to the next curb and found the rear wheels were all but off—rolling two feet out in space from the fenders. We had evidently lost a simple little thing called a pin. Another half a mile and we would have been in a very embarrassing predicament—no wheels! We pulled into a nearby garage for minor repairs and continued to Waldport without further casualty.
 Waldport is a tiny seacoast town nestled close to the Pacific where the Alsea River empties into the ocean. We rented a little cabin along the dunes where we could look out and see the breakers creeping in and smell the salt air and the pungence from the small wharves where daily, fresh fish and crabs and clams were available.
 The crew was scraping and painting a bridge located ten miles south of Waldport. It spanned a small river whose ample and sandy banks made an ideal picnic site, and tourists often stopped there to swim or lunch or loaf in the white sand. The crew's foreman, who the men affectionately called "Minnie," considered himself to be Oregon's gift to the "gentler sex." It there were any women—large or small, blondes, brunettes or redheads, old or young—sited within a radius of a mile, Minnie went into his act. On the highest four inch brace of the bridge he would perch precariously on one foot, or sing a song in a loud nasal tenor, or dance a jig or whistle, which no doubt made an impression on the crew.
 One windy day, a couple of "beautiful-but-dumb" females scantily clad with scarcely enough cloth between them to flag a handcar, were trying in vain to start a fire. Minnie hurriedly grasped this golden opportunity to play “boy scout.” He hastily climbed down from his lofty perch, started whistling as jaunty as you please, and headed for the river banks below and the "pretty, pretty" girls.
 When Minnie had all but reached his destination, one of the men watching from atop the bridge yelled out, "Hey, girls, you're having such a bad time starting your fire, so I'm sending one of my boys down to help you." With that he removed his cap, threw it in the air, and caught it, bowing politely when the girls waved to thank him. Minnie, less his enthusiasm, started the fire.
 There was no variety of diversion in this tiny town. The entertainment was the one and only theater featuring tender sagas of murder-in-three-easy-lessons, and blood-and-thunder Westerns, which neither Lew nor I could endure—even as a last resort. For week-end diversion, we made exploration trips of the near-by country. We visited the lighthouses and aquariums and the small neighboring towns and drove down the coast to the Sea Lion Caves, a maternity home for sea lions. They came each year by the thousands to these caves to bear and rear their young.
 One hazy Sunday afternoon we chose to follow a dirt road on the north side of Yaquina Bay. It meandered through acres of farmland, passed farm houses and barns and fields pasturing dairy herds, and spiraled down a steep hill toward the mud flats of Alsea Bay. After following the river upstream a short ways, the road came to a dead end. We turned around and headed toward town, but we had reckoned without the mud, for the hazy sky had clobbered up and the rain came drizzling down. A wet clay road provides about as much traction for four "smoothies" as a glass one would, and we were ascending a steep hill by the ingenious process of lunging forward a foot at a time and sliding backwards two feet at a time. Though we were getting nowhere fast, we had crept half-way up the hill and were rounding a bend in the road when Josephine stalled, skidded across the road toward the embarkment, and there her left rear wheel and fender came to rest snugly against the rut.
 Lew got out to look the situation over, and I bailed out immediately with the baby. Brakes or no brakes, I wasn't taking any chances on Josephine staying put, and a little rain wouldn't dampen my spirits half as much as an unchartered flight backwards into the bay.
 Doubtless, Lew could have solved the situation by backing down the hill, but besides losing all the ground we previously gained, that could have proven as dangerous as sliding down a greased flag pole blindfolded, in view of the fact that the clay road was wet and slick and getting wetter and slicker by the minute.
 We were standing there trying to find the easiest solution to our perplexing enigma when a car chugged around the corner and came to a clattering half after nearly sideswiping us. The driver, evidently a farmer from the locality, hopped out and freely offered his advise. He must have had previous experience, for his car was equipped with chains.
 "Looks to me like you could go downhill a heap easier'n you can get started uphill," he calculated. "Might as well let 'er slide down to the bottom and take yer chance goin' across the bay on the railroad trestle—the loggin' train'll most generally back up for a feller."
 As the farmer chugged off, I looked out across the Bay at the railroad trestle stretched above the dreary mud flats and wondered uncertainly what the outcome would be if a tie or two were missing or the logging train would not back up! We gathered armloads of fir boughs and ferns and spread them in and about Josephine's old tracks. At long last, after coaxing Josephine from one rut to another, we were going uphill. Though Lew had cursed it for seven kinds of a "gutless wonder" with no more horsepower than a Shetland pony, with its four wheels once more in the center of the road, it climbed up and up and over the hill. We returned home—sadder and wiser and more than a little wet.
 After supper as I was getting the baby ready for bed, she wrinkled up her tiny nose and sneezed and sneezed. The sneezes were probably caused by lint from her fuzzy wardrobe, but at the time I was positive she was taking cold from the exposure of the afternoon. I knew so little about babies and had heard so much about babies and pneumonia, babies and congestion, babies and diphtheria or croup that her sneezes suddenly produced a grave and realistic anxiety in my mind.
 "Lew," I said, "we'd better doctor her right away." Lew went to the medicine chest and returned with a bottle of very potent nose drops.
 "If we just use a drop or two, these shouldn't hurt her," he said as he handed me the dropper.
 I administered them by hastily and forcefully squeezing the bulb least the baby should start wiggling. Janet gasped and choked and screamed with rage. Lew had filled the dropper full, and I, thinking it contained a mere one or two drops, had given her the works, nearly strangling her to death.
 "Lew! How could you!," I wailed.
 The baby would not let me comfort her, and though it was past time for her "Gin Fizz" she clung to Lew in indignation and screamed loudly if I dared take her.
 "She thinks I did it on purpose," I said sadly, "and now she'll always hate me—her own mother! It's a psychological matter!"
 The "psychological matter" was dropped after an hour or two, and she allowed me to nurse her. Everything was forgiven, and contentedly, she fell asleep in my arms. Incidentally, she didn't develop even a slight cold.

The Alsea Bay Bridge at Waldport

 The old ferries along the Coast Highway were being replaced by gigantic bridges of steel and concrete. The Alsea Bay Bridge at Waldport had opened the year before.
 We drove to Newport for the grand opening of the Yaquina Bay Bridge, and rode across the bay on the farewell voyage of the old ferry. It was a picturesque but sturdy old craft with its weather beaten cabin and its ample decks secured on all sides by protective guard rails. Once a vital link in the Coast Highway system, it had piled its course faithfully across the Bay day after day, year after year, except on those rare but tempestuous days when the stormy Pacific would fling its wild breakers far into the river's mouth. The bridge overhead shadowed its path. The green waves lapped against its sides, and the white wake trailed lazily behind until we docked on the opposite side of the Bay. Like the other old ferries, it had been outmoded and would soon fade into obscurity, for progress cannot be thwarted by sentiment.
 Here in the West a new era was beginning—an era of progress and industry and steel. The bridge presaged its coming. Built by the sweat and hands and plans of great and simple men alike, it majestically spanned the bay.

Yachats

 Yachats is south of Newport, where the Coast Range presses closer to the sea, and commercial hustle gives way to tidepools, seal lions, and whales. Known as the "Gem of the Oregon Coast," Yachats may be the perfect coast town. This tiny resort community of 600-some people nestled in the shadow of Cape Perpetua is down close to the water, nearly buried in salal and huckleberry. Yachats Bay gravels yield and abundance of agates, flowered jasper, blood stones and petrified woods Yachats is a corruption of the Alsi word, yahuts, meaning "dark waters at the foot of the mountain," which is certainly descriptive of this area where the Coast Range abuts the ocean in an unyielding tumult of relentless surf against basalt bastions. On a calm day it can be an exciting contest to witness; in stormy weather it is awesome. Consequently, this is a favorite stretch of coastline for watching winter storms.
 Other spelling and pronunciations for Yachats have included Youitts (Lewis and Clark Expedition); Youitz (Samuel Drake's Book of Indians of North America); Yawhick, and Yahauts (from various Indian Affairs reports); and Yahuts, Yahatc, Yahats, Yahach, and Yaqa' yik (from various history books). The current spelling and pronunciation (Yah-hots) is presumed to come from the German settlers.
 Many people have lived here for the past 8,000 years; the remnant was removed to Siletz Reservation and is virtually extinct. The Alsi and Yahute tribes gathered, hunted, and fished the Yachats area. Shell middens, such as the ones by Devil's Churn or the Adobe Motel, are a reminder of the bounty the natives found in the Yachats area. Middens, or piles of clam, oyster, crab, and mussel shells, formed when, after a seafood feast, diners threw sand over the shells to lessen the odor. After many shellfish meals, the middens resembled small dunes. They also caught salmon and flounder with sharp sticks. Smelt was caught in dip-nets.
 The fish and shell fish, together with venison and elk from nearby hills, were smoked or dried for the winter. Local plants were gathered and dried or ground for flour. The local vegetation also provided medicines and materials for clothing and shelters.
 The natives regularly burned the hillside to ensure good hunting, a practice that was continued when non-indians settled the area so they could have more grazing land for their livestock.
 While Indian campfires are gone now, the legacy of the Alsi will live on forever as long as people come here to gaze in wonder at sunsets and at the fury of winter storms.

Alsea Sub-Agency Established 1855

 On August 11, 1855, an unratified treaty created the Coast Range Reservation, and the Alsea sub-agency was established at Yachats. This was home to natives from many different tribes and bands from throughout Oregon and Northern California.
 Board houses, cattle sheds, a blacksmith shop, storage buildings for far tools, and fields for crops all occupied the area at Agency Creek, near the present-day Adobe Motel.
 Some of the Indians also made a trail up Yachats River and cleared land for farming.
 Ida L. Case Ingalls (1871-1960) was born at the sub-agency in 1871. The first non-indian child born in the Yachats area, she was the daughter of Mary Craigie (1848-1933) and Sam Case (1831-1904), then the current agent. Case served as agent from 1870 to February 1872, then again from March 23, 1873 to June 7, 1873. He later moved to Newport and became very involved with the development of the town and education. One of Newport's schools, Sam Case Elementary, is named after him.
 During the 20 years following the establishment of the Coast Reservation many changes took place. The reservation was divided when the center section, near Yaquina Bay, was opened to white settlement in 1866. In March 1875 the US Senate passed a bill that removed the sub-agency and granted land to all the indigenous peoples that wanted to homestead. Some chose to remain in the Yachats area, and they were "allowed" to as long as they were able to support themselves.


Alsea on the Oregon Coast 1961
Photo Courtesy of Julie Hendricks


  In 1877 US Indian Agent William Bagley wrote the following letter to the hon. E. A. Hayt, Commissioner of Indian Affairs in Washington DC:

 I desire to again respectfully call your attention to the condition of the Alsea Indians who are here, as well as those who are now at Alsea on leave of absence. We have found it impossible to feed any of them, except such as we can give employment or furnish with lumber for houses, and were left with the only alternative of allowing them leave of absence to fish in the waters of Alsea where they are acquainted with the fishing ground and can more easily obtain their subsistence than here. Besides this many of them still own their own compunitively comfortable houses at Alsea into which they can go and find shelter from the storms which for a few weeks past have been very severe.
 While I deeply regret the necessity of this course it could not be avoided unless by allowing them to suffer with hunger and cold. They should by all means be provided by government and houses, food and clothing this winter, and with some teams, seed and farming implements in the early spring so that they could during the coming year provide their own food for themselves. They do not give up their desire to remain here so as soon as they shall be assured that government is acting in good faith with them in the matter of allotment of land and assistance to cultivate the same, I respectfully ask that you will at an early day make such provisions as is possible for their maintenance and so forth. Unless this can be done it will not be possible to keep them on the reserve, except by force of arms. They could be overpowered and starved to death on the reserve but such a course would not be wise. I herewith send you a statement of the number of Alseas who have voluntarily given up their claims to the Alsea Country and desire to find homes on this reserve with the amount required to furnish them with rations during the winter. Could we obtain one half the amount they are justly entitled to and in the spring provide them such teams, tools, seen, etc., as would enable them to provide for themselves, they would be comfortable and contented. Or could they be returned to their former houses and secured in the possession of them they would provide for themselves. What can I do for them? Estimates have been sent to your office, from which I have no reply. Can you do anything to help us place the Indians of this reserve in a condition to support themselves and this soon bring them out of the slough of dispassion? Would that our government might deal justly with the Indians and thus save millions expended for the prosecuting wars against them,. As there are no treaty funds for this agency we are dependent entirely upon the general incidental fund, and hence plead earnestly to you.

 On September 13, 1879, "Boston" wrote to the editor of the Gazette:

 Some time since the citizens of Lower Alsea sent to Agent Swan, at Siletz, a numerously signed petition requesting him to visit the bay and confer with them in regard to removing straggling Indians to the agency. In response to the petition, Mr. Swan came and held a pow-wow with his dusky wards, but was careful to avoid giving a definite answer as to what he intended to do in the premises. Several of these Indians are holding valuable land claims, which they are not entitled to, as they have not, and can not comply with the law. If they were removed to the agency, where they belong, the land would be taken by white settlers, who would assist in building roads, establishing schools, and otherwise contribute to the prosperity of the country. The residents of the Alsea think that as the government has generously provided for the keeping of these Indians, they should be taken to the reservation, and we shall anxiously await agent Swan's decision.

From Ocean View to Yachats

 Formerly known as Ocean View, Yachats is located at the mouth of the Yachats, eight miles south of Waldport. Ocean View post office was established November 5, 1887, with George M. Starr first postmaster. The office was discontinued September 27, 1893, and reestablished April 27, 1904. This early office was located about a mile north of the City of Yachats, near the old reservation. Jenneta Kindred also served as postmaster, and in 1912 the Ocean View office was moved to the Hosford residence, which was near the mouth of Yachats River.
 The new post office was established October 13, 1916, with Donna Berry first postmaster. On February 18, 1917, the name of office was changed from Ocean View to Yachats at the suggestion of J. Kenneth Berry (1905-1931) because it was at the mouth of Yachats River. It was decided that since there were already too many towns on the coast with "ocean" monikers, the name really should be changed.
 Getting mail to and from Yachats was never easy, and until the road was rocked in 1931, rains made it impossible for the mail to be carried by car.


Yachats on the OregonCoast 1946
Photo Courtesy of Julie Hendricks

 The Reverend Virgil Howell Remembers Yachats

 The following account of Yachats was probably penned around 1930 by Rev. Virgil Howell (1880-1943):

 It began to be settled by the whites in... Some of the early settlers was Ingram on the present Carson place, Robert Mann (1877-1945), Austin Howell, Bill Reeves, Harmon Buoy (1838-1903).
 Ms. Buoey was the first school teacher. The writer was one of her pupils. There was plenty of game then such as bear, deer, elk. One day Will Buoy left the room and on his return let the entire school go out to see the bear go over the mountain. You know the song.
 Well, the land wasn't surveyed yet, so the settlers took what they called a squatters claim. And this meant that his family must be there continually for if they left for 24 hours the next fellow that came along could move right in and take possession. Well, this was what happened to the writer's father. He, with his cousin Milt Howell, went out to Waldport to fish for the market one year. And on his return found another man in his house. So he, with his family had to seek shelter elsewhere: there was just a horse trail up the river, so the only means of transportation was on horseback.
 The road wasn't built till in the 1890s. Well, for all the handicaps the settlers visited more as the telephone hadn't come yet. There was more harmony as the settlers exchanged work more, had things in common.
 Nearly everyone went to church. Well now we have roads and have exchanged the old log schoolhouse for more modern ones. And with the coming of the Coast Highway there is a town springing up at the mouth of the river, with two churches, the Evangelical and Free Methodist, three grocery stores, two hotels, one bakery. We are much in need of a garage, a doctor, a dentist.
 We also have a good school. The climate is fine, we have a fine bathing beach with fresh water in the river. So one can choose between the salt water and the fresh. Plenty of rocky coast for fishing.
 Mountain climbing near at hand. There is opportunity here for dairymen and chicken raisers. Berry growers as well as professional men. There is a pool hall and a large community hall.
 But the greatest sport of all is casting for the royal Chinook at the rocks right in the surf. You get a thrill you will never forget. We have rock oysters, mussels, crabs, clams, and plenty of game in the hills.
 The Yachats is growing by leaps and bounds. There is a $50,000 hotel to be under construction soon and a golf course.

 Vacationers started coming to the Yachats area in the early 1900s. While some camped near the mouth of the river, others owned summer cabins. They came down the beach from Waldport, or came over the Yachats Mountain Road.
 In 1905 a chittem bark warehouse was converted to the Yachats Motel, and the tourist industry really began. In 1920 the first cabins were built land others followed.

Little Log Church by the Sea

 The rustic building at the corner of Third and Pontiac streets in Yachats has been a part of this coastal community for generations. When R. J. Phelps came to Yachats in 1926, he organized the construction of the first real church in the area. Built in the shape of a cross, the Little Log Church was a community effort completed and dedicated in 1930. Sir Robert Perks, who owned most of Yachats at the time, donated the property. Local people cut and hauled most of the shakes, and the logs were donated. The pews, window panes, and Bible came from a church in Philomath. They were hauled over the Alsea Road and down the beach to Yachats.
 The church was served by ministers through the Evangelical United Brethren Church Missions, and later by pastors from the Presbyterian church. In 1969, when the congregation grew too large for the building, members built a new church a few blocks away, and the Little Log Church and property were sold to the Oregon Historical Society. It became a museum in 1970, and the site was deeded to the City of Yachats in 1896.
 The church underwent complete restoration in 1993, made possible by community support and volunteer laborers. Some of the original logs were saved and can be seen at the top of the church. Also saved were the bell and belfry, windows and sashes, flooring, pulpit, pews (some additional pews have been added to the west wing of the church sanctuary, chairs, wood stove, choir-rail, a painting of the three wise men, and a harmonium. The church is used for weddings and special events.
 In 1997, the 400-square-foot museum annex was built with the help of the Friends of the Little Log Church to house exhibits not connected with the original building. It sits in the "footprints" of the old church manse, later a Sunday school, which was torn down in 1976. Today, the museum houses local historical artifacts, local art and literature. Clothing and tools from pioneer days are on display at the museum along with period furnishings.
 In 1971, Alma Phelps Plunkett, who operated the Burnt Woods general store and post office for many years, recalled,

My father, Rev. Rolla J. Phelps, moved to Waldport. He didn't have any kind of religious service at Yachats at all, so he got to thinking that he really ought to have a church down there. He and his brother got busy and started cutting logs. Roland Dawson in Upper Yachats helped them, as did a lot of other people. In 1927, they built the little log church which now belongs to the Lincoln County Historical Society.

Dunk Dunkelberger: Blacksmith Extraordinar

 For many years "Dunk" Dunkelberger was a blacksmith at Yachats for several gypo logging outfits. One day a hobo entered the shop and asked for a job. Business was slack and Dunk wanted to get rid of the "bo" as quickly as possible so he told him that the job was his if he could make a three-way weld, a task that was considered impossible. Then Dunk went out to lunch chuckling to himself and expecting the tramp to be gone when he got back. The hobo was gone when he returned, but he left behind Dunk's duckbilled tongs neatly welded together about the horn of the anvil in a perfect three-way weld. It took almost tow days to saw and file the tongs from the anvil and retemper the horn.

Smelt Sands State Recreation Area

 Smelt Sands State Recreation Area is located at the north edge of Yachats, one of the few places in the world blessed with a run of oceangoing smelt that come ashore to spawn. From April to October, sea-run smelt hurl themselves up Yachats River, aiming straight towards locals with clever triangular smelt nets and oily diets.
 During the Yachats smelt fry held in July, up to 700 pounds of this silver sardine-like fish are served on the grounds of Yachats School.
 This is also the location of the well-known sculpture by local artist Jim Adler that has become a symbol of the Moon Fish arts program in Yachats.


Smelt Fishing at Yachats on the Oregon Coast
Photo Courtesy of Julie Hendricks

Spruce Pacific Railroad 1918

 Off Camp One Road north of Yachats, a "Cullen-Friestedt" Burro railroad track-laying crane sits on a small section of railroad track that was laid by an all volunteer track crew on the morning of July 1.
 These new tracks, which came from Toledo, sit on the ground where in 1918, the US Army Corps of Engineers constructed a railroad. Members of the Yaquina Pacific Railroad Historical Society, an enthusiastic group of Lincoln County rail fans interested in exploring and preserving the area’s railroad and timber history, placed the latest set of tracks.
 President Larry Reisch and treasurer Richard Cullison, both of Yachats, described the history of the railroad in the area.
 "In 1918, the Army Corps of Engineers built what they called the Spruce Pacific Railroad from Camp One north to South Beach," Cullison said. "The plan was to haul out the spruce wood they cut here and use it to build the planes for WWI. The train was the only way out. It crossed over a trestle in Waldport on the way to South Beach, since there weren't really any usable roads. But just as they got it going, the war ended, and the tracks sat idle until 1922. Then Gordon Manary bought them, turned Camp One into a logging camp, logged the spruce, took it to South Beach via the train, and floated it upriver to Toledo to C. D. Johnson's sawmill.
 "They ran the operation from 1922 to 1937, and at one time, 400 people lived here in Camp One," he continued. "They had their own school and commissary—Manary's old house is still standing. They used a big engine to haul the timber to South Beach and smaller, sidewinder engines worked the spur tracks all over these hills, bringing the logs into the main camp. There were miles of tracks everywhere. Camp One was one of 12 logging camps scattered all over the area. The 12th one was in Siletz."
 "It's fascinating to look at the connection between the railroad and the timber industry in this area," said Reisch. "Our goal as the historical society is to bring knowledge to the public of the major impact the railroad had."
 Reisch said the historical society hopes to build an interpretive center in Toledo.
 "We were taken by surprise with an awesome gesture by Bob Melob of Willamette & Pacific Railroad, who donated the railroad post office car that has been sitting next to the platform since the opening party (of the new Toledo post office) to us," he said. "He feels that with appropriate interior renovation, this car could be 'good to go,' on a variety of assignments, including public awareness of track safety issues through Operation Lifesaver."


Logging in Oregon
Photo Courtesy of Julie Hendricks

Cape Perpetua an Observation Site During World War II

 Sea-going ships passed by the Oregon coast as early as 1543 when Bartolome Ferrelo came this way. Sir Frances Drake (in 1575) and Martin de Aguilar (in 1605) also are known to have passed by. But Capt. Cook was the first non-indian to really get credit for being in the Yachats area, although he was not able to land due to the rocky shore. He named Cape Perpetua on March 7, 1787. Some day he name the 800-foot high cape after a saint whose birthday fell on that date, while other think it was because a storm and high winds kept them in the area for several days, with that particular headland in sight the whole time, perpetually.
 Al;though there were native trails interlaced through Cape Perpetua, and a crude trail cut by early homesteaders for carrying mail to and from Florence, the Yachats area was very isolated. Then in 1914 the US Forest Service blasted a narrow road around the cape and a wooden bridge was built across the Yachats River, making travel between the Yachats area and Florence easier. The wooden bridge was replaced in 1926 with a steel structure built by Montage and Sons, at a cost of $23,034.
 As part of an effort to give men jobs during the Depression, the Civilian Conservation Corps (CCC) was established here. A camp was built near the site of the current Cape Perpetua Visitor's Center and the men living there worked on many different projects throughout the area. Rockwork was one of the main skills they concentrated on; and, the rock walls around the cape, as well as the shelter built at the top of the cape were projects completed by the residents of the camp.
 During the early days of the war the shelter built by the CCCs at the top of Cape Perpetua was used as an observation site and radar station. A large gun was installed, and personnel looking for submarines and aircraft manned it.
 Foxholes and gun emplacements along the ocean drive on the hill really brought the war close to home for the locals. Military personnel outnumbered the civilians, and it was rumored the government had spent a million dollars in Yachats installations.
 The military personnel were housed in the skating rink on West Fourth and the Ladies Club was rented for recreation.
 US Navy blimps from the Tillamook Air Base patrolled the coast as well, looking for Japanese submarines.
 After the war quite a few Japanese mines floated upon the beaches. The Coast Guard pulled them out to sea and blew them up.

Florence

 Florence, on the north bank of the Siuslaw, is a fishing town and the trading point for farmers of the small Siuslaw Valley.
 The town is said to have been named for A. B. Florence, who was a member of the state Senate at the session at 1858, 1859 and 1860, representing Lane County. According to another story, the town was named for the French vessel, Florence, wrecked February 17, 1875, at the mouth of the Siuslaw.
 A more romantic and interesting version, and one more fitting the character of a charming seaport, is that the French ship Florence went aground near the mouth of the Siuslaw in February 1875 and broke up in the surf. A piece of flotsam bearing her name was washed ashore, and two beachcombing Siuslaw hung it above the entrance of the town's first hotel. Since then, the community has been known as Florence. In 1989, Betty Olivera wrote that two different stories offer the origin of the town’s name:

One suggests that the settlement was named in honor of A. B. Florence, a state senator from Lane County in the years 1858-1860. While that is probably true, it lacks the romanticism of the Siuslaw legend.

The Indian name Osceola (1804-1838)—possibly after a Seminole chief of the 1830s—passed into history.
 Like many river communities, Florence, in its early days, was dependent upon the Siuslaw for transportation and commerce. Row boats and "one-lungers," boats powered by one cylinder marine engines, were used to get around the valley. People traveled from home to home and back by boat. Errands were run, children taken to school, and parents went to churches and sociables in boats, frequently powered by the winds and the tides. Mail, food, and supplies were delivered by boat. Highways have replaced waterways for such purposes, but Florence's river heritage is still evident. Even as the town grows and spreads northward, it seems to cling to its moorings along the river's north bank. Florence was born of the river, and its first buildings were clustered along it. Several of them still stand in the riverfront area known as Old Town. After years of neglect and decay, much of Old Florence has been renovated and is now the most interesting part of the city.

The Siuslaw and Kuitsh

 The Siuslaw and Kuitsh (often called Lower Umpqua) peoples were two closely related American Indian tribes who lived along the Central Oregon Coast, around the modern cities of Reedsport and Florence. The Siuslaw lived mainly around the estuary of Siuslaw River, leaving during summer to travel upriver and into the hills of the Coast Range. Kuitsh had their winter villages around Winchester Bay, at the mouth of Umpqua River. The whole coast held by the two peoples was about 50 miles in length, from Cape Perpetua in ther north to the Tenmile Lakes in the south. In summer, both people wandered probably as far as the Willamette Valley and there is a tradition of a Siuslaw village in the Lorane Valley, southwest of Eugene. Kuitsh fishing camps were common up the Umpqua as far as the modern town of Scottsburg.
 The indigenous landscape was very diverse. The Siuslaw and Lower Umpqua rivers and estuaries were the dominating factor in the lower economy, providing fish and shellfish. Good fishing was available from a chain of freshwater lakes, including Siltcoos and Tahkenitch lakes, which lay behind a band of coastal dunes. The rivers provided a highway into the Coast Range, which lay to the east of the tribal territories. In the mountains, hunting and gathering were major summer activities. The whole landscape was heavily timbered, except along the sand dunes. An underbrush of alder and berry bushes was thick and luxurious, making travel arduous. To some extent, this also protected and isolated the Siuslawan.
 The Siuslaw and Kuitsh lived in a mild, rainy, marine climate with ample resources of fish, plants, timber, and game. They followed a seasoned round of hunting and gathering, moving each season to harvest salmon, berries, elk and deer, camas bulbs, fern roots, and shellfish. Occasionally, they hunted seals and sea lions, and any stranded whale was eagerly rendered for blubber and oil. However, they probably did not engage in open-ocean whaling or sealing.

Language

 The Siuslaw and Kuitsh spoke dialects of the same language, called Siuslawan. The language is an isolate, with some affinities to the broad language family known as Penutian. It may be related to the Coos languages to the south, and the Alsea to the north, but no definitive conclusions have been reached. it is certainly a rich and complex language, but it is now extinct, and records are very sketchy. The last Siuslawan-speaking people were the Barrett family and Billy Dick of Florence, who was interviewed in the 1950s.

Technology

 The Siuslaw and Kuitsh built large, high-powered canoes up to 20 feet long, carved out of cedar logs. They were mainly for river and bay travel, as open-ocean sailing was very risky. However, a few ocean-going canoes were imported from the Alsea and Chinook to the north, who specialized in such sturdy canoes. Lodges were semi-subterranean, up to 50 feet long, built of split and smoothed planks, with an oval entrance. The roof was gabled with a single-ridge pole. Racks along the ceiling stored dried food, baskets, tools, and personal possessions. The interiors were lined with mats. Sweat houses were often dug into hillsides. Basketry was ornate and prolific, but pottery was not practiced.
 The Siuslaw toolkit included a wide array of hunting, fishing and woodworking tools, including toggle harpoons. Hunting tools doubled as weapons of war. Bows were made of yew and vine maple, and the Siuslaw held them at a horizontal angle to shoot. Like some of the Athapascan people to the south, elk-hide armor was used.

Clothing and Decoration

 Clothing was appropriate to the season. In the warm summer it was minimal, but during rain or cold, tanned hide or plant fiber clothing was worn. Men wore belted buckskin shirts and leggings, and water repellent capes or cattail or shredded bark were used during the long rainy season. Women wore long fiber or hide dresses or skirts, and flat-topped woven basket hats. Regalia and ceremonial gear were signs of wealth, and included woodpecker-scalp headgear, dance costumes, and decorated belts and headbands. Moccasins were only used on long trips—the climate and landscape were so wet that bare feet were more practical.
 Tattooing was practiced, especially among women who marked their wrists and legs. The commonest tattoos were lines on the arms, as a ready-made calculator for measuring strings of valuable dentalia. Edward S. Curtis in 1923 photographed an elderly Tolowa man (100 miles to the south) with these distinctive tattoos. Hair was straight and black, and men often wore bushy mustaches. Men and women were quite short, averaging from 5' to 5'6" in height.
 The Siuslawan represented the southern limit of the practice of distinctive head-flattening that was common along the Columbia River to the north, and by extension along the Northern Oregon Coast. There is a tradition that they tried and failed to introduce this "prestigious" custom, which in much of the Northwest marked the aristocracy from the commoner or slave.
 The Siuslawan were a well-nourished people, probably in better health than 19th Century Europeans. Food resources were reliable and abundant, and supported a population of several thousand. Starvation was seldom a problem, although there may have been some dietary deficiencies such as Vitamin C. More likely causes of illness and mortality were injuries from hunting and fishing, and possible from warfare and interpersonal violence. The population was much more disease-free than their European and Asian contemporaries—there were only about a dozen important infectious diseases native to the Western hemisphere. Unfortunately, this also meant that any resistance to Old World pathogens had long since vanished for the Siuslaw population.

Social , Political and Religious Organization

 The Siuslaw and Kuitsh did not define themselves as a people in a political or even linguistic sense, in the way that modern nations and ethnic groups define themselves. Almost all organization was at the village level, which was based on related males, with their wives and children. Essentially, everyone outside the village was a "foreigner." However, women married outside their village, and each village had extensive relationships of marriage, trade and alliances with their neighbors. Some people probably spoke several of the nearby languages to facilitate their relationships, or used trade and sign languages. Villages combined to meet special threats like an alien slaving expedition or other regional catastrophe.
 Much of local life focused on wealth and its acquisition. Subsistence was seldom a problem, and social ranking was largely determined by personal wealth, as represented by valued possessions such as dentalia (a shell money from Vancouver Island) woodpecker scalps, abalone and olivella shells, and decorated regalia.
 Society was quite stratified, probably into four classes. The elite were defined by wealth and its attendant prestige, and below them were progressively poorer people of lesser status. At the bottom were the slaves, who were rather few in this area. It was possible to fall into slavery from gambling debts, but only the wealthiest people held slaves. The Siuslaw and Kuitsh were often themselves raided by other peoples for slaves. Each village had a chief or leader, usually a wealthy and respected man who mediated village disputes, imposed fines, and made sure that wealth was distributed to the less fortunate. Bride price was an important factor in setting one's status for life, and marriage and its financial obligations played a very important role in stabilizing and integrating the society.
 Little is known of Siuslawan religion, but it probably closely followed neighboring Coosan forms. There were shamans, probably of two types: doctors who trained intensively to cure illness through magic, and priestly shamans who elaborated various tribal rituals. Ritual purification was carried out for women after childbirth, at menarche, for anybody who had killed (in battle or in murder), or anybody who had handled a cadaver. Both types of shamans were feared for their power, and were sometimes killed.
 Dances, games and feasts were popular activities at various important times of the year, such as first elk and first salmon of the season. Winter was the season for story-telling, when the galaxy of stories from the oral literature were recited for old and new audiences. Gambling, as in all of Western Oregon, was a serious pastime, using beaver-teeth dice; and shinny (a ball game similar to hockey) was probably played.

Recent History

 Spanish and Asian ships may have contacted the Siuslawan in the 17th and 18th centuries. There is ample evidence of Chinese coins and pottery from the Northern Oregon Coast. Coos tradition recalls a visit from a Japanese junk, which returned across the Pacific with some local people as passengers. One important geological event took place on January 26, 1700. A monster earthquake calculated at 9.0 on the Richter scale tore apart the pacific Northwest coastline from Washington state southwards. The effect on the Siuslawan is unknown, but probably many villages were wrecked or inundated by tsunamis.
 In the late 18th Century, British, Russian and American traders appeared along the coast in increasing numbers, introducing iron and textiles, but also a wave of disastrous epidemics. The first smallpox appeared on the Oregon Coast in 1775, probably introduced by Spanish sailors. Another smallpox epidemic broke out in 1801, and from then on measles, whooping cough, influenza, syphilis and dysentery visited the coast in a deadly series. In 1830 a sickness now believed to be malaria carried off thousands of Western Oregon people, and the Siuslawan population may have been halved again by smallpox in 1836, although at this point a small immunity was beginning to develop. Overall, population plunged from about 3,000 to a few hundred in 30 or 40 years. The 1910 US Census reported only seven Siuslaw.
 In 1828, the Kuitsh attacked and wiped out the Jedediah Smith exploring party at the mouth of the Umpqua, leaving only three survivors. Around the same time the Siuslaw destroyed a Chinookan slaving expedition. In the 1830s, huge forest fires devastated the Coast Range landscape, disrupting the local economy and resource base. By the time the white settlers arrived in this area in the 1850s, the two peoples had been drastically reduced in number. Open warfare with non-indians never afflicted this region of the Oregon Coast, but the local tribes were shattered by the combined effects of epidemics, environmental devastation, and cultural extinction.
 The Kuitsh were deported north to a desolate reservation at Yachats in the 1850s, where they hung on in desperate conditions until 1875. The surviving Siuslaw mainly stayed in their home area, and gradually their Kuitsh cousins filtered back to the Central Oregon Coast. However, language, culture, population, and native lifeways had been terribly damaged. Most of the survivors intermarried or were otherwise submerged in the new non-indian culture. Tribal identity nevertheless remained strong. Periodically the Siuslaw and Kuitsh, in alliance with their Coos neighbors to the south, reached the United Nations, and relations with the federal government remained strained and litigious.
 In the 1950s, the tribes were "terminated," along with most of the other tribes of Western Oregon. This meant that they were no longer recognized as Indians by the government. However, this policy is now viewed as a disaster, and a trend towards recognition began in the 1970s. The Confederated Tribes of the Coos, Lower Umpqua (Kuitsh), and Siuslaw were recognized by statute in 1984, with an enrolled population of around 500.

Invasion of Siuslawan Lands 1876

 With the area thrown open for settlement, white people began arriving in 1876. Mail service commenced in 1877 with the arrival of William Moody in Florence. He used his trading center to gather and deliver mail. Florence, still nameless, received its mail addressed to "Siuslaw River, Oregon Territory." The first official Florence post office was established December 15, 1879, with Albert J. Moody first postmaster. William Kyle and his partner, Michael Meyer, established the first mercantile business in town, and the post office operated out of the store. The store still stands in its original location at the Bridgewater Restaurant. It is a fine example of early commercial architecture.
 In 1881, the Siuslaw Road Association formed a group to construct a road to Eugene, 56 miles eastward in the Willamette Valley. Completed in 1881, the corduroy road was so rough, only the stouthearted dare ride the stagecoach. It is said many fainthearted passengers were strapped to their seats to prevent them from leaping from the careening stagecoach. The trip to Eugene took two days. The dearth of passable roads in the surrounding territory forced settlers to travel by boat. Travel to neighbors, shopping, school, and social activities was accomplished by rowing a boat up or down the streams. Travelers waited for the tides to help push the boats to or from the activity. Caught on the river in darkness or fog, the boatman dropped anchor and checked the tidal swing of the boat to determine the direction home.
 The town's first mayor was B. F. Alley, a former state senator who introduced the bill to incorporate Florence, which took place officially on April 19, 1893. Now, 100 years later, Roger W. McCorckle, a teacher in government studies for the local high school and community college, begins his mayoral duties at the start of a year long "Centennial Celebration," including a special weekend event in April and closing with a time capsule internment in December.
 Florence, with a population of more than 300 in 1902, was the largest town on the Siuslaw and boasted a new telephone exchange. The building, still standing on Maple Street, housed the switchboard on the first floor, with quarters for the operators on the second floor. An electrical generating plant went into operation in 1912. The railroad reached Cushman about four miles upriver, in 1914.

Chinese Laborers Support Florence's Salmon Industry 1800s

 Florence was the hub of the central coast fishing and lumber industry. The salmon canning industry, a $100,000 a year industry in the late 1800s, employed great numbers of Chinese laborers. They cleaned and cut the fish, cut the metal and formed the cans, soldered the lids shut on the filled and steaming cans. Most Chinese laborers lived in their own community.


Chinese Miners in Oregon

 Clamming and crabbing are favorite pastimes in both the ocean and river. Along the mud flats of the Siuslaw is some of the best clamming to be found anywhere. Docks and jetties provide the perfect spots for catching Dungeness crab.
 On December 22, 1888, Capt. W. W. Young made a preliminary examination of the Siuslaw according to the river and harbor act of August 11, 1888, stating that the river and harbor were worthy of improvement. The timber is "so extensive that even at $1 per thousand feet the saving would amount to a sum greater than the cost of improving the entrance."

Heceta Head Lighthouse Illuminated 1894

 Continued recognition of the Siuslaw was given by the introduction of bills by Senator Mitchell and Congressman Hermann to provide $80,000 for the construction of Heceta Head Lighthouse, located about 12 miles north of Florence on the west side of the 1000-foot-high Heceta Head (44° 08' 15"), 205 feet above the ocean. The light at the top of its 56-foot tower was illuminated in 1894. Now, its automated beacon can be seen 21 miles from land and is rated as the strongest light on the Oregon Coast.
 In the fall of 1889, Hermann visited Eugene and promised to exert his influence towards obtaining a livesaving station at the mouth of the Siuslaw and the establishment of regular mail service between Eugene and Florence.
 Finally, on May 31, 1890, a dispatch from Hermann stated that Congress had appropriated $50,000 for beginning a jetty at the mouth of the river. Eleven months later the representative announced that the Siuslaw project was being prepared by the chief engineers.
 Great indignation was aroused in Eugene in June 1891, when the engineers' report stated that the Siuslaw was not worthy of improvement at the time. Eugene citizens sent protests to Washington. In August, representative Hermann announced that the engineer had overestimated the cost. Shortly afterwards the work was ordered to commerce. This so thrilled George Melvin Miller, brother of the poet Joaquin Miller, that he rode to Florence on horseback to deliver the good news before the mail could bring it, and was eventually instrumental in the development of the town.


Heceta Head Lighthouse on the Oregon Coast

Cincinnatus Hiner Miller

 Cincinnatus Hiner Miller (1837-1913) was born in Union County, Indiana, November 10, 1842. His parents moved to Missouri in 1848, and to Oregon in 1852. The poet tells the story:
 "The first thing of mine in print was the valedictory class poem, at Columbia College, Eugene, 1859. At this date, Columbia College, the germ of University of Oregon, had many students from Oregon and California, and was famous as an educational center. I had been writing Oregon trying to write, since a lad. My two brothers and my sister were at my side, our home with our parents, and we lived entirely to ourselves. We were all school teachers when not in college. In 1861, my elder brother and I were admitted to practice law under Geo.rge H. Williams, afterwards attorney-general under Pres. Ulysses S. Grant (1822-1885)."
 As a lawyer, Miller became deeply interested in Joaquín Murietta, a Mexican outlaw for whom he made a legal defense. Later he "poetized" his client, taking his name.
 The nom-de-plume became popular; and at the present time the poet is best known to literature under the name of "Joaquín Miller."
 In 1862, he edited the Democratic Register in Eugene, which was later suppressed for disloyalty.   While editor, he married Minnie Dyer, of Port Orford, who, in the 1870s, became famous for her early Victorian writing style in Oregon literary circles, using the pen name "Minnie Myrtle Miller." She produced a marked change in the character and writings of her husband. That delicate and refined love of the beautiful and that sympathy for the erring and unfortunate which characterized his writings must be admitted to date from his marriage. The poet said: "That which is best in my works was inspired by her."
 Miller moved to Canyon City, in Eastern Oregon, where he wrote poetry, served as county judge and practiced law. In 1868, he published "Specimens," and in 1869, "Joaquín-Et Al." Believing that he could find a better market for his publications in Europe than in American, he went to London in 1870. Soon "The Songs of the Sierras," written before he left Oregon, appeared in England and in Boston simultaneously.
 Included in Miller's Songs of the Sierras was "Kit Carson's Ride." Carson, who also appears in Willa Cather's (1873-1947) novel Death Comes to the Archbishop, was an American folklore hero. Kit Carson was the popular name of Christopher Huston (1809-1869), a frontiersman and guide who appears as a hero in many legends. One of Carson's contemporaries said "Kit Carson's word was as sure as the sun comin' up" and "Kit never cussed more'n was necessary," making Carson a perfect subject for legend.
 Miller's originality, freshness of style, vigor of thought and expression were greeted with applause; and Englishmen hailed him as the "American Byron." Upon returning to America he did journalistic work in Washington DC, until the fall of 1887, when he removed to Oakland, California, where he remained until his death, February 17, 1913.

 In the meantime, feeling was so intense against the engineer that the citizens of Florence had him hung in effigy. Miller's arrival directed their resentment to enthusiasm, but the remnants of the stuffed image swayed in the breeze.
 Lumbering thrived in the coastal community. This was due to the extensive forests of tall pine trees surrounding the town. The cut timber was shipped by barge to San Francisco. The growing influx of settlers also placed a heavy demand on the lumber mills for timber for homes.
 In 1913, a bill backed by a local lumber company was introduced in the state legislature to form Siuslaw County. In 1975, after dissatisfaction with Lane County officials' responsiveness to Florence citizens, "McCall County"—honoring the highly regarded former governor—was put in motion by strong-willed community leaders, the local newspaper and timber industry. While this latter effort also fell short of establishing a new coastal county, West Lane area residents continue to remind the county seat that there is life west of Veneta.
 The Siuslaw National Forest is located in the Coast Range of Oregon. Its 630, acres extends from Tillamook to Coos Bay. Its terrain ranges from dense Douglas fir stands, complemented with lush, green vegetation, and miles of sand dunes. This forest is just one of two in the continental US whose borders include the Pacific Ocean. The Los Padres National Forest in California is the only other national forest that can make this claim. The highest point in the forest is Marys Peak with an elevation of 4,097 feet. Dense forests, combined with controlled timber harvest, provide habitat for a variety of big game, including blacktail and Roosevelt deer. Coastal scenic attractions within Siuslaw National Forest include Cascade Head Scenic and Research Area, Cape Perpetua, and the Oregon Dunes National Recreational Area. The forest contains three designated wildlife areas totaling 22,600 acres. They are Cummins Creek, Driftwood Creek, and Rock Creek.

Oregon Sand Dunes Formed 60 Million Years Ago

 The dense forests and seaside basalt cliffs stop short at the mouth of the Siuslaw, where they're replaced by giant sand dunes all the way south to Coos Bay. The dunes, claimed to be the highest in North America, started to form more than 60 million years ago. Volcanic basalt cliffs never formed a barrier here, and the ocean bottom sand was free to blow inland, forming huge shifting hills, to heights of 500 feet or more. The dunes are vast; they stretch 41 miles southward along the coast, and in some places, they reach a couple of miles inland. European beach grass, introduced around 1900 to hold sand down and prevent it from blocking river channels, is forming a mat over the sand, and the dunes no longer blow and shift as they once did. Once the dunes are held firmly in place, other vegetation can take hold, and the unpredictable blowsy wild cards of the landscape will be replaced by more permanent features.
 Famous for the abundance of rhododendrons growing in the area, Florence is designated the City of Rhododendrons and has since 1908 held the annual Rhododendron Festival each May. South of Florence, the wild azalea replaces the rhododendrons on the hills. This brightly flowered shrub thrives best in open spaces, and reaches the height on its beauty and fragrance in May and June.

Vine Maple Savages

 An historical account of Florence would not be complete without mentioning the notorious Vine Maple Savages with a mailing address of "1/2 Mile Back in the Brush, Florence." Though unknown by names and seldom seen, they have moss in place of hair, wear tin pants and only come out of the woods when it is apparent that citizens are unable to defend themselves against the bureaucracy of government. Once the group was reported to be standing guard, muskets ready, looking for Bonneville Power agents disguised as fish swimming up the Siuslaw. In another incident when local residents struggled with the National Parks Service over maintaining Forest Service management of the Oregon Dunes National Recreation Area, the Savages, not surprisingly, were reported to have led a Park Service dignitary away with a noose around his neck during the annual Rhododendron Festival parade. Some say his boots are still visible out there in the ever-blowing sand dunes.

Gem Along The Central Oregon Coast

 The City of Florence, situated on the Siuslaw River amidst a chain of beautiful freshwater lakes, rests almost exactly halfway along the Oregon Pacific shore, and is fortunate to possess all of the many gems the shore’s 400-mile stretch features including wide beaches, rocky inlets, scenic rivers, fir-clad mountains, and quaint harbors. As inhabitants boasted in 1891, Florence is "a diamond set among the pearls" of the Siuslaw Valley.
 Today, the City of Rhododendrons serves a population of 19,000. To some it is a retirement community. Almost 50 percent of the residents are retired, contributing of their time and talents to the betterment of the community.
 The business community will tell you Florence is a tourist town, citing the fishing, the tourist accommodations, the Old Town with its art galleries, book shops and souvenir shops. They will boast of the sand dunes or extol the lumbering industry.
 The mild climate, outstanding sport fishing opportunities, vast forests, clean lakes, high sand dunes and inspiring scenery will bring you back again and again to this gem along the Central Oregon Coast.

Chapter 22: South Oregon Coast

 The Spanish navigator, Bartolome Ferrelo, is said to have reached the mouth of the Umpqua in 1543 and some romanticists like to believe, English admiral Sir Francis Drake sailed the Golden Hynde into the river and there set ashore in the wilderness his Spanish pilot, Morera. This however, probably took place farther south. Spanish archives record that in 1832 a ship disabled by severe weather entered the Umpqua, and ascended it as far as the site of Scottsburg, where repairs were made. Many trees were cut down and, the decayed stumps were seen by the first white settlers, who were told by the Indians about the vessel that had arrived there many years before, manned by white men with beards.

Valley of the Green Giant

 At the far end of Douglas County in the Cascade Mountains, the North Umpqua River rises and flows westward, gathering the waters of two dozen rivers and creeks before joining the South Umpqua near Roseburg. From there the mighty river courses north and west through the Coast Range, creating what might be called the Valley of the Green Giant, because that's exactly what the Umpqua is by the time its slate-green waters pass beneath the State Route bridge at Scottsburg, he head of tidewater.
 Flanked by emerald mountains, the great river parallels State Route 38 for another 16 miles and is joined by the Smith River before passing beneath the US-101 bridge at Reedsport, in the heart of the Oregon Dunes National Recreation Area.
 Reedsport is located on the south shore of Winchester Bay, three miles south of Gardiner. It was named in honor of Alfred W. Reed, a pioneer resident of the western part of Douglas County, and evolved because of the site’s proximity to the Umpqua River. The name was first applied about 1900 when the townsite was platted. The post office was established July 17, 1912, with Joseph Lyons the first postmaster.
 The vast dunes of the Oregon Dunes National Recreation Area stretch for 40 miles from the mouth of the Siuslaw south to Coos Bay.
 Birds and animals abound in this land of buried forests, rare plants and insects, freshwater lakes and mountains of shifting sand. At the Dean Creek Elk Viewing Area, three miles east of Reedsport, shaggy Roosevelt elk graze in this 1,040 acre preserve. Sections of the preserve have been improved to provide better habitat for waterfowl and wildlife. In addition to the herd of 60 to 100 elk, nutria, black tailed deer, ospreys, mallard and wood ducks, great blue herons and western bluebirds flourish.
 Beyond, the bridge at Reedsport rounds the big bend just past Gardiner, swings southward, and becomes Winchester Bay. Having traversed the breadth of Douglas County and wended its way through the canyons, gorges, and benchlands of two mountain ranges, the Umpqua has become the largest coastal river between the Columbia and San Francisco Bay.
 Once an important transportation and commerce corridor, the Umpqua moved passengers and freight, via riverboat, between the coast and Scottsburg. The Willamette Valley was connected to Scottsburg by roads traveled by stagecoach and wagon. Sawmills in the area sent their lumber on schooners and streamers south to the burgeoning boomtown on the Bay, San Francisco.

Smith River

 Jedediah Strong Smith (1799-1831), for whom Smith River is named, explored this country in the 1820s after the Hudson's Bay Company's Peter Skene Ogden (1794-1854) theorized that the Umpqua River might be the fabled Northwest Passage.
 Smith, a western fur trader and explorer, was born in Jericho (now Bainbridge), New York, June 24, 1799, and was killed by Comanche Indians in the summer of 1831 while on the way from Saint Louis to Santa Fe. When he was 13 years old Smith obtained a position on a freight boat on the Great Lakes, and when he was about 18 he was in Saint Louis, attracted to the fur trade. In 1826, Smith started from Saint Louis with fur trader and explorer William Henry Ashley (1778-1838) on the first stage of what was to be the first journey of a non-colored man from the Mississippi to the Pacific Ocean over the midland route. He traveled to Southern California by way of Great Salt Lake, then returned to Utah and in 1828 started for Northern California and Southern Oregon. His party made its way up the Pacific Coast, and reached the Umpqua, which was crossed very close to the mouth early on July 12, 1828. The party then made its way up the west and the north side of the river until the evening of July 13, where camp was pitched on the north bank just west of the mouth of what is now Smith River. Gordon's land office survey of 1857 gives the location as about a quarter of a mile west of the east line of S 26, T 21S, R 12W, or about the same distance southwest of what is now East Gardiner or Gardiner Junction on the Southern Pacific railroad. On the morning of Monday, July 14, Indians attacked the party, while Smith and two companions were away from camp. He made his way north to Tillamook, then to Fort Vancouver. Smith and his two companions escaped toward Willamette Valley. Fifteen men were killed.380 McLoughlin sent an expedition to secure the pelts, which he then bought from Smith for $20,000 with the understanding that the Yankee should thenceforth stay out of Oregon. Smith eventually returned to Saint Louis and continued in the fur trade until his death. He was a devout Christian, and a reliable geographer, and entitled to great credit for his explorations.
 Although he didn't find the Northwest Passage, Smith's explorations were exceeded in importance only by those of Lewis and Clark, and the Umpqua is still one of the great fishing streams in the state. Zane Grey (1875-1939) avoided writing about it, lavishing the publicity instead upon the Rogue to divert people from his favorite steelhead spots. At any rate, Winchester Bay's Salmon Harbor marina has given the whole area new life in recent years, following hard times precipitated by the decline in timber revenues. Salmon Harbor sits at the mouth of the Umpqua, one of the largest rivers between San Francisco Bay and the Columbia.

Winchester Bay

 Winchester Bay, a town on the Umpqua River near its mouth, is located on the south shore of the bay, about four miles southwest of Reedsport. Named for Herman Winchester of the 1850 expedition from San Francisco, which explored the Umpqua Valley, it was first a trading point called West Umpqua.
 West Umpqua was the name selected for the community planned for the other side of the Umpqua. There was some development at both Umpqua and West Umpqua, but the towns had petered out by 1867.
 Winchester Bay is now primarily a summer resort and fishing village by the Umpqua River, about three miles from its mouth.
 The expedition founded this community, and for the first few years it was the seat of Douglas County government. In 1854, the county seat was lost to Deer Creek (Roseburg), and with it went most of the population and businesses of Winchester.
 The territorial post office was moved north to Wilbur, which is located on Cooper Creek, six miles north of Roseburg, and near Sutherlin. It is the home of the Umpqua Academy (later Wilbur Academy), established in 1854 by James H. Wilbur (1811-1887), DD, a pioneer Methodist clergyman; it was closed in 1900. The first building was a rough log structure with a few rough pine desks. Like other Oregon pioneer places of learning, the rules of the academy prohibited:

Profane, obscene or vulgar language or unchaste yarns or narratives, or immoral gestures or hints; any degree of tippling anywhere; any sort of night reveling.

The pupils for the academy came

from Southern Oregon, from about Jacksonville, Leland, Canyonville, Cow Creek, Lookingglass and from the northerly parts of the county, from Yoncalla, Elk Creek, and Green Valley and the classic precincts of Duck Egg, Tin Pot and Shoestring.

 The community inherited the post office, established December 14, 1860, from the pioneer Winchester settlement, after the latter lost its bid to become county seat in a contest with Roseburg. Curtis P. Stratton was first postmaster of the Wilbur office, which was discontinued November 17, 1865, and reestablished May 16, 1870.
 It would be 30 years before a new office was established at Winchester, on October 10, 1890. Winchester post office, established November 3, 1851, was located on the south bank of the North Umpqua, four miles north of Roseburg. Addison R. Flint was the first postmaster of this early office.
 Winchester Bay post office was established February 21, 1916 with Louis A. Weeks serving as first postmaster. It was designated a rural station of Reedsport on May 31, 1959.
 Winchester Creek flows into Winchester Bay, which is home to the largest recreational salmon port on the Oregon Coast. Known as Salmon Harbor, the port is located at the mouth of Umpqua River, 77 miles west of Roseburg.
 Built in 1924, Booth Bridge connects the banks of North Umpqua on the old Pacific Highway at Winchester. The bridge is 884 feet long and consists of seven 112-foot reinforced concrete spans and five concrete approach spans. Curved decorative bracketing, observation balconies, and a band of dentilis (concrete block moldings under the cornice) add to architectural interest of this historical bridge.

Gardiner

  Gardiner is on the north bank of the Umpqua near its mouth. It is an historic community of Oregon, and bears the name of Boston merchant Gardiner Chism who sought to trade on the river. His vessel, Bostonian, was wrecked at the mouth of the Umpqua on October 1, 1850. Most of the goods on the vessel were saved and moved to the location of what was subsequently the town of Gardiner. The place became headquarters of the Umpqua Customs District in 1851, with Colin Wilson a collector. The post office of Gardiners City was established on June 30, 1851, with George L. Snelling first postmaster.
 The current Gardiner post office, established August 1, 1864, is located on the northeast bank of Umpqua River, opposite Cannery Island, and three miles north of Reedsport. The form Gardiner City was used on October 20, 1853, which was the date that Harrison Spicer became postmaster.

Fort Umpqua

 Umpqua is an historic name in Oregon. It was used by the Indians to refer to the locality of the Umpqua River and came to be applied to Umpqua River.


Cow Creek Band of Umpqua
Photographs Courtesy of Julie Hendricks

 The Hudson's Bay Company sent expeditions to the river in the century, and in 1828 the trapper and explorer, J. S. Smith, followed the river with a party of 19 fur trappers that were almost annihilated by the Indians, three men only escaping. The company had a trading post in the Umpqua Valley as early as 1832, probably on Calapooya Creek, which rises on the south slopes of Calapooya Mountains in Douglas County and flows through Oakland and joins the Umpqua river at Umpqua. It was generally called Old Fort Umpqua, a post at Umpqua City from 1856 to 1862.
 There have been several places known as Fort Umpqua. John Work visited Umpqua River in 1834 and Fort Umpqua, which was later established by the Hudson's Bay Company near the present site of Elkton, did not then exist. Just north of the mouth of the Umpqua is the site of Fort Umpqua, established July 28, 1856 by Cpt. Joseph Stewart, 3rd US Artillery, on a site selected by Cpt. John F. Reynolds, 3rd US Artillery, at the close of the Rogue River Indian War.
 Not to be confused with Hudson's Bay Company forts of the same name, the post was one of three forts set up to watch over the Indians at Grand Ronde and Siletz agencies. The other two were Fort Yamhill and Fort Hoskins. A letter in the Bancroft Library, University of California, dated Umpqua City, March 20, 1862, with a signature that seems to be J. V. Cately, says that the post was built to accommodate two companies of soldiers, but on that date had but one lieutenant and 22 men.
 The original buildings of the post consisted of structures from the abandoned Fort Orford. In the summer of 1862, the paymaster, Col. Justus Steinberger, 1st Washington Infantry, commanding the district of Oregon, arrived and found found all the officers, commissioned and non-commissioned, stationed at the fort out on a hunting trip. His report of this incident, and the fact that there were no Indians here caused the fort to be abandoned on July 16, 1862.
 An effort was made to reestablish it, and Capt. J. B. Leeds was on the point of leaving San Francisco with troops when the order was countermanded. The old blockhouse and soldiers' quarters was moved to Gardiner.

Umpqua City

 In the summer of 1850 a party of prospectors, originally planning to visit Klamath River, explored the Umpqua and established Umpqua City on August 5, 1850. The town was located about two miles north of the mouth of the Umpqua, on the west bank, not far from what is now known as Army Hill, which is little more than an elevation of sand.
 West Umpqua was the name selected for the community planned for the other side of the river. There was some development at both places, but the towns had petered out by 1867.
 Umpqua City post office was established on September 26, 1851, with Amos E. Rogers postmaster. Samuel S. Mann became postmaster on February 24, 1852. This office may have been on the east side of the river when first established but in 1860 the post office and community of Umpqua City were on the west side of the river about two miles north of the mouth. Fort Umpqua was then at the same place. The present Umpqua post office is on Umpqua River near the mouth of Calapooya Creek and a long way from the places mentioned above.
 Umpqua post office was initially located on the east bank of the Umpqua near its mouth, but when in 1856 a military reservation, Fort Umpqua, was built on the west bank, the post office moved across the stream. The post office was established September 24, 1851 and discontinued March 19, 1869. A. E. Rogers was the first postmaster.
 Umpqua Ferry was the site of an early ferry crossing, about seven miles west of Sutherlin. The Umpqua Ferry was replaced by a bridge completed in August 1890, but old names change slowly sometimes, and it was 1906 before the name of the local post office was modified. The post office now known as Umpqua was initially located in the George Shambrook homestead. Shambrook operated a general store and the ferry, and his son, John C. Shambrook, was the first postmaster here. Umpqua Ferry post office was established March 16, 1877 and discontinued October 4, 1906, at which time the Umpqua post office post office was established. Henry F. Hebard was the first postmaster.
 The territorial legislature created an Umpqua County January 24, 1851. It ceased to exist October 16, 1862, its area having been added to other counties.

Lakeside

 Lakeside is a small community situated near the northwest shores of Tenmile and North Tenmile lakes, seven miles south of Winchester Bay and 12 miles north of North Bend. It is along Tenmile Creek, which empties into the Pacific Ocean about ten miles south of Winchester Bay, at the mouth of the Umpqua. The creek, which is also about ten miles north of the northern bend of Coos Bay, is steeped in Oregon history. On May 5, 1864, Lt. Royal A. Bensell wrote in his Journal:

At Tenmile Creek (waist deep) the Indians wade. Miss Kitty and several of her stripe affected extreme modesty. I told them "hyac [hurry]" up and they pulled their flounces displaying "conaway squitch" to the great amusement of the guard. Some very fair legs got a good washing, a thing much needed.

 The town, once a thriving resort, was incorporated in 1974, and had a population of about 1,615 in 1994. The post office was established April 18, 1908, with Nels O. Olson serving as first postmaster.
 Lakeside still possesses a resort atmosphere, but the pace has slowed considerably. With the closing of its only remaining sawmill, however, outdoor recreation will likely become the area's economic mainstay.
 Tenmile Lake was formerly known as Johnson Lake, and North Tenmile Lake is also known as North Lake. The latter’s outlet is into Tenmile Lake, which in turn drains into the ocean through Tenmile Creek.
 Tenmile and North Tenmile lakes are typical lakes found in hill country. They are sprawling bodies of water with many arms, bays, and coves. The two, joined by a canal at their western ends, offer 42 miles of shoreline to explore by boat. The lakes are among the most popular on th coast for swimming, waterskiing, sailing and fishing.
 Tenmile Butte, southeast of Tenmile Lake, was also named for Tenmile Creek.
 About halfway between Winston and Camas Valley, there is a Tenmile post office, but it derived its name from the fact that an early settler who lived in Happy Valley drove cattle from the valley and grazed them at the community now known as Tenmile. The distance was about ten miles, hence the name. William Irwin was first postmaster of this pioneer office, which was established June 13, 1870 as Ten Mile. The style was changed to Tenmile on October 4, 1918.
 Just north of Lakeside and east of US-101 lies Eel Lake. Though smaller than either of the other two, this is still among the largest lakes on the coast.

Oregon's Bay Area

 The towns around the harbor of Coos Bay refer to themselves collectively as the "Bay Area." In contrast to its namesake in California, the Oregon version is not exactly the Athens of Oregon. Because much of this natural beauty is on the periphery of the industrialized core of the Bay Area, it is easy to miss.
 North Bend is located at the north end of a peninsula around which Coos Bay bends on its way to the Pacific. The community has several sawmills, including the Weyerhaeuser Timber Company plant on a 40-acre site, a larger plywood plant, a shipyard, and several fisheries and packing plants. A large fishing fleet operates from the local docks.


Marshfield and North Bend on the Oregon Coast 1910

 Called Yallow by settlers in 1853, it is said that the name North Bend was originally applied in 1856 by Capt. Asa M. Simpson, the founder of the city, and his son, Louis J. Simpson, the founder of Shore Acres.
 Shore Acres is located 12 miles southwest of Coos Bay on a 75-foot promontory. It was the former estate of L. J. Simpson, which began as a summer home and grew into a three-story mansion complete with an indoor heated swimming pool and large ballroom.
 Originally a Christmas present to his wife, Shore Acres became the showplace of the Oregon Coast, with formal and Japanese gardens eventually added to the 743-acre estate.
 After a 1921 fire, a second, smaller incarnation of Simpson's "shack by the beach" was built. This was acquired by the State of Oregon in 1942 after it fell into disrepair. Because of the cost of upkeep, the latter had to be razed, but the gardens have been maintained.
 The international botanical bounty culled by Simpson clipper ships and schooners is still in its glory, complemented by award-winning roses, rhododendrons, and azaleas.
 North Bend post office was established February 27, 1872, with C. H. Merchant first postmaster. The office was discontinued March 20, 1874. When it was re-established November 13, 1900, records indicate the name "North Branch" was originally used, but this was changed to "North Bend" on December 5. The entry is believed to be an error in the records.
 A city of about 9,840 in 1994, North Bend was replatted as a town in 1902, and incorporated in 1903.
 North Bend Station No. 1 was established July 1, 1963, and discontinued September 22, 1978 when the name was changed to Pony Village Contract Station of North Bend. The office is located at Pony Village Mall, some two miles west of the heart of North Bend.

Empire

 Formerly known as Empire City, the town of Empire is a suburban area four miles northwest of the heart of the City of Coos Bay and near North Bend. Its first settlers were men from Jacksonville, called the Coos Bay Company and headed by Perry B. Marple, who left the place during the height of the local gold fever. Discovery of gold in Northern California and Southwestern Oregon led to the formation of the project, and stock in the company was offered for sale in the Oregonian, January 7, 1854.
 Empire City was at one time the county seat of Coos County. A custom house was established there in 1853 for the southern collection district in Oregon, with David Bushing serving as port collector.
 Established April 30, 1858, Empire City was the first post office in the Coos Bay region, with John J. Jackson serving as first postmaster. It was named with the expectation that this community would become the heart of a vast region, rich in natural resources and focused on an excellent port. It was located on the east side of Coos Bay, four miles northwest of the heart of the City of Coos Bay.
 The town soon had a lumber mill and did considerable shipping, particularly a low grade coal that was for a time mined south of Marshfield. Local trade declined as North Bend grew in prominence, though Empire residents were slow to accept their fate.
 Empire City post office operated with that name until October 20, 1894, when the title was changed to Empire. Chauncey M. Byler first postmaster of the new office. The pioneer dream of being the hub of a vast empire had faded by this time, and the deletion of "City" from the settlement's name was prudent.
 One mill, however, was kept in good condition; during many years of idleness the machinery was greased at intervals and turned over, and resumed operations during WWI. Over the years other industries established themselves there, until the town achieved a position of prominence in the industrial and commercial life of the Bay Area. Fish canneries and a pulp mill also provided local employment. Many new homes were built after WWI, and Empire had one of the area's most attractive schools.
 On January 8, 1965, the city voted to consolidate with Coos Bay, and the name Empire, in use for over a century, like Marshfield, became a thing of the past.

Cape Arago

 Cape Arago is the western point of a large headland just south of the mouth of Coos Bay.


Cape Arago Lighthouse on the Oregon Coast
Photo Courtesy of Julie Hendricks

Coos Head, the point on the south side of the entrance to Coos Bay, extends northward from Cape Arago, but is much lower than the main part of the cape.

Cpt. James Cook sighted it on March 12, 1778, and named it Cape Gregory for the saint of that day. although that name did not stick, it is perpetuated by Gregory Point.
 Since 1850, this cape has been called Cape Arago, and is officially so known by the USBGN. Dominique Francois Jean Arago (1786-1853) was a great French physicist and geographer. He was the intimate of Alexander von Humboldt (1769-1859), and his friendship with Humboldt "lasted over forty years without a single cloud ever having troubled it."
 The name Cape Arago first appeared on the USC & GS chart prepared by W. P. McArthur in 1850, and issued the following year. It seems apparent that McArthur applied the name Arago as the result of the naming of Humboldt Bay, California, which took place about the same time. Humbolt Bay was named in 1850 during the visit of a company of miners styled the Laura Virginia company or association. A. J. Bledsoe, in Indian Wars of the Northwest, gives an account of the exploration of the Laura Virginia expedition in the ship Laura Virginia, and he says that Humboldt Bay was named at the solicitation of a member of the party who was an admirer of the great scientist. Elsewhere it is reported that the name was selected by Lt. Douglass Ottinger, captain of the Laura Virginia, but this does not agree with Bledsoe.
 McArthur visited Humboldt Bay and mapped it in 1850 and a few weeks later charted Port Orford which he named Ewing Harbor for his Coast Survey schooner, Ewing. He charted the vicinity of Cape Arago shortly after leaving Ewing Harbor. It seems obvious that the well-known friendship between Arago and Humboldt suggested the name for the cape.
 Between Coos Head and the west point of Cape Arago is the Cape Arago Lighthouse, a well-known landmark 12 miles southwest of North Bend and Coos Bay off US-101. The lighthouse stands 100 feet above the Pacific Ocean on islet just off Gregory Point, the northwest promontory of Cape Arago, 2.5 miles southwest of the entrance to Coos Bay. The light atop the 44-foot-high tower was first illuminated in 1934. Although newest in terms of service, earlier structures were built on this site in 1866 and 1908. Both succumbed to weather and erosion. This lighthouse also has a fog horn. Sailors can identify its unique sound.
 The community of Arago is some 18 miles to the northwest of the lighthouse. and about six miles south of the town of Coquille. Ms. T. P. Hanley of Bandon said that Arago was named by her father, the late Henry Schroeder, of the cape. The Arago post office was established April 7, 1886. William H. Schroeder was first postmaster of this office, which was not named for a racehorse, as is sometimes asserted. The community was formerly called Halls Prairie, but postal authorities rejected a name of two words. On February 28, 1959, the Arago office was designated a rural station of Myrtle Point.

Coos Bay

 Coos Bay, like Lincoln City, is a consolidated community. As the result of votes at two city elections held November 7 and December 28, 1944, the name of the community of Marshfield was changed to Coos Bay, thus doing away with a geographic title that had been in use for 90 years.
 On January 8, 1965, the City of Empire also voted to consolidate with Coos Bay, and the name Empire, in use for over a century, like Marshfield, became a thing of the past.


Coos Bay Bridge 1940
Photo Courtesy of Julie Hendricks


  Empire is a suburban area four miles northwest of the heart of the City of Coos Bay and near North Bend. Its first settlers were Jacksonville men, called the Coos Bay Company and headed by Perry B. Marple, who left the place during the height of the local gold fever. Discovery of gold in Northern California and Southwestern Oregon led to the formation of the project, and stock in the company was offered for sale in the Oregonian, January 7, 1854.
 Empire City was formerly county seat of Coos County. A custom house was established there in 1853 for the Southern Collection District in Oregon, with David Bushing port collector.
 Established April 30, 1858, Empire City was the first post office in the Coos Bay region, with John J. Jackson serving as first postmaster. It was named with the expectation that this community would become the heart of a vast region, rich in natural resources and focused on an excellent port. It was located on the east side of Coos Bay, four miles northwest of the heart of the City of Coos Bay.
 The town soon had a lumber mill and did considerable shipping, particularly a low grade coal that was for a time mined south of Marshfield. Local trade declined as North Bend grew in prominence, though Empire residents were slow to accept their fate.
 Empire City post office operated with that name until October 20, 1894, when the title was changed to Empire. Chauncey M. Byler first postmaster of the new office. The pioneer dream of being the hub of a vast empire had faded by this time, and the deletion of "City" from the settlement's name was prudent.
 One mill, however, was kept in good condition; during many years of idleness the machinery was greased at intervals and turned over, and resumed operations during WWI. Over the years other industries established themselves there, until the town achieved a position of prominence in the industrial and commercial life of the Bay Area. Fish canneries and a pulp mill also provided local employment. Many new homes were built after WWI, and Empire had one of the area's most attractive schools.

Eastside

 Located on the southeast shore of Coos Bay, just east of the City of Coos Bay, Eastside was at one time the terminal of the old Coos Bay Military Wagon Road. The post office, formerly known as East Marshfield, was established January 14, 1908, with William J. LaPalme first postmaster. The post office was designated a rural station of Coos Bay on August 31, 1957, and in 1983 Eastside merged with and is now a part of the City of Coos Bay.
 The earlier East Marshfield post office was established September 28, 1891 with Charles J. Bishop was first postmaster. The office was discontinued August 30, 1919, and re-established December 9, 1907.

Marshfield

 Marshfield was located on the west shore of Coos Bay near the mouth of Isthmus Slough. The name was transferred from Marshfield, Massachusetts, by early settlers.
 The first cabin in the area was built by a trapper called Tolman in 1853. In the following year he left and a retired seaman, Capt. George Hamilton, move in. Hamilton, following the wilderness custom, took an Indian woman for a wife and managed to subsist without neighbors until the arrival of John and George Pershbaker a few years later.
 George Pershbaker provided stock for a trading post to meet the needs of men arriving to work in the shipyards John Pershbaker had established. Pershbaker's first boat was a tug, the Escot; later his plant built the schooners Staghound, Louise Morrison, Ivanhoe, and Annie Stauffer, and the barkentine Amelia.
 The Marshfield post office established June 22, 1871, with Andrew Nashburg first postmaster.
 But the population still grew very slowly; in 1884 it still had only about 800 people. In addition to its isolation, one factor that hindered the growth was the type of ground on which the town had been founded and from which it had taken its name.

The Lynching of Alonzo Tucker 1906

 African-Americans were unequivocally not wanted in Oregon. Some, nevertheless, persisted quietly and settled in the state. The 1850 Census reported in the entire Pacific Northwest either 54 or 56. The 1860 Census identified 124 blacks and mulattos, a tiny fraction of the more than 52,000 residents enumerated. Those who settled in Oregon too risks, but they had known prejudice and discrimination far worse in other parts of the country. Sometimes, however, racial episodes erupted. These occurred sporadically in several parts of the state over a period of 70 years.
 By 1890, the black population of Coos County was 36. Most worked for the local railroad or at the Beaver Hill and Libby coal mines. Recruited in West Virginia, they had emigrated across the country and walked through the Coast Range from Roseburg to the Lower Coquille River, only to find that they and their families were expected to live in leaking boxcars. The men had to work in the deep shafts reaching below sea level for 90 cents a day. When they complained, they were accused of fomenting labor strife and compelled to leave.
 Alonzo Tucker was an African-American who worked as a bootblack and operator of a gym in Marshfield. In 1906 dubious charges of rape were leveled against him by a non-colored woman. When a mob of 200 armed men marched on the jail, the marshal freed Tucker, who hid beneath a dock. He was twice shot the next morning and then hanged from the Fourth Street Bridge by a mob that had grown to more than 300. The coroner's inquest found no fault; the victim, the report said, had died of asphyxiation. No indictments were brought. The local paper observed that the lynch mob was "quiet and orderly" and that the vigilante proceeding was no "unnecessary disturbance of the peace." In 1907 the Marshfield School Board instituted segregated education, alleging that the four African-American students "will materially retard the progress of the 500 white children."
 In 1908 lumber interests decided to overcome the natural handicaps of the townsite where they were erecting a mill and started dredging operations to deepen the channel through the crooked bay and to use the silt removed from the channel to raise the town land. Still growth was slow.
 Then came WWI with its enormous demands for spruce to be used in construction of the new fighting craft—the airplanes. The Southern Pacific tracks were hastily extended southward to the Coos Bay towns and on up into forests.
 The boom economy was reflected in the need for an additional post office, and Marshfield Station No. 1, located at 298 Front Street, was established February 1, 1916 to meet the needs of the area's postal customers. That contract station was, however, discontinued on March 31, 1929.
 During the war years Coos Bay mushroomed into a city whose streets on Saturday were filled with hard-drinking, exuberant lumberjacks, and roistering ship-loaders. After the war, activity lessened but did not die, and the town settled down to a more solid kind of development. A fire in 1922 swept away three blocks of old business buildings and many jerrybuilt affairs constructed during the boom; though this was considered a disaster at the time, it was probably a blessing because the buildings that replaced those that had burned were more modern and of better construction.
 The Marshfield post office was renamed Coos Bay on February 15, 1945.

Coos City

 Coos City, one of the early post offices of Coos County, was established June 25, 1873, with Henry A. Coston first postmaster. The office continued in service until March 18, 1884. It was situated on Isthmus Slough about five miles south of Marshfield as it was then known. There is little left of the community, but the name is retained by the Coos City Bridge. An important road turned eastward at this point headed to Roseburg.
 The recorded myths of the Coos add interest to many features in the region. Perhaps the blue-flowered camas marks the spot where Night Rainbow and her young grandson defied the great Grizzly Bear, their persecutor, and slew him. Another tells of the Great Fire Wind which drove the Coos into the sea to escape its consuming heat.

Coos River

 Coos River was located about six miles east of Marshfield near the junction of the Coos and Millicoma rivers.
 Millicoma River is the main north branch of Coos River and is sometimes called North Fork Coos River, although the USBGN has adopted the style Millicoma. In 1929 S. B. Cartwright, pioneer surveyor of Coos County, said that Millicoma was the original Coos name for the stream, but the meaning of the word is unknown.
 Named for the stream nearby, Coos River, established March 7, 1863, was the third post office in Coos County. Amos C. Rogers and Frank W. Bridges, well-known pioneer settlers in the area, served as the first two postmaster. Rogers was the first postmaster of this early office, which was discontinued September 20, 1864. The office was re-established February 10, 1873, with Bridges taking over as postmaster, and permanently closed its doors on September 24, 1875. The original spelling of this post office, "Coose," followed a form popular at the time. Some maps of this era even show the name of the river as "Goose."

Cooston

 Cooston is on the the east shore of Coos Bay, almost directly opposite North Bend, and its origin is the same of that as Coos County, created December 22, 1853, by the territorial legislature.
 The county was originally formed from the west parts of Umpqua and Jackson counties. Coos is an Indian name of a native tribe who lived in the vicinity of Coos Bay. the name is first mentioned by Lewis and Clark, who spell it Cook-koo-oose. The explorers heard the name among the Clatsop Indians. Alexander R. McLeod in his journal of 1828 gives the name Cahoose; Slacum, in his report of 1837, gives the name of Coos River Cowis; Wilkes, in Western America, spells it Cowes. The spelling has been variously Koo'as, Kowes, Koos, Coose, and finally Coos.
 One Indian meaning of Coos is "lake," another, "place of pines." Perry B. Marple, who began exploring Coos Bay in 1853, spelled the word Coose in 1902, and said sit was an Indian perversion of the English word "coast," meaning a place where ships can land. Another version is that the Indian word was made to resemble the name of a county in New Hampshire.
 The Coos were of the Kusan family, formerly living at Coos Bay. Lewis and Clark estimated there population at 1500 in 1805. The name is often used as synonymous with the family name. Hale, in US Exploring Expedition, Ethnology and Philology, gives the name as Kwokwoos and Kaus; Parrish, in Indian Affairs Report for 1854, gives Co-ose.
 Coos County has an area of 1586 square miles. In 1844, Duflot de Mofras got off the prize pun in the history of Oregon geographic names when he published his work Exploration du Territoire de l'Oregon. He called Coos River la riviere aux Vaches, or Cows River, apparently after talking to some of the Scots employed by the Hudson's Bay Company.
 The Cooston post office was established May 13, 1908, and the first postmaster was William E. Homme, who named the place. The office closed to North Bend on July 15, 1939.

Siamese Twins

  The modern-day City of Coos Bay, with its Siamese twin North Bend share a common boundary and, in places, are impossible to distinguish, creating one metropolitan area—the largest on the Oregon Coast. The twin cities are connected by the mile-long McCullough steel bridge with deco-style spires at the entrance. It's is the only place where buildings rise to five or six stories, and where the feeling is unreconstructedly working class. Together with Charleston, the tri-cities compose what has come to be known as "Oregon's Bay Area," a small-scale megalopolis.
 Ironically, though, the area's greatest asset and most obvious feature is often ignored by visitors and residents alike—the bay itself. Coos Bay is the largest deepwater port between San Francisco and Puget Sound, and exports more timber than any other port in the world, much of it now wood chips headed to Japanese paper mills. The Lower Coos River is lined with smokestacks, big mounds of wood chips, and warehouses. It's a busy waterway for foreign and domestic shipping but it is also a fisherman and small boater's delight. Clammers and crabbers walk the beaches.
 Coos Bay is noted for its Empire clams, which sometimes weigh four or five pounds each. The large necks of these clams can be split into sections after scraping off the rough outer skin; the sections are then well pounded, dipped in seasoned flour or cornmeal, and fried to a crisp brown.
 The Indian method of making clam chowder was to soak the clams overnight in a freshwater stream, and then throw them into a hollowed log containing water heated to the boiling point by hot stones. After they had opened, the clams were scraped from their shells and replaced in the water, together with chunks of jerked or smoked venison, dried wild onions, and Wapato roots that the squaws had gathered in dry lake beds.
 Coos Bay is also a sprawling estuary, rich in marine wildlife, and a great place to enjoy a variety of water sports and activities.
 In 1998, the town received national attention from Time magazine in its "Banned in the USA" article: "Hey, Happy Fourth of July! Sure, it's a free country, but sometimes there oughta be a law against laws. Some don't, sensible to silly, from around the nation. In Coos Bay, "no possession of paint, ink or chalk with intent to apply graffiti is allowed."

Charleston

 Charleston is located at the mouth of South Slough on Coos Bay, about six miles southwest of North Bend. David A. Jones was first postmaster of the Charleston post office, established February 24, 1924. The office was named for early pioneer Charles Haskell, who settled at the mouth of South Slough in 1853. On September 30, 1959, Charleston was designated a rural station of Coos Bay.
 At Charleston are canneries, fish-processing plants, boat building and repair facilities, and one of the largest commercial fishing fleets on the Oregon Coast. The area is also popular with sport fishermen, crabbers, and clam diggers.
 One of the best-kept secrets in Oregon is the Coast Guard lookout at Charleston, which commands the best view of the bay, jetties, and Coos Bay Bar—a place to watch fishing boats and freighters come and go.

South Slough Estuarine Preserve

 To many people, an estuary is just a place where you get stuck in the mud. More often than not, however, the interface of fresh water and salt water represents one of the richest ecosystems on earth, capable of producing five times more plant material than a cornfield of comparable size while supporting great numbers of fish and wildlife. The South Slough of Coos Bay is the largest such web of life on the Oregon Coast.
 Experienced canoeists can, with a little planning, use the slough's tides to travel north, towards Charleston and the Pacific Ocean, with the outgoing tide and return to the launch site as the tide comes back in. When the tide's out, perch, salmon, and crabs feed on the clams, shrimp, and worms that live buried in the mud. Farther up the slough's narrow tributaries, narrow channels of water reach into agricultural flats and yield broad, low views of fields and fringes of forests.
 Trails pass through coastal forest and 19th Century logging sites down to a boardwalk through a swamp and a salt marsh. Coos Bay was once strewn with such marshes, but they've largely been diked and turned into "productive" land.

Confederated Tribes of Coos, Lower Umpqua and Siuslaw

 The term "aboriginal territory" refers to the area occupied by Indian Nations prior to European settlement. The aboriginal territory of the Confederated Tribes of Coos, Lower Umpqua (Kuitsh) and Siuslaw Indians covers 1.6 million acres in Coos, Douglas and Lane counties (roughly between Florence and Coos Bay), reaching inland to the crest of the Coast Range. Today, the confederation administers services in this area as part of a five-county service district for tribal members. Land issues are being jointly addressed by the federal government and the tribes.

Early Culture: 1200 BCE

 Archaeological digs document tribal occupation of the area as far back as 3,200 years ago. It is suspected by archaeologists that occupation of the area actually goes much farther back.
 No one knows for sure how many Indians lived on Coos Bay, but it was a popular and populated area that was also visited regularly by Indians that normally resided further inland. The best estimates are that 1,500 to 2,000 Kusan lived in plank houses along the bay shore in as many as 40 or 50 villages.
 In early times, the confederation mirrored the life ways common along the entire Northwest Coast of North America. The Coos, Lower Umpqua (Kuitsh) and Siuslaw lived closely and harmoniously with the land. They relied on the estuary to provide most of their necessities. They were hunters and gatherers, harvesting vast quantities of salmon and other fish, shellfish, and marine mammals from the bay and its many tributaries. In the bordering forests, meadows, and marshes they hunted deer and waterfowl, pit-trapped elk, picked berries, and harvested edible plants. They gathered reeds and grasses to make mats and baskets. They utilized the resources of the cedar tree to fashion clothing, dugout canoes and built their plank houses and huts.
 Because of the rich bounty of the bay and adjacent lands, the Kusan were a self-sufficient people who lived in relative peace and tranquility. Possessing a stratified society, they were variously described as robust and healthy in appearance, good-natured and generous in demeanor. And why shouldn't they have been? Theirs was a temperate paradise.
 The Hanis, located on Coos River and Coos Bay, formed one dialectic group of the Kusan linguistic family, the other being Miluk. Those who spoke Miluk lived near Lower Coquille River. It is probable that this stock was connected with the Yakonan. Mooney (1928) estimated that the Hanis and the Miluk together numbered 2,000 in 1780. In 1805 Lewis and Clark estimated 1,500 Hanis. The 1910 Census returned 93 for the entire stock and the 1930 Census returned 107, while, again for the stock, the US Office of Indian Affairs reported 55 in 1937.
 During the centuries preceding American expansion and pioneer settlement of the western frontier, there was no written record of Indian life along the Oregon Coast. Much of what we know is pieced together from various sources, augmented by the lore Indians passed on verbally from one generation to the next. For the time being, we have to fill in the blanks with reasoned assumptions.
 British and American fur traders were probably the first to make regular contacts with Indians of Oregon’s south coast. We know, for example, that Alexander McLeod of the Hudson's Bay Company explored the south coast, including Coos Bay, in 1926 and 1827.
 In 1828, the Jedediah Smith expedition reached the south coast and camped at various spots near and on Coos Bay: Whiskey Run on July 3, Cape Arago on July 4, Shore Acres on July 5, Sunset Bay on July 6 and 7, Charleston on July 8, Lower Coos Bay near Empire on July 9, and the North Spit on July 10.
 Of course, none of these places went by those names then. There was no community called Empire, and in place of Charleston, as we know it today, was a large Indian village—probably the largest on the bay.
 The Lower Umpqua (Kuitsh) attacked and wiped out Smith's exploring party at the mouth of the Umpqua, leaving only three survivors. Around the same time the Siuslaw destroyed a Chinookan slaving expedition.
 On June 30, 1851, a bedraggled band of nine white men, fleeing from Ewing Harbor (now Port Orford) and a skirmish at Battle Rock, broke through the brush on Lower Coos Bay to be greeted by local Indians. John Kirkpatrick, leader of the band, later described the Indians as friendly, generous, and hospitable hosts—a report that’s consistent with those of the early explorers and traders.
 Early tribal members depended heavily on fishing and berry gathering for subsistence. The fern digging-stick was used to gather fern and other roots. Chisels made of elk horn or hard gravel/stone were used to cut or pry wood for building plank-slab houses. The bow and arrow was used for hunting. Needles were made of hard arrow wood or deer ribs and used in mat-making.
 To make fire, a hole was bored in a dry piece of willow and dry bark or roots were placed inside. Friction from rotating a hard arrow in the hole caused the materials to ignite, causing the willow wood to catch fire.
 Bretz said that two beachcombing Siuslaw inspired the name for the City of Florence:

 Two beachcombing Siuslaw found a piece of flotsam. Intrigued by the printing on the board, they took the slab of wood to the owner of the town's hotel. Seeing the name on the board, the owner hung the shingle over the hotel entrance.
 And as the legend tells, this burgeoning community astride Central Oregon's Siuslaw River was named for a piece of flotsam from the wreckage of the ship Florence. The Indian name Osceola passed into history.

 The tribes used wealth as an arbiter of social distinction and political power, yet possessed an atomized society wherein village autonomy prevailed. The Spirit Quest was a rite of passage for most boys and many girls, and enabled tribal members to come to terms with nature and spiritual values. The tribes had a rich, oral literature and a clear cosmology. They maintained peaceful relations with whites during the fur trade, early settlement, and even the Rogue River wars of the 1850s.

Confederation Formed 1855

 The Coos, Lower Umpqua (Kuitsh) and Siuslaw were linked by the BIA as a confederation in 1855 when they were removed to reservations.
 Bretz wrote that the Siuslaw roamed freely in the area until 1852:

That year the Indians signed an agreement with the US government, giving the tribe a reservation of 2.5 million acres of heavily timbered land.

 He wrote that at that time, the Siuslaw, numbering about 3,000, were decimated by a smallpox epidemic in 1872:

There were less than 400 members of the tribe remaining after that devastating epidemic, the size of the reservation was reduced. The Indians were offered a homestead of 160 acres around Siuslaw River, or a place on the reservation.

 In 1916, The tribes established a formal, elected tribal government, which they have continuously maintained.

Confederation Terminated 1954-1984

 In 1954, the Confederated Tribes of Coos, Lower Umpqua and Siuslaw were terminated by the federal government under the Western Oregon Termination Act. As the result of several years of effort, The tribes were afforded federal recognition in 1984.
 Today, the Confederated Tribes enjoy a government-to-government relationship with the US, and are recognized as a sovereign Indian nation. The seat of tribal government is Coos Bay, where the tribes maintain a 6.12 acre reservation, held in trust status by the US government. The current tribal government consists of at tribal council and chief. The tribal administrator and staff conduct day to day business for the confederation.
 The Confederated Tribes of Coos, Lower Umpqua and Siuslaw is in the planning stages with the US Bureau of Land Management, the US Coast Guard, and Oregon State Parks on a major interpretive center for the Oregon Coast.

Coquille River Valley

 The rivers that discharge into the Pacific along the Southern Oregon Coast are placid and bucolic, with tidewater often stretching inland for many miles. One of the most beautiful is the Coquille, which meanders through a wide, pasture-covered valley. Highway 42-S skirts along the south side of the river, passing through the tiny hamlet of Riverton, a former river port located on the south bank of Coquille River, about 12 miles east of Bandon. Riverton was a trade center of farmers who specialize in pea-raising. The pea-raising farms are recognized by their vine covered trellises. The post office was established June 30, 1890, with Orlando A. Kelly first postmaster. The Riverton office was discontinued November 25, 1903, and re-established September 15, 1906. On May 26, 1961, Riverton was designated a rural station of Coquille, and was discontinued permanently on July 21, 1973.


Coquille River Lighthouse 1960
Photo Courtesy of Julie Hendricks

Parkersburgh

 The remnants of Parkersburgh are across a meadow on the south bank of the Coquille near the mouth of Bear Creek. This place, about three miles east of Bandon, was once a rival of other Coos County ports. Lumber mills were opened here in 1867-1868, then shipyards to build schooners to carry timber to market. Parkersburgh post office was established August 30, 1877 with Meldon L. Hanscom serving as first postmaster. The office was named for Capt. Judah Parker, who built a sawmill here in 1876. A salmon cannery, built in 1885, brought added prosperity but was burned some years later. Then lumber traffic was diverted to deeper waters and the town died. On March 15, 1919, the Parkersburgh office closed to Bandon.
 A few miles from the coast, the weather changes abruptly; marine fogs simply don't penetrate very far inland. Early mornings find the quiet river broken with the wakes of a dozen skiffs; fishermen are out trolling for salmon. This is dairy country; the milk is condensed and then shipped to Oakland, where Safeway turns it into ice cream.

Coquille

 Coquille, the seat of Coos County, is as pretty a village as you are likely to find. For many years this coastal town of 4,000 was the head of navigation for river boats. On their regular runs clumsy old sternwheelers packed with merchandise and lively with the shouts of laborers, paddled up the wharves. But construction of the modern highway destroyed the picturesque character of the town, which desires to look as much like other towns as possible.
 Coquille post office was established July 1, 1870. Titus B. Willard was first postmaster of this office, located on the Coquille near the mouth of Cunningham Creek, and about 17 miles south of Coos Bay.
 The Coquille Valley Art Center and a new golf course suggest that perhaps this valley is becoming a retirement center, but there is a plywood plant here, too, and the fellows you see on the street or downing a beer in a bar are likely to be wearing the traditional dress of the logger or forester—blue jeans, a vertical-striped cotton shirt, and wide red suspenders.
 In the 1960s, the movie theater closed and people were wondering what to do with their evenings. So the Spouse of a local physician, a woman still quick on her feet, set about creating a song-and-dance company that has amused summer audiences ever since. Every Saturday night, from Memorial Day to Labor Day, the Sawdust theater puts on a "melodrama with olio;" patrons hiss the villain and cheer on the hero, all the while enjoying a beer and clapping to the beat of the can can dancers.
 Coquille is a French word meaning "small shell." Soquel appears in the Oregonian, January 7, 1854, in an advertisement of the Coos Bay Company. The name is there said to be Indian for "eel." Coquette appears on a map of John B. Preston, surveyor-general of Oregon, 1851, probably intended for Coquille. It appears Coquille in Preston's map of 1856. French-Canadian fur traders may have left the form of the name among the Indians. Capt. W. V. Tichenor in Pioneer History of Coos and Curry Counties, says the Indian name of this stream was Nes-sa-til-cut, but gives no further information. In an article in the Coos Bay Times, November 29, 1943, Mary M. Randleman, Coos County pioneer, says the word is of Indian origin and cites a number of early uses of the style Coquelle and Coquel. The Handbook of American Indians lists the Mishikhwutmetunne Indians, who lived along the Coquille River, and says that the Chetco name for some of these Indians was Ku-kwil-tunne, and Kiguel in a form listed as being used as early as 1846. This seems to indicate an Indian origin of the name. On October 25, 1938, the Oregonian printed on its editorial page an interesting letter from Sam Van Pelt, an aged Indian living at Brookings, who recounted the difficulties of spelling Indian names with "English" letters. "Coquilth" was the result of his efforts to produce the correct sound, but no interpretation of the word was furnished.

The Coquille: Images of the People

 Before Europeans came, the Coquille River area was the traditional homeland of the Coquille. Like other Native Americans who lived along Oregon's coast, they were nurtured by the land and the water. The ocean, bay and rivers provided an abundance of food, as did the forests, meadows, and valleys.

The Setting

 Along the Southern Oregon Coast, which excites the tourist while it repels the sailor, Coos Bay stands out as a potential haven. Opening the land to the sea, the Bay unlocks the resources of the ocean for the land dweller, and makes the land approachable to seafarers. Thus it became an attractive port to Europeans and their descendants in the 1850s and invited immigrants into the entire south coast.
 At Bandon, 20 miles south of Coos Bay, the mouth of the Coquille River empties into the Pacific. Surrounding it is the traditional home of the Coquille—a complex set of waterways which dominate an area of approximately 200 square miles. The area includes bays, inlets, sloughs, rivers, creeks, and lakes. Also of importance are beaches, small valleys, meadows, rugged bluffs, and parts of the Coast Range.
 Plants and animals were important to the ancient Coquille. Aquatic environments provided many varieties of animals such as fish, clams, oysters, seals, sea lions, and birds. Deer, elk, bear, and many smaller mammals were important terrestrial resources. Vegetation was used, too. Seaweed, salal, and many types of berries, as well as trees, were part of the inventory. Collectively, the area and its resources provided food, medicine, clothing, and tools for their way of life. Uniquely, the land, water, and the Coquille people were but one.

The People and Their Past

 Information regarding the traditional lifestyle of the Coquille, as well as other clans along the Oregon Coast, is sparse. Yet, from existing evidence and comparison with people in similar environments, we are able to portray important aspects of this culture.
 For example, Indians on the Southern Oregon Coast built two basic types of houses. For their permanent winter villages they dug foundations several feet into the ground and erected houses of cedar planks. In the summer temporary conical huts of grass and tree fibers on pole frames were built during hunting and foraging trips.
 The Coquille had many devices for capturing game. Traditionally, salmon were captured by baskets or by nets. Although fish were cooked in a variety of ways, baking pits dug into the sand were quite popular. First, a pit was dug and a fire built in it. When the wood was hot, sand was added until it was well heated. The sand and wood layering continued and on the next day hot rocks were added to a second pit. In that pit a whole salmon, covered with mud and wrapped in seaweed, was baked with the hot sand as a cover. Seasoning included camas, skunk cabbage and other seafoods.
 Other material aspects of culture were baskets, leather clothing, tools for capturing and preparing game, canoes, and bows which were made of yew wood with buckskin for the bow string. Information regarding religion, social and political organization, community life, crafts, and other features has not been recorded, too.

Coquille "Barriers to Development"

 The area's natural resources were attractive to non-indian settlers. Besides the abundant food supplies, gold, coal, and timber were stimulus for settlement and development. During the early 1850s the potential for Coos Bay as a major port between San Francisco and Portland was realized. The discovery of gold and coal attracted miners, farmers, merchants, and those who would settle the area. The Donation Land Act of 1850 provided additional stimulus to immigrants.
 Shortly after 1850 towns and communities emerged along the Southern Oregon Coast. Because the Coquille and other Coastal Indians were perceived as "barriers to development," action was promptly taken to remove them from their homelands. In the mid-1850s the Coquille deeded lands to the government and many were taken to reservations. Here some starved, and others were exposed to diseases which were new to them. Yet many survived and returned to the new cities built upon their former lands.

The People and Their Plants

 Although radical changes occurred in Coquille culture, extinction was not achieved, for the heritage was preserved by descendants.
 In their myths and legends, Coquilles wove the knowledge of their plants, animals, and other natural resources. Plants provided food and were used in medicine, technology, and crafts. The collection of plants also tells us about their social organization. Many plants were simply eaten fresh. Others were processed so they might be stored during winter months. Those which were stored were first steamed to prevent spoilage, and then dried.
 Many species of plants were harvested, including the following:

 • Cattail (Typha latifolia): Cattail rhizomes, the plant's underground stems, were eaten fresh, and also were processed for storage. Mixed with lard, cattail down was applied to burns.

 • Western Red Cedar (Thuja plicata): Western Red cedar was an especially versatile resource. Fresh cut boughs, both aromatic and insect repellent, were used with deerskin as a floor covering. The rain repellent bark provided an exterior for winter homes and burial wrappings. Western Red cedar possesses a natural antibiotic which may have aided basket and canoe makers who worked with its fibers.

 • Oregon Grape (Berberis spp.): The Oregon Grape roots, sometimes called "old people's medicine," was boiled in water to produce a tonic claimed to purify the blood.

 • Skunk Cabbage (Lysichitum americanum): This plant was used for a variety of purposes, primarily medicinal. For example, leaves were rubbed on the skin to ward off mosquitoes, and the application of the juice from fresh crushed leaves soothed poison oak infections.

 Literally hundreds of plants existed in the Coquille's inventory. Many were used individually, others collectively for special purposes. Information on the role of plants in Coquille culture has been primarily revealed through their oral tradition, and much has been forgotten. Still, the oral tradition of these people embodies their way of life, including their cosmology, or world view.

The Coquille and Their Stories

 Stories of Coyote, the Trickster who transformed the world and made it fit for human habitation, are told by Coquilles and by many other Amerindian tribes. But the stories are unique in each area for they identify local places and tell how they came to be as they are. For example, Coyote's ravenous romping across the south coast was said to have distributed wild strawberries and other berries which the Coquille depended on, in fresh or dried form, throughout the year. Coyote, who originally was a super-human person, unified the human, the natural, and the supernatural realms. His lust for life and adventure frequently got him into trouble and also made exciting tales for the long winter nights. To punish Coyote for his deceptions, his son threw a skins over the old man's back and made him go henceforth on all four as a coyote.
 Many stories, such as the following, which Wilfred Wasson tells, have a beautiful simplicity:

 The World Maker made the world and sent four sounds around the world. Then he went away and never bothered anybody again. In the beginning there wasn't any beach, and so the tides and waves would come inland, and they were always disturbing the people. And so someone—I think it was Coyote—wove a mat, and then the waves and tides couldn't come through. That became the beach.

The Coquille in the 20th Century

 After an initial experience with reservation life in the mid-19th Century, many Coquille returned to their homeland. Where their villages once stood there now were towns, mines, and farms. Where the camas had grown, there were now farmers' fields. Forests were being cut. But the people, too, had changed, and not by choice.
 The old way of life was not workable in the new cultural world, but It was not forgotten. In the 1980s the Coquille are working to preserve their culture. More than a tribe, they are a family, held together by a knowledge of their heritage and their ancestors.
 The Coquille are typical of many indigenous clans in Oregon, such as the Kalapuya, who were thought to be extinct. Not so. Remnants of their culture remain and are nourished as they pass from generation to generation.

Myrtle Point

 Myrtle Point is located about nine miles south of Coquille on Coquille River. The early history of the town is given by Orvil Dodge in his History of Coos and Curry Counties. It was a natural rendezvous of the Indians. Henry Myers laid out the town about 1861 and named it Meyersville. It remained a paper community until 1866 when Christian Lehnherr bought the property, and built a small flour mill. He named the place Ott in compliment to an old friend and his son. Lehnherr became the first postmaster on August 27, 1872. Binger Hermann and Edward Bender became interested in the townsite, incorporated in 1887, and suggested the name be changed to Myrtle Point. Postal records show that the name of the Ott post office was changed to Myrtle Point on December 29, 1876. Bender was first postmaster of the Myrtle Point office. There are numerous groves of Oregon myrtle in this area, and in fact this has been designated part of Oregon's Myrtle Corridor from Coos Bay to Roseburg.
 This Oregon or Coos Bay myrtle is the same as California laurel (Umbellularia californica). It is an evergreen tree, distinguished by a strong camphor odor. In favorable conditions it grows 80 feet high and four feet in diameter. In the dense forest it grows with a clean straight trunk, but elsewhere and most commonly it has a thick trunk and large low limbs. Its range in Oregon is in the Coast Range and Siskiyou Mountains. It has a beautiful grain and excels as a cabinet and finishing wood. Myrtle grows extensively in Southwest Oregon.

The Oregon Connection

 Myrtle wood carving of bowls, clocks, tables, and other utensils, is an Oregon folk art with a long history, that is still carried on today at the Oregon Connection in Coos Bay.
 In 1869, the golden spike marking the completion of the nation's first transcontinental railroad was driven into a highly polished myrtle wood tie. Novelist Jack London was so taken by the beauty of the wood's swirling grain that he ordered an entire suite of furniture. Hudson's Bay trappers used myrtle wood leaves to brew tea as a remedy for chills.
 During the Depression years, the City of North Bend issued myrtle wood coins after the only bank in town failed. The coins ranged from 50 cents to $10 and are still redeemable—though they are worth far more as collector items.

Bandon

 Bandon, located 24 miles south of Coos Bay, is a community on the south side of the mouth of Coquille River. The town, which is near the site of an Amerindian village, was first called The Ferry and then Averill. Lord George Bennett, an Irish nobleman, who settled here in 1873, finally gave the place the name of his native town, Bandon, on Bandon River, County Cork, Ireland. Bennett married Katherine Ann Scott Harrison, and three children were born to them, two of whom were prominent citizens of Coos County. He imported the Irish furze, that in early spring yellows the sand hills along the highway southward; a thorny shrub, its pea-like flowers have an odor similar to that of coconut oil.


Bandon by the Sea 1930
Photo Courtesy of Julie Hendricks


  An Englishman, William Davidson, known locally as Billy Buckhorn, is said to have been the first resident. Bandon post office was established September 12, 1877, with John Lewis first of a long line of postmasters.
 This Oregon community, sometimes called Bandon-By-The-Sea, could as fittingly be called Phoenix. Like the mythical bird, Bandon has twice risen from its own ashes after fire consumed it.
 In 1914, a fire left a large part of downtown Bandon a smoldering heap. Then on September 26, 1936, fire again swept through the town. This time nearly 2,000 residents were evacuated, and Bandon was reduced to charred rubble. An abandoned lighthouse at the south end of Coquille River was one of the few structures left standing after the fire.
 On that "Black Saturday" the hope that Bandon would become the most prominent port between Portland and San Francisco was forever dashed.
 Reconstruction was begun in 1938 with federal aid and on plans prepared by the Oregon State Planning Board, which provided for a better arrangement of facilities, wide streets, recreational areas, and better educational facilities. Trees and grasses were planted on the burned over environs and the design of business structures was controlled. The long-term result was the emergence of a seaside hamlet with a relaxed pace and innate charm neither Portland nor San Francisco could even remotely approximate.
 In recent years the travel industry has gained importance in Bandon, and the town has grown and improved, attracting a lively lot of artists and artisans. More than three dozen artists live and work in the area. The city also has enough cowboy philosophers, yarn-spinning old salts, mystics, and iconoclasts to keep things interesting.

Bandon Bogs

 Reddish-tinged ground in flood-irrigated fields come into view from the vantage point of US-101 between Port Orford and ten miles north of Bandon. A closer look reveals, cranberries, small evergreens that creep along the ground and send out runners that take root. Along the runners, upright branches six to eight inches long are formed, on which pink flowers and fruits develop.
 These berries are cultivated in bogs to satisfy their tremendous need for water and to protect them against insects and winter cold. Bandon leads Oregon in this crop, with an output ranking third in the nation. Oregon berries are often used in juice production by Ocean Spray because of their deep red pigment and high vitamin C content. The Bandon crop could well take on a higher profile nationally due to the nationwide demise of wild bees (over 90 percent have been killed) who are the principal cranberry pollinators. On the Oregon Coast, domestic bees have taken up the breach left in the wake of their winged counterparts killed by a European mite infestation.
 Oregon bogs were producing wild cranberries when Lewis and Clark first traded with the Indians for them in 1805. Shortly thereafter, cultivated bogs were developed in Massachusetts, which like in Oregon had acid soils with lots of organic materials conducive to berry production. By the California goldrush of 1849, East Coast growing and harvesting techniques had transformed Bandon’s marshes into commercial cranberry bogs. In the years to come, much of the modern equipment for harvesting these bogs was developed in Bandon. Wet-picking, for instance, is facilitated by the water reel, which is rotated to create eddies on the bog to shake berries off the vines. After they float to the surface, the cranberries are pushed by long booms toward the submerged hopper. They are then transferred by conveyer belt onto trucks. Walking through the bogs without trampling the berries is made possible by fastening wooden platforms with short pegs to the soles of boots.
 Without such innovations, Thanksgiving dinner wouldn't be the same. In order to bring the enormous annual volume of cranberries to the dinner table for the holidays, all these harvesting techniques as well as processing and packaging technology are called into play.

Bandon Cheese

 The history of Bandon Cheese began with the development of pasture lands during the 1880s which lead to the advance of dairy farming in Southern Oregon. Few good roads existed in the area so milk was transported from Coquille River dairy farms to the original Bandon Cheese and Produce Company by sternwheeler river boat.
 Bandon Cheese is one of the few remaining cheese plants that at one time thrived along the Oregon Coast. It is because of the unique flavor and the recognized legendary quality of the product that the company still in business today.
 The process begins with the daily pickup of fresh whole milk from local dairy farms. The milk is pasteurized and pumped into long stainless steel vats. Special culture is added and allowed to properly develop. When the desired acidity is achieved, enzymes are added in order to coagulate the milk. Wire knives (harps) are pulled through the pudding like milk which forms the curd. Immediately the curd begins to separate from they whey. The curds are then stirred and slowly cooked until firm.
 After cooking, the whey is drained and the important "hand cheddaring" process begins, setting Bandon products apart from other Cheddar cheese on the market. The curd soon begins to mat and is hand cut into large slabs. The slabs are turned over and stacked several times.
 Hand stacking is the critical cheddaring process which compresses the whey out of the curd and gives Bandon Cheese its unique flavor and texture.
 When the culture has reached its optimum growth level the slabs of cheddared, curd are sent through shredders (mills), salted, and placed in 40-pound hoops to be pressed overnight. The cheese goes into cold storage and a controlled aging process begins.
 Bandon Cheese is aged a minimum of 60 days for medium and at least nine months for sharp. Each vat may vary just a bit. Some may take a little longer in order to reach the desired level of flavors and texture for which the company become known.
 The company still maintains that producing fine cheese is an art and cannot be short-cut.

Coquille River Lighthouse

 One of the most prominent Bandon landmarks is the Coquille River Lighthouse.
 Coquille River Lighthouse is located at Bullards Beach on the north bank of the Coquille River entrance. It was commissioned in 1886 to guide mariners across a dangerous bar. It was decommissioned in 1939 following improvements to the river channel and the installation of other navigational aids. The squat but attractive lighthouse was restored in 1979 as an interpretive center, and is kept in good repair. Its solar-powered system operates an ornamental light atop the 47-foot octagonal tower. The lighthouse stands in a highly-rated wildlife viewing area.


Coquille River Boats 1940
Photo Courtesy of Julie Hendricks

Sixes

 The town of Sixes was named for the nearby Sixes River, which was in turn was named by miners of the Southern Oregon goldrush with a corruption of the Chinook jargon salutation, Klahowya Sikhs. Volume I of the Handbook of American Indians, under the heading Kwatami, a subdivision of the Tututni, lists a number of alternative forms of the tribe name, but the form of spelling, "Sixes," was used as early as October 1855.
 The Kwatami or Quatama, occupied three settlements. The principle village was situated on Sixes Creek just north of Cape Blanco. In 1861, the tribe was later located on the Siletz Reservation, and consisted of 32 men, 41 women, and 53 children.
 The earliest Sixes post office, established February 13, 1888, was not located on Sixes River, but on Elk River about five miles east of Port Orford. Newton Divilbiss was the first postmaster. That office was discontinued August 24, 1889, and when it was reopened May 18, 1905, it was located near its present site; the crossing of Sixes River by US-101.
 Sixes River, after which the settlement was named, is an important stream flowing into the Pacific Ocean just north of Cape Blanco (42° 50' 14"), and draining a considerable part of Northern Curry County. L. B. Sprugeon, postmaster at Sixes office in 1926, wrote that it was named for a local chief, Sixes William, who died in 1894, and is buried in the Lower Siletz Area Cemetery. George Davidson, in the Coast Pilot for 1869, had a different history of the name and says that in 1851 it was usually called Sikhs River. On some maps he found the name of a stream in that locality shown as Sequalchin River.
 The Indian village on Sikhs River was known as Te-cheh-kutt. Capt. W. V. Tichenor, in Pioneer History of Coos and Curry Counties, says the Indian name of Sixes River was Sa-qua-mi Les.
 Along the upper waters of the Sixes, which is teeming with steelhead, are some gold deposits and in the early days black sands near its mouth yielded considerable dust to diligent panners.

Cape Blanco

 In 1602, Sebastian Vizcaino (1550-1616) sailed from Acapulco at the head of an exploring expedition, and after one of his ships had turned back to Monterey, Vizcaino in his ship and Martin de Aguilar in a fragata, left Monterey on January 3, 1603, sailing northward. During a storm the two ships separated and Vizcaino sailed up the coast alone, reaching a point which he named Cape San Sebastian on January 20. He returned to Acapulco without meeting the fragata. In the meantime de Aguilar also sailed northward, and he records that on January 19 he reached the 43rd parallel, and found a point which his pilot, Flores, named Cape Blanco, because of its chalky appearance. North of the cape he reported a large river. Here he turned back. Most of the crew of the fragata, including de Aguilar, died on the way to Acapulco. H. R. Wagner in Cartography of the Northwest Coast of America, Volume I, describes this voyage and calls attention to the fact that Cape Blanco was mentioned in the instructions, so that name was already in use before 1602. The recorded latitudes of this expedition are too great and there is nothing to show that the members ever reached the coast of Oregon or saw what is now Cape Blanco. The large Heceta-Bodega map prepared as a result of the 1775 expedition refers to this point as Cabo Diligensias. Bodega was off the cape September 27, 1775. On March 12, 1778, Capt. James Cook (1728-1799) writes of his discovery of Cape Arago (43° 18' 29"), which he called Cape Gregory, and stated that he thought he observed the Cape Blanco of de Aguilar in proximity. He was too far away to see the mouth of Coos Bay. On April 24, 1792, Capt. George Vancouver (1757-1798) sighted what we now know as Cape Blanco, and named it Cape Orford in honor of George, Earl of Orford (1720-1791), his "much respected friend." George, third Earl of Orford was the grandson of Sir Robert Walpole (1676-1745), first Earl of Orford and was the nephew of the fourth Earl of Orford, the famous Horace Walpole (1717-1797). Vancouver determined its latitude at 42• 52', very nearly its true position. There was some speculation on Vancouver's ship as to whether or not it was the Cape Blanco of de Aguilar, but the position and its dark color "did not seem to entitle it to the appellation of Cape Blanco." Vancouver brings up the matter again in his Voyage of Discovery in the latter part of the entry for April 25. He passed and identified Cape Gregory (now Cape Arago) of Capt. Cook, and made reasonably accurate determination of its latitude, through he noted the difference between his figures and Cook's. There was no other important point and he said: "This induced me to consider the above point as the Cape Gregory of Capt. Cook, with a probability of its being also the Cape Blanco of de Aguilar, if land hereabouts the latter ever saw." Vancouver finished his observations for the day by expressing a doubt that Cook saw Cape Blanco or any other cape south of Cape Gregory on March 27, 1778, and stated that it was fair to presume that what Cook saw was an inland mountain. Notwithstanding all these facts the name Cape Blanco has persisted for the most western cape of Oregon, even though it may not have originally been applied to it, and Vancouver's name Cape Orford has fallen into disuse.


Beach at Port Orford on the Oregon Coast Highway
Photo Courtesy of Julie Hendricks

Cape Blanco Lighthouse

 Built on 47.7 acres of land, Cape Blanco Lighthouse towers above the western-most point in Oregon, nine miles north of Port Orford off US-101.
 A two family dwelling was built for keepers quarters, with fireplaces in each room for heat. Several small buildings were constructed to house oil and other necessities. Most materials used for construction were shipped in, however, the bricks were made locally. Lt. Col. R. S. Williamson was the engineer of record, he rejected nearly 20,000 of the 200,000 bricks as inferior. Finally, the light station was completed and H. Burnap was hired as the first keeper. On the even of December 20, 1890 the Fresnel lens shown forth for the first time. Total cost for the station, $100,000.
 French physicist Augustin Jean Fresnel (1788-1826) made the greatest stride in lighthouse technology when he invented his optic system. Fresnel's system uses prisms to focus the light lost above and below the light source, back into a single beam of light. The light is focused through the center of the lens or "bullseye" creating a highly visible beam of light.
 Fresnel investigated polarized light with another French physicist, Dominique Francois Jean Arago (1786-1853), for whom Cape Arago is named.


Cape Arago Lighthouse
Photo Courtesy of Julie Hendricks


  This isolated lighthouse holds at least four Oregon records: it is the oldest continuously operating light; the most westward point in Oregon; the highest above sea level (the cliff top location is 245 feet above sea level; the conical tower is similar to Yaquina Head, but rises just 59 feet); and Oregon's first woman keeper, Mabel F. Bretherton, signed on in 1903.
 Cape Blanco's history is full of shipwrecks and lives saved. One notable shipwreck was of the J. A. Chanslor (an oil tanker) in 1919. Of the 30 passengers, only three survived the collision with an offshore rock.

Langlois

 Langlois is located near Floras Creek, a well-known stream in the north end of the county, flowing into the Pacific Ocean, some six miles north of Cape Blanco. A dairyman's trade town, the place was named for the Langlois family which had for many years been prominent in Curry County. William V. Langlois was born on the Island of Guernsey, English Channel, and came to Curry County in 1854. His wife was Mary A. King.
 In the early days two cooperages plants supplied nearby towns with tubs for preserving fish. Later two sawmills appeared and are still operating.
 Langlois post office was established April 4, 1881, with Frank M. Langlois first postmaster. The name of the post office was changed to Denmark on March 28, 1882, and the Langlois office was reestablished on July 21, 1887.
 A number of their children have been prominent in Curry County affairs. Their son, James Langlois, and James Hughes were Cape Blanco's most distinguished lightkeepers.
 Hughes was the second son of Jane and Patrick Hughes, whose 2,000 acre ranch bordered the Light Station property.

Cape Blanco Catholic Church

  Over lupine-covered hills, in a thicket of rhododendrons and azaleas, are the ruins of Cape Blanco Catholic Church. Bats cling to the altar and the glass in the pointed window frames is shattered. By the walk is the flower-matted grave of Patrick Hughes, founder of the parish and builder of the church.

Sunset to Sunrise

 Both men served at Cape Blanco, Langlois 42 years and Hughes at least 33 years. Their job included keeping the light working from sunset to sunrise. Langlois and Hughes, along with many others, diligently kept the lamps clean, and the huge Fresnel lens polished.
 The original Cape Blanco lens was a first order, fixed, Fresnel lens (non-rotating). The lens probably had drum-shaped panels to provide the steady beam of white light that was Cape Blanco's signal, according to the 1900 Light List (Light Lists were published so mariners could identify the lights and their signals).
 Sometime after the 1911 Light List was published, Cape Blanco's signal changed. The new signal provided flashes of light, instead of a steady beam. The change was accomplished by using a clockwork system that lowered a shield around the light source at intervals to provide the flash. This change added "winding the clockworks" the keepers list of duties.
 In late 1935, or early 1936, the lighthouse was electrified and the actual lens was replaced with an eight-sided, rotating new lens in France by Henry LePaute. The new lens coupled with the speed as it turned, provided a flash of light every 20 seconds.
 The second lens is listed on various light lists as both a first order and a second order lens, "orders" being a size classification. Cape Blanco's lens measures 4' 8" in diameter and 6' 8" tall. It is larger than a second order (4' 7" by 6' 10") lens. We do not know what happened to the original lens after it was shipped to the Tongue Point Depot by way of the steamer Manzanita.
 A 1,000 watt incandescent bulb, replaces Cape Blanco's soot-producing oil lamps of old. Gone are the keepers who spent hours polishing the magnificent lens and winding the clockworks. Today, it rotates with the help of a 120 volt, 75 RPM electric motor, specially manufactured for lighthouse duty. The electrified light flashes its 230,000 candlepower beam 1.8 seconds bright (flash) every 18.2 seconds.

Sea Otters

  A colony of sea otters, peering out from above the whitecaps about 200 yards offshore, can be sighted down on the beach below Cape Blanco. The progenitors of this colony were transported here courtesy of the Atomic Energy Commission in 1970. At that time, a planned bomb test in the Aleutians compelled the AEC to move 95 of these animals to this area. In addition to Cape Blanco, they've been sighted south of Port Orford.
 Between 1775 and 1823, over 100,000 sea otters were killed for their pelts, many along the Oregon Coast. They became the frivolous trappings of royalty, selling in Paris for as much as $1,000 a piece. After sea otters were declared extinct south of the Aleutians in 1911, they became a protected species.
 The first accounts of the plunder of the sea otter should have brought about their protection long before the 20th century. An early as 19th Century Spanish journal described the colony off Monterey, California as playful and intelligent. It detailed how a typical otter would dive hundreds of feet down to pull an abalone off a rock; would reemerge on the surface on its back, shell in paw; and then, using its belly for a table, would crack the shell open with a rock.
 In addition to the Spanish chronicler's fascination with otter dining behavior, he noted another human-like trait when a mother sea otter was observed putting her infant in a cradle of kelp. The account went on to describe the mother's reaction upon returning with food and finding her offspring missing; she emitted human-like cries of grief for days on end, eventually starving herself to death.

Port Orford

 Situated on a craggy marine terrace above a protected harbor, Port Orford, located 54 miles north of the California-Oregon state line, is the westernmost incorporated city in the continuous US. In recent years this rambling village has suffered the same financial woes that have befallen many coastal communities, whose economies have depended primarily upon timber and commercial fishing. Port Orford has been slower than most to recover.
 Port Orford's harbor is a coastal cove, not an estuary, so vessels have no river bar to cross. In calm weather come commercial boats, sport craft, and sailing vessels anchor in the scenic cove. Most boats, however, rest in unusual berths at this unique waterfront; there are no customary docks, floats, or moorage slips. Instead, boats are cradled on rubber-tired dollies atop a large wharf and are launched and retrieved by a hoist capable of handling vessels up to 42 feet long and weighing up to 26,000 pounds.
 Depending on the time of the year, commercial boats return to port with catches of salmon, black cod (sable fish), bottom fish, shrimp, or crab. Recently Port Orford has also become the center of Oregon's sea urchin fishery.
 In the timber world the Port Orford vicinity is well known for a beautiful tree bearing the same name. Port Orford cedar is an aromatic, straight-grained tree, native to a small local range. The durable wood has seen a number of uses over the years, from Indians' canoes and dwellings to battery separators, venetian-blind slats, house siding, and decking.
 The tree's beauty, ironically, may lead to its eventual extinction. The attractive cedars have been cultured in nurseries and used as ornamentals for more than 65 years. A root fungus, once confined to nurseries, has now spread to the forests and is attacking trees throughout their range. Only the discovery of a way to combat the spreading fungus will save the rest of these exquisite trees from extinction.

Captain William V. Tichenor 1851

 Capt. William V. Tichenor, who founded the town of Port Orford in 1851, was born at Newark, New Jersey, in 1813. In 1843 he settled in Illinois and in 1848 was elected state senator from Edgar County. In 1849 he started for California and engaged in the sea trade. In 1851 he commanded the steamer Sea Gull, one of the first in the San Francisco-Columbia River trade. He lost the steamer at Humbolt Bay on January 22, 1852, but saved the lives of all on board and was given a gold watch for heroism. He brought is family there the following May. He gave up sea life in 1868 and settled down at his home in Port Orford. He died in San Francisco July 28, 1887, and was buried in the family cemetery at Port Orford. He was a public spirited and highly respected citizen of Southwest Oregon.
 In June 1851, Tichenor endeavored to establish a commercial enterprise at Port Orford. He engaged J. M. Kirkpatrick and a number of others to go to Port Orford where the party was landed and provisioned on what is now known as Battle Rock. The party was besieged by Indians and an actual battle was fought on June 10, 1851, at which time 17 Coquille were killed, mostly by fire from a small cannon. Kirkpatrick and his party finally succeeded in stealing away from the rock after several days' siege and made their way north along the coast until they reached settlements of the whites. When Tichenor's representative returned by sea he found the contingent gone and assumed it had been killed by the Indians.
 Robert H. Ruby and John A. Brown reflected on the incident:

 Along the Southern Oregon Coast the confrontations continued. At dawn on June 10, 1851, Indians gathered for a war dance to ready themselves to challenge party of whites who had landed with cannon the previous day at Battle Rock at Port Orford. The whites were from the ship Sea Gull, under Captain William V. Tichenor. They had come to lay out a townsite and search eastward through the Coast Range. After the ship sailed off, the Indians attacked those who had disembarked, firing arrows at them on the rocks. Most of the missiles passed over the heads of the settlers. The Indians then rushed the rocky beachhead on which the tiny party held its ground. After a brief skirmish, in which 20 Coquille were reported killed, the Indians retreated to plan a counterattack. Some days later they returned, reinforced in numbers and harangue from Chief John, they broke into a prolonged yell and then swarmed down the bank, across the beach and up a narrow path to the driftwood breastworks. The whites fired their cannon into the breastworks, forcing the natives to retreat. From behind the rocks and trees the Indians arched their arrows into Battle Rock. During the night the whites stole away, eventually reaching Willamette River.

Battle Rock Myth Exposed 1997

 Some of the signs at Oregon state parks are wrong. At Port Orford, a historical marker at Battle Rock tells of “heroic” non-indian squatters fending off a vicious Indian attack. Louis A. McArthur (1883-1951) perpetuates the myth:

 Battle Rock is at the shoreline of Port Orford and is a massive black of rock standing well above the water. In June 1851, Captain William V. Tichenor, who commanded the steamer, Sea Gull, operating between the Columbia and San Francisco, endeavored to establish a commercial enterprise at Port Orford. His party was besieged by Indians and an actual battle was fought on June 10, 1851, at which time 17 Indians were killed, mostly by fire from a small cannon.

 It didn't happen that way, according to records recently uncovered by University of Oregon students at the Smithsonian Institution and the National Archives in Washington DC.
 More than 60,000 forgotten government papers were unearthed as part of the Southwestern Oregon Research Project (SWORP) begun in 1995 by George Wasson, a University of Oregon graduate student in anthropology. The project was a cooperative venture between the Coquille Nation, the University of Oregon, and the Smithsonian.
 Wasson, a Coquille, had hoped to find confirmation of an oral tribal history that was quite different from the written history of the tribe's first meeting with whites. Joined by fellow University of Oregon students and Coquille tribal members Denni Mitchell, Jason Younker, and Shirod Younker, Wasson examined government records, maps, treaties, letters, and diaries of enlisted soldiers and government agents.
 What they found confirmed tribal tales of brutal treatment by white gold diggers and land grabbers on the Oregon Coast. "The history books tell a different story than what is passed down from your elders," says Jason Younker, a graduate student in archaeology. “We went to Washington DC to confirm what we knew in our hearts.”
 Their first order of business was to obtain copies of the documents and donate them to the University of Oregon Knight Library, where they will be available to scholars and historians.
 Further copies were also presented to leaders of six coastal tribes at a "potlatch," or Indian gift-giving ceremony, during the Indian literature conference at the University of Oregon this past spring. The potlatch was the largest gathering of coastal tribes in more than 150 years.
 The Southwestern Oregon Research Project uncovered more than anyone expected, but researchers agree that there is much more hidden in the boxes and microfilm in Washington—particularly concerning events after the federal government forced the tribes onto a reservation at Yachats in the mid-1880s.
 The original project didn't cover the reservation years, says Steadman Upham, University of Oregon vice provost for research and dean of the University of Oregon Graduate School. "The University is very open to extending SWORP to document that important period in Northwest history."
 And the historical marker at Port Orford? It's being changed.

Prehistoric Rain Garden

 Midway between historic Port Orford and Gold Beach is the Prehistoric Rain Garden, one of the most unusual attractions in the world. This is the rain forest that recreated a world of lifesize replicas of dinosaurs and other prehistoric animals among profusely growing, primitive plants. One is transported back in time by strolling among the luxuriant ferns and moss covered trees and following the weird forms of animal life that disappeared from the earth over 70 million years ago.
 Rain forests are located in small coastal valley pockets, surrounded by hills, and protected from fierce winter storms. The climate must be mild, few winds, rich soil, and exceptionally heavy rainfall (six to ten feet per year). This brings about the super growing, giant, lush undercover of skunk cabbages with elephant ear tropical leaves, trees that live for hundreds of years, and innumerable mosses and ferns cascading from the trees. Rain forests range from Northern California to British Columbia but few are accessible on a main highway as is this one.

Ophir

 About 16 miles south of Port Orford is the little town of Ophir, situated on US-101, just south of the mouth of Euchre Creek.
 Euchre Creek takes its name from the Tututni band Yukicketunne. The name indicates "people at the mouth of the river." The Handbook of American Indians, among others, gives the following forms of the name: Euchees, Eucher, Euchre, Eu-qua-chee, Euchres and Yoquichacs. George Davidson, in the Coast Pilot, refers to the stream as Ukah Creek for the U-kahtan-nae tribe. Miners applied the corruption Euchre Creek in the early 1850s, apparently influenced by the name of an historic card game played nearby by cowboys in pioneer days. Developed in 1841, euchre is a card game in which each player is dealt five cards and the player making trump must take three tricks to win a hand. Euchre Butte in Lake County, a prominent mountain north of Lake Abert, is also said to have been so named because of the game. Davidson says that the Euchre Creek was also called Savage Creek, but the name is not explained and has not persisted.
 Accurate information about the name of Euchre Mountain seems hard to obtain, but it is generally believed that the word “euchre” was also used by pioneer surveyors as a approximation of the Indian name of the “mountain.” Perhaps it was a skookum place. The USGS gives the height of Euchre Mountain as 2,452 feet. The late Robert L. Benson suggested to in 1977 that the name might be another of the transplanted names that accompanied the Southern Oregon Indians exiled to the Grand Ronde and Siletz reservations. In the old cowboy card game, the player who is euchred is prevented from winning three tricks, and the word gradually took on the meaning of "trick" and "cheat" By way of extension, the Southern Oregon Indians were definitely euchred out of their land and culture.

The Euchring of Euchre Bill

 The euchring of Euchre Bill further illustrates this intriguing play on words, brought on by a careless Caucasian corruption.
 Indian juries, who were selected by agents to assist the Indians often sent to the Skookum House, or jail, Indians violating their own traditional codes or those that the agents sought for them. One graphic example of differing Indian-white codes sending a red offender to the place of incarceration occurred on the Siletz Reservation: overreacting to the sanguine admission of Euchre Bill that he had eaten the heart of a fallen white foe, the agent physically assaulted him before confinement. From agents, Indians received more orthodox punishment in the form of whipping—the practice employed by fur traders and even missionaries.

Ophir: The Source of Fine Gold

 Ophir post office, named for a mysterious region in Southern Arabia from whence the products of India were brought to the West, was established on June 5, 1891, with Elizabeth J. Burrow first postmaster. The name calls attention to the gold-bearing black sands of the Southern Oregon Coast.
 A region celebrated for its proverbially fine gold and almug trees, Ophir first appears in historical narrative during the United Monarchy as the source of the 3,000 talents of fine gold left by David for the temple (I Chr. 29:4). It was also the place from which a fleet of ships, built by Solomon at Ezion-geber and manned by Phoenicians and Israelites, brought 420 talents of gold, silver, almug trees, precious stones, ivory, and two kinds of monkeys to Israel (I Kings 9:28; 10:11=II Chr. 8:18; 9:10).
 In the ninth century, Jehoshaphat attempted to duplicate Solomon's expeditions to Ophir, but his ships were broken up at Ezion-geber before setting sail (I Kings 22:48—H 22:49).
 Ophir is also mentioned in an inscription on a shard found at Tell Qasileh, probably biblical Aphek. The inscription, which is attributed to the 8th Century BC, reads: "Gold of Ophir for [or belonging to] Beth-horon, 30 shekels." This is the first nonbiblical mention of Ophir discovered to date.
 The fame of Ophir's gold is also mentioned in poetic and prophetic passages as a symbol of greatest opulence (Job 22:24; 28:16; Ps. 45:9—H 45:10; Isa. 13:12).
 The location of Ophir has been much disputed; it has been variously placed in India, Arabia, and Africa.
 The region of Somaliland, with a possible extension to the neighboring coast of Southern Arabia, is the most probable identification of Ophir as yet proposed. The products of Ophir (I Kings 9:28; 10:11) are the same as those of the Egyptian Punt, and included such characteristic African products as gold, silver, ivory, and two kinds of monkeys. it is likely that Ophir and Punt were in the same general Egyptian reliefs which portray an African culture and environment and list imported products such as myrrh trees, which in Africa grow only in this region. Thus it is quite probable that Ophir was in this same region.
 The voyage to Ophir is said to have required three years, which probably meant one full year and parts of two others, according to Semitic reckoning. The fleet would leave Ezion-geber in the late autumn of one year, call at Ophir and possibly other ports en route as well during the second year, and return to Ezion-geber in the spring of the third year. Such voyages to a region no more distant than Ophir were quite possible, since we have numerous records of Egyptian voyages to Punt from the Fifth Dynasty through the period of the New Kingdom.

Gold Beach

 We pass through rugged headlands and bluffs rising straight from the seas as we drive back from Brookings to Gold Beach. This is the home of some of the most rugged and wild of Oregon's coastal scenery. The road dips and climbs and curves and climbs again... We glimpse a small group of sea lions frolicking in their habitat, and enjoy the salty fragrance of the ocean, the cool breeze, and surf-washed coastline. Wynne Gibson


Gold Beach on the Oregon Coast
Photo Courtesy of Julie Hendricks

 Gold Beach, a picturesque village at the mouth of Rouge River, was once a crossroads of a sort. Orientals, Indians and adventurers gathered at the log cabin saloon that was also the county courthouse in the 1850 when gold was discovered in the sands of Curry County beaches. They were the scene of operations of hundreds of placer miners in pioneer days. Floodwaters swept the beach clean of gold in 1861, though upstream mining continued for years.
 This particular beach was at the mouth of Rogue River, and the settlement there was for some years known as Ellensburg, but it is said that there was confusion with Ellensburg, in Washington Territory, and the name was changed to Gold Beach. The name Ellensburg was derived from Sarah Ellen Tichenor, daughter of Capt. W. V. Tichenor.
 H. H. Bancroft and Frances Fuller Victor both refer to the fact that the settlement at the mouth of Rogue River was once known as Whaleshead, but some say that is a mistake. What is now known as Whaleshead Island is some distance south of Gold Beach. Sebastopol was also one of the early names for the place.
 In the 19th Century, trappers, miners, and homesteaders came to the Rogue, followed by loggers and ranchers. Although they ultimately settled the land, they never tamed the river.
 If it weren't for the Rogue, Gold Beach would have disappeared as quickly as they found gold in its sands.
 Gold Beach post office was established March 25, 1890. Charles Dewey was first postmaster of this office, located on the south bank of Rogue River at its mouth.
 Mail boats started making the upstream trip to Agness in 1895, when it took several days of rowing to travel 32 miles upstream from Gold Beach; now, jet boats shoot upriver in tow hours.


Agness Post Office Built 1907
Photo Courtesy of Julie Hendricks


  The broad, uncrowded beaches, stretching north and south from the mouth of the Rogue, attract whale watchers, beachcombers, clam diggers, kite fliers, hikers, surf fishermen, and wind surfers—and prophets.
 In March 1997, Gold Beach, located 37 miles north of the California-Oregon state line, gained international recognition following the Heaven's Gate suicides in Southern California:

Some followers of Heaven's Gate embarked on a bus trip to Santa Rosa, California, and to Gold Beach, Oregon, the place where cult leader Marshall Applewhite first found his calling in the wilderness. They continued on to Ashland, Oregon, and Sacramento, California, running up more than $2,000 in hotel bills.

There's Gold in Them Thar Hills

 Geologists estimate that the prospectors of the 1850s and commercial mining operations that followed found only 25 percent of Oregon's potential take. With the wild gyrations of the timber-dependent economy, and gold fetching several hundred dollars a troy ounce, it's not wonder that many out-of-work loggers and other people have taken to gold panning in the waterways of Southern Oregon.
 Almost all streams in Coos, Curry, Douglas, and Jackson counties are good sources of color. "Color" referred to the flecks and bright chips of metal sometimes called gold dust; larger odd-shaped lumps of gold are nuggets. The gold originally comes from veins in the mountains, where it is washed out by winter whether. Spring floods and heavy rains carry the gold downstream. The density of gold causes it to settle in obstructions (like moss), in quiet water behind boulders, or at the base of waterfalls. These deposits of gold can vary from fine gold flecks to a bonanza of nuggets.

Samuel H. Boardman State Park

 Samuel H. Boardman (1874-1953) was no park builder, but he personally carried out the acquisition of nearly 56,000 acres of Oregon park land in the 1930s and 1940s.
 Boardman was born in Lowell, Massachusetts, and for some years followed the construction and engineering business. In 1903, while stationed at Leadville, Colorado, he became interested in the Pacific Northwest and came to Oregon. He got a job with A. M. Drake at Bend, but on the way to Central Oregon, he ran into smallpox at Shaniko, and lost interest in the Deschutes country. He returned to Portland, and in the same year he filed on a homestead where the town of Boardman is now situated. For 13 years the Boardmans snuffed sand and worked to develop irrigated land. At odd times he was engaged in railroad and highway construction and his Spouse taught school to help with the expenses. The town of Boardman was platted in 1916. S. H. Boardman was continually interested in the phenomena of nature, and as a result of employment by the Oregon State Highway Department in 1916, he put his attention to roadside improvement and state park development.
 As Oregon’s first state park engineer, Boardman delegated much of the day-to-day administration of his agency so he could concentrate on negotiating for land to build up the parks system. Under his administration, Oregon park acreage went from 4,000 to nearly 60,000. In many cases, Boardman was able to persuade land owners to donate their property to the parks department. Locally, these negotiations resulted in parks or waysides at the Devil's Punch Bowl, South Beach, Otter Crest, Yachats and Newport. Despite his accomplishments, he probably would have been insulted if someone had called him a park builder.
 Boardman was actually anti-park, at least in the way most of us think when we visit the state picnic areas and campgrounds that dot the Oregon Coast. He believed unquestionably that the honor of park builder belonged to god, or as he referred to his deity, "The Great Architect."
 Philosophically, Boardman was perhaps more in line with the modern-day Nature Conservancy. Instead of building campgrounds, Boardman believed that Oregon’s park department should be dedicated to acquiring land for preservation. He saw no need to build campsites complete with fire boxes and picnic tables because they would only detract from the work of the greatest park builder of all.
 Toward the end of his tenure, Boardman began to yield to pressure from the public and federal park agencies. Shortly after Boardman's 1950 retirement, the Oregon State Parks Department opened its first overnight campground at Silver Creek Falls.
 Boardman's position was assumed by his assistant, Chester H. Armstrong.
 When Armstrong assumed the reins of the parks department, the agency's resources were shifted from acquiring land for preservation to developing parks—most notably, campgrounds. Armstrong surveyed all of Oregon’s park land for its potential and in 1952 built 27 campgrounds, ranging in size from four to 15 sites. They were widely popular with the leisure-seeking public. In the first year of operation, 44,112 campers stayed at the new campgrounds. The list of amenities at the early state campgrounds was quite short: a table, fire grate and community restrooms.
 After Boardman retired, he spent his days at the Park Division office writing the history of each of Oregon’s parks. In 1953, after completing the history of just 15 parks, he died.
 The parks department honored Boardman by giving his name to a very scenic coastal park in Curry County. Back in 1940, Boardman had unsuccessfully lobbied the National Parks Service for a National Recreation Area designation for this acreage.
 Perhaps honoring boardman's philosophy of park building and "the Great Architect," Samuel H. Boardman State Park has no campground. It is strictly a day-use facility.

Brookings-Harbor

 In the vicinity of Brookings, six miles north of the California-Oregon state line, the coastal plain narrows as the Pacific Ocean indents eastward, and the Coast Range mountains quickly slope to the sea. The result is a countryside of spectacular beauty, with rocky headlands intruding on great sweeps of beach where surf and wind and geological upheaval have created coves, caves, sea stacks, and vertigo-inducing promontories northward to Port Orford.


Oregon Coast Photos Courtesy of Julie Hendricks

 Situated on the ocean and along the north bank of Chetco River, Brookings is the southernmost incorporated city on the Oregon Coast. Harbor is the southernmost unincorporated community that stretches southward from the Chetco's south bank.
 Brookings was established about 1908 as a company town for the Brookings Lumber & Box Company. John E. Brookings was president and as chief executive officer lived on the Pacific Coast, while his cousin, Robert S. Brookings, provided the major financial support. R. S. Brookings lived in the east and devoted much of his time to semi-diplomatic missions and support of the arts. It was he who hired Bernard Maybeck, a San Francisco architect later involved in the Panama-Pacific Exposition, to lay out the townsite, certainly the only early plat in Oregon to receive the attention of such a qualified professional. Brookings post office was established January 4, 1913.
 The Port of Brookings-Harbor, one of the largest and safest commercial and sport fishing ports in Oregon, provides a variety of activities, including guide and charter service for river drift boat salmon and steelhead fishing, ocean salmon and bottom fishing, crabbing, clamming, and musseling.
 Among the cash crops here and in nearby Northern California are Easter lilies. In fact, a small group of local growers produces about 90 percent of the Easter lilies sold in the US and Canada, and an early summer drive between Brookings-Harbor and Crescent City offers a breathtaking view of fields of blooming lilies.
 Each Memorial Day weekend, the Azalea Festival is held in the 26-acre Azalea State Park. Acres of daffodils bloom in February and March, and in July the countryside is covered in blooming, fragrant Easter lilies.
 In December, the park is transformed into a winter wonderland with Nature's Coastal Highway Light Show and Sculpture Display.
 Brookings is the only spot in the continental US that was bombed by Japan in WWII. The bomb site is marked by a monument accessed from the Bonbsite Trail, located about ten miles inland from Brookings-Harbor on South Bank Road. The pilot of the plane returned to Brookings 20 years after the bombing during the annual Azalea Festival, and presented the town with his personal samurai sword. The sword, now on display at Brookings City Hall, had been carried in his plane for good luck.
 While Brookings is the only spot in the continental US that was directly bombed by the Japanese, the tiny Klamath County community of Bly was the only place on the American continent were someone died as the result of enemy action during the war. On May 5, 1945, a Japanese balloon carrying incendiary bombs, designed to start forest fires, malfunctioned and landed without detonating. It was disturbed by a picnic group and exploded killing a woman and five children. The authorities did not wish to inform the Japanese of their success and the news was suppressed for several months.

Oregon's Banana Belt

 The mildest climate on the coast gives Brookings-Harbor the name of Oregon's Banana Belt. The area's geology and a meteorological phenomenon known as the "Brookings effect" keep winter temperatures warmer here than anywhere else in Oregon. Ocean breezes temper the summer heat, making climate moderate, without the seasonal extremes encountered elsewhere.
 Loeb State Park, about eight miles up the north bank of Chetco River, has 320 acres of myrtle wood—found only in Oregon and the Middle East—and is home to Oregon's largest stand of coastal redwoods.
 The Kalmiopsis Wilderness Area, at 180,000 acres, is Oregon's largest wilderness. This rugged area, accessed by traveling up the north bank of the Chetco, is part of the Siskiyou National Forest.
 Named for the rare rhododendron-like Kalmiopsis leachiana, the wilderness is home to many rare and wonderful botanical specimens. Examples are the insect-eating Darlingtonia flycatcher plant, Brewer’s weeping spruce and the economically valued timber species, Port Orford cedar.
 Harbor post office is where the old office of Chetco was once situated. The Chetco office was in operation from March 3, 1863, until November 15, 1910, in various places, and at one time was near the mouth of the Chetco at the present site of harbor. Later it was moved southward several miles. When Harbor post office was established on November 24, 1894, the name Chetco could not be used because the Chetco office was then serving the locality near Winchuck River, not far north of the Oregon-California border. Augustus F. Miller served as first postmaster of the Chetco office, and it is reported that the new name was taken from the title of the Chetco Harbor Land & Townsite Company. Peter Costello was first postmaster of the Harbor office, which was designated a rural station of Brookings on June 30, 1958.

Harbor's Pioneer Citizen

 In 1983, lecturer, traveler, and writer Wynne Gibson was invited to visit Viola Hamscam, 91 years old and a resident of Harbor. She wrote:

 Viola is a woman of many firsts in her lifetime and she recently received another honor... Pioneer Citizen. One of her outstanding feats is her handmade rag rugs depicting her family's history. Seated in the livingroom of the home she and her husband built, a steaming cup of coffee in hand, this bright-eyed, enthusiastic woman proceeded to tell us of the famed rugs.
 "These rugs were made from used clothes of the Hamscam family. They are 35 inches long and 13 inches wide to fit the stairs in this house. The first rugs go back to 1911 when I left home to get married. It shows me leaving my parents’ home and traveling by foot and wagon to Grants Pass. Rug Two is of our homestead with bunkhouse, cookhouse and our two daughters. Rug Three adds our two sons, the store we opened in Kerby, our house and the schoolhouse. The Masonic Temple, Oddfellows Lodge, barbershop, and a new son are shown in Rug Four. Rug Five depicts the move to Fort Dick, California, in 1924. It put in redwood trees, the new store we opened, and our four sons. Rug Six follows our move to Harbor... the new store there and the row of cabins behind with the Chetco River along the top. The last rug, Seven, was done in 1961. It replaces the old store with the new one and the cabins are gone. Lifestyles changed considerably from the time I started the rugs until they were finished."
 "I understand these rugs were placed on display at the University of Oregon in Eugene, then to the Oregon Historical Society in Portland, and on to the Renwick Gallery at the Smithsonian Institute in Washington DC?" I queried.
 "Yes," Viola said, "I was very proud to have them selected for such an honor. They were returned from Washington DC, and hung in the Oregon State House in Salem, until July 1981, with the Webfoot, BunchGrassers Oregon Folk Art Gallery. They are now on display at the local Harbor Museum."
 Viola still finds time to keep current the family's photo album collection, raise a large vegetable and flower garden, babysit great grandchildren, and serve on the board of directors for the Curry County Historical Society. She has an "open door" to all who are interested in her lifetime of living projects and Southern Oregon Coast history.

Chapter 23: Toledo

 Toledo Precinct is bounded on the north by the line between Benton and Tillamook counties, on the south by Tidewater Precinct, on the east by Elk City Precinct and on the west by Yaquina Precinct, it being about 15 miles long and four miles wide. It includes the Yaquina River from the north of Mill Creek to where it enters Yaquina Bay, its general course being west, while it is very crooked, making long sweeps to pass several ridges that run across its general course. The tide flats are much wider than on the Bay, while land suitable for cultivation is more extensive. The hills are low and almost denuded of green timber, and farming and stock-raising is very extensively carried on.


(1) Downtown Toledo 1906 (2) Men of Toledo 1890
Photographs from Lords of Themselves: A History of Eastern Lincoln County, Oregon 1978

 The Siletz Reservation, partly in Tillamook and partly in Benton counties, has its southern portion and agency building within the confines of Toledo Precinct. This section is a beautiful open level situated on the north bank of the Siletz River, and has been in cultivation ever since its occupation as an Indian Reservation, some 27 years ago. Three or four miles south of the agency the country is rough and timber clad. The northern part of the precinct, including the heads of Depot and Olalla sloughs, are thickly timbered, while it is from here that the chief supply of the Yaquina trade will be obtained. Many have come to and gone away from the Yaquina country by the usually traveled routes but have not had the faintest idea that so large and valuable a tract of green timber existed within easy access of the bay. A short distance above the mouth of the Yaquina, Boone Slough puts in from the north, tapping both this and Yaquina Precinct, and along whose banks is a large amount of level country, chiefly utilized for grazing purposes. Here also, on an island of considerable size is the remains of a once splendid grove of trees. About two miles farther up, but on the same side of the river is Depot Slough, and half a mile beyond we have Olalla Slough. Along both of these, and on Beaver Slough as well, which joins Depot Slough from the west, are wide bottoms, all mostly taken up, however, and under cultivation. Opposite the mouth of the water-course last named are some gently rolling lands, the property of William Mackey and Henry P. Butler (1826-1893), on which are valuable improvements, the whole being in good state of cultivation. Mill Creek comes in from the south, marking the eastern boundary of the precinct, where also are some fine lands. The whole of the land lying on the river is taken and a considerable portion has been brought into cultivation.
 To the south of the Yaquina, the country becomes rough and mountainous, the hills increasing in altitude until Table Mountain is reached, which marks the division between the watershed of the Yaquina and that of the Alsea River, and forming a prominent landmark at sea as has been mentioned in the survey of A. W. Chase.
 The population of Toledo Precinct is about 400, the available country being thickly settled. The people are industrious and enterprising, the farms being well improved and wearing an appearance of neatness and thrift, thanks to a good soil that well remunerates the farmer for his labor. Stock-raising receives considerable attention but like all other portions of the coast country, nothing like what its capabilities would warrant. A few hogs are raised almost everywhere, but not more than can be used for home consumption. As there are no flouring mills in the district there has been no attempt to cultivate wheat beyond as a simple experiment, but there is no doubt but that when the demand arises it will be profitably produced. Oats is grown and does well, as do all tubers and vegetables, while it is thought that were there a demand for sugar beets, they could be matured to an almost unlimited extent. The prosperity for almost all kinds of fruit, except peaches, are good, many of the orchards being full of promise. There are two sawmills in the precinct that have been chiefly engaged in supplying the Oregon Pacific Railroad Company with lumber.
 The first settlement within the present boundaries of Toledo Precinct was made by George R. Meggison, who located on Depot Slough (then Siletz Slough) in January 1866. About the same time came John Graham (1805-1883), who took up the claim on which the town of Toledo stands, while Bill Mackey located on the opposite side of the bay, at his present place. Then, William Dundon (1826-1902) settled on Depot Slough, and that same year H. P. Butler, who still owns his original claim; R. Noah Baker (1857-1938), on the "Briggs Place;" N. James Leabo (1838-1908) on that adjoining the last named; and Robert Hill, on the place now the property owned by Charles E. Montgomery (1859-1899).
 In 1868, a school was opened in the precinct in a building now vacant, while the first post office was in the premises of Bill Mackey, subsequently in that of H. P. Butler, and afterwards to its present locality—Toledo.

Toledo Settlement

 The town of Toledo is situated on the east bank of Depot Slough, near its mouth, and is accessible to all vessels that can now cross the bar at the mouth of Yaquina Bay. It was laid out by John Graham in the year that the post office was there established. It is located on the line of the Willamette Valley & Coast Railroad, 12 miles east of Yaquina City and comprises one hotel, two stores, one saloon, a feed stable, a blacksmith's shop and post office.

Depot Slough

 Depot Slough empties into the Yaquina at Toledo, and derived its name from the fact of the depot for supplying the Siletz Reservation being located on its banks. About 18 years ago a sawmill was built here by G. R. Meggison, and subsequently a like enterprise was started by the railway company.


Caledonia

 Caledonia, so called after the name given to Scotland by the Gauls, was first located January 1, 1885, and is situated at the junction of the Caledonia (Olalla) River with the Yaquina. It was laid out in 1885 by Henry Wilkinson Vincent (1827-1922) on the claim of William Stevens, while so favorable is the side considered that town lots have found a ready sale. During the spring a hotel and store was started as well as the Charles Logsden Sawmill. Caledonia was beautifully located and placed upon the county road.
 Vincent was born in Watertown, New York, April 1, 1832. In 1851, he moved to Ripon, Wisconsin, and married Judith D. Stevens (1835-1903), a native of Gouldsborough, Maine. The couple had three children: Frank, Fred and Georgia (1871-1948). In July 3, 1874, the Vincents arrived in Benton County, and first located in Corvallis.
 Another early settler, George S. Briggs, who owned a large fruit orchard in Caledonia, was originally from Medina County, Ohio. He was born October 27, 1834. His parents moved to Racine County, Wisconsin when he was two years old. The family remained there until 1850 when the moved to Fayette Company, Iowa. Briggs enlisted in Company F, 9th Vet. of Iowa, February 28, 1864 and served until June 1865. He returned to his home in Iowa and migrated to Portland, Oregon in 1870. In 1876, he moved to Yaquina Bay and purchased his 390 acre farm, on which he had an orchard of over 6,000 trees, 4,000 of which were Italian Prunes. Joseph Thompson, a printer, also settled at Caledonia. Thompson was born in Huntington County, (Blair County) Pennsylvania, in 1832, where he resided until 1852. In the spring of that year, Thompson joined the Morrison Train at Dubuque, Iowa, and crossed the plains to Oregon. When the party reached Tule (Modoc) Lake in Southern Oregon, they were surprised by 150 Modoc, and after a desperate fight, which resulted in the loss of three lives and injuries to Thompson, they were finally rescued by a party from Yreka. Upon his arrival at Yreka, Thompson began mining.


Modocs Captain Jack, Boston Charlie and Scarfaced Charlie

He then went to Sacramento and San Francisco where he worked as a printer, and at one time published a paper at Nevada City. While living in Nevada City, Thompson married Mary V. Herbert. The Thompsons were the parents of five children: Morris, Daisy, Joseph II, Lillie and Harriet. In 1869, he migrated to Yaquina Bay, and homesteaded 160 acres adjoining the new town of Caledonia. However, he spent most of his time in Portland working on daily papers.
 Located near Toledo, Caledonia was probably named for the Caledonian Canal dividing the Grampian Mountains from the West Highlands in Scotland. The canal connects the North Sea with the Atlantic Ocean. The Caledonia Hills between Portage and Baraboo, Wisconsin, are part of the circular Baraboo Range around which the Wisconsin River flows. Briggsville is about eight miles northwest of Portage, and may be named for the Briggs family that migrated to Yaquina Bay. Caledonia, Wisconsin, an unincorporated village about six miles northwest of Racine on Root River and about eight miles south or Milwaukee, is an agricultural region. Famous Portage historian Frederick J. Turner (1861-1932) noted "the large number of Scots at Caledonia." Apple Holler in Sturtevant, Wisconsin, features over 50 acres of 16 different varieties of apples. This farm hosts tours of its orchard and cider mill.
 Caledonia is the Latin word for Scotland, and there are numerous Scottish settlements throughout north America that bear that name. Euro-Americans in the new country followed the land, and the formation of the land. They settled on the kind of land where they thought they would find happiness and prosperity. In the hills, the hill people of Norway, Switzerland, Wales, Germany, Scotland and other far countries tended to settle, and they called the places New Glarus, Wales, Berlin, Vienna, New Holstein and Caledonia. Caledonia, Columbia County, Wisconsin, was named by Scottish settlers. It was probably named by the McDonald brothers who settled there in 1836. Caledonia, Tremplealeau County, Wisconsin, was named by Alexander and Donald McGilvray and other Scottish settlers, Caledonia, Racine County, Wisconsin, was named for Scottish settlers. This area also had Welsh, Irish, Bohemian, and German settlements. Other Caledonia settlements in the New World include Caledonia, Ontario, Canada (pop. 3,183); Caledonia, Minnesota (population 2,619); Caledonia, New York (population 2,327); Caledonia, Ohio (population 792); and Caledonia County, Vermont (pop. 22,789).

West Yaquina

 West Yaquina was on the south bank of the Yaquina River, almost directly across from Yaquina City, a railroad boom town of the 1880s.
 The settlement was named for the Yaquina, a small tribe of the Yakonan family, formerly living about Yaquina Bay. Hale gives the the name as Iakon and Yakone, in Ethnology and Philology, 1846; Lewis and Clark give Youikeones and Youkone; Wilkes' Western America, 1849, gives Yacone. Another form of the word is Acona.
 Yaquina John Point, on the south side of the entrance to Alsea Bay just southwest of Waldport, was named for Yaquina John, a chief or councillor of the Yaquina, who lived in the vicinity of Alsea Bay. Yahal was a Yaquina Village on the north side of the Yaquina.
 Though Yaquina City has been called a lost city, most local people know how to get there—by driving three miles southeast of Newport up Yaquina Bay Road to Sawyers Landing. Yaquina City at least left a paper trail. A post office operated there from July 14, 1868, to July 31, 1961. William Wallace Carr served as first postmaster. Carr, and his brother, Sumner, were born in Ohio in 1840.
 West Yaquina is a lost city too, though it really was nothing more than a settlement.
 Sometime during the railroad boom of the 1880s, a plat map for West Yaquina was filed at the county courthouse (then in Corvallis). It shows a perfectly planned rectangular settlement with 40 blocks of lots and eleven streets running east-west that intersect three north-south streets: Granville, Collins and Emery.
 Early property ownership maps indicate Sam Case, founder of Newport, was probably West Yaquina's owner and developer. Case's West Yaquina vision of grandeur never materialized. His village shows up in the distant background of a photo taken around 1890 as four or five buildings that appear to be houses.
 What was the reason for West Yaquina's existence? What did potential lot buyers see in its future? It may have been the location of a salmon cannery. In March 1888 Thomas Culbertson and James Scott announced their intention to construct a cannery at West Yaquina. Whether or not it was ever built is not known.

Toledo Defeats West Yaquina

 One reason for West Yaquina's descent into obscurity may have been its loss of the county seat to Toledo in the 1896 election.
 In May 1895, Pres. Grover Cleveland (1837-1908) signed the bill opening the Siletz Reservation. This would have a decisive effect on the early history of Toledo.
 For Toledo simultaneously was locked in a battle with the town of West Yaquina for the county seat.
 West Yaquina no longer exists; it is possible Toledo would have met the same fate if it had lost hold of the seat. The first election came up in June 1894, and it was a relatively calm affair. The Lincoln County Leader said nothing on the matter until two weeks beforehand, when it came out with a dispassionate, but large piece on the reasons to vote for Toledo. Geographic proximity to the rest of the county, good roads, and the cost of moving the seat were listed prominently. Also given space was the argument that the prospective opening of the reservation would move even more people into the Toledo area. In any case, the editor was confident that no city would get a majority with Newport and Elk City also in the race. He was right; votes split geographically and West Yaquina garnered only 41 percent of the vote to Toledo's 32 percent.
 The final vote between the two cities two years later was much more lively. West Yaquina apparently got the first blow in April 1896, as the Leader responded with a big front-page article, "Something About Rings." John F. Stewart (1865-1917) writes:

One of the stock arguments kept on hand and constantly in use by those opposed to Toledo for county seat is that there is a "ring" at Toledo which they want to tear down.

Yet they do not say who runs this "ring" or who composes it, he complains:

If by the wholesale charge of "ring" it is meant that the people of Toledo work together and pull together for the common good, then we plead guilty and ask no mercy. There is such a "ring" in Toledo.

Only one Toledo resident had yet held county office, he states, and only two have been nominated for this election. Stewart then turns on West Yaquina:

This “ring” is not backed in their fight for the county seat by any foreign capitalist, town lot boomer, national banker, nor even a busted banker, but is making a clean, honorable fight for it.

This theme is developed much more fully the next week in "Has Lincoln County a County Seat for Sale?" Stewart acknowledges the common talk that outside interests are trying to influence the election with money, and he then writes:

 Are the citizens and taxpayers of the grand young county of Lincoln ready to let the town let speculators, the national bankers, and the coterie of speculating shylocks come into our community and debauch an election; to defeat the will of the people with money; to upset and defeat the will of the people in order that their town lots that they have bought for speculation may be enhanced in value and thus bring dollars to their pockets? Can the bankers and speculators twist and wind the people of the county to their own use and benefit by their brazen check and dollars?
 We do not believe they can.

  Things quieted down in the month before the election. The harshest the Leader got was to proclaim "Keep it fairly before the people—Boodle boon town lots and high taxes means West Yaquina; home people and low taxes mean Toledo." On June 4th, the Leader calmly announced Toledo's "victory," also stating that the Indians had behaved very well in their first election. In the next week's Leader we are able to discover just how well the Indians had behaved. The election table showed Siletz precinct going 149 to 0 for Toledo (even the vote in Toledo precinct was only 163 to 11!). The final vote was 615 to 504. Clearly, Toledo won the county seat because of the timing of the reservation's closure. Even though Stewart made no comment on this fact, West Yaquina picked upon it and threatened to contest the election in order to get the Indian votes thrown out. The Leader responded with a threat of its own. Toledo, it said, had hired one of the best attorneys in the state and started investigating voters in other precincts. "The use of money can now be established," Stewart wrote, and

We do not hesitate to predict that if a contest is started that the county seat will remain at Toledo; but some persons who voted in Lincoln County on June 1, 1896, will come very near to the doors of the Oregon penitentiary.

West Yaquina quietly dropped the challenge.

Bushrod W. Wilson

 Bushrod W. Wilson, a popular resident and pioneer of Benton County, was actively involved in the Corvallis & Yaquina Bay Railroad. He was one of the original incorporators of the line, which had its terminus at West Yaquina, where he owned property, and held the positions of secretary as well as president.
 Wilson born in Columbia, Washington County, Main, July 18, 1824. In 1830, his parents moved to New Brunswick, Middlesex County, New Jersey, and resettled again in New York City in 1833. Ten years later, the Wilsons moved once more, to Kane County, Illinois.
 At 18, Wilson left home. Choosing a sea-faring life, he spent three years in the Northwest seas and off the coast of Alaska, and for eight years was among those "who go down to the sea in ships."
 In the meantime, gold was discovered in California, and Wilson joined the '49ers. Traveling around Cape Horn, he landed in San Francisco, July 3, 1850.
 He grew tired of the gold fields, and took the brig Reindeer to Oregon in October of that year, landing at the mouth of the Umpqua. In September, Wilson took up a claim in the Willamette Valley seven miles southwest from where the City of Corvallis now stands. The property was later owned by Henkle and Armstrong.
 A carpenter and contractor by trade, Wilson set up shop in Corvallis proper in 1837. He was the first to put a ferry boat on the Snake River, where the town of Lewiston, Idaho has grown up.
 Returning to Corvallis, Wilson spent his first winter in running a keel boat between that point and Oregon City, on the Willamette. He opened a warehouse and started a pork packing business which he ran until June 1864, when he was elected county clerk of Benton County.
 Civically minded, Wilson identified himself with the welfare of Corvallis, and strenuously maintained a strong and willing fight for public education, and 1853, he was county superintendent of Common Schools.

West Yaquina a Shipping Hub

 A short article dated March 16, 1911, from the Newport Signal indicates West Yaquina was a shipping hub for dairy products and produce grown in the Beaver Creek-Ona area of south county. From West Yaquina, good were floated across the river to Yaquina City and loaded onto Willamette Valley bound trains.
 Why didn't farmers simply bring their goods to Newport? The short answer is inadequate roads. As a bird flies, the distance between Newport and Ona was estimated at eight or nine miles, but the lack of roads made it seem much farther. In 1911, L. M. Commons of Ona claimed that due to a lack of roads, she had not visited Newport for two years.
 A 1906 map in the archives of the Oregon Coast History Center shows there were two "wagon roads" that went to West Yaquina. One originated on the beach where Moore Creek empties into the ocean, in the vicinity of the south end of the present-day Newport Airport. The second came from the south, perhaps originating at Ona. As it reached West Yaquina, it paralleled McCaffrey Slough.

Watering Holes and Brothels

 A few unconfirmed stories have circulated that West Yaquina was more than a transportation hub. Some have claimed it was a watering hole where residents of Yaquina went to drink and patronize its brothels.
 West Yaquina probably declined as transportation routes improved. Apparently there were a few houses (lacking running water and electricity) there as recently as the 1950s. At that time, they were accessible only by boat.
 There are just a few old-timers around who know anything about the long-gone settlement called West Yaquina. Perhaps even fewer people know where it was and how to get there today. Adventurous hikers and mountain bikers who have stumbled upon the site of West Yaquina reported only a few remnants of Sam Case's settlement remain today—trees planted in a row, the outline of a house or two. West Yaquina's story has yet to be written, but these few sources shed some light on its history.

South Yaquina

 South Yaquina, now a ghost town, was directly across the bay from Yaquina City, but this area apparently was never developed to the extent of its sister city to the north. Fagan is quoted as saying: South Yaquina is "a town that as yet has only its name to boast of," and did not have a post office. Yaquina Bay, Yaquina Station and Yaquina River which heads near the Benton-Lincoln county line, and flows into the bay, bear the name of the Yaquina. In the early days there was also a Yaquina City, was situated on the eastern side of Yaquina Bay, about four miles from its mouth and was the terminus of the Willamette Valley & Coast Railway, where the company had a large dock and two warehouses, and a great amount of material, giving employment to many workmen. There also was the Custom House presided over by Collins Van Cleve. The town consisted of Jacobs & Neugass' General Merchandise Store, a drugstore, meat market and hotel, the interests of the place being ably kept before the public by the Yaquina Post. The land on which the town was situated was owned by the railroad company who saw in it the future great city of the Northwest. Directly across the bay was South Yaquina, a town that had only its name to boast of.

Toledo 1866-1900

 The early years of Toledo will never be the subject of extended historical analysis. The development of this town and the area around it in the last third of the 19th Century does, however, present some interesting episodes and issues which are deserving of attention. That is the simple premise of this paper.
 Toledo now does not partake much of its early historical roots. The government transformed this town on the eastern shore of Yaquina Bay in 1917 by building the world's largest spruce factory in order to help the war effort. From then on the mill has loomed largest in the city's development (and landscape).
 The rugged individualist, C. D. Johnson, bought the mill after the war. His tenure saw the most significant single event in Toledo's history, the running out of town in 1925, or 35 Japanese laborers who had been brought in to work at the mill. The town continued to boom, and Georgia-Pacific Corporation bought the mill in 1952. Population in Lincoln County, however, was shifting, and Toledo lost the county seat later that decade. Increasingly dependent on one industry, Toledo has suffered much during the recent recession. The final blow came just this year, as Georgia-Pacific Corporation announced that it would be closing its main wood products operation.
 If we go back to the closing decade of the last century, however, the image of Toledo is one of unbounded optimism, even in hard times. It is this story, accompanied by the struggle to make the elusive image come true, that follows.
 First, though, a note on sources. Published accounts have very little information on Toledo, and documents are scant for the period, although I have not been able to examine the papers in the keynotes archives. The new museum in Toledo has a few records such as city council minutes, and the historical society in Newport has a few helpful pieces of information, but for my period I have had to rely mainly on newspapers. This has also been frustrating, as most of the old bay newspapers founded in the 1880s and 1890s apparently no longer exist. Reference is made to some of them in historical pieces written as late as the 1930s, though, so perhaps they have found an elusive hiding place.
 Two stalwart newspapers, however, still exist. The Corvallis Gazette provides invaluable information on the early bay up until about 1880. Either strongly Republican or temperance in orientation, it was very bullish on the subject of the bay and has as its local correspondent the prolific "Rialto." This was the pen name for Royal A. Bensell (1838-1921), author of the Civil War journals known as All Quiet on the Yamhill, and the most prominent citizen on the bay in the 19th Century. One of the first three squatters in the area, he made his claim very near to what is now Toledo and remained there for a few years before moving to Newport. The Gazette has many gaps, though, both in terms of papers that did not survive and in terms of the varied in the absences of Bensell. Newspaper coverage is extremely sparse for the 1880s, but in 1893 the Lincoln County Leader came out with its first issue. Celebrating the new county, the paper's for "all the news that is of interest to taxpayers," mainly in Toledo. The problem with the weekly Leader is that it often did not deem it necessary to discuss issues which everyone of importance in town had obviously already had a chance to sit around and chew the fat on. This means that we lack some very essential information needed to interpret certain episodes in Toledo, especially those involving conflict either within the town or between Toledo and other areas.
 The history of any locality, of course, should include not just what actually did happen, but also what could have happened, but did not. In Toledo's case, its early history was tied up in the development of the Yaquina Bay district. An examination of the possibilities, both actual and imagined, that this presented is where we must start. This requires looking at the bay as a whole, but always with Toledo in mind. As "Avalo" wrote in the Gazette as early as 1866, "that some point on the bay will, in time, rival Portland, is certain, and prudent men will make a selection soon."
 The Yaquina Bay region was closed to settlement from the creation of the Siletz Reservation in 1856 until the beginning of 1866. Soldiers and others who had been keeping order at the reservation during the Civil War had, however, already begun to settle in the region. Upon hearing the news that a 21 mile wide strip of reservation was now open (before even the resident Indian agent had been told), R. A. Bensell, J. S. Copeland (1834-1912) and G. R. Meggison made claims for land near the present site of Toledo at Depot Slough. New settlers came as far as Elk City on the military wagon road from Corvallis and took steamers to other areas of the bay.


(1) Elk City Bridge from On the Yaquina and Big Elk by Evelyn Parry
(2) Elk City Depot by Del Hodges
from Lords of Themselves: A History of Eastern Lincoln County, Oregon

 These squatters recognized the potentials of the Bay immediately and soon began clamoring for improvements. With a fine harbor close to inland agriculture, boosterism began quickly. The very first example of this was a letter written to the Gazette by David Newsome concerning the first Fourth of July at Yaquina. Already 300 whites were reported on the bay, and Newsome predicted great success for their area.

 As water, by an unchangeable law, seeks its level, just so, also, will commerce seek and flow through the most direct and available channel.

 From the beginning observers viewed Newport as the preeminent site of the bay, but probably the second greatest attraction were the Premier Steam Mills at Depot Slough. With parts built in San Francisco, Bensell, Copeland, and Meggison constructed a sawmill that "Rialto" (Bensell) extolled in 1869 as "universally acknowledged to be the most complete mill in Oregon." As early as June 1866, "Avalo" was pointing to the mill as a shining example of the success available to settlers on the bay:

I visited the Premier Sawmill on the Depot Slough and found one of the best steam sawmills in the state, sawing 7,000 and 8,000 feet per day; a lumber yard containing good saleable lumber; boats coming and going, loaded with lumber all the time. This is a lively place; some 15 hands employed.

 Reports of daily lumber production fluctuated from 6,000 to 10,000 feet over the next few years, with lumber selling for $15 per 1,000 board feet in 1867. In 1868, the schooner T. Starr King arrived at the mouth of the slough to pick up 140,000 feet of lumber. A 20 ton schooner was even being constructed at the mill in 1867. In 1869, the mill was employing five men and working 11 hours a day, although not without danger, for Meggison nearly lost his hand the next year. The mill spawned other activities, as a “magnificent ball” was held in "a spacious building near the sawmill" as early as August 1866. Premier Steam Mills’s success culminated in the siting of Millville in 1867, although not much ever came of the town.
 Perhaps the greatest wave of excitement to hit the bay in its early years was the discovery of coal. In considering this, it must be kept in mind that Lincoln County now produces about as much coal as Eugene.
 Yet on February 16, 1867, the Gazette published a letter from "Avalo" reporting a coal find half a mile below Oysterville. He commented:

From the evidence it is reasonable to suppose coal beds are scattered over a huge tract of the bay district, and that is a very short time, coal mining will become profitable business.

In fact, much of the coal turned out to be right around Premier Steam Mills. In 1919, Teresa Roper published an account of the discovery It very well may be fictional, but on the other hand, it may be based on authentic oral sources:

 "Hellow!"
 "'Low!"
 "Gitten any?"
 "Enough for dinner, maybe. Where yer been?"
 "Up to the sawmill—but 'taint runnin'."
 "Shut down?"
 "Shut up."
 "Smartie!"
 "Never mind yer talkin' over thar and mind yer hook; that, yer might have had that feller."
 "I'll get him yet." And the speaker, John Mackey, grabbed a small home-made hand let, and made a dive toward a large trout that was nibbling at the bait on his hook.
 "Look out, there," yelled Joe Graham, who was silently fishing a few feet away. But his warning came too late, for John, over-reaching himself, lunged head first into the clear cold waters of Depot Slough.
 Will Clark—the newcomer—made a dive for the seat of John's pants, but missing, sat down with a heavy thud on the wet mud bank, just in time to get the benefit of the flying spray kicked up by John's plunge.
 "There! See how you have riled the water and skeered all the fish away," said Joe with none too soft voice. "No more fishing in this spot now," and he drew in his line as John, with many a splutter and sneeze, waded out of the water and climbed the bank.
 Roars of laughter came from Will as he viewed his dripping companion, but he stopped suddenly and said:
 "Why, you got your fish!"
 "Didn't neither."
 "Wall, what's that in the net, then?"
 "Mud!"
 "And something else, too—it's—wall, what is it?" as he emptied the contents of the net on the ground and picked therefrom a round black object and held it up for inspection.
 "Only a rock, you simp," said John.
 "Wash it off and see, Joe," and a moment after three heads were bending earnestly over the outstretched hand in which the black lump lay.
 "Boys, say boys; don't you know what that is? That's coal—yes, sir, coal."
 "Oh, get along."
 "It is, too. Say, let's hunt up Bensell; he'll know."
 "But where in thunder would coal come from, here?"
 "Maybe there is more where that came from," and Joe bent over the water, which by this time had grown quite clear again.
 "There is another piece; where is the net," excitedly.
 All were interested now. Even John forgot his discomfort of his wet clothes, in fact he courted dampness by stepping down in the water and securing several lumps. On shore they again examined the—now quite a pile of—the black rocks, after which they gathered them into the fishnet, and Clark lifted it to his shoulders all started in the direction of the mill in quest of Bensell.

 Coal fever exploded and contracted at the bay pretty much within the year of 1867. Gold was also discovered in April of that year, prompting the editor of the Gazette to attempt to contradict the wild and exaggerated rumors about both minerals. The gold, he said, was hard to get at and the coal not nearly as plentiful as claimed. Yet in the same piece we learn that Bensell had brought over to Corvallis a specimen of coal taken from three miles above Premier Steam Mills. It was tested and pronounced of competent quality. Two weeks later, "Rialto" wrote that more coal had been discovered, "steps have been already taken to form a company" to capitalize on it, and "the speedy development of this new country can be counted on for certain." He also stated that "considerable good farming land" lay unclaimed in the vicinity of the beds, so his reports must be considered in light of attempts to bring in settlers. Yet in May, Yaquina coal was pronounced a "good article" in San Francisco, and an actual vein was discovered within two miles of Premier Steam Mills. This led to a meeting at Oysterville held "to settle the future means of working these mines."
 This all so excited the editor that he threw away "the shackles of caution" and proclaimed,

the inexhaustible coal mines, to say nothing of the mines of precious metals, will alone, at no distant day, prove a source of incalculable advantage to our people.

Findings of the black rock became so common that it became routine. "Ohio" reported in June that

there is not much excitement about the coal beds at this time. New veins are being discovered every few days.

The Yaquina Coal Company was formed in August, but then problems apparently began to develop. Of course, we do not learn in the Gazette as much about failure as we do of success. By the end of the year, Rialto wrote that "Try, try again" was the motto of those developing coal. Never again was coal to be as big at Yaquina. In 1873, Bensell still reported optimism about the mineral, but communications on the subject became nearly non-existent. Yet interest must have continued, for as we shall see, coal production was a part of Toledo's economy in the 1890s.
 The story of coal on the bay is just a small part of the grand scheme to develop the region. As Rialto recognized, it was not enough simply to possess the natural resources.

The coal is in fact, and we feel the great necessity of capital. Men of means here, have it already invested, and feel too poor, to undertake the management of coal shipping on borrowed capital. Why is it that the country remains purely passive, while millions lie in their reach? Come and see it, before pronouncing it a humbug.

 The struggle to turn the bay area into a thriving commercial center, both through outside intervention and internal self-help, was a recurrent theme in the first decades of Yaquina settlement. It was especially intense the first few years, as new inhabitants came with their hopes and dreams—and nowhere further west to move.
 "High Tide" expressed the optimism surrounding Yaquina Bay: "ere many years it will be the metropolis of Oregon." Such a feeling impelled "the best and most substantial men on the bay" to organize a series of internal improvements. Public works projects such as road construction flourished, one road having 50 men supervised by G. R. Meggison working on it; a stage line between Corvallis and Yaquina Bay began to run three times a week; an independent schooner line was formed; most importantly, articles of incorporation were filed for a railroad company. Yet the brave pioneers of the region soon discovered that outside forces controlled much of their destiny. First, a public mail route took an exasperating length of time to come through. Then land surveys, and surveys for the harbor and a prospective lighthouse, took far too long to complete. The settlers could not understand this, for as they saw it, all people needed to do was "place their finger on the map" to see that Yaquina's growth was assured. Going through the bay would cut transportation costs for all produce from the Willamette Valley, Eastern Oregon, and even Montana and Idaho, because it saved 200 miles compared to Portland in getting shipments to the primary market at San Francisco. In fact, Yaquina Bay would soon be the biggest port between San Francisco and Puget Sound.
 What these honest boosters had not counted on, however, was opposition from those who had an interest in maintaining the status quo. Even though the Gazette editor continually proclaimed that economic growth at Yaquina would not hurt Portland, the Oregonian began to belittle this "little scribbler" as early as July 1886.491 No one but Portland was considered for a railroad route to the sea in the legislative session of 1867, and anti-Portland polemics became more heated as frustration increased. The Gazette editor wrote in 1869:

Every movement towards opening up and improving Yaquina Bay, from the first sailing of the little steamer Pioneer for those waters, to the present day, has been fought by Portland capital, backed by the Portland press.

"Rialto" gave the fullest expression to this feeling in an impassioned piece written in 1867. According to him, not just Yaquina but the entire Willamette Valley was being strangled by the Portland merchant and shipping monopoly. Therefore, these "honest men"—the "hard working farmers" of the Willamette Valley—should form an opposition against the Portland interests, who used state politics corruptly and selfishly. After all, in Portland "the merchants are at least one third Jews."
 Yet as it turned out, a conspiracy theory would not work well enough. David Newsome laid the blame for lack of development on the influence of both "heavy capitalists and popular prejudice." "Rialto" was more specific: "Old fogeyism is written on every worm fence in the country." "The farmers of Benton County," he explained "need to be swindled out of their eye teeth for ten years yet." Still, some optimism had to lie behind the continuous exhortation—"How long will the people slumber?" Ice blockades closed off the Columbia River for up to two months every year, and the Gazette jumped all over Portland for that. The best thing to happen to the area, according to its boosters, was the publishing of the survey of Yaquina harbor. The depth of the harbor's bar had been a topic for continuous debate throughout the state (It remains so today, I might add). Yet the federal survey gave it a glowing recommendation, and all papers in the state published it except the Oregonian. The Gazette editor proclaimed:

The report which we publish today, although not making an inch more or less water on the bar at Yaquina, will cause an entire revolution of the wheel of progress in our state and country.

 Confidence in getting a railroad increased—if not through discussion then through a power play:

If the public would make one energetic move in the right direction, a railroad could be built to the Yaquina Bay while the east and west "sides" were blackguarding each other.

 "We shall then," wrote one settler, "practically be brought in close proximity with the wealth, refinement, and civilization of the eastern states." As the editor of the Gazette often put it, "the world moves, and Benton County is, by no means, standing still."
 He also continuously chanted the phrase "There is no time to lose." What ended up happening, however, was a wait of years and years for a railroad of salvation. "Without a railroad to Yaquina," he complained in 1870, "we are hopeless, forever more." Resentment continued. "Rialto" continued with his apparently anti-market anti-Semitism:

So far, the business people of Corvallis show a decided aversion to cast off the Isaacs, Solomons, and Nathans of Portland; there is something pleasant in that familiar song, so common on Front Street, "I does sell my goods just as cheap as any oder men."

 During the 1870s, the Gazette continued in the vein noticed by one "Citizen" as early as 1867—"Railroad 'on the brain' is the prevalent epidemic in this community." The editor worked single-mindedly for a railroad, and harbor improvements, until his death in 1880. Yet one increasingly notices a tone of helplessness and despair, most marked in this vivid picture:

Three vessels, the Hunter, Lizzie and Caroline Medeau, are now piled upon South Beach, almost within a stone's throw of each other. A withering blight seems to settle over all our future commercial prospects, in that direction, and an ominous damper is thrown upon our railroad project, by this fearfully frequent wrecking of vessels at the extreme of our harbor, which is seized upon by the enemies of the place, and heralded aboard to the detriment of Yaquina Bay.

 It is possible that social divisions among the bay settlers contributed to problems associated with developing the region. The first settlers were proud of their service in the Civil War, even if they had not done all that much. "This Yaquina Country" stated a proud "Union man," "is settling up with the best kind of Union men. They will stand by the government to the last man and dollar." The election results for 1866 demonstrated this, as Yaquina was the "banner precinct" for the Union party, enabling the party to carry Benton County as a whole by providing straight-ticket majorities of 60 to 75 percent. By 1870 "Wolverine" was still able to say that "Yaquina Bay has been and still is an eye-sore to the democracy," but “Blue Breeches” had to admit that “The Yaquina is getting to be a great resort for...mangy Democrats." That the new squatters may have been poorer is seen in the response "Rialto" made to the claim that the Newport Transportation Company only employed Republicans. It was true, he stated, that Republicans owned nine tenths of the stock but three-fourths of the employees were Democrats. Republicans claimed to have accomplished all the improvements on the bay, and stated that "let them (the Democrats) carry the state, then farewell to all future aid."
 Partisan divisions may have been associated with divisions over the temperance issue, although this is a bit speculative. In 1867, reports of opposition to prohibition were coming in from Yaquina, and nine years later "X" reported on "the bacchanalian revelry that is constantly going on at this place... Yaquina Bay is cursed with its share of idle, vicious, lawless hoodlums. We earnestly hope a reformation will take place soon." Democratic majorities began appearing off and on after 1873, and there were certainly strong partisan feelings on many issues, as we shall soon see. One gets the feeling, though, that developing the bay often cut across social divisions. "Rialto", writing in 1867 about the mail route, threatened,

"we will all turn Democrat here, shortly, if we are denied the use of newspapers. Politicians on our side should think of this."

Five years later, he wrote on the same theme of self-interest:

Politics is easy; some few find time to denounce monopolists and land grants. These are, however, generally in favor of any monopolist, and any amount of land granting, to construct the Yaquina Railroad; after success in this matter, we will be sternly consistent.

Red-White Relations on Yaquina Bay

 What apparently united settlers on the bay the most, however, was not an issue of economic development or political affiliation. It was fear of the "red savages" at the nearby Siletz Reservation. The theme of "red-white" relations on the bay is easily the most exciting topic of the area's early history. Unfortunately, its significance has never been very fully explored.
 The earliest days of settlement saw conflict between non-indians and Indians. According to recent study, the first wave of immigration did not respect the property of the newly-transplanted Indians:

The Indians who had been settled near the bay were bitter and rebellious, as settlers seized their garden plots, houses, and fences, even ripping apart and old Indian's house for the lumber and nails.

Still, the Indians caught the spirit of things at the first Fourth of July celebration, with 300 of them (to 400 whites) going all the way to Newport to share in the festivities. They were even allowed to feast on the huge supply of food—after the non-indians were finished. Indian attendance at Independence Day celebrations afterwards became routine, with their dancing always listed as one of the great entertainments. At the same time, though, with land becoming increasingly scarce, efforts to remove the Indians began. "Rialto" launched the first tirade to close down the reservation in 1867. Stating that the non-indians should fulfill our promises—just somewhere else—he wrote:

The Siletz Agency is desirably located, close to a good market, abounding in the best of cedar, and amply large enough to support a large and prosperous community of whites. While the Indians are doing very well, the whites could do much better, not only to himself, but for Benton County and the state at large.

With this would come better morale, more available taxes, and most significantly—"then people could go to bed without fear of being "scalped" before sunrise."
 This last comment took on added meaning with the first big Indian scare on the bay. In September 1868 a white man named George W. Ballard (1820-1887) murdered Indian Frank near Corvallis. The Indians demanded blood, but apparently the Indian agent calmed them down by telling them of the "fair law" of the white man. Or did he? "Wolverine" wrote in soon after that the night of September 11, 1868, was appointed as the night on which the Indians would burn all the agency buildings, as well as kill the employees. Naturally, this news did not sit well with the non-indian inhabitants.

The people at the Premier Steam Mills were awakened from their peaceful slumber, in the dead of night, and an express started to alarm all the squatters along the bay. John Mackey's house presenting the most favorable locality for defense, all the women and children along the Depot Slough, and in the immediate neighborhood were taken to that place for protection. While the men stood guard around the house to protect them from their merciless foe.

No "Red Dawn" here, though. Although the settlers were "prepared to meet the "painted savages" in all the horrors of Indian warfare,"

Day at length dawned upon the scene, as the orb of dawn advanced and showed with resplendent beauty upon—what? The "thirsty warriors" from the Siletz? No! But upon the placid waters of the Yaquina winding peacefully to the ever-heaving bosom of the ocean.

Apparently agent Simpson had also nipped this plot in the bud, too—with the help of 15 citizens from the bay who had come to the agency to provide help.
 Relations remained quiet for several years afterwards. The bay inhabitants at times even explicitly recognized the benefit of having their "semi-civilized" neighbors close by. Upon reporting the rumor of the removal of 1,000 to 2,000 members of the Snake nation to Siletz seven months after the big scare, the Gazette editor noted that they and the solders accompanying them "will furnish a good market for the farm and garden products of Yaquina and the surrounding country." Also, the Indians provided "free labor" for the very important task of building roads, as long as they were fed—and they would refuse to work if not fed. Still, a petition began circulating around the bay early in 1870 asking for the removal of the Indians. The Gazette, although later claiming always to have supported expansion, opposed it. A correspondent wrote in that the petition was going nowhere, "the whole thing sounds like the ill spent work of some chronic office-seekers." Yet the Willamette Valley Mercury reported that

None have refused to sign it in this part of the county, but those who are "special pets" of Ben Simpson's and are readily classed as squaw men. What really happened? We will never know, as the issue became caught up in party rivalry. The Democrats in the Mercury accused Simpson, the Indian agent and a renegade Democrat, of desiring to keep the lucrative agency for selfish purposes: the fact that there are poor people who want farms is nothing to this clan of plunderers. The Gazette responded in kind.

 Petitions were still circulating in 1873, the year of the last, but most spectacular, would-be uprising. "Rialto" complained that whereas "heretofore the knowledge of such petitions has been kept from them," the Indians are "now made to feel that they are the "equal" of the white man; nothing is concealed from them. They are told, in so many words, that the whites are trying to 'remove' them." He stated that there was no reason to let the Indians know of news concerning the doings of the non-indians—"particularly that kind intended to make them uneasy."
 Unfortunately, the Indians were upset about more than plans to "remove" them. In July, 1872, Tututni Jack was drinking a bit too much and drew a pistol. T. H. Boyle shot and murdered Jack. It was ruled self-defense later, but again the Indians were up in arms and tried to take "revenge" on Boyle. This was just a specific episode in the general problem of liquor in Indian-white relations. Just the fact that Jack and Boyle were drinking together—albeit armed—is significant. That same month, though, federal officials stepped up pressure on those selling alcohol to the Indians. The US deputy marshal made a raid and arrested four non-indians, much to "Rialto's" dismay as the men were quite upstanding citizens. In a rather funny episode, the next day the marshal "made a very big fool of himself," got drunk, put the prisoners in irons, used profanity, and drove the women out of the women's cab in the steamer taking the prisoners to Portland.
 Indian discontent went underground for a few months. It then erupted with a ferocity not yet seen by the small community of isolated white settlers. The first hint that something was up came in a January 4th letter to the Gazette from "Alka," referred to as someone who was "thoroughly acquainted with the Indian character." According to him, a prophet came to Siletz several months before, proclaiming that


(1) The Prophet Wovoka (2) Indian Shakers

if the Indians would dance long and strong, the dead Siwash of many years past would return to life and... a war would be made on the whites, and a short, successful warfare would terminate in a repossession of their old homes and hunting grounds.

Laboring for a time without converts, the prophet gradually gained acceptance until "now, scarcely an Indian on the Siletz or Alsea agencies can be found who does not express perfect confidence in the prophet's prophecies." This, despite all the efforts of the agent to disprove the prophet and stop the dancing. "Alka" warned that the settlers' safety had always depended on divisions within the Indian population, but that now they were united and a real danger. In a very interesting comment, he stated that "the Indians know the county thoroughly—and the inside of nearly everyone's house in the county." Unfortunately, he noted, "there is a long list of promises, miserably disregarded" which caused Indian distrust. The editor of the Gazette commented on "Alka's" piece by pointing out the Modoc Massacre at Tule Lake and linking the problems at Siletz to the "unusual discontent on the part of all, or nearly all, the Indian tribes of the West and Northwest." He speculated that it might be that "a grand, universal uprising is premeditated." In any case, "the people on the bay feel alarm, and not without some cause."
 The next week the editor reported the gathering of Indians on the reservation, many of whom had been long absent. All the Indians were being "forced" to take part in nightly war dances with paint and feathers, even Indian women married to whites. He supposed that the Indians themselves probably did not even understand their own actions, "as they are governed by messengers and "spies" (prophets) from other tribes." Yet their "war-like intentions" were beyond doubt, according to those best acquainted with the Indians. He claimed that the ulterior motive of creating a reason for "removing" the Indians was behind the scare.
 "The most intense excitement prevailed among the citizens of the bay" the next week, as Edward N. Sawtell's house was burned to the ground and his life threatened. This crime was attributed to California Jack and was viewed as the first strike in the blitzkrieg to come. "All the families from Depot to Pioneer were at Elk City," and evidently both Democrats and Republicans joined in the fear. "Brutus," the correspondent for the Benton Democrat, exclaimed in a fit of "masculine protectiveness":

Something must be done by the Indian Department, or the state authorities, or you will see Yaquina Bay a waste, and the labor and hardships endured for seven long years come to naught. Is there no remedy for this? Are we not taxpayers, as well as others in Benton County? Have we no rights to be "protected?"...We men can endure all this, but our women and children are the sufferers.

"Rialto" suggested the planting of spies among the "friendly" Indians.
 The citizens of the bay (or 15 or them, at least) then met at Toledo and organized themselves in a militia company "for mutual protection against the Indians, in case of an outbreak." Bill Mackey of Toledo was appointed commander. Seven forts were set up, including Fort Butler at the mouth of Depot Slough. Correspondents described the horror:

there was a general stampede... many families took to little boats and kept to the middle of the river all night, and it was a very disagreeable night... The men harnessed their teams to their wagons, loaded in their wives and little ones, and started for places of protection in a hurry... Just think, Mr. Editor, of old men (some cripples) old women and young women and children being hurried out of bed in the cold, and through the darkness, rain and mud, be compelled, to flee to places of protection, leaving their homes to the tender mercies of these civilized (?) and Christianized (?) pets of the government... I have seen women cry and trembling with fear until quite sick; children cry and trembling, and looking up to their excited mothers for protection—scared nearly to death.

 The revitalization movement was continuing, with several dead Indians including Tututni Jack, reportedly coming to life. "It is hoped," "Rialto" wrote, that the "government will send some troops."
 Yet by the time these letters were published, they were old news. The lead story on page two of the January 25th Gazette read (in bold, changing print):

The Siletz Indian Scare!
•••
Tranquility Restored!
•••
Tribe Surrenders Its Arms!
•••
Superintendent's Visit!
•••
Whites Return To Their Homes!

 As it turned out, the superintendent of Indian affairs visited the agency and on his call all the Indians assembled. "Considerably excited by the "hostile" demonstrations, as they considered them, of the people who were forting on the bay," they unanimously agreed to give up all their guns, and also offered their knives. They stated that it was foolish to think they might attack the white settlers, for they "could not afford to." "And thus ended the much dreaded Siletz war."
 Interested observers still found it necessary, however, to perform a post-mortem on the incident. The editor began the task, under the pressure of the state exchanges which were "very flippantly" calling the scare all "fuss and feathers." He again reminded them of the suffering of the women and little children, but admitted:

That no real cause existed for this excitement, so far as the Indians are concerned, is now pretty clearly demonstrated. They were as badly scared as any of the whites.

As a journalist, however, he stated that he was not in the position to affix blame for the cause of the troubles.
 The opposing sides took up the pen for the Gazette two weeks later in order to clean that matter up. Gen. Joel Palmer, the lame-duck agent, declared forcefully that the Indians never committed one improper action against the non-indian settlers. On the contrary, "civilization" was proceeding apace at Siletz, and the Indians were "more than happy" to give up their arms. The dancing, which got everyone so excited, was only for departed spirits and not for war. A conspiracy had fanned the fire:

The idea that they contemplate using these restored relatives to aid in expelling the whites from their "hunting grounds and peaceful homes," has been added by some "silly old squaw," or more likely the plotters, in their scheme to induce the government to "remove" these Indians, and to aid in securing the establishment of a military post at Newport; and also encouraged by a class who hope to secure a rich harvest in the advancement of real estate along the line of the projected railroad, from the bay to Corvallis, by purchasing from the alarmed and frightened inhabitants, their little homes, that have been opened by toil and privations, for a mere pittance; for no one would regard the value of their home if their family were in danger. Now, sir, you have the substance of my convictions as to the reasonableness of this native outbreak.

 A "Toledoite" strongly disagreed, but his comments hint that Palmer's analysis might have been at least somewhat correct. This correspondent claimed that the main problem with the aboriginal population was that they did not stay on the reservation, but instead came into the area around the bay to be a general "nuisance." Then, "Toledoite" turned to make a strong case for opening up the reservation while denying that the petitioners ever asked for this. He threw in some familiar barbs at Portland, saying that it was in the monopolies' interest to always have Indians at Siletz, as they slowed down the development of the bay. What he failed to do, in other words, was refute Palmer or specifically address the problem of the scare itself.
 We may never know exactly what happened that January. "Rialto" maintained his story through and through—"I am proud to know no amount of obloquy or ridicule he (Palmer) may deem proper to cast upon the Yaquina Bay people, individually or collectively, will change their opinion of this trouble or its causes." Unfortunately, two master theses written recently did not deem it necessary to investigate the matter. Jean Marie Harger simply sites the short excerpt in Fagan's History of Benton County, plagiarized from the Gazette and the Democrat. William E. Kent only notes that "a ridiculous rumor of an Indian uprising" plagued Palmer's administration, even though he quotes an Irish immigrant who lived in the area sometime before 1889 as saying "We went to bed every night expecting to wake up the next morning and find ourselves dead." Clearly this is a "ridiculous rumor" worthy of more study.

The Great Fiasco

 As stated earlier, sources become much less helpful for the period of the 1880s. Even after 1873, the themes surrounding the bay become routinized. News becomes a chronicle of the everyday: "X" visits "Y," schooners visit here and there, new businesses crop up. Above all—the railroad, the railroad the Railroad! The story of the railroad has been told in several places, but these sources mainly detail the development of the line itself, rather than the impact it had on Yaquina society. The main thing to remember is that the railroad went through Toledo and ended not in Newport but in now-defunct Yaquina City. Otherwise the primary interesting aspect of the railroad was the tremendous problems it had. Completed December 31, 1884, one commentator in 1889 wrote that

the history of no railway in the country presents a more remarkable record of discouraging circumstances or obstacles more perseveringly overcome, than that of this.

A later student simply called it "a great fiasco."

The Birth of Lincoln County 1893

 So, it is time to turn our attention to Toledo proper. Toledo's history is none-too-well documented for this early period, but a few facts are known. John Graham made a claim on the present site of Toledo because his son Joe, the real settler, was only 20. When mail service for Yaquina Bay went public in 1868, the Graham's home was chosen as a post office. This occasioned the first mention of Toledo in the Gazette. Bill Mackey, who later was the militia commander during the uprising, became postmaster (Toledo was also known as Graham's Landing and Mackey's Point). The name is reported to have come from Joe Graham, who missed his native Ohio. For a long time Toledo hardly stirred interest in anyone; travelers to Yaquina Bay reporting on their trip in the Gazette invariably failed to mention it. Finally, a correspondent wrote to the Gazette in 1873 to report on "this beautiful place, called Toledo." "Hyper" wrote that "times are tolerably lively here at present. Fish and berries are abundant, also plenty of bear and small animals." The town had a school with 30 students, as well as a "real nice Sunday school." Obviously not a lot was going on. Toledo became a single voting precinct in 1876 and had a pretty evenly split vote for the elections reported. Even Bensell only tied his opponent 24 to 24 when he ran for state representative in 1876. In 1882, Graham laid out the first official town site along the Waterfront.
 Even if a lot was not occurring on the surface, though, Toledo was growing steadily. For the historian, the town bursts onto the scene in 1893 with its own newspaper and as the seat of a new county. The division of Benton County apparently proceeded quite rapidly, as the Gazette does not mention any plans at all for a split any time in 1892. Fear of a Chilean invasion of the Toledo Coal Company mine was much bigger news.
 Chinese American historian Jack Chen discusses the "Chilean War" which took place during the California Gold Rush:

 The Indians were driven out early. Herded onto reservations or killed off by infections against which they had developed no immunity, they were shot and actually hunted for their scalps by some besotted scoundrels. Then came the turn of the blacks and the foreigners. Chileans, banned from using their peons as laborers, were forced to either do the work themselves or leave their diggings. Then the "Chilean War" drove out the Chileans and Peruvians in 1849. The "French War” erupted on French Hill near Mokelumne where French miners, elated by an especially rich strike, injudiciously raised their French flag. American miners were driven out. Mexicans had settled Sonora and named it after the place in Mexico from which they had come. When Americans tried to force them from their rich claims, they retaliated with guns... Enforced at gunpoint, the 2,000 Mexicans departed, but the [$20-per-month tax on foreign miners] ruined Sonora...
 Then came the turn of the Chinese miners. In 1850, they numbered about 500 of the 57, miners. By 1852, they numbered several thousands in the mines. Their capacity for hard work and frugality, the way they kept to themselves and did not speak "proper" English, their skill in taking over abandoned claims and by diligent toil making them pay did not endear them to the rowdier [white] elements in the mines.

 Yet on February 20 of the next year, Lincoln County was born.
 A newspaper article written in 1959 for the Leader stated that rural resentment led to the county division. Supposedly B. F. Jones (1858-1925), grandson of John Graham (1805-1883), had gone to Corvallis in order to obtain wood for bridge repairs. The court in reply told him "cherry poles are good enough for you clam diggers down there." This got Jones steaming mad, and he and some friends pushed a division bill through the legislature while Benton County was napping. This account is doubtful. Charles B. Crosno (1845-1917) of Toledo, senator for Benton County, introduced a bill to divide the county early in 1893. According to Bensell, "the bill was introduced under the influence of a large petition signed by the largest taxpayers on this side of the summit." The Gazette's first comment on the division proposal stated that "public consideration" was "In a more perfunctory vein than hostile." This is, until the appearance of a scheme to also divide the southern part of the county to create a Blaine County, in honor of US politician James Gillespie Blaine (1830-1893). Then the eastern area of Benton County began to protest. The editor commented:

The probabilities are that had the western county scheme stood alone upon its merits, there would not have been any considerable opposition to it in Eastern Benton. Circumstances well understood here would support this view of the case.

 The next week the Gazette reported that an opposition movement, claiming the loyalty of 75 percent of the citizenry, had begun to circulate petitions against the division.

Toledo Selected County Seat

  Toledo was selected as temporary county seat, with a future election to determine the permanent seat. It was under this sunny sky that Stewart moved from Woodburn and began the Lincoln County Leader on March 9, 1893. Toledo had grown in size, number of businesses, and gentility since the railroad came through, but the first issue of the Leader repeats some familiar themes as well as adding new ones. Most noticeably, Stewart reported the discovery of "the finest specimen of coal ever exhibited in Toledo." Crosno, meanwhile, was taking a sample of Toledo coal to the World's Fair. In other developments, over 500 people had gathered to celebrate the opening of the new county "under the auspices of the women," who fixed a huge meal. It was "undoubtedly" the biggest event on the bay ever. Toledo was poised for growth, and boosterism was in the air. "Investors have begun to get their eyes on Toledo and many strangers are looking the town and county over these days," Stewart wrote; “Toledo will experience no boom this year, but it will do some mighty growing.” a shingle mill was starting up, and "Not a vacant house in town. Who will build four or five cottages? There is money in it." Finally, Stewart began a theme which was probably of the most importance to the town in these early years, that of conservative public-spiritedness. "Lincoln County starts out with good prospects and in safe and conservative hands," but

 The future prosperity of Toledo will depend to a great extent upon the liberality and public-spiritedness of its own citizens. The location of the county seat at Toledo has attracted favorable attention to this point, and many people will come to seek homes or investments here. The people must continue their present open and hospitable manner to all new comers. To those seeking purchases, property holders must not ask unreasonable prices. It is much better for a town to have 100 people owning $500 worth of property each than 50 people owning $1000 worth of property to every one. Every person who becomes a property holder in the town will become an advocate for its advancement and development.

 The citizens of Toledo then took action to improve their standing. The second issue of the Leader reported that "the matter of incorporating Toledo is given considerable attention by the people," and a public meeting was held at the end of March to discuss the matter. A vote was taken, and those in favor squeaked by with a 24 to 22 edge while a name change for the town was rejected. Thereupon a committee was appointed to get the ball rolling on the matter. In the meantime, the citizens put up half of the money and labor necessary to build a new depot for the railroad station. The Leader also continually vowed that Lincoln County would stand up for its rights against Benton County, which owned it considerable delinquent and other taxes. At the beginning of June, 43 electors signed a petition asking for incorporation; 40 signatures were required. The Leader in July reported that there was much talk pro and con on the issue, "a great part of which on both sides has been worthless." The editor does not, however, tell us what the arguments were. In any case, incorporation won by a margin of 37 to 18, with five ballots thrown out as defective. Toledo was officially a city.
 Toledo now set its sights even higher. First, to conquer the ever elusive region next door:

The early opening of the Siletz Reservation would open up one of the finest bodies of agricultural and timber land on the coast. In "justice" to the people who are developing the magnificent country between the Coast Range and the Pacific Ocean, this reservation should be opened at an early date.

Despite recurrent reports that this would happen any day, though, the opening was continually cutoff. It was now clear that the earlier fear of the Indians had subsided—a genuine Indian war dance was promised as entertainment for the Fourth of July. The relationship between Indians and non-indianss, however, was probably still a complicated one. Although desiring the opening of the reservation, a promotional supplement of 1894 proclaimed that "Toledo enjoys the undivided trade of the Siletz Reservation." On a more personal level, B. F. Jones recalled as an adult that

The Indians, who were quite numerous at the time, used to congregate near the schoolhouse. The children became so interested in them that it was necessary to have the windows on the side of the building painted.

It is quite interesting to speculate on the relationship between the two groups in such a loose atmosphere. In any case, in the last analysis what really mattered was summed up in Fagan’s comment that "if the Anglo-Saxon's heart is set on a tract of land, it rests not until it be had, by might if not by right." In May 1895, Pres. Cleveland signed the bill opening the reservation. This would have a decisive effect on the early history of Toledo.
 For Toledo simultaneously was locked in a battle with the town of West Yaquina for the county seat.
 West Yaquina no longer exists; it is possible Toledo would have met the same fate if it had lost hold of the seat. The first election came up in June 1894, and it was a relatively calm affair. The Leader said nothing on the matter until two weeks beforehand, when it came out with a dispassionate, but large piece on the reasons to vote for Toledo. Geographic proximity to the rest of the county, good roads, and the cost of moving the seat were listed prominently. Also given space was the argument that the prospective opening of the reservation would move even more people into the Toledo area. In any case, the editor was confident that no city would get a majority with Newport and Elk City also in the race. He was right; votes split geographically and West Yaquina garnered only 41 percent of the vote to Toledo's 32 percent.

Something About Rings

 The final vote between the two cities two years later was much more lively. West Yaquina apparently got the first blow in April 1896, as the Leader responded with a big front-page article, "Something About Rings." Stewart writes:

One of the stock arguments kept on hand and constantly in use by those opposed to Toledo for county seat is that there is a "ring" at Toledo which they want to tear down.

Yet they do not say who runs this "ring" or who composes it, he complains:

If by the wholesale charge of “ring” it is meant that the people of Toledo work together and pull together for the common good, then we plead guilty and ask no mercy. There is such a “ring” in Toledo.

Only one Toledo resident had yet held county office, he states, and only two have been nominated for this election. Stewart then turns on West Yaquina:

This “ring” is not backed in their fight for the county seat by any foreign capitalist, town lot boomer, national banker, nor even a busted banker, but is making a clean, honorable fight for it.

This theme is developed much more fully the next week in “Has Lincoln County A County Seat For Sale?” Stewart acknowledges the common talk that outside interests are trying to influence the election with money, and he then writes:

 Are the citizens and taxpayers of the grand young county of Lincoln ready to let the town let speculators, the national bankers, and the coterie of speculating shylocks come into our community and debauch an election; to defeat the will of the people with money; to upset and defeat the will of the people in order that their town lots that they have bought for speculation may be enhanced in value and thus bring dollars to their pockets? Can the bankers and speculators twist and wind the people of the county to their own use and benefit by their brazen check and dollars?
 We do not believe they can.

  Things quieted down in the month before the election. The harshest the Leader got was to proclaim “Keep it fairly before the people—Boodle boon town lots and high taxes means West Yaquina; home people and low taxes mean Toledo." On June 4th, the Leader calmly announced Toledo's "victory," also stating that the Indians had behaved very well in their first election.568 In the next week's Leader we are able to discover just how well the Indians had behaved. The election table showed Siletz precinct going 149 to 0 for Toledo (even the vote in Toledo precinct was only 163 to 11!). The final vote was 615 to 504. Clearly, Toledo won the county seat because of the timing of the reservation's closure. Even though Stewart made no comment on this fact, West Yaquina picked upon it and threatened to contest the election in order to get the Indian votes thrown out. The Leader responded with a threat of its own. Toledo, it said, had hired one of the best attorneys in the state and started investigating voters in other precincts. "The use of money can now be established," Stewart wrote, and

We do not hesitate to predict that if a contest is started that the county seat will remain at Toledo; but some persons who voted in Lincoln County on June 1, 1896, will come very near to the doors of the Oregon penitentiary.

West Yaquina quietly dropped the challenge.
 Not surprisingly, all this activity in the city’s early years created a lively political culture in Toledo. Not that issues were even well-defined, but the prominent residents of the town became used to frequent elections, participating in governmental activity, and keeping tabs on the work others were doing. The first city election in 1893 saw the beginning of a pattern as a meeting of citizens nominated a ticket for mayor and council. It included men who would serve again and again through (and beyond) our time period. Elected by an average vote of 45 out of 60, the slate, according to Stewart, assured the city of "a sound and conservative government till the next election at least."
 1894 was a state and Congressional election year, and the apparent consensus of 1893 dissolved into partisan politics. The Populists called the first convention for the county, and Toledo was given the greatest number of delegates.
 Interestingly, one of the most prominent Populists was Thomas P. Fish, a Portuguese immigrant who owned a general merchandise (cash only) store and who was listed as one of the wealthiest citizens in the Toledo precinct in 1893. Soon the other parties also called conventions. At least in terms of rhetoric, however, the county party platforms turned out to be very similar. This perhaps explains why apparently no party ideology entered into the (partisan) races for county offices. Party loyalty and personality seem to be all that mattered. Republicans can now be identified as holding the majority in the Toledo city council elected in 1893, but the offices were well mixed. Toledo went solidly Republican in the June 1894 voting, but that did not at all give an indication of future election results in the city. That partisan feeling did not run very deep in local matters is seen in the city election held six months after the state election. Again a citizen nominated ticket of various party affiliations ran unopposed.
 Toledo parties continued along the same lines for a few years after this. One interesting development was the nomination by both the Populists and Democrats of women for county school superintendent in 1896, but the state supreme court ruled the nominations unconstitutional before the election. The next year, however, saw significant changes in city politics. The first report of lack of consensus within the citizens' meeting to nominate town officials came out in November 1897. Two offices were filled by acclamation, but all the others had at least two nominees. Those with three or more only required a plurality of the vote on a first ballot in order for nomination. We cannot tell for certain if this meeting was different from the ones before it, but what is known is that an opposition "independent citizen's ticket" sprang up to challenge three of the meeting's nominations. The new slate did not get very far, though, as its choice for mayor stated that his name was used without consent. The slate went down to defeat by a wide margin, but the contest had changed Toledo politics.
 Over the next year, J. F. Stewart was elected county judge and sold the Leader, while mayor B. F. Jones became embroiled in various controversies concerning fiscal administration, including a lawsuit against him by the county. These two men were to be the protagonists in the biggest conflict in city politics during this period. The Toledo election of 1898. Stewart kept the opposition movement alive by heading a "reform and economy" ticket with newspaper publisher William H. Alexander (1840-1904). They claimed that Jones' tenure had been too ambitious in terms of the debt bonding for certain city improvement projects. Jones responded with a conservative appeal to keep the old guard, accusing Stewart of stirring up problems as a "new resident" (He had been in town for five and a half years). The new editor of the Leader commented that "to our minds it is the old theory of the tempest in a teapot," with the rivalry fueled by personality conflict. Apparently, the reformers were accusing the regular ticket of being controlled by "one man;" even though Jones was not up for reelection as mayor. The editor stated that a number of the reformers had taken a stand against incorporation, perhaps meaning that a long-standing fissure had been dividing the community.
 In any case, Jones wrote a stinging rebuke of Stewart the week before the election. Accusing Stewart of pure selfishness, Jones abandoned caution in his criticism:

I respect a Christian more than any other person if I think he is honest. Mr. Stewart is an official in the Methodist church of this city and he also poses as a reformer and prohibitionist. He has written many articles on the subject of giving whiskey to the Indians, and denounced those who sell or give whiskey to Indians in very harsh terms. Notwithstanding all this, he last January accepted the sum of $25 from a well known cannery man in this county who had been guilty of letting the Indians have whiskey, and for this paltry sum closed the columns of the Leader and agreed to go to the Siletz to use his influence to keep certain Indians from prosecuting said cannery man.

 Apparently the voters were not uniformly impressed with these charges, though, for two reform candidates won election to the city council, including Stewart. The regular ticket picked up the offices of city recorder and city marshal and one council seat. No mention of the division, however, was made over the next year. In 1899, though, the "independent citizens" again ran against the "citizens." Jones declined to run for reelection as mayor, but defended the improvements his four year tenure had brought. "There was not a street open in Toledo" in 1895, he wrote, and the and the opposition voted for everything for which the council had voted appropriation. Yet each side ran a full slate, and this time the opposition swept into power, claiming the mayor's office, one of the three alderman's seats, and all the three city offices.
 The editor, however, called the election "one of the most gentlemanly contests ever witnessed in Toledo," and indeed no platforms or even personality clashes were raised this time. Again, the issue disappeared completely during the following year, and the 1900 city election was not even reported in the Leader. The whole conflict may very well have just been a big spat that became ritualized into normal political rivalry, but the very rare public accusations leveled at Stewart and the first rumblings of opposition in 1897 cast doubt on this interpretation. Still, the 1900 Census gives us no reason to believe that a real social division lay behind the conflict. All but two of the 21 men running for office in 1897 to 1899 can be identified in the census manuscripts. No significant differences in occupation of home ownership differentiate the two sides; in fact, they almost all lived in very close proximity to each other. Party differences do not seem to be the answer either; both Jones and Stewart were Democrats. It just may not be possible to find out much more about this rupture.
 In any case, this episode of conflict did not prevent the leaders of Toledo from maintaining a moderately conservative social atmosphere in the city. Religion, though, does not seem to have been overly important in the life of the town. Although three church denominations began to hold services in the 1880s, during the 1890s usually only one or two denominations met. When they did, it was only twice a month at most, as they had to share ministers with the rest of the county. The first set of "church notes" did not appear in the Leader until 1899, when the Methodist pastor advertised his services with the promise, "come Christmas Eve, we contemplate a whooping time." Evangelists came through occasionally but inspired little comment; in 1900 a Methodist revival's lack of success was credited to skating rinks and other attractions available to Toledo residents.
 It was rather in the realm of public spiritedness and vigilance that Toledo excelled. Fraternal lodges proliferated continuously, with most meeting weekly (compared to monthly or bimonthly church services). The Good Templars were the first to organize the formation of the county, with 42 members. Headed by Crosno, nine of the first set of 14 officers were women.
 Yet Toledo remained moderate in the matter of temperance. The will of John Graham, the original squatter, forbade the location of saloons in Toledo, but the land was broken up and sold with no regard for his wishes.
 Prohibition candidates rarely got more than one or two votes in any election, and the saloonkeeper Henry Wulf, who kept a "quiet and orderly resort," had a house that was an "ornament" to the town. The Good Templars' lodge rarely did anything that received much publicity after its first literary contest in May 1893. This included topics such as "The Savior's Call;" "A Freeman's Ballot;" "The Martyred Mother;" "Arise! Break the Chains," and "The Voice From the Poorhouse."
 Yet social control was an important concern of the Toledo citizenry. The first big "scandal" in Toledo occurred in June 1893. Stewart tells the story:

Out attention has been called to the fact that there are two or three bulls running at large in and around the town. It is a constant source of danger from them to be allowed to thus run. Women and young girls with red dresses or red wrappers on are not infrequently over the town and they are liable to be attacked at any time by some of these beasts. Parties owning such beasts should keep them confined.

Apparently such public pressure worked, for the city council was able to move on to more important matters. The first ordinance passed relate to the licensing of liquor in the city, requiring a stiff $400 a year fee for a liquor license. Section three was particularly designed to "protect the virtue" of the young city:

Any keeper of a barroom, tippling house, or drinking shop who shall permit or employ any women to act as waitress or bartender or to sing or dance, or to serve in any capacity in such barroom, tippling house or drinking shop, shall be deemed guilty of a misdemeanor.

 The ordinance was in force until 1900, when a $500 bond secured by witnesses replaced the $400 annual fee.
 Toledo was indeed occasionally plagued with problems stemming from liquor. The third ordinance passed by the city council was one "concerning offenses and disorderly conduct." Complaints from Stewart about the ineffectiveness of the ordinance began February 1895 with the report of two or three vile drunks roaming around town. Perhaps a long-standing problem was just coming out into the open, for he wrote, "The toughs can’t run Toledo and they will come to grief if they keep on trying." The problem escalated the next year:

The disgraceful scenes that occurred on our streets last Saturday must not be repeated. It is a disgrace to a "civilized" community that such conduct should be tolerated, and the law-abiding people of Toledo will not further submit to such lawlessness. It is the marshal's duty to conserve the peace and to arrest the lawbreakers, be they Indian or white, and the time has now fully arrived when he must perform that duty, or resign... there is no excuse for allowing such outrageous conduct on our streets.

 The scenes enacted on the streets of Toledo last Saturday were disgraceful in the extreme. Toledo must prevent a repetition of them, even if it must go to extreme measures. The good citizens of the town cannot afford to allow such conduct. Until recently Toledo has enjoyed a reputation for law and order that has been the envy of other places... We have just passed through a struggle for the prosperity of our town, and we cannot afford how to surrender all we have won and more too.

Yet Stewart did not offer a solution to the problem, and he did not even seem to feel it appropriate to publicize the name of Toledo residents who were involved. He was more willing to point out Indian drunkenness, stating that if the problem continued, "we had just as well give up the idea of having law and order in our village." The fragmentary city records that exist, though, seem to credit the best part of disorderly conduct to the whites.
 The final area of Toledo's early life that remains to be examined is the economy. Here resigned also a moderate public spiritedness. The rhetoric of boosterism implied that business people were in the boat together:

Those who have pinned their faith firmly to the bay county and continues to do so, will be amply rewarded. The rapid development of the county is assured and the benefits will be correspondingly great.

In this spirit, cooperative labor exchanges, a subscription creamery originally envisioned as a cooperative, and a Board of Trade to promote Toledo business interests were formed. Meanwhile, new stores were coming in and a telephone line being put in between Toledo and Newport; despite acknowledged hard times there were "no flies on Toledo." The only incident of conflict in the city's economy reported by the Leader drew the comment, "Toledo rarely ever has labor troubles, but it was the scene of a strike last Friday." Apparently the Chinese cook at the Blake House refused to cook, "or even wash dishes" and was promptly fired.
 Jack Chen reflects on the high regard "substantial citizens" had for Chinese cooks on the West Coast during the goldrush:

Substantial citizens in the West had no unfriendly feelings toward the Chinese in the early days. They found them good employees. It was chic to have a Chinese cook or gardener, and in these capacities the Chinese were much appreciated by their employers.

 Yet how to develop Toledo was a problem for the city. As Stewart put it, "Lincoln County has the climate and the resources. All it needs is labor and capital to develop the latter." The most ambitious development plan formulated by the business people of Toledo came in 1894. "Many Citizens" called a meeting to discuss improving the tidelands, with the search for a staple article and a market for it specifically in mind. Stewart assured the cautious that "some would-be boomer" did not call the meeting, but rather substantial people "who can influence a large amount of outside capital." Steam dredging the dykes and planting sugar beets was hit upon as the answer. The scheme never came off, but at least Stewart thought it was not a pipe dream:

That the plan proposed is entirely feasible and practicable is amply demonstrated by the careful observation and study that practical people have given the matter. Those who are urging the enterprise are strictly practical, and are of considerable capital themselves, and are capable of interesting enough more [people] to make any work which they might start a thorough success.

The proposal may have been rooted more in worry than optimism, however, for the next month Stewart preached a sermon on the dangers of waiting for another railroad boom. Toledo must develop its agriculture in order to have a chance at economic success:

Let us turn our face resolutely from the deceitful past with its whirligig of wealth-making and turn it with the true hearts and strong hands to development of the great resources with which we are supplied...

Besides activities that fit neatly into categories like the political or the economic, Toledo had its share of the ordinary pleasures of life. A baseball team formed in 1893 beat Newport 25 to nine one fine day in August. The boys in town were starting a minstrel troupe; Women's Aid Societies occasionally organized the community for a cemetery clean up. Toledo boasted of its musical talent; it was sometimes recalcitrant in support of public schools. And the teenagers were a problem. They made noise at public events, hopped on trains going through town, and six of them apparently "did commit an "indecent act" and "disorderly" by spitting upon a certain building occupied by Christian Hansen (1846-1915), whereby the peace and quiet of the city was disturbed." Most importantly, "the war spirit of this community took definite shape" with the sinking of the USS Maine; Norwegian immigrant Otto O. Krogstad began to drill nine to 13 year olds, and 30 men signed up for a military company with hopes of being mustered into the Oregon National Guard.

Census Analysis

 Unfortunately, the manuscript census returns do not tell us much about Toledo's history in the 19th Century beyond age ratios, occupational distributions, and the like. One major problem is that the 1870 and 1880 returns are only demarcated by Toledo precinct, not the specific area around the town. Persistence is nearly non-existent, so any occupational mobility is impossible. The crucial missing link is the 1890 Census manuscripts, destroyed by fire. The 1910 Census returns have been released, and a history of Toledo which considers the early years of the 20th Century could valuably use them, as the 1900 Census specifically divides the City of Toledo from the surrounding area.
 Still, we can find a few interesting details about Toledo's population through the census returns. Total population was 200 in 1870, 232 in 1880, and 302 in 1900. The tables are pretty much self-explanatory, although a few comments are in order. First, things did not change that much over our period, even with the switch of analysis from the precinct to the town. The sex ratio was perhaps the most dramatic indicator of change, going from 73.7 percent male in 1879 to 52.1 percent in 1900. The age ratio did not change much, although the population aged 50 and over had increased significantly by 1900. Approximately, for Toledo, the plurality of people not born in Oregon came from Ohio in 1870 and 1880. The Great Plains, however, took over by 1900. Immigration from the South was nearly non-existent.
 Not surprisingly, business and professional occupations became much more important in 1900. The non-farming occupations in 1870 and 1880 would not even be as great a percentage of occupations if the Siletz Reservation had not been included. The most important comment necessary to interpret the occupational figures concerns the high percentage of laborers in all three censuses. A large proletariat was by no means floating through Lincoln County in 1870, for example, of the 20 laborers, 13 of them were sons of farmers and the other seven lived in residence with another heads of household. In 1800, only three of the laborers were heads of household. By 1900, this number had grown to eight, but five of those owned their own home. At the same time, 60 percent of all heads of household owned their own home, only 20 percent of them with a mortgage attached. The relative balance of occupations in 1900 is also worthy of notice.
 Only three women held "titled occupations" in 1870, two educators and one matron. By 1900, though, 14 of the 91 women over 16 had titled occupations listed. Included were three housekeepers, three dressmakers, three educators, two milliners, one crayon artist, one servant, and one boardinghouse keeper. In 1900, there were nine female heads of household, compared to three in 1880 and none in 1870.
 Only seven, or 7.6 percent of all male heads of household in Toledo precinct in 1870 remained there ten years later. This included the physician at the reservation and four very close neighbors who lived near the reservation. This could indicate the Siletz may have been the only core of stability in the area for a long time after the settlement of Yaquina.
 Toledo was extremely homogeneous ethnically throughout the period, although the 1870 Census shows three non-indians married Indian women with six children, and the 1880 Census shows two such marriages with three children. In 1900, no Indians lived in the city, but two Chinese men worked at the hotel and four Japanese laborers were working on the railroad.

Semi-Conclusion

 In the end, this study of the early history of Toledo does not suggest any conclusions. The year 1900 marks no special stage of transition for Toledo; that will only occur with WWI. Yet what has been presented here is a basic outline of the development of Toledo from a small outpost in a wild frontier area into a self-confident city facing basically new and different problems. As we have seen, change in Toledo was accomplished through struggle in a setting that contained many possibilities. Our position today, of course, remains the same as this.

The Birth of Toledo

 Joseph D. Graham and William Mackey left Corvallis for this part of the country. They came for the purpose of taking homesteads. This region had just been thrown open to settlers at that time.
 Their outfit consisted of a team of horses and a wagon with a towboat for a bed in which their supplies were packed. At Nortons, which was at the end of the wagon road, they left their team, and launched the boat after cutting the brush away from the banks of the river, and after many weary hours of travel, they arrived at the end of the toilsome journey.
 Mackey filed on a claim on the south side of the Yaquina River, while Graham took the one where Toledo is now located, but being only 20 years of age, he was unable to hold it, and so his father, John Graham, with one of his daughters, came over and took charge of the claim. A year later he took the claim west of his father's. The government spruce mill now stands on a portion of Joe Graham's claim.
 When they came here, there was nothing but mountains covered with old burnt snags, and the tidelands were covered with tules and had many dangerous tide holes into which one might fall without the least warning.
 They endured a great many hardships the first winter, living in a small shack with only a fireplace to heat it. The daughters did the cooking on the open fireplace for a number of men. They were also cut off from the outer world, there being no roads in there. The Indians were very restless for at this time they were being collected and put on the Siletz Reservation.
 In the spring, Joe Graham built his house just back of where the National Security Bank is now located. His father built a house of 16 rooms, using it for a hotel. It was where the Lincoln Hotel now stands. After it was completed, he moved his family over here from Corvallis.
 It is said that when the post office was established in 1868, J. D. Graham, a son, was told that he could name the place. He said, "I am homesick for Ohio. We will call the place Toledo." Toledo post office was established on July 4, 1868, with Bill Mackey first postmaster.
 The Oregon Pacific, which is now the Southern Pacific, was built from both ends, and was connected somewhere at Blodgett's Valley in the 19th Century. At this time, the train made connections with boats at Yaquina City, and the passengers and freight could be taken north or south on the boat twice a week.
 John Graham would not sell land to anyone on which to locate a saloon, so some men who were following along with the railroad construction crew anchored a scow in the river, and built a saloon on it. Later, he made a will which contained a provision forbidding the building of saloons in Toledo, but after some years different parts of the land were sold, and the new owners failed to carry out his wish.
 In 1893, Lincoln County was formed from a part of Benton County. This region was separated from the other part by mountains and the people were being taxed but received no benefit from it. They formed this county—selecting Toledo for the county seat—because it was the most centrally located town. The first court was held in a hall which later became known as Gust Olson's (1846-1921) barn. When the county became a little richer, they built the present courthouse.
 After John Graham had built his house, he went out to the valley and brought in 80 head of cattle, and in this way established the dairy industry. Fishing was already carried on to some extent. The first mill was built at Caledonia, now the southern part of Toledo. Some time later the old Fischer-Story Mill was built. At first, it was very small, but as the years passed by, it changed hands quite often and each owner added something to it. The next one built was the Altree Mill, and a few years after that, Guy Roberts' Mill was built. Last of all, but not least, came the big government spruce mill, which had added a great deal to the city’s tax budget.
 The first schoolhouse was built on the opposite side of the track from the creamery, and as the town grew larger, a new one was built over the canyon where the new gymnasium is now located. Only two educators were employed then. A few years later a larger school building was built. As the town grew, more rooms were needed, so they completed the old school as it is now. In 1911, the high school was built. At the present time, there are 38 students attending high school, with three teachers; and 159 in the elementary grades with five teachers employed.
 Toledo has a population of about 800. It's main street is paved. We have also electric lights and a good water system. There are four concrete business houses.

A Busy Farmhouse 1850

  In her book, Rural Hours, Susan Fenimore Cooper (1813-1894), the eldest daughter of James Fenimore Cooper (1789-1851), takes a look at the daily life of a busy farm woman:

 From the window of the room in which we were sitting, we looked over the whole of farmer Brown's farm; the wheat field, corn field, potato patch, and buckwheat field. The farmer himself, with his wagon and horses, a boy and a man, were busy in a hay field, just below the house; several cows were feeding in the meadow, and about 50 sheep were nibbling on the hillside. A piece of woodland was pointed out on the height above, which supplied the house with fuel. We saw no evergreens there; the trees were chiefly maple, birch, oak, and chestnut; with us, about the lake, every wood contains hemlock and pine.
 Finding we were interested in rural matters, our good friend offered to show us whatever we wished to see, answering all our many questions with the sweet, old smile peculiar to herself. She took us to the little garden; it contained potatoes, cabbages, onions, cucumbers, and beans; a row of current bushes was the only fruit; a patch of catnip, and another of mint, grew in one corner. Our farmers, as a general rule, are proverbially indifferent about their gardens. There was no fruit on the place besides the apple trees of the orchard; one is surprised that cherries, and pears, and plums, all suited to our hilly climate in this country, should not receive more attention; they yield a desirable return for the cost and labor required to plant and look after them.
 Passing the barn, we looked in there also; a load of sweet hay had just been thrown into the loft, and another was coming up the road at the moment. Farmer Brown worked his farm with a pair of horses only, keeping no oxen. Half a dozen hens and some geese were the only poultry in the yard; the eggs and feathers were carried, in the autumn, to the store at [?] Green, or sometimes as far as our own village.

A Woman's Work is Never Done

 They kept four cows; formerly they had a much larger dairy; but our hostess had counted her three score and ten, and being the only woman in the house, the dairy work of four cows, she said, was as much as she could well attend. One would think so; for she also did all the cooking, baking, washing, ironing, and cleaning for the family, consisting of three persons; besides a share of the sewing, knitting, and spinning. We went into her little buttery; here the bright tin pans were standing full of rich milk; everything was thoroughly scoured, beautifully fresh, and neat. A stone jar of fine yellow butter, whose flavor we knew of old, stood on one side, and several cheese were in press. The woodwork was all painted red.
 While our kind hostess, on hospitable thought intent, was preparing something nice for tea, we were invited to look about the little sitting room and see "farm ways" in that shape. It was both parlor and guest chamber at the same time. In one corner stood a maple bedstead, with a large, plump feather bed on it, and two tiny pillows in well bleached cases at the head. The walls of the room were whitewashed, the woodwork was unpainted, but so thoroughly scoured, that it had acquired a sort of polish and oak color. Before the windows hung colored paper blinds. Between the windows was a table, and over it hung a small lookingglass and a green and yellow drawing in watercolors, the gift from a friend. On one side stood a cherry bureau; upon this lay the Holy Bible, and that its sacred pages had been well studied, our friend's daily life could testify. Near the Bible lay a volume of religious character from the Methodist press, and the Life of General Marion. The mantel piece was ornamented with peacocks' feathers, and brass candlesticks, bright as gold; in the fireplace were fresh sprigs of asparagus. An open cupboard stood on one side, containing the cups and saucers, in neat array, a pretty salt cellar, with several pieces of cracked and broken crockery, of a superior quality, preserved for ornament more than use.
 Such was the "square room" as It was called. It opened into the kitchen, and as our dear hostess was coming and going, dividing her time between her biscuits and her guests, very impartially, at last we asked permission to follow her, and sit by her while she was at work, admiring the kitchen quite as much as we did the rest of her neat dwelling. The largest room in the house, and the one most used, it was just as neat as every other corner under the roof. The chimney was very large, according to the approved old custom, and it was garnished all about with flatirons, brooms, brushes, holders, and cooking utensils, each in its proper place. In winter, they used a stove for cooking, and in the very coldest weather, they kept two fires burning, one in the chimney, another in the stove. The walls were whitewashed. There was a great deal of woodwork about the room—wainscoting, dressers, and even the ceiling being of wood—if it be unplastered, as this was, is often a pretty rustic sight, a sort of storeplace, all kinds of things hanging there on hooks or nails driven into the beams; bundles of dried herbs, strings of red peppers and of dried apples hanging in festoons, tools of various kinds, bags of different sorts and sizes, golden ears of seed corn ripening, vials of physic and nostrums for man and beast, bits of cord and twine, skeins of yarn and brown thread just spun, and lastly, a file of newspapers. The low red ceiling of farmer Brown's kitchen was not quite so well garnished in July as we have seen it at other times, still, it was by no means bare, the festoons of apples, red peppers, and Indian corn being the only objects wanting. By the window hung an ink bottle and a well-fingered almanac, witty and wise, as usual. A year or two since, an edition of the almanac was printed without the usual prognostics regarding the winds and sunshine, but it proved a complete failure; an almanac that told nothing about the year's weather nobody cared to buy, and it was found expedient to restore these important predictions concerning the future snow, hail, and sunshine of the county. Public opinion demanded it.
 A great spinning wheel, with a basket of carded wool, stood in a corner, where it had been set aside when we arrived. There was a good deal of spinning done in the family; all the yarn for stockings, for flannels, for the cloth worn by the men, for the colored woolen dresses of the women, and all the thread for their coarse toweling, etc., was spun in the house by our hostess, or her granddaughter, or some neighbors hired for the purpose.

Farming in Lincoln County

 From the early 1880s into the 1930s, tens of thousands of people ventured to the Central Oregon Coast via train. But few accounts documenting travelers' impressions of the region exist. In January 1892, a very telling account of a trip to Yaquina Bay was written by a Corvallis Gazette reporter. A conversation with the man sitting next to him on a Yaquina bound train inspired him to write a newspaper column.
 About the time the train reached Yaquina, the topic of discussion between the reporter and traveler turned to the economy of the area, particularly east county. The traveler "looked at the muddy waters of the bay" and the hills surrounding the bay and asked the reporter, "How do you people make a living?" The reporter found the question "surprisingly difficult to answer." After thinking on it a while, the reporter gave up and asked for another topic of conversation.
 After the two departed company, the reporter devoted more thought to the question and then wrote a column detailing the answer he should have given to the traveler.
 Many people came to what is now East Lincoln County to take advantage of free government homestead land, even though it was too hilly for large-scale, profitable farming. In spite of the topographical challenge, people sought out free east county land that the reporter diplomatically called "not so level as to be monotonous." The only level and to be found in the region was "at the bottom of the bay."
 What was the attraction? Early on it was to get rich quick. Word spread the land would yield a very profitable sugar beet crop. Coal deposits drew many to the area hoping to make a quick fortune. Neither of these pursuits made anyone wealthy in this region.
 By 1892, most folks were a little wiser about the agricultural limitations of the area. The reporter wrote that people continued to be drawn here because "it's a big thing for a poor man with a few hundreds to homestead a claim, raise his own garden, beef and pork, set out his fruit trees and raise most of the feed for his family." They were not expected to become rich but to make an honest living which is "all the Lord and the law requires."
 As for employment opportunities in 1892 for new arrivals into the area: "The work is not to be had, there is scarcely sufficient for those already settled here." He added, "It's not right to coax people to buy a lot and spend their last dollar building a house on it, with the promise of plenty of employment."
 Fortunately, Lincoln County has more employment opportunities today, though finding a living wage job is more difficult than elsewhere. The average wage in Lincoln County is lower than the state average and even lower than the national average.

Toledo Development League Invites You 1911

 Do you want a farm? Do you want a tract of land where one acre will keep a man busy and when 10 to 20 acres will enable the owner to raise hay, grain and vegetables for feeding stock, for home use and for sale, to keep a herd of dairy cattle, hogs, chickens, to have a fruit orchard, a berry patch and where you cannot only make a good living, but can save money?
 These two questions are addressed to the man who reads this booklet and is looking for a home in the Pacific Northwest. Lincoln County has the land which will do all that is outlined above. This being true, and investigation as to the reliability of any statement made in this publication is earnestly requested, the Toledo Development League is sending out an invitation to the home seeker to come to Lincoln County. This is one of the counties in Western Oregon which is sparsely settled. It has never been advertised to an extent which has brought it to the attention of the man looking for a location where he can engage in farm pursuits. There are tide and bottom lands and hill lands, adapted to farming, fruit growing, dairying, poultry farming and bee keeping. There are billions of feet of timber, large coal deposits and fishing industries. Opportunity is open to the man who must begin in a modest way and there are openings for men of means. Asking settlers to come to Lincoln County is inviting them to come to a section where success has been achieved.
 Lincoln County, has an area of 647, 380 acres. It has a population of between 5,000 and 6,000. Its cities and towns have more than one half the population in the county, and comparatively few men are at work on the farms. This land is not at all adapted to cultivation, but there are vast areas which will yield in abundance, and it is to interest farmers, stockmen and dairymen in these lands that this is written. The timber resources are great, the deposits of coal and building material valuable, the fisheries sources of wealth. But the fertile, undying soil is Lincoln County's greatest asset. This will endure when forests are denuded, when quarry and mine are exhausted, and when even the waters have been despoiled.
 All of Lincoln County is rich in developed and undeveloped resources. The part of the county directly tributary to Toledo is the section under consideration in this publication. The industries of the forest, the field, the mine, the product, the net results to the farmer or to the man engaged in other vocations are to be told of. The object is to induce settlement—to build up the country.
 Along Yaquina Bay, the Olalla, Yaquina and Siletz rivers, and along smaller streams are tide and bottom lands of marvelous fertility. Dyking is necessary on the tide lands, but they more than repay any outlay. Most of the land bordering Yaquina Bay is either protected from overflow, or the work of dyking is in progress. The land is easily drained and at once becomes valuable for cultivation or pasture. It is adapted to the latter purpose before dyking. The ridges of earth are thrown up and after disintegration are seeded, so that in the event of unusually high tides the action of the water is harmless. The bottom lands are also rich. The clearing of these is not expensive. The bench and hill lands are more difficult to clear, but the cost is not large. The logged-off lands are adapted to the growth of hay, cereals and fruits. The char-pitting method and stump pullers, and sometimes explosives are resorted to in order to get rid of the obstructions to cultivation. The purposes to which the land may be devoted are outlined in brief herewith:

 The farm holdings in Lincoln County in the vicinity of Toledo do not average large. There are different reasons for this. One is that a large farm is not required to make money for the owner, and the question of labor is a prime consideration. The man who does not have to hire hands is the one who is doing the best. Wages are high. The principal farm crops do not differ from those of other sections. The grains are not threshed. The oats, wheat and rye are cut in the milk and cured for feed. When the farmer needs grain for his cattle, horses, hogs or chickens, he buys it. His hay crop is for his own stock and for sale to the men who want to fatten stock for market. When he sells he get from $10 to $15 per ton on his farm, and the price rules higher when he bales his crop for shipment. He uses a separator and sells his cream in the nearest town or ships it by rail. His eggs and poultry find ready sale. Hogs are not raised in large numbers. They are not, in the language of a farmer here: "A carload proposition." The farmer raises enough for his own needs, and he sells any surplus to the local butchers. Hogs are easily fattened on the hay and root crops which are grown. They give the farmer good meat at a price which is less than the ordinary householder pays and when he sells he gets the ruling market price which has been high during late years. In the pages that follow will be found verified statements of actual experiences.
 The bench and hill lands are adapted to certain varieties of fruits. Apples have brought good returns. Winesaps and Jonathans bear well. The Spitzenburg has not proven successful thus far. It is thought that with proper pollenization this variety will pay. The King of Tompkins Company is at its best in this section. As an experiment a carload was shipped to Los Angeles, and the fruit sold for $2.75 to $3.50 a box. Commercial orchards in the vicinity of Toledo are not plentiful. Nearly every farmer has a family orchard, which includes so many varieties that the product of several orc