The west shore. (Portland, Or.) 1875-1891, June 01, 1884, Page 177, Image 14

Below is the OCR text representation for this newspapers page. It is also available as plain text as well as XML.

presented a memorial in 1609, petitioning for a suitable
reward, and for th comm, 0 n gpjj exp
fortify the passage and defend it against the ships of
other nations.
Briefly stated, the narrative of Maldonado was as
follows: In the year 1588 he passed through the long
and tortuous channel of the Straits of Labrador, in lati
tude 75 degrees, into the "North Sea," across which he
sailed in a southwesterly direction a distance of 7!H)
leagues (about three thousand miles), when he came
upon the Straits of Anian, loading from the North Sea
directly south into the South Sea. These Btraits were
fifteen leagues long, having six turns in their oourso, and
varying in width from a quarter of a league to two or
three times that distance. On the east was America and
on the west Asia. In this particular, and in their north
and south direction, the Straits of Anian ami those dis
covered later by Behring are identical, but in no other,
especially not in location.
That there wbb a foundation in fuct to this story is
within the limits of possibility. There may have lwen
made, prior to the time the memorial waf presented,
some voyage to the extreme Atlantic coastof America of
which no record has been preserved To have passod
from the Atlantic into a large open sea in latitude 75
degrees was, of course, an impossibility. That, like Cor
tereal nearly a century before, he may have Bailed around
the coast of Labrador and through the straits into Hud
son's Bay, in latitude 60 degrees, is possible, and like
his great predecessor, who had asserted that this inland
sea connected with the Indian Ocean, he may have sup
posed this great sea could be followed until the desired
Straits of Anian were found. Believing thoroughly in
this theory, Maldonado may have written the fictitious
account of their discovery with the hoe of being en
trusted with the command of an exedition to search for
these straits and take possession of them.
In his narrative, which was unusually precise and
careful in its details, Maldonado gave all the geographical
ideas of the time in regard to the regions that would
naturally be visited during such a voyage as the one
described; and this very fact is strongly presumptive
evidence that thevoyage was a fiction, as these theories,
bo carefully followed, have nearly all been found to be
false. Even the minuteness of detail is suspicious, since
it is chiefly the inaccurate records, clumsy narratives and
"yarns" flowing from the fertile imagination of the sea
rovers, to which many of the erroneous, and even ludi
crous, ideas -of those times are directly chargeable. No
such carefulness in statement characterized the narrative
of any prior or contemporary voyage; ami this was the
first one claiming to have accomplished so much, which
did not sadly mar the maps of theoretical geographer.
Its ready-made appearance was sufficient to cause its
entire rejection by the Council of the Indies; and yet, in
after years, the original memorial, or a copy of it, having
been accidentally stumbled upon among ancient Spanish
records, it received almost universal credence, to each tit
extent, at least, at to eanse every expedition dispatched
to those regions to be instructed to search carefully for
alnuuininto's straits. Several times, at widoly separated
periods, earnest efforts have been made to discover other
proof of this voyage than the memorial to the Council of
the Indies; but in the Spanish records not the faintest
allusion has Iwen found to any voyage whatever having
been made in that direction at the time spoken of in the
narrative. Even aa lute as 171)0 the authenticity of the
voyage was gravely discussed in Europe, since when but
little has boon said or thought alnnit Maldonado's pas
sage, save by historians, who invariably refer to it as the
" Fabulous Straits of Anian." Hauky L. Wn,t,s.
IT surprises strangers to find all stylos of carriages
. built in Oregon. During the last twenty-five years
farm and express wagons have boon a part of our homo
manufactures. Yet largo imortution at low prices
have checked the manufacture hero, while high wages
have ruled, but at better labor rates our home products
bogin to pay and extend their markets. Our own woods
have come into more general use. When machinery is
applied to turn Bxko8, hubs and felloes and lond 1kwh
hero, as in other States, this industry will succeed. The
first large enterprises must struggle for trade marks and
equal sales against strong competition from the Western
States. Their goods are on salo in every town. They
strive to hold the market, drain ofT the money and con
quer every rival.
A firm in North Portland has proved it possible to
build and soli at a profit every kind of carriage, from a
wheelbarrow to a five-ton truck, a fine buggy, an elegant
hack or a coupe. Whatever a man wants for city or
country he can find in those extensive simps. Forty
thousand dollars wore paid out by the firm Inst year for
labor alone. Other factories are gaining strength, Some
have yielded to comptition for lack of capital A few
rich men sustain our industries. Others withhold syni
pathy and help.
Of stoves every home must have several. The trade
has been gxl and the imports immense. Whon the
Willamette Stove Works began they wore distrusted and
left to struggle alone. By industry and pluck they put
good stoves on the market, sont them on all linos of
railroad and steamboat, competing with imported wares.
They promised to replace any broken or burnotl'out
plates on call They can quickly multiply all parts from
their patterns. They won the field. Orders exceeded
their capacity. They excel in quality of iron, variety of
styles and beauty of finish, and are displacing import
rapidly. They command a larger market every year, and
bid fair to rival and exclude all iniorU of this class of
goods. Why pay freight on them, when the bout iron is
here and the skilled workmen also?
Twenty years ago it was an exrimrt to manufac
ture woolens, tor even the homo market In Oregon or
Washington. Borne factories failed, closed up end stood
idle for five, ten, fifteen or more jrtirs. Others mined