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About The Sunday Oregonian. (Portland, Ore.) 1881-current | View Entire Issue (July 11, 1909)
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THK Old Fort JJallps Historical So
ciety, which recently celebrated its
fourtfi birthday anniversary and
the oftth anniversary of the establish
ment of the post with a "silver shower"
In the building formerly used as the
turpeon's Quarters, has at last won a
long, uphill fight for the preservation
of grounds, buildings and accessions,
whose connection with the early history
of Wasco County and Oregon make
them Invaluable to the future genera
tions of this commonwealth.
Where once was a vast wilderness
nd where the Government had reserved
the land for a distance of ten miles In
very direction, now only a small plot
of ground Is preserved occupied by a
single building. On all sides the march
of improvement Is very noticeable and
the scramble for the elusive dollar Is
apparent. Since the old fort building
was placed In a habitable state through
the efforts of the society tt has been
surrounded by small cottages and land
values in Its vicinity have Increased
threefold in the last few years. A lot
adjoining the property donated by a
special act of Congress was purchased
by the society recently at double the
cost it -could have been secured two
Honorary and active members re
sponded to the call for a "silver
shower" to such an extent that the
additional land holdings will soon be
tree from all Incumbrance. Among the
prominent honorary members remem
bering the occasion suostantlally were:
Mrs. G. O. Holler and Mrs. R. H, Mc
Kee. ot Seattle. Wash., widow and
daughter of Major Haller.- who assumed
command at the fort In 1853 Mrs. Mc
Kff was born In the old log barracks
during the time her father was In com
mand fcl. II. McFarland. of Portland;
ex-tiovernor Z. F. Moody, of Salem;
Ceorge H. Hin.es, secretary of the Ore
gon Historical Society; Mrs. S. S. Mun
0n, ot Wurrenton, a Whitman survi
vor; Mrs. M. M. Cushing and Mrs. Kob
ert Mays, of tn.s city.
The society's president, Mrs. Will
iam Shackelford, delivered the follow
ing address, which gives important his
; torical data In relation to the post from
the time it was established to the pres
ent: "It Is mot gratifying to the Old Fort
palles Historical Society to greet so
'many of Its friends today; it is also
suggestive to our lmnds of your loy
alty to our work, which has been car
ried on so successfully for the last five
years. Without your support, we could
have done, but little.
"As you perhaps remember, this is
the 59th anniversary of the establish
ment of this old post, built first of logs
by the First Jtlfle Regiment, which
came In '40 to this Coast. It was re-
built in 1S56-S7-S8. and now. after the
ravages of time, the desecration of the
careless and the usual misfortunes
which attend unoccupied premises, this
building is the only one left of the
officers' quarters of Old Fort Dalles.
"The Government reserve consisted
originally of a tract of land ten miles
square. As emigrants arrived and the
land commended itself for homes and
settlement, this was cut down to a
piece five miles square, and as the
necessities of the post were not in
proportion to the size of the reserve,
it was again reduced to one mile
"The cost of building ran up into
hundred of thousands of dollars, and
as mill machinery, etc.. had to be
brought around Cape Horn, and trans
ported up the Columbia in very primi
tive and small steamers, time and
money were consumed.
"The garrison was occupied until the
breaking out- of the rebellion, when
the soldiers were, ordered East. For
about twenty years It was looked after
by Louis Fritz, who was paid by the
Government, and then tt was laid out as
Fort Dalles Military Addition to Dalles
City, the streets dedicated to the city
and the lots appraised and sold. The
appraisement varied and that on the
houses on the premises was very high.
"The first efTort to secure this building
was made In a little literary society of
ladles and gentlemen called 'The Taine
Class," of which Jay P. Lucas was a
member, and lie was also one of the
officials In the United States Land Office.
He was appointed to open correspondence
with the Department of the Interior in
regard to securing this building for the
use of the .Taine Society. A voluminous
correspondence ensued, which came to
naught. The building was appraised at
Jll'Xi, and a reduction from this amount
did not make it possible to secure It, so
the matter was-dropped.
"The next effort was begun by the
Sorosis Club, May 5. 1903, when I .was
appointed to look into the matter and
ascertain what could be accomplished.
' The Sorosis was greatly disappointed to
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find it could not hold property, not being
an Incorporated body.
"The next Idea was to get it as city
property, bit on investigation it was
found -that any city council could sell It
at any time, the ladles in the 9orosi
being powerless in the matter. I then
took a trip to Portland to interview the
officers and directors of the Oregon State
Historical Society. Judge Bellinger, who
was then president. Secretary Himes. and.
in fact, all connected with the society;
were much interested, and ofTered to hoid
the property for us and also to use their
influence in Washington. D. C in secur
ing this property, which we found must
be done by a special act of Congress.
"Fortunately, our fellow-townsman, J.
X. Williamson, was then a' delegate, so
we invited him to meet a committee of
Sorosis at the building and look over the
situation. Mr. Williamson became much
interested at once, and went actively to
work on-his return to Congress, with the
result that it was donated to the Oregon
Historical Society in 1901. The society at
once appointed a committee of custo
dians, consisting of Mrs.. William Shackel
ford, Mrs. C. J. -Crandall, Mrs. W. Lord,
Mrs. John Marden and S. L. Brooks. Dr.
Belle C. Ferguson has since replaced Mr.
Brooks on this committee. The commit
tee has been reappointed each year since
"Out of this' committee has grown the
local auxiliary the Old Fort Dalles
Historical Society working under the
constitution and by-laws of the state so
ciety, and the custodian committee com
prises the following officers of the society:
President, Mrs. Shackelford; first vice
president, Mrs. Lord; second vice-president,
Mrs. Marden; secretary. Mrs. C. J.
Crandall; treasurer, Dr. Belle C. Fergu
son. "We have fulfilled all our hopes and
friends have arisen on all sides of us.
We have expended by their help about
$1000 on tb.9 property, and have most ef
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THE SUNDAY OREGOMAX, PORTLAND. JULY 11, .1909.
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ficient aid from. Mr. Paddock and wife,
who reside in the building, and are al
ways found to be courteous and helpful
to the many strangers visiting the
"Our membership is large, consisting,
first, of the active members any member
of the state society is eligible as an active
member by paying an annual fee of $2,
and has the privilege of bringing in an
associate member. Added to these Is a
long list, of honorary members, which
brings in no fees, but much valuable In
terest and bits of early history, from
time to time, and often substantial aid.
as on this occasion, as you will see by the
letters our secretary will presently read.
This honorary list also preserves a record
of the names of our early pioneers.
"We have celebrated four birthdays
since the new birth of old Fort Dalles
took place in 1904. The first was in the
form of a reception to the public, after
repairs and renovation of the building had
been made, and those of you who remem
ber In former years the appearance of
this forlorn, grimy old structure must
certainljvnotice a marked contrast in ap
pearance now. The second birthday was
celebrated with a china shower, so that
our cupboard could be supplied with china
for serving our friends with refreshments
after a long, uphill walk. The third was
a silver shower of 25-cent pieces, and to
day another silver shower of larger de
nomination, and, judging from the secre
tary's table, I- think it has been quite a
storm after the long dry spell.
"This shower Is to help us in the pay
ment of what we owe on the piece of
ground recently purchased, lying west of
the building. We thank you sincerely for
your liberal donations and your helpful
and cheery presence here today."
Many men of prominence in their day
were connected either directly or indi
rectly with the old fort. General Ulysses
S. Grant, who later became President of
the United States, once visited the fort
on a tour of Inspection, but he was never
a hfiy Mime iSiM
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stationed here. The bodies of the ex- !
President and his wife now - lie In a
mausoleum on Riverside drive. New York
City, which was built 1892-1897, at a cost
General 9herldan came to the relief of !
Major Haller against the Yakimas In the
late Fall of 1S55, crossing the Columbia
The Rifle Regiment came to Oregon in
1849. and to Fort Dalles in May, 1850.
Governor T. I. Stevens, of Washington
territory, outfitted here before leaving for
the treaty grounds of Walla Walla, in
155. Major Rains providing him wilh a
squad of soldiers as a guard, under Lieu
tenant Grade. Guests of this party were
Lieutenant Kip. a son of Bishop Kip. the
first bishop of California, and Hazzard
Stevens, a son of Governor' Stevens, then
a lad of 13, now General Stevens, of Bos
ton. From Fort Dalles Colonel Wright went
out on his famous expedition Into the
Spokane country In 1R58. when he subdued
all the tribes of the great "Inland Em
pire." opening in the Fall of that year
this great country to settlement, which
had been closed for some ye"ars.
Dr.- Hammond was one of the surgeons
at the. fort in 1836, eminent afterwards in
San Francisco and New York City, and at
one time Surgeon-General in Washington,
Bishop 9cott. the pioneer bishop of the
Episcopal Church, baptized an infant, the
son of Captain Whittlesey, at the sur
geon's quarters In the Spring of 1S61. the
reverend gentleman being entertained at
dinner. There is no doubt the first of
ficial act of the Episcopal Church at The
Louis Scholl. the architect of the gar
rison buildings when the old log quar
ters were replaced with frame structures
during 1856, "57 and '58. came to Oregon in
September. 1852. and !s now living In
Walla Walla. Wash., at the ripe old age
of SO. He was alo the architect and
builder of Forts Walla Walla. Simcoe and
Theodore Winthrop. author of "Canoe
and Saddle." who came to the fort in 1853
as a correspondent for an Eastern news
paper, was stricken with smallpox on his
WORK OF T(1 EL HISTORICAL SOCIETY TOWARD
PRESERVING AN OREGON LAND MARK AND
RELICS OF AN IMPORTANT MIUTARY POST
OCAXrCy-Cm!? . w m m
arrival and cared for in the old log quar
ters. Winthrop later was made a major
in the regular armv and was killed at the
battle of Bethel, in Virginia, at the first
volley, during the Civil ,War.
Commanding officers stationed at the
fort were: Major Tucker, of the First
Rifle ' Regiment, in 1SSO; Captain Alvord.
of the Fourth United States Infantry, who
later earned the title of major, then gen
eral; Major Rains, to the time of Major
G. O. Haller In 1853. and Colonel Wright,
of the Ninth United States Infantry In
The collection at old Fort Dalles is va
ried, ranging from the time of the red
man's supremacy to the present, and is
Jealously guarded by the society, not be
cause of Its Intrinsic value, but for Its
association with the early history of
Wasco County and the relatives of many
of the members.
On entering the grounds one sees an old
Indian canoe, simply the trunk of a tree,
some 20 feet In length, and said to have
been hollowed out with fire and dressed
with sharp stones, by the red men long
before carpenter tools were brought to
this country by their white brethren. A
few paces to the right is a rustic settee
connecting two giant pine trees. Secure
ly fastened to each 'tree Is a tablet In
memory of two of Wasco County's great
men In the early days. One reads: "J. G.
Wilson, tirst judge of this district,- Jus
tice of Supreme Court, Representative in
Congress." The other. "James K. Kelly,
first Mayor of this city. Justice of Su
preme Court, United States Senator."
Inside the old building the pioneer is
carried back to by-gone days by his sur
roundings and the younger generation
call up scenes of the primitive West in
their imagination. Numbers of relics of
Indian warfare greet the eye and articles
of usefulness In camp life have prominent
One of this collection considered price
less by the society is a file of "The Moun
taineer," donated by John Michell. This
file covers a long period of years, is full
of historical data., and Is valuable in re
The original plans and specifications.
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from which the garrison buildings were
erected, a gift from Architect Louis
Scholl, are framed and adorn the walls,
their architectural beauty claiming the
attention and admiration of the visitor.
The first coal oil lamp, to be brought to
The Dalles, and old table made of native'
woods and used at the post in the '50s. a
collection of Indian curios in stone and
wood carving and numerous other relics
are other gifts from Mr. Scholl.
To the collection of china has been add
ed an old sui?ar bowl, handed down from
Father Mesplie's mission, below town,
where now is the grandstand at the fair
One relic, not fully appreciated, is a
section of the old "witness" tree, from
which all early surveys were made. It is
to be regretted that the old sentinel was
ever sacrificed, but it was not generally
known how valuable historically
this old pine tree was. It was
visible for miles and noticeable on ac
count of the limbs from one side having
been cut away. A grand old monarch of
the forest, that should always have held
sway over its historic domain.
Some ancient firearms, flint locks, etc.,
are on exhibition, and an aboriginal
plank of cedar from a mimaloose (dead)
house on the Island 15 miles below The
Dalles, shows traces of Its firing, as it
was burned into shape. It is slightly
carved and forms a most Interesting
study in ethnology.
A heavy brass key to the iron safe
In Sheridan's quarters oij the Grand
Rondo reservation, used during Sheri
dan's occupancy until the outbreak of the
Civil War. and a sword which ha.l seen
service at Shiloh and Gettysburg are
valued accessories. The sword was pre
sented by Mrs. E. M. Wilson, who said
it had been given to her husband. Judge
J. G. Wilson, in 1867. by a soldier named
Behr, whom the Judge had rendered
A case of curios from the Philippine
Islands is catalogued and always has
its share of attention alongside an old
melodeon, one of the first brought to
A flag of an early date bears no bul
let marks, but is a memento of a Grant
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and Colfax ctflebration held in The Dalles.
C. J. Crandall and Monroe Grimes are th
only "boys" h'ft now of the small bri
gade that helper! to bear it aloft.
A copy of the bill, which passed both
houses of Congr.JFs. giving the property
to the State Historical Society, .al
wavs claims the attention of the thought
ful. Alongside the likenevses of many local
pioneers, the benign face of Dr. John
Mcl-oughlin. said to be framed in apple
wood from one of the hdsSoric apple trees
planted at Fort Vancouver ajid raised
from seed brought by the doctor from
London in 18'Jl. looks down upon the
visitor, who is ever welcome.
The people of The Dallevs take great
interest in the work of the old Fort
Dalles Historical Society in. its efforts
to save the only remaining .building of
the post for future generations and one
of the first places the tourist is taken is
the old surgeon's quarters, where a fine
view of the beautiful Columbia may be
secured wini the snow-capped peak of
Mount Adams in the distance.
The Dalles. Or.. July 12.
ODD TANGLE OVER WEDDING
(rtTiniiii Count First Declared In
sane and Then Called Sane.
BERLIN. July 10. (Special.) Strange
litigation is proceeding over the affairs
of the eldest son and heir of Count
George van Erbach. head of an enormous
ly rich ; family, which had the right to
Intermarry on equal terms with the sov
ereign houses of Europe.
The Count's son and heir. Hereditary
Count Erasmus von Erbach. four years
ago nfarried. in Indon. the daughter of
a washerwoman, one Dora Fisher. The
father, after prolonged litigation, suc
ceeded in getting his son declared In
sane, upon which the marriage was an
nulled, and the son put under tutelage.
The Erbach house is governed by rigid
family laws, which are guarded by a
council of relatives. The relatives are
now trying to deprive Count Erasmus of
his rights as heir, which include a for
tune estimated at from 1.000.000 to 5.000.
They allege that the old Count shows
undue partiality for his son. and should
have deprived him of all his rights. In
stead, he first had him declared insane
in order to annul the marriage, and has
i now proved him sane and had him re
leased irom tne asylum.
Artful Young Barney Keboe.
T. A. Daly in Catholic Standard and Times
W ill ye be for the c;ap o' ounloe.
Oh! I'm glad o' that Fame!
All the tourists think, shame
To be mipsiii' the Gap o' Dunloe
They do so.
Now then, whisper! Mayhap
When ye come on the Gap
Ye'll he Ke.ln' a laaR
On this side o' the pass
That'll ax for the toll.
k. She's a dacint Rood soul.
. Though the eyes of her twinkle so droll.
Well. ye'U pay her the tax
'An' ye'll wink an' ye'll ax:
"Would ye marry young Barney Kehoe?"
Tls a bit of a Joke
That the folk love to poke
At the lass o the Gap o'-Dunloe.
An it's where, whistye've done wid Dunloe,
Will ye go?
Ye'll be wise to come hack
Bvi this very same thrack.
Fur Vhere little that's back o' Dunloe
There is so.
SureV the hills are so bare
There's no scenery there
I.Ike the kind that e find
On thV- slrte, d'ye mind?
Pf. I'll w-ateh for the day "
Whin yv're pajln this way
Jit-t to Uar what the lass had to say.
Whin shrt made her reply
To the wVtk o' yer eye
An' yer joke. at the Gap o Dunloe
Is it who rrMy I be ?
Ye'll find mn d'y see.
If ye'U ax for young Barny Kehoe.