The Oregon statesman. (Salem, Or.) 1916-1980, March 28, 1931, Page 19, Image 19

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    Oregon City, Ore., March 28, 1851 Salem. Ore., March 28. 1931
Page Nink
His Home in '506 Marked
Start of . Town - to
'South of Here
Sixteen miles sojath. of Salem,
along the east bank of'1 the San
tiam river, lies the ltjttle city of
Jefferson, -which was built on the
Jacob Comer and James R. Bates
donation land - claims. In the ear
ly 5 0's the town was started."
James R. Bates, jrather -of Mrs.
Julia Ann ; Vaughn, cleared a
tract . et timber and brush and
built a nouse, the ; first one In
Jefferson. Soon -other settlers
came and established homes, and
what was once a tract of timber
soon became a' thriving' hamlet
Owing , to the : fertility of the
soil in the surrounding country,
the people .were attracted here.
In 1859 the old Jefferson Jnsti
tute was- built and as the popu
lation , of the - city Increased, the
building became too small to" ac
commodate the school, children,
so . the institute building . was
wrecked, with . the exception of
one wing, which is the postoffice
at the nrMtBt tlma. In 1899 a
new school nous ' was built and
lit ar two mora rooms wre add
ed to the building. -j . "
Biilie Thurraan was
First Espe Agent
In 18? a the Southern Pacific
depot was built, and Billie Thur
maa, a young man 18 years of
age,' waa the first operator.
Jefferson has a population of
about 400. In the city are four
churches, two general stores, two
garages, - meat - market, high ana
grde schools, a manufacturing
plant, three barber shops, tele
phone exchange, two confection
ery and lunch rooms, jewelry
store, two harness and shoe re
pair shops, a physician, funeral
director,- hardware store, four
service stations, blacksmith shop,
.hotel, " drug store, three - auto
camps and r a public library.
Wi hare demonstrated in the
past that Oregon possesses the
climate and toil for producing: the
very best quality' of flax fiber. Our
flax has been- shipped to Ireland
and been proved equal to the best
raised there. Correspondence S.
A. Clarke in 1874.
I .
H: J. Boock
Mr. H. J. Boock and family
moved to Salem from Iowa, July
Bf A la I Mill &tfflAi4 Aft . M
small fruit farm 4 miles south of
Salem, near Liberty, operating
same for 7 years.
Mr. Boock next moTed to Sal
em where he was employed with
the Peoples' Furniture Co. as
clerk. ,,ln 1181 Mr, Boock went
into business on his own account
opening the Liberty Exchange, a
new and used furniture business,
located on North Commercial St.
Later he moved to larger quart
ers at 371 North Commercial St.,
-where he la , now located. Mr.
Boock assures his many friends
that they can always depend on
a square deal at his store. His
stock consist of new and used
furatture. garden tools and other
twU. t.
There was' no railroad in the,
Willamette Valley until' eighteen j
years after The Statesman made
Its debut in 1851. In fact there
was 'no steam railroad at that
time anywhere la-four iter west
ern country.! C0TWd jvagoos,
winding their wy"oVer "the' ardu
ous "Oregon Trail" afforded-the
only means of 'travel west from
the Mltsoart- across xaoanUim
and plains' - into .'ih -v promised
land"- of the northwest.. Even
the- stage coach, now so roman
tically . associated with ; early
days of; the (west, had not yet
made its appearance as an es
tablished agency of transportation.-
: 'i'" .' '
In the early -sixties a few- miles
of narrow gauge railroad bad
been ' built along- the ;. Columbia
river for portage purposes
around cascades and falls, but
Oregon had no railroad of con
sequence until Ben Holladay, fa
mous In western history as stage
coach, steamship and - railroad
promoter, took hold of a floun
dering enterprise and during
1883-69 built the first unit of
the "project that was destined to
develop into the system of more
than 1400 miles of rail lines now
operated in this state by South
ern Pacific. ,
Combating ; winter floods that
washed away j bridges and under
mined track, Holladay ron in
"eleventh hour" struggle to meet
the government time limit. The
first rail was laid on October 28.
18(9, and on Christmas eve of
that year the first twenty-mile
section of the old Oregon Central
(East aide) line south from East
Portland , to Parrot Creek, near
the present town of New Era,
was ready for operation. Six
days later the locomotive "J. B.
Stephens" pulled the first excur
sion train over the road.
This event was hailed with en
thusiasm throughout the states
The building of a railroad con
necting Portland and San Fran
cisco had for. almost a decade
commanded ta attention of pro
gressive cltisens, particularly the
settlers In the isolated interior
valleys. River boats carried
shlpm. its up and down the Wil
lamette, but the wagon roads
over which farmers hauled their
produce "to the shipping points
on the river were practically im
passable during the rainy
months. With twenty miles of
the long, looked for railroad now
completed it wasconfidently ex
pected that three or four years,
at the most, would see the entire
road In operation. Yet 17 years
were to pass j before the "last
spike" in the railroad waa driven
at Ashland ini December. 1887.
connecting Oregon and Califor
nia. During the quarter of a cen
tury that elapsed from the time
the railroad was projected until
Its completion, there flashed
across the pages' of Oregon's
early history some of the West's
moat enterprising and colorful
personalities. Their struggle to
finance the surveying, building
and equipping of their rail lines;
their efforts to j sway popular fa
vor and gain (political recogni
tion: and their maneuvering to
hold personal j supremacy, com
bine to form inspiring chapters
in the chain 1 of events that
brought about the development
of transportation In the great
western valleys i of the state.
To Simon oj." Elliott, ' Joseph
Gaston. Ben Holladay, Henry Vil
la rd. Richard Koehler. Wm. Reid.
Col. T. Edgerton Hogg and Louis
Gerllnger belongs the greatest
share of credit for launching and
developing the various projects
that in later years -ere carried
to I completion by E. H. Harrl
raan. Collls P. Huntington. Le
land Stanford' and Charles
Crocker. The latter three men.
with Mark Hopkins, founded the
Central - Pacific la California
(parent organisation of the
Southern Pacific) and during
1863-89 built the western link
of jthe first transcontinental rail
road. I .
DuMng 1868-84 Elliott and
Oaston made surveys north from
Jacksonville to Portland atoj the
Celambla river, i Orston's survey
ran through Corvallis and Day
ton on the west side of the Wil
lamette fiver. The Oregon -Cen
tral Railroad company, which he
Incorporated In November. 1836.
was commonly kno.v.n as th3
"west side" company, while the
company of the same name In
corporated in April, 1867. 'to
build along the route surveyed
by Elliott through 'Salem and .Al
bany on the opposite side of the
river, was known as the "east
side" company. The latter com
pany had Its headquarters in Sa
lem. Offices of the rival com
pany were in Portland. i'Asso
clated with Elliott in the "east
side" company were several men
prominent In Salem's early his-
tory. Including I. R. Moores, J.
D. Smith, E. N. Cooke. Sam'l. A.
Clarke and John H. Moores.:
Qaston'a com pa- received Its
support from PortlanB, where its
terminus was to be located,! and
from farmers on the west side of
the valley,, through which region
the road would be built. I The
"east side" company, with! its
terminus in East Portland and
line projected along the east 'side
of the river, found its staunChest
friends In Salem, Albany and
Both .companies "broke
ground" In April. 1868. The
"west aiders" staged their event
at- the upper end of Fourth
street in Portland, near the toot
of Marquam hJll. The "east ald
ers" began their grading on Old
eon Tlbbet's farm, not far from
where the railroad shops in
Brooklyn are now located.
The financial aid and aggres
sive leadership brought by Hol
laday to the "east side" company
won the final victory and - In
1870 the "west side" organisa
tion was absorbed by Holladay'
new Oregon and California Bail
road company. It was under! the
name of this latter company that
the remainder of the original
main line was built through the
Willamette, Umpqua and Rogue
river valleys, j
After having completed the
first unit of the road from East
Portland to Parrot creel:, win
ning the government land grant.
Holladay suspended work until
the following summer. Early in
August of 1870 Chief Engineer
Hans Th!el?en had a grade ready
beyond Salem. ack laying
started In that month and j by
September 5 the second twenty
mile section was in operation to
Waconda (now Gervals). On
that day the company published
its first time table showing two
daily trains, "consisting of pas
senger and construction cars,"
making the forty mile run from
East Portland in three hours and
ten minutes.
New passenger coaches of "ele
gant defttgn .with seats uphol
stered in crimson velvet ; lush,"
were placed in service on Sep
tember 29, when the road waa
opened to the fairgrounds near
Salem. Omnibuses and coaches
met! the trains and carried pas
sengers into Salem. The road
was! completed to the Salem de
pot ion October 11.
during the annual state fair
held that month, the railroad
was a great attraction. "The toot
of a locomotive whistle any hour
of the day," stated one news
paper, "never falls to start
crowds of sightseers towards the
tracks. The arrival or departure
of a train la watched by hun
dreds of people who never, saw
that style of 'wagon before.!
Trains were operated Into Jef
ferson on November 17, 1870,
and! on December 8 a special
train carried HO '-ivited guewts
frora- -ortIand."r Best Pprtland
Oregon City and- Salem to Al
bany, where. the people celebrat
ed the arrival' of the' railroad
and paid tribute to Ben Holla
day. Regular -passenger- service
was - not established, however,
until Christmas day. Rainy wea
ther halted construction work tor
several "weeks and it -was? not
until June 25, 1871, that the
first! train .was operated toHar
risbnrg. When 'the-raUf dad "wai; Jri
operation to Eugena on .October
15, 171, a Portland- newspaper
atated: .Travel ; between- .P.ort?
land and. Sacramento will now be
158 miles by. rail and about 846
miles by -stage, 'the connection's
being made: at Eugene and Red
Bluff la California. . The time
between railroad terminals has
been four and. a half days, but
with, the setting In of the rains,
it is now, and probably will .re
main through the winter, at five
days and a half."' Steamer time
between: - San Francisco and
Portland was then about 84
From Eugene the railroad was
placed in operation to Oakland
on July 7, 1872;' and' to Rose
burg on December 8. Construc
tion .stopped there and no fur
ther work was-done on the road
for more -than eight years. Hol
laday bad exhausted his ' funds
and was on the verge of bank
ruptcy. The crash came in
April, 1873, and In the follow
ing year Henry Villard and
Richard Koehler came from Ger
many to take over the enterprise
in the interests of the foreign
In the meantime, construction
had been resumed on the "west
side" road out of Portland. The
first train was operated -to Hills
boro on, December 23,. 1871. and
on November 3 the following
year the road was completed to
St. Joseph, town long since
abandoned, which had "been es
tablished by Holladay on the
Yamhill river. There the termi
nus remained until January 25,
1880, when the line was com
pleted to Corvallis. by way of
McMinnville, under Villard'B
management. '
The twenty-mile line from Al
bany to Lebanon was built be
tween July and October, 1830.
In the name of the Albany and
Lebanon Railroad Co. Another
extension from the main line
was projected from Salem to SH
verton, but was abandoned when
the rival narrow gauge ' road
built Into the section.
In the seven .years after Vil
lard assumed directorship he ac
complished more than any one
man before his time, or possibly
since. In the advancement of Ore
gon's transportation .interests. His
principal activities were with
steamships on the pacific coast,
Columbia and Willamette rivers,
and with railroad building along
the Columbia river and- elsewhere
In the northwest, as well as car
rying on the projects started by
Gaston and Elliott south of Port
land. The magnitude and auda
city of .some of his undertakings
startled the financial world. Tet
even Villard had limitations and
in the end he gave way to' other
promoters. - ;
Construction of the Oregon and
California railroad was . rejumed
from Roseburg In June. 1881.
Trains were operated to Glendale
on May 13.' 18 88; to Grants Pas
on December X, 1883; through
Med ford to Phoenix on February
2R. 1RR4: and to Ashland on May
4. 1884. It was at this point that
VHIard's regime crashed. Ashland ".
was the terminal until Southern
Pacific acquired control and built
the-road over the Siskiyou to a
connection with line from Cali
fornia. 1 I
The final ceremony was staged
at the south end of the railroad
yard at Ashland on December 17.
1887. Special trains -from the
north and south brought delega
tions of prominent people from
both California and Oregon.
During the syears the old Ore
gon and California company was
building its line south from East
Portland, several other railroad'
companies made their appearance.
Most Important of these was the
Oregonian railway, which built a
system of narrow gauge lines dur
ing 1878-82 totaling 180 miles.
The road extended from Portland
on the west side of the Willam
ette to Sheridan, Dallas and Air
lie, and on the east side of the
river from Ray's Landing through
Woodburn. Sllverton and Browns
ville to Coburg. The company was
directed by William Reid and fi
nanced in its early stages by
Scotch capitalists, ie -became a
part of Southern Pacific in 1890
and was reconstructed to stand
ard gauge during the succeeding
three years.
:" Col. T. Edgerton Hoggswas an
other of the early railroad pro
moters. He proposed to make.
Taqulna bay the principal sea
port of the northwest and the
terminus of a ' railroad extending
across the state to ax connection
with the Union Pacific . or the
Central Pacific transcontinental
roads. He built a line from Ya
qulna through Corvallis and Al
bany to Idanha during 1886-89.
The enterprise was never a prof
itable one and went Into bank
ruptcy. It became a part of the
Southern Pacific in 1907.
Louis Gerllnger built a short
line from Dallas to Falls City and
Black Rock in 1903-5, which was
extended. to Salem in 1909. The
J. D. Spreckels interests operated
a line froi Marshfleld to Myrtle
Point in 1893 and proposed an
extension eastward across the
state by way of Roseburg to a
connection with the Union Pacif
ic. E. E. Lytle built from Hllls
boro to Tillamook In 1912. These
several properties later became a
part. of the present Southern Pa
cific system In Oregon. The Cooa
Bay territory was connected by a
line from Eugene built during
1914-18. Trains were first oper
ated through to Marshfleld on
April 5, 1918. Corvallis was giv
en direct connection with Eugene
on September 4, 1913, when trains
were first operated over an exten
sion which had been built from
Monroe, terminus of the former
Corvallis and Alsea River Railway
company. A short line between
Cook and Beaverton was opened
for traffic In July, 1917.
Announcement of the electrifi
cation of the Willamette valley
branches was made in 1912 and
through the agency of the Port
land, Eugene and Eastern and the
West Side and Newberg branches
were equipped ror eiPCine service
for which they were ready June
18, 1814. "The Portland, Eugene
and Eastern constructed the Can
by Molalla line, also the line
from Monroe to Eugene, and pur
chased the Willamette Falls line.
Salem, Albany and Eugene, elty
lines; Sheridan and Willamina
railroad. Corvallis and Alsea rail
road, all of which were turned
over to the railroad's Portland di
vision for operation In 1914-15.
During 19 28 the Southern Pa
cific completed one of the largest
railroad construction jobs under
taken in the west during recent
years when the new Cascade lln
betwee Black Butte. Cel.. and
Eugene, Ore., via Klamath. Falls,
was opened for traffic. This line
was originally projected by E. II.
Harrlman. Construction began at
Natron In 1909 and by May 1.
1912. the track was laid to Oak
ridge. In July, 1911, work was
begun" at Klamath Falls and by
September, 1912, the terminal of
the road had been extended to
Kirk. The world war and litiga
tion Involved In the famous Cen
tral Pacific unmerger case de
layed further cdnstruetion until
September, 1928. This new route,
which brings Klamath Fails 188
miles nearer to Salem and Port
land, and which affords train op
erating advantages superior to
the line over the Sisklyous, was
opened tor traffic on April 17,
1927. Peid Adv. 8. P. Co.