End of an Old Year, Beginning of a New…

Oregon Spectator, January 2, 1851

lot whitcombLaunching of the Lot Whitcomb.

The launching of a steamboat, such as the capacity of the one that heads this article, was something new in the Territory. We have been informed that it was participated in by a large number of person, residents and strangers. Christmas was truly a proud day for Milwaukie. We regret to state that the death of a very estimable man occurred, the Star says that Capt. F. Morse of the schooner Merchantman, while in the act of touching fire to a cannon, was instantly killed by the bursting of the piece which was blown into atoms and fragments scattered about for some distance – injuring no one, however, but Capt. Morse. A fragment of the gun struck him in the neck below the jaw, carrying away one-half of the contents of the neck, breaking the vertebrae of the neck and lower jaw bone. Thus it ever is, with us mortals, truly “in the midst of life we are in death.” Capt. Morse was a man who had acquired many warm friends here; and whom a short acquaintance with, had strongly prepossessed us in his favor – and his untimely fate has cast a gloom over our mind which we cannot easily dispel. He leaves a family, we understand, at Newberg, North Carolina.

This being the day for launching this new and beautiful Steamer, which has been built here, within the last few months, naturally called together a large assemblage of people from the surrounding country, to witness the launch of a steamer, the product of enterprise and energy of one of our most worthy citizens, which must be of incalculable benefit to the interests of Oregon.

At about 3 o’clock P. M. everything being in readiness, and a goodly number on board, she was cut loose from her fastenings, and slid from the stocks into the water, like a meteor from the heavens. Everything being so well arranged, she went off safely without any straining of the boat, or any other damage or accident.

Great credit is due to the constructor, Wm. L. Hanscom, for the fine model, and the workmanlike manner in which she has been built; and also for the nice arrangements perfected for the safe and expeditious launch, which we had the pleasure of witnessing.


Oregon Argus, December 29, 1855


The river is blocked up with ice, so that the ferry boats and steam boats are all laid up. We fear we shall not get off any mail till the weather changes.


Oregon City Enterprise, December 29, 1866


Notice is hereby given, that Sealed proposals will be received by the subscribers until Saturday the 5th day of January 1867, for the construction of a plank walk from the intersection of the breakwater with the railroad. [by Smith’s Foundry,] up to the old storehouse in Canemah, [now occupied by Morfitt & Co.] The walk to be of sound two inch lumber, thirty-two inches wide, and laid down in a substantial manner, on cross ties, four by four inches square, and spiked to the railroad cross ties. The walk to be laid down in the center of the railroad until it reaches a point near the old Foundry in Canemah, where it is to cross the road to the left, and follow the line of the lots on the left hand side of Front street, in Canemah, to the upper termini, opposite Morffit’s store. Parties who bid to furnish all material required, and the work to be completed in two weeks from the sealing of the contract.

Joseph D. Locey, John R. Coburn, Jacob Wortman, Committee


Oregon City Enterprise, January 3, 1896


The year 1896 is brighter in promise than any year for some time past. The crops of the country have been abundant. The industrial and financial conditions have better prospects of a return to normal conditions, congress having started in to give the legislation so badly needed to restore public confidence and credit, and stern necessity will probably force President Cleveland to sanction its acts. Our trade with South and Central America promises to receive a great impetus as a result of the enforcement of the Monroe doctrine by the United States, and our trade with the Asiatic countries is increasing at a most flattering rate.

The development of the Northwest has been going steadily along, despite the hard times, and now with a return of better times an era of prosperity will come to use that will put Oregon in the front rank of states.

To Oregon City the outlook is all that the most sanguine could ask. The year ’96 is sure to be one of the best in the history of our city, and the growth of ’96 will be more than doubled in the year to come.



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