News of the Week, February 19 – 25

Oregon Spectator, February 19, 1846 (2nd issue printed)

On the east side of the Willamette, at the falls, the land is claimed by Dr. John McLoughlin, who laid out Oregon City in the year 1842. The many advantages presented for the growth and prosperity of a manufacturing city, is manifest to the most casual observer. We are informed that where Oregon City now stands, it was, three years ago, a dense forest of fir and underbrush. The march of improvement has been with gigantic stride. The city is now incorporated with a population of not less than 500 souls, and about eighty houses, to-wit: Two churches, two taverns, two blacksmith shops, two cooper shops, two cabinet shops, four tailor shops, one hatter shop, one tannery, three shoe shops, two silversmiths, and a number of other mechanics; four stores, two flouring and two saw mills, and a lath machine. One of the flouring and one of the saw mills, together with the lath machine, were erected and put in operation by a company of American citizens, associated together under the name of the “Oregon Milling Company,” and until within a few weeks past, the flouring mill was conducted as a public mill, grinding for settlers for a toll; it, however, has bee changed from doing custom work to that of exchange, giving a certain number of pounds of flour for a bushel of wheat. The mill owned by Dr. John McLoughlin has never done any custom grinding, but exchanges flour for wheat.

We are satisfied that the march of improvement would have been much greater at Oregon City, if nails and paints could have been obtained sufficient to meet the demands of the citizens.

Oregon City Enterprise, February 25, 1876

East Side Railway cars Bona and Kate passing on Main St. in Oreg

Pope’s Hall, 2nd floor of two story building behind streetcar. From Oregon Encyclopedia.

THE BALL – Quite a large number were present at Pope’s Hall on Tuesday night to celebrate the birthday of “the father of our country.” The festivities were kept up till a late hour. Mr. Chas. Bray, of Portland, assisted by our home talent, furnished music for the occasion, and all participants agree that a most delightful time was had. The supper, furnished at the Cliff House, was a repast with which the most epicurean could not fail to be satisfied.

JUSTICE COURT – John Trimbath and (Mr.) Humphrey were brought before Justice Athey, on Monday, charged with taking salmon from nets set in the river. Humphrey was tried by jury and acquitted. Trimbath was discharged on motion of attorney on part of the State.

NEW HOSE – On Tuesday last, four sections of the new carbolized hose purchased by our fire department were given a trial and gave satisfaction in every particular.

THE USUAL dance was held at Canemah on Saturday nigh, and other than there being about two gentlemen to every lady “all went merry as a marriage bell.”

FIREMENS’ ELECTION. – On Monday, the 6th prox., the election of our Chief Engineer and First Assistant of our city fire department will be held. As there is but one name before the “boys” to vote on for Assistant, no very grave doubts are entertained as to the result. The two candidates for Chief are good men and will make a close fight.

Oregon City Enterprise, March 10, 1876 – Report of the judges of Fireman’s election was read, reporting G. A. Harding having received thirty-four votes for Chief Engineer, and John Myers thirty votes for Chief Engineer; Hiram Cochran thirty-four votes for Assistant Chief Engineer; and J. M. Welch, thirty votes for Assistant Chief Engineer. On motion (of the City Council) G. A. Harding and Hiram Cochran were declared duly elected to the respective offices.

Oregon City Enterprise, February 28, 1896


Gilbert Stuart portrait of Washington, commonly reproduced for school rooms.



Appropriate Exercises at the City Schools – First Lesson in Patriotism

The children of the Eastham school observed Washington’s Birthday with appropriate exercises though no elaborate preparations were made for the occasion. By invitation the members of Meade Post No. 2, G. A. R., and the Ladies Aid Society were present as guests of the school.

The exercises began at 1 o’clock by the school falling in double column and marching down Seventh street to Jackson streets where they met the column of old soldiers and ladies of the Relief Corps, and after saluting them escorted them to the assembly room of the school building. The indoor program opened by the children singing “Hail Columbia” which was rendered with a will. The 2d grade class under Miss Spangler then sang “Sweet little Man” in a very pleasing manner. A recitation by W. Koerner, a bright, lithe boy of Miss Lawrence’s room greatly delighted the old soldiers and visitors. That sweet and inspiring song that for so long has been a popular favorite, “Mount Vernon Bells,” was splendidly rendered by Miss Baird’s class of little folks. The little tots of Miss Hankin’s room then sang, “Little George Washington” to the tune of Yankee Doodle in such a lively manner as to win a hearty applause. The recitation of Edna Caufield of Mrs. McAdam’s room was well rendered and the little miss was heartily applauded. Howard Brownell of the ninth grade, Prof. McAdam’s room, delivered an address on the life and work of Washington, which was his own composition, that would have been a credit to an older person. The song, “Sword of Bunker Hill” was finely rendered by Misses Kate Ward and Mabel Hannagan.

The Grand Army men were then called and on their behalf Commander C. A. Williams of Meade Post responded in a brief speech appropriate to the occasion, in which he spoke of the integrity and patriotism of Washington as an example worthy to be followed by all Americans. Capt. J. T. Apperson was then called on and gave a brief sketch of the early history of Oregon and of pioneer school days as experienced by him as a boy of 13 years. F. H. Beach, C. A. Dauchy and E. F. Grider gave an interesting account of their army experience. Mr. Grider graphically described the death of Col. E. D. Baker, of Oregon, who was killed at the battle of Ball’s Bluff.

The rooms were handsomely decorated and presented a very attractive appearance, prominent among the decorations being fine pictures of Washington, Lincoln and Grant, which had been purchased by the scholars. There was a large number of visitors present besides the invited guests and they were greatly pleased with the exercises, and complimented the teachers on the work of their pupils.

The way Washington’s birthday was celebrated on Friday last, by the pupils of the Barclay school, proved that the memory of that hero, is still green, and that nowhere in patriotic sentiment more manifest than in our public schools.

The assembly hall had been decorated for the occasion with flags, ferns and Oregon grape, and in a very prominent place hung a large picture of Washington which had been presented to the school by Dr. Carll in honor of the day. Many friends and patrons were present to show their appreciation of the children’s efforts.

Promptly at 10:30 a.m., the pupils from the several rooms marched to the assembly hall and carried out the following program:

  • Song – “Mount Vernon Bells” – School
  • Recitation – “Red, White and Blue” – Nettie Bradley, Vona Walker, Merle Wooddy
  • Song – “Washington’s Birthday” – 5th Grade Pupils
  • Recitation – “How Washington Looked” – Nellie Stafford
  • Hatchet Drill – Roy Miller, Roy Baxter, Stanley Herman
  • Song – “George Washington’s Hatchet” – 2nd Grade
  • Recitation – “George Washington’s Cherry Tree” – Oiler
  • Recitation – “George Washington” – six 3rd Grade Girls
  • Recitation – “George Washington” – Six 1st Grade Boys

Little Alexander Oiler recited a piece in which he seemed to have discovered that Washington lacked one thing, for

“Although he beat the British,
And drove them in a hole,
He never made a touchdown,
And never kicked a goal.”

Director J. W. Noble responded to a call for a speech, and among other things said, “We should always take Washington as an example of truthfulness.”

Dr. Carll made a very appropriate speech. In speaking of the game of football to be played the next day, he said, “Whatever you do, play a fair game. A victory is something to be proud of, but in an honest defeat there is no disgrace.”

After a few remarks by Rev. Rugg, the school sang “America,” which closed the exercises.

Oregon City Enterprise, February 25, 1916


Justice of the Peace Sievers is Principal Loser in Blaze Started by Stub

Fire Chief Frost Sees His Own Office Go Up In Smoke

One Man is Hurt When Passing Street Car Forces Hosecart Upon Curbing

Fire Found Next to Movie House

Two fires hit Oregon City Wednesday in the short space between 3 o’clock in the afternoon and 11 o’clock that night, and damage totaling $2525 was done. J. E. Fisher, who was standing on the curbing on Main street between Seventh and Sixth was hurt when a streetcar forced a hosecart against him.

A summary of the fire losses follows:

Schram estate – $25
John N. Sievers – $2050
Gustav Freywald – $500

The first fire was discovered about 3 o’clock in the afternoon in a vacant building next to the Grand theatre. Manager Schram put out the fire with the aid of chemical extinguishers and a small hose. It was caused by a defective flue.

The Fountain hose company responded to the first call. J. E. Fisher, a painter working in the 5, 10 and 15 cent store was standing on the curb watching the firemen rush by when he was hit by a hose cart and knocked to the ground.

He was taken to the office of Dr. Orel Welsh and his wounds dressed. He has a deep gash in his face and his nose is broken.

Fire Chief Frost declares that a car which followed closely behind the hose cart is responsible for the injury, and said late Wednesday that he intended to learn the name of the motorman and have him arrested. According to the statement of the head of the fire department, the car was following close behind the hose cart and forced it up on the curb.

The second fire did considerably more damage. It was discovered about 10:30 o’clock by Patrolman George Woodward in the rear of the office of Justice of the Peace Sievers. Men from the Fountain hose company responded to the call and a few minutes after the alarm was sounded were at work on the blaze.

Justice of the Peace Sievers was the principal loser. He estimated his loss at $2000 of which about one-third is covered by insurance.

The cause of the second blaze has not been determined. A number of possible causes of the fire have been suggested. Justice of the Peace Sievers is not inclined to believe that the blaze was caused by defective wiring or by an overheated stove. The blaze may have been caused by a carelessly thrown cigar or cigarette stub.

Recent records of the justice court were save, and the docket was pulled from the fire.

Fire Chief Frost, who is also constable, fought the fire and at the same time watched his own office, which is with Justice Sievers, burn.

Two Japanese, Jim Yommamoto and Yama, lived on the second floor of the building but they said Wednesday night that their loss was slight.

In both fires the volunteer firemen responded within a few minutes from the time the alarm was sounded. The Freywald building is a frame structure and for a time threatened to make a warm blaze, but was under control a few minutes after the firemen arrived.


Mrs. Margaret Martin, of Willamette, is seriously ill at the Oregon City hospital as a result of an automobile accident near the east approach of the suspension bridge Saturday morning.

She was struck by an automobile driven by W. B. Portouw and pinned against an iron railing on the north side of the Andresen building on Seventh and Main Streets. So securely was she caught that it was necessary to pull the car away before she could be removed. Dr. Hempstead was called and took her to the hospital.

Dr. Hempstead said Saturday night that his patient was rapidly rallying from the shock, and that he did not believe there were serious internal injuries, as reported Saturday afternoon.

Portouw was arrested by Chief of Police Blanchard on a charge of violating the town’s traffic ordinances, pleading guilty before Recorder Lorder and was fined $50. He was driving fast, and was on the wrong side of the bridge. His father recently bought a store at Greensburg, Washington county, and he was on his way from Mount Pleasant to their new home.

Mrs. Martin and Miss Cora Hunt were crossing the bridge when they encountered Portouw. He apparently lost control of the car, swung around to the left side of the bridge, narrowly missing Miss Hunt and hit Mrs. Martin.

Mrs. Martin is the wife of Mathew Martin and the mother of five children. She is a sister of William McLarty, of Oregon City, and is well known here.


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