History of the Pacific Northwest
Oregon and Washington 1889
Volume II
Page 96 - 116
Page 117 - 137
 

Copyright 1999 - 2003 - Janine M. Bork
 This page is part of the Union County, OR AHGP



CHAPTER LXI.

The Pacific Northwest as It Is To-day - Geographical Outline - Rivers and Harbors - Agricultural Resources - Timber Resources - Live-Stock
Interests - Fisheries - Mineral Resources

GEOGRAPHICAL OUTLINE.

A Land grand, beautiful and interesting in its scenic features; vast and varied in its resources; romantic, thrilling and politically momentous in its history; with a people self-reliant, intelligent and generous; a land great in its past, greater yet in the promise of its future, - such is Oregon, thirty-third in order of admission of the states, fifth in area, westernmost in position, most isolated and remote from the great centers of population, last to be reached by the great railway lines, the wilderness child of the American family of commonwealths. And with Oregon is to be joined in history and natural character and present development her sisters, Washington and Idaho, the former of which, while these pages are in preparation, has been invited to join her light to the galaxy of states, and the latter of which may rest assured that the time is near at hand when she, too, will be born into statehood.

     In the first volume of this work the history of the human actors in the development of the Pacific Northwest has been narrated. We have briefly depicted the fortunes of the twilight race of aborigines whom the full rising sun of civilization seems inexorably to waste away. We have with explorers threaded the untrodden cañons, and been tossed on the foamy rivers. We have with fur hunters braved hungry reefs and bars and yet more savage men, and with them, too, gloated over shiploads of glossy furs, worth their weight in gold. With the advance guard of immigration, we have made the weary march over interminable plains, camped in wild defiles, whence savage eyes of men and beasts have watched us in the darkness, hollowed the hasty grave for some worn emigrant, taking the first rest of a lifetime, and at last have gazed wit them from some Cascade height upon their promised land. We have been with them again as cabin smoked and blood streamed from the sudden foray of the savage assailant. We have watched, too, their entrance into peace and progress and commercial and political importance. But there is a history of our Pacific Northwest, not yet written, which so far antedates all its human modifications that they seem in comparison but a bubble on the sea of time.

     This is a history of elemental forces, volcanic, aqueous, glacial and climatic, which built our mountains, scooped out our valleys, ground the rocks into soil, cracked the backbone of mountain chains, and confronted the ocean with unending forests. We shall not undertake such a task as the presentation of this great theme in these pages, but will simply set before you in order some of the most marked and important results of this infinite series of sequences, to the end that the present physical condition of the great region which our work describes may be plain, and that the subsequent chapters detailing the industries and the unfoldings of enterprise may thus have their proper introduction and comprehension.

     The present State of Oregon is but a small part of the imperial domain which first received that name, once the ultima thule of the adventurous spirits of the border, and the land of promise to the hardy pioneer, won by blood from the native inhabitants, and by the settler's axe and the emigrant wagon from the greedy nations of Europe. The old Oregon Territory embraced the present limits of Oregon, Washington, Idaho, and the western third of Montana. It contained nearly three thousand square miles of land. It may be practically spoken of as the valley of the Columbia. It lies between latitude forty-two and forty-nine, is bounded on the east by the Rocky Mountains, and on the west by the Pacific Ocean. Its mountain chains give it a peculiar configuration and a remarkable variety of climate. The eastern border is marked by the multiplied spurs of the Rocky Range, and its western by the "continuous woods" with which the comparatively low and rounded Coast Range fronts the Great Ocean. Extending throughout this Columbia valley, from north to south, is the narrow, towering range of the Cascades. This range is the northern prolongation of the Sierras of California, and constitutes the most remarkable, as well as most influential, physical feature of the entire coast. It divides the Pacific Northwest into two natural sections, totally different in climate, appearance and natural productions.

     The Cascade Mountains are extraordinary for their narrowness, being at most points not more than fifty miles wide, as well as for their general uniformity in height, averaging about five thousand feet, and their almost exclusively volcanic character. They are remarkable, too, for the lofty volcanic cones which

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rise from them at almost regular intervals. These are in order, beginning on the north, with their heights given in round numbers: Baker, ten thousand feet; Ranier (1), fourteen thousand, four hundred and forty; St. Helens, nine thousand, seven hundred and fifty; Adams, thirteen thousand, three hundred; and then, crossing into Oregon, Hood, eleven thousand, two hundred and twenty-five; Jefferson, ten thousand; Three Sisters, highest about nine thousand, five hundred, and lowest about eight thousand, five hundred; Diamond Peak, Thielson, Scott, the heights of which are not so accurately known, but probably do not vary much from nine thousand feet; and last of all, towering above the Klamath Lakes and looking over into California, Mount Pitt, which is nearly eleven thousand feet high. From this enumeration it appears that there are thirteen great peaks, four in Washington and nine in Oregon, of which the average height is about ten thousand feet. Besides these there are dozens of lesser heights, many of which are not even named, which attain a height of seven thousand feet. The entire Cascade Range is one tremendous mass of volcanic rock. The primeval granite is found in patches here and there underneath the flood of lava. The great peaks are in only a dormant state of volcanic energy, and show by their uneasy heaving from time to time the presence of the earth-giant chained beneath. Hood, St. Helens and Ranier, in particular, have had outbursts frequently since the settlement of the country. In 1835 and 1842, St. Helens had tremendous explosions. A river of stiffened lava, fifteen miles long and half a mile wide, is now found on the south side of the mountain; and in it are yet to be seen the twisted and half-consumed tree trunks at some time overwhelmed. Everywhere throughout the entire extent of these mountains are to be found stupendous craigs of basalt, amygdaloid, and trachyte, and wide areas of pumice-stone and heaps of ashy desolation, the emptied slag of earth's primeval furnaces, evidences of a volcanic energy which must have some time made the earth tremble.

     Geologists believe that after the era of fire came one of flood. Vast seas were imprisoned by the upheaval of the Rocky and Cascade Ranges. The first of these great seas covered the Arizona basin, and was drained by the Colorado river, which, to do its work, cleft the great plateau to the depth of five thousand feet. The second covered Utah and part of Nevada, and has been removed by evaporation; all except Great Salt Lake, which remains as a sample. The Columbia Sea, much larger than either of the others, tended south into Nevada and north far into British Columbia. It burst the Cascade barrier at the point where the Columbia now flows. Its enormous bed thus became an open plain, and from the mountain heights rivers began to make their way across it downward towards the sea. Inasmuch as the great plain was at an average elevation above the sea of two thousand feet, the new-born rivers soon trenched out deep channels, while their tributaries repeated the process laterally on a smaller scale. thus the valley became grid-ironed with cañons; and thus was gradually developed the hilly character which it now has. The great basin of the upper Columbia, thus formed, is practically a plain, though hilly in places, except for the Blue Mountains, which rise like a huge lump in the very middle of it. It looks as though they had more matter than they knew what to do with, and so dumped it in the middle. This curious, triangular, many-valleyed mass of mountains is, however, of almost computeless value to Eastern Oregon and Southeastern Washington; for without them the now fertile prairies of Umatilla and Walla Walla, and the adjoining regions, would be rainless and desolate. The Salmon River Mountains of Idaho are a practical continuation of the Blue Mountains, though sundered from them by the profound chasm of the Snake river. The two ranges separate the vast plains of the middle and upper Snake from Eastern Oregon and Washington in much the same way that they themselves are separated from their western sections. It does not make so marked a difference, however, in climate and productions; for the regions east of the Blue Mountains, though drier and colder than those west, have still essentially the same characteristics.

     That portion of Oregon, lying south of the parallel of the Blue Mountains and east of the Cascades, is frequently called the lake country; and indeed one of the counties of that section is named Lake county. It is a rolling, treeless land, with scanty rainfall, almost uninhabited except by cattlemen and their enormous herds. Its apparent desolations are relieved by a number of large and beautiful lakes, such as the Klamath Lakes, which reach the sea through the river of the same name, and Summer, Abert, Christmas, harney and Malheur Lakes, which have no outlets. The northern boundary of the great "Inland Empire" (as the upper Columbia valley is frequently called) is marked by a tangled wilderness of mountains, almost unexplored and unnamed, throughout which the Okanagan, Kootenai and Clark's rivers cut their way. Tot he northeast are the spurs of the Rockies, the Coeur d'Alene, Pen d'Oreille, and Bitter Root Ranges. These ranges make Northern idaho almost entirely a mountainous country, though along its extreme western border are some of the richest farming lands in the whole Columbia valley. These fertile tracts lie along the headwaters of Hangman creek, of the Palouse, and the course of the Clearwater. The rugged chain of the Salmon River Mountains, already alluded to, makes so complete a separation between Northern and Southern Idaho that it is reported that members of the legislature from the former region have sometimes had to go to the capital, Boise, by way of San Francisco; and even at the best they have to go by way of Umatilla and Baker City in Oregon The stupendous Teton spurs of the Rockies, bounding Idaho on the east and separating it from Wyoming, mark the extremest eastern limit of the Columbia valley. Such is a bird's-eye view of the portion of the Pacific Northwest lying east of the Cascades. Some of its special features, as the magnificent lakes of Northern Idaho, the Coeur d'Alene and Pen d'Oreille, deserve especial mention. Their grandeur and beauty beggar description; while their practical utility cannot be estimated. Being a "land of old upheaven from

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the abyss, " this whole "Inland Empire" has a volcanic soil; and the trituration of the ages has gradually reduced it to a condition of the utmost fertility. Chemical analysis shows that this blanket of decomposed lava contains in greater perfection than in any known region the necessary ingredients for wheat production.

     And now a few words must be added as to the contour and general physical presentment of that smaller section of the pacific Northwest lying west of the Cascades. This region is about one-fifth in size that of the eastern; but, by reason of its earlier settlement and proximity to the ocean, it was sooner developed and now contains two-thirds of the population of the Pacific Northwest. West of the Cascades we find a marvelous change in climate and the general appearance of the country, though there is something after all which suggests to the traveler that the two sections are allied and necessary halves of one great whole. Instead of the rolling, treeless prairies of the eastern section, we find low, level lands, belted at frequent intervals by forest of spruce, fir, cedar and pine, all of gigantic size, and interlaced by an infinity of lesser growth. This region, as a whole, may be divided into two general divisions, one composed of the part north of the Columbia, and the other of that south. The former, which is, of course, Western Washington, is a broken and almost entirely wooded country, cut half way across by the many-branched Sound, and punctuated on its northwestern corner by the lofty and snow-crowned Olympic Mountains. The southern part, or Western Oregon, is much larger, having a coast line of nearly three hundred miles, and is naturally divided into the coast section and the valley section. These are sundered by the Coast Mountains, and are of about equal size, the former being about fifty miles wide by three hundred long, and the latter about sixty by two hundred and fifty. The former is composed of rugged and heavily timbered mountains, with numerous small and exceedingly fertile valleys opening to the sea. The latter consists of three large and mainly level valleys, open for the most part, though with belts of timber at frequent and convenient intervals. These three valleys are, in order, beginning on the north, the Willamette, sixty miles by a hundred and fifty; the Umpqua, separated from the former by the Calapooia Mountains, and about a third its size; and lastly, separated from the Umpqua by the Umpqua and Cow Creek Mountains, is the Rogue river valley, of about the same size as the Umpqua. These three rich and beautiful valleys were the first part of the Northwest to be settled; and until within five or six years they produced more grain than all the rest of the pacific Northwest combined. The valley of the Upper Columbia, however, now far surpasses them in annual production.

     Western Washington is almost exclusively a lumber country, the amount of agricultural land being relatively small. There are, however, some rich valleys, as those of the Cowlitz and Lewis rivers, both tributaries of the Columbia, the Chehalis, which empties into Gray's harbor, and the Skagit, which is near the northern boundary and flows into the Sound.

     And now what of the climatic conditions as manifested in these two different divisions of the Pacific Northwest? It may be summed up in a sentence: The Cascade Mountains, reaching their volcanic fingers up into the clouds which drift inland from the ocean, wring the moisture out of them, so that the lands west are frequented by rains, while those east are wrapped in sunshine. Western Oregon and Washington have practically two seasons, the wet and the dry. The former usually begins about the first of November and ends about the first of April. Statistics show the annual rainfall to average about fifty-five inches at Portland, about forty-five in the upper parts of the Willamette valley, about forty in the Umpqua, and thirty in the Rogue river. The rainfall gradually decreases, as seen, to the south; and it increases in about the same ratio towards the north, with the exception that about Port Townsend and the islands of the Strait of Fuca it is much less again. About the mouth of the Columbia and in general along the coast the rainfall is much greater than in the valley belt. At Neah Bay it sometimes reaches one hundred and twenty inches. At Astoria it is usually about seventy inches. The temperature is very equable, seldom falling below zero or even to ten degrees above, and seldom exceeding eighty-five degrees. Occasional days have been known, however, when the mercury has reached one hundred degrees or more. The climate is in the main healthful and pleasant, though as the year darkens to its cloudy decline, and as day succeeds day of cloudy or rainy weather, the effect is wearing on one's spirits, as well as likely to produce rheumatic and catarrhal troubles. The summer season, calm, cool, equable, with sleep-wooing nights, is as delightful as can well be conceived.

     Of all sections of the western portion of the Pacific Northwest, the Rogue river country takes the lead in climatic attractions. It has neither the excessive rainfall of the Willamette nor the drought of California. The climate of the eastern part of our country is very dry. The average rainfall at Walla Walla is about nineteen inches. It gradually diminishes to the southward, and increased to the northward. On the great plains of Idaho it is only abut ten inches; while about the lakes of Northern Idaho it reaches thirty. In spite of this deficient rainfall, the region of the Columbia usually matures crops of the finest quality and quantity. The soil is so deep and so mellow and absorptive of the dews and moisture of the clouds and the heavy sea-winds that, in many well-authenticated instances, the finest products have been matured without any rain at all. High, dry, windy and treeless as it is, the Upper Columbia plains look so unfruitful that for many years they were thought unsusceptible of culture. Never did the appearance of a country more completely belie its true character. Like the western portion of our country, the eastern has a climate much warmer than the states in the same latitudes in the East.

     The winters are usually but six weeks or two months in length, beginning about the middle of December and ending about the first of February. Spring is commonly well advanced by the middle of March, the flowers and fruit-trees are in bloom and the grain in vigorous growth. During the winter,



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short as it is, however, it is sometimes intensely cold. In January, 1888, the thermometer recorded twenty degrees below at Walla Walla, thirty-two degrees below at Spokane, and forty-five degrees below at Ellensburg. But, by the first of March, it was up to sixty degrees. It is also very hot at times in the Inland Empire. The mercury has climbed up to one hundred and twelve degrees at Walla Walla, The Dalles and other interior points. The springs and autumns are, however, most charming.

     But thus much must suffice for a brief glance at the most general features of this great country. In the subsequent chapters we propose to take up and carefully, though briefly, consider its special features of natural resources and human cultivation. The day has now gone by in which wholesale and extravagant laudation and speculative booming will aid a country. The aim of this work is historical, not speculative; and hence we shall present a plain, reasonable account of the different elements which enter into it. We believe that the reality is enough to attract both visitors and settlers; and, in the faith that the coming chapters will speak for themselves, we submit them to our readers.

RIVERS AND HARBORS.

     The river and harbor system of the Pacific Northwest are of surpassing beauty and of peculiar interest to the student of geography and geology. To the business mind, however, there are two facts to notice which militate somewhat against the practical usefulness of our water systems. These are, - first, the present many obstacles to navigation; second, the coast, being generally high and unindented, possesses few good harbors. Generally speaking, the coast extends in one vast and uniform wall of rock, along which the mighty swell of the Pacific thunders in impotent recognition of the fact that "hitherto it shall come and no further." To the generally turbulent and obstructed character of our rivers, the only exceptions are the lower Columbia and the Willamette. The last one hundred and eighty miles of the Columbia is one of the most magnificent watercourses in the world; while the Willamette, though broken by one considerable fall (at Oregon City), is otherwise a calm and placid stream, of remarkable volume for its length, and furnishing unusual facilities for navigation. To the generally inaccessible character of our coast, there is but one marked exception, Puget Sound; but, so extraordinary an exception is that, that the world hardly furnishes a parallel. Of its wonderful facilities for ingress and egress and of its multifarious resources, new ones rising almost daily from its encircling forests and fro its bold and picturesque margin of mineral-veined hills, we shall speak at length in due time. Meanwhile, spread out the map and glance at the general countenance of the country. Repeat the view which you have already taken of the contour of the mountains. You will see that they govern the general character of the river systems.

     With a few trifling exceptions in the southern part of Oregon and in the northwestern part of Washington, all the rivers of the Pacific Northwest discharge their contents into the sea through the Columbia. The Pacific Northwest, is practically, the valley of the Columbia. The Columbia is the great central artery of the country. Rising in the very heart of the Rockies in a deep-sunk lake called the "Punch-bowl: which, strange to say, connects it with the Athabasca, almost under the shadow of the stupendous Mounts Brown and Hooker, it flows northward one hundred and fifty miles along the foot of the mountains. Receiving at its highest northern point, in latitude fifty-four degrees, the foaming contributions of Canoe river, it makes the grand wheel southward and descends in cataract impetuosity until, in latitude fifty degrees, it becomes stilled in the placid deeps of the Arrow Lakes. The upper of these two interesting lakes is thirty miles long by about five miles wide; and its entrancing beauty of surface, with its infinite variations of coloring, makes a striking contrast with the rugged, almost appalling grandeur of its rocky shores. This rock formation, unlike that of the great middle plains of the Columbia, is granite. Issuing with renewed impetuosity from this lake, the headlong current is stayed again in the lower of the Arrow Lakes. This, though wider than the other, is not so long. It has the same characteristics of stern and savage grandeur. The river issues from it in a profound chasm in the solid flow of the lower Columbia. A dam could be made here very easily which might throw the summer flood of the river back into the Arrow Lakes, thus constituting an immense reservoir of them, and preventing the disastrous floods on the lower river, as well as storing up a great quantity of water for use in sustaining the attenuated river of autumn. Below the Arrow Lakes the river resumes, and for many miles maintains, its normal character of abrupt and striking variation. Calm and glassy lagoons alternate with whirling rapids. Green and smiling meadows succeed such craggy desolations that the fleeting glimpse of greenery seems an optical delusion.

     The Kootenai is the first large stream in the course of the Columbia's tributaries. It gathers up the waters of a large and mountainous region lying in the main north of our national domain, and containing the great Kootenai Lake as its central feature. This almost unknown land is rich in mineral and timber resources and stock, and is not destitute of farming possibilities. Experienced stock men say that the best stock range in the country is along the Kootenai. Owing, however, to the narrowness of the valleys and their general elevation, and their consequently rigorous climate, it will never cute any great figure in the agricultural world. The Kootenai river is remarkable for its



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sluggishness and frequent lake like expansions. Almost at the national boundary the already vast volume of the Columbia is augmented by the influx of the largest tributary yet received, and, with the exception of the Snake, the largest of the entire course. This is Clark's Fork. This wild and impetuous stream locks its multiplied fingers with those of the Missouri; and, with its never-ending washings, it carries away the floods born of the snows in the shaggy defiles of the Bitter Root Mountains. The upper section of Clark's Fork, commonly known as the Bitter Root river, expands into the magnificent body of water known as Pen d'Oreille Lake. For scenic grandeur this lake is not easily paralleled on the continent. Bold mountains, densely clothed with majestic forests, encircle it; and from their depths an increasing wealth of mineral and timber is derived. The lower part of Clark's Fork (from Pen d'Oreille Lake downward) is frequently called by its Indian name, Simeaquoteen. Though conveying an immense quantity of water (about two-thirds as much as the Snake and perhaps a fourth as much as the Columbia at their junction), this steam is so much broken by rapids as to present little chance for navigation. The lake and that part of the river above to Cabinet Rapids has been well traversed with steamboats; but, apart from that section, there are few to brave the threatening current and the savage rocks. Much of its lower course could be navigated, and no doubt will be ere long.

     Again resuming our journey down the main river, we find ourselves at the Kettle Falls, which are about fifty miles below the mouth of Clark's Fork. Here the river precipitates itself over a volcanic dyke a dozen feet high, forming a peculiarly torn and ragged cataract. Even at this distance above its mouth, the river is nearly half a mile wide, swift, deep and clear. The peculiar clearness of its water is due to the settling of the sediment in the Arrow Lakes. For a like reason the Kootenai, Clark's Fork and Spokane are exceedingly clear. Thus the river might reach the sea; but, when it receives the Snake, its pure flood is polluted by that turbid flow. Above Kettle Falls, the Columbia is navigable nearly three hundred miles, or to Farwell, at the second crossing of the Canadian Pacific Railroad, above the Arrow Lakes. Below those falls, a steamer can go down to Astoria, a distance of about seven hundred miles. An ascent is, however, impracticable at several points yet to be described. Just above Kettle Falls, the Colvile river enters the Columbia. This is too scanty and turbulent to afford navigation; but it waters one of the most promising valleys in the upper country, and one well worthy the attention of intending settlers. Another fifty-mile section below the falls, and we find ourselves at the mouth of the Spokane.  Several interesting things distinguish this limpid though impetuous and wholly unnavigable river. It is historically interesting, because on its bank was established Fort Spokane, in the year 1810, the second establishment of white men west of the Rocky Mountains. Henry's fort on Snake river being the first. Then on the banks of this same stream though higher up, is found the largest town in the interior of the Pacific Northwest. Still again, there is here a mountain of marble. This is said by some to be of fine quality, and almost limitless in quantity. It is said to be of all shades, - pure white, black, veined, and delicately tinted. We cannot speak of it from personal observation. Doubtless the future development of this marble quarry will be valuable.

     From the vicinity of the mouth of the Spokane, the vast, tawny, treeless plains of the middle Columbia region extend in characteristic illimitable swells and rolling hills for three hundred miles south. The general course of the river through this great interior basin is south. It is, however, subject to many and remarkable wanderings in some places running due north, and even northeast. It looks to every point of the compass. Its general descent is great, and its course broken by frequent and dangerous rapids. The most notable of these is Priest's rapids, so named as Alexander Ross tells us, because of the demonstrations made there by an Indian priest on the occasion of a party of Northwesters landing at the point in early times. None of these rapids, however, bad as they look, are insuperable obstacles to navigation. All of them have been successfully ascended as well as descended. Experienced pilots believe that at comparatively small outlay this section of the river can be made navigable for all kind of craft. Such men express the opinion that the Cascades, the Dalles, the Kettle Falls and Grand Rapids are the only places which can never be surmounted without locks and anals, between the ocean and Farwell, a distance of nearly a thousand miles. There are no rivers of much size or importance between the Spokane and Priest's Rapids. On the western side is the Okanagan, a mountain torrent, navigable a few miles from its mouth, and ascended on the route to the Conconully mines. It drains a wild and elevated region, almost unknown until the recent search for its mineral treasures led hundreds of active men into its depth. Not far below it is the grand and almost unexplored Lake Chelan, the largest lake in Washington, fifty miles by four or five in extent. Farther down, the boundless solitudes of grass prairies are cleft to make way for the shining waters of the Wenatchie, with its peach orchards and vineyards, said to bear the earliest of all in the Pacific Northwest.

     The rivers on the east side of the Columbia in this section of its course are all lost in the sandy coulees. These coulees are a peculiar feature of the great plain of the Columbia. They consist of deep channels in the plain cut by ancient streams when the lake that formerly covered the Columbia basin was being drained off. The Grand Coulee is apparently an old channel of the Columbia itself. Its precipitous walls afford rare opportunity for the geologist. Not very far below Priest's Rapids comes the largest stream entering the Columbia on its right bank, all its large tributaries, for topographical reasons which a glance at the map reveals, entering from the east or south. This one is the Yakima. A typical Northwestern river, cold, swift, clear, drawing its supplies from the unfailing springs which communicate with the glacial reservoirs around Mount Rainier, it drains one of the most fertile and promising sections



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of the Inland Empire. It is one of the most important streams for lumbering in our interior country. There are immense forests about its sources; and its swift waters have been brought into frequent requisition to drive logs to the treeless lands below. And now, but a few miles below the mouth of the Yakima (or Tapteal, as the Indians first named it), the Columbia widens its majestic flow, and across the sandy plains comes to meet it its greatest tributary, the Snake. Thus it is appropriately named, though the Indian names, Kimooenin and Sahaptin, are more mellifluous. The river is about one fourth as large as the Columbia at the point of meeting. Turbid, turbulent and gloomy, it comes to the meeting with a rush and roar well befitting its angry march of nine hundred miles across lava wastes and through impassable mountains. The old Canadian voyageurs of Hunt's trapping party called it, "La riviére maudite enragée" (the accursed mad river); and well does it sustain its character. We cannot here, though it would be worthy of a chapter by itself, describe the course of this stream from its source at the foot of the Three Tetons, across the arid prairies of  Southern Idaho, down the frightful plunge of the Shoshone, through the parted heights of the Blue Mountains, till it stains the blue waters of its greater ally with its discolored flood.

     The Snake is navigable to Lewiston, a distance of one hundred and fifty miles from its mouth. The Clearwater, which joins it there, is navigable a few miles in high water. The Snake itself, though broken into impassable torrents in its passage of the Blue Mountains, has many long stretches of smooth water above. Far up in Eastern Idaho, though having a tremendous current which tears away the soft alluvium of its banks, and yearly transports vast quantities to the sea, it admits the operation of small steamers. In this upper section the river runs on the top of the ground like a gigantic ditch. It is broken by two prodigious falls, the American and the Shoshone. The former is about sixty feet high and the latter three hundred. In savage grandeur it has no equal on this continent; and indeed Niagara is the only one which surpasses it in volume. At its mouth the Snake is spanned by a massive bridge of stone and iron. In spite of the frequent rapids of its navigable section, the Snake has furnished and will continue to furnish much traffic for steamboats. Of the immense quantities of grain harvested on the plateaus of Whitman, Assotin, Garfield, Columbia and Walla Walla counties, which border its banks, a certain proportion goes and will go down the hills to the steamboat landings. In time, too, the fertile strip of fruit and garden land which lies next to the river will be cultivated largely, and will furnish much material for river traffic.

     Of the numerous small streams which enter the Columbia between the Snake and the Cascade Mountains, it is not possible to speak fully. None of them are navigable, though some of them furnish large volumes of water. In their order, on the south, they are the Walla Walla (meaning the valley of waters), the Umatilla (which means the gathering of the sand), the John Day (named for the famous old hunter), the Des Chutes, or Fall river (known to the Indians as Towahnahiooks). On the north side of the river there are no tributaries between the Yakima and the Klikitat, a hundred and seventy miles below. On both sides of the river are numerous small creeks which become almost dry in the long drought of summer. Most of the streams in this part of the Columbia run through deep cañons in the elevated plain. The Walla Walla and Umatilla are exceptions, since they enter the Columbia from vast prairies, barren in appearance, but having a fertile soil, and waiting only the advent of water in irrigating ditches to blossom into beauty and productiveness. All of the streams mentioned on the south side of the river flow from the Blue Mountains, except the Des Chutes. It rises on the east side of the Cascades, almost opposite the sources of the Willamette. Its chief tributary, the Metolius, a furious glacial stream, drains the eastern flank of Mount Jefferson. The Des Chutes itself, though surpassed only by the Willamette in volume of all the affluents of the Columbia below the Snake, is but a succession of cataracts, and wholly unfitted for navigation. In the vicinity of the Des Chutes we see plainly that we are now approaching another kind of country.

     The stupendous snow peaks of the Cascade Range are now marshaled along the west; and shadowy forms of blue fringe the horizon. The country along the banks, too, though still dry and treeless, becomes more rugged and wild, as if in anticipation. And well may it look so, for the great Dalles, the greatest and most singular obstruction on the river, is now at hand. For a distance of about ten miles, the river is wholly unnavigable; nor can it ever be made navigable without canal and locks. The obstructions consist of the Tumwater Falls at the head of the stretch and the "chute" at the end. The former is, at low water, a perpendicular fall of about fifteen feet; but at high water the fall is entirely obliterated by the mass of water, so that steamers can plunge over it. Several miles of smooth water succeed, and then comes the "chute," one of the most extraordinary places in the world. The whole mighty volume of the Columbia is forced through a channel only one hundred and sixty-five feet wide. Of its depth no man knows. The fearful current prevents sounding. In one place, however, a line was thrown out to a length of three hundred feet, without reaching bottom. The river is, no doubt, "turned on edge." One curious thing about this place is that an old channel runs along parallel to the existing one for a mile or more, which might be used as a canal. The rock here being of the hardest kind, and the difficulty of excavating being very great, it has been estimated that the use of this channel would save a million dollars. At the best, however, the building and operating of a canal at this place will be attended with much labor and expense. In the "chute," where the river is gorged, the rise in the June flood is from one hundred to one hundred and forty feet. This monstrous increase in volume will make it a difficult matter to execute the much-needed and much-desired improvements. But nothing is impossible to modern engineering; and we ma expect that a quarter of a century more will see vessels passing the great Dalles. Immediately



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below The Dalles, the river expands into a glassy and beautiful bay in which it seems to rest itself from the fierce struggle with the volcanic forces which it has just passed through. Formerly many steamers ran on the section between Celilo and Lewiston. Now traffic is carried on almost entirely by rail. The expense of transferring freight at The Dalles causes the ordinary rule to be reversed, and makes rail carriage cheaper than river. There has been much talk lately of making a ship railway here, one which might be a sort of an experimental antecedent of the proposed Eads Tehuantepec road. It is also in serious contemplation to appropriate state funds to make a portage railroad. From the variety of schemes in process of incubation, it may be reasonably expected that someone will reach maturity ere long: and when it does the upper country will receive a commercial "boost" quite beyond present ability to estimate.

     Below The Dalles the river gradually becomes deeper, wider and more sluggish. In width it varies from half a mile to a mile and a half; and there are few places where there is a depth of less than a hundred feet in the channel. The changed character of the river and the sunken forests along the banks between Hood River and the Cascades make it quite sure that the obstructions at the latter place were caused by a great landslide at some recent day. The Cascades consist of a cataract a quarter of a mile long, known as the Upper Cascades, in which there is a descent of about twenty-five feet. Below this there is swift water for about five miles, in the course of which the river falls about twenty feet more. The upper cataract, of course, cannot be ascended by steamers; but strong boats can mount the other rapids, except in the highest stage of water, and reach the foot of the cataract. A canal is now in process of construction around this rapid. Even in its incomplete state it is a colossal piece of work, and when finished (as it is hoped to be within two or three years more) will be one of the greatest works of the kind in the world. Just above the Upper Cascades the river rises about sixty feet in the summer flood; and, as the huge mass of yellow water  a mile wide is suddenly compressed into the narrow space of three hundred yards, it thunders down the chasm as though it would crack the earth asunder. Various facts of interest in regard to the river have been ascertained by the government engineers at the Cascades which we will give here. At the narrowest place in the river, at the foot of the canal, the width is six hundred feet at low water and nine hundred and fifty at high water. A cross-section of the river at extreme low water measures 19,900 square feet, and at high water 62,250 square feet. The velocity at the point of measurement is five and five-tenths miles an hour at low water, and eighteen at high water. The discharge at low water is 10,156,690 cubic feet per minute; and at high water it is 70,098,500 cubic feet per minute. The amount of water discharged at the Cascades is about the same as that of the Mississippi at New Orleans. Thus the Columbia, though but half as long as the "Father of Waters" has, by reason of the prodigious height of the mountains of its source, and their consequent snowfall, and probably by its superior swiftness (which does not allow so rapid evaporation), as much water as that.

     Another strange fact about the Columbia at the Cascades is worthy of passing notice, and that is the sliding banks. As it appears sure that the Cascades were caused by an immense slide into the river, so the same condition of the banks still continues. On both sides there is a constant movement of the banks towards the river, insomuch that it is necessary to reset the railroad track every year. The movement averages about ten inches a year, though in 1883 there was a slip of four or five feet on the south side. The engineers say that for some time during that summer they could hear on still nights a grinding sound like a loose upper crust sliding slowly over a solid base of bed-rock. On sounding the river just off this point, to see how much water they might have in case they slid off, they found three hundred feet. Although the Cascades cannot be ascended, there is nothing to hinder a descent at high water; and a number of boats have been run down. The first boat to make this thrilling shoot was the Umatilla; and the run was made purely by accident, the boat having been cast off from the wharf before steam was up, on her way to The Dalles, and having been drawn into the suck of the cataract before she could be got under way. This was in 1857. She was in charge of Lawrence Coe, and was making her trial trip. R.R. Thompson, who, in company with Coe, had built the boat, was also on board; and between them, though naturally somewhat "rattled" by so unexpected a change in their programme, they kept their senses sufficiently to guide the boat safely over the worst part of the rapids. One man, however, thinking the fate of the boat sealed, leaped overboard and was drowned. Having got nearly through, the steamer struck heavily on a rock projecting from Bradford's Island and stove a hole in her bottom. She sunk in consequence, but was afterwards raised and repaired and taken to Frazer river. The rock on which she struck (afterwards known as Umatilla Rock) has since been blown up by the government engineers. A few years later Captain J.C. Ainsworth ran the Oneonta, the finest steamer then on the river, over the rapids, making a complete success of it. Captain I.J. Stump then attempted to shoot the shaggy cataract in the Okanagan; but the stage of water was not favorable, and she was wrecked at the foot of the falls. No lives were lost, however; and the boat was subsequently raised and repaired and ran for man years on the lower river. Next to make the perilous attempt was the Nez Perce Chief, which was successfully taken over by Captain Ainsworth. The same skilled pilot afterwards met with equal success in the case of the Shoshone.

     A few years passed without any runs of the Cascades; and then the small boat Teaser was safely guided over the foam and through the rocks by Captain J.W. Brazee. Since that time six large boats have made the run, and two small ones. Three of these, the Idaho, the Mountain Queen and the Hassalo, were piloted by Captain J.W. Troup, a gallant and skillful captain, on whom the mantle of Captain Ainsworth seems to have fallen. To the well-known Captain McNulty must be ascribed the glory of having taken over the largest boat that ever made the "riffle," to wit, the Thompson, at that time the



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largest boat on the river, and still surpassed only by the Alaskan (1). The Thompson did not make a scratch, and accomplished the six miles of rapids in seven minutes. The same pilot afterwards took The Dalles warf-boat over, but did not meet with so good success. She was badly shaken up. Captain Fred Wilson is the only man that ever sailed down. This he did with the barge Atlas. The two small boats, the Gold Dust and the General Humphreys, were safely propelled down the rapids by Captain Mitchell. Though they were tossed like corks on the frightful swirls, and seemed several times at the point of swamping, they got safely through. It may be safely asserted that, though the general result of these attempts has been satisfactory, yet no steamboat man really enjoys the job. It is one of  those things which are pleasanter to look back to than forward to. At the foot of the Cascades, the Columbia feels the influence of tide-water. The remainder of its course is a stately flow between green banks and timbered hills; and twenty miles of this distance is between the majestic foam-streaked crags which fire and flood have united to form. Below Washougal, where the calm waters attain a width of two miles, the banks become low and fertile, and numerous islands divide the flood. One hundred miles from the sea, the river receives its third largest tributary, the Willamette. This drains the great valley of Western Oregon, one hundred and fifty miles long and sixty miles wide.

     By reason of the abundant rainfall and the great watershed exposed to snow in the Coast and Cascade Mountains, the Willamette and its affluents have an extraordinary volume for their length, and, contrary to the general rule of rivers in the Pacific Northwest, afford remarkable facilities for navigation. The Willamette itself has one fall of about thirty feet at Oregon City; but aside from that it is navigable to Corvallis, about ninety miles from Portland, at at high water to Eugene, forty miles farther. The falls at Oregon City are overcome by canal and locks which have been in use many years. Among the tributaries of the Willamette, the Yamhill and the Tualatin have been used more or less for some distance, the former quite regularly. The Santiam and Mackenzie afford short stretches of navigable water. Congressional as well as state aid have been asked, and in some measure received, to clean out drift and snags from these streams; and, when this is done, the watercourses of the Willamette valley will be a most important adjunct to its transportation resources. Below the mouth of the Willamette, several streams of some size and importance enter the Columbia. The first of these is lewis river, a turbid and impetuous stream, fed in part by the glacial springs of Mounts Adam and St. Helens. It is boatable for but a short distance. It enters the Columbia nearly opposite the lower mouth of the Willamette, and is mainly responsible for the St. Helens bar, which it has formed by the sand thrown out diagonally athwart the bed of the river. Lake river, a small but deep and sluggish stream, affording navigation for some miles into a very fine dairy region, enters lewis river just at its mouth. The next stream worthy of note is the Cowlitz. This drains the largest and richest valley in Western Washington. The stream is navigable to Toledo, about thirty-five miles from the mouth. The Cowlitz is the main channel for the exit of the waters of Mount St. Helens. Like all the streams heading in the snow peaks, it is exceedingly swift and cold. The region of the Cowlitz is historically famous; for here the Hudson's Bay Company carried on some of their heavy farming enterprises, and here settled some of the oldest and best known of the American pioneers.

    Of the numerous little rivers which put into the Columbia between the mouth of the Cowlitz and the sea, it is hardly worth while to speak here. They afford no navigation, with the exception of short strips on Young's river and the Lewis and Clark; nor do they perceptibly increase the volume of the river. The mighty stream now broadens to the sea, and flows in majestic tranquillity, a fit symbol of irresistible power. It attains its greatest width in what is known as Cathlamet Bay. It is there very shallow, and about eleven miles wide. Just off Tongue Point, which is thrust out most obtrusively, as if to taste of every passing steamer, the waters concentrate into one vast channel thirty fathoms deep. At Astoria, the most ancient city of our coast, the width has diminished to about six miles. From this point down, the shores become very irregular, by the deep indentations of Young's Bay on the south and Baker's Bay on the north. The last headlands, beyond which the stately waters shoot far out into the ocean (it is said a hundred miles in the June flood), are the low and sandy spot of Point Adams on the south and the bold and picturesque promontory of Cape Hancock on the north. The two capes, seven miles apart, are both crowned with lighthouses and forts. the mouth of the river has two channels, the north, which winds along almost at the foot of Cape Hancock, and the south, which might better be called the middle, since it is almost in the center of the stream.

     Sand Island, a large and shifting body of sand, closely borders the north channel. It, together with the sand-bars, making out from it, seems to have been subject to constant fluctuations, having had no existence in the beginning of this century, and now being two miles farther north than it was twenty years ago. Those who were here fifty years ago say that at that time there was a long cape crowned with trees which ran out from Point Adams a distance of a mile or more. This was afterwards washed out entirely. Latterly Sand Island has developed a strong migratory tendency to the north; and, in consequence, Baker's Bay is filling up. We are informed by the pilots of the Ilwaco steamers that, if the filling process continue another year, it will not be possible to reach Ilwaco at all next summer. This shoaling on the north side of the river has been hastened by the great jetty now being constructed by "Uncle Sam" from Point Adams northward. This has now been carried out about a mile; and it is thought that the present appropriation will suffice to extend the work this summer to an equal distance farther. Already the beneficial results of the jetty are being felt; for there has been a marked deepening of the channel. The

     (1) Since wrecked.



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ultimate effect of the jetty will be to fill up the north channel entirely and deepen the middle channel sufficiently to make it navigable for the largest vessels in all stages of weather. The present depth on the bar at mean tide, though variable, is about twenty-five feet; and this will be bettered by from five to ten feet more when the jetty is completed. Even at the worst, however, the dangers of the bar have been monstrously exaggerated. Statistics show that the loss has been, relatively to the amount of shipping, less than at almost any other harbor on this or the Atlantic coast. Still it will not be denied that there is, at certain stages of wind and tide, a fearful looking bar, and that there have been at times very serious detentions. The improvements now in progress will be of inestimable importance. The reader will now be interested in having some account of the other harbors of our coast.

     There are no rivers of any size or commercial importance outside of the Columbia and its tributaries, though a large number of streams enter the ocean from the Coast Mountains, as well as the Sound from the Cascades and their spurs. Below the mouth of the Columbia, the first stream worthy of notice is the Nehalem. This drains a rich and extensive though densely wooded and almost inaccessible valley. About its mouth are growing settlements; and there is a combination of interests which will sometime render it an important point. The river is too shallow, however, for commerce on any large scale. Small boats enter in favorable weather. A few miles below the mouth of the Nehalem are Tillamook and Netarts Bays, both beautiful little sheets of water, but too shallow for any general commerce. the coast below this is very rugged and inaccessible for many miles. But, at a distance of about one hundred and ten miles from the mouth of the Columbia, we enter a beautiful bay, large enough for abundant shipping, and admirably located for commerce. This is Yaquina Bay. Though commodious inside, its entrance is so blocked by a reef as to make it inaccessible to any large vessel in heavy weather. This reef is, however, very narrow; and the improvements proposed ad partially begun will make an excellent harbor of it. As will appear more fully in another chapter, this bay is the terminus of the Oregon Pacific Railroad, which will no doubt sometime work important results to this country. Yaquina is by far the most beautiful of the various seaside resorts of Oregon, and is soon to be so embellished with seaside cottages as to vie with the older representatives of its class on the Atlantic coast.

    Passing the mouths of the Alsea and Sinslaw, two vigorous streams with large and mainly unsettled regions contiguous to them well worthy the attention of immigrants, but not having sufficient water on their bars to admit of shipping, we reach the mouth of the Umpqua. This river drains a large and beautiful valley, next to that of the Willamette in size, and has a good-sized bay at its mouth. Like most of the inlets on the coast of Oregon, this is not large enough for general commerce. There are a great many salmon here, and fisheries of large size are being established. These, together with railroad talk, are beginning to mae a somewhat important place of Gardiner, at the mouth of the river. Soon after passing the mouth of the Umpqua, the mariner reaches a point where "a haven for the weary smiles," the largest and best between San Francisco and Astoria. This is Coos Bay, a safe and easy harbor for vessels of the largest class, and having room inside for the navies of the world. This is in reality an excellent harbor, and far surpasses all other points on our coast, outside of Puget Sound and the Columbia River, in the value of its exports. It is surrounded by magnificent forests, and has vast coal fields contiguous to it, form which it has extensive commerce with San Francisco. A large number of fine ships have been built here. There is much good land on the flanks of the mountains bordering Coos Bay, as well as on the farther side towards the Umpqua valley. Such are the resources in sight that there is ample reason for the abundant railroad talk which is going the rounds; and it is only a question of time when Coos Bay will become a leading point on the coast. Below this part of our coast line, the mountains rise again to lofty heights; and the coast becomes more and more forbidding and inaccessible. The Coquille and Rogue rivers are two streams of some size, the latter especially, but having no facilities at all for shipping. There is a small harbor at the mouth of Rogue river, and a small place named Ellensburg there; but the river itself is a mountain torrent. The valley drained by the Rogue river is in some respects the finest on the Pacific slope, and will receive a merited share of attention in another place. Port Orford is a small harbor just above the mouth of Rogue river.

     With this rapid glance at the harbors of the Oregon coast, let us now sail northward from Astoria, and see what the coast of Washington has to offer. At first it presents the same characteristics of forbidding unindentedness (if we may be allowed the word), though the mountains are for some distance north of the Columbia much lower and farther removed from the coast than on the south side. There are two large bays immediately north of the Columbia - Shoalwater and Gray's Harbor. The former is exceedingly shallow, but intersected by deep channels, the greater part of it being a mud-flat at low tide. it is the emporium of the oyster and clam crops; and the amount of the succulent bivalves which congregate there beggars belief.  The head of Shoalwater Bay is within five miles of the Columbia; and there are some indications that the river formerly discharged part of its contents through the bay. Between the head of the bay and its mouth is a strip of beach a mile or two wide and twenty miles long which, commonly called Long Beach, is one of the most superb places of the kind in the country., There is an unbroken carriage drive on the hard beach of twenty miles. Being so easy of access by steamer from Portland and by rail from Ilwaco, this beach has become the chief seaside resort of Oregon.

     Gray's Harbor is much more of a port than Shoalwater bay, but it is not deep enough to admit the largest class of ships. There are immense resources of lumber and fish, and something of agricultural, about this bay. It has regular steamboat communication with Astoria; and its chief places, Hoquiam and Aberdeen, are now partaking of the "boom" which now "boometh" on the coast in general. The



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Chehalis is a large stream entering this bay, coming from the spurs of the Cascades, and being crossed by the Northern Pacific Railroad; from which it appears that the Chehalis valley is the only one between the Umpqua and Puget Sound which fairly cuts the Coast Range in two, and crosses the general region between the Coast and Cascade Ranges.

     And now, Gray's Harbor past, we approach the greatest series of inland waters on the entire coast of America. Washington, we may here remark, has more coast line than any other state in the union. It amounts to one thousand, nine hundred and ninety-two miles. Nine-tenths of this follows the intricate lines of Puget Sound and the waters adjoining. As the sailor approaches the entrance of the Strait of Fuca, he sees that the mountains are becoming loftier and more rugged. They attain at last the towering altitude of Mount Olympus, crowned with snow, and encircle with forests into whose sunless depths, thick with the lairs of wild beasts, few have penetrated. The Olympic Range terminates in the stormy promontory, usually wrapped in clouds and fringed with dangerous reefs, of Cape Flattery. Here the Pacific Northwest corner of our national domain seems to be split in two; and approaching, like a gigantic wedge, is the rugged southeast extremity of Vancouver Island.

     The legend of old Juan de Fuca and his discovery of this inland sea, and of his "divers islands passed in that sailing," comes to mind of everyone who looks at the map or the majestic reality of the strait which has preserved his name. A volume might be written on the subject of this most important of the waters of the Pacific Northwest. But our space permits us only to give its general features. As you glance at the map, you see that there are four large natural divisions of these waters. The first is the Strait of Fuca, which has an average width of about fifteen miles and a length of about one hundred. The second is the Archipelago de Haro, immediately joining the strait on the east and north. The third is Admiralty Inlet and the inlets of Hood's Canal and Puget Sound, extending southward therefrom. The fourth is the Gulf of Georgia, extending far beyond our national domain to the north. Of the Strait of Fuca little need be said aside form the fact that its great depth, its directness, and the steadiness of the winds, make it accessible at all times to all kinds of vessels. The same grandeur and beauty are not lost on the heart of the modern traveler, which so captivated the usually phlegmatic and taciturn Vancouver as to lead him to break forth into the most enthusiastic description. He says that they could not conceive that anything more beautiful could exist.

     If the most experienced sailor and the most practiced pilot and the shrewdest merchant had put their heads together and contrived an ideal sea, with every conceivable advantage and every danger and unpleasantness lacking, they could not have outdone what the elemental forces have made out of Puget Sound and its approaches and adjuncts. The archipelago, which, with the lower part of the Gulf of Georgia, is sometimes called Washington Sound, constitutes a body of waters and islands and channels about fifty miles each way. Good harbors abound in this region, but of pre-eminent excellence and importance among them is Bellingham Bay and its adjuncts. The inlets on the mainland are here so under the lee of Fidalgo and (farther on) of Whidby Island that they have almost perfect protection from the weather. Harbors here are so numerous, such as Ship Harbor, Port gardiner, Utsalady, etc., that it is needful only to sum them up in one general statement, and say that the entire archipelago is a succession of natural ports. No blasting, no dyking, no jettying is required in these deep and spacious bays. Passing the southern extremity of Whidby Island, we find ourselves at the bold promontory of Foulweather Bluff, which parts the entrance of Hood's Canal on the west from that of Admiralty Inlet on the east. A dozen or fifteen miles below the mouth of the former is the magnificent harbor of Port Townsend. Aside from its being on the wrong side of the Sound, and being in a position to get occasional very heavy winds, this is perhaps the finest port (if one might say finest where all are fine) on the Sound.

     Just at the entrance of Hood's Canal are the ports of Ludlow and Gamble. Here are immense sawmills. Hood's Canal has an average width of about a mile, and is exceedingly deep and clear, with bold and rugged shores, densely covered with the finest kind of timber. It extends in a southwesterly direction about fifty miles, and then is bowed around in fish-hook shape to the northeast for a distance of about fifteen miles. It is a case of manifest destiny that this wonderful sheet of water be used for lumbering and commerce; for anything more perfectly suited to such purposes cannot be conceived. Returning to the mouth of Admiralty Inlet, we find ourselves approaching the great city of the Sound, Seattle. Its maritime advantages are almost ideal. A large and beautiful bay in front, and the two superb fresh-water lakes in the rear (Lakes Washington and Union), coal, lumber, copper, and gypsum in the near vicinity, abundant railway communication with every part of the country,- such are the opportunities of every kind gathered here, that it is not surprising that the city has septupled itself in the last decade.

     Beyond  Seattle, the Sound continues in almost an exact southerly direction, at an average width in the main part of about four miles, besides a large channel on the west side of the fertile and beautiful Vashon Island, till it reaches Commencement Bay. Here it turns sharply to the west, and for some distance is much narrowed. At this angle in the Sound is Tacoma. Suffice it to say of this harbor that it has no superior even on the Sound. It is especially remarkable for its depth; for in many places it is too deep for ships to anchor. the depth is so great, in fact, as to become an impediment to navigation rather than a help. The distance from Tacoma to the point of Whidby Island is about fifty miles. From Tacoma the Sound extends in a southwesterly direction some thirty miles farther. It becomes broken up into numerous branches, all deep, abounding in fine points for landings, and still bordered with the



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majestic forests which it seems to be its mission to offer to the world. there are seven of these arms spread out in the rugged forest land like the fingers of a hand. The most southerly of all is known as Budd's Inlet; and beyond the tide flats which border its southern extremity is Olympia, the capital of Washington. There are many little rivers entering the Sound and the gulf north of it from the snowy heights of the Cascade Mountains. Of these, the Skagit, Nortsack, Stillaguamish and Snohomish are navigable short distances. The others are small, and afford little
or no opportunity for navigation. Of the Sound itself and its adjacent waters, it is scarcely necessary to say that they furnish the finest possible opportunities for steamboating and the movements of all kinds of craft. So deep and spacious are these waters, and so regular are the winds, that sailing vessels can, and generally do, enter the straits and go to their usual destination at  Seattle or Tacoma without tugs. The only drawback to the Sound as a shipping region is the terrible teredo, which so honeycombs piles and other timbers that six years is usually the limit of time for their safe use. Various expedients have been proposed and tried for neutralizing their ravages. The most successful of these is to inject the piles with creosote. For the manufacture of this there is an immense factory at Salmon Bay, near Seattle. The plan of the Seattle people to create canal communication with Lake Washington, and thereby run ships into the fresh water (which is a sure destruction of the teredo), is the most certain device yet found.

     These brief pages must suffice for a glance at the natural water-ways of the Pacific Northwest. To all our readers we would say that the interest of the subject is well worth a personal inspection.

AGRICULTURAL RESOURCES.

     Thus far in the history of the Pacific Northwest, agriculture has been the chief occupation. Although lumbering has added a steadily increasing sum to our income, though mining and manufacturing are becoming yearly more important, and the fisheries and stock interests have played conspicuous parts in the development of the country, parts which new adaptations to new conditions may yet enlarge, still the fact remains that over half the population of the pacific Northwest is concerned in the productions of the farm, or in the preparing of them for market. The majority of immigrants come to farm. The picture which they frame in their mines as they bid farewell to the Eastern home - with its blizzards and cyclones and fierce extremes of temperature, its grasshoppers and potato bugs (and yet with so many loved associations) - is of a farm in sight of Mount Hood, from whose perpetual congelation comes a cool breeze to temper the hot air, while some clear, cold stream, with a sonorous Indian name and thick with trout, ripples gently in the foreground of the scene.

     To show how and where the ideal conditions of farm-life in the Pacific Northwest may be best met is the aim of this chapter of our work. There are three fundamental conditions of successful farming. These are soil, climate and market. The highest average of these three is the thing which the intelligent farmer seeks. We have already indicated in a general way the climatic peculiarities of the country. A subsequent article will be devoted to transportation lines. We shall therefore in this chapter speak mainly of the special features of special localities, making such observations as seem proper on soil and other necessary concomitants of the theme. One general observation should be made here, and that is that the common system of exclusive wheat farming has been giving way during the last few years to the inevitable change which comes from added population and larger markets, that is, to a mixed system of farming, with greatly added attention to fruit, dairying, gardening and poultry-raising. We should need an entire volume instead of a chapter to detail all the facts in all localities in regard to these several departments of the subject. We shall endeavor, however, within our limits, to give the reader, and especially the intending settler, a general idea of each.

     Oregon contains ninety-five thousand, two hundred and seventy-four square miles; Washington sixty-nine thousand, nine hundred and ninety-four; and Idaho, eighty-six thousand, two hundred and sixty-two square miles. Probably half of this area consists of lofty and rugged mountains and barren plateaus. The greater part of the other half is suited to agriculture. About one-fifth of the entire area lies west of the Cascade Mountains and has a mild, equable climate, with abundant rainfall, ranging from about thirty inches in the Rogue river valley of Southern Oregon to one hundred and forty inches at Neah Bay at the northwest extremity of Washington. The four-fifths east of the Cascades is divided pretty nearly into two equal parts by the Blue, Coeur d'Alene and Salmon River Ranges, and has a dry climate, hot in summer, cold in winter, with a rainfall which averages about twenty inches in the western division, and about ten in the eastern. We might properly denominate these three great divisions the western (west of the Cascades), middle (between the Cascades and the Blue Mountains), and eastern (between the Blue Mountains and the Rockies). Of the three divisions, the western contains far the largest population and has the best developed farms and communities in general. The middle contains the largest amount of rich land, and has more accessible land to be obtained cheap than the others. The eastern division is almost unsettled, and by reason of the scanty rainfall will have to depend on some great system of irrigation before its lands can be made generally available. One other fact common to all sections of the Pacific Northwest may be noted or rather recalled from the first chapter of this volume, - that almost its entire area is of volcanic character. Outflows of molten rock have formed its mountains and covered



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its valleys. Its soil consists largely of disintegrated basalt, covered with a vegetable loam which varies in depth according to the amount of rainfall and the consequent rankness of growth of vegetation, and the amount which is furnished for decay.

   With this much of an introductory nature, let us proceed to take up in their proper order the subdivisions of the large sections of our empire. First, the western division: This consists of a strip four hundred and eighty-six miles long by about one hundred wide from the seashore to the snows of the Cascade Range. The various parts of this area have the common characteristics of the mild, humid climate, and consequently rank growth of all kinds of natural vegetable productions. There is, generally speaking, a heavy clay subsoil, with rich, loamy surface. All the elevated regions, and many of the level parts, abound in timber. Streams of water are numerous and pure. The climate is rather relaxing and debilitating in the parts removed from the immediate effects of the sea. by reason of the proximity to the ocean and its arms, this section is more favored in respect to market than the middle and eastern sections. But this western grand division is, like the others, capable of subdivision. The most marked of these subdivisions is the coast section and the valley section. The former is the narrow strip extending from the ocean beach to the top of the Coast Mountains, while the latter embraces that part east of the top of that range. The coast section has the characteristics of equability and humidity of climate already noted of the region in general, but in a more marked degree. The rainfall is excessive along the beach; and at Neah Bay, as already noted, it reaches the enormous average of one hundred and forty inches. The temperature is very equable, being rarely above seventy degrees or below forty degrees. Frost and snow are almost unknown. The climate, in spite of the extreme humidity, is exceedingly healthful.

     The agricultural resources of the coast region are comparatively limited, though their proper unfolding by means of railroad lines and regular steamboat traffic will show an amount of available land much greater than has been generally understood, and the development of which will become an important factor in the products of the coast. These lands are found mainly along the short and narrow valleys of little rivers which descend from the timbered heights of the Coast Range. The valleys themselves are usually from ten to twenty miles long, and from a few hundred feet to a mile or so wide. They are always composed of the most fertile, loamy soil, washed down from the rank, decomposing vegetation of the hill region. They are clothed with forests of giant size, around whose gnarled and thick-barked trunks clamber vines, briars, ferns, flowers and all manner of small growths, ad infinitum. These lands are of extreme fertility, and after having been cleared (a process which costs from twenty dollars to one hundred dollars per acre) produce amazing crops of everything which can be raised in a cool and humid climate. Wheat does not do well. It is too cool and wet. Oats produce an incredible amount. The writer has seen oat stalks eight and a half feet high and as large at the base as a large pencil. He has seen small fields at Tillamook which yielded at the rate of one hundred and twenty-five bushes per acre. All manner of roots crops, as turnips, parsnips, carrots, as well as potatoes, are here in their native element. One hardly dares to tell how large they grow. For example: On the farm of Josiah West, on Clatsop Plains, a turnip grew which weighed forty-six pounds. Grasses grow to extraordinary size, and are of the most succulent and nourishing quality on the coast. For this reason, as well as for the excellence of the root crops, the coast belt is one of the best for dairying purposes. Cows can obtain green feed the year round. Already butter from the coast is an established factor in the markets of Portland and Astoria.

     The coast belt, with the exception of the parts immediately about the mouth of the Columbia, has hitherto been isolated from market. Latterly, however, by means of regular boats, the more prominent coast points have been reached. Proposed railroads will, when completed, bring many sections now unknown within the reach of the settler. Beginning at the mouth of the Columbia and moving southward, the first section of the coast fit for agriculture is Clatsop Plains and the lands about Young's Bay and along Young's and Lewis and Clark's rivers. Here are still some desirable locations to be entered as government land. Settlers do not seek these lands much at present, because they do not know of them. One might easily do worse than to locate on a farm in this region. These lands are rich, easily accessible; and the climate, though very moist, is healthful and invigorating. At the extreme southern end of the Clatsop Plains region is the valley of the Nekanikan, one of the typical valleys described and one that possesses much government land. It would be a good point for a colony to settle. There are indeed giant forests and much rain; and these things deter many who would otherwise like the section. Below this point we find the rich and extensive valley of the Nehalem, the largest of all the coast valleys, being in all not less than seventy miles long by from half a mile to two miles wide. It ramifies through the Coast Mountains and possesses sufficient resources to maintain quite a community of itself. The region about the mouth of the Nehalem has rare advantages for stock and dairy ranches. There is still an abundance of vacant land waiting for settlers in this section.

     Below the Nehalem is Tillamook Bay, with several small rivers entering it, around whose confluence with the bay are quite extensive farming lands. These have been settled many years, and have reached a greater degree of development than any part of the coast region except Yaquina. The Nestucca, Salmon river, and the Siletz have small valleys of a character similar to those already described, in all of which, aside from the portions of the last-named occupied by the Indian reservation, there are still openings for government entry.



108                                                     HISTORY OF PACIFIC NORTHWEST - OREGON AND WASHINGTON.

     The region around Yaquina Bay again is more extensive, and by reason of its communication with the market, which none of the places between Tillamook and Yaquina have, it has been much more developed than any other part of the coast regions of Oregon. It is said that there is a marked decrease of rainfall at Yaquina, and some increase of temperature, from which it results that fruit culture is a great success. It is claimed that the prunes of Yaquina are possessed of extraordinary flavor and general excellence. Below Yaquina is the Alsea, and below that the Siuslaw, both of which have fertile valleys of considerable length, much of which is still open for settlement. Around the Siuslaw, bench and hill lands which have been measurably cleared already by great forest fires. These are said to be especially adapted to fruit culture and dairying. The proximity of the ocean makes this region very warm in winter and spring; and, by its elevation and greater distance south, it does not have the excessive rainfall which visits those parts of the coast farther north. This extensive tract of land still largely waits for settlers. Immigrants would do well to examine its merits. On the coast south of the Siuslaw, there are several more little valleys of a type similar to those already described. Best among these, perhaps, is the Coquille. There are also good lands yet to be taken up around Coos Bay.

     The Umpqua and Rogue rivers have some small strips of rich land along their lower courses; but above they have large and beautiful valleys, which are so far inland as not to be computed in the coast section at all.

     Returning to the mouth of the Columbia again, and proceeding north, we find that the coast of Washington has several small fertile valleys, narrow, timbered, moist and verdant. The North river, the Nasel, the Willopa, which are tributaries of Shoalwater Bay, and the Humptumps, Hoquiam, and especially the Chehalis, which enter Gray's Harbor, have desirable lands yet to be entered as government land. The Chehalis valley, like that of the Rogue river or that of the Umpqua, extends inland, and may be said to belong to both the coast and interior sections. Thus far the coat region has been very slow of development. The difficulty of clearing it of the dense timber, and its general disconnection with market, have kept it back. But now steamboats maintain regular service between Astoria and Tillamook and Gray's Harbor; and the projected railroads will place many valuable regions within reach of the world. This much for the coast part of the western section.

     The inland portion of the western belt of the pacific Northwest contains most of the population, large towns, manufactories, etc., of the country. As a purely grain country, however, it is far surpassed now, and will be relatively still more, by the middle belt. The inland part of the western belt may very naturally be divided by the state line into the Washington and Oregon divisions.

     The Washington division has but small agricultural interests. There are some exceedingly fertile valleys along the little rivers entering Puget Sound, such as the Skagit, the Samish, the Swinomish Flats, the Snoqualmie, the Puyallup, etc. In their general character, these valleys are much like those of the coast, - narrow, moist and densely timbered. When cleared, they are unsurpassed for oats, hops and vegetables. On the Puyallup, near Tacoma, are found the largest hop ranches on the coast. The soil is of amazing fertility; and the valley is far enough inland to be out of the range of the very cool winds which prevail over most of the Sound region. Fortunes have been made in the Puyallup hop trade; and others are yet waiting their turn. The hop business is one of those subject to sudden fluctuations. The demand is not yet large and steady enough to make a uniform price. When the hop farmer gets twenty-five or thirty cents per pound, he makes his fortune. The next year the price may be down to six, eight or ten cents; and he doesn't get enough return to pay for picking. The Puyallup hop fields yield from one thousand to two thousand pounds per acre. Prices during 1888 ranged from eleven to twenty cents per pound.

     The Indian reservation takes out a large part of this rich valley, though to the credit of these Indians it must be said that they too have brought much land into cultivation; and many of them are now industrious and intelligent farmers. But though there are a number of these rich valleys about the Sound, their aggregate area is not after all very great relatively. The major part of the land about the Sound is gravelly, or otherwise worthless for agriculture. Some of the beautiful islands throughout the Sound, as the San Juan group, or Vashon Islands between Seattle and Tacoma, have fertile sections of considerable size. The Archipelago of San Juan, and the Port Townsend and Whidby's Island sections, have a most remarkable climate. The proximity of the ocean gives them the same warmth common to all the coast region; but in addition to this there is something about the topography of the country which causes the rain to skip this region and hold its torrent in the air until it reaches the mainland on the east side of the Sound. Hence the section spoken of combines mildness with moderateness of rainfall to a degree not equaled by any part of Western Washington or Oregon, excepting the Rogue river valley. Some of these warmer islands offer unrivaled inducements to fruit culture. Land is as yet cheap, too, except in the immediate vicinity of  Seattle or Tacoma. In spite of these occasional rich spots on the Sound and its adjacent waters, the general fact remains that it is not a farming country, and never will be. Immigrants should understand that they cannot there find any considerable amount of land to take up.

     Moving from the Sound southward we pass wide areas of gravelly land, worthless for farming, and only barely fit even for grazing. This belt continues to the valley of the Chehalis. Here there is an entire change. The country now becomes densely timbered; and a rich soil is attested by the rank growth of every conceivable kind of bush and vine. The valley of Chehalis is growing very rapidly in population, and with one exception is the best and largest farming region in Western Washington. That one exception is the Cowlitz valley. This valley borders the Chehalis on the south. Having entered it



                                                                                                    AGRICULTURAL RESOURCES.                                                                109

we find ourselves on the waters of the Columbia. The available part of the Cowlitz valley is some forty miles in length by from two or three to ten miles wide. It os of exceeding fertility, rich, black soil, and is peculiarly adapted to dairying purposes.

     About its mouth and elsewhere along the course of the Lower columbia, which we will now ascend to Portland, are broad strips of the richest kind of bottom lands, flooded in the "June rise," and as soon as the waters subside becoming covered with the most luxuriant growth of grass, which sustains many dairy ranches. No class of farmers have grown rich as rapidly as the dairy ranchers on the Columbia bottoms, between the Cowlitz and Portland. Five or ten years of hard work usually suffices to "fix" one for life. The aguish climate common to such lands is a drawback; but, with proper care, it can be largely guarded against; and in all other respects these lands have every possible advantage. The central feature in them is Sauvie's Island. This extends between the main and lower mouths of the Willamette, being bordered by the Columbia throughout on its eastern side. There is in all quite a large area of these dairy lands around the mouth of the Willamette, as well as on the Sandy Lewis river, Lake river, Kalama and others, while the whole course of the Columbia between the Cascades and the sea, one hundred and eighty miles, usually furnishes a strip of bottom land from a quarter of a mile to two or three miles in width. Productiveness, climate and availability of market combine to render these lands most desirable; and immigrants make a mistake in not investigating their claims. Prices are yet very moderate. Besides these bottom lands along the Columbia, a great part of the hill land adjoining is of fine quality, easy of access, and to be obtained at very low prices or even at government entry. The hill lands along the columbia are of the finest for fruit culture. Peaches and grapes, not usually considered a successful crop west of the Cascades and north of the Calapooias, have been grown of the greatest size and finest flavor about Vancouver and Washougal and elsewhere on the benches adjoining the Columbia. Prunes are on their "native heath" here, to all appearances. A man who shall have got a twenty-acre prune orchard into bearing condition will need to do nothing more for a living. Land perfectly adapted to prunes can be bought on the benches of the Columbia for from fifteen dollars to fifty dollars per acre. One good crop at the fifth or sixth year of such an orchard will pay the total cost of the land, clearing and all. In speaking of the lands in this vicinity, we should not neglect to speak of the Lewis river valley. This is also fertile, accessible, and lands are very cheap. On the upper parts of it are large tracts of land yet subject to government entry, the valley of  Spilyei creek on the north side, being an example. A whole colony might settle there. There is also a large region extending from Vancouver and Washougal back to Lewis river, nearly all of which is the richest kind of land, and furnishes great quantities of hay and dairy products for the Vancouver and Portland markets.

     The discouraging thing to an intending settler, especially if he be from the Mississippi valley, is the dense timber. Though this is indeed a temporary drawback, yet the time will come, and that soon, when the owner of a quarter section of land may count himself fortunate to have a fourth of it timber land. Taken altogether, these rich and available lands, needing clearing indeed, but unsurpassed in nearness of market and variety of products, constitute a very large aggregate. they are found in Clark and Cowlitz counties on the Washington side of the river, and in Multnomah and Columbia counties on the south side.

     We have described these lands at length, for the reason that the rush of immigration has as yet neglected them. Most people do not duly estimate the advantages of nearness to market. To be within reach of Vancouver, with five thousand people, or Portland with seventy thousand, to be able to reach either by rail, steamboat, scow, rowboat or sloop, is an advantage which outweighs the transient disadvantage of having to clear timber off your land, especially when that same timber, if you choose to keep it a few years, will abundantly pay for itself.

     Leaving now the Columbia lands, we come to the Willamette valley proper. This great valley is the pride and strength of Oregon, the largest, richest and most available. It is almost the beau-ideal of a farming region. Its extreme length is about one hundred and fifty miles, and its average width about sixty. The lower portion and the adjacent foothills are generally timbered. The middle and upper parts are a wide and open prairie. It is in the main very level, the parts from Albany and Corvallis southward to Eugene being almost a "dead" level, too level in fact for sufficient drainage. There are several chains of hills in the lower part of the valley, such as the Waldo and Spring valley hills near Salem, the Amity and Chehalem hills in Yamhill and Washington counties, and the Portland hills west of that city and extending some distance south. The soil of the valley is in general a rich loam upon a strong clay subsoil. The upland soil is a coarser and heavier soil than that of the lowlands. The numerous clear, cold streams which rush down from the mountains on either side into the Willamette have strips of bottom land adjoining them. These bottom lands are of extraordinary richness and fertility. Lands on the Tualatin bottoms which have been cropped every year for thirty years have never been manured, and still yield thirty, forty or fifty-five bushels of wheat to the acre. The soil in some of these bottoms where the banks have been cut vertically by the stream is in places twenty feet deep of the richest loam. It seems inexhaustible. The various streams, such as the Tualatin, Yamhill, La Creole, Luckiamute and Mary's river, on the west side, and the Clackamas, Pudding, Santiam, Calapooia and Mackenzie on the east, do not have distinct valleys in their lower courses, but run across the general surface of the prairie, with little or no perceptible watershed between them. At their upper courses, ridges from the mountains make down between them.



110                                                      HISTORY OF PACIFIC NORTHWEST - OREGON AND WASHINGTON.

     Some of the most beautiful and productive lands in the valley are on these inter-tributary ridges. The stranger needs to be informed that, as the Willamette valley is a comparatively old country, having been settled largely forty years and more ago, it affords no opportunities in its level portions for entering government land. There are, however, in the foothills and plateaus of both the Cascade and Coast Mountains, thousands of acres of fertile land yet open for settlement. Personal inspection is necessary, of course, before one can satisfy himself as to a location on such land. Suffice it to say that the opportunity exists. The land is as good as there is outdoors, not difficult of access, and, though timbered and brushy, not difficult or expensive to clear.

     The foothills surpass the valley lands in healthfulness of climate, in variety of crops, in adaptability to fruit and grass culture, in purity and abundance of water, and in sundry other respects which make life better worth living. Aside from this constantly diminishing area of government land in the hill and plateau region, there are great quantities of land in the Willamette valley which are for sale cheap.  "Booms" seem foreign to the nature of this region; and people have as yet put no fictitious values on real estate. Uncultivated land ranges from four dollars an acre in remote localities to forty dollars or fifty dollars or more in the nearer vicinity of towns and markets. The finest kinds of farms, with buildings, fencing, orchards and all the paraphernalia of running, can often be purchased for twenty-five dollars or thirty dollars per acre, and this, too, in the comparatively near vicinity of towns and railroads. Thus, in the neighborhood of Hillsboro or Forest Grove in Washington county, or Dallas in Polk, or Gervais in Marion, farms can be secured at from twenty-five dollars to fifty dollars per acre. When wheat brings a good price, farms at such prices pay a very heavy per cent on the investment. Farming in the Willamette valley was formerly almost entirely wheat-raising. The wheat was of the finest quality and yielded immensely. The average for the valley has usually been as high as twenty bushes per acre, while many fields which were more carefully farmed yielded forty or even fifty bushels to the acre. On some of the rich Tualatin bottoms, as that of Gales creek near Forest Grove in Washington county, from forty to fifty bushels is commonly expected.

     In 1869, an average of fifty-nine and a half bushels was realized on the A.T. Smith place, then under the charge of E. Goodell. On the farm of John L. Hallett near Dilly, eighty-six bushels per acre were harvested. Other specific instances, duly authenticated at the time, could be adduced if necessary. Willamette valley wheat is extraordinarily plump and white, and makes the finest quality of flour. It is claimed that it commands the highest price in the Liverpool market. Formerly this valley far surpassed all other sections of the country combined in the aggregate of its wheat production.

    Now, however, the  production of the Inland Empire is greatly in excess of that of the valley. For various reasons, such as more timber, more rain, more weeds and other things, it is found that it costs much more to produce a bushel of wheat in the valley than it does east of the mountains. The estimate in the valley of the cost of raising a bushel of wheat varies from thirty-five to forty-five cents. The average seems to be about forty-one cents. The general statement in the Columbia basin is that twenty-six cents will prepare a bushel of wheat for market. The difference is surprising and not easily accounted for in the light of the comparatively small differences in the conditions of the two sections. But though the valley bushel costs fifteen cents more than the "bunch-grass" bushel, yet the difference is counterbalanced in favor of the valley by two facts. One is that valley wheat commands a higher price. Thus, during the year 1888, the price of valley wheat at Portland ranged from one dollar and a quarter per cental in January to one dollar and forty-five cents in November, while the Eastern Oregon and Washington wheat ranged at the same time between one dollar and fifteen cents and one dollar and forty cents per cental. The other fact is that the valley has a great advantage in nearness of market. The railroad tariff is twenty-three and a half cents per bushel from Walla Walla, and in proportion from other points. In consequence, the general price throughout the Inland Empire during the year named was from sixty to sixty-five cents per bushel, or from about a dollar to a dollar ten per cental, while the valley farmer could command an average of from one dollar and fifteen cents to one dollar and thirty cents per cental. These advantages of the valley are again neutralized by the fact that the eastern section surpasses it in average yield. This phase of the subject will, however, be discussed further on.

     The Willamette valley is now undergoing the same change which every new country must sometime undergo, as the pressure of population becomes greater and the struggle for existence fiercer, i.e., the substitution of mixed farming for wheat farming. Already the most intelligent of our farmers are beginning to realize the change, and to adapt themselves to it. This change is shown by increased attention to fruit culture to fine stock, and to the cultivation of grasses. The highlands have special adaptability to the raising of fruit. The Portland Heights, Mount Tabor, and the lands bordering the Willamette from Portland to Newburg in Yamhill county, have been the scene of most of the thorough and scientific attempts to raise fruit and prepare it for market. Prunes do especially well in such localities; and there is a great interest felt in this by all intelligent tillers of the soil. These same hill lands and the lands in general in the northern part of the valley are peculiarly adapted to grasses and clover. They are, therefore, the finest of dairy land. The effect of enterprise in this direction is being felt in the introduction of the choicest kind of stock. Jersey, Holstein, Guernsey, Alderney and other choice breeds of cattle are becoming common. The best breeds of horses, especially those for draft purposes and "all-around" use, are becoming the usual thing on Oregon farms. This topic is, however, treated of at greater length in another chapter, and hence need only be alluded to here in passing, as connected with the general subject of farming. To the same degree of improvement, poultry-raising, gardening and the other et ceteras of mixing farming are being carried.



                                                                                                    AGRICULTURAL RESOURCES.                                    111

     As it stands, therefore, now, in the valley, wheat-raising still greatly leads all other productions, but is not so great relatively as formerly. The oat crop is very large. Some barley and a little rye are raised. Indian corn does not make a good crop on account of the cool nights. All kinds of roots and tubers do well. Onions produce enormously. Of fruits, prunes, plums, cherries, apples, pears and all kinds of berries are unsurpassed anywhere. Peaches and grapes of good quality are raised in some places especially favored as to warmth, but in general are not successful. In short, for all-around farming, maintaining a high average throughout, it may be questioned whether the Willamette valley does not lead in the Pacific Northwest. The coast belt surpasses it in dairying alone;  Southern Oregon surpasses it in fruit alone; Eastern Oregon is ahead of it in amount of wheat (not quality); yet, for a good average of all of them, the Willamette valley, this first love of the pioneers, need not shrink from comparisons.

     The climate of the valley has been partly indicated already in the general account of the climate of the western division of the Pacific Northwest. It is warm and wet in winter, cool and dry in summer. The thermometer has fallen as low as five degrees below zero at Portland, and from thirteen degrees to eighteen degrees below in other parts of the valley; but this is very rare. It is unusual for it to go below zero, while the average of the winter is above the freezing point. During the long, drizzling rains of winter, the temperature ranges between forty and sixty degrees. The rainy season begins about November 1st usually, though this is subject to considerable variations. Sometimes it fairly "sets in" as early as the middle of September while in other years it is mainly dry till the middle of December. In 1888-89, the rainy season failed entirely. After the rainy season gets fairly under way, it continues with short, cold spells interjected, and sometimes little "dabs" of snow, until about the middle of March. Sometimes February is one of the finest months of the year. April, May and June are the cream of the year, scented with the perfume of flowers, mainly sunny, but with occasional warm and reviving showers, calm, invigorating beautiful. July, August and September constitute the dry season. There is usually no rain to speak of during these three months. The ground becomes exceedingly dry; yet, by virtue of properties in the soil or the air, such drought as would be expected in the East from such dryness is unknown.

     The usual temperature of the summer is low. There are a few days nearly every summer when the mercury rises to one hundred degrees or more; but ordinarily seventy-five or eighty degrees is the common figure on a summer afternoon. The diurnal change in temperature is very great. The mercury frequently indicates as low as forty-five or fifty degrees in the morning, but will rise to eighty or ninety degrees, or even one hundred degrees by three o'clock, falling again with great rapidity at the approach of night. This peculiarity of climate is very refreshing, though strangers have to guard against colds from so great a change; and many kinds of crops and fruits grow less vigorously. In the main it is healthful, though there is a certain languidness about it which is not felt on the sea-coast or on the other side of the mountains. It is singularly well adapted to the farmers' needs. The mild, long-continued fall gives him abundant time for seeding, while the long, slow spring renews the opportunity on the other side of winter. Then the long dryness of summer gives him remarkable advantages in the harvesting of his grain. Very seldom does any premature rain catch any farmer who has been at all "forehanded" in his harvesting. The rush of the immigration during the last decade has been to the government lands east of the Cascades, or to the sound, or to Southern Oregon. The Willamette valley has generally been passed by. Land hunters will do well to consider the advantages presented there. This much must suffice for a picture of this largest body of land west of the Cascades.

     Let us now cross the Calapooia Mountains on the southern boundary and become acquainted with the Umpqua valley, the second largest of our western valleys. The soil of this valley is not generally esteemed quite so rich as that of the Willamette; but it is of a quality to adapt itself better to some kinds of fruits. In surface it differs widely from the latter. It consists of a congeries of narrow valleys separated by low, oak-crowned hills of the most picturesque appearance. There are no great areas of level land. Winding vales, rounded slopes, sheltered nooks, occasional bold, rocky bluffs, combine to make up a scene of picturesque beauty unsurpassed on the coast of the Pacific Northwest. This diversified region, though somewhat irregular, is nearly circular in form, and from Roseburg as its geographical and commercial center has a radius of about thirty miles in every direction, being, however, considerably less than that between the exact east and west points. There are probably not less than two thousand square miles of land within the valley. This fair land produces very nearly the same crops as the Willamette valley; though, by reason of its increased warmth, it is better for corn culture, as well as for the finer and more delicate varieties of fruit, as peaches and grapes.

     On the oak-crowned knolls, and in the warm pockets facing south, fruits and berries and vegetables can be produced almost as early as in California. The fact that the Umpqua river empties into the ocean, and that the valley is, therefore, open to ocean breezes, and the added fact that it is but little elevated above the sea-level, gives it an exceedingly mild and equable climate. It has the same characteristics of wet, dry and intermediate seasons as the Willamette valley, but has less rain and decidedly more sunshine. The season is from two to four weeks in advance of the Willamette. The proximity of the ocean, and the rolling surface of the country (which insures good drainage), gives the Umpqua an exceedingly healthful climate. It is mild without being enervating. The low types of fevers which are more or less common in other parts of the interior valleys are almost unknown in this favored region. Here the valley lands proper were secured by the settlers of the forties and fifties; but, in the circlet of hills



112                                                                    HISTORY OF PACIFIC NORTHWEST - OREGON AND WASHINGTON.

which with park-like beauty inclose the valley, - a setting of gold around the emerald treasure within, - there are lands still unoccupied. The valley lands, too, are held for sale at very reasonable figures. Fifteen or twenty dollars per acre may secure good farms. No part of the Pacific Northwest is more likely to charm the traveler than this. The wide-veranded farmhouses, the vivid green of the oaks, the occasional bold bluffs in the distance, the general air of tranquility, all combine to soothe and cheer the mind.

     Beyond the Umpqua valley, and separated from it by a wide chain of very rugged hills, commonly known as the Umpqua and Cow creek hills, lies the third great valley of Western Oregon. This is the rogue river valley. It is slightly less in size than the Umpqua, but is mainly one level plain, so that its available area of cultivable land is probably equal. Bounded by the Cascades on the east, the Siskiyous on the south, and the highest part of the Coast Range on the west, this valley is lake a huge saucer. Its vast rim, averaging six thousand feet high on the south and east, and half as much on the west, seems to wholly isolate it from the rest of the world. And so, indeed, it wa for many years after its original settlement. All produce had to be hauled at least one hundred miles in wagons over the most tedious roads to market. The markets were Redding, California, and Roseburg, Oregon, each one hundred miles from Jacksonville, and Crescent City, one hundred and thirty miles away. With the advent of railroads, all the smothered business conditions were removed; and the wonderful natural attractions of the valley asserted themselves. It has been attracting more notice from immigrants than any other part of Oregon. It has been called the "Italy of Oregon." What now are the reasons for this interest and these encomiums on the Rogue river valley which have become so common? Let us see what we have there.

     It is the first place, there is a nearly circular valley, almost perfectly level, of about thirty miles in diameter. Around this is a foothill belt, but sparsely timbered, of excellent soil, easily accessible, of almost equal area. From the snowy mountains to the east, and the almost equally elevated region to the south, issue countless brooks and springs. These meander across the open prairie, their courses marked by luxuriant glades, in whose shady recesses are found groves of wild plums, interlaced with the rich, dark foliage of the wild grape. On the foothills may be seen the glossy trunks of the madrona and the disk-like leaves of the manzanita. The scraggly clumps of chaparral remind the traveler that he has been journeying southward. Above and beyond the foot hill belt is a lofty and largely open belt of mountains, the first chain, rich with grass, the ancient home of deer and antelope, but, since the exterminating war which "hide-hunters" have waged on them, the grazing ground of sheep and cattle. This valley has a soil in general like that of the Willamette and Umpqua, though, since it is less of basaltic and more of granitic origin, it is not quite so fertile, generally speaking, as the former. There are some large areas of black adobe in the lower parts of the valley, of extreme fertility, but very hard to work on account of their sticky character. One large region is known, is fact as "Big Sticky." The foothill lands are inclined to be gravelly, and are of a red color, resembling somewhat the red lands of California.

     The climate of this valley shows a great increase in summer temperature, and a great decrease in rainfall over other parts of Western Oregon. The common rainfall is from twenty-five to thirty-five inches, as against from forty-five to sixty for the Willamette valley. Though, owing to the greater elevation (about one thousand feet above sea-level) and the loftiness of the snowy heights around, it is no warmer in winter, yet it is much warmer in summer, than the other valleys west of the Cascades. The mercury frequently rises to one hundred degrees, or even as high as one hundred and ten degrees, and will reach that for a number of days together, a think unknown farther north. The climate is not so healthful as that of the Umpqua. The natural consequences of the added heat, together with the character of the soil, is that the Rogue river is the natural home of all sorts of choice and delicate fruits. Not as good a wheat country as Northern and Eastern Oregon or Washington, it confessedly has no equal in the Pacific Northwest as a fruit country. This is its distinguishing feature. Peaches, apricots, grapes, berries and melons from the Rogue river are ahead in time and excellence of any in the country. Rogue river strawberries reach the Portland market before the first of May. Let the shivering denizen of Minnesota think of that, who has scarcely taken off his ear-flaps and his nose-protector by that time. Figs even have been grown in some of the sunny nooks there. Apples, cherries, plums, pears, quinces and prunes do excellently well there, too, though the last are not quite equal in flavor to those raised on the Portland hills in the Willamette. The granitic soil of California and the Rogue river valley seems to have a greater natural adaptability to grapes, figs, melons, peaches, apricots, etc., while the volcanic soil of the northern and eastern parts of the Pacific Northwest seems to afford the natural conditions suitable for pears, prunes, cherries, apples and grain.

     Land in the Rogue river valley is already held much higher than that of other sections. This is due to its greater adaptability to fruit culture. There are, however, excellent lands, a little more remote from the towns, as in Sam's valley, on the Upper Rogue river, and at the lower extremity around Grant's Pass, which may be bought at a low figure, - from five to fifty dollars per acre, according to improvements. In the belt between Medford and Ashland, the home of the fruit business, and one of the loveliest spots on earth, having, too, good railroad facilities, land commands from fifty to two hundred dollars per acre. There is a very considerable body of unclaimed government land, too, in the foothill and mountain belt of the Rogue river valley, especially in the great region out toward what is known as the Dead Indian country, which would well repay the personal inspection of land-seekers. It is best, however, that all such understand that all these opportunities for free entry of land are being rapidly seized. This is true



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in every part of our domain. Even while these pages are in press it may be presumed that there will be a considerable change in the location of available land. Our advice to immigrants is, therefore, be speedy in your search. In going to any given locality, visit first the land-office, and get a diagram showing the vacant quarter sections in some given area. Then proceed to hunt.

     But too long already have we lingered in the lovely regions of Western Oregon. We must pack up and move. Then ho! for the sunny and treeless "East of the Mountains!" There are certain general features of the agricultural parts of the great middle section of the Pacific  Northwest which have already been described. You have learned of its dryness, of its treeless and rolling prairies, and of its abundant opportunities for the free entry of land. A few added points may be given as to its topography. First, the vast Upper Columbia basin is not, like the western section of the country, to be divided into different divisions and valleys. It is practically one immense, open, rolling prairie, about two hundred miles each way. Its natural mountain boundaries have already been sufficiently given. Owing to the elevation of most if  it, the rivers have cut their way deep into the surface.

     Different regions are usually spoken of according to the name of the river which drains them; but this does not imply that there is any natural separation of note between them. The Palouse and Spokane countries are not distinguishable; and the Walla Walla and Umatilla, though the watershed is much more marked, are essentially the same. The same general character of soil prevails throughout the whole basin, being more loamy and heavy towards the mountains and towards the northeast. It is, however, essentially the same soil, - rich, deep and wonderfully fine, as fine as flour, all the way from Spokane to The Dalles, and from Pataha to Ellensburg. This soil has been formed from the disintegration of the basaltic blanket which originally covered the whole basin. In the northern parts, and towards the mountains, the greater rainfall and cold, and more continuous growth of grass, have caused a greater accumulation of loam; and hence the soil is black and heavy, while on the lower land and near the Columbia it is light in both color and weight. Throughout, however, it has the ingredients necessary to produce wheat in greater ratio than any other known soil of the world. As in topography and soil, so in climate, the Columbia basin has a general sameness. It is dry, electric, stimulating, cold in winter, hot in summer, more or less windy (in some parts a good deal more than less). There is a regular and gradual increase in rainfall from the west and south to the east and north, and a corresponding decrease of temperature, though both these features depend more on the altitude than the latitude. More particular figures on temperature and rainfall have been given in the first part of this article.

     Portions of the Columbia basin require irrigation to start cultivation, and in some regions it is maintained regularly. The prevalent opinion seems to be that, after the thorough establishment of cultivation, the necessity of any addition to the natural moisture will disappear. The only parts of the Inland Empire, however, which are adapted to the laying off of irrigating ditches, are the different valleys which make up the great valley of the Yakima. This was apparently made on purpose to be irrigated; and systems for the purpose have been established on a grand scale. In the arid regions south of the Dalles, and about the headwaters of the Des Chutes, there are some narrow and exceedingly fertile valleys which lie so as to be susceptible of irrigation. In general, however, all that region is high and rolling; and water cannot be conveyed across it.

     There is one remarkable fact in regard to the entire Upper Columbia region, and that is that it needs less rain than any known part of the world. The soil is mellow and very deep. From the vast circlet of mountains around it there seems to come a system of subterranean natural irrigation, the best possible kind. Further, the winds of spring and summer seem to come loaded with moisture; and the porous soil drinks it up like a sponge. Sometimes, after a heavy west wind, vegetation throughout the upper basin revives as if from a heavy rain; and, though there may have been no rain for three months, the ground will be found to be fairly damp at a depth of a few inches. This natural substitute for rain makes it possible for crops to mature perfectly without any rain. The author has seen the finest vegetables - corn, potatoes, turnips, beets, onions, etc. - raised in the dry lands of the John Day without a drop of rain on them from planting in April to harvesting in September. Their quality, too, was of the finest. The fiber was extraordinarily fine and compact, and the flavor wonderfully delicate. From this sponge-like character of the soil in the Columbia basin, and from the unfailing supply of the aerial and subterranean reservoirs, it results that a rainfall of even a dozen inches, well distributed, will be enough to mature crops.

     It becomes, however, always a matter of intense interest tot he farmers of the Inland empire to watch the rainfall; and if April, May and June pass without rain, as has happened, many are the dubious headshakes, and many the gloomy prognostications, "Well, the climate has gone back on us this year!" But never yet, in spite of the scarcity of rain, has there been any serious shortage of the crops. In case of a failure of the rainfall, the grain stalks are commonly very short, and look as though they carried nothing in their heads. But come to harvest the unpromising straw, and it comes up with its twenty or thirty bushels to the acre pretty much as usual. The season usually advances much faster in the Inland Empire than in the Willamette valley, though starting later. This more rapid advance is due partly to the greater amount of sunlight, and partly to the warmer and mellower soil. Then, too, the cool sea winds which prevail in the Willamette in the opening summer check vegetation. From these facts, it results that though, on the first of March, vegetation in the Willamette is two or three weeks in advance of that in Walla Walla, yet, by the first of July, the latter is a month ahead of the former. The earliest places



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of all are along the Columbia and Snake rivers, in the frequent fertile patches of bottom land at the water's edge. Such places are Almota, Alpowa, Penewawa, Columbus and the mouth of the Wenachie.

     Such points can almost compete with California in the marketing of berries and garden stuff. Apples, plums, pears, new potatoes, green corn, tomatoes and cucumbers (of the choicest quality, too), are in the market before the first of July. There is in the aggregate a large quantity of such land, though it is usually found in small patches. In the Inland Empire, as elsewhere, the three vital questions are, What of soil, what of climate, and what of cost of production and transportation? We have briefly answered the first two queries. let us address ourselves to the third. What does it cost to raise a bushel of wheat? How much can I get to the acre? How much do I have to pay to ship it to market? We would say in answer to the first, that extensive inquiry among the heavy farmers of Walla Walla and Whitman counties justifies us in saying that twenty-six cents may be taken as the average cost of getting a bushel of wheat into the warehouse. This includes interest on land and machinery. We find considerable difference of opinion among farmers. George Bradbury of Eureka Flat estimates the cost on his thousand acres to be not over twenty-two cents, while Milton Aldrich of Dry Creek thinks that thirty cents would not be too much. Messrs. Drumhaller and Thomas, two other heavy Walla Walla farmers, would put the cost as high as thirty-four or thirty-five cents. They do not give this, however, as their own expense, but think that it would represent the average cost. Messrs. Stine and Reeser put it at twenty-one and twenty-two cents respectively. Without doubt, however, the most complete and accurate estimate that has ever been made was by Dr. N.G. Blalock. This active and versatile citizen of Walla Walla has raised the largest wheat crop of any man in the Pacific Northwest and has made a scientific study of the conditions of the country and the market. His figures are the more complete because, not being a professional farmer, and so hiring everything done, he brought it more entirely within a money measure. His experience is that, counting interest on land and machinery, and reducing every item to an exact cash basis, a bushel of wheat, delivered at the station at Walla Walla, costs twenty-four and one-quarter cents.

     Many other representative farmers have expressed their opinion as being about the same as these named. As will be seen, the cost is only about two-thirds that in the Willamette valley. This difference is so great that, taken in connection with the greater average yield, the wheat farmer of Walla Walla or Whitman county has a heavy advantage over the one of the Willamette. Now for the figures on the average yield of wheat in the Inland empire. We are almost afraid to give the facts in the case to Eastern people; but we can assure them that they are well substantiated by the most reliable of men, and, if anything about this country is to be believed, this is.

     In the first place, Washington leads all states or territories in the union in average yield. This has commonly been about twenty-five bushels to the acre. It is always to be remembered, too, that in these general averages we are obliged to reckon a vast deal of the most slovenly farming which is done in new countries by those who merely skim the land. Were the land here cultivated as it is in Pennsylvania or Illinois, it would double its average yield. To come down to a more specific statement, we note that the average in the Palouse country last year was forty bushels to the acre. But it is in Walla Walla and the parts of Umatilla adjoining that we find more accurately kept statistics of all these matters. We give some of the most famous and best authenticated. Dr. Blalock has a "patch" of wheat of twenty-three hundred acres in 1881, which in round numbers yielded forty bushels to the acre. A thousand acres of this was accurately measured off, and found to produce fifty-one thousand bushels. Separate acres in several instances were thought to yield eighty bushels. This prodigious yield has been surpassed, however, by Milton Aldrich of Dry Creek, Walla Walla. His field of four hundred acres averaged sixty-six bushels, besides two or three bushels to the acre wasted, owing to its being a little over-ripe when cut. Samuel Edwards harvested an average of seventy-four and one-half bushels to the acre on thirty acres. C.M. Patterson harvested an average of forty-seven bushels to the acre from eighty acres of "sod" land. But, of all the yields that we have ever heard of, the two following are the most remarkable; Thomas Gilkerson raised one hundred and ten bushels of barley to the acre on ten selected acres. Adam Rothrock, of  Centerville, Umatilla county, raised one hundred and six bushels of wheat to the acre on a patch of four or five acres. This last was on selected land, and was especially cultivated.

     Were it needful, figures similar to these could be brought from nearly every grain county in Eastern Washington. It is safe to say that there is no country yet open to man which equals the Upper Columbia basin as a natural wheat country. In 1887, the Walla Walla valley produced seven million bushes on less than a quarter million acres. This is not over a third of the available area; and what the product may be when it is all subdued, only the future can tell. Aside from the enormous yield, the Columbia wheat is very excellent in quality and of remarkable weight, always exceeding the standard sixty pounds to the bushel, and sometime seven reaching sixty-eight or sixty-nine. It is surpassingly rich and sweet, but is of a darker or more yellow hue than the Willamette wheat, and hence, owing to the fashionable notion that flour must be white, does not sell quite so high as the latter wheat.

     But with all these advantages which the Columbia farmer has, he has one serious drawback when it comes to the important question of transportation. Although the transportation facilities are great, and rapidly increasing, the monopolistic character of their managements has made freight charges very heavy. The inland farmer can get his grain to the railroads easily enough; but, when he gets it there, he has to divide profits with the railroad on something the same terms as the Indian did with the man who was going to divide the game on the basis, "I will take the turkey and you the crow, or you can take the



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crow and I the turkey." The freight tariff from Walla Walla to Portland, two hundred and forty-five miles, is twenty-three and a half cents a hundred. In most parts of the Inland Empire, it may be said to average about thirty cents. The railroad competition now inaugurated by the Hut system and others will, it is to be hoped, reduce these charges to a reasonable basis. This must suffice for a view of the general subject of grain-raising in the interior. There are, however, many other departments of farming open to the farmer here. The change in the style of farming, which inevitably comes with the present era of development, is going to make the raising of fine stock, of dairy products, of fruit, garden truck and poultry more and more common.

     Every year some new product is successfully tested in some part of the Inland Empire. Tobacco has proved a great strike in Yakima in the last year or two. In those same alluvial and irrigated valleys, as the Atahnam and Nahchess, are raised great quantities of hops. In the eastern part of the empire, around Moscow, Idaho, immense crops of flax-seed are produced. The stranger needs to be constantly warned not to be deceived by appearances. The Columbia basin, during a great part of the year, has, in consequence of the scanty rainfall, a parched and dusty surface. The bunch-grass, its natural covering, though so luxuriant, has a dull hue; and a stranger thinks the whole country a desert. He walks (as did the immigrants of thirty years ago) right over land that would produce thirty bushels of wheat to the acre, without once comprehending its value. This is especially the case with people from the Mississippi and Lake states, where, owing to the heavy showers of summer, the grass is kept constantly fresh.

     The next important question with intending settlers is: Where is the government land, and at what prices and under what conditions can land be secured elsewhere? In answer tot he first question we would say that the largest body of unoccupied farming land is in the "Big Bend", country. This has been entered very rapidly during the last two years, and will soon be gone; but there are still places for many more. This region is in Douglas and Lincoln counties. There is also much land of similar character in Adams county on the south. This country is in the main level, without timber, though on Badger Mountain is a fine body of good timber. The climate is rather drier than in the Walla Walla and Palouse countries; though, so far as tested, the soil seems to have the same marvelous power of withstanding drought. the soil os of the same general character as the rest of the interior; but, as we approach the river, there is more tendency to "scabby" land, by which is meant land with streaks of rock. But, in spite of these occasional defects, the "Big Bend" is the coming country of Central Washington. There are, however, some fine regions, which, though not so large in general areas as this, have been less culled, and probably afford a better chance for immigrants. The best of these is the region of the Rattlesnake Mountains in Kittitass county. Here is a land of wonderful fertility, mainly very smooth and almost entirely free from "scabs," and having a warmer climate than any part of the highland of the Columbia basin. It has two drawbacks; - timber is very distant, and water is a good way down. Still it will soon be brought under cultivation, and will show the same great capacities that other parts of our empire do. Immigrants are advised to examine the merits of this region. If you go there in the summer or fall, you will think the country a desert and will leave in disgust unless warned beforehand. But go slow. Don't be reckless. There are untold possibilities on those apparently desolate plains. Men who have had most experience in this country have the least fear of dryness. All that the settler needs to do is to keep his land well cultivated; and the "viewless winds" will penetrate it with moisture, and the glacial reservoirs of the mountains will let their contents trickle drop by drop into the strata underneath.

     The Rattlesnake Mountains are especially exposed to the visits of the Chinook winds in the winter, and in consequence are said to have a warmer climate than the greater part of the country south of it. Here more than anywhere else can the stockman perform his feat of letting stock run all winter with no feed except the bunch-grass, nature-cured, on the ground. Sometimes in the battle of the elements, in the eternal flux and reflux of the seas of air, the biting blizzard from the frozen northeast strikes the vanquished squadrons of the south in midheaven and turns their treasures of mist into fleecy flakes of snow. Then six, ten, or, in rare cases, fifteen or twenty inches of snow cover the boundless bunch-grass plains. Then the stock must paw for a living. Their weakening legs carry them less and less farther; and they begin to stretch out for a final surrender. Then, while the stockman looks anxiously around the sky for some sign of relief, suddenly he sees far away southward a blue-black line forming along the horizon. He goes to sleep happy, for the deliverance is at hand. In the night a roaring is heard. The prairies are taking breath. Bed-clothes begin to be uncomfortable. Dripping form the eaves begins to be heard. By morning the mercury has risen to sixty degrees; and great gaps are discernible in the snow. And still it blows, and by night the ground is bare. Sometimes to complete its victory it blows another night, till the humbled northeaster sullenly retires even from the lower mountains and takes refuge in the fastnesses of the Rockies. What has happened to all the snow? The ocean breathed upon it and it has gone. The stockman stands on a height of scab-land and surveys the scene with a countenance irradiated with joy and says, "Chinook, old fellow, you did a pretty good job that time. None too soon either." Such is the great Chinook wind, the osculation of the Pacific Ocean upon our western shore. The most remote parts of the Inland Empire are subject to its benign visits; and in consequence immigrants find it much easier to make their homes with scanty shelter than they do in the blizzard-ruled realms of Dakota.

     Besides the Big Bend and Rattlesnake Mountain regions, there are two other large sections in Eastern Washington as yet largely free to settlers, both of which have the same natural character and essentially the same advantages as those parts already taken. One is the Wenachie in the southern part of Okanagan county on the west side of the Columbia. Although the region is not large, it is rich and desirable. The



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other is the Colville valley in the eastern part of Stevens county. This valley has been settled in part for many years; but there is still much land not yet taken which will make very desirable homes. The Colville valley is quite different from other parts of the Columbia basin. Owing to the greater rainfall there, timber is found in considerable quantity. The valley is narrow and level, with high hills, clothed with timber on the sides. the whole appearance is more like one of the valleys of Western Washington than anything in the upper country. There are those who regard the Colville valley as the most promising point for immigrants. Spokane is the natural point from which to go to it; and the Spokane & Northern Railroad, now in process of construction, will descend almost its whole length.

     We have not yet spoken of the unoccupied areas of land in Middle Oregon. Look at your map and you will see a vast region without railroads, without towns, almost without inhabitants, extending from latitude forty-five degrees to the California line in latitude forty-two degrees, and about a hundred and fifty miles wide. This embraces southern Wasco and Gilliam counties, all of Crook, Lake and Klamath, and the most of Grant, an area equal to Ohio, and waiting for settlers. This is a more broken country than Central Washington; and there is much more waste land, both sandy and rocky. The climate too, is hotter and drier. It is not, in short, so attractive a region; and immigration has not naturally sought it so much. There are in it, however, many valleys of great beauty; and whosoever gets in first and gets the pick will account himself a lucky fellow. Largest and best of these valleys is the Harney valley in Grant county. Two beautiful lakes, Harney and Malheur, lie in the midst of the valley; and large areas of excellent land are yet waiting claimants. The proposed railroad operations of the Oregon Pacific Railroad and the Southern Pacific Company will bring this valley and the other arable lands of Central Oregon into market. But anyone who wishes to get his pick of the land would do well to get in before railroads arrive and bring their inevitable rush. Klamath and Lake counties are in general so elevated as to be uncertain for farming. Frosts are liable to occur in August. As stock countries they are unsurpassed. Such is a balloon trip over the lands in the central belt of the Pacific Northwest yet open to settlement. A detailed description of the settled parts of the country is beyond the limits of this chapter. We must, however, devote some space to the natural query which may arise in the minds of strangers as to the cost of lands in different regions, and the best places to buy. The price of land is generally low all over the Columbia basin. One might probably say in a general way that unimproved land can be obtained at from five to fifteen dollars an acre, according to location. In like manner the cost of improved land might be put at from ten dollars to sixty dollars.

     The highest priced lands and the most desirable places are in Umatilla and Walla Walla. While the land is no richer, and there is no more of it than in the Palouse country, yet the climate is so much warmer, and the advantages for fruit-raising so much greater, that it has a decided advantage. The best part of the Inland Empire, in all respects, is that part of Umatilla county lying between Pendleton and Walla Walla, and that part of the latter extending from Mill creek to the foothills of the Blue Mountains. It may be questioned whether there is in the United States a finer body of land for general farming purposes than these. When, however, we say that these lands are better for fruit culture than the Palouse country, we should make two important qualifications. One is that, on the lowlands along the southern border of Whitman county on the Snake river bottoms, are some of the best fruit lands in existence. The other is that, on the uplands of the Palouse, the hardy fruits do just as well, though a little later, as those of Umatilla and Walla Walla. The advantages of the latter are more in the delicate kinds of fruit.

     Vast quantities of strawberries, cherries, peaches, grapes and melons, besides the more common fruits, are raised in the Walla Walla valley. They find a profitable market in Portland, Spokane and the northern country in general. In consequence of this special adaptability of the Walla Walla lands to fruit-raising, the prices are above those of most other parts of the upper country. Good fruit and garden land within two or three miles of the city command from one to two hundred dollars per acre. On the creek bottoms, within ten or fifteen miles from town, the price is from forty to seventy-five dollars. The uplands are somewhat less. Perhaps forty dollars per acre would represent about the average price of choice land in the foothill belt within fifteen miles of Walla Walla. On the great plains north, and in the Eureka Flat country, prices are as low as twenty dollars or thirty dollars per acre. The prices in Umatilla county do not differ widely from those in Walla Walla. More remote from towns and railroads, land can be obtained in both countries for from five dollars per acre for unimproved to twenty-five dollars or so for well improved. Good quarter sections are frequently offered without improvements for one thousand dollars. There are thousands of acres of excellent land in Morrow and Gilliam counties which can be obtained very cheap, say from six hundred to one thousand dollars per quarter section.

     Heppner is the center of that trans-Umatilla country. Although the region around Heppner is drier and more rolling than that around Pendleton and Walla Walla, yet it contains essentially the same resources; and we cannot doubt that the time is near at hand when its vast sheep ranches will be broken up into farms. There is indeed still considerable government land in that region which, however, is being rapidly "corraled." In the Heppner country, as elsewhere in the Columbia basin, the stranger must learn to dispossess himself of the idea that the soil must be black to be fertile, and that there must be a thunder shower once or twice a week to make anything grow. People from the Mississippi valley, accustomed to the flat, black lands and summer showers, suppose themselves in a desert when they reach the rolling, gray praries of Morrow and Gilliam counties and see two months pass without rain. But be not deceived. That gray desert, with its dusty surface, will turn you off twice as much wheat to the acre and of twice



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