The Hood River Glacier, Hood River, OR., October 27, 1904, page 3

By Roswell Shelley.

     Odell, Or., Oct. 13. - Odell is what may properly be termed the hub of East Hood River. The foundation being already laid there for a prosperous little village.
     Two years ago the Little White Store manager undertook what was called an experiment in establishing the first business house there, but with an abiding faith in the future of the valley, he laid his plans, and by constant work and economy is now in position to say to the public that his enterprise has passed the experimental stage.
     Today the business is upon a very satisfactory basis, and steadily gaining. It is not exaggerated when the assertion is made herein that no store in the famous valley of Hood River is better known than is the Little White store, situated at the junction of the Cloud Cap Inn and the Falls roads, seven miles from Hood River. As evidence of the above statement, lumber is now on the ground for another store.
     Odell has a church, school house, blacksmith shop and a store, with more to follow.
     And why all this activity? It is because Odell is centrally located in one of the most picturesque and prosperous little valleys of the Northwest. It is because we justly boast of these distinct advantages over other sections, which we beg to sum up briefly as follows: climate, soil and natural spring water.
     In this neighborhood you will find apple land that cannot be beaten in the world. You will also find hay and berry land that probably excels any other section, both in quantity and quality of the products; while the scenic effects are beyond description and meet fully the requirements of the romantic homeseeker, and the climate is all that could be desired by such as are worn in body and nerve.
     Sheltered by nature from the heavy winds that sweep up the Columbia; then looking northward and southward the valley seems guarded by the two snow-capped sentinels, Mount Hood and Mount Adams, the bases of which are covered with evergreen hills, while down below, the valley is dotted with green fields and the hillsides with the apples that bring $2.10 per box.
     East Hood River furnishes a text for many columns of good reading, and when the new orchards that have been planted in the last two years are in full bearing; the clover and berry fields enlarged as their future promises and they will be; the enterprise of dairying developed, and it will be soon; when the mountain forests yield up their treasures; the cars laden with the products of farm and forests are speeding up and down the valley with steam, or electric harness; when the rushing, roaring waters of Hood river, are tamed so that by pressing the button a thousand wheels will revolve and the factory spindle hum; when thousands of country homes will be lighted by electricity, then will Hood River valley be a land of milk and honey; a land far removed from poverty and want; a land where from every hillside will echo the chimes of church and school bells.

Some Odell Farms

     The first farm that one meets at the top of the Tucker's hill after winding up the steep grade, is the fine home of L. Plog. The residence, barns apple house and apple orchard are on the level bench along the main road, and both Mount Adams and Mount Hood are in plain view. There are 15 acres in bearing, and ten acres of young trees. Mr. Plog came here two years ago from Iowa, and while he made some mistakes the first year, has developed into a progressive fruit raiser.
     P.D. Jochimsen owns 80 acres south of the Plog farm, and farms the good old way. He does not like fruit raising, but has 30 acres in clover, 15 and wheat hay, and 20 acres summer fallow. He keeps ten cows and makes butter and his fine buildings and general thriftiness of the place shows that he is making a good profit.
     Rosco Miller is cleaning up most of his 40 acres, and has a small orchard set out, but will plant 700 more apple trees in the spring. He has also 14 acres in clover.
     C.M. Busey has a fine young orchard of eight acres, and the trees look as well as any in the valley. They are growing without irrigation, and are making a fine grove.
     Near the Little White Store is the William Ehrck homestead of 160 acres, there are 36 acres in orchard, ten of which are in bearing, and the farm is now producing a fine income. The crop this year will be about 2000 boxes of apples. In addition to orchard there are 50 acres in hay, wheat and oats. About 75 bushels of wheat and 100 bushels of oats were threshed for seed, the balance being baled for hay. Water from the Bone ditch just reached this section late this year, and next year can be used to double the crop of hay and grain.
     L.A.E. Clark is a new comer in the Odell district, having purchased 15 acres opposite the Wood homestead. He has a new house built, and is planting five acres to apples and about the same to clover. The balance of the place will probably be cleared this winter.
     John Kroeger has built a fine home on his 150 acre farm, and has 8 acres in orchard, 15 in hay and seven in garden truck and corn. He is steadily improving the place and increasing the apple and hay acreage. Mrs. Kroeger also has 80 acres which she homesteaded before her marriage.
     G.E. Bowerman is improving his farm of 30 acres, and now has nearly seven acres in apples and ten acres in hay.
     Going south from the Bowerman place about a mile through the timber the traveler comes to the fine 160-acre farm of Phillip Kollas. Mr. Kollas is a thrifty German farmer, learning the business thoroughly in the old country, and he has a genuine German vineyard and garden in the 20 acres cleared in the middle of this farm. Sheltered from the winds, his orchard of eight acres, his grapes and garden are making a fine growth. A large spring in the upper part of his farm supplies him with six inches of free water, which he has piped down to the house. Hydrants are located at various parts of his garden and he has the advantages of a city water-works plant. Flowers are blooming in profusion, and vegetables grow to enormous size. Out of his grapes he makes a fine wine and also has many to sell.
     Mr. Kollas raises his own nursery stock and is sure that he has the right varieties when he sets out an orchard.
     J.L. Tounsey is improving his place of 80 acres west of the Kollas place, doing a large amount of clearing this year, and has 7 acres in apples.
     Valentine Nehrbauer is living alone on his place of 60 acres adjoining the Tousey farm, but has made no improvements yet to speak of. However he intends to build a new house and clear a few acres this winter.
     Back on the main road is the James English place of 40 acres. About 12 acres are under the plow, mostly in apples. It is being steadily improved.
     G.W. Lafferty has a fine place of 30 acres, all but a few acres being cleared and in a well diversified number of crops.
     F.E. Runcorn is farming at 30 acres, and but a small portion of it is unimproved. Five acres are in bearing orchard, five acres in young trees, 15 in hay and two in berries.
     J.H. Eggert has leased the Charles Ehrck ranch of 120 acres in the Odell District for ten years, and has 40 acres under cultivation. Mr. Eggert said to the Glacier man: "I moved on this place in November, 1902, and leased it for ten years. Since then I have set out 300 apple trees -- Spitzenburg and Newtons, and had seeded ten acres to clover and timothy. This year I cut 27 tons of hay from six acres of clover. I expecd to devote the most of my time to raising hay and cows. This is an ideal farm for dairying, hogs and poultry, and diversified farming will pay well. Since the advent of the None ditch Odell district can now offer good inducement for a creamery in a year or two. As I am only a small farmer yet, I will say no more; but I am here to stay, and will try to make this ranch win out, along the lines I have mentioned."
     M.D. Odell is clearing up 40 acres along the main road leading to Dukes Valley, and has five acres in orchard and nearly two in strawberries. From his strawberries this year he cleared $175 -- practically $100 an acre. Mr. Odell claims to be the first white man born in Hood River, his birthplace being on the old homestead of his father, near the Little White Store, now owned by Robert Livingstone.

Between the East and West Forks

     The district between the East and West Forks, in the Mount Hood settlement, shows signs of extensive improvements this year. Considerable clearing is being done, and the land is as good as anywhere in the valley.
     H.H. Tomlinson is improving his 40 acres, having built a new house and cleared a large patch of ground which will be planted to apples, strawberries and hay. His old home is now owned by Orville Knox, who purchased the 40 acres on which the old building stands, and has cleared land mostly in hay.
     A.O. Johnson, C.A. Puddy and O.M. Bailey are all clearing land and getting the land ready for apples and hay.
     Albert McKamey has purchased about 20 acres cleared on his eighty, and this includes a small bearing orchard. Free water makes the place especially valuable, and reduces the cost of maturing his crops.
     Robert McKamey has about 20 acres cleared, mostly in hay.
     W.H. Rodenhiser has 25 acres in hay on his quarter section, and is building a new barn to take better care of his crop.
     Mrs. A. Ries is one of the pioneer settlers between the forks, and while only a small portion of her place has been cleared, she has a fine home place, and has of all the comforts of home life. She raises some of the finest berries in the upper valley on a small patch of ground, and has a nice family orchard. Her sons, Frank, John and Henry have places nearby, and are making improvements every year.
     The David Wishart homestead, now occupied by Mrs. Wishart, has about 40 acres in cultivation, and half of it is now owned by her son, James.
     Back a mile and a half from the main road leading to the Falls, are the Burkhart and McIsaacs places. Adjoining the Burkhart place is the lava beds, one of the imposing bits of scenery in the valley. These places are being made garden spots in the middle of heavy timber, and a large amount of clearing is being done. Near these farms is also 80 acres belonging to D.E. Miller, who cleared 15 acres and set to strawberries, but owing to the long distance from market, has set out the clearing to apples.

Mount Hood Valley
By Robert Leasure

     Mount Hood is located 10 miles south of Hood River and runs to the base of Mount Hood, a distance of ten miles, by about five miles in width with an elevation of 1500 feet. The soil is of a red sandy loam, generally very rich, and all kinds of vegetables are grown here, as well as all kinds of fruit that are adapted to the Hood River country. Clover and timothy hay grows very heavy, the former turns off from four to five tons of hay to the season at two cuttings, making one of the best openings for dairying in the Northwest, when the valley is opened up a little more. The country is well watered so it makes irrigation cost practically nothing. There is plenty of timber and considerable lumbering going on all the time.
     There are two sawmills in this valley, two stores, one church, one blacksmith shop, one public hall, and last but not least, one of the best schools in Wasco county outside of the city.
     The assessable property in our district was over $100,000, for school purposes last year. We have two teachers and will have a nine months school this year. Our climate is very mild in winter. It very seldom goes down below zero. There are about 125 voters in this valley, with room for at least three times that number.

From the Oregon Timberman

     James P. Cameron of the Menominee Lumber company has returned from a trip to Michigan, and reports conditions in the East very satisfactory. The sawmill will start up between now and January 1. Logging will be commenced about the 17th of the month, and about ten million feet will be put in the water. The company will have four million feet on the sticks, including about half a million feet of pine shop and better.
     The Wind River Lumber Co. of Cascade Locks are running their planing mill steadily and expecting to start the sawmill after the first freshet. The company has installed a shingle mill in connection with their already model plant, to work up their cedar economically. This company has a splendid body of soft yellow fir and pine timber on Wind River, Skamania county, Wash., from which it gets its logs. Manager Thompson says they find business very fair and have no cause to complain.
     Manager William Eccles, of Oregon Lumber Co. is in St. Louis on a pleasure trip. The company is operating its fir plants at Inglis, Oregon, and Chenowith, Wash., and the pine mill at Baker City. The Hood River sawmill is closed for the present, but will start about the first of the year. The logging camps have started up for this season's run. A new planing mill 48x100 is being built, which will be driven by a 75 horsepower Atlas engine. Smith & Watson Iron Works furnished the fronts for the two boilers. The company is building a crib 300 feet long, 12 feet wide and 6 feet high, at the mouth of the Hood River, to turn the logs during a freshet towards the mill. The company report business as good, both with its fir and pine mills. The timber holdings of the company now under control will aggregate nearly a billion feet.
     Davenport Bros.' Lumber Co., Hood River, are cutting on an average about 50,000 feet per day with eleven man at their Parkertown mill at the end of their six-mile flume. The logs will run about five to the thousand and are sound red fir, perfectly adapted for ties and structural material. The logs are turned on the carriage by two peavey men, who certainly for celerity of movement can give the modern log turner cards and spades and then beat them. The logs are hauled out of a pond 700 feet up a log haul, by a 9½x11 W.I. & S.W. engine, which makes a turn every ten minutes, bringing up 2000 feet of logs. The company is building a new mill at Green Point, about two miles from the present mill, which will be dismantled and moved to the Green Point site. The officers of the company are: President and manager, Frank Davenport; vice president and assistant manager, A.M. Kelsay; secretary, C. Copple, who is also in charge of the planning mill at Ruthton, which is the rail shipping point. Warren E. Davenport is superintendent and manager of the local yard, while F.E. Newby is superintendent of Mill B, as the Parkertown mill is named. The company has a good operating force. An order for 150,000 ties for the Short Line is now being filled. The timber holdings consist of about two hundred million feet of yellow, red and white fir, with a sprinkling of hemlock, larch and white pine. The timber lies at an elevation of about 2500 feet, and will run on and average about 50,000 feet per acre. The ground is gently rolling, making an excellent logging chance. The timber holdings of the company embrace a territory which stretches from the Mount Hood Forest Reserve to the Columbia River. There is probably 500,000,000 feet of additional timber which will find an outlet to markets through the lands now owned by the Davenport Lumber Co. The timber is perfectly sound, with little underbrush and can be manufactured and sent to market by the aid of flumes at a minimum cost.

©  Jeffrey L. Elmer