The Mt. Adams Sun, Bingen, WA., April 23, 1937, page 1



(By Theodor Suksdorf)


In the late fifties of the last century there were not many settlers east of the cascade and their were just a few counties organized may be only one, Walla Walla, taking all that territory south of the Snake river and parts of what is now Benton County and Klickitat County.      

At that time all the territory east of the Cascades was considered only fit for cattle ranges, except for Walla Walla country. At that time there lived at The Dalles a man, Ben Snipes, a cattle King. His cattle roamed all over that vast territory from the Cascades to the Columbia River and north to the British line. There were no settlers except a few along the north bank of the river. But his cattle did not come into the territory west of the Klickitat River. In 1859 some settlers across from The Dalles and further up the Columbia petitioned the legislature to set aside a certain territory for a new county and on December 20, 1859, a new county was created. As it might be interesting to many at the present time.       

Then the lines were in distinct, if answered the traditions at that time. As well be noticed the valley of the White Salmon river was not included in that county and no doubt was a part of Skamania county and was a therefore not affected by the new county.       

From the 1st of January, in 1861 the Joslyns kept a diary, which is in my possession. It gives not very many items of importance, but mostly cows, chickens and other animals and then about the weather.     

The most interesting part now, is the names of men that appear on those records, some were still here when the writers came. There were Henry, Steve from Hood River, Stanley who lived on the Raken place back of Stanley, Rusk, who was named after him. There was Underwood of Underwood. There were two brothers. It does not state which one, probably Amos Underwood, William Roberts, he had what is now the Bartholomew place, one of his children, Albert was the first white child born on this side of the river, Captain McNutz was very well-known to the writer.       

There also appeared the names of Benson, Stillwell, Butter, Whitting, Phelps, Penfield, Bancroft, Jenkings, James and Wilbur. None of those are known to the rider. Some of them may have been hired men by Joslyn some of them may have been settlers from Hood River or citizens from The Dalles. Apparently the Joslyns were very popular and had much company. The name of White Salmon was used by the settlers at that time. It was stated that, because the people on the Oregon side named their territory Hood River from their river (which before that time was called dog river) the people on the Washington side name their territory according to the river nearby.