The Hood River Glacier, Hood River, OR., January 4, 1906, page 1

Many New Projects Started
Thousands of Dollars Spent in Building and Improvements - City and Valley Progressive and Liberal

     During the past year many important events have transpired in the upbuilding of the city of Hood River and projects have been either started or finished in the valley that will mean much in the progress of this community. Thousands of dollars have been spent in bettering the conditions of property and in erecting new buildings, and thousands more are being spent in building railroads and for irrigating purposes.
     It was during the year just closed that the idea of building the Mount Hood railroad was born and put into execution. In a few weeks it is expected to have this road completed to its present destination, and the end of summer may see it pushed even further up the valley. While the railroad was built largely for the purpose of giving the new mill of the Oregon Lumber company an outlet for its products at all seasons of the year, it cannot help but prove of mutual interest to the railroad and those living along it to put into effect a passenger and freight service.
     The construction of the road has been the means of bringing no small amount of money into the city of Hood River during the year, and more is yet to be spent.
     The lumber business has received an added impetus by the of erection of the immense new mill of the Oregon Lumber company at the new town of Dee, which is said to be the largest mill in the northwest, and which is equipped to turn out anything from a lath to an 80 foot timber. Another large mill owned by the Stanley-Smith Lumber company was projected, and is nearing completion at Green Point, and will add its quota of business to the city during the coming year.
     Nineteen hundred and five also saw the erection of the new electric light and power plant at an expenditure of $30,000, and an almost like sum spent in the improvement of the water system. The new block of the Davidson Fruit Company was built, and also its brick warehouse, cold storage plant and ice making apparatus, and electricity installed in it in the place of steam.
     The Apple Growers Union built its new concrete warehouse and made better arrangements for handling and shipping fruit and 1905 can be written in big letters as the year in which the growers here received the highest price ever paid for apples anywhere.
     The past year was an active one in the building line, and it is estimated that at least fifteen new residences were erected. The new Catholic church was built and additions made to the city schools. Early in the year the freight station at the O.R.N. was completed and the passenger station remodeled during the summer.
     A new industry was instituted in the building of the cider mill and vinegar works, and many minor improvements were made to other business buildings about town.
     The banking facilities of the city were improved by the inauguration of a savings department of the First National Bank, and the prosperity of the valley indicated by the incorporation of the Butler Co. into the Butler Banking Company and the doubling of its capital stock.
     Merchants have had a profitable year, as has been shown by the opening of larger stores with better stocks. A number of new firms have gone into business and the outlook for trade next year is better than ever before.
     Considering the small amount of revenue at the disposal of the city government, it has accomplished much in the way of improvements and has handled the affairs of the city on a wise and economical policy. The passing of the ordinance for the construction of the sewer was one of the most important features of the year and indicates the spirit of progressiveness for which Hood river is noted.
     Educational facilities in the various districts throughout the valley have been bettered both in the matter of supplying teachers and in quarters for the pupils. It has been necessary to enlarge many of the school houses, and the taxpayers have not been backward in voting money for this purpose. In fact, they have shown a spirit worthy of emulation by many larger and wealthier communities in this matter. Money for good roads purposes has also been readily forthcoming. Several districts have agitated the matter of purchasing a rock crusher, and the coming year will probably see one or more of these machines at work making material for permanent highways.
     Irrigation has received its share of attention, and the Farmers' Irrigation company has discussed plans for improving its present plant, which it is expected will take definite shape before many months. The bonds of the Hood River Irrigating district, calling for an expenditure of $60,000 have been floated and approved and the end of the coming year will see a new and valuable waterway added to the resources of the valley.
     Last, but not least, it was during the year which has just run its course that the plan was given birth for the building of the north bank railroad. What its benefits may be to Hood River are yet an unknown quantity. It may prove a blessing or the opposite. However, it was one of the most important undertaking in this section of the country, and the marks a new era in the history of the Columbia river valley.
    A number of new projects of wide-spread importance have been promulgated by our neighbors across the river, the building of the proposed electric railroad up the White Salmon valley being one of them. The project as yet has not taken definite shape, but there is every reason for believing that it will do so.
     The new railroad now being built has already been the means of bringing considerable prosperity to residents in the towns of White Salmon, Bingen and Underwood, and the coming year will undoubtedly be the most important in the history of these places.

©  Jeffrey L. Elmer