MURDER ON GALICE CREEK.--A correspondent of the Jacksonville Sentinel states that Mr. H. J. Harrison was shot dead by a man named G. W. Cups, November 23rd, on Galice Creek. No cause is assigned for the committal of the dead, both parties being strangers to each other. Harrison was about forty years of age, and generally known by the name of "General Harrison." He was a Carolinian by birth, and a graduate of one of the Southern colleges. He has been living in California and Oregon since '49, and has led a somewhat checkered life. He served as a volunteer in the second regiment, during the late Indian war, and since the close of hostilities has been engaged in mining on Rogue River. He leaves many friends to mourn his sad fate.
----By the Sentinel we learn that a new mail route has been established between Jacksonville and Crescent City, via Waldo (Sailor's Diggings), Kerby (Kerby's Ranch, Illinois Valley), Vannoy's and Gold River (Evans' Ferry). Post offices have been established at Waldo, Kerby and Vannoy's.
Weekly Oregonian, Portland, January 10, 1857, page 2
Hutchings' California Magazine, for January 1857, has come to hand. It opens with a "Happy New Year's Address," and with increased attractions throughout. It has a truthful sketch of Jacksonville, Southern Oregon, among its other good things, well worth looking at.
Weekly Oregonian, Portland, January 17, 1857, page 2
SHOOTING AT JACKSONVILLE.--From some gentlemen who arrived in town on Monday evening, we learn that a man named Jack Driscoll was shot at Jacksonville on the 18th inst., by Bob Williams. The cause is said to have been an accusation made by Driscoll that Williams was at the head of a band of horse thieves. On meeting Driscoll, Williams shot him with a double-barrel shotgun, loaded with buckshot, five of which entered his abdomen. Williams then snapped the other barrel at him, mounted his mule and rode off. Driscoll managed to support himself by holding on to a post, and in that position fired five shots at Williams as he was leaving. The sheriff pursued Williams for a short distance, and then returned, while Williams went eight miles to Sterling and remained that night, leaving next morning for parts unknown. At the last accounts Driscoll was still living, but it was impossible for him to recover.
Crescent City Herald, January 28, 1857, page 2
A correspondent of the Jacksonville Sentinel states that Mr. H. J. Harrison was shot dead by a man named G. W. Cups, recently, on Galice Creek. No cause is assigned for the committal of the deed, both parties being strangers to each other.
"Resume of San Francisco News," Sacramento Daily Union, February 3, 1857, page 3
SHOOTING AFFAIR AT JACKSONVILLE.--On Sunday, the 18th January, a man named Jack Driscal [sic] was shot by another known as Bob Williams, at Jacksonville, Oregon Territory. Driscol [sic] was living at last accounts, and Williams had fled.
Sacramento Daily Union, February 4, 1857, page 2
"Fifty-three years ago, February 5 [sic], 1857, I drove into Jacksonville for the first time," says D. J. S. Pearce, in a recent issue of the Mail Tribune. "I was looking for some relatives, the Chambers family, and halted in front of the Table Rock Saloon, then conducted by the late Herman Helms. While I was talking with Mr. Helms and inquiring about the proper direction to take, I heard a shot behind me and a man reeled out of the cross street in front of the present town hall and fell almost under my horses' feet. I was used to the West at that time, but I must confess my first five minutes in Jacksonville were exciting. The man killed was Jack Driscoll, and he was shot by Walt Williams because he knew too much about the lawless operations of Williams and his gang. Williams escaped and was never heard from for years, until he was seen in Idaho. He afterward met the usual fate of the early-day bad man. What called my attention to this almost forgotten story was that the 5th of February, 1857, was a day as nearly like the 5th of February, 1910, as you could make them. The events of that day impressed the weather upon my memory."
Ashland Tidings, February 10, 1910, page 4
SCHOONER LOST.--From a gentleman lately down the coast, we learn that a few days since a small schooner bound from Port Orford to the mouth of Rogue River with some six tons of goods missed the channel in attempting to enter the river, and was lost. There were three men on board, one of whom got ashore safe, one was drowned, and the other drifted off to sea with the schooner. We could not learn the name of the schooner, or that of the men; they were Italians.
Crescent City Herald, February 11, 1857, page 2
LYNCHING AND SHOOTING.--On Saturday last, John Collins, a mulatto barber, of this place, was treated to about forty lashes on the bare back, for the offense of attempting at night to enter the bedroom of some of our most respectable citizens.
After he had been lynched, and the crowd had dispersed, a man named Charles Wright shot him in the right cheek, the ball knocking out several teeth, splitting the jawbone and passing between the main artery and the windpipe, and lodging in the back part of the neck. It is thought that he will recover, although the wound was a dangerous wound.
Wright fled, and has not yet been arrested.--Table Rock Sentinel.
Oregon Statesman, Salem, February 17, 1857, page 2
Information was received by the last steamer, through the Atlantic and Pacific Express Company, at San Francisco, that A. Spencer Graham, formerly of this city, had died at Jacksonville, Oregon Territory.
"News Items," New York Evening Express, February 18, 1857, page 3
AFFAIRS AT JACKSONVILLE.--On the 17th ult. a mulatto barber, named John Collins, was served with forty lashes on his bare back, for attempting to enter the bedrooms of some of the citizens. Afterwards, he was shot by a man named Charles Wright, in the right cheek, depriving him of several teeth and splitting his jawbone. The ball lodged in the back part of his neck. The wound, however, is not considered dangerous. Wright had fled.
On the 18th, R. L. Williams, or "Bob Williams," shot a Mr. A. J. Driskell, in the street, with a shotgun loaded with buckshot. Williams immediately fled and has not been arrested. Driskell died on the 22nd. The affair was caused by Driskell stating that Williams was connected with a band of horse thieves ranging between California and the Dalles of the Columbia. Driskell made an affidavit before his death, implicating a number of these thieves.
Weekly Oregonian, Portland, February 21, 1857, page 2
The Table Rock Sentinel, printed at Jacksonville, O.T., occasionally comes to hand. It grows small and "beautifully less" every issue. Why don't the Democracy of the south rally and sustain the defender of their faith?
Weekly Oregonian, Portland, February 21, 1857, page 4
The Sentinel complains that the mail is "toted" to and from Jacksonville on horseback, in "old rotten sacks, without locks, and tied up with tow strings."
Well, that is all in very good keeping with the "rotten" matter sent off by the "rotten" organs of "rotten" officials, appointed by a "rotten" administration.
Oregon Argus, Oregon City, February 21, 1857, page 2
Texas and California.A correspondent, "New Yorker," draws a parallel between Texas and California, and after showing that the debt of Texas was paid by the United States government for her claim upon New Mexico, suggests that it would not prove a bad plan for California to present a claim for Carson Valley &c., and demand some $50,000,000 from Uncle Sam to induce her to settle and become again good natured. While we admit that a claim of that character would not be a whit more absurd and groundless than that of Texas to New Mexico was, we are inclined to think that probably a more formidable claim upon the general government may be raised, and sustained. Two years since, certain distinguished gentlemen (two of whom have since become celebrated in Nicaragua affairs) devised a plan for organizing a purely Pacific Coast party. One of the main planks in their platform was the formation of some six or more states on the Pacific side, in order to give us weight and importance, politically, at Washington City. Four were to be made out of the present territory of California, with a strip of Southern Oregon to be added to the north California state. The other two were to be formed from the territories of Oregon and Washington.
Another leading plank was the declaration that the public land lying within the boundaries of California belong to the state in her sovereign right, and that she had never transferred her title to the general government. Had it been then anticipated that a condition of things like those which now surround the state would so shortly follow, it would have been an admirable stroke of grabbing policy for the claim to have been set up earnestly by the New Pacific Party, and by this time the state would have been in a favorable position to have demanded from Congress some $10,000,000 for her claim to land which honestly belongs to the United States. A claim of this character would be just as well founded as was that of Texas for New Mexico, and, we think, much better. If presented and persisted in, why could not our state finally sell her claim to the public lands and minerals in the state to Congress, for a much greater sum than Texas received, and if Congress would not buy, she could turn in and sell out her right, title and interest to any persons who might be willing to buy, as Sutter's trustee proposes to do?
But there is a legitimate point where the state has made a formal claim upon the general government, which is well founded, and which we are pretty confident she will be able to maintain. And if she does maintain the same, she will recover from Uncle Sam nearly a sum sufficient to discharge her present indebtedness. We refer to her claim to what is termed the Civil Fund. Upon this fund California has an equitable claim, and one which was recognized very generally by the United States officers who collected it, during the time which elapsed after she had applied for admission into the Union, and the date of her admission. Here is a claim altogether better founded than that of Texas, for which the Union paid $10,000,000, which our friend "New Yorker" may urge with a prospect of ultimately succeeding. A claim on Utah Territory is rather too far from home.
Sacramento Daily Union, February 21, 1857, page 2
DESPERATE SHOOTING AFFAIR IN SOUTHERN OREGON.--The Jacksonville Sentinel, of January 24th, gives the following account of a shooting affair which took place:
"On Sunday, the 18th instant, Jacksonville was the scene of great excitement. About 2 o'clock p.m., as A. J. Driskell was crossing the street from Brunner & Bro's. store to the bakery, R. L. Williams stepped out of the market house between the bakery and the El Dorado, and taking a rest against a post, exclaimed to Mr. Denby, who had stopped and was speaking to Mr. Driskell, near the middle of the street, to "get out of the way," and immediately fired one barrel of a double-barreled shotgun loaded with buckshot--five of the balls striking Driskell in front and passing through the intestines, lodged in the back. Driskell turned, ran a few paces and fell; he immediately got up, drew a revolver and commenced firing at Williams, who was running across the street to Maury & Davis' corner; he fired four shots, none of them taking effect. After Williams reached a position where was protected by Maury & Davis' brick store, he crawled back to the corner, with his shotgun in the position of a man slipping onto a deer for a shot. Driskell had then gone into Brunner's store. Williams then ran to Davis & Taylor's livery stable, where he had his horse already saddled, and mounted and rode off in the direction of Applegate. He was followed to Applegate, and there the chase was given up. No further effort to take him has been made. Driskell lingered in great pain until Thursday night, when he died of his wounds. The deceased was from Sangamon County, Ill., and has for the last two years been in the mines in Josephine County. Driskell had stated that Williams and others were connected with a band of horse thieves, from somewhere in California to the Dalles, in Oregon. We are informed that Williams was seen riding along the road in the direction of Yreka, on the south side of the Siskiyou Mountain, on Tuesday last. He is no doubt in Yreka, making preparations to start to Sonora. Before Driskell's death, his affidavit was taken by Justice Hoffman, which implicates a number of men as being connected with a band of horse thieves."
Sacramento Daily Union, February 23, 1857, page 3
THE RAINS IN SOUTHERN OREGON.--During the last week of January the waters in the southern part of Oregon were much swollen, and the snow had disappeared. At Sucker Creek a lump of pure gold, weighing twenty-four pounds, had been taken out of the claim of McDonald & Co.
----ATTEMPTED SUICIDE.--In Jackson County, Oregon Territory, on Friday, the 23rd February, Wm. J. Newton, a highly respectable citizen, in a fit of derangement, attempted to commit suicide by shooting himself. The ball entered under his chin and lodged back of the left eye. Hopes of his recovery were entertained.
Sacramento Daily Union, February 23, 1857, page 2
LAUNCH.--The schooner Fanny (formerly the Gold Beach), having been refitted and, in fact, almost rebuilt in fine style, was launched on Saturday last, took in her cargo, and sailed the same evening for Rogue River. She had about nine tons of freight, and several passengers. Success to her.WAGON ROAD.--We see by Oregon papers brought down by the Columbia, for which we are indebted to the American Express, that the bill introduced by Mr. Matthews of Josephine County, entitled "A Bill to Locate a Territorial Road from Jacksonville to the California Line,'' has passed both houses of the Oregon Legislature and become a law. Mr. Matthews will confer a favor by sending us a copy of this bill.
Crescent City Herald, February 25, 1857, page 2
Crescent City Herald, March 4, 1857, page 2
FROM JACKSONVILLE.--We are indebted to Mann's Express for the latest Table Rock Sentinels that have been issued. The Sentinel seems, however, to have been compelled to stop for a while in consequence of being entirely out of paper. Their latest issue was of February 7th, and we fear their prospects of receiving a supply for some weeks are very bad. This is one of the difficulties of publishing a paper in remote mountainous regions, the annoyance of which can only be appreciated by those who have experienced it. We hear of no news at Jacksonville.
Crescent City Herald, March 11, 1857, page 2
SOUTHERN OREGON MINES.--A correspondent of the Trinity Journal, writing from Jacksonville, O.T., February 20th, says:
"Hydraulics are now brought into requisition here for the first time. A few miners from your section of country, who came in here last fall, have done more to develop the richness of the mines in this vicinity than our miners have for the last two years. The mines on Jackson Creek are in great part worked by miners from Shasta and Weaverville, while Sterling, Applegate, Evans', Palmer and Galice creeks and their tributaries are well represented by men from those two noted mining localities.
"A few days since a party of miners from California arrived here for the purpose of prospecting the Jacksonville flat. They immediately went to work and sank a shaft in the street on the north side of the Robinson House, and found seven feet of paying dirt. On the bedrock it prospected from two to six bits to the pan. The party are now digging a tailrace to drain the entire flat. The town from Oregon Street to near Clugage's mound is staked off into mining claims."
Sacramento Daily Union, March 11, 1857, page 2
The Table Rock Sentinel, published at Jacksonville, in the mountains far beyond the California line, had been obliged to suspend temporarily for want of paper, nor is the prospect good for getting in a supply at present.
"Later from the North," Daily Alta California, San Francisco, March 16, 1857, page 1
Quite Lucky.A trader from Rogue River Valley, on his way to Crescent City, a few days since, had his mule swept from under him in crossing a creek a few miles from that town, having on it his saddlebags containing several thousand dollars. He only saved himself by clinging to some bushes which he fortunately grasped. He came on to town, and on returning the next day found his mule some mile and a half below where the accident occurred. The mule was dead, but the saddlebags were recovered, with all the money.
Daily Globe, San Francisco, April 7, 1857, page 3
ROAD TO CRESCENT CITY.--Now is the time to urge the location and opening [of] a road to Crescent City. The spring, summer and fall seasons are the only time that a thorough examination can be effected. Then let the good people of Jackson and Josephine counties apply themselves earnestly to the subject. If a wagon road can be made from Crescent City to the Illinois Valley, then the question is settled that all our merchandise must come by the way of Crescent City. We have not been able to learn what the good people of Crescent City did in relation to organizing a company to locate a road and cause it to be opened from that place to Illinois Valley.--T. R. Sentinel.
We are happy to inform you, friend Sentinel, that the people of Crescent City and vicinity are doing everything in their power to push forward this work, so important to your citizens, as well as ours. Commissioners have been out every day for the last two months in which the weather would permit them, and though as yet we have no definite report from them, still we know that a much better route than the one before surveyed can be obtained, one on which as good a road as any in the state can be built. Their report will probably be made in the course of three weeks. They are now on the road.
For ourselves, we have no doubt but that the road will be built this summer. But we shall need some help up your way, and we look to you to show the importance, nay, the necessity of this road to the people of your valley, so that when called upon to take stock they will thoroughly understand the matter. It is of even more importance to the people of the interior than to us that this road should be built, for it is out of their pockets, as the consumers, that all expenses on merchandise fall, and nothing will so soon or so sorely reduce those expenses as the completing of this work.
"Take off your jacket, and roll up your sleeves," Mr. Sentinel, "cry aloud and spare not," on this theme, until they serve you as they did us, and sing out "wagon road" after you as you move about town.
Crescent City Herald, April 8, 1857, page 2
STABBING.--On the 7th April, says the Shasta Courier, in Rogue River Valley, a difficulty occurred at a horse race, between a man named Helm, alias "Old Texas," and Mr. Reuben Breed, of Yreka. Breed was so badly stabbed that his life was despaired of. Helm made his escape.
Sacramento Daily Union, April 21, 1857, page 2
BLOODY AFFRAYS IN SOUTHERN OREGON.--By the way of Yreka we have intelligence from Southern Oregon, thorough the columns of the Jacksonville Sentinel, up to the 11th April. The whole community seem to have been thrown into a state of great excitement by numerous bloody affrays which had occurred there. The Sentinel says:
On the 9th inst., a man named Isaac Tubbs entered the cabin of Wasmuth, for the purpose of murdering him, and before Mr. Wasmuth could escape plunged a knife into his breast. The assassin escaped, but was afterwards arrested. On the following morning, two hundred miners assembled, with the view of lynching the prisoner. He was at length delivered into the hands of the Sheriff, who has him in custody. The Sentinel thinks there is no doubt of his guilt.
On Monday, April 6th, another fatal affray occurred at Gilberttown, on Evans Creek, in which a man named Smith was killed by another by the name of Kelly. There appears to be a difference of opinion in regard to the matter, some alleging that Kelly acted merely in self-defense, while others consider the act by no means justifiable.
In addition to the above, the Sentinel also says: "We learn that on Wednesday night, the 8th inst., on the left fork of Jackson Creek, the firing of a pistol and the shrieks of a man were heard, since which time a miner, whose name we did not learn, has been missing."
Sacramento Daily Union, April 24, 1857, page 2
STABBING.--Reuben Beard, of Yreka, was stabbed in two places, on Friday, April 10th, on the race course, at Jacksonville, Oregon, by a man named Helm. It was first thought the wounds would prove fatal, but he had arrived safely in Yreka.
Sacramento Daily Union, April 27, 1857, page 2
NEW STAGE ENTERPRISE.--It is reported that a stage will soon be run from Jacksonville, to the foot of the mountain in Illinois Valley, at the point where the mail from Crescent City comes in.
Daily Globe, San Francisco, April 28, 1857, page 3
THANKS.--To Mann's Express, for a copy of the Table Rock Sentinel, of the 25th inst. It is, as usual, perfectly full--of Oregon politics, and--nothing else.
Crescent City Herald, April 29, 1857, page 2
FROM OREGON.--The schooner Umpqua arrived from Umpqua River yesterday, and Capt. Finsdale of that vessel says that the lighthouse stuff was safely landed at its site. The workmen are preparing the foundation, and the building will probably be completed by the middle of September. The tower is to be eighty feet high below the lantern, a third-order Fresnel.
Considerable anxiety is felt at the mouth of the Umpqua about the Indians upon the Coast Reserve. They are quite discontented, and threaten to return to their homes on the Klamath and Rogue River. Capt. Steuart [sic] is prepared, as far as possible, to intercept their southward march and prevent their crossing the river, but it is feared the small force of sixty men under his command will not be sufficient. The Indians number at least 500 warriors, and, according to the best accounts, one-third of them are well armed. They comprise the fiercest of the southern band. It has cost two bloody and expensive wars to get them under. It would be a dreadful calamity to Southern Oregon should they get back. The mountains along the coast are filled with detached parties of prospectors and miners, following out the gold discoveries of the Six and Coquille rivers, who will be completely at the mercy of these revengeful Indians should they return, and that they will return, or at least make the attempt, is the settled opinion of those who are at present here.
The spring in the Umpqua Valley is very promising. Vegetation is far advanced; grain looks well; rain occasionally occurs; no signs of grasshoppers. The roads are in excellent order. Wagon freights are much reduced. Bridges are to be built over the crossings of the Umpqua with the last appropriation of Congress for the purpose, $6000. A new road is to be opened down Elk Creek, connecting Lane County with Umpqua.
Sacramento Daily Union, April 30, 1857, page 3
We see by the Jacksonville Sentinel that the people are getting quite bloodthirsty out there. On the 6th ult. John Smith was shot by Thomas Kelly on Evans Creek. Kelly says he killed Smith in self-defense, and did not fire upon Smith until he had fired twice at him (Kelly). Those in the vicinity of the affray doubt the story, as they only heard one shot, and that was followed instantly by the shrieks of a man in distress.
On Wednesday night, a pistol was heard on the left fork of Jackson Creek, followed by shrieks, and the next morning a man was missing. On Thursday night, on the same creek, Isaac Tubbs went to the shanty of John Wasmuth, and calling him a "bloody rascal," plunged a knife into his left breast, and turned the knife before he drew it out. Wasmuth was supposed to be mortally wounded, although some hopes were entertained of his recovery. Tubbs was taken into custody.
On the 10th ult. one Helm assaulted and stabbed Reuben Reed, on the race course near Jacksonville. Helm fled to California.
On the 11th ult. Robert Patterson was murdered by one Vincent Cunningham, in Illinois Valley. Cunningham went to the house where Patterson was stopping, and called him out, when he stabbed him several times with a bowie knife. They had previous to this had some difficulty. Cunningham fled. The sheriff of Josephine County offers a reward of $500 for him. He is said to be 28 years old, five feet and ten or eleven inches high, weighs about 170 lbs., has light curly hair, small grey eyes, and has had the point of his nose bitten off.
Oregon Argus, Oregon City, May 2, 1857, page 2
BURGLARIES,--A number of extensive burglaries have recently been committed near Jacksonville, Oregon Territory.
Daily Alta California, San Francisco, May 18, 1857, page 2
LATER FROM THE INTERIOR.--Just before going to press, we received through the kindness of Mr. Simonsfeld the Table Rock Sentinel, of the 16th instant, and the Yreka Union of the 14th. The Sentinel has discovered the fact that when the road from here to Illinois Valley is built, they will get their merchandise at that place ten percent cheaper than at present. What a brilliant calculation!!! Somebody ought to wake him up; he has slept a long time now.
The Chapman family have been playing at Jacksonville, and will be down here in a few days.
The Josephine County Democratic Convention nominated M. C. Barkwell and S. B. Hendershott for delegates to the convention to form a state constitution; R. S. Belknap, for the Assembly, from that county and Jackson jointly; J. G. Spears, for the Assembly from that county alone, and Dr. D. S. Holton for judge of probate.
The stages run now from Jacksonville to Yreka three times a week.
An old gentleman named Lane, living six or eight miles from Jacksonville, was murdered a few days since, by having his head split open with an axe. He was supposed to have ten or twelve thousand dollars in money in the house, which was doubtless the cause of the murder, but we cannot learn that the villains obtained the money.
Crescent City Herald, May 20, 1857, page 2
This man, formerly a resident of Shasta, was caught robbing a house near Jacksonville, Oregon. News reached Shasta last week that he had been hung by a mob. But this is not so; he is in Yreka jail.
Daily Globe, San Francisco, May 20, 1857, page 4
MURDER AND ROBBERY IN OREGON.--The Yreka Union has received information from Southern Oregon of outrages in that quarter. On Friday, the 8th of May, an old gentleman named Lane, living near Fort Lane, eight miles from Jacksonville, was found dead in his cabin, and it was supposed he had been murdered on Wednesday or Thursday night preceding. The Union says:
"The assassins had hoodwinked him and then split his head open with an axe. Mr. Lane had been engaged in gardening, and it was supposed he had some ten or twelve thousand dollars in money in the house.
"A party of villains entered a house near the head of Rogue River Valley, some time previous to the above occurrence--the exact time we have not been able to learn--for the purpose of robbing. They were surprised by the return of the occupant before they had completed their work, who fired on them and wounded one of their number. A man by the name of Nobles, formerly a resident of this county, has been arrested on suspicion of being concerned in the robbery, and was to have had his examination on last Tuesday.
"As an instance of the manner in which rumor runs and accumulates, and the caution with which it should be received, a report obtained considerable currency in town a few days ago that Nobles had been arrested on a charge of being concerned in the murder of Lane, that he had subsequently killed the jailer in attempting to escape, and had been taken and hung by the populace. It turns out that he could not have been implicated in the murder, as he was in custody at the time it was perpetrated."
Sacramento Daily Union, May 20, 1857, page 1
ATROCIOUS MURDER IN OREGON.--By the overland route from Lower Oregon, we learn of a horrid murder having been committed on the person of an old gentleman named Lane, living near Fort Lane, six or eight miles from Jacksonville. He was found dead in his cabin, a day or two after the fatal deed was done. The Yreka Union furnishes us with the following particulars: The assassins had hoodwinked him and then split his head open with an axe. Mr. Lane had been engaged in gardening, and it was supposed he had some ten or twelve thousand dollars in money in the house. A party of villains entered a house near the head of Rogue River Valley, sometime previous to the above occurrence, the exact time we have not been able to learn, for the purpose of robbing--they were surprised by the return of the occupant before they had completed their work, who fired on them and wounded one of their number. A man by the name of Nobles, formerly a resident of this county, has been arrested on suspicion of being concerned in the robbery, and was to have had his examination on last Tuesday. A report that Nobles had been arrested on a charge of being concerned in the murder of Lane, and rescued from the jail, and hung, is incorrect, inasmuch as he was in custody at the time the deed was committed.
Daily Alta California, San Francisco, May 21, 1857, page 1
By the Goliah we have the Crescent City Herald, of the 20th, and the Humboldt Times, of the 23rd, one week later than were previously received.
MURDER NEAR JACKSONVILLE.--The Herald says that an old gentleman named Lane, living six or eight miles from Jacksonville, was murdered a few days since, by having his head split open with an axe. He was supposed to have ten or twelve thousand dollars in money in the house, which was doubtless the cause of the murder, but we cannot learn that the villains obtained the money.
"Later from the North," Daily Alta California, San Francisco, May 25, 1857, page 2
At Jacksonville, May 7th, Mr. Geo. N. Lydston and Miss Lucy A. McCowin, both of Jacksonville.
Daily Globe, San Francisco, May 29, 1857, page 2
ROAD TO SOUTHERN OREGON.--It is in contemplation to from Jacksonville, Oregon, to Oregon City during the present summer.
Sacramento Daily Union, June 6, 1857, page 2
An election for delegates to a convention to frame a constitution for the state of Oregon was held in Oregon Territory on the first Monday in this month. From the Oregon papers it appears that regular Democratic tickets for delegates were nominated in all the counties. In some instances independent Democratic tickets were offered; in others, regular opposition candidates have been put forward. A large majority of the delegates will, of course, belong to the Democratic Party.
The Sentinel, of May 30th, published at Jacksonville, in Southern Oregon, contains a short report of a discussion held a week previous in Jacksonville, in which the candidates for delegates to the convention participated. The questions discussed in the canvass, we suppose, are named in the report as they were touched upon by the speakers.
The regular Democratic candidates from the county of Jackson for the convention were L. J. C. Duncan, John H. Reed, Daniel Newcomb and P. P. Prim. Several independent Democratic candidates were also announced. The public speaking followed an adjournment of the District Court, and was commenced by Judge Deady, who was a candidate for delegate from the county of Douglas. The topics discussed may be gathered from the following report of the Sentinel:
"The Judge approved of the decision of the Supreme Court in the Dred Scott case, endorses the principles of the Kansas and Nebraska bill, and offered the best arguments in favor of slavery we have heard. He said he should vote for slavery in Oregon, and assumed the position that all legislative action to prevent free negroes from immigrating and settling in non-slaveholding states have proved to be a dead letter on the statute book. Said he, 'Let those who hope to prohibit free colored immigration to Oregon examine the past, and they will be satisfied of the impossibility to carry out such a law, and that if we are compelled to have the colored race amongst us, they should be slaves.'
"His argument in favor of the viva voce system of voting is the true Democratic doctrine. His position in relation to salaries was about right. Fair salaries, so as to command the best talent, or make the office sufficiently honorable to command the talent without any salary at all. The latter is a matter that we are not prepared to judge of, but there may be something in it--still, it has always appeared to us that the more honorable the office, the greater the pay was."
Upon the views expressed by Judge Deady, the Sentinel remarks:
"If elected, and he continues to advocate the principles he declared himself in favor of on Saturday, he will make an excellent delegate, as we believe the views and doctrines expressed by him is the doctrine that a majority of the people advocate in Southern Oregon."
In expressing the opinion that the sentiments of Judge Deady were those of the people of Southern Oregon, the Sentinel must have labored under a mistake, as the speakers who followed declared their opposition to the institution of slavery. Messrs. Prim, Reed and Duncan, Democratic candidates for delegates from Jackson, avowed their opposition to the introduction of slavery into the state, and so did Mr. Brown, a Democratic candidate for Representative from that county.
It looks strangely to us to see a man advocating openly the introduction of slavery into Oregon. We had supposed it difficult to find an intelligent man anywhere who would advocate the introduction and establishment of the institution of slavery into a country where it did not exist, and where the climate and the productions of the soil do not invite slave labor. Slavery could not exist in Oregon for any length of time, if established and protected by the Constitution and the laws. Capital seeks investment in slaves, because their labor and increase are valuable. Destroy the value of the labor of the slave--let the time arrive when to clothe, feed and pay doctor's bills will cost, annually, more than the negro can earn, and their owners would soon seek an opportunity to rid themselves of their slaves. But where the annual labor of a negro man will bring from two to three hundred dollars per annum over his expenses, slavery, as an institution, will be popular, and there capital will seek slaves as an investment. This is the case in the states where cotton, sugar and rice are cultivated to perfection. To such states slavery naturally tends, and in those states it will thrive and grow. Slavery obeys the universal laws which control and direct capital, and interest on that capital. It will flourish where it can be rendered profitable; it will perish wherever it is found unprofitable, and whenever it is found to create ruinous rivalry between slave labor and that of the free white man. In Oregon it could not be rendered profitable, and the labor of the slave (the rich man's capital) would operate oppressively upon the labor of the free white man. These two reasons of themselves (to say nothing of climate) would crucify slavery in ten years, were it successfully introduced into Oregon.
In a few days we shall be in the possession of the result of the election.
Sacramento Daily Union, June 12, 1857, page 2
For the Oregonian.
Mails in Southern Oregon.
Dayton, June 3, 1857.Mr. Editor--Sir: Allow me briefly to reply to your correspondent of May 19th, over the "two daggers," who writes with gall and hails from the delectable mudhole of Laurel. It is plain he would have you and your readers believe that the mail service was and is neglected by the contractor in Southern Oregon. In a cowardly manner he intimated that there has been no arrivals of the mail at Jacksonville between December and the 13th of May. "Two daggers" knows that horseback service, once in two weeks, is all that we are employed to perform. "Two daggers" knows that we would perform weekly, daily or hourly service, if employed and paid for the same. "Two daggers" knows that at the commencement of the Indian war, our mail carrier and "cayuse horses" were repeatedly fired at and driven back. "Two daggers" knows that we were fined $72 because we failed to get through. "Two daggers" knows that we failed on another trip during the war, on account of high water and Indian blockade. "Two daggers" knows that we were fined $100 for that failure. "Two daggers" knows that since that time we have made but one failure, and that was on account of high water last winter, and for this we were discounted $50. "Two daggers" knows that on the schedule, time and corrections are made regularly at the termini, and that no mail matter is over left, that is, put into the mail bags. "Two daggers" knows that we have had as many as four mules on that route, three of which have gone under--one was stolen in Rogue River Valley, and packed to death by a far better man than "two daggers." "Two daggers" knows that if the people south of the Canyon will complain in the right direction, and in the proper manner, that they will be heard, and quite likely their grievances may be redressed. Now, if "Two daggers" don't know all these things, he knows nothing at all about the matter, and should reserve his bile to regulate his own puny system.
We will now tell Mr. "Two daggers" something of the encouragement held out to the department to induce an increase of mail facilities by postmasters and others in Rogue River Valley. In the first place there has not been one single dime of the money due the department from the office at Jacksonville paid to our order since the 31st December, 1855. In the second place, there has not been anything paid to the department from any office on that route, between Grave Creek and Ashland Mills, since the above-named time. Let the people of Rogue River Valley ask the Postmaster General to order weekly service on Route No. 12721; likewise to have a route established between Crescent City and Jacksonville. We have used our best endeavors for both these, but we have failed. We have no doubt if those more immediately interested would, in place of growling about the blood of the horse on which the mail is packed, demand as American citizens those rights to which as American citizens they are justly entitled, they will not fail. Yours,
JOHN M. FORREST,Weekly Oregonian, Portland, June 13, 1857, page 2
Contractor of Route No. 12721.
FURTHER FROM OREGON.--We are placed in possession of the subjoined items from that portion of Oregon bordering near Yreka, by the Jacksonville (O.T.) Sentinel, of the 6th inst.:
On the Sunday previous the house of Messrs. Miller & Gregor, at Phoenix Mills, was struck by lightning--setting fire to the lining--which was soon extinguished by the assistance of the neighbors. Several individuals were in the house at the time, but received no injury, only a slight shock of the nerves.
The same paper states that on Friday evening, the 29th ult., just about dark, Eli Judd, who was charged with perjury in the examining court in the case of the Territory vs. Noble, broke jail, and on the 23rd ult., George Livingston, sentenced to four years' hard labor in the Penitentiary, broke jail and escaped.
About 12 o'clock on the night of the 29th ult., the citizens of Jacksonville were aroused by the cry of "murder." On repairing to the place whence the cry proceeded, it was found that a gambler who had arrived the same evening, from Yreka, had lost a sum of money at play and refused to pay, and the fraternity present had organized a vigilance committee to mete out justice to the offender. After giving him a severe pummeling, they searched him, found the money in his boot, and after taking the amount they claimed, discharged him.
The Sentinel says that Jacksonville is becoming quite a resort for gamblers since the passage of the stringent law in California.
Sacramento Daily Union, June 15, 1857, page 1
At Jacksonville, Oregon, June 8th, of bilious fever, G. L. T'Vault, only son of W. G. T'Vault.
In Jacksonville, Oregon, April 16th, Mrs. Martha, wife of F. G. Condrey.
Sacramento Daily Union, June 15, 1857, page 2
We learn from the Jacksonville Sentinel that H. H. Brown, the newly elected member to the Legislature from Jackson County, killed a Chinaman on the 8th inst. by kicking him. Brown was supervisor on the road, and whilst working the roads, he had some altercation with "John," a very lean and diseased Chinaman, during which he "supposed" the man was in the act of drawing a knife, and gave him a kick in the side which resulted in his death in about twenty minutes. The Sentinel says the evidence given on the examination of Brown before Esq. Hoffman went to show that the homicide was accidental, and that death ensued as a consequence of a diseased heart and lungs.
Oregon Argus, Oregon City, June 27, 1857, page 2
OREGON CONVICT RETAKEN.--On Wednesday, June 17th, Sheriff Fair, of Siskiyou County, arrived in Jacksonville, O.T., having in charge Livingston, an escaped convict, who had been sentenced to five years' confinement in the Penitentiary, and escaped the day after his sentence. Livingston was taken six miles from Yreka, where he had been employed as a wood chopper.
Sacramento Daily Union,June 30, 1857, page 2
At the residence of his parents, in Jacksonville, on Sunday, the 7th day of June, George Lycurgus, only son of W. G. and R. T'Vault, aged 18 years.
Oregon Statesman, Salem, June 30, 1857, page 3
COMING TO CALIFORNIA TO GET RID OF TAXES.--We like to see immigration into our state from any quarter, but we apprehend those who come here with property only to avoid taxation will be slightly disappointed. The following we publish from the Jacksonville (O.T.) Sentinel, of the 20th June:
"At the present time, and for three months, the road has been crowded with bands of cattle and horses, owned by farmers leaving Oregon and going to California. Upon inquiring where are you going? Answer, 'To California, where the taxes are low.' 'Why, says one, 'I had to pay ten cents on the one hundred dollars last year, and that is higher than I can stand. And besides that, they intend to form a state government, which will increase the taxes.' In Jackson County the people pay a higher tax than in any other county in the Territory. The tax last year was only fourteen cents on the one hundred dollars."
Sacramento Daily Union, July 1, 1857, page 3
PRISONERS ESCAPED.--Two prisoners confined in the jail at Jacksonville, Oregon, escaped on Saturday night, June 27th, in the absence of the keeper. Their names are Goddard and Marshall. They were the only occupants of the establishment.
----HOUSE AND STABLE BURNED.--The dwelling house and stable of Thomas Norman, seven miles from Jacksonville, Oregon, were destroyed by fire on Thursday, June 28th; loss about six hundred dollars.
Sacramento Daily Union, July 10, 1857, page 2
Gen. McCarver, the late Democratic Commissary General, has returned from a visit to the Atlantic States. We are informed that this valiant General stopped at Crescent City for the purpose of making a tour through Southern Oregon, with a view of purchasing war scrip. It does not look well, to say the least of it, to see a man who has put into circulation several hundred thousand dollars in scrip turn round and purchase it at mere nominal rates. Had Gen. Wool said the "party" in place of the "people" were trying to rob the general government, he would have uttered a truth at plain as the sun at noonday. But of this hereafter.
Weekly Oregonian, Portland, July 11, 1857, page 2
EMIGRATION FROM OREGON TO CALIFORNIA, ETC.--The Portland Times is in receipt of a letter from Jacksonville, which says that the road via that place to California for months has been gorged with bands of cattle on their way south; that the cry is "still they come," until already over a thousand head have been driven past Jacksonville; that recently many of the drovers have taken the precaution to hold up and graze their stock in that valley and on the Rogue River Reserve, until they can satisfy themselves of the prospect of supplies below. The correspondent states that notwithstanding this vast drainage of stock from our valleys, the subtraction is hardly perceptible; that the crops in Rogue River Valley will be unusually light; that the miners have been, and yet are, doing a very profitable business all through that valley; that Brown, who by a kick killed the Chinaman, was acquitted; that Owens was arrested in Yerba, and that the murderers of old man Lane have not been discovered. He further says that they are erecting a new jail in Jacksonville, and thinks such an institution very much needed.
Daily Globe, San Francisco, July 13, 1857, page 2
A SINGULAR MISTAKE.--The following incident we find in the Yreka Union, of July 16th. It appears that if a rogue is once caught, there is not much difficulty in applying to him a crime:
A man named Marshall was brought in town yesterday, from Jacksonville, in charge of the Sheriff of Josephine County, Oregon. It appears the prisoner had been arrested by Sheriff Hendershot, of Josephine County, on a charge of horse stealing. Shortly after--the Sheriff apprehending much danger of an attempt on the part of the populace to take the prisoner and hang him--conveyed him to Jacksonville for safekeeping. While there he learned that a large reward had been offered in California for one Butler, and from the description given, supposing the prisoner to be the same, concluded to convey him to Yreka. This Marshall is the same who is charged with stealing a gold watch and some money from a cabin between this and Hawkinsville about a year since.
Sacramento Daily Union, July 20, 1857, page 3
SHOOTING.--On Monday, July 6th, two sportsmen, named Charles Crow and John S. Duvall, had a shooting affair near Jacksonville, Oregon, in which five or six shots were exchanged without damage. On the following Monday, Deputy Sheriff Anderson was shot in the face with a shotgun, by a man named Greene Mathews, who was drunk. The injury was slight.
Sacramento Daily Union, August 1, 1857, page 2
INDIAN DIFFICULTY IN OREGON.--The Jacksonville Sentinel, of July 25th, furnishes the following incident:
"On Wednesday, Wesley Jenkins arrived from Galice Creek, and informed us that the Indians had again commenced depredations in that vicinity, and had robbed a miner's cabin on the right fork of Galice Creek, taking provisions, cooking utensils and blankets, and that on Monday last, about three miles below Galice Creek, six Indians entered a miner's cabin where Wesley Walker was asleep. When he awoke, one Indian had obtained a gun that was standing in the cabin, and had it pointed at him, but the gun snapped without firing. Walker jumped up and drew his pistol, and the Indians fled, firing two arrows, without any injury. Walker fired, but does not know whether he hit the Indians or not. Walker immediately went to Galice Creek, and when Mr. Jenkins left, Mr. Bushey was raising a company to follow the Indians."
Sacramento Daily Union, August 1, 1857, page 4
In Jacksonville, Oregon, July 22nd, Mr. Alexander Martin to Miss Elvira M. Gass.
Daily Alta California, San Francisco, August 11, 1857, page 2, also Sacramento Daily Union, August 1, 1857, page 2
The initial number of the Jacksonville Herald is before us. It is published weekly by Burns & Beggs, and is Democratic in politics.
The following items are culled from its columns:
Messrs. Greathouse & Slicer, of Yreka, contemplate establishing a stage line from Jacksonville to Illinois Valley. It is their intention to run stages regularly on this route, until the completion, next April, of the wagon road from Crescent City to Illinois Valley, when they will occupy the entire road.
Thoman's theatrical troupe, with Miss Kate Gray and Julia Pelby, have visited Jacksonville.
A number of settlers have lately gone on to Cañon, Althouse, Sucker and other creeks in Lower Oregon. Mining thereabouts is good.
The infant son of Mr. Southworth, of Corvallis, was drowned a few days ago by falling into a spring near his father's house.
Daily Alta California, San Francisco, August 11, 1857, page 1
SURVEYS OF DONATION CLAIMS IN OREGON.--The Surveyor General of Oregon has transmitted to the General Land Office eleven plats of surveys of the claims situated in the southern portion of Oregon, upon Gold River, a tributary of Rogue River, and the vicinity of Jacksonville.
The business of the General Land Office in Oregon, by the by, is progressing most satisfactorily, we hear, which goes to show that the Surveyor General out there, Mr. John O. Zeiber, is a man of much energy and business capacity.
Evening Star, Washington, D.C., August 18, 1857, page 2 The Territorial Legislature attempted to change the name of the Rogue River to "Gold River" in 1854. It was not a tributary.
United States Dist. Clerk for Jackson Co.
Office--in Jacksonville, O.T.
August 19, 1854.
Oregon Weekly Times, Portland, November 28, 1857, page 4; NARA Series M234 Letters Received by the Office of Indian Affairs 1824-81, Reel 611 Oregon Superintendency, 1858-1857, frame 83.
JACKSONVILLE.--The foregoing town, in Oregon Territory, near the California line, is said to be improving. Several new brick buildings have been erected this summer.
Sacramento Daily Union, August 21, 1857, page 2
In Jacksonville, O.T., on the 18th inst., by Thos. Arundell, J.P., Wm. Griffin to Miss Mary, daughter of James Hamlin.
Sacramento Daily Union, August 21, 1857, page 2
TROUBLE WITH THE INDIANS IN OREGON.--We find the following in the Jacksonville Sentinel, of August 15th:
"We learn that a portion of Old John's band and the Shastas have left the Yamhill Reserve. It is said that they stole all the Klickitats' horses, and left for parts unknown. It is thought, however, that they have come south, as they have been heard to declare that they would yet have revenge on the whites in Rogue River Valley. A house was robbed in Umpqua Valley recently. The proprietor of the house was absent, and arrived home in the night, before they had completed their work. They had carried almost everything outside, when they were surprised by his return. They made off with a gun or two and a lot of ammunition.
"We would not willingly raise a false alarm, but we have our information from a source which seems reliable. The report is in a measure confirmed by the few Indians seen and the signs of much larger parties on Galice Creek and lower Rogue River. It will be well for persons in exposed localities to be on their guard. It is said that these Indians have procured considerable quantities of ammunition from the regulars on the Reserve, and they no doubt have plenty of arms cached in their old range, for it is well known that they did not deliver up all their arms when they surrendered. It is to be hoped that we will not again be troubled with the presence of our old red foes, but they may yet make us much difficulty."
Sacramento Daily Union, August 21, 1857, page 3
We have received the first and second numbers of the Jacksonville Herald, a new paper published at Jacksonville by Barnes & Beggs. It is of good size, neatly printed, and furnished at $5 per annum. It is Democratic in politics, and on the slavery question professes not to favor its introduction into Oregon, but is going to let the people decide it, like the Statesman, its godfather. But on the whole, we don't think it very dangerous--the earth will move on, and the stars shine hereafter, just the same as they have since the "comic" struck us.
Weekly Oregonian, Portland, August 22, 1857, page 2
STAGING.--The Yreka Union says a new stage line is now in operation from Jacksonville to Crescent City, a portion of the distance being mule travel, of which Charley Slicer is the agent. Lytle & Masterson have connected themselves with the California Stage Company, and will run daily between Yreka and Shasta, via Scott Valley, Callahan's and Trinity River trail. Since the death of our respected citizen, Robt. Cranston, Jas. Long, Esq., of Shasta, has become associated with Mr. Sulloway in the Pioneer line over the new Sacramento River route to Shasta.
Daily Democrat State Journal, Sacramento, August 24, 1857, page 3
LETTERS FROM OREGON.
The Trip--The Columbia and Willamette Rivers--Portland and its Environs--Oregon City and its Gray-Haired Patriarch--Facilities for Travel in the Interior--French Prairie and its Inhabitants--Salem and the Seat of Government--Oregon Politics and Politicians--The Constitutional Convention--Position of its Leading Members upon the "Nigger Question"--the Class Who Desire Slavery--Probable Features of the State Constitution--How Oregon Is Governed--A Contrast--General Prosperity of the Country--
News Items, &c. &c.
Salem, O.T., Monday evening, Aug. 7.Editors Union:--The traveler who leaves the wharves of San Francisco for the Columbia River country, with Bryant's ideal of a country,
"Where rolls the Oregon,is certain to have his conceptions dissipated on arriving in the Oregon of today. The Columbia, though retaining much of the savage grandeur in which it was clothed by the Divine Architect, is no longer the solitary haunt of the savage man and the savage beast, but is enlivened with the busy "hum" of ocean and river steamers, and the "whirr" of the many lumbering and grist mills with which its banks are studded. What a busy materialistic set we of the Anglo-Saxon race are. In what a short period of history have we belted the continent with the evidences of our enterprise, and carried the ensigns of our civilization to where the last land to be subdued by our arms look out upon the wide waste of waters that separate us from the cradle of humanity. What shall we do for other continents when this is ours? But these are questions which the reader may ponder upon and answer for himself.
And hears no sound but its own dashing,"
Not only the banks of the Columbia, but the sea coast from San Francisco has its active and busy population. The smoke of their fires was gracefully visible as we coasted the bays and headlands from San Francisco to Astoria. At Crescent City we discharged one hundred and sixty tons of freight. Crescent City is the entrepot of a flourishing trade with Jacksonville and Yreka, and the extensive mining country adjacent. This accounts for the vast quantity of goods unshipped there, which the Captain told us is seldom less than the amount this time. In about seven hours after leaving Crescent City, we passed Port Orford. A few years ago it used to be a place of considerable trade, but the recent Indian war in Southern Oregon has driven most of the miners from the country. They are, however, returning and prospecting the Rogue River country with good success, and the country promises, at no distant day, to fill up with a hardy and enterprising mining population. We never pass Port Orford without calling to mind some particularly wild passages in Byron's "Corsair." There is a wild, romantic look about the ragged, bare white cliffs upon which the town stands, which causes it involuntarily to associate itself in our mind with the retreat of the Greek pirates. Far be it from us, however, to intimate that the gallant Captain Tichenor (the Lord of Port Orford) pursues the calling of the robbers of Islam. The Captain is a gallant old fellow, and in his little craft, the Nelly Tichenor, has, no doubt, had quite as many adventures, and as exciting, too, as the father of Haidée.
Sometime since the federal government appointed a Collector of Customs for Port Orford without consulting the Captain, at which he was greatly displeased. Since then he has been employed in taking his revenge out of Uncle Sam's capacious pockets. His knowledge of the coast--which is perfect--enables him to monopolize the coast-carrying trade of supplying the Indians on the various reserves scattered along the coast. In his little schooner he enters bays on the coast with perfect safety, which would prove the destruction of less experienced navigators.
About a hundred miles from the mouth of the Columbia it receives the waters of the beautiful Willamette by two mouths, and fourteen miles from the mouth of the Willamette stands the youthful and picturesque city of Portland--the commercial capital of Oregon. Portland contains about five thousand inhabitants, and the town has more the appearance of substantiality than any other town on the Pacific. Here you find no dirty, dilapidated, deserted houses, tenantless and likely to continue so, but neat white cottages greet you on every hand--the permanent homes of the mechanics, who have made Portland what it is. Nearly every one of these mechanics are the owners of their own houses and lots, and the evidences of their ownership are to be seen in the trim, neat appearance of their dwellings, and the well-cultivated fruit gardens with which they are surrounded. Ten years ago the site of Portland was an unbroken forest, so dense as to shut out the sun's rays. Today it has its churches and its schoolhouses, its newspapers, its public buildings and its waterworks in full proportion to its needs. It has three weekly newspapers and one job printing office, and will be a good opening for the establishment of a daily as soon as the mail facilities of the country are a little improved. Among the many handsome private residences in Portland we cannot help mentioning that of Hon. T. J. Dryer, editor of the Oregonian. He started the paper in 1850, as a Whig journal, and notwithstanding the Territory has been largely and overwhelmingly Democratic, under his skillful guidance the Oregonian has attained an influence and a circulation far ahead of any other journal in Oregon. May its enterprising publisher have cause to "laugh and grow fat" for many years to come.
We left Portland in the steamer Express, and steamed up the Willamette twelve miles to Oregon City. The town has the appearance of premature decay--indeed, an old resident told us that he feared "the rats would soon take the town." It is situated in a deep cañon, where the whole body of the Willamette River, as large here as is the Sacramento at your city, rushes over a perpendicular ledge of rocks some forty feet high, reminding one forcibly of a miniature Niagara. There is water power enough here to whirl the planet Jupiter, if it could only be applied. There are several flouring and lumber mills established here, the largest of which is owned by Dr. McLoughlin, a gray-haired veteran of ninety years, who has passed the greater portion of his life on this coast, in the capacity of governor of the Pacific branch of the Hudson's Bay Company. He is now at the point of death. He married an Indian woman, and raised a family of half-breed children, whom he sent to Europe to be educated. He has managed, by giving the female portion of them large fortunes, to provide most of them with white husbands. The male portion, notwithstanding their opportunities, are Indian enough still. The doctor is said to be worth half a million of pounds sterling, most of which is invested in English stocks. He was a kind and humane man, and it speaks volumes for his goodness that the Indians and whites lived amicably together for the quarter of a century of his administration.
From Oregon City to Salem, the seat of government, a distance of about forty miles, there is no navigation on the river at this season of the year. Semi-occasionally stages run to carry the mails. We did not happen to strike the stage, and had to take passage in an apple cart returning to the interior for a load of that delicious fruit, after having deposited one for the San Francisco markets at the head of steamboat navigation. This gave us a better chance to see sights. The agricultural country begins a few miles above Oregon City. It is harvest time, and we can see the golden, waving grain in all its beautiful undulations. But human hopes and expectations are born to be disappointed.
A few hours' ride brought us to the "French Prairie"--the garden of Oregon. The crops are not near so abundant, nor the breadth sown so large as in former years. The inhabitants of this prairie are mostly French, and Indian half-breeds, their descendants with Indian women. They were formerly in the employ of the "Hudson's Bay Co." as voyageurs and trappers, having come across the continent from Canada. On the decline of the fur hunting trade, and before the Americans acquired the country, they settled this portion (the best) of the Willamette Valley. They are a very inferior race, naturally indolent and addicted to bad whiskey--in fact, they are little removed from the Indians on the Reserve, and should be sent there. The Americans are fast getting their lands away from them by one means and another, and putting it to better uses than it has ever been put to before.
To the south of French Prairie, in the same county (Marion), is Salem, the seat of Territorial government. It is inconsiderable in point of numbers (not having more than a couple of hundred inhabitants), but territorially omnipotent in point of political power. It is to Oregon what Rome is to Christendom--the point from which emanate mandates that are felt to the outward rim of its jurisdiction. Woe betide the unfortunate wight, having political aspirations, who dares to set up his will in opposition to the silliest whim of the "Salem Clique." He is politically dead.
The result of this political despotism in a country where there are but two pursuits--farming and office-hunting--may be easily imagined. To a naturally independent mind, it is a condition of things little better than the "knout." It makes cowards of men of genius, and prostitutes talent to the mean uses of little men, who have no talent of their own. In Oregon, this despotism is felt with double force, for here are none of the thousand channels through which men ambitious of distinction may gain eminence, aside from the dirty, thorny path of politics. There are but two occupations in Oregon--farming and politics. The "Salem Clique," having "Jo. Lane" at their finger ends, control Oregon's share of the federal patronage; hence, whoever is too independently constituted to pay court to the little great men of the clique, who sit chafing in their chairs, impatient of their daily dose of honeyed phrases, has to choose the plow and spade, or leave the country, as many talented and useful men have been obliged to do already from the same cause. The recipients of the pap, however, do not always have a pleasant time of it, for they are constantly annoyed by the growl of those who stand ready to jump in and snatch a mouthful of the spoils. In this respect, Oregon politicians might fitly be compared to a caravan of wild animals, in the midst of which was thrown a few pounds of flesh, each scrambling for the prize--the unsuccessful on the backs of the successful, trying to snatch the bone.
The constitutional convention assembled today at the courthouse in this place (the Statehouse was set on fire and burned down by local jealousy two years ago), and organized by making choice of the following officers:
President--M. P. Deady, of Douglas County.
Secretary--Chester N. Terry, of Marion County.
Assistant Secretary--Dr. Barkwell, of Jackson County.
It is impossible to say, at this stage, how long its deliberations will last--some say a month, others two months--but it is all conjecture. The principal men in the convention, and those who will control and shape its labors, are--Hon. Delazon Smith (of John Tyler lost minister notoriety), a man of uncommon debating powers. He is withal clear-headed, practical and well fitted for the position. He is individually favorable to a free state constitution for Oregon. He is prominent--I might say the most prominent candidate for first member of Congress from Oregon under the state organization. Next, I think, in the order of ability, is Hon. T. J. Dryer, editor of the Oregonian newspaper. He is a good debater, and will make his mark in the convention. He is an out-and-out free state man. George H. Williams, formerly of Iowa, but since 1852 Chief Justice of this Territory "by the fear of God and the favor of Franklin Pierce"--is a good constitutional lawyer, has the interests of Oregon at heart, and will, no doubt, strive to make her a good, wise and liberal constitution. He is for a free state. Judges Deady and Olney Williams, associates, are also members of the convention. Deady is a Marylander by birth and education, and, of course, is in favor of the "peculiar institution." He is the only man of mark in the convention in favor of a slavery constitution for Oregon. But it matters little what the opinions of members of the convention are upon the subject of slave or free state constitution; the people demand that the question be submitted to themselves for adjudication, and it will be done. A schedule will be added to the constitution making Oregon both a slave and a free state. Both propositions will be voted upon by the people next October, and whichever carries will thereby become incorporated as a part of the constitution. To my mind the result is not doubtful. Oregon will decide largely in favor of a free state.
There is but one class of men who desire slavery in Oregon--the class who have had the least experience of it in the States. Those who know it best are its most determined opponents here. The men who desire its introduction into Oregon are limited to the comparatively few who owned perhaps one or two negroes in Missouri, or some other slave state, and who, having come to Oregon at an early day, got their section of land under the donation law. They are generally too lazy to cultivate their own lands, and will not sell out at a reasonable price to those who would. They think from their limited experience that it would be a fine thing to have "niggers" to raise wheat, that they might be able to pay freights and compete with your farmers in the California markets. Those who came later to Oregon and got only 160 or 320 acres of land, generally speaking, do not desire slavery--and they are the most numerous class, as the ballot box will show. To this latter class may be added the numbers who look upon slavery as a moral leprosy, to be avoided at any sacrifice. I find there is much less fear entertained of Oregon becoming a slave state within her borders than without.
The state constitution, as far as I am able to judge at present, will be more like the constitution of some of the western states (perhaps that of Iowa) than of California. It will fix the salaries of state officers at a low figure. The Governor's salary will not exceed $2,000 per annum; that of the three judges, who shall be both Supreme and District Judges, will not exceed $2,500 per annum. The other officers in proportion. The judges will be elected, but I trust for a long term. I should regard it as a still better feature if their office were entirely beyond the control of the popular arena, and the political caucus. But this can hardly be expected from a convention largely Democratic--western Democracy--with very little of the spirit of conservatism in its composition. At present, Oregon is well enough governed, Uncle Sam paying most of her expenses, but she has got a notion into her head that it will facilitate the payment of her four-million war debt if she becomes a state. Her statesmen, ambitious of a seat in Congress, argue that the interest on this debt, if obtained only four years in advance of what it would be were they to remain in Territorial vassalage, would defray the expenses of her state government for years. I shall not pretend to gainsay it, but will it facilitate the payment by Uncle Sam of his debt? Echo answers, "Will it?" In any event, one thing is certain: Oregon will never permit herself to be plundered as do the people of California. Her population feel an interest in their country which your population, or the bulk of it, do not. They are mostly agriculturalists, who have come here in search of homes, carrying with them the virtues incident to an agricultural people. They have cast their lot here for themselves and their little ones, and that is a sufficient guarantee that they will act differently, and choose a different class of rulers from what your mining nomadic population do. Until the bulk of your population are permanent residents, you need look for very little change in the political condition of your state. She will only go on from bad to worse--pass from the hands of one set of hungry officials to another. Your public officers in point of morality are fully up to your people. The foundation is rotten, and where it is, the superstructure cannot be good. What else produces the difference in two states located side by side? Oregon is as well governed as any country may reasonably expect to be--her people are prosperous, there is little crime, and no pauperism within her borders--her schools are flourishing and well sustained--her taxation is a mere nothing. Nine mills on the dollar is the highest this year for all purposes, and contrast this with the condition of California, and how awful the picture? Your cities are literally swarming, seething with crime and beggary--your officers are corrupt--your people are ground down by taxation, and the country in every direction bears the marks of premature old age and decay. And all this comes of want of security for honest industry. Want of security for honest industry is the first, the second and the third great need of California. Unless your land titles are settled and some encouragement held out to a different class of population, California is beyond redemption. The gentle Goldsmith must have had some such condition of society as yours in view when he sang--
In a county so barren of excitement as this there are few items to report, but this is amply compensated for, I conceive, by the length of my rigmarole. The Democratic Standard, at Portland, it is said, has been sold out to James O'Meara, formerly of the Calaveras Chronicle, who is to conduct it (the Standard) as a pro-slavery organ. This will make the third organ and grinder of the sort in the Territory. I will keep you posted up as often as possible upon the doings of the convention.
P.J.M. [P. J. Malone]Sacramento Daily Union, August 27, 1857, page 3
Mr. Watkins moved a substitute [amendment] to the effect that if at any time the majority of the voters of Southern Oregon should desire it, that they might have the privilege of forming a new state in conjunction with a portion of the state of California.
The chairman decided the amendment out of order.
"Proceedings of the Constitutional Convention," Oregon Argus, Oregon City, August 29, 1857, page 2
WAGON ROAD IN THE NORTH.--The citizens of Jackson County, in the southern portion of Oregon, are about to open a wagon road from Jacksonville to Scotts Bar, in Siskiyou County. The distance--sixty miles--is about the same as to Yreka, and there is no mountain to cross on the line of the proposed road.
Sacramento Daily Union, August 29, 1857, page 2
THE WHEAT CROP IN SOUTHERN OREGON.--The Jacksonville Sentinel, of August 22nd, has been furnished with statistics by the Assessor of Jackson County, O.T., from which it draws the following conclusions:
"In 1856, the wheat crop of Jackson County was about one hundred and twenty-five thousand bushels. There was on hand of the crop of 1855, at the close of the harvest of 1856, about twenty thousand bushels of wheat and three hundred thousand pounds of flour. At the present time, there is not over ten thousand bushels of wheat, and but little flour of the crop of 1856--and the present wheat crop of 1857 will not exceed fifty thousand bushels. This, then, is important, and just what we have been telling the farmers. Do not sell your wheat and flour at low prices, for it will demand a higher price before wheat is produced."
Sacramento Daily Union, August 29, 1857, page 3
SUGAR CANE IN OREGON.--The Jacksonville Sentinel advocates the introduction of slavery into Oregon Territory, and as one of the grounds upon which this advocacy is based publishes the following item, in its issue of Aug. 22nd:
"We are informed that the Rev. D. Stearns has raised about two acres of the Chinese sugar cane, and that it was planted and grown upon the common prairie soil of this county, and has grown luxuriantly. He is preparing to manufacture the cane, and the impression is that he will obtain seven hundred gallons of syrup. We have not seen the Rev. Stearns, but have obtained the information from a reliable source. Seven hundred gallons of syrup to be produced from the sugar cane raised on two acres shows that the soil of Oregon will produce one article that the free state men admit slave labor can be profitably employed at. Now, the soil and climate of Oregon as an argument against slave labor in Oregon is all a humbug. It is a good soil and climate for everything in Oregon. The seven hundred gallons of syrup will sell for two dollars per gallon, at wholesale, yielding seven hundred dollars per acre. So much for the soil and climate of Oregon."
Sacramento Daily Union, August 31, 1857, page 1
Arrangements have been made for carrying the mails regularly between Jacksonville, O.T., and Kerbyville; also, for a triweekly mail to Crescent City.
The miners in the interior are reported to be doing very well generally, and particularly on Althouse. There are said to be from three to four hundred miners on that stream, almost all of whom are meeting with decided success. Sucker Creek is reported to have a mining population of about four hundred, three-fourths of whom are Chinese. The other creeks in that vicinity, Canyon, Josephine and Illinois are, as usual, paying good wages.
"Crescent City," Daily Alta California, San Francisco, September 2, 1857, page 1
By the arrival yesterday of the steamer Goliah we have the Crescent City Herald of the 26th, and Humboldt Times to the 29th.
THE NORTHERN MINES.--A party had arrived at Crescent City from Yreka, via Jacksonville and Kerbyville, in thirteen and a half hours, including stoppages. The miners are reported to be doing very well generally, and particularly so on Althouse. There is said to be from three to four hundred miners on that stream, almost all of whom are meeting with a very decided success. Sucker Creek is reported to have a mining population of about four hundred, three-fourths of whom are Chinese. The other creeks in that vicinity--Canon, Josephine and Illinois--are paying good wages.
Parties are now taking pleasure trips from Jacksonville to Kerbyville in buggies.
"Later from the North," Daily Globe, San Francisco, September 2, 1857, page 3
SUDDEN DEATH.--A German named Henry Marris, who had gone from California to Jacksonville, Oregon, died very suddenly on Sunday, August 10th. He left a brother living at Grass Valley, Nevada County.
Red Bluff Beacon, September 2, 1857, page 4
BURGLAR ARRESTED.--The Shasta Courier states that on Friday, Sept. 4th, Deputy Sheriff Fallonsbee, in that place, arrested Noble, who escaped from the Jacksonville jail some months since, where he was imprisoned under the charge of housebreaking &c. He is now in the Shasta jail, where he will remain until communication has been had with the Oregon authorities.
Sacramento Daily Union, September 7, 1857, page 2
Indian Depredations in Southern Oregon.
A correspondent of the Oregonian, writing from Salem, under date of August 25th, gives further particulars of the Indian disturbances in Southern Oregon:
"We have just returned from a ten days' march, in pursuit of the Indians who attacked and robbed Walker & Co.'s cabin on the 23rd ult., but have been unsuccessful in ferreting out the aggressors. We saw an abundance of fresh Indian signs, such as trails, deserted camps, etc., but were unable to get sight of the objects of our search. It is evident that there can be but little safety for either life or property in this region, so long as these Indians are allowed to roam at large, and the sooner they are captured and taken out of the country, the better will it be for all concerned, and the prospects of another general outbreak somewhat lessened.
"The citizens of Galice held a meeting a few days since, and petitioned the Governor to adopt some means by which the impending danger may be avoided, and this section of Oregon, for once, relieved of a pest which has so long infested it. With a little exertion on the part of our government officials, these Indians can no doubt be captured. Allow them to run at large, committing depredations upon citizens and serving as scouts and spies for their respective tribes on the reservations, and the chances, which are already numerous, for the resumption of Indian hostilities will be greatly enhanced. We are waiting anxiously to hear from the Governor, and to learn the fate of our petition.
"As our Indian affairs are again assuming a hostile aspect, it may be well for you to pursue the same course, respecting such matters, that you did in '55, so that the Oregonian may continue to be the medium through which the public may become advised of impending danger, and of the intervention of official dignitaries to avert it. It would not be in accordance with 'party usages' for the Governor to answer the prayer of the petition above referred to, nor is it at all likely that in this instance any deviation from the policy pursued in the management of the late war will be made. Another occasion is now offered for the re-promulgation of Gov. Curry's celebrated 'General Order No. 10.'"
A correspondent of the Statesman, writing from Deer Creek, Douglas County, says:
"This part of the Territory of Oregon has been and is infested by a lawless band of Indians ever since the last war, who go skulking through the mountains and cañons that lie adjacent to the settlements, frequently shooting cattle and horses, and robbing houses whenever a fair opportunity offers. About six weeks ago, Mr. Franklin Wright's house was robbed of a No. 1 rifle, one pound of powder, some percussion caps, two cwt. flour, two or three pairs of blanket &c., and on the 24th of July, Mr. Jas. Gilmore, a neighbor of Mr. Wright's living on the south fork of Deer Creek, about nine miles above Roseburg, unfortunately had one large American mare and two two-year-olds and one yearling colt shot. The shooting was done with arrows, as each of the colts were found having one sticking in them. The mare was found dead, the arrow having passed clear through the body. The colts were driven home, and the spikes of bone (which had been sharpened to a point) drawn from two of them, and it is supposed those two will recover."
Daily Alta California, San Francisco, September 10, 1857, page 1
ORGANIZED GANG OF ROBBERS ABOUT CRESCENT CITY.--The Crescent City Herald of 9th September, in commenting on the late murder and robbery, in broad daylight, of Max Rothenheim (a citizen of Crescent City), on the trail leading from that town to Illinois Valley, says there is now an organized gang of robbers and murderers who have their haunts in Northern California and Southern Oregon. These men have friends and agents everywhere--even in Crescent City itself. All parties going to that place from the interior who are known or supposed to have money with them are watched. The Herald recommends "short shrift and a sure cord" for the first rascal who is proved to be connected with this gang. A reward of $1,500 had been offered by the citizens of Crescent City for the arrest and conviction of the murderers of Rothenheim. Parties are out over the country, in pursuit of them. They are not yet exactly known, though several parties are suspected of having committed the deed.
San Francisco Bulletin, September 11, 1857, page 2
MURDER IN DEL NORTE COUNTY.--The Crescent City Herald gives the particulars of the murder of Max Rothenhem, a merchant of that place, on the 2nd September, on the road leading from Crescent City to Illinois Valley. It is suspected that a notorious character known as Bill Judd was one of the murderers. The deceased had been making collections in the interior, and it is presumed that he had a large amount of money on his person. A Mr. Lewis lost $700, which he had given to Rothenhem to carry for him. The Herald, commenting on the above, says:
"That an organized band of robbers and murderers now have their haunts in Northern California and Southern Oregon we have no doubt. That these men have friends and agents everywhere--aye, even in this city--we have as little doubt. That all parties coming to this place from the interior who are known or supposed to have money with them are watched, there can be no doubt."
Sacramento Daily Union, September 14, 1857, page 1
In Jackson County, Oregon, Aug. 18th, Wm. Griffin to Mary Hamlin.
In Jacksonville, Oregon, July 26th, L. J. C. Duncan to Mrs. Permelia Thompson.
In Jackson County, Oregon, Aug. 5th, Davis Evans to Mrs. Mary M. Brown.
In Kerbyville, July 23rd, David Sexton to Mrs. Caroline Niday.
Sacramento Daily Union, September 14, 1857, page 2
LETTER FROM LOWER OREGON--No. 2.
SIXES RIVER GOLD DIGGINGS--MOUNTAIN CLIMBING--GROUSE SHOOTING--THE NEWPORT COAL MINE AT COOS BAY, ETC.
Newport Coal Mine, Coos Bay,I closed my last letter, if my memory serves me right, in the midst of an Oregon forest, among the abundance of its fruits and its denizens. I stated in that that the messenger by whom I proposed to forward it to Port Orford was just leaving, therefore the cause of my abrupt ending. I go back then to the Sixes River gold diggings, to take up the thread of my former letter, and to give you some idea of mining &c. in Oregon. This mining locality is situated on the Sixes River, so called, and with the exception of the general features of the country round about, it reminded me of the river diggings in California in the ancient days of '49, '50 and '51. To judge, however, from the complaints of miners and others, with whom I conversed, I should say that the average earnings of individuals were light, but I am satisfied from my own observation, and from my experience (limited to be sure) in mining in California, years ago, that the miners there have not gone to work as they should in order to fairly develop the gold. The whole operations, at present, are confined to the riverbed, the water having been taken out by a flume connecting for a mile or more in extent and the claim pumped by means of undershot water wheels. The banks cannot be worked except after the 15th of October, according to a mining law of the place, and those who have claims there remain idle until that time. The extent of an individual claim is one hundred feet front on the river, running back two hundred feet. I submit, therefore, to old experienced miners in California, the question of how fairly digging can be developed when claims are so large as these, and consequently can be worked by but a few individuals. And I am of the opinion that five hundred California miners turned loose into this mountain cañon would rattle out the gold that now lies hidden in its bowels in a manner truly astonishing to those who are now working there under discouraging circumstances. I do not pretend to say that it is a locality for "big strikes," but I am confident the gold is there in a sufficient abundance to pay well, if industriously and properly sought after.
O.T., August 24, 1857.
The policy pursued by the first occupants of these mines has succeeded, as might well have been expected, in driving away very many who came here in the early opening of the excitement to take up and work claims. And I believe that that line of policy is peculiar to Oregonians.
The immense extent of the mining claims, to which I have already referred, placed the possession of the whole country, up and down the river, in the hands of a few individuals, who could not in one season, by any possibility, begin to develop the extent of its richness had they labored with might and main for every day, which, with a majority of those whom I have met, I should consider to be a moral impossibility. Consequently, very many were obliged to leave these selfish individuals, so like the "dog in the manger," to the full enjoyment of their possessions. And now these miners are, many of them, leaving, considering that their claims are worked out. In too many instances, the game of "poker" has worked them down financially to such an extent that the rich lead of the Alisons would not enable them to keep up a continuation of their mode of life in "these diggings." When and where they will find another clime more congenial to their tastes in life is a problem I am unable to solve.
But that there is a fine field here for systematic mining there cannot be a doubt in the mind of any man who has ever visited the mining regions of California. The hydraulic process will undoubtedly be introduced in another season, provided men of enterprise and experience are permitted to locate here, and then will gold digging in Southern Oregon be shown to be of the very first importance.
Four miles up the mountain! Did you ever go four miles up a mountain, with a heavy rifle on your shoulder, and all the etceteras? It is no doubt well calculated to develop the pectorals, but I cannot say I admire it.
But this mountain climbing has its charms as well as drawbacks, and it well behooves everyone to make the most of them. The scenery is grandly beautiful, and the lover of shooting need not weary of the road for a lack of game. The pinnated grouse inhabits these mountains in abundance, and, so far, I have done my part in smiting them hip and thigh, and regaling my inner man upon their savory properties. Our party has feasted upon grouse, elk and deer, since leaving Port Orford, until it has ceased to be a rarity.
Two days' ride through the forests and along the sea beach hath brought me to the spot of my present writing. And here, in these wilds, to see what American enterprise has developed, is well calculated to be a source of pride to every lover of the American character. The Newport coal mine, so called, is situated about six miles above Empire City, on Coos Bay, and is already in a stage of development that places the character of the coal, and the quantity that lies buried in these mountains, beyond doubt or question. The main drift of the mine is driven in already about four hundred feet, with large side drifts or chambers starting out on either side, at regular intervals, to enable the mine to be worked to advantage. The discoverers of this mine, Messrs. Rogers, Flanagan & Co., have built an immense house for a receptacle for the coal, capable of holding nearly 2,000 tons, at the mouth of the mine, and have also constructed a railroad, nearly a mile in length, to navigable water. The houses about the mine, the railway and other improvements, nestled down in this mountain gorge, with the lofty pines rising on either side up the steep declivities, give the whole scene an air of picturesqueness and beauty that one could scarcely expect to find in a new region like this. At present, coal mining is suspended here, owing to the depressed condition of the market in San Francisco. About a mile below this place is the coal claim of Messrs. Northrup & Simonds, where the proprietors are at present engaged in sinking a shaft in the expectation of striking a new deposit. Without doubt, in these mountains there is coal enough to supply the wants of the American Pacific Coast for ages to come. As I journey on, I shall, from time to time, let you hear of my meanderings, and the country by the wayside. Meantime, I am,
Yours, in the pine woods,Daily Alta California, San Francisco, September 14, 1857, page 1
FROM THE SOUTH.--The editor of the Sentinel has been on a visit to Josephine County, and notes great improvement in Kerbyville, the county seat, which, he says, at no distant day will be one of the most flourishing towns in Southern Oregon. It is beautifully located in the center of the most extensive and most successful mining districts. The mines on Sucker, Althouse, Canyon, Josephine and Briggs' creeks are yielding well.
The Sentinel is informed that the contractors on the Crescent City road have commenced work in earnest, and there can no longer be any doubt of its completion. The road will add more to the importance of Southern Oregon than any enterprise heretofore undertaken.
Oregon Argus, Oregon City, September 19, 1857, page 2
MARRIED.At Jacksonville, Aug. 27th, by Rev. Mr. Gray, Mr. Charles Williams to Mrs. Ann Angel.
Oregon Argus, Oregon City, September 19, 1857, page 3
In Jacksonville, Oregon, Aug. 28th, Charles Williams to Mrs. Ann Angel.
Sacramento Daily Union, September 25, 1857, page 3
POPULATION AND TAXABLE PROPERTY OF JACKSON COUNTY, O.T.--The following table, taken from the census roll of the Assessor of Jackson County, O.T., will show the population of that county at the present time:
The Herald, however, thinks the report inaccurate as to population, and estimates the number of inhabitants at 2,000.
Sacramento Daily Union, September 26, 1857, page 2
TRAVEL AND TRANSPORTATION NORTH.--A tri-weekly line of stage communication has recently been established between Yreka and Crescent City, and efforts are being made to effect a regular connection with the mail steamers from San Francisco, by which passengers can make the trip from Yreka to the latter city, in two and a half days.
With the completion of improvements now in progress upon the inland portion of the route, and the establishment of a line of steamers with regular connections, the Yreka Union thinks it reasonable to suppose that nearly all the merchandise destined for that county, as well as Southern Oregon, will be landed at Crescent City, and transported thence in wagons over the new route; thus, by a great reduction in distance, and by relief from expensive transportation on the Sacramento River, enabling northern merchants to procure their goods at greatly reduced rates.
Sacramento Daily Union, September 30, 1857, page 2
LETTER FROM SOUTHERN OREGON.
MINING PROSPECTS--ROGUE RIVER--STAGES--NEW TOWNS--THE INDIANS.
Evansville, Jackson Co., O.T.This portion of our fast-growing country seems to have been overlooked by your numerous correspondents, and having some little feeling of pride from the rapidly increasing prosperity of Southern Oregon, I have ventured to address you with a few items that may be of interest to your readers.
September 19th, 1857.
To assure you that no selfish motive governs me in so doing, I will say that I am a miner and have no interest whatever in the improvements now going on, other than what benefits the hard-working industrious miner, by placing within his reach the means of social and intellectual enjoyment.
This county, as well as that of Josephine, has been the field from which many a prospector has gone home with his "pile," and yet many claims remain that will pay good wages for thousands more, who may hereafter come to work them. Besides the mining operations on Rogue River, and a great many wing dams have been put in this season, there are "Old Sam's," "Gall's" and "Sardine" creeks. The last, the one on which I have been located for six months, and therefore can speak more truthfully of the chances for newcomers, will accommodate several hundred more men than are at present at work. The prospects are good, and sufficient to warrant good pay, that is, three or four dollars a day. The others, I am told, prospect equally as well. Thus while the golden dust remains in bank from the want of the labor to get it out, your city ought not to complain of idle laborers seeking employment. Let them leave, come up to this section, and I assure them they can either take claims for themselves or hire out to those who may already have located.
A daily line of stages are now running from Jacksonville through this village to Illinois Valley, a distance of 68 miles, where it connects with a passenger train of animals for Crescent City. A tri-weekly line also runs from Jacksonville to Yreka, thus giving ample opportunity for all to get here who may desire it.
New towns are almost daily springing into existence, where but as yesterday there was but a solitary cabin. Kerbyville, in Illinois Valley, last fall was but a simple trading post, [and] is now a large and flourishing town. This village, named after Mr. Davis Evans, was located but about four weeks since, and at that time had but the farm cabin of Dr. Ambrose upon it, and now it can boast of a fine two-story hotel, a wholesale and retail grocery store, a lawyer and a doctor's office, a large and commodious stable, a blacksmith's shop, and a number of other private buildings. The liberal policy pursued by the proprietor, Mr. Evans, of bestowing a lot of ground, 30 by 70, to anyone who will build, has the effect of bringing enterprising men from all quarters, and will undoubtedly soon place Evansville second only to Jacksonville for a lively business town in Southern Oregon.
The streets are laid out at right angles, sixty feet wide, the main street running direct from the road to Jacksonville to the ferry known as "Evans' Ferry," placed across Rogue River, immediately north of the town. Heretofore, the miners and settlers of this section have been obliged to depend upon Jacksonville for their supplies. Now, everything is brought right to their door, at the same prices.
The well-known enterprising and business habits of Mr. Evans foretells the success of the town which now bears his name.
At present, everything seems to be quiet. During the summer, various rumors of the Indians being out have been in circulation, and caused all to keep a more strict watch of their property and of themselves than otherwise.
It is now so late in the season that little is to be feared from the Indians who are upon the reservation, and those that may be out are of such a peaceful nature that no trouble is anticipated.
Yours, respectfully,Daily Alta California, San Francisco, October 8, 1857, page 1
DEPARTURES FOR THE EAST.--The exodus from Yreka and vicinity, for the Atlantic States, is unusually large this fall. . . . Quite a number of persons from Rogue River Valley were also passengers on the steamer of the 5th. Among these the Jacksonville Herald mentions Dr. George Ambrose and Augustus Taylor, prominent citizens of the valley, with their families.
----FARMING IN ROGUE RIVER VALLEY.--A letter to the Jacksonville Sentinel says the potato crop of Rogue River Valley would astonish the people of California, twenty-five pounds to the hill being not far from the average crop.
----POSTAL.--A petition to the Postmaster General for the establishment of a daily mail between Yreka and Shasta is being signed in the former place. In reference to this project and the further extension of mail facilities northward, the Yreka Union remarks:
"We would also suggest to our neighbors in Southern Oregon that they are deeply interested in an increase of mail facilities between them and us. By next summer, Yreka will be in telegraphic communication with San Francisco, which will render a daily mail hence to the principal towns in Southern Oregon not only very desirable, but almost an imperious necessity, and they should bestir themselves in securing the continuation of a daily line into their midst."
Sacramento Daily Union, October 10, 1857, page 2
DR. J. R. CARDWELL, Dental Surgeon, Corvallis, in his profession, at Corvallis, Eugene City, Winchester, Scottsburg and Jacksonville. Skill, unquestionable; charges respectable; work, warranted. Teeth examined, and advice given free of charge.
Due notice given of change of office.
April 26, 1855.
Oregon Statesman, Salem, October 13, 1857, page 4
INTERIOR MAIL.--Kerby's mail to the interior seems to work well. Letters leaving here one morning reach Jacksonville the next evening. We do not know how long they are from there to Yreka, but, if a proper connection is made at Jacksonville, they should reach Yreka the second day after leaving here.--Crescent City Herald.
Daily Alta California, San Francisco, October 20, 1857, page 4
SAWMILL BURNED.--Lindley's sawmill, on Bear Creek, Rogue River Valley, says the Jacksonville Herald, was destroyed by fire on the night of the 7th last. The fire originated from someone employed in the mill knocking ashes out of his pipe, which, falling in the sawdust in the pit under the mill, set it on fire; it was not discovered until it had progressed too far to admit of being checked.
Red Bluff Beacon, October 21, 1857, page 2
ARRESTS.--The Yreka Union of Oct. 22nd mentions the arrest and committal to jail in that town of John Fulp, charged with stealing a valuable horse in Rogue River Valley lately, and who is also suspected of being concerned in the murder of Lane in the same valley last summer, and a man who goes by the name of "Whisky Bill," charged with stealing a revolver and about $180 in money, from Oliver H. Firestine, at Hawkinsville about two weeks since.
Sacramento Daily Union, October 26, 1857, page 2
GREAT PRODUCTS.--The Jacksonville (Oregon) Sentinel, of October 31st, acknowledges the receipt of twelve blue potatoes, weighing twenty-two pounds ten ounces, from Mr. Satterfield, proprietor of the Table Rock Ranch. Mr. S. planted eighty pounds of potatoes about the middle of April last, and though the tops were nearly destroyed by frost and hail, he has lately gathered from that planting six thousand six hundred pounds, or one hundred and ten bushels.
The same paper also mentions the receipt from Jacob Wagner's ranch, twelve miles from Jacksonville, of a blue potato, weighing six pounds and fourteen ounces, believed to be the largest ever raised in Oregon.
Sacramento Daily Union, November 6, 1857, page 2
UTAH.--Late advices represent that a large Mormon force under Brigham Young and Heber C. Kimball were to leave Salt Lake City, well supplied with provisions and ammunition, for a campaign eastward to cut off and destroy the United States troops in some of the narrow mountain passes, in some of which, it is said, ten men could cope successfully with one hundred and fifty soldiers. Many of the Indian tribes of Southern Oregon and Utah were secretly preparing to join the Mormon forces.
Raftsman's Journal, Clearfield, Pennsylvania, November 11, 1857, page 2
HIGHWAY ROBBERS CAUGHT.--The Jacksonville Herald, O.T., mentions the arrest of two noted characters, supposed to be Ridgely alias Emigrant, and Atwill alias Buckskin, also a third person, unknown, charged with committing highway robbery on a man named Combs, of Cow Creek, Douglas County. The robbers were observed skulking behind trees on the road to Galice Creek, and firing on Combs, the latter called on them to spare his life and take his money if that was what they wanted. They accordingly relieved him of a belt containing six hundred dollars, and decamped in the direction of the Cañon. Combs raised a party at Cow Creek and started in pursuit, nabbing the rascals at Preston's four miles the other side of the Cañon.
San Francisco Bulletin, November 16, 1857, page 3
ROBBERY ON ROGUE RIVER.--The Crescent City Herald, of Nov. 4th, alluding to a late robbery committed near Rogue River, says:
"It was committed on the trail from Galice Creek to Rogue River; the parties were arrested, but instead of being hung, they were brought to Kerbyville for a trial. One of them was the 'Emigrant,' another a fellow called 'Buckskin Bill,' and the name of the third we have been unable to learn. We hear further that the 'Emigrant' has made his escape, notwithstanding he was ironed and fastened to a log. They have no jail at Kerbyville. We thought at first that the news of his hanging was too good to be true, and hope when he is retaken the people will make short work of him."
Sacramento Daily Union, November 18, 1857, page 4
LATER FROM OREGON.
By the Jacksonville (O.T.) Sentinel of Nov. 14th, we have later advices from Oregon, and further details of the late election. The Sentinel says:
"From late advices, we are almost certain that the constitution is approved by a handsome majority. Marion, Linn, Polk and Clackamas counties will give at least fifteen hundred majority in favor of the constitution, and not more than three or four counties in the Territory will give majorities against it, and those majorities will be small. There was but little excitement in Northern Oregon on the slavery question."
The Sentinel has also the following in relation to the vote in Douglas County, which was set down as strong for slavery, and in Josephine:
"The returns had not been received from all the precincts in this county up to the time we went to press. We felt no doubt about receiving the official returns in time for this issue, and therefore kept no notes of the outside reports from the several precincts. There is, no doubt, a small majority for the constitution, about the same majority in favor of slavery, and almost a unanimous vote against free negroes. The partial returns from Josephine indicate that that county has given large majorities for the constitution and against slavery."
JOSEPHINE.--We are indebted to a friend for the following returns:
CANYON CREEK PRECINCT.
Sacramento Daily Union, November 20, 1857, page 2
UNHAPPY MISTAKE--A MAN SHOT FOR A BEAR.--On 3rd of November, two persons named John Mathews and Wootson Tucker left Rogue River Valley together for the mountains, to set a steel trap for the purpose of trying to catch a bear. After a time the two separated, one going to the right, the other to the left. By some means Tucker got on the opposite side of Mathews. When the latter was crossing the flat, he discovered something some distance off, and when he got within a hundred and fifty yards of it he thought it was a bear. He saw it move, and feeling confident it was a bear, he fired. Unhappily, the object he took for bruin was Tucker, his companion. The ball entered Tucker's right side, and caused death in about ten hours afterwards. It appeared that Tucker had killed a deer, and was stooping down making a hook to drag the carcass to the bear trap. He was dressed in dark-colored clothes, and was close to a bench of brush that stood between him and Mathews, and prevented the latter from discovering his mistake until he shot. Before his death, Tucker exonerated Mathews of all blame. The deceased was from Iowa, Decatur County. A card is published in the Jacksonville (O.T.) Sentinel, signed by a number of residents of Rogue River Valley, in which they express their belief that Tucker was accidentally shot, and relate the circumstances of the affair substantially as above stated.
San Francisco Bulletin, November 21, 1857, page 3
We are indebted to Mr. J. K. Applegate, who arrived here this week from Josephine County, Southern Oregon, for many interesting items of news concerning that region of country, the publication of which we are obliged to defer until another time. Mr. A. informs us that the miners in the vicinity of Rogue River--what are of them--some 150 in number, are making better average wages than at any time heretofore. New diggings have been discovered on Galice Creek, about fifty miles westerly from Jacksonville, at which $6 per day is taken out with all ease.
Pioneer and Democrat, Olympia, Washington, November 27, 1857, page 3
We learn that the sheriff of Josephine Co., on his way to this city with three sentenced prisoners, on Tuesday, at Salem, was forced to shoot one of them in attempting to make his escape. The shot proved fatal.
Oregon Weekly Times, Portland, November 28, 1857, page 2; NARA Series M234 Letters Received by the Office of Indian Affairs 1824-81, Reel 611 Oregon Superintendency, 1858-1857, frame 78.
The Jacksonville Sentinel, printed five days after the election, has no returns in from Jackson County. It thinks, however, there is a small majority for the constitution and for slavery.
The two precincts in Josephine County sum up as follows: for con. 107, against 32--for slavery 43, against 96.
Oregon Argus, Oregon City, November 28, 1857, page 2
OREGON ELECTION.--The Jacksonville Sentinel of Nov. 21st, gives the official vote of Jackson and Josephine counties:
Jackson County: Constitution, yes, 465; no, 372. Slavery, yes, 405, no, 426. Free negroes, yes, 46, no, 756. Majority against the constitution, 7. Majority against slavery, 21. Majority against free negroes, 710.
Josephine County: Constitution, yes, 445; no, 139. Slavery, yes, 155, no, 435. Free negroes, yes, 41, no, 534. Majority for constitution, 306. Majority against slavery, 280. Majority against free negroes, 493.
Sacramento Daily Union, December 3, 1857, page 2 Yes, these numbers don't add up.
ESCAPED FROM JACKSONVILLE JAIL.--John W. Fulp, who was charged with horse stealing in Wasco County, Oregon, escaped from the jail in Jacksonville, November 14th. He succeeded in wresting one of the grating bars from the window, with which he broke the lock on the door, and made his escape unobserved. He has not been since heard from.
Sacramento Daily Union, December 3, 1857, page 2
FURTHER RETURNS FROM OREGON.--The Crescent City Herald has returns of the election from a few precincts in Southern Oregon. That paper says the vote in Jackson and Josephine foots up as follows: Jackson, 20 majority for the constitution; 100 majority for slavery, and almost a unanimous vote against free negroes. Josephine is almost entirely against free negroes, and as far as heard from gives 146 for the constitution, and 47 against it; 164 for slavery, and 305 against it. Information from Coos Bay says that the vote on slavery there was 19 for and 72 against; and at the Umpqua precinct, the vote was 1 for slavery and 42 against it.
San Joaquin Republican, Stockton, California, December 5, 1857, page 1
ADOPTION OF THE OREGON CONSTITUTION.
The Portland Times, of Saturday, Nov. 21st, says:
The constitution is adopted by a vote of between four and five thousand--the free state question by upwards of three thousand, and the anti-negro immigration by an even greater majority.
The Times has official returns from Multnomah, Washington, Marion and Linn counties, which, in the aggregate, foot up as follows:
Thus, it will be seen, every county in the Territory (aside from local considerations) ardently desires to make Oregon the thirty-second star in the American constellation. Every county in Oregon (with the exception of Jackson, perhaps) declares overwhelmingly in favor of a free state, as our Oregon correspondent some time ago predicted, and against the admission of free negroes. The Oregon papers have no doubt that the small counties yet to be heard from officially will follow in the wake of the large and populous counties already heard from, and will add to, rather than diminish, the indicated result. The Territorial (or State) Democratic Central Committee have called a meeting of that body, to be held at Salem on the 19th inst., preparatory, we presume, to the nomination of state officers, Congressmen, and two U.S. Senators, early in the spring. The Statesman recommends the holding of the state convention at an early day, that candidates may have full time to canvass the state previous to the popular election, which comes off in June. The Legislature, for the election of U.S. Senators, meets (per provision of the constitution) also in June. The Oregonian doubts whether the new state will be admitted into the Union, with the present constitution--at least under the Buchanan Administration.
Sacramento Daily Union, December 7, 1857, page 2
In Jacksonville, Jackson County, O.T., Nov. 28th, Ellis W. Dorncut to Lucinda Newhouse.
Sacramento Daily Union, December 21, 1857, page 2
THE KLAMATH LAKE INDIANS.--The people of Jacksonville, Oregon, are preparing to open a feather trade with these Indians, and the latter have been advised to save their feathers, fowls being quite plenty in their vicinity.
Sacramento Daily Union, December 21, 1857, page 4
MORE ROBBING AT JACKSONVILLE (O.T.).--J. Mendenhall, who resides on Illinois River, was on a visit to this place the other day and informed us that two men, one bearing the cognomen of "Arkansaw," robbed a number of Chinamen on Canyon Creek one day last week, taking specimens of gold and jewelry to the amount of one or two hundred dollars. The miners turned out in pursuit of the robbers, but the rascals evaded their pursuers, and the next night robbed two Chinese camps in the neighborhood of Sailor Diggings, taking blankets and pistols. At last accounts men were in pursuit of the robbers in the direction of Klamath River and Crescent City. It is to be hope they will succeed in arresting the villains, as there cannot be any doubt that there is an organized band of robbers who have their headquarters in that section of country.--Jacksonville Sentinel, Dec. 5th.
Sacramento Daily Union, December 22, 1857, page 4
The bill to incorporate the Siskiyou wagon road company was read a second time, and on motion of Mr. Drain was referred to committee on roads and highways.
"Territorial Legislature," Weekly Oregonian, Portland, December 26, 1857, page 1
THE WAY THE MONEY GOES.--There is now at the Auditor's Office, in Washington, D.C., a box, some three feet square, containing vouchers of accounts allowed by the Commission on the Rogue River (Oregon) War claims to the amount of six millions of dollars. Some of the items consist of hay at two hundred dollars per ton.
Daily Dispatch, Richmond, Virginia, December 23, 1857, page 1
Last revised December 17, 2018