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The Infamous Black Bird Southern Oregon History, Revised


Clean Up South Front!

Bracketed by the railroad and Whisky Row, Front Street was where it was happenin'.



    There was a fakir on the streets Monday. He procured a license from Recorder Webb to do street peddling and gave his name as Wm. Carter. Soon after the license had been procured he opened up for business near Hotel Nash, but his business was a nut proposition and a fake, and the recorder proceeded to call in the issued license, but not until some of our unsuspecting people had been hornswoggled into the purchase of several of the nuts.
"News of the City," Medford Mail, August 23, 1895, page 5


    Capt. Nash ordinarily is not a gentleman who allows his wrath to get so far beyond him that it is not an easy matter to reach out and haul in sails, but when he appeared on the street Monday morning his wrath was waterlogged and would not respond to the rudder. He was just naturally hot, and there were grounds for this heated condition. He is the owner of a fine brick hotel and has recently had built a splendid cement walk about the building, and the captain prides himself in keeping things neat about his premises, and when he discovered, lined up against his nicely painted walls and new cement walk, a furrow, deep enough to plant sugar beets in, of old quids of tobacco, cigar stumps and thick molasses-colored expectorant, he was just riled "clean through and through." Just why people who feel they must use this vile weed have not enough of manhood left to respect and keep neat and clean things that are beautiful is past finding out--but without any exaggeration whatever that sidewalk was a disgusting sight Monday morning. An anti-spit law that would protect such places ought to be passed by our city council.
"A Grist of Local Haps and Mishaps," Medford Mail, April 30, 1897, page 7


    There was a lively runaway in Medford last Saturday forenoon. S. E. Enney was driving a team through the streets hitched to a light wagon and carrying a large banner, telling of the Gardner auction sale--also ringing a bell at intervals. When he was passing the Davis flouring mill one of the horses became frightened at the banner and began running. The other horse joined with him, and the two came flying up Front Street at a very swift pace, notwithstanding Mr. Enney's efforts to stop them. As they turned toward the depot at the Nash Hotel one of the horses struck its head and shoulder against a large telephone pole and fell to the ground. The other horse sped on across the street with the wagon when it became tangled with the harness and wagon pole and was caught. Mr. Enney was thrown from the wagon and landed fully thirty feet away, but fortunately, and miraculously, escaped with only a few bruises. The horse which struck the telephone pole died a couple of hours later. An examination disclosed the fact that its back was broken. With such force did it strike the pole, which is an unusually large one, that the twenty or more wires at the top of the pole were badly tangled, and some them were broken from their fastenings. The horses belonged to Mr. Gardner, and his loss is keenly felt as the animal was a good one and a fine driver. The wagon is something of a wreck, itself.
"City Happenings," Medford Mail, March 30, 1900, page 7


    The Adventists of Medford and surrounding country have leased one of the A. J. Stewart buildings, on South D Street, and have fitted the same up for chapel purposes. Rev. B. C. Tabor is their pastor, and the first services in the new location will be held at two o'clock tomorrow, Saturday. Regular services will be held thereafter.
"City Happenings," Medford Mail, October 5, 1900, page 7


    A young man by the name of Kinney "got gay" Tuesday and undertook to dictate the management of one of the saloons in this city. A blow from a beer keg mallet on his left temple sufficed to convince him that he wasn't the "whole show," his own opinion to the contrary notwithstanding. The sum total of the result of his undue presumption was quite an ugly gash on the temple, which required the aid of a surgeon to properly dress.

"City Happenings," Medford Mail, March 1, 1901, page 7


    Mrs. Loder, who owns property on Eighth Street, at the rear of J. R. Wilson's blacksmith shop, has decided to remove the building situated thereon and erect a residence, 30x36 feet in size, on land she owns at the [southeast] corner of D and Eighth streets.

"Additional Local," Medford Mail, June 7, 1901, page 6


    Mrs. Loder will commence the erection of her new residence next week. It will be located on the corner of D and Eighth streets, and will be 30x30 feet in size and two stories high. A. W. Bish will do the carpenter work.

"City Happenings," Medford Mail, July 19, 1901, page 7


    A one-legged man was in Medford last week soliciting money with which to purchase, as he stated, a cork leg. He told that he lived on Applegate, and if he could get means enough together he would purchase a cork leg and thereafter be self-supporting. He had a subscription paper signed by numerous people in Ashland and some in Medford, who had given him from fifty cents to $1 each, but he did not get far on his Medford round-up until our people were given conclusive evidence that he was a fraud and an impostor and he was asked to move on. C. C. Ragsdale, who is here from Williams, Calif., was the means of his undoing in Medford. He solicited Mr. Ragsdale for aid, but Mr. R. recognized in the cripple a person whom, only a few weeks ago in Williams, he had assisted to buy a leg, to the extent of a dollar, and he naturally made inquiry as to how many of those cork members he needed, but the cripple did not have time to explain at just then. Mr. Ragsdale notified the chief of police of the imposition and the one-legged fraud was made to vacate the city limits. Just how long he had been doing that sort of thing of course is not known, but it is quite evident he had worked his fraud all through California--and is probably working the Willamette Valley by this time. At the rate he gathered in the shekels at Ashland he ought to be good for from $10 to $15 a day.

"City Happenings," Medford Mail, August 23, 1901, page 7



    Mrs. Loder has her large new residence nearly completed. The structure is a credit to the part of town in which it stands and is a monument to the thrift of this honest and industrious widow lady.

"City Happenings," Medford Mail, September 20, 1901, page 7


    There were two big, lazy bears in the city Monday, and they were accompanied by two bigger and lazier dagoes. They gave performances on the streets, but the shekels they gathered in were but few. That they "wrestle wid de bar, de bar wrestle wid me; sometime I fro de bar, sometime de bar fro me" did not seem to be sufficient inducement to cause our citizens to loosen up on their coins.

"City Happenings," Medford Mail, December 27, 1901, page 7


Rooms to Rent.
    I have furnished and unfurnished rooms to rent. Suitable for light housekeeping, millinery or dressmaking. Near business center of city.
A. M. LODER.       
Medford Mail, January 10, 1902, page 6


    Frank Wilson:--"No, that isn't an automobile, that's a peanut roaster on wheels of the latest improved kind. It is made to be pushed around and roast peanuts at the same time. The people of Medford will soon have 'da peanuta' fresh roasted delivered at their own doors. The roasting is done by steam heat, and the machine is surely up to date."

"City Happenings," Medford Mail, February 14, 1902, page 7


Reckless Shooting.
    Wednesday afternoon, H. B. Myers, the jeweler, while under the influence of liquor, went to the hardware store of Beek & Son and secured a .38 caliber Colts revolver and some cartridges, telling the salesman, John Norris, he would try the weapon and if found as represented he would purchase it. Mr. Norris at the time had no idea he was under the influence of liquor and of course readily complied. It seems he went directly from there to the saloon of A. H. Helms on [South] Front Street, where he had a drink with some of the hangers on, of course standing treat. Among those in the place at the time were several "tinhorns" who soon proposed a game and got him into the back room for that purpose. The bartender would not let them have cards or chips to play, and Myers, it is said, gave a boy $2.00 to go out and get a deck of cards. While the boy was out after the cards Myers pulled out the gun, calling the attention of those present to its qualities and by way of emphasizing them started into shooting through the back door. Four shots were fired, two of them through the frame of the door and two through the glass. Two shots passed entirely through the water closet and crossed the alley in the rear of the saloon, leaving their imprint on the woodshed back of the book store.
    As soon as the shots were heard, Mr. Helms hurried to the saloon and rushed to the back room where he found them putting up a target on the wall to shoot at, which piece of business he immediately put a stop to. Soon after Myers left the saloon and repaired to the Turf Exchange, where he again created a disturbance and flourished his gun. Here, or in the immediate vicinity, he remained until supper time, although during that time he was disarmed by Chief of Police Amann. During the chief of police's absence at supper J. W. Fredenburg, his deputy, was left to watch for his appearance on the street and just before he returned from his supper Myers came out of the saloon and was immediately arrested by policeman Fredenburg and taken to the city jail, Chief of Police Amann arriving in time to assist in locking him up. Here he remained until 9 o'clock Thursday morning, when he was taken before Recorder York and given the nominal fine of $26.50, which he paid, and was discharged. As this is the second time in the past year he has been up before the city recorder for being drunk, disorderly and making a spectacular gun play, the recorder is open to just censure for not giving him the full fine the offense justifies, as well as in not making him give bonds to keep the peace.
    If the lives of the citizens of the community are to be put in jeopardy by every drunken man for the paltry sum of $26.50, we will no doubt have a veritable reign of terror in Medford, for it is well known the town is overrun with a worthless lot of "tinhorn" gamblers and depraved wretches, who live off the earnings of fallen women. And in speaking of this class, let us say they should be run out of town. There is no use for them in a decent community. They are an eyesore and a blot upon the city's fair name as well as tending to deprave many promising young men. It is said Myers was not alone in the shooting, that another did part of it, while it was also intimated he was "doped." But be that as it may it is a shame and a disgrace that it is possible for these things to occur.
    We are sorry to be compelled to speak so plainly of these matters. But when we see innocent boys and girls thrown into companionship daily with this "sporting fraternity" we think it is high time the community was aroused to the danger.
    Before long we shall prepare a list for publication of the sporting fraternity of Medford who are recognized in this county as "tinhorns," so the ignorant and innocent may profit thereby.
Medford Enquirer, March 8, 1902, page 4


    While resisting arrest by Special Policeman Eads on Sunday afternoon, Tobe Brous suffered a fracture of the right leg below the knee. There are several reports as to how and why the trouble came about. One of the reports is that Tobe and Dave Gibson were in conversation on D Street, in front of Helms' saloon, when Eads passed. Brous is said to have made a remark in effect that he was "living easy"--the rest of the sentence not having been supplied. Eads stepped in and said to him:--"You are my prisoner." Brous, it is said, demurred, asking the reason for his arrest, but the officer declined to enlighten him. Eads then tried to take his prisoner, but the latter caught hold of the bars across the window and the officer had to call help to get him loose. Eads then carried or dragged his prisoner to a point opposite the Nash sample rooms, where he struck his prisoner a blow in the face, knocking him partly through a window. He then jerked him back again, and the two fell upon the sidewalk, and in the mixup Brous' leg was broken. Another story is that Brous had been drinking and was making considerable noise; that he stepped out of Helms' saloon to the sidewalk, and that he was hallooing. Eads, it is said, stepped up to him and told him he must stop making so much noise, whereupon Brous became defiant and applied epithets which were not complimentary to the officer, and the arrest followed. Brous became more abusive and refused to accompany the officer quietly. He caught hold of the window bars, and the officer asked assistance from bystanders in getting him loose, which assistance was not given. Eads then caught Brous under the arms and was half pushing, half carrying him down [the] street, when Brous tripped the officer and both fell. When they arose Eads struck at Brous, but instead of hitting him, seized him by the shoulders and shoved him through the window, then pulled him out and both fell again. It was then that Brous announced that his leg was broken. Brous was taken to the Hotel Nash office and a physician was summoned. While waiting for the physician Brous, it is told, continued to abuse the officer. On the arrival of Drs. Jones and Shearer an examination was made and it was found that the leg was broken. Brous was at once taken to the residence of his brother-in-law, Dr. J. G. Goble, and the fracture was then reduced.
"City Happenings," Medford Mail, February 13, 1903, page 7


    Two rifles were stolen from the shooting gallery, owned by Mr. Daily, in a tent near the Office Saloon [on North Front], Friday night. A hole was cut in the tent, and a chest in which the rifles were stored for the night was broken open. Chief of Police Turpin instituted a search for the thieves and after some difficulty located them in Grants Pass, where they had disposed of the shooting irons. The guilty parties gave their names as Augusta Gungan and Harry Bakery. They are two young men from the East, who are evidently doing the hobo act and picking up whatever valuables they can find along the way. They were brought to the city and given a hearing before Justice of the Peace Stewart, pleaded guilty to the charge and were bound over to appear before the circuit court, the bonds being fixed at $200 each. Not being able to give bonds, the two young toughs were placed in the county jail at Jacksonville.

"City Happenings," Medford Mail, February 8, 1907, page 5


    When we stepped off the Pullman car at Medford [in 1908], we had only to cross the street in the mud in the rain to reach the old three-story Nash Hotel (now the Robinson building) with its flossy bar, the most attractive room in the hostelry. Seeing twenty-dollar gold pieces being tossed on the bar for drinks was a sight for a twelve-year-old boy to remember. Cowboys and other ranch hands, who received the current monthly wage of $30 per month with board and bunk, would tie their horses to the hitching rack in front and saunter into the hotel bar or one of several others in a two-block area on Front Street, known as "Saloon Row." Payday was the one night of the month for them to howl, and they would ride out of town the next day dead broke and with a hangover. Some of them went so far as to sell their horses and gear for as little as $25 for one more night in town. They would walk back to the ranch sadder but wiser after a gay weekend of drinking, dancing and getting acquainted with some of the girls in the brothels. Let it be said that it took the town officials ten more years to get around to the closing of those places of business in the white slave traffic. Medford appeared to us to be an up and coming town after our quiet, dying Wisconsin village. [pages 15-16]
    So many eastern college dropouts hit our town during the boom that even with double prices they kept the old Nash Hotel filled to capacity. These gay young blades would appear about noontime for a light breakfast and usually spent their afternoons leaning on the hotel bar getting oiled up for all sorts of hijinks at night. One of them drove a red Stutz Bearcat roadster, and a playmate drove a blue Mercer roadster. Luckily for these two young alcoholics, there was no suitable road for them to have a race. Just viewing these sports cars parked near the hotel made us drool with envy.
    "Peaches," the gorgeous, buxom, blonde cigar counter girl, and the two young women who were the Hotel Nash dining room orchestra, did right well by marrying sons of wealthy eastern parents, who were among the numerous playboys. Some of the parents, for reasons unknown, seemed to prefer sending monthly checks to their wild offspring to keep them well away from home. They were truly a devil-may-care group, these "young remittance men on the Rogue." In some cases the social-climbing parents had objected to the girl they left behind. [page 29]
George W. Vilas, Tales of a Rogue Valley Rogue, 1974


TALK POLITICS, THEN FIGHT.
Fistic Encounter Between a Socialist and a Democrat.
    The city coffer will undoubtedly be enriched to some extent Monday because of the fact that E. J. Lewis, state organizer for the Socialist Party, and attorney E. E. Kelly engaged in a fistic encounter on the Hotel Nash corner last night.
    Mr. Lewis was speaking from a box on the street corner and, as we are told, during his talk asked if there was an attorney in the crowd, to which Mr. Kelly made answer that he was one, whereupon Mr. Lewis hurled some caustic remarks in his direction, to which Mr. Kelly, who is a Democrat, took exceptions. After an exchange of compliments (?)  Mr. Lewis intimated that Mr. Kelly get on the box--and that is what Mr. Kelly proceeded to do. It was then that Mr. Kelly hurled a few full-strength caustic remarks in the direction of Mr. Lewis-and about this time the gentlemen commenced a mixup.
    Both were arrested by Officer Cole, and they gave bonds in the sum of $20 each for their appearance before Judge Collins tomorrow morning.
Excerpt, Medford Mail, October 23, 1908, page 2


    A dancing monkey performed some "monkey tricks." He was in charge of a foreigner who was ordered by Chief of Police Shearer to stay off the main street. It was a great treat for the children--and there were others.
"Local and Personal," Medford Mail, June 4, 1909, page 5


        The man named Dearbaum who was badly beaten for abusing his wife on Front Street a few nights ago by another man was fined the sum of $20 by Recorder Benjamin M. Collins this morning.

"Local and Personal," Medford Mail, July 2, 1909, page 2



Laboring Man Slugged and Robbed in Alley
A. Rankin Struck on Head with Blunt Instrument
Last Evening and Robbed of Hundred Dollar Roll.
KNOWS NOTHING OF THE MEN WHO ROBBED HIM

    A. Rankin, a laboring man, was relieved of $100 Friday night about 9:30 o'clock by someone who evidently slugged him from behind.
    Mr. Rankin states that he had started from the Nash corner down Front Street on his way to his room in the Palace, and that was the last he knew until he found himself in his room with his pocketbook and contents gone. Mr. Rankin does not know when he was assaulted nor how, but the side of his head shows that a heavy blow had been struck him with some blunt instrument. He was known to have money upon him, and he hasn't it now, and that is about all of the story that can be gathered at present.
    The frequency of this holdup game in this city is getting to be somewhat monotonous. The police force does its best to look out for these matters, but the force is so small that they are unable to cover all the ground and be in every part of town at once.
Medford Mail Tribune, November 6, 1909, page 1


CITY INSTITUTES BALL AND CHAIN
    The city has instituted a chain gang of one. William King, who wrecked a Front Street eating house Saturday night, was sentenced by Judge Eifert to serve 25 days on the streets wearing that cumbersome piece of jewelry known as a ball and chain.
    This mode of punishment for disorderly conduct is expected to have a salutary effect in the way of prevention of future misdemeanors of the kind.
Medford Mail Tribune, February 22, 1910, page 8



Canton Restaurant
SAM LOCK, Prop.
    The former famous chef at the Nash Grill, Mr. Sam Lock, has opened Canton Restaurant, above Kennedy's Saloon, No. 33 South Front Street. Entrance at both sides. Only first-class meals served, and just the name of the proprietor is the best guarantee.
OPEN EVERY DAY AND NIGHT.
NOODLES, CHOP SUEY.
This is the only place there will be served chop suey and China noodles. Come and see me and you and I are both sure you will come back. Remember, I am willing and I preach what I promise. Yours truly,
SAM LOCK.               
Advertisement, Medford Mail Tribune, April 10, 1910, page 16


    The saloon row along Front Street is an eyesore which will be more apparent when the various improvements contemplated by the Southern Pacific are completed. People going through on the trains will receive a bad impression of the town. This street is a poor advertisement for the city, and if some other location could be found for these places it would be an improvement very much to be desired.
"What Medford Needs . . . From Woman's Standpoint," Medford Mail Tribune, May 15, 1910, page B1


    CELEBRATION TOO PREVIOUS
Weary Willie John Doe Thought it Was the Glorious Fourth and Proceeded To Get Gloriously Full, and it Cost Him Five Plunks.
      John Doe was a boozer right.
          How did I guess it you say.
      He celebrated the Fourth o' July
          And 'twas only the middle of May.
    Weary Willie John Doe, after imbibing a great quantity of bug juice Wednesday evening, tore a few leaves from his calendar and started out to celebrate the glorious Fourth of July. Remembering that the proper way to open a celebration of Independence Day is to deliver an oration, he mounted a barrel near the Exhibit Building and started in. He was just working into his first climax when Chief Shearer came along and, despite John's declaration of independence, carted him off to the jug.
    John might not have been interfered with but his oration did not exactly fit into the spirit of a religious meeting being held on that corner at the same time. So he was led away.
    Justice Canon imposed a fine of $5.
Medford Mail Tribune, May 26, 1910, page 1


STABBED IN QUARREL AT CHOP HOUSE
Cutting Affray Nearly Terminates in Murder at Front Street Restaurant This Afternoon--
Lee Myers, One of Employees, Cut Across Left Side by Drunken Man.
    A cutting affray which nearly terminated in a murder occurred at the English Chop House on Front Street shortly after noon today. In consequence Lee Myers, one of the employees, lies in the Southern Oregon hospital with a nasty cut across his left side, and his assailant, a drunken man whose name has not been learned, is in the city jail booked on a charge of murderous assault. It is not thought that the young man will die, but he is in a serious condition.
    The assault upon Myers followed his ejection of the drunken man from the chop house. The man had been creating a rumpus, and Myers ordered him to leave. When he refused to do so, Myers put him out. He then re-entered the house, and when Myers started to put him out again drew a knife and cut him.
    Bystanders prevented him striking twice, and to this the young man probably owes his life.
    The police say the man is a stranger to them. Within fifteen minutes after he had been locked up he was fast asleep, and until he awakens it will be impossible to learn his name.
Medford Mail Tribune, June 1, 1910, page 1


PULLED RAZOR IN FIGHT, IS ARRESTED
    M. E. Dorn and John Burns "mixed it" at the Nash corner Thursday about 1 o'clock, with what would have been disastrous consequences to Dorn had it not been for the interference of bystanders, and manager Burke of the Natatorium, who is a special policeman.
    Dorn, Burns and others of the construction gang came to town Wednesday evening, and Dorn became persona non grata to the rest and was beaten up a bit.
    At the time of the fracas he approached Burns and then reached toward his inside pocket. Burns stated he thought it was a gun he had and decided to "beat him to it." He leaped at the smaller man, chased him across the walk and into the arms of Burke, who took from Dorn's hand a razor, still in its case, however.
    Mayor Eifert fined Dorn $10 and gave him half that many minutes to leave town. Burns was released, as he put up a pretty good show of self-defense. The razor was added to the chief's collection, which is assuming formidable size.
    From words let drop in the bickerings back and forth between the men, the trouble is of long standing, even dating back to the mining troubles in the Rocky Mountain district several years ago, which resulted in tragedies all over the Northwest.
Medford Mail Tribune weekly, August 25, 1910, page 3



A popcorn wagon on South Front Street in front of the Nash Hotel, May1909.

RUNAWAY STRIKES PEANUT WAGON
E. L. CLARK COMES NEAR CROSSING THE JORDAN
Enclosed in Canvas Windbreak and Is Nearly Blind--
Kempthorne's Interview Prophetic
    It was almost prophetic with Sam Kempthorne the other day when he got interviewed by The Sun and stated that he would not have his popcorn wagon again to stop runaways at the corner of Main and Front streets for a million dollars, for quite early yesterday forenoon such a runaway occurred and the popcorn and peanut wagon of E. L. Clark was near the dead center of it. Mr. Clark, however, is still alive, but he only escaped death by the width of a hair. The team of Ben Minard was standing beside a freight car some 300 feet south of the old depot and the driver was in the car, in the act of carrying out a shipment of trees and loading them on the wagon. The team had run away before and knows the game very well. Glancing back, the horses saw that no one was on the wagon and then started. They cut into Front Street, where four or five bundles of trees and some boxes were spilled and the hind bolster broken. The team then turned toward the depot building and encountered a guy wire to a high pole and snapped it and some two-by-sixes fastened to it in two. That swung the horses a little more to the right than they were heading and that saved Mr. Clark, for otherwise they would have run directly over him and his outfit. As it was, his wagon was struck a glancing blow and then dragged and jostled about by the side of the harness and wagon. Mr. Clark has a canvas enclosure to keep the wind off him, and he and his enclosure were sent sprawling into the street. He is old and nearly blind, which added to his peril. His wagon was damaged only slightly.
    On Main Street just north of the depot the horses were caught, a bystander first grabbing the nigh one and Officer Hinton landing the off one which was the more fractious.
    The trees were unharmed. They were a portion of a large shipment for H. B. Patterson, of the Quaker Nursery.
Medford Sun, December 20, 1910, page 1


ACTING CHIEF OF POLICE ORR
LOSES HIS STAR AND GUN
Taken from Him While Asleep by Policeman Snyder
and Deposited at Nash Hotel Office--How It Happened
    Acting Chief of Police Frank Orr was shorn of his regalia, official trappings and sidearms last night shortly after 10 o'clock. The acting chief did not resist nor offer physical objection to the procedure. He was not robbed of his or the city's property, as superficial readers might imagine from scanning these lines, but the same were taken by one of his subordinates, Policeman Harry Snyder. The reason Orr offered no resistance was that he was sound asleep in the back part of a local saloon and was wholly oblivious of what was going on. A crowd of a score or more of men were present, among them a member of The Sun's staff, but the acting chief slept on.
    The regalia, trappings and sidearms consisted in the main of his star and gun. They were taken away by Snyder and deposited in the office of the Hotel Nash, to be turned over this morning by Mayor Canon with a probable rehearsal of the facts and circumstances.
    The Sun sought an interview with Snyder, but he declined to talk. After the excitement it got Officer Harry Cingcade over the phone, but he stated that he had nothing to say to the newspapers. The saloon men along the row were equally reticent.
    While no actual sounding was taken of the acting chief's breath to ascertain his condition of sobriety by those who saw the transactions, there were whisperings that could be heard a rod away that he was dead drunk. It was stated, indeed, that he had not drawn a sober breath for the evening, and when a call was sent in for the acting chief he did not find it out. He did not unload the schooners at any time in particular, but seems to have started out that way, well "teed up," as it were, when he went on duty for the day. Meanwhile the Nash Livery Stable for a time had to be used as an improvised bastille, as the acting chief carried, or "conveyed," or had possession of the only keys to the city jail. It so happened that a gentleman of the name of W. Cannon--spelled the same as Uncle Joe's--had become inebriated and it was the determination of the members of the night force to lock him up somewhere. It is understood that Mr. Cannon will come up before Judge and Mayor Canon this morning for trial or dismissal, but whether it will be before the probable conference with the acting chief or the sessions being presided over by Land Commissioner Canon--who is also clerk of the federal court and notary public--is uncertain.
    The mayor was severely censured last evening for his appointment of the acting chief. The ground for such censure was that Orr was practically a stranger here, a new man and unacquainted. He had not become inured to the brands, and they got him. Had he been an oldtimer he could have stood up under it like a Trojan. It was not a fair test to a new man who did not know the brands.
    In one way, however, it is claimed that this circumstance is going to be a big political card for the mayor. It is predicted among the higher-ups of Front Street politics that Canon will remove Orr. Others stoutly deny it. But the ones predicting removal seem to have the best of the argument, and their ground for stating that it will be a big card for the mayor is that the people will give him credit for firing a man after he is thus publicly demonstrated to have been dead drunk. There, it is admitted, is where Orr made his mistake. He should have kept his feet, and had he only remained in the half-and-half condition he was in early in the evening and had not committed the error of falling asleep he would have continued to share in the political glory of the mayor until his star--not Orr's, but the mayor's star--reached its zenith.
    As it is, he has thrown the mayor down, and while it will only hasten the reaching of the zenith of the mayor's star it will probably separate Orr from his star for good. That all comes to the man, and deservedly so, who cannot carry the load that is thrust upon him.
    Today will tell the tale--whether or not Mr. Orr is to have his star and "cannon" restored and continue to share in the political fortunes of Mayor Canon, or whether he is to be informed by the mayor or councilman Wortman that his resignation will be receivable at this time.
Medford Sun, February 3, 1911, page 1


SECOND SATURDAY PERFORMANCE
"TEX" PREWER'S TEAM WRECKS POPCORN WAGON
Runs Away on Front Street, Twice Circling Depot--Driver's Daring Capture
    The team of "Tex" Prewer, which gave a spectacular performance a week ago Saturday in the form of a runaway on Central Avenue, repeated the performance yesterday afternoon in a much more spectacular fashion than on the previous occasion, with slightly more harm done.
    The team was standing by the curb on Front Street, opposite the Hotel Nash, and fastened with a weight as required by the city ordinance. Prewer was about twenty feet away, but when the horses started he was unable to get to the lines in the manner that he did last Saturday. The horses cut over the curb through the mud to the railway yards, making a circle back into Front Street and heading north. They swung in to where they started and with a wild lunge threw the peanut and popcorn wagon of E. L. Clark off in biplane fashion. It just happened that Mr. Clark was not in the wagon, but was a few feet away. The wagon was wrecked to the extent of having a wheel smashed and turning turtle, and popcorn was strewn over the pavement. The runaway tore on down Front and made two complete circles of the new depot at a gait and style that would have done credit in a Ben Hur chariot race. One of the hind wheels got caught in the railway track and collapsed as a result. This tended to slow down the team to some extent.
    Prewer is something of a sprinter himself, and the way he ran after the disappearing team resembled a deer. Just as the horses came back around the depot a second time he met them between the building and the railway track and he swung himself in front of them, managing to grab the harness, effecting a capture and bringing the frantic animals to a standstill. Prewer is a great horseman, and his prowess this time was seen even at a better advantage than in the daring exhibition of a week ago.
    The horses are a spirited pair of colts, the off one being a bay Hambletonian, and as stylish an animal as there is in Medford.
    This is the second experience of the kind in the past few months for Mr. Clark and his popcorn wagon. He is aged and cannot see well, which makes his vocation at the Main and Front Street corner all the more hazardous.
Medford Sun, February 5, 1911, page 5


Patronizing the "blots" on West Main, May 17, 1909.

Move on Foot to Move 'Blots'
     A movement is on foot among a number of prominent citizens who favor the organization of a civic improvement league here to petition the city council to clean Front Street and the more public portions of the city of the peanut and "hot dog" stands and express wagons which now decorate them.
    While no movement has as yet been made to circulate a petition, the frequency with which visitors to the city have sarcastically alluded to the hourly rope-throwing contests indulged in by the expressmen who station themselves in full view of one of the leading hotels has stirred business men to discussing seriously the formation of some means to transfer the "frontier day" exhibition to a more secluded spot.
    The tent-like structures on wheels, from which the "hamburger" vendors nightly distribute their wares, have also come in for their share of caustic comment, the more so now that recent changes in the lobby of the Nash Hotel permit of an uninterrupted view of those "dining out a la cart(e)."
    Tradition might have played some part in stalling off any hostile moves against the older institutions had not some person recently decorated a prominent Main Street corner with a structure on wheels which bears strong resemblance to a cross between a circus band wagon and a dining car. No effort has as yet been made to operate the movable "salle a manger," but the work of a sign painter already decorating the brilliant white sides proclaims that ere long a maximum quantity of delectables will be procurable within its walls for a minimum price.
Medford Mail Tribune, February 6, 1911, page 8
Licensed vendors were allowed to remain until the expiration of their licenses. See "Street Vendors to Remain," Medford Sun, June 29, 1911, page 1.


RUNAWAY TEAM CIRCLES THE DEPOT
    Frightened at the noise made by a passing concrete mixer, a team of spirited young horses attached to an express wagon belonging to J. S. Prewer ran away from their stand in front of the Nash Hotel, and, after making a wild dash up North Front Street to the Southern Pacific railroad station and circling that structure twice, were finally brought to a standstill on the depot platform by J. A. Overdorf, a driver for the Pantorium company.
    In their mad flight the team completely demolished a popcorn wagon owned by E. L. Clarke, which formerly stood at the corner of Main and Front streets.
    One of the rear wheels on the wagon to which the team was attached was broken off at the hub.
Medford Mail Tribune weekly, February 9, 1911, page 7


Orr Is Dropped from City Police
    Mayor W. H. Canon Friday relieved Frank Orr, a special officer holding a temporary appointment on the local police force, of his star and "tools." The dismissal was made as the result of allegations to the effect that Orr had been found asleep in an intoxicated condition in the rear room of the Bass & Hale Saloon on South Front Street at a late hour Thursday night.
    He was discovered by Officer Harry Snider who, failing in an attempt to wake him up, relieved him of his gun and star. Snider deposited the gun with the night clerk of the Nash Hotel and, taking the star to Mayor Canon's home, turned it over to him.
    Orr was called before the Mayor this morning and dismissed from the force.
    While he had never been given an appointment to the regular police force, Orr had under a special appointment been assigned to duty with members of the regular forces and was working the night patrol in company with Officer Snider when he met his Waterloo.
    Officer Snider last night called Officer Harry Cingcade, one of the day force, to finish our Orr's tour of duty and this morning Snider remained on duty with Day Officer W. B. Hall until relieved again by Cingcade.
    No appointment has been made in Orr's place but Officers Snider, Cingcade and Hall will divide the patrols until a fourth man is appointed.
Medford Mail Tribune weekly, February 9, 1911, page 3


TENNESSEE SMITH IS MISSING
Old War Horse Takes Fright at Newfangled Doings
in Nash Hotel and Runs Away
    Has anyone seen "Tennessee" Smith?
    The pioneer with the [facial] alfalfae is missing, and the last seen of him he shot out the door of the Nash Hotel on a dead run and has not been seen or heard of since. He probably is still going, and must have reached Galice by this time.
    For seventeen years past Tennessee Smith has been making his headquarters at the Nash. He nearly always sat on the east edge of the first window facing on the Main Street side, reclining in a position so that he could have a view of the avenue and the fullness thereof, for as long and grizzled as are Tennessee's whiskers, he still likes to size up the different styles of calico that go flitting by. He is particularly fond of the rustle of silks. He has weathered the weather during various managements of the hotel, from the time of "Shorty" Hamilton to "Doc" Reddy, but when Jack Sheridan came along with his newfangled ideas and threw out the wood seat chairs, buying a lot of leather-upholstered rockers from Cuthbert's, Tennessee appeared on the scenery and without at first noting the switch that had occurred, sat down in his usual place by the rubberneck window.
    Wow! The chair went back and the cushion seat was too much for old Tennessee. He gave a Comanche war whoop and lit for the door. The way he did go would make you think the Japanese army had arrived from Mexico.
    He has not been seen since. He is lost, strayed or stolen, and it is all because of Jack Sheridan and his newfangled ideas. Cuthbert's, too, are to blame.
    On this occasion a biography of Tennessee is in order. He was born down among the cotton fields a long time ago and never had a shave. He came to the Rogue River Valley so long ago that it was when Jess Houck was living at Ashland and that city was run wide open. Jess thinks it was 71 years ago or 17, he has forgotten just which. Anyway, it was before the referendum elections occurred there tri-weekly, and then some. Tennessee's only fault, now that his fate is in doubt, may be stated to be a fondness for Main Street scenery and too much Debs. In fact, Jess has changed his name from the good old euphonious word "Tennessee" to that shorter and homelier word "Debs."
    And he is a good fellow at that.
Medford Sun, March 30, 1911 page 6    "Tennessee" was likely William M. Smith, born February 1848 in Tennessee and in 1910 living on South Ivy.


REWARD IS CLAIMED FOR RUNAWAY
    "Tennessee" Smith, the missing pioneer, who made his getaway from the Nash Hotel on a dead run when cushion seats were installed, has been found, and yesterday the venerable sprinter was led into the Sun office by W. L. Halley, who stated that he was after the reward. Mr. Halley is a thrifty sort of a gentleman and stated that he needed the money, but was informed that the reward editor was not in at the time and to call later. The reward editor is very seldom in the office, but Mr. Halley, if persevering enough, will probably find him, when he will have to prove the identity of his find by competent witnesses and otherwise, in order to get the money. The amount of the reward, however, has not been stated.
Medford Sun, March 31, 1911, page 2



HOBOES ATTEMPT TO ROB DRUNKEN MAN
    Seven hoboes last evening attempted to rob an intoxicated man in the alley at the rear of the Bass and Hall saloon. The man gave an alarm and attracted the bartender. When he came the men went right on with their "rough stuff," at the same time bawling the bartender out. He sent in a police call and Officer W. B. Hall appeared in time to stop the men as they were about to make their getaway. He lined them up in front of the garage at South Central and Eighth Street; even then one of them making his escape.
    Hall marched them up Front Street to police headquarters and soon Officer Helm came to his rescue. The men will be run out of town this morning, so it is planned.
Medford Sun, April 26, 1911, page 1


BOB TELFER CAN GO SOME HIMSELF
    "Bob" Telfer, hero, is the way you can write it now, according to Chief of Police Hittson.
    It all came about in this manner. A gang of graders employed on the automobile road at Pumice Hill [on Crater Lake Highway] hove into town Wednesday and proceeded to celebrate among the denizens of Front Street. They became disorderly, and Chief Hittson, with a posse of brave men including Bob, was forced to round them up. In the mixup one of the graders spoke rather soothingly to "Bob," calling him some very pretty names, and "Bob," being bashful, resented them by landing a left hook to the jaw, sending his man down for the count.
    In the police court this morning Mayor Merrick fined the man $10 and costs but was forced to remit $5 upon finding out that the city recorder had already taken value received for the amount. Hero or otherwise, "Bob" is there with the goods, and it behooves all law-abiding citizens to keep away from him [sic].

Medford Mail Tribune, April 27, 1911, page 5



"POLICE! ROBBER!" MAN YELLS ON STREET
    A little excitement was created on Front Street last night by an excited individual who yelled "Police! Robber!" etc., at the top of his voice. Two members of the night force promptly responded, and upon inquiry it developed that said excited individual had been looking too often on the wine when it was red and imagined that he had been robbed of the sum of one dollar. Later he discovered the missing dollar, and peace was restored to the satisfaction of himself as well as those who had turned out in answer to the alarm.
Medford Sun, May 4, 1911, page 1


KNOCKED OUT AND ROBBED
JOHN F. BUCKLEY'S MEETING WITH STRANGERS
Starts for Lodging House with Them After Displaying Roll of Bills--
Left Lying on Street
    John P. Buckley, who arrived from Montague, California yesterday afternoon on the Portland express, proceeded to celebrate his arrival in Medford by inviting two chance acquaintances to have something. After spending the evening together in a jovial manner during which time Mr. Buckley carelessly exposed a roll of bills which fact his quondam friends noted, when the resorts were closed at 11:30 the trio started for a lodging house on South Front Street. Upon reaching the corner of Ninth Street one of the two agreeable gentlemen suddenly slugged the unsuspecting Buckley, knocking him to the pavement, and proceeded to relieve him of his wallet containing $185, tearing his clothing in their haste, and left him lying helpless in the street.
    Upon recovering from the assault he notified the police, and they are endeavoring to apprehend the highwaymen. One of the men is named Campbell, and the victim says he can identify them upon sight.
Medford Sun, May 7, 1911, page 1


PIONEER CANINE DIES BY CHLOROFORM
Oldest Dog in Southern Oregon--Had Remarkable History--
End Follows Paralysis of Spine
    "Pug," the oldest dog in southern Oregon, went to the happy hunting grounds Sunday. He was more familiar on the streets than most of the people of Medford, having been here while many a family came and went and others arrived to take their places. "Pug" was the property of B. S. Radcliff, of the Horseshoe Saloon, and he became so old and infirm in the past few years that he rarely ever ventured from his home on Front Street, a short distance south of the Hotel Nash.
    "Pug" was brought here twenty years ago from eastern Oregon by C. C. Ragsdale, then proprietor of the Nash, who bought the hotel from "Shorty" Hamilton. The dog then was four years old. He was a yellow pug in breed, and his chief accomplishment consisted in being a pet but a very wise one. He was particularly sociable with persons who had done him kindnesses, fed him dainty things, but he drew the line on beer, which he would not drink. Many persons have remarked that he had a beer look during his old age, as many saloon dogs have, but "Pug" never drank it. If you did him an injury he never forgot it. Some seven years ago some fellows in the Nash played a mean trick on him, and he never entered the hotel after that. He would not even walk on the sidewalk when he wished to go around into Main Street, but invariably took the middle of the street when passing the Nash.
    For quite awhile he had been showing signs of weakness of the spine, and Saturday night he had lost control of his hindquarters, probably by paralysis of the spine. As an act of humanity "Pug" was relieved of his misery by chloroform.
    It is a part of the local tradition that several years ago the sum of $25 was deposited in the Jackson County Bank to be used on the death of "Pug" to give him a decent burial. As his death occurred on Sunday while the bank was closed, Mr. Radcliff had the obsequies performed without application to the bank for the deposit.
Medford Sun, May 23, 1911, page 5


IT WAS ONLY A COW
BUT BILL'S GUN HADN'T BEEN FIRED SINCE LAST SEPTEMBER
So the Crowd Along Front Street Thought Murder Had Been Committed
    "Bang!"
    In the stillness of the night along Front Street last evening a deafening report rang out and startled the masculine passersby on that thoroughfare.
    Faces appeared at windows, shades were pulled up, screen doors slapped open; the streets and sidewalks were black with an agitated and excited crowd.
    What had happened! Had the city hall been dynamited? Had a fruitgrower gone crazy and started to shoot up the town? No one seemed to know. Yet the reverberations of that deafening report still range in everybody's ears.
    "Get the policeman!" someone cried.
    "No; here he is now!" another shouted.
    Through the darkness hovering over the Southern Pacific depot a towering form appeared.
    Above his rubicund features a helmet glittered, and on his breast a silver star cast its warning gleam. He was examining an empty cartridge with one hand, while with the other he was stowing a piece of heavy ordnance in his jeans.
    Then a second figure appeared. It, too, was towering, silent, portentous. "A detective," someone whispered. The figure stopped and stroked his flowing beard.
    "Eh? What's happened? Who's killed?" one of the crowd more venturesome than the others inquired.
    "Happened?" said he, "Wa', nuthin' so special. Only Councilman Wortman here asked me t'kill his caow."
    It was true. A consignment of cattle for the popular city father had arrived, and among them was a cow that had broken its leg in transit.
    And that was all the cause of the excitement. That and the fact that Bill's piece of ordinance is a .45 Colt and hadn't been fired since last September.
Medford Sun, June 9, 1911, page 5


COMMUNICATIONS.
    To the Editor: Allow me to ask through your columns who sells or gives the right to the itinerant speiler, faker or patent medicine man to occupy a position on the railroad right of way when last spring I was ordered off with my popcorn wagon. I would like to get on there again if the price is not too high.
S. KEMPTHORNE.           
Medford Mail Tribune, June 23, 1911, page 6


21 VAGS YIELD $1.15 ALTOGETHER
Bunch of Hoboes Rounded Up, Given Breakfast and Marched Out of Town--
Found Sleeping in Boxcars and Alleys and Ordered To Leave.
    Although business conditions seem to be improving, the money market is tightening up, there being little of the "filthy" in circulation. At least that is the conclusion reached by Mayor Canon sitting as police judge Thursday morning. Twenty-one vags had been rounded [up], and in the entire bunch he found just $1.15. In other words the general average of coin in circulation on South Front is 5½ cents per capita.
    None of the men were drunk when rounded up by the police--they were common vags on which a war of extermination as far as Medford is concerned has been declared. Mayor Canon hesitated to take the coin away from them, as they all wanted a bite to eat. So the men were herded in a body by the cops to an eating house and there given a cup of coffee and a bit of bread, then herded out of the city.
    The men were found sleeping in different boxcars and alleys of the city without funds and out of a job. These men must go, stated the city officials a few days ago, and therefore they were rounded up and then "shooed" down the tracks.
Medford Mail Tribune, June 29, 1911, page 8



Flashes Roll on Saloon Row
IS SURROUNDED BY BUZZARDS WHEN POLICE INTERFERE
Thomas Booth, Aged Seventy-Nine, Badly Intoxicated,
Holds to Last of Fortune
    Flashing an $800 roll in a swarm of roughnecks and hobos, Thomas Booth, aged seventy-nine, was found by the police in a maudlin state of intoxication on Saloon Row yesterday. He was taken into custody by Deputy Hall, relieved of his wealth and gold watch and placed in jail. The roll totals $777.20, of which $775 is in bills, the remainder in silver. The sum is believed to be the remnant of a fortune of $100,000, mention of which is made by the old man in his rambling talk to the police.
    Booth had the big wad tightly gripped in his fist when taken in by the officers. He was in serious conversation with himself and had about him a notable gathering of Saloon Row worthies who, however, were more interested in the proportions of the roll and the possibility of annexing a portion thereof, than in the wandering soliloquy. They were trying to induce the old man to a more propitious place for a touch when the officers took a hand.
    Booth was released from jail last night but was not given his roll. He is scheduled to appear before the mayor this morning, when an attempt will be made to ascertain some history of the man and his money. Evidently he has been on a rather protracted indulgence in the demon, and his mind is little clearer than his murky eyes.
    That Booth is of an influential family and that he has been possessed of wealth seem plausible. In his intoxicated condition yesterday he had little to say. While in jail he told that he is from Edgeworth, Wash., and that he came to Medford for personal reasons. His opinion of this city is anything but complimentary. He came here about two weeks ago and has been loafing about the city during that time, according to the police. He fell in with bad associates on his arrival here and during his short sojourn is thought to have blown in quite an amount of coin. The sum found on him yesterday was going with the rest.
Excerpt, Medford Sun, July 1, 1911, page 1


Much Trouble in Medford
DAY'S EXCITEMENT FILLS COUNTY JAIL
Six Drunks, Two Fighters and Two Gamblers
Form Grist for Justice
    What was the matter Wednesday? There was more trouble in the city of Medford than you could shake a stick at, and with the temperature at 98 at that.
    As a result there were ten boarders in the city bastille last night, six drunks, two fighters and two colored poker sharks.
    The fight caused considerable excitement along Front Street yesterday morning. Pat Duncan, it seems, had a grievance against H. M. McClaughlin, ranging from petty larceny to a Highland accent--McClaughlin came from Glasgow--and it was decided to settle the matter under the Marquis of Queensbury rules in the alley south of the Nash hotel.
    When Mac called in his father, George McClaughlin, to be referee, however, Duncan objected, so the rules were abandoned and a free-for-all fight resulted, in which the clan of McClaughlin started after him of the Celtic Highland title, and when the police arrived there was fur flying like dust in a Nevada whirlwind.
    A knife was dropped as Chief Hittson and Officer Hall arrived, and there might have been more serious results if the constabulary had not put in an appearance.
    The trio were arrested and cast into jail, although the younger Mac protested that he was fighting in self-defense.
    The second disturbance occurred on Main Street, in front of the new National Bank building, later in the day when Jack Colver crept up behind Joe Brown and gave him a biff behind the ear that stretched said Brown senseless in a nearby sand pile. Chief Hittson happened around just that time and nabbing the belligerent giant by the nape of the neck took him before Mayor Canon, where he was fined $15 and costs. Brown soon recovered consciousness and yesterday afternoon declared that he hadn't even a headache to show for it.
    The rest of the trouble was largely alcoholic, which, when the thermometer is around the 100 mark, isn't a trouble to be sneezed at.
Medford Sun, July 20, 1911, page 4


CATSUP BOTTLE AS WEAPON
TOM RILEY ATTACKS NICK GEHRITZ WITH TABLE ORNAMENT
Whisky Is Cause of the Trouble--Belligerent Is Put in Jail
    Bad whisky. Worse beer. Vile names. Broken head. Hospital. Jail. When Tom Riley broke a catsup bottle over the head of Nick Gehritz, a waiter in the English Chop House, because they couldn't agree upon sundry matters of intense interest to both, he didn't expect to be thrown in jail, but policeman Hella interpreted the city charter differently, and as a result Riley will appear before the municipal judge this morning to answer for his unseemly conduct toward Gehritz.
    With the blood streaming down his face and half-unconscious, Gehritz was placed in an automobile and taken to the Sacred Heart Hospital, where a number of stitches were taken in his scalp. An hour later he was on the street, the same old Gehritz as before, but more vindictive.
    The only reason Riley assaulted Gehritz was whisky. He misjudged his capacity, and taking up with more than he could assimilate went into the chop house to get something to eat and relieve his feelings. Seeing two Nick Gehritzes where there should be only one, it irritated him to such an extent that he indulged in vile and abusive language. Nick, though small, was valorous, and returned the compliment with interest. Seeing a moving picture show of catsup bottles, Riley plucked one of them and swatted the little Italian [sic] on his brain depository.
    Riley was too badly inebriated to explain his unusual conduct. Gehritz is none the worse for his experience.
Medford Sun, September 5, 1911, page 5



Orchard Men Tussle; Police Take Hand
Trio Land in Jail for Minor Fuss--Released by Mayor
    Having obtained too much of the liquid that stirreth itself about in the glass, Edgar Truitt, George Ford and J. A. Murphy engaged in a so-called wrestling match Monday afternoon. This match was one that required a great deal of room and the men found it necessary to cover the floors of two saloons and the greater part of Front Street. Chief Hittson decided such bouts were not to be tolerated and accordingly placed the men in confinement in the city jail.
    All the men were employed at one of the orchards adjacent to Medford and apparently on the best of terms before visiting the various thirst-quenching establishments of the city. Mayor Canon decided that their desire to pose as wrestlers had vanished after an hour's confinement and let them depart.
    Two other men were arrested for drunkenness, making five for the day.
Medford Sun, September 19, 1911, page 4


Hold Junk Dealer in Boy Cases
FATHER OF LAD FOUND GUILTY SWEARS TO COMPLAINT
Hearing Continued Until Next Tuesday--
Henry Lerch Gives Bonds for Appearance

    Upon complaint of L. E. Reames, father of one of the youths implicated in the series of thefts unearthed by the authorities the past week, yesterday swore out a complaint for Henry Lerch, 117 South Front Street, a junk dealer, on a charge of knowingly receiving stolen property. He appeared for the preliminary hearing in Justice of the Peace G. O. Taylor's court yesterday afternoon. His case was postponed until next Tuesday at 1 o'clock. He is at liberty on $250 bond.   
    The arrest is said to be based upon the allegations of the arrested youths, five who were Thursday sentenced to the reform school by Judge Neil implicating him as having a knowledge of their depredations. Young Reames is also alleged to have told his father important facts. The complaint against Lerch alleges the purchase of forty pounds of copper formerly contained in stencil cuts.
    The five youths will be held until after the preliminary hearing before going to the reform school, in order to be called as witnesses in the case. Friends of Lerch say that he has always borne an excellent reputation, and place no faith in the charges.
    Arrest of other boys said to be concerned in the thieving are likely to be made.
Medford Sun, December 23, 1911, page 1



STREET FIGHT LURE TO CROWD
CHARLES TULL AND CHARLES TERRELL ENGAGE IN COMBAT

Fracas Said to Have Grown Out of a True Bill

Returned by the Last Grand Jury
    A street fight that had its inception, according to allegations of interested parties, in an indictment returned by the last county grand jury, will have an ending in the police court before Judge W. H. Canon Saturday morning. The fight started where most Medford fights do start, at Main Avenue and Front Street, and was between Charles Tull, a livery stable man, and Charles Terrell of Brownsboro, a relative of whom was on the grand jury that returned the bill against Tull for manslaughter.
    According to eyewitnesses Terrell was standing on the corner when Tull approached and hit him a blow in the face, without any word of warning. Terrell recovered and began to fight, and landed a few blows himself. Bystanders stopped the fight and the police arrived, escorting Tull to the city jail, where he offered to pay his fine, the same being refused until a session of the police court. The men, according to friends of both, have not been friendly for some time. The fracas attracted a large crowd.
Medford Sun, January 20, 1912, page 1



KNIFE DRAWN IN ROW OVER FOREMANSHIP
    In an argument over who possessed the best title to foremanship in the employ of contractor John Natwick, two Austrians [sic], Scapulli and Antie, engaged in a fight on Front Avenue Saturday afternoon, in which a case knife sharpened to a razor edge is alleged to have been drawn. Constable Singler secured possession of the knife, the police arresting the pair. They were booked on charges of disorderly conduct.
    According to the story of the police, the men have at different times acted as foreman for contractor Natwick. Scapulli recently quit, and Antie secured the place. It happened that Scapulli wanted his old job back, and being refused, is alleged to have started a row. Before fighting he is alleged to have endeavored to induce contractor Natwick to discharge his rival so he could secure the place.
Medford Sun, January 28, 1912, page 10



TALENT MAN HITS THE ROW; IS JUGGED
    "Santa Claus" Wiggins of Talent hit the row Tuesday and for a time joy supreme raged in the breasts of the moochers. Santa Claus came to town well supplied with coin of the realm and proceeded to deal it out in handfuls. The police frowned upon his habit of giving money away and jugged him. Later when he was supposed to be sufficiently sobered to know better he was released, but he went back and started in anew. He was jugged a second time.
    Wednesday morning he made his final contribution. It was $15 and went into the general fund.
Medford Mail Tribune weekly, February 29, 1912, page 1


'CULLUD GEMMEN' IN FIST FIGHT

BILL JONES IS HIT WITH KNIFE; ELUDES POLICE
Jim Mitchell in City Jail for Part He Played
Battle in Blind Alley
    A colored gentleman of the name of Bill Jones is running loose in southern Oregon with one side of his face lacerated by the butt end of a butcher knife, and Jim Mitchell, a barbershop porter, languishes in the city jail as the result of a little scrimmage in the blind alley back of the Nash Hotel Thursday. The fight, according to the police, was over money matters, a woman, alleged slanderous remarks reflecting upon the truthfulness of the imprisoned, and a general and mutual dislike for each other. Bill Jones was the best runner and eluded the police, but the best fighter is in jail.
    When the police arrived upon the scene of combat Mr. Mitchell had Mr. Jones flat on his back, threatening to "cut yo' livah out." Mr. Mitchell forgot where that portion of the anatomy was located and hit his foe in the face instead. The police hove in sight, and Mr. Mitchell used his remaining strength in getting out of town and sight. The victor was marched to prison, much disgusted with happenings. The knife feature of the fracas makes the affair serious.
    Mitchell has been employed at the Bates Bros. barber shop, and heretofore has been of so peaceable a disposition that his show of ferocity was a surprise.
Medford Sun, April 16, 1912, page 1

Oaks Saloon, Medford, Oregon circa 1910
From a postcard postmarked 1910.

SAYS POLICE ABLE TO STOP SOCIAL EVIL
J. C. WESTERNBERG OF SAN FRANCISCO MISSION

SAYS AUTHORITIES DERELICT
Lecturer Names Two Places of Disrepute--
Declares Police Can Close Them Anytime They Choose on Evidence
    Declaring the local authorities are responsible for the social evil in Medford and that they may precede any action they may take by informing the guilty parties of it, J. C. Westernberg, superintendent of the "Whosoeverwill" Rescue Mission of San Francisco, closed a series of talks at the Baptist Church Monday night on white slavery.
    The speaker named the Royal Rooming House and The Oaks [Saloon, 32 North] Front Street as transgressors and declared that the city authorities could close them at any time they cared to.
    Yesterday Police Chief Hittson called Rev. A. A. Holmes and asked that Mr. Westernberg issue a warrant against the places if he had any evidence regarding them.
    "You need no evidence," declared the San Francisco reformer. "According to the Oregon law all the evidence needed is the common repute of the place. I have been in Medford long enough to know the common repute of the places in question. Ask any merchant in Medford. It is the duty of the police to shut up these places."
    The talks were illustrated by lantern slides showing the methods by which young girls are taken advantage of, with special reference to cafes, street flirtations, dance halls and joyrides.
    Both Mr. Westernberg and Rev. Holmes investigated the recent Chinese stabbing case and interviewed Laura White, the alleged slave girl. In their opinion both Jim Ling and Wo Lee are implicated in the white slave traffic, although both factions accuse the other of guilt, and try to maintain their own innocence.
Medford Sun, May 22, 1912, page 1



CLAIMED HE BLEW UP THE MAINE
NOISY BELLIGERENT STIRS UP FRONT STREET LOUNGERS
Officer Cingcade to the Rescue of Vociferous Prisoner with a Load
    "I've got a pension from the Japanese army! I've got a pension from the Russian army and I blew up the Maine!"
    Minus the special brand of extra-fast-running profanity, the above was the plaint of a stubby individual with warlike tendencies who attempted to conduct a frontal attack along Front Street last night about 7 o'clock.
    The first sign of an enemy appeared in the personage of a white-clothed waiter who hit the campaigner with his boot, depositing him in the street. Undaunted, but even more muddled, the battle-scarred hero started towards Main Street. Officer Cingcade, attracted by the noise, intervened at this time and took the captive to the city lockup, where his tale of prowess was smothered by thick walls.
    He will probably remember his name when he appears before Judge Canon this morning.
Medford Sun, August 1, 1912, page 1



DAY OF JUDGMENT IS NEAR, SAYS PHOEBE
WARNS MEDFORD PEOPLE OF DE LAWD'S WRATH

Thinks He Will Wait Until She Arrives in Seattle--

Tells of Her Vision
    Foretelling the Judgment Day to be only a few weeks distant, Aunt Phoebe Ann Williams, ordained of God to travel afoot and warn all the people between Fresno, California, and Seattle of the wrath to come, held an audience of over an hour last night at Haymarket Square as she recounted her vision of the last great day.
    According to Aunt Phoebe, who is 69 years old, she left Fresno April 2 when the tropical rains were heaviest. Since that time she has walked "jes' as far as my ole bones'll let me" every day, warning people of the awful day when "buildin's big as sinful man can make 'em is gwine to tumble into the bowels of the earth and flames red as blood rise up to the farthest stars." Only once has she taken a train, and that was when the citizens of Sisson forcibly placed her on a train for fear she would not be able to get over the divide.
    Vivid in every detail is the southern mammy's tale of her vision of the Judgment. Often the tears streamed down her black face as she related the tale of the sinner.
    "Ah was asleep in ma room in Fresno," said Aunt Phoebe, "when I heard God say to me, just as plain as I'se talkin' now, 'Phoebe, Aunt Phoebe'."
    "'What is it, God,' I answered, talkin' just like he did, 'cause I heard him talk afore."
    "'Phoebe,' said, he, 'the people's done gettin' too wicked--and I'se gwin to have a resurrection right away. You all start right away for Seattle and walk and I will provide'."
    "Then he showed me the Judgment so I could tell all about it. And I saw big buildin's fallin' right into a hole and blood-red flames a-lickin' up people and trees and everything."
    Following her talk the bystanders passed a collection for Aunt Phoebe, who had made no appeal for funds. Several dollars were obtained.
    When asked the exact date for the destruction of the world, Aunt Phoebe said she done guessed de Lawd would wait 'til she reached Seattle.
Medford Sun, August 2, 1912, page 1


OFFICER HAS TUSSLE WITH SCRAPPER
    Declaring that he would "shoot the man who slapped his face," Frank Belcher, proprietor of the pool room on Front Street, was arrested last night after he had abused a certain individual and harassed him for several hours. When Officer Pat Mego attempted to take him to the lockup the belligerent individual attempted to resist. A lively scuffle ensued, in which the officer got control.
    Belcher began his tirade against a man he had had some words with early in the evening. Several warnings failed to soothe him. When arrested he had a large pocket knife with the blade opened.
Medford Sun, August 11, 1912, page
1


GIRL CRAWLS FAR UNDER HOUSE AND DEFIES THE COPS
    From a place of vantage far back under a two-story house on North Front Street this morning, with less than 16 inches between the earth and the bottom of the floor joist, Alice Twrembly, aged 18, of Corvallis, defied the police of Medford and a half hundred citizens to "come and get me." As there was not room for a man under the building, the girl would probably be there yet had it not been for the winning words voiced by A. W. Walker, who finally coaxed her to emerge. She is said to be simpleminded and ran away from her home at Corvallis. She was located in this city this morning after a statewide search on the part of the authorities who took up the case at the request of her widowed mother.
    The girl has been in Medford for some time. She was taken in by a friend on North Front Street, where she was located by Acting Police Chief Cingcade this morning. He left the girl at the house guarded by Verne Canon.
    Young Canon was called to the telephone after he had been on guard for some time, and while he was absent from the room she went upstairs, crawled out of a second-story window onto the kitchen roof and, dropping to the ground, crawled under the house.
    For more than two hours the entire police department, aided by citizens and members of the fire department, labored to get her out. At once place the brick foundation was undermined, Jack Dent doing yeoman service with a pick and shovel. In the meantime A. W. Walker brought his winning vocal cords into play and induced the girl to come out.
    The girl will be returned to her home at Corvallis.
Medford Mail Tribune, August 24, 1912, page 1


GIRL UNDER HOUSE DEFIES POLICE
ALICE TWREMBLY OF CORVALLIS FOUND AFTER SEARCH
Kind Words Persuade Weak-Minded Maid to Give Self Up
After Long Siege
    Alice Twrembly, aged 18 years, said to be weak-minded, and living at Corvallis, defied the police, citizens and fire department Saturday morning. Alice left her home last week and the finale consisted of crawling under a house on Front Street, and refusing to give up the fort. Finally she was prevailed upon to come out, and she will be  returned to her widowed mother at Corvallis.
    Alice has been the subject of a statewide search. Friday she was located in Medford, but a search of the rooming rooms failed to reveal her whereabouts. Saturday morning she was discovered in the house of a friend on Front Street by acting chief Cingcade and left in charge of Vern Canon. While he was on guard the girl crawled out of a second-story window, down the roof of a shed and under the house.
    Thus barricaded, the young lady refused to move, there not being enough room for a man to crawl under, and until kind words moved her the police were in a quandary. She was under the house for two hours and A. W. Walker spoke the words that persuaded her to abdicate.
Medford Sun, August 25, 1912, page 8


STREET FIGHT STARTS VAGRANT CLEANUP
    Ernest Johnson, full of bad whiskey and a desire to fight, started down Front Street Monday evening seeking battle. The first man he came upon was Peter Ingram, who said he was not a railroad man and received a right swing that cut a two-inch gash on his jaw. Johnson had a burning hatred against railroad men and expressed himself feelingly on the subject to all pedestrians.
    In front of the Nash Hotel he encountered a man by the name of Reed, and they locked horns. They fought before a crowd of 200 for five minutes, and finally the pair was separated by Officer Cingcade. After the excitement was all over Chief Hittson tapped Johnson on the head with his "billy" and told him to "dry up." The air was blue with profanity.
    After the fight the police arrested every man along Front Street who could not give a good account of himself and immediately declared war on all undesirable characters.
Medford Sun, October 29, 1912, page 6


STRIP GUN FROM ASHLAND OFFICER
SPECIAL A. G. ERICKSON HAS HARD LUCK IN MEDFORD
Boys Gets Star and Police Six-Shooter--Wearer Thereof Is Put to Bed
    A. G. Erickson, an Ashland special policeman, wearing star No. 7, was divested of his star and gun by the Medford authorities Wednesday night and put to bed in the Nash Hotel. Mr. Erickson was sent home on the 11 o'clock train, and the gun and star will be shipped to the mayor of Ashland, who will use his own discretion on returning them to the wearer.
    According to the police and witnesses, Officer Erickson conducted himself otherwise than as an officer and boasted that he was a limb of the law, showing gun and star in proof thereof. He engaged in a jangle with a number of Medford young men, whom he threatened to arrest, and they in turn took his star away from him, turning it over to the night police.
    The police found Mr. Erickson and after surveying the situation decided it would be just as well for the peace and dignity of the state, county and city if he was separated from his six-shooter. To this ceremony Mr. Erickson objected, as he did to being put to bed.
Medford Sun, December 12, 1912, page 1



LERCH ACCUSED OF BEING FAGIN TO SMALL BOYS
    A cleanup of junk dealers who receive stolen property was started Wednesday morning when District Attorney E. E. Kelly had a warrant sworn out against [Henry] Lerch, proprietor of the Lerch Junk Shop on South Front Street. Lerch is said to have bought stolen copper and brass from a gang of a dozen boys who have been encouraged in stealing. The boys claim that Lerch told them to get more of the stuff and that they never had any trouble in disposing of it to him.
    A search of the premises revealed several articles which were identified by owners and there are a number of cases to be pushed against the junk man. The district attorney will probably prosecute Lerch on a charge of contributing to the delinquency of minors, and will follow up this case with more against certain other dealers as fast as evidence is obtained.
    It is held that Lerch's Fagin-like practices have encouraged boys to steal and that repeated reformations of this gang have always come to naught on account of the easy market offered for the stolen goods.
Medford Mail Tribune weekly, February 20, 1913, page 1


YOUNG BLOODS NABBED FOR KICKING UP ROW
    Night officer Mego on Saturday night arrested six young men of the city for kicking up a disturbance on West Main Street. They were arraigned on Sunday morning and nicked for $3 each.
    The young men were more or less drunk when one of them declared that he could whip the crowd. Then a free-for-all started which ended only when Officer Mego threw them into a taxi and hauled them to the city jail.
    The young men who were arrested gave their names as Robinson, Mohull, Corum and three Gill brothers.
Medford Mail Tribune, March 17, 1913, page 6



DIMINUTIVE NEGRO WOULD CARVE FRIEND
    Arthur Johnson, a diminutive colored gentleman of Ashland, was arrested Monday evening by Night Officer Mego, for attempting to carve the body of a fellow African with his knife, not having a razor at hand. Johnson was told to beat it Tuesday morning by the mayor[, acting as police judge].
    Johnson showed up in Medford Monday morning and proceeded to get drunk. He was a little fellow but whisky made him bad. Last night he decided to decorate his companion with his knife and was pinched.
Medford Mail Tribune, March 18, 1913, page 4


MEDFORD CHINESE PULLS GUN UPON ASHLAND CHINK
    Ti Lee, a Chinese cook at the Nash Grill, pulled a six-shooter on Charlie Mong, an Ashland Chinaman, in front of the Manhattan Cafe about 11 o'clock this morning, but Sergeant Pat Mego took the weapon away from him before he could pull the trigger. Both Mongolians were insane with rage and hurled death threats in their native tongue. Both are in the city jail awaiting a preliminary hearing before Justice Taylor.
    Mong came up from Ashland Sunday to collect a debt from Ti Lee, and local Chinamen claim they have been arguing the question ever since. The debt was contracted, they say, in a poker game, and that Ti Lee owes much money, which he refuses to pay. Ti Lee, they declare, was getting ready to leave on the train when Mong made his demand. Ti Lee then made his gun play, which Sergeant Mego thwarted by nearly twisting the wrist off the Oriental.
    The pair were put in separate cells in the city jail, where they continued their argument. According to the police, Ti Lee has been on the warpath for the last month, and in an ugly mood all the time.
Medford Mail Tribune, November 4, 1913, page 4


RAISE ROUGH HOUSE IN CHINESE EAT SHOP
    Following rough tactics in the Chinese restaurant on Front Street Tuesday, Lee Fung, a Chinaman, in self-defense pulled a pistol on Fred Reed and James Fitzgerald, two white customers. In the struggle for the gun it was discharged. Fung was badly beaten up. All three were arrested by officers Cingcade and Crawford, Reed and the Chinaman afterwards being released on $50 bail. Before Police Judge Gay this morning fines of $10 were applied.
Medford Mail Tribune, February 18, 1914, page 2



    An epidemic of dog fights broke out on Front Street Friday afternoon, between about a dozen country dogs and Mose Barkdull's "Turk," the most belligerent of Medford canines. "Shorty" Miles' Airedale, called "Mike," stood on the sidelines out of danger and barked.

"Local and Personal," Medford Mail Tribune, March 7, 1914, page 2


    Andreas Price, a laborer top-heavy with booze, ran amuck this afternoon in the Oaks pool hall, and it took six men to subdue him. He was put in the city cooler and chained to a bunk until he quiets down. Until arrested he was raising "Ned," cursing and fighting. His face is bruised and battered from many blows. A wallop to the solar plexus laid him out. Price is the wildest case the police have had to handle in some time.

"Local and Personal," Medford Mail Tribune, August 26, 1914, page 2


    A warlike spirit that would gladden the heart of Kaiser Bill pervaded 20 Medford and three Portland citizens Tuesday night in front of the Nash Hotel, and the police had considerable difficulty in preventing an outbreak of hostilities. A man by the name of Robinson employed by the S.P. claimed that his neutrality had been violated by an insult offered by one of the Portlanders, and that nothing would suffice to heal his wounded honor but a limbering up of fists. Officers Cady and Crawford finally quelled the disturbance, and the police were on the lookout this morning for another outbreak. All is quiet now.

"Local and Personal," Medford Mail Tribune, September 16, 1914, page 2



    A chicken thief lifted eight fine birds from their roost at 242 North Front Street last night and left no card. The owner of the chickens was awakened and yelled at the intruder to get out. He got, but he took the chickens with him.
"Local and Personal," Medford Mail Tribune, January 28, 1916, page 2


    Medford papers report that most of [the] near beer establishments on Front Street in that city are closing for want of patronage.

"Local News," Jacksonville Post, February 19, 1916, page 3


MODERN BAKERY TO REPLACE OLD SALOON ROW
    Initial steps in the regeneration of Front Street have been taken with the purchase by R. Nurmi of the Nurmi Bakery of the Seattle Rooming House structure on South Front Street, in which he will install a $4000 baking plant and machinery. The structure will be remodeled and repainted and a new front installed. The contract for this work has been let to contractor Lines, who has begun the work of tearing down the rear.
    It is the intention of Mr. Nurmi to install a modern bread-making plant, with all the machinery in full view, and expects to be in full operation within two months. The second story will also undergo repairs and remodeling.
    The new enterprise will add new tone to a portion of the business district of the city, sarcastically known in the past as "Whisky Row." According to Commercial Club reports, a move is under way for the tearing down and removal of the unsightly shacks at the end of the block, for the building of more sightly buildings.
    Work upon the oven to be used by the bakery will begin next week.
Medford Mail Tribune, May 31, 1916, page 6


PROGRESS AT MEDFORD
Modern Stores Take Place of Former Saloon Buildings.
    MEDFORD, Or., June 3.--(Special.)--Front Street in Medford is being transformed from a row of unsightly shacks and tumble-down saloons into an attractive business street. Several months ago Brown's saloon, at the corner of Main and Front streets, was changed into a modern confectionery store.
    Now the [Seattle] rooming house will be remodeled by R. Nurmi, of the Nurmi Baking Company, into a model baking establishment, with new machinery and fixtures, costing about $4000.
Sunday Oregonian, Portland, June 4, 1916, page 18



    Fire at Medford early Friday morning destroyed the Oregon Rooming House and three shacks at the corner [of] Front and third streets. It is thought that the fire was of incendiary origin. The buildings were owned by Irvin Dahack.

"Local News," Jacksonville Post, June 29, 1918, page 3


    Three slightly intoxicated couples of young people from Montana drove up in a large car in front of the Optimo Cafe on Front at 3 o'clock Saturday morning, and as they alighted from the auto accidentally dropped a quart bottle of whiskey, which was smashed. The six then went into the restaurant and despite the protests of employees began to dance and make much noise. Night policeman Brownlee saw the bottle incident and thinking the party had more booze summoned the other night policeman, Chas. Adams, and the two officers searched the car and the members of the party in the restaurant but found no more. Inasmuch as because of the broken bottle they had no evidence the policemen said that if the men would clean up the broken glass they would let them go. The proposition was quickly accepted, and the party got into the car to return to Grants Pass when it was discovered the car's gas tank was empty, hence they remained here until daylight.
"Local Briefs," Medford Mail Tribune, May 31, 1919, page 2


MEDFORD A MODEL CITY SINCE THE BOOZE EMBARGO
    Since the wartime prohibition act went into force, which shut off the keeping and sale of booze in California, Medford has become a model city as far as sobriety is concerned. Things have been very quiet with the police and sheriff's office, and only two or three booze arrests were made only a week after the act went into effect.
    The city is also very quiet late at night, the police having little to do, whereas formerly many drunks and half-drunks used to come back from Hornbrook and Hilt and raise more or less disturbance. Then the police and sheriff's force used to spend most of the time night and day looking for bootleggers and watching for drunks.
    Last Saturday night several well-known orchard employees who had gotten hold of whiskey someplace--probably had it in store for an exceptionally dry day--were in the city late and created more or less disturbance for a short time but left town before the night police heard of their presence. This was the first semblance of disorder for weeks.
Medford Mail Tribune, August 6, 1919


HOME BREW IS RESPONSIBLE FOR GUN PLAY
Tom Murphy of Medford Shoots George Douglas When Latter Insists on
Sampling Domestic Stock--Wounds Not Serious-Offender is Held Under $2000 Bonds.

    Tom Murphy, the local junk dealer, was cooking home brew yesterday evening about seven o'clock, at his residence on South Front Street. The seductive aroma of the mixture of hops and corn assailed the nostrils of George Douglas, the upholsterer, who was passing. George, who once imbibed of a Jacksonville mixture which raised boils on his neck, announced that he wanted a drink. Mr. Murphy left his kettle long enough to announce that the pilgrim of thirst was not welcome.
    "You blankety blank bum," proclaimed the upholsterer, "if you don't give me a drink I'll come and get it."
    "You enter this house and I"ll fill you full of daylight," was the reported rejoinder.
    Whereupon Douglas, who knows no fear when a drink is concerned, entered the sacred precincts of home brew and was met by a horse pistol about the size of Herr Krupp's Big Bertha. A wrestling match ensued during which Murphy fired two shots, one grazing the intruder's temple and the other inflicting a slight flesh wound in the chest. Murphy had the wounded man down and was endeavoring to rap him on the head with the heavy end of his firearm when Jack Plymale heard the rumpus and, sailing in, separated the two men.
    Night policeman Adams arrived at this point and placed Murphy under arrest, also corralling a copper boiler filled with what appeared to be sour mash and two dozen bottles, properly corked, filled with liquefied rough-on-rats.
    At a hearing before Justice Taylor this morning Murphy was held under $2000 bonds to the grand jury, charged with assault with intent to kill. Tomorrow afternoon at 2 o'clock Murphy will be given a hearing on having a homemade still in his possession.
    Douglas was able to be about as usual today, his wounds being of a very innocuous character. The affair aroused considerable excitement on South Front Street during the vesper hour. The trial promises to involve a hot legal battle over how far the proprietor of a home-brew castle may go in protecting his home and firewater.   
Medford Mail Tribune, August 3, 1920, page 1


    Tom Murphy, principal in the Front Street shooting affray last Monday evening, was found guilty of infringement of the bone dry law in Justice Taylor's court yesterday afternoon, and was given 30 days in jail and $100 fine. Two dozen bottles of hooch, a wash boiler half-filled with sour mash and several gallon jugs containing home brew were offered in evidence. Murphy's only defense was that he cooked the combination of corn and hops for the benefit of his stomach. Judge Taylor decided any stomach that could stand the evidence offered was not in a very serious condition. As Murphy was in jail anyway on the "attempt to kill" charge, now awaiting the October term of court, the sentence does not materially affect his future plans. Night Officer Adams, Sheriff Terrill and Deputy Sheriff Schrader were witnesses for the state. Murphy had no witnesses and refused the services of a lawyer.

"Local Briefs," Medford Mail Tribune, August 5, 1920, page 2



    The hardy miners of the Nash district advanced into the sun Thurs. p.m., but the scent of the radiators clings to them still.
Arthur Perry, “Ye Smudge Pot,” Medford Mail Tribune, January 21, 1921, page 4


    The Southern Pacific gateman’s shanty located on Haymarket square this week attracts much attention and has been christened Monte Villa in honor of Mark Montgomery, the S.P. agent, who is so pleased at this compliment that he will have the shack set back further from the street and painted.
“Local and Personal,” Medford Mail Tribune, January 22, 1921, page 2


    An odd trio were dispensing music on the street this forenoon in front of the Nash Hotel. A blind violin player was rendering sad numbers and was accompanied by his wife, who played a guitar, and his small son playing a flute or piccolo. The music attracted a large crowd, which for a time badly congested the sidewalk traffic.

"Local and Personal," Medford Mail Tribune, August 8, 1927, page 2



FRONT STREET BITTER BARS HIT BY RAIDS
    As the result of a carefully planned dry raid campaign, led by federal officers, nearly 20 arrests have been made in and near Medford since Monday, with the possibility of more this week. The raids began Monday afternoon in the Forest Creek section with the arrest of six local men, three of whom are proprietors of soft drink establishments on Front Street.
    It is possible the federal government may institute padlock proceedings against the Idle Hour, Estes and Pastime pool halls on grounds of being public nuisances. Rankin Estes, Phil Rinehart, proprietor of the Pastime, W. Taylor, bartender, and Archie Sutherland and Harold Sutherland of the Idle Hour are accused of selling bitters by the drink and for beverage purposes.
    Taylor and Harold Sutherland are in the county jail, and the others are at liberty pending preliminary hearings scheduled to be held this afternoon.
    The sale of bitters and other medicines containing alcohol in small quantities as stimulants is prohibited by federal law and in the state is prohibited as the result of the recent passage of a law restricting the sale by only licensed drug stores.
    Mrs. Jane Wolgamott, a woman of 50 years, was arrested on East Main Street this forenoon on a warrant alleging sale, and she will have a hearing today or tomorrow. Ray Sargent was arrested in the Griffin Creek section on a warrant alleging sale, and he has been released on his own recognizance, pending hearing. The release was ordered in view of his sick wife demanding his attention at home.
    Yesterday Dewey Agers was arrested at Phoenix on a warrant sworn on a sales charge. His was the first arrest of the afternoon, and was followed by the arrest of Joe Mayham at Eagle Point on a similar charge. Coming to Medford, Eddie Keeler and Sam McClendon were arrested on charges of sale. The same charge also caused the arrest of A. E. Carpenter at a local auto camp. Carpenter is alleged to have been selling liquor from the same cabin where Ted McCrary was arrested last week for selling Officer Talent three pints of gin.
    Arrested by the police, Wenton Keeler, brother of Eddie Keeler, and R. E. Burns were sentenced Monday in justice court on booze charges to terms in the county jail. Fred Knox, arrested Saturday for possession of home brew, was fined $50 in justice court.
    When they appeared for arraignment yesterday afternoon on charges of possession of moonshine, George Wolff was given until today to plead, as were the three others, L. Cyphert, Autie King and George Reed. Wolff's bail was set at $1000, while $750 each was the bail sent for his three alleged partners. Officers say they found 40 gallons of alleged moonshine on the Wolff place at Forest Creek, with 15 gallons found under a woodpile and other jugs found hidden under bushes. It is possible Wolff may be turned over to federal authorities.
    Evidence for the warrants was obtained by two federal undercover men who allege they made purchases from the different defendants.
    The officers taking part in the raids included L. O. Shirley, district federal enforcement head; Jerry Talent, Clarence Worden and Deputy Sheriffs Louis and Paul Jennings, and the two undercover men.
Medford Mail Tribune, May 8, 1929, page 3


SALE OF BITTERS ON FRONT STREET COSTLY TO THREE
    William Rinehart, Archie Sutherland and Rankin Estes, proprietors of three Front Street card rooms and soft drink establishments, were fined $250 each in justice court yesterday, on charges brought against them by federal officers for selling bitters and other medicines containing alcohol for other than medicinal purposes. Harold Sutherland and Harvey Taylor, bartenders, were each fined $75 on the same charge. A sixth defendant, Dave Lynch, also clerk, was scheduled to plead today.
    The arrest of the six men came as a part of an extensive dry raid campaign, netting over 20 prisoners, principally on charges of sale. It is possible more arrests may be made.
    So far, disposition has been made of the following cases: George Reed, sale, five days and $500; Lida Wolgamott, sale, $100 fine; Leland Shidy, 40 days and $350 fine; Autie King, sale, four months; George Wolff, bound over to federal court on sale charge; Joe Marham, bound over to federal court.
Medford Mail Tribune, May 9, 1929, page 3


REOPENING OF POOL ROOMS IS DEEP MYSTERY
Mayor Noncommittal on Granting License to Raided Proprietors--
Rumor Spreads Other Places 'Tipped Off' on Raids.
    Although the three pool and card room proprietors whose licenses were revoked and their bonds declared forfeit by the city council last Monday forenoon, because of their having pleaded guilty in court to selling "bitters" or tonics, by the glass, following a raid made by federal prohibition enforcement authorities, and their friends have been beseeching Mayor Pipes ever since to lift the ban and grant new licenses and bonds, on their promise to hereafter not to sell any intoxicants, these pleas have evidently had no effect.
    When asked this noon as to whether he was going to permit these establishments to open up again, and if so when, Mayor Pipes only smiled and said he had nothing to say on the subject. Asked specifically if the city administration was going to relent in its attitude and permit the three pool and card room proprietors to take out new licenses on or before the city council meeting next Tuesday, he answered "no," said the meeting had nothing to do with the matter, and intimated that if ever new licenses were granted, the period would be indefinite.
    The mayor has impressed on the three proprietors and the many others who have been laboring with him in their behalf that the amended city ordinance governing card and pool rooms, and which will be passed by the city council next Tuesday night, would have teeth incorporated which would make the hair curl of the card and pool room proprietors.
    It is understood that the three whose licenses were revoked have all come voluntarily to the mayor and declared they would never again sell "bitters" or other intoxicants, and would obey to the limit every city ordinance, and asked to be permitted to take out new licenses and open up again. These establishments have been financially hard hit since their licenses to operate card and billiard and pool tables were revoked. They can only sell tobaccos, lunch and the like now.
    The raiding of these three out of all Medford's card and pool rooms has roused much comment generally about the city, and especially as to why two such places, which had made a practice of selling "bitters," were not raided. These two places were reported to have had the heaviest sale of bitters.
    The public general talk is gradually growing more pronounced as the rumor spreads that other card and pool rooms had been "tipped off" in time, so that the undercover federal prohibition agents were unable to buy "bitters" in these places and thus obtain evidence against them.
    This talk about certain card and pool rooms having allegedly been "tipped off" has been so widely circulated that even a minister of the city visited the mayor and asked why the other pool and card rooms were not raided and closed.
    The only general answer that can be given to this question is that the raiding authorities were unable to obtain evidence on which to make arrests, through the inability of their agents to buy bitters in them. It seems that all of a sudden sometime prior in the raid these establishments ceased selling bitters to anyone not known to them, and thus evidence could not be obtained.
Medford Mail Tribune, May 16, 1929, page 8


    The three pool halls and card rooms on Front Street, the licenses of which were recently revoked by the city, are mostly deserted places since the licenses were taken away. Card tables and chairs are empty, and billiard tables are no attraction. The licenses were revoked as an aftermath of the arrest of the proprietors of Front Street establishment for selling "bitters" by the drink.
"Local and Personal," Medford Mail Tribune, May 18, 1929, page 2


Skid Row Is Blamed
    To the Editor: Can a community operate and maintain a skid row for the benefit of the veterans and then expect to pass the buck to a few policemen because things don't go right? Why not get to the root of the matter and do away with the booze joints? A more efficient way to take care of the drunks is not the answer.
C. W. Powell
Rt. 1, Box 86
Central Point
Medford Mail Tribune, August 31, 1931, page 4


Seven 'Ask for Louie' Dens Near Medford
    A brief survey this week disclosed the well-known fact there are seven so-called speakeasies in and around Medford, ranging all the way from semi-respectable, well-managed places to dirty hovels of filth and vice, where victims have been known to be drugged, robbed and thrown out when they have been cleaned.
    At least five of these establishments maintain women of disreputable character, according to information, and serve home brew under 3.2 beer labels. All serve moonshine, of varying quality, and minors have been patronizing practically all the houses.
    One interesting sidelight came following the death of one man who was returning from a roadhouse when the proprietor of the establishment approached a Medford newspaper office with the request that the name of his place be deleted from the news--the unfavorable publicity was ruining his business!
Jacksonville Miner, October 27, 1933, page 1


BEER PARLOR IS SCENE OF BRAWL
    Charles (Blackie) White, 43, was scheduled for a hearing in city court this afternoon, and L. F. Slavens, 60, was given a ten days' suspended sentence in city court this morning as the result of an alleged battle in a beer parlor on South Riverside at 11:15 o'clock last night.
    White and Slavens, who police said had resorted to throwing chairs and bottles after Slavens had assertedly insulted White's stepdaughter, were arrested by city officers.
    Slavens was released last night when he furnished $30 bail, and charged with violent and disorderly conduct, was given a suspended sentence in court, pending his good behavior.
    White, who had not paid a $10 fine imposed on him August 10 of last year for disorderly conduct, was held in jail.
Medford Mail Tribune, January 26, 1934, page 4    This is just to demonstrate that occasionally brawls would take place in venues other than Front Street.


TRANSIENT CARVED BY DRINKING PAL IN HOLIDAY BRAWL
    A Christmas brawl and knifing affray early Sunday morning, in a rooming house at 33 S. Front Street, sent one man to a hospital with numerous cuts on his head and face and caused the city police arrest of the alleged knife-wielder.
    Emil Oney Johnson, 30, of 14 South Bartlett Street, was being held in the county jail on a charge of assault while armed with a dangerous weapon. He has asked for a preliminary hearing in justice of the peace court, which will be held tomorrow at 2 p.m.
    Robert Clark, 29, a transient, the knifing victim, was being held by police on a charge of drunkenness and as a material witness. Clark, not seriously injured, received treatment for his wounds at Community Hospital.
    Noah Everett Barnhart, 30, a transient and roommate of Clark's, was also being held as a material witness.
    City police reported that when they were called to the rooming house by Elizabeth Cameron, the housekeeper, they found Johnson standing in the doorway of Clark's room with a knife in his hand, forcing Barnhart to remain in the room, and that Clark was lying on the bed with his head and face slashed.
    Johnson, police said, claimed Clark had stolen his 17-jewel Waltham watch and chain. Police later searched the room but could not find the watch.
    The housekeeper of the rooming house told police that the three men, with another unidentified person, had been doing considerable drinking and fighting among themselves for several hours.
Medford Mail Tribune, December 27, 1938, page 2


HE WAS BLEEDIN' LIKE A FOUNTAIN!
    Lee Cook, 17, CCC enrollee, who was badly stabbed Saturday night in a knife fight with Orman Sullivan, 19, on Front Street, is expected to live.
    Cook was cut numerous places, and city police declare he owes his life to Owen K. Phelan, Copco employee, who was in a nearby store. Phelan applied first aid treatment to stop the flow of blood.
    Cook had three cuts on the scalp, a bad one on the neck that just missed the spinal column, one on the left arm from shoulder to elbow, one on the forearm, and numerous others.
    Both are from Alabama.
Medford News, June 13, 1942, page 1



"Wino" Problem Nothing New, Will Improve

    Chief of Police Clatous McCredie declared yesterday that in his opinion the so-called "wino" situation in Medford was not as bad as it is in other cities of like size on the Pacific coast, and that most of the trouble would be over in a week or so, as soon as some of the transients move on to other fruit working sections.
    At the city council meeting this week, a delegation of businessmen in the area around South Front and South Central appeared to ask the council to do something about the "winos." Suggestions ranged from hot seats to running them out of town.
    "The trouble is that some of them are local residents, with local families," McCredie said. "You can't run those people out of town. Others are woods workers who come to town once or twice a month to blow their stake. They are glad to get out of town when they sober up."
    "Others," McCredie said, "are fruit workers, and they work a few days and then drink a few days. They will be gone as soon as the fruit season is ended, or it gets a little colder. And from reports," he said, "I believe Medford hasn't nearly the problem along that line that other cities have."
    The delegation of businessmen said that the drunks had been pestering people and business houses on the south side of town, had been committing obscene acts, and being nuisances in general. McCredie said that city officials have been aware of the situation for a long time, but that the situation is not now as bad as it had been, and would get better.
    "Some of the worst pests are local residents," McCredie said, "with families here. If their families can't make them work, I don't quite see how we can. We don't have concentration camps in this country--yet."
Medford News, October 18, 1946, page 1



Clean Up South Front

By Moore Hamilton, editor, The Medford News
    The horrible death of Mrs. Margaret Cornell, victim of a sex fiend, brings into glaring prominence the need, in Medford, for a cleanup of conditions on South Front Street, where Mrs. Cornell had admittedly been hanging out, and where her attacker undoubtedly lurked.
    South Front Street has long been a sickening sore on Medford's otherwise fair face. Derelicts, human dregs, winos, prostitutes hang out there, and it has become a breeding place for immorality and for just such a tragic disgrace as the crime of Tuesday morning!
    It is true that hardly a day passes that Medford police do not lead some babbling, staggering drunk from that district to the city pokey, to sober up, and at night the number increases. It is also true that what Medford has of that sort of disgraceful condition is pretty well confined to that area. But it still doesn't mean that the condition should get as bad as it has there.
    The city police have confined Medford's scum to that specific district. They must be credited with that. But we believe a closer check should be made on just what goes on in that district and how drunk a man or woman must get before being trotted off to the can to sober up.
    If the tavern operators on Front Street do not tighten the reins, and clean up their own houses, then the city officials are certainly going to do it for them, and the public in Medford is going to demand such action forcefully. Things have gone just about as far as they can go. They have gone further than there was any excuse for them to go. It is a disgrace that such conditions have existed, and now is the time to do something about it.
    When right in the center of a city, a street such as South Front can become so bad that even ordinary drunks won't go there, it's getting out of line. For a long time it has been a street that a man certainly wouldn't want his wife or children to walk down during the later afternoon or evening. And there isn't any sense in that.
    The Medford News calls upon the tavern operators on South Front to clean up, and if they don't, The Medford News will see to it that officialdom cleans them up.
The Medford News, April 25, 1949, page 4     In January of 1955 Marion Franklin Piening was sentenced to 15 years imprisonment for the death of Mrs. Cornell.


WOULD STOP WINE SALE AT BRANCH
    Maintaining that "fortified wines are a beverage ordinarily consumed only by winos or psychopathic alcoholics," 48 Medford citizens are seeking to ban the sale of same at the local branch store of the state liquor commission, it was revealed yesterday. A petition, signed by the 48, was presented the city council, asking that the council take action to stop the sale here.
    The proposal, they stated, is made in an effort to clean up "Front Street," where most of the "winos" spend their time.
    The petition has been referred to a special committee, which will decide whether or not the city can make a recommendation to the state liquor commission, asking a ban on the sale of fortified wines.
Medford News, August 12, 1949, page 2


FRONT STREET FIGHT SENDS ONE TO HOSPITAL
    John Ellis, 49, is in the city jail, and Burton Henry Hurlburt, 49, is in a local hospital as a result of a Front Street altercation here. Hurlburt, found unconscious on the sidewalk, is suffering from a skull fracture, broken jaw and blood clot on the brain.
    Police say Ellis has admitted "slapping" Hurlburt. Both are orchard pruners and had been residing together.
Medford News, January 27, 1950, page 5

South Front circa 1960
South Front circa 1960

GAMBLING GAMES OPERATING,
WIVES OF GAMBLERS SAY
by Maxwell L. Thayer
    Gambling games are operating in Jackson County.
    In several cases, the district attorney has been informed that the games are going on, when they are going on, who is operating them and what the stakes are.
    Women whose husbands sit in the games have informed the district attorney, and these same women have informed The Times.
    To check up and see if the games are going on has not been too difficult. Recently, this reporter visited one of the places--in Medford--and talked to the man who runs it and to the man who owns the place.
    There was no hiding behind subterfuge. We merely introduced ourselves and got the information. We weren't playing detective.
    Some of the other places which we have been told are operating we have not yet had a chance to visit. They are in Gold Hill, Rogue River, Central Point, Talent and Ashland, which seems to have the biggest of these games, according to the information we have received.
    In Medford there are four games going more or less steadily. One is a Portuguese game, the name of which we can't spell and don't know how to play. Sitting in this game, within spitting distance of the city hall [at Fifth and Central at the time], are a number of professional gamblers. The stakes are high.
    There is a game on Front Street in Medford that is patronized by oldtimers who might just as well be playing in someone's home. They play pinochle at nominal stakes. There is another game of nominal stakes on Front Street that is rummy. No one gets badly hurt.
    In one of the major hotels a group of gamblers hang out. A big stakes poker game goes on now and then. It moves from hotel to hotel, but mostly the headquarters are in one hotel. California gamblers frequently enter the game.
    In Ashland the game is poker, with $5 the minimum to buy in and 25 cents limit on raises. This game is said to be in the open. Draw poker is played. It is called a game of science.
    In Central Point the game is also poker, with the limit varying from 25 cents down, and in Gold Hill, Talent, Rogue River and various other towns throughout the county games are in process, but they are mostly of the homey type with stakes low and the same oldtimers sitting in day by day.
    But here is what is being lined up for the future.
    When the new Highway 99 [Interstate 5] construction starts, and the men come in for that work, gambling will open wide or go underground, depending upon the district attorney.
    Already the advance guard, the gamblers are here, feeling their way. Attorneys have been approached cautiously about defending those caught in raids.
    And don't forget the pinball machines are still paying off.
Rogue River Times, August 24, 1956, page 1


GAMBLING IS CONTINUING
    Gambling in Jackson County continued almost unabated last week, despite a revelation by The Times that it existed.
    A few places shut down their pinball machines, and one of the big games, circulating in Medford hotels, took a brief vacation. The Times last week mentioned the game as circulating among the "major" hotels. The Jackson is a major hotel and, according to the manager, Betty Boyle, no games are permitted there. Pinball machines have been removed also.
    Meanwhile, in Central Point, the Corner Club was closed by a federal tax lien.
Rogue River Times, August 31, 1956, page 1


10 Men Arrested When City Police Raid Card Game
    Medford city police last night arrested nine men in connection with gambling, and the 10th for vagrancy, in a raid on the Whistle Stop restaurant, 226 North Front St.
    Arrested were Francis Wilson Kirk, 48, of 226 North Front St., owner of the establishment; and James Hokanson, 53, of 1017 West Ninth St., Medford, who police said was dealer for the game, and who is employed by Kirk.
    Card players arrested were Ernest John Dukeshier, 45, 11 Jeanette Ave., Medford; James Guinane Morgan, 53, of 825 King St., Medford; James William, Scalberg, 37, of Route 2, Box 848, Central Point; Lloyd Bedwell Waller, 65, Grand Hotel; Genaro Vargas, 38, of 763 Posse Lane, Medford; Weldy Tipton Poff, 50, of 1110 West 11th St., Medford; and Judge Taft Florey, 52, of 1005 East Main St., police said.
Not Playing
    Orval Kermit White, 54, of 1207 West 10th St., Medford, was arrested for vagrancy, police said. They added that he was not participating in the card game at the time of the raid.
    All were lodged in the county jail, Police Chief Charles Champlin said.
    The raid, in which 10 police officers participated, was staged about 9:15 p.m. yesterday, after the department and the district attorney's office obtained from District Court Judge Rawles Moore Friday a search warrant.
    Champlin said the police department had reports in the past that gambling was going on at the establishment.
    Police said chips were stacked on the table, and money in a cigar box held by the dealer was confiscated. The card game was in process in a concealed room, which had an outside entrance, police said.
Medford Mail Tribune, March 3, 1957, page 1


Review of Front St. Policy Suggested
    City Councilman Stanley Jones suggested at Tuesday night's city council meeting that sometime this spring the council review its policy on "Front St."
    Jones referred to the street as an "eyesore" and said the volume of complaints from residents on the tavern-lined street about its condition is increasing.
    The councilman said at one time a "Front Street area" in Medford was considered a "necessary evil." But, he said, since it is now located in the center of Medford's business district and may affect pedestrians, both shoppers and other residents, improvement of conditions on the street should be reconsidered.
    He added "the street" should be considered early in the year while the council still is not pressed with other matters.
Medford Mail Tribune, March 21, 1957, page 1

South Front parking lot, August 15, 1958 Rogue River Times, page 20
South Front parking lot, August 15, 1958 Rogue River Times, page 20


    Front Street has been cleaned up considerably since the [Medford Gospel] Mission was founded there [two years ago,] and required police patrol has been cut from four to one man.

"Board Postpones Decision To Move Gospel Mission," Medford Mail Tribune, March 19, 1961, page 1


Transfer of License for Tavern Voted by Medford Council
    Removal of one of the last of the Front St. taverns was assured by action of the Medford city council last night.
    The group, despite the protests of a "stirred-up" downtown businessman, approved the transfer of the liquor license for Otto's Tavern from 39 South Front St. to a new location at 2940 North Pacific Highway.
    Charles Burton Broomfield, proprietor of the tavern, was represented last night by Medford lawyer Joel B. Reeder, who said his client's lease at the Front St. location will expire Nov. 1, and that its operation would close Oct. 15.
    But George Lewis, owner of Rogue Travel Service, 111 East Eighth St., urged the council the "eliminate" the tavern rather than transfer its location.
Should Be Eliminated
    "Front Street has been a pig sty for years," Lewis charged, "and you shouldn't sweep it under the rug. You should eliminate it entirely."
    Lewis, whose business is located about a half-block away from Otto's Tavern, claimed the proprietors "haven't done a decent job." He said he has had to call the police at least once a week about things "these dregs of humanity have done."
    He said he was at complete variance with the city police report, which had found no reason to recommend against the transfer. "The proprietors will run a poor establishment," he predicted. "Their patrons have ruined my business for five years."
    Reeder replied that the new North Pacific Highway location would "not be objectionable," He pointed out that there will be "no close grouping of taverns," and that the closest similar operation would be about one-quarter mile away.
    "As long as there is a demand for this kind of operation, and as long as it is approved by the Oregon Liquor Control Commission, it should be continued," he stated.
    Police Capt. Clyde C. Fichtner, in answer to councilmen's questions, said that taverns were more of a problem when they were "concentrated" in one area, such as Front St.
    Mayor James Dunlevy agreed that "decentralization will help minimize the problem." The vote to permit the transfer of the license was unanimous.
Medford Mail Tribune, September 20, 1963, page 1



    When the [Medford Gospel] mission closed June 24, 1962, the furniture, equipment and supplies were stored. During its 3¼ years of operation on South Front Street, the mission's nightly services were attended by more than 60,000 persons.
    An average of 800 men per month received some kind of aid from the mission's operation, 1,691 meals were furnished free of charge and a night's lodging extended to a monthly average of 500 persons. Clothing was also given to those who were in need.
"Construction of Gospel Mission Building Starts," Medford Mail Tribune, March 4, 1964, page 1


    Mr. Heath had been one of the speakers at the dedication of the [Medford Gospel] mission in 1959 when it opened on South Front Street. It closed three years later when the building was razed.
"Medford Gospel Mission Is Dedicated Sunday Afternoon," Medford Mail Tribune, October 12, 1964, page 9




Last revised March 18, 2017