The Infamous Black Bird Southern Oregon History, Revised

Jackson County 1922

    The following items from the Oregonian hotel column demonstrate that Medford is figuring largely in Portland news just at present.
    Gus Newbury, an attorney of Medford, is among the arrivals at the Imperial.When the primaries are held next May Mr. Newbury's name will probably be on the ballot in Jackson County as a candidate for the Republican nomination for circuit judge to succeed Judge Calkins, who is about to retire from the bench.
    J. G. Gagnon, registered at the Hotel Oregon, owns the railroad which operates between Medford and Jacksonville. Also he has a mill and box factory in Medford and is now filling an order for a great number of orange boxes for the California market.
    "Lumber activities and irrigation are the two big things which are interesting Medford people just now," reports S. S. Smith, newspaper man of Medford and member of the Republican state executive committee for Jackson County. "The Pacific & Eastern Railroad, which runs from Medford to Butte Falls, is being reconstructed and is to be extended 12 miles into the Four-bit timber which Mr. Olds, owner of the road and the timber, bought some time ago. The Brownlee Lumber Company has about completed the mill which it has been erecting for nearly a year and the mill is waiting on the extension of the railroad, for the Brownlee plant will cut for Mr. Olds and Brownlee. The plant will give employment to several hundred men. The timber to be tapped is what is said to be the largest body of pine in the state--timber in which an ax has never been set. The Medford irrigation district has announced that it will have water this year for 10,000 acres. The water is to come from Mount McLoughlin. All things considered, the prospects for Medford's immediate future are particularly bright." Mr. Smith is registered at the Benson.
    "Jackson County is going to have a real fair grounds, with automobile races, horse races and substantial, permanent buildings," states J. E. Mason of Medford, a visitor in Portland. "The county levied a tax of 1 mill for a year, raising $40,000 for the fair ground, an expert from the California has laid out the speedway for automobiles and there will be a half-mile track for horses within the speedway circle, and inside the track will be an aviation landing field. It is believed that arrangements can be made so that [the] Jackson County fair can be on the circuit and the same automobile racers who appear in Southern California will drive their cars in Medford. A similar arrangement may be made with respect to horse races. Jackson County is an ideal place for wintering horses and some very fine animals are being kept there this winter."
Medford Mail Tribune, January 19, 1922, page 3

Recites Conditions About Northwest in Newsy Letter Telling Particularly of Boost Spirit Apparent There
    Tourists in Oregon are being deprived of the wonderful scenery afforded by the beautiful mountains because of the forest fires that have been raging there for the past two weeks.
    A. A. Piddington, city editor of the Press, who, with Mrs. Piddington, is touring through the Northwest, writes interestingly of his trip as follows:
    "Reached Portland last night (Saturday, August 5) or rather pushed our way into town through the smoke. Sometimes you cannot see clearly over a half mile. We have not caught a glimpse of the high mountain peaks at any time, and the sun has a hard time even to get through. This makes traveling by motor car very unsatisfactory.
    "Your vision is restricted to a short distance on each side of the highway; the beautiful vistas of mountains and forests which you know could be yours, if the air was clear, are cut off by a thick pall of smoke which is everywhere.
    "Besides this, Oregon is dry, very dry. Fruit and berry crops are suffering; in fact the small fruit crop is lost. Peaches, apples and pears have been hard hit, according to those with whom I have talked. They have been praying for rain the past two months or more, but so far their prayers have not been answered and there is little indication of rain at present writing.
    "The smoky and dry conditions have in a way spoiled our trip. We had planned to go to Seattle and then to Vancouver, but can hardly see the use of driving across Washington if you cannot see anything but the road and the towns and cities.
    "We are planning a trip to The Dalles, and perhaps make the trip to Astoria. Unless we feel differently we will start south about the middle of next week.
    "The roads have been very good. There are detours here and there but most of the way is good and smooth. We met one Riverside and one Redlands car on the road Friday, but did not know either party.
    "A great many cars from other states are traveling on the highways. Last year there seemed to be more with California nameplates, and while there are many from the Golden State, they are almost equaled by those of the middle west and eastern states.
    "These cars are of all makes and showing all degrees of service, but they are all loaded to the guards with camping equipment.
    "Every town in Oregon seems to be trying to outdo the neighbor in caring for the band of rovers. Auto camps are on every hand, some of them free, but the best of them are conducted by the municipalities with a charge of 50 cents a day per car. This charge pays for the use of water, wood, shower baths and other accommodations, and everything about them is clean and sanitary. At Ashland, Ore., the auto camp is in beautiful Lithia Park, with flowers and trees all about and besides the aforementioned perquisites, a stereopticon lecture was included in what you got for 50 cents.
    "The talk was in the nature of a boost for Ashland and Jackson County, and the illustrations were splendid. The chamber of commerce of this thriving town of 5000 people certainly is to be congratulated upon its plan to set forth the advantages of the section to the many visitors from every part of the United States.
    "The road program in Oregon is being pushed vigorously. While there is a considerable portion of highway across the state to be surfaced, the grading has been practically completed. Occasionally motorists are held up where the road crews are at work, but usually a detour is provided. I think the worst road we encountered on the trip was at Shasta Springs, California, where the trucks were hauling materials for road construction. This was no detour, but it certainly 'got my goat.'!
    "Since we began to climb the Siskiyous the weather has been fine. It was even cold at Sacramento, and not bad at Redding and Red Bluff. Here in Oregon it is delightful. The natives call it warm, but after traveling through Kern, Tulare and Fresno counties, we are of the opinion they don't know what they are talking about.
    "Found copies of the Press at Sacramento, Grants Pass and Portland."
Riverside Daily Press, Riverside, California, August 12, 1922, page 5

Last revised June 3, 2023