The Infamous Black BirdSouthern Oregon History, Revised

Medford in 1911

It seems as though no American magazine could print anything nice about Medford without its being repeated in the Medford papers. This was the primary duty of a booster: reinforcing and spreading the gospel of Medford.

MEDFORD. Jackson County. Population 8100. Settled 1884, incorporated as a city [1885], in Rogue River Valley on Bear Creek and Southern Pacific railway, 328 miles south of Portland, 443 north of San Francisco, 5 east of Jacksonville, county seat, 12 northwest of Ashland. Christian, Baptist, Episcopal, Lutheran, Methodist Episcopal, Methodist Episcopal South, Presbyterian, Catholic churches. Public school, opera house, water works, electric light and power plant, 3 newspapers: Medford Sun, Medford Mail Tribune, Saturday Review. 3 banks, flour mill, several hotels, large stores. Big Pines Lumber Co. have mills and factories here employing over 1000 men. Fertile land, best in the world for fruit of all kinds, fine for grain. Ships lumber, flour, grain, fruit, livestock. Extensive quartz and placer mines in vicinity. Pacific Telephone & Telegraph Co., Independent Telephone Co., Rogue River Valley Telephone Co., telegraphs Postal and Western Union. Express Wells Fargo & Co. Mail several times a day. Alonzo M. Woodford, postmaster.
R. L. Polk & Co.'s Oregon, Washington and Alaska Gazetteer and Business Directory 1911-12,
page 225     Abbreviations spelled out to facilitate searching.

    A city with an increase of one hundred percent in population within the past two years. This is the record which Medford can show to the world today.
    On or about the first of April, 1909, a committee appointed from among the members of the B.P.O.E. to take the census of the city of Medford brought in their returns, and it was found that there were 5,300 people residing within the city limits. In May, 1910, the government took the census, with the result that Medford showed a population of 8,849. Since that time the increase has been more than enough to make Medford a city of 11,000 inhabitants, according to the most conservative estimates.
    During these two years many new business blocks have been erected, among which are two four-story, several three-story blocks and a five-story hotel in the course of construction. All these buildings are of brick, stone or concrete and are modern in every respect. More than one thousand residences, ranging in value from $750 to $15,000, have been built in these two short years, and yet it is next to impossible to find a vacant house in the city of Medford.
    A water system, which takes its water from a mountain stream twenty-seven miles distant, has been installed at a cost of a half million dollars, and is second to none in the state of Oregon. A perfect system of sewerage has been put in, several miles of cement walks have been laid, nearly ten miles of hard surface pavement has taken the place of rough roads and muddy streets, and contracts for more than six miles more have been let, which will be built this summer, the work of which is being pushed as rapidly as possibly at the present time by the Clark-Henery Company.
    To go into details as to the numerous improvements made in the city of Medford during the past two years would fill a good-sized book, but we briefly refer to a few of them, such as the planting of trees along the streets, the enlarging and beautifying of the city park, the creation and grading of new streets and a thousand other things which are necessary in a rapidly growing city in which the citizens take pride.
    According to government statistics only one other city in the United States shows a greater percentage of increase than Medford has made in the past ten years. Oklahoma City enjoys that honor, and yet Medford has made by far the largest portion of its growth during the last three years.
    There may be some who read this article who will say that Medford has been enjoying a boom and that in a short time the bottom will fall out, leaving vacant business blocks and homes and dissatisfied people.
    In answer to this it can be truthfully said that Medford has never had a boom; her growth has been steady but decidedly robust. A glance at the wonderful resources which are tributary to Medford, including her orchards, farms, timber and mineral wealth, and the immense amount of land which has never been turned with a plow but is still in its native state, will convince the most skeptical that Medford is still in its youth, and that she will not only double but quadruple in population within a few years.
    The reason why Medford has had such a phenomenal growth is that its citizens, realizing the wonderful opportunities, have advertised it. As the "up-to-date" merchant who has goods to offer tells not only his customers but everyone within the radius of his town through the columns of his paper and they come and are convinced, so has Medford convinced the world of her natural supremacy.
    Too much credit cannot be given the Commercial Club of Medford, which embraces practically every business man in the city, and to the Greater Medford Club, the ladies' auxiliary, who have done so much in advertising and beautifying our city.
    Medford can deliver the goods; the Rogue River Valley can deliver the goods; Southern Oregon can deliver the goods, and the people of the crowded East are finding it out and are coming from every state in the Union as well as from foreign countries to find Medford and the Rogue River Valley a much better city and country, promising even more than they expected.
April 1911, The Rogue

Being a Recapitulation of One Oregon Town's Activities.
Medford Mail-Tribune.
    Some interesting facts about Medford were brought out at the Commercial Club meeting and some were forgotten.
    There is not a vacant storeroom in the city, nor an empty residence. Buildings are rented before completed.
    Every line of commercial business, despite increased competition, shows material increase over a year ago.
     Business is better today than ever before--on a sounder, better and more substantial basis. The income from municipal water works is steadily diminishing the tax levy.
    Medford leads all Oregon in percentage of increase gain in population in postal receipts, in bank deposits. in public improvements, in buildings.
    More additional orchard acreage being planted this year in the Rogue River Valley than in any three districts in Oregon combined, and the commercial orchard area tributary to Medford is greater than that of any three other districts.
    The Rogue River Valley has double the acreage in apples that any other section of Oregon has, and a greater acreage in pears than all the rest of the state.
    More placer gold is being yielded by the mines of Southern Oregon this season than is produced in all other sections.
    More quartz mines are being developed this spring in Southern Oregon than for many years past.
    More sawmills are preparing to open for business this spring than in the history of the county.
    In brief, every line of activity reflects and re-echoes the prosperity of this section by far the most promising in Oregon.

Morning Oregonian,
Portland, April 10, 1911, page 6

June Number of Mt. Angel Publication Foresees Rapid Growth--
What Medford Has Done in Last Two Years

   The June number of the Mt. Angel magazine contains the following interesting story concerning Medford:
    No city of the world of its size has done such an amount of public and private improvement as has been crowded into the past two years in Medford--and yet rapid as the city's progress has been, it has scarcely kept pace with the valley.
    Medford in 1910 has spent $377,615 for 8.43 miles of pavement, with as much more contracted for, $74,006 for eighteen miles of cement walk, $116,412 for sewers, $167,159 for 20.7 miles of cast iron water main, $275,000 for a gravity water system, a grand total of nearly a million dollars.
    A score of fine business blocks, a new depot and four hundred residences have been constructed in the past twelve months, and as many more are planned for the coming year--the total expenditures in improvements exceeding five millions.
    Nineteen ten has seen Uncle Sam give Medford a population in May of 8,842, an increase of 392 percent in ten years, the greatest increase of any city in the union save one. It has seen postal receipts reach a total of $29,431, an increase of fifty-four percent during the year. It has seen bank deposits totaling $2,376,582, an increase of over twenty-two percent. It has seen the number of schoolchildren increase to nearly 1700. It has seen the number of Bell phones increase from 650 to 1250 and an independent system established.
    The dying year has witnessed James J. Hill acquire the Pacific and Eastern Railroad, its completion to Butte Falls, and Medford made the terminus of Hill's Oregon trunk line now under construction, affording another transcontinental line to the east. It has witnessed the beginning of an extension of the Rogue River Valley Railroad from Jacksonville towards the Blue Ledge copper district and other railroad development. Nineteen hundred and ten has also seen the beginning of construction of the Crater Lake Highway, designed to open up to tourist travel a scenic wonderland equal to the Yosemite, and the commencement of three fine hotels designed to accommodate the tourist travel. It has witnessed the passage of an initiative bill by the people closing the Rogue River to commercial fishing, adding to the tourist attractions of the region the finest angling stream in America.
    The year now closed has seen the planting of an additional 20,000 acres of commercial orchard, which will make over 75,000 acres of planted orchards in the Rogue River Valley. It has witnessed the organization of a central fruit growers' exchange to handle the business with profit to the producer. It has witnessed the establishment of brick and tile factories, the opening of granite and marble quarries, of lime deposits and a revival of the mining and lumber industries.
    Not only Medford, but every town and hamlet in the valley has grown and improved. Expansions in all lines of business, development in all lines of industry, the opening up of countless latent resources is the order of the day.
    Among the many improvements initiated by the progressive citizens of Medford is the strenuous effort being made to secure for the city lower railroad freight rates to Medford and distributive rates out of the city. Actions are opening before the interstate commerce commission and the state railroad commission to secure rates that will enable the building up here of a jobbing center. A twenty percent reduction from Portland has already been ordered, and though appealed, will probably shortly go into effect.
    The development of southern Oregon is not due to a boom, in any sense of the word, but to steady and systematic effort and energy on the part of its citizens, the fruit of whose enterprise is each year becoming more apparent. The progress is rapid only when compared with the lethargy so long prevailing in other parts of Oregon.
    What does the future hold for Medford and the Rogue River Valley? Just as rapid progress as the past five years. Development has only started. With the opportunity afforded by geographical location, with enterprise and industry and unity of action, no reasonable limit can be placed upon the growth of city and country. Nineteen eleven will see 12,500 population for Medford and 1915 should see 25,000.
Medford Sun, July 2, 1911, page 10   Medford's population would not reach 25,000 until the 1960s.

Chapman Avers That Medford Is Livest Wire in Northwest
(Oregon Journal)
    "Without disparaging other clubs, I think Medford has the best Commercial Club in the state of Oregon for a city of its size," said manager C. C. Chapman of the Portland Commercial Club, upon his return from the Rogue River Valley last night.
    "Medford has a live population, and they are certainly doing things there in a progressive fashion. We people of Portland should become better acquainted with them and their district. The Rogue River Valley has the advantage, too, of a blending of the climates of California and Oregon, and it is simply delightful.
    "Most of the people are easterners and from the middle states, and they are certainly pleased with their new homes. I say new homes, but not a few of them have been there several years, having gone into the valley soon after it was discovered that fruit could be grown to the greatest perfection.
    "The city is building up rapidly. Many store buildings are being erected, but there seems no difficulty in filling them. They have stores there that compare favorably with the largest in Portland, with an air of metropolitan life everywhere in evidence.
    "Medford is a city of automobiles, and it certainly does one good to see how the orchard owners enjoy suburban life, while at the same time they are part of the city, the auto having solved the problem of distance.
    "The Medford people and the people of the Rogue River Valley are determined to make a big showing, and they are making splendid headway. It behooves the people of Portland to become acquainted with the Rogue River Valley. The benefit will be mutual. We know pretty much here of our own section, but should also become familiar with other sections of the state. The people here do not realize, even in a small way, what an asset the state has in the Rogue River Valley."
    Mr. Chapman was at Medford Wednesday to address the Commercial Club and discuss plans for the future, and he says he found the work carried on splendidly. One feature that appealed very strongly to him was the fact that the club sends literature to every person applying to the Portland chamber of commercial club's [sic] promotion department for information about Oregon. This he considers an excellent method that should be observed by every club in the state. The Portland club's inquiry department sends out a list of names and addresses of people every day to the various commercial clubs in the state, and if literature is sent to these persons, there is a very strong probability of them becoming interested in one part or another of the state.
    Mr. Chapman says he found that there is still a great deal of land to be had at a very reasonable price, although of course bearing orchards are worth a great deal.
    "But," explained Mr. Chapman, "few of these orchards are for sale, hence the value must be there. I spoke to several orchard owners, and they said they would not think of selling. It is no easy matter to deal with a man who does not want to sell."
    Medford is inviting especially people who will work on the farms, establish homes and go into fruit growing or truck gardening.
    "I was told," Mr. Chapman continued, "that speculators do not have to be invited; they come anyway, but the class of people wanted are those who will till the soil."
    It is also said that there are excellent opportunities for men who will work orchards on a profit-sharing basis.
Medford Mail Tribune, April 9, 1911, page 1

City Has Increased in Population
Orchards Are Drawing Thousands of People to Oregon
and Great Improvements Are Being Made
Medford, Oregon, Jan. 1, 1911
    A town or city which grows and increases in population like Medford has in the past four or five years, at least 25 percent of its population being newcomers within each year, that city or town soon loses its community intimacy and in a few years becomes so cosmopolitan that the stranger is the rule rather than the exception.
    Aside from this noticeable lack of general intimacy and hospitality, Medford is a most attractive city. In fact, I believe I can safely say that no other city of its size in this country is attracting so much attention. All over the states, wherever a geographical knowledge of the Pacific Slope is confined to not more than a half dozen cities, Medford will, nine times out of ten, be among them.
    This is due to conditions which have laid the foundation for a great city in the near future and to one of the liveliest and most systematic publicity propagandas ever carried out. Medford, through its Commercial Club, spends from $15,000 to $25,000 a year in the preparation and dissemination of literature picturesquely calling the attention of all people to the great and wonderful resources and opportunities that exist here.
    Winning the grand sweepstakes at the 1909 National Apple Show and first and second places at various similar exhibitions since have been a strong factor in attracting national attention this way. The development of Medford is most vividly exhibited by its census figures. According to the federal report this city had a population of 1791 in 1900; in 1910 (May) its population was 8840, an increase of 392 percent in ten years, the gain being exceeded during that period by only one other city in the United States, Oklahoma City.
    When we came here two and a half years ago the city had less than 5000. Today it is over 10,000. It is prophesied without reservation that the city will have 15,000 in 1912 and 25,000 in 1915. And I do not believe this to be any idle boast.
    One must understand conditions here to accept this. This valley, of which Medford is the center, now has 65,000 acres of orchards, a great deal of them producing the highest class fruit, and 200,000 acres will be added to the new land set to orchards this season. More than 100,000 acres are yet available for this industry alone, as lands are cleared. A $2,000,000 irrigation project will provide water for the greater portion of the valley lands.
    Besides this industry is the timber resource of 22 billion feet, gardening, tanning and poultry raising, and a mining industry which has already added $25,000,000 in gold to the nation's wealth.
    Last year's assessment of Medford was $2,250,000. This year it is over $6,000,000. New business blocks are being represented by two, three, four and five-story buildings. During the past two years the city has spent $931,581 in public improvements, among which are 20.25 miles of sewer mains, 20.06 miles of water mains, 8.43 miles of street paving, 28.76 miles of paved sidewalks, and a water supply system costing over $200,000, and prices in and adjacent to Medford have been advancing accordingly and are from 100 to 200 percent higher than when we came here so we were fortunate in getting a foothold when we did.
    I will not further indulge in an array of figures that may grow tedious. Suffice for the present for me to say I have never seen a place grow and advance like this. Another strong asset is the building of a railroad from here eastward into central Oregon to become a part of the great Hill system. Thirty miles of this road is now completed. It is believed this road will go from here westward to tidewater.
    A man should have some means to come here, for it costs money to develop land into [a] revenue-producing tract or to buy an already improved tract. Wages for skilled mechanics are good. The cost of living is very high. Ranch produce of all kinds brings high prices. We have fared pretty well since coming here, and some of these days we hope to make a visit to renew old friendships in Richfield.
                                                                            Yours truly,
                                                                                        A. B. WILLIAMS
Excerpt, Richfield Reaper, Richfield, Utah, January 19, 1911, page 7
Transcribed from a very poor copy. Figures may not be correct.
Handsome Men of Medford, January 29, 1911 Sun
"Handsome Men of Medford," Medford Sun, January 29, 1911

By Her Loyal Sons and Daughters
    Six hundred and seventy-nine answers were received by the Sunday editor of the Mail Tribune in reply to his query: "What in your estimation does Medford need the most?" A recapitulation shows that:
    Seventy-four favor payrolls.
    Sixty-eight favor clean streets.
    Fifty-three favor hitching racks for farmers.
    Thirty-nine favor development of mineral resources.
    Thirty-seven favor better highways in and out of town.
    Twenty-one favor building inspector and ordinance.
    Aside from these there were many other needful things pointed out. Here are representative answers:
    Manufacturing and canning plants, such as will insure a good monthly payroll to the now idle men on the streets.--J. W. Ling.
    A good hitching rack to accommodate the farmers.--Clyde A. Birch.
    A surveyor that knows how to lay out streets, not real estate men.--H. M. Bakerman.
    Honest business men that won't cheat producers. Less graft, no saloons, a few hitching racks.--A. E. Waterman.
    More transportation facilities. This inevitably resulting into more factories, which naturally involve payrolls.--W. G. Aldenhagen.
    Sane prices for all kinds of merchandise, so that a working man can live.--E. G. Rueden.
    First seek the kingdom of God and all other things needful shall be added.--A. P. Talent.
    Remove greatest evil, alcohol, real cause most every trouble; sell unfermented, rename saloon recreation hall.--Louise G. Lansing.
    A free public library and large, convenient, warm reading rooms as a grand educator.--N. Southeard, Central Point, Or.
    A newspaper that prints some of the outside world news and sporting news.--H. L. Henderson.
    A public hitching place with dry footing, where farmers can leave their teams, instead of resorting to overcrowded stables. This should be of vital importance to the merchants of Medford.--J. S. Vilas.
    Manufacturing.--S. S. Aiken.
    Y.M.C.A.--E. Price.
    Factories, creating a payroll in winter.--W. S. Weston.
    A steel brush in their street sweeper.--T. F. Casselman.
    Electric power and light and reasonable cost.--A. A. Davis.
    A few third class funerals for knockers.--J. T. Summerville.
    Hitching posts for farmers.--O. Jones.
    Hitching posts for farmers' horses.--A. W. McPherson.
    Big power rights on Rogue owned by city; cheap power draws factories; factories build cities.--G. E. Marshall.
    Hitching racks for farmers' horses.--H. Williams.
    That the freight rates to and from Medford be adjusted.--H. C. Garnett.
    To advertise more extensively our mineral resources.--Mrs. Addie K. Rippey.
    A Jackson boulevard, an 8-foot grass park in center, planted with trees, a 20-foot drive on each side, a 6-foot walk; not allow heavy teaming; to beautify the city before it is paved.--Richard Vermeer.
    Three complete toilets and lavatories in city park, two for gentlemen and one for ladies.--F. A. Talbot.
    Stop adding new additions and improve and beautify present city. Just take a peep at our city alleys and streets--they tell the whole story.--J. G. Martin.
    Be a clean city. Everybody do their part and help clean up the city.--J. A. Daron.
    A number of up-to-date, progressive gardeners to supply our market with seasonal vegetables.--A. D. Lembocker.
    A Young Men's Christian Association building. I think this beautiful work is the upbuilding of our boys in every way and will do much good.--Mrs. R. Vermeer.
    A decent hitching post for the people from the country to tie their horses.--R. A. Daugherty.
    Abolishing of saloons. Then you will have a city to be proud of.--Mrs. W. H. Taylor.
    A change of library quarters, that ladies and young girls and children need not pass by saloons and through groups of loafing, expectorating men.--Mrs. E. M. Janney.
    Building inspector and ordinance.--H. D. Turner.
    Vote Medford dry and take the blot from her fair name.--Mrs. Nancy Obenchain.
    Some public water closets.--H. L. Leach.
    Manufacturing industries and then more manufacturing industries, good roads, garbage wagons, apartment houses and harmony among business men.--T. R. Tanner.
    A land values taxation system. This great unearned increment belongs to the community who create it.--Dr. Rickert.
    Money.--W. M. Brown, Eagle Point.
    A good building inspector, so dad says.--Robert Stuart.
    Persistent and consistent publicity. Methods that have made Spokane, Wash., would work wonders for Medford, Or.--Samuel R. Evans, 5519 Monroe Avenue, Chicago.
    Needs a dry place to hitch teams in place of mud hub deep.--J. C. Schilling.
    Get rid of those saloons and put in good, respectable business houses.--Mrs. John Conway, Talent, Or.
    Merchants to unite on a strictly cash business.--Louis Hirl.
    Publish Sunday's Mail Tribune on Saturdays. Everybody attend church on Sunday and be earnest Christians.--Wm. M. Floyd.
    Plenty of money to pay her present indebtedness and to make further improvements.--Mrs. D. P. Soliss.
    Shade trees--the quick growing varieties.
    Mills, factories or some means of steady employment for the working people of Medford.--Mrs. Gilbert Wheeler.
    A hospital to be operated without the profit.--George Miller.
    An organization for the development of the mineral resources of the surrounding hills and valley.--W. N. Offutt, Sr.
    Clean streets, pave more, and above all keep cleaner those already paved, including back alleys.--Gerard Taillandier.
    Sufficient and suitable hitching places, including three sides of old water tank park.--A. Frideger.
    A modern opera house to accommodate city of 30,000 people.--W. H. Humphrey.
    A good fire fighting apparatus with four competent paid monthly firemen and a volunteer company of 20 minutemen drilled weekly. Nothing better to save your beautiful homes.--C. C. Paul, 324 North 46th, Seattle.
    A public market.--C. Carey.
    The opening and straightening and grading of the streets as her blocked streets are a disgrace.--W. Samuel Bateman.
    A first-class hotel.
    A finished street in each direction that country people can get in to patronize Medford.--J. C. Pendleton.
    One main street paved in each direction to city limits, then country people can get into town.--S. K. Adams.
    An assay office and sampling works.--A. Duff.
    A new electric company to furnish more, better and cheaper lights.--Robert R. Slewing.
    A good payroll; put in a good factory.--A. Helms.
    A decent place for farmers to hitch their horses. Anyone not agreeing has only to go down and take a look at the mudhole that the progressive city of Medford provides us with.--B. B. Wilson.
    An editor to concede, uphold and defend every right he claims, notwithstanding creeds, clans, customs.--T. H. B. Taylor.
    Get rid of saloons. Clean up.--W. E. J.
    A law that will banish all jealous husbands.--Violet Blossom.
    Capitalists who are not afraid to loan money at 10 percent on gilt edge security.--A. F. Barnett.
    Five-cent beer.--O. U. Kidd.
    Good wide roads and a system by which they can be repaired annually.--E. G. Guthrie.
    Get rid of about six dirty saloons and dirty bums, and someone to keep Shorty Garnett from being so awful, awful busy. He's only 56, but looks to 76. I knew him in Texas.--J. V. Meilam.
    More boosters like George Putnam, and less real estate graft.--Louis L. Huillier.
    Furniture factory, a large carriage factory and a sugar factory. Sugar beets do well here. I tried some last year.--E. J. Runyard.
    Streets, alleys and yards cleaned of all filth and inflammable material, and kept clean.--Chas. P. Bartlett.
    More good "boosters" for all our undeveloped resources.--J. D. Heard.
    Clean Front Street, fewer clubs, finer churches to adorn our city is Medford's greatest need.--Mrs. C. W. Conklin.
    The curbing or elimination of rent hogs, so business may be done on a reasonable basis.--W. E. Phipps.
    Five thousand of the real estate boosters of Medford to switch part of their boosting to the mining interests of Southern Oregon.--H. A. Mears.
    An up-to-date canning and pickling factory to encourage small fruit and vegetable raising.--H. B. Cady.
    To weed out, if possible, the many very dishonest real estate men and "cut out" so much hot air.--D. L. Woodruff.
    A respectable place for farmers to hitch their teams.--D. D. Duff.
    Medford business men should make a campaign and raise funds to improve every main road from the surrounding country leading into the city if they expect any more new residents in the valley and retain the trade of those who have already purchased high-priced land and built expensive homes.--A. W. Ware.
    Less talk about East Side and West Side, and all put our shoulders to the wheel and boost Medford.--E. C. Ireland.
    One good commercial bank.
    To show more brotherly love towards Grants Pass, Ashland and others.
    Industrial plants--factories that will provide a steady payroll.
    Free library, books and papers.
    Paved streets on North Riverside, also some sidewalks.
    More granite in our buildings in place of imported brick; keep the money at home and by so doing increase our payrolls.
    A better school system with more efficient teachers.
    To have the piles of railroad ties removed from Riverside Avenue and East Main Street.
    Judge the future by the past and do municipal improvement work accordingly.
    Urge no further bond issues for the city except for actual necessities.
    Work tooth and toenail for more railroads and factories.
    The encouragement for factories to locate here.
    A railroad from here to Crescent City, Cal., and the Hill lines connected up.
    Open the coal mines at Roxy Ann to supply fuel to Medford for domestic and manufacturing use.
    A town clock.
    A Young Men's Christian Association. Waste barrels on the streets.
    A better lighted city, not only the business center, but all the residence districts.
    A federal building--and it should be built of Oregon granite.
    A factory which will support a good payroll.
Medford Mail Tribune, February 19, 1911, page B1

    The schools are crowded and two more large new buildings are to be ready for the opening of school in September. Now [we] have three new buildings. Almost one million dollars have been spent in public improvements during the past two years, as follows:
Street paving, nine miles . . . $377,615
Sidewalks . . . 74,006
Sewers . . . 116,412
Water mains . . . 90,159
Macadam roads . . . 1,597
Gravity water system . . . 275,000
Total  . . . $934,789
    We have four splendid banks that have handled a business of more than $3,000,000 during the quarter closing December 31, 1910.
    The Pacific Telephone Company had 678 telephones in operation here one year ago, and they expect 2000 local phones to be put in use a year hence. An independent system of telephones has just been installed and opens for business with the new year.
    Bank deposits totaled $2,375,582, over 22 percent increase.
    These are a few of the noticeable things being done in Medford and the Rogue River Valley, on the strength of the fruit raised here, one might say, for the payroll from manufactories is inconsiderable.
Excerpt, J. E. Fuselman in Martinsville, Indiana Reporter, "How He Happened to Come to Medford," Medford Sun, February 1, 1911, page 5

Medford Sun, February 19, 1911

    The Medford Commercial Club has been swamped with a flood of letters asking for statistics concerning the city and whether it is a modern city, as to its schools and various other questions.
    In order to save time and as all of the letters ask for practically the same information, the following letter has been authorized by the Commercial Club and is known as Bulletin No. 4.
    There has been about 3000 of these bulletins sent out by Secretary Malboeuf. The following is the letter:
    Population (1910 official census), 8840; increase of 393.5 percent in ten years. Greatest gain of any town or city in United States during that period, excepting Oklahoma City. Estimated population December 31, 1910, 10,500.
    Medford now fifth largest city in Oregon; was fifteenth in 1900.
    Postal receipts, 1910, $29,192.42; increase of 54 percent in twelve months.
    Bank deposits, December 31, 1910, $2,162,000; increase, 22 percent in 1910. Bank clearings for quarter ending December 31, $3,242,133.52.
    One million dollars expended during two years ending December 31, 1910, including $577,615 for street paving, $75,000 for cement sidewalks, $116,412 for sewers, $90,159 for city water mains, $275,000 for gravity water system.
    Medford now has 8.43 miles of asphalt pavement, 18 miles cement sidewalks, 14.82 miles of sewers, 13.24 miles of water mains, all constructed in two years.
    Five million dollars expended in 1910 for business blocks and residences; over 400 residences were erected; $2,500,000 expended in 1909; buildings under construction December 12, 1910, exceeded 300; building operations in 1911 will represent more than in 1910.
    Buildings to be erected in 1911 include Hotel Medford, $120,000; Sisters of Providence hospital, $100,000; two brick public schools, each costing $33,000; Page Hotel, $100,000, and numerous business blocks. Over 300 residences already contracted for; Congress has authorized $110,000 for federal building; site purchased January 19, 1911; Carnegie library to be built in 1911.
    Hill Lines spent over $40,000 per mile for twenty-one miles of railroad between Eagle Point and Butte Falls, and reconstructed line between Eagle Point and Medford, twelve miles; line will be pushed in 1911 to connection with Oregon Trunk Line, which will give through line to the East.
    School census in 1910, 1682, increase of 33 percent in twelve months; present schools, one high and two grade, and Catholic convent.
Medford Sun, February 28, 1911, page 4

Medford's Hustling Abilities Are Pointed Out
by Writer in an Eastern Magazine
Writer in Merchants Trade Journal, Published in Des Moines, Ia.,
Tells of Some of the Impressions He Received While Visiting This City
Recently--Medford Is Pointed Out as a Model To Work By.
     The following article, under the caption "Medford Commercial Club Offers $5000 Reward," appears in the June issue of Merchants Trade Journal, published at Des Moines, Ia.
    The Commercial Club of Medford, Ore., believes in their town. They think so much of their town that they have drawn a line in a circle 40 miles around it and now they offer a reward of $500 cash to any person who can, by authentic testimony, show that any city or town in the United States outside of this 40-mile circle has tributary to it within a ten-mile radius or a 20-mile radius, a 30-mile radius or a 40-mile radius as many diversified resources as Medford has within the corresponding radius.
    Now you say, "Where is this town?" Possibly it might be best to let this same commercial club tell you in their own language where their town is to be found. First of all, it is in what is known as the Rogue River Valley, in southwestern Oregon. In a very attractive booklet sent out by this commercial club, in speaking of the Rogue River Valley, they say: "It is a fair as the garden of the Lord." They tell you that it lies between the verdure-clad, gold-seamed Siskiyous and the timbered slopes and snowy sentinels of the Cascades. Through it flows the wild, turbulent Rogue River, most beautiful of the many rivers of the West, wasting more power than Niagara has in its tumbling course to the sea. Around this beautiful valley string range upon range of mighty forest-clad hills, and across its broad acres extend mile upon mile of the choicest commercial orchards. Upon this picturesque and sunshine-showered valley of the Rogue, Nature has showered her bounties with a wanton hand, and we who live in this pleasant valley where gaily slants the sun, where hills beckon in garb of green and gold, where the streams murmur with laughter, and myriad fruit trees exhale their fragrance, we know of no place so attractive and so alluring.
    This valley has an area of about 3000 square miles, or just about as large as the states of Delaware and Rhode Island combined, and right in the heart of the valley is the bustling, thriving, wide-awake commercial city of Medford that we want to tell you something about.
    Medford is located about halfway between San Francisco and Portland. It is in the center of a vast agricultural, horticultural and mining section. It has a population of a little over 8000, to be exact, 8840 according to the 1910 census. This little city of 8000 has the distinction of having made a greater percentage of gain between the years of 1900 to 1910 than any other city in the United States, excepting Oklahoma City, Medford's gain having been 393½ during the ten years.
    Now, there are a great many things that we would like to tell you about this wonderful little city: In fact, it seems that one could write a volume about it, but there are just a few things that we are going to take space to tell you, but these things are so astounding that it will make you stop and think. For instance, this little city spent over $1,000,000 during the two years ending December 31, 1910, for street paving, cement sidewalks, sewers and city water mains. Now, just think as you read these astounding statements, that you are not reading of a great city of hundreds of thousands population, but of a little city of 8000 population, possibly not nearly as large as the town in which you are living. During the year 1910 the city of Medford spent over $5,000,000 for business blocks and residences.
    Now, just stop and think what that means. Why, there are many towns of 8000 population that could be purchased outright for a great deal less than $5,000,000. It has magnificent business houses and residences to show for it, and at the time you are reading this there are probably anywhere from 300 to 500 dwellings contracted for.
    There is at the present time being erected a $100,000 hospital, a $120,000 hotel and another $100,000 hotel, Congress has authorized the expenditure of $110,000 for the erection of a government building, and a magnificent library, two splendid public school buildings and numerous business blocks are either now under construction or will be soon. So we might continue telling you of the almost unbelievable accomplishments of this little city.
    Some time ago the writer had the pleasure of visiting this city, and one of the business men took him to an observatory on top of a building overlooking the valley and pointed out these improvements costing millions upon millions of dollars, and it seemed almost miraculous that such improvement could be brought about in a town of this size in so short a time.
    But now you will want to know how they do it. Possibly you will say your town is as large, if not larger, than Medford, but you have not yet accomplished as great things as this town seems to have accomplished. So you ask how they did it. Well, here is the way they did it: They did it by boosting. Every person you meet in Medford is a booster. Every man, woman and child you see is simply bubbling over with enthusiasm. Every business man you meet on the street will stop you in the street, if you give him half a chance, and tell you something about their wonderful town and this great Rogue River Valley country.
    Why, as your train pulls into the little city, one of the very first things that attracts your attention is a magnificent booth where are on display the year-around samples of the various crops, fruits, grains, vegetables, as well as a display of minerals, ores, etc. This building in itself is interesting and well worth the time of the traveler to stop off between trains to see. This is one method the people of Medford have of letting the world know that they are in existence. They talk their town; they tell about the great advantages to be found there.
    While the writer was standing on the platform ready to board the train leaving Medford, a very amusing, yet meaning, little incident came to his notice. This train stopped for a few minutes, possibly five minutes. Thus waiting, a passenger stepped down out of the Pullman car and approached a native business man of Medford and asked in a very pleasant way: "Mr., what city is this?" The Medfordite turned a fierce glare upon the inquisitor and said: "Do you ask me what city this is?" and continued: "Why, there are only three cities on the Pacific coast, San Francisco, Medford and Portland; THIS IS MEDFORD!" and the stranger, seeing the joke, smiled and remarked: "Why, certainly, I should have known that." This shows the spirit of the people of the town. They are not backward in telling you that their town is Medford. You are not permitted to leave the town with the impression that you are leaving any other town. No, sir, it is Medford, and they want you to know it, and they want you to know it so well that you never can forget it.
    The governor of the state of Oregon set aside the date of March 31st, which was to be known as "Colonist Day." On this day every man, woman and child is expected to write to some friend outside of the state and tell them something of their wonderful state of Oregon. On this date the Commercial Club furnished every school child in Medford with literature and stationery to be used in advertising Medford to friends outside the city and state. Thus several thousand letters were mailed by the schoolchildren on that day, and during this same week the Commercial Club mailed something like 30,000 pieces of advertising literature, and they report that the returns from this source were gratifying beyond their fondest hopes. It is no uncommon thing for the Medford Commercial Club to send out from 300 to 500 pieces of advertising literature daily, especially through the season that the greatest number of tourists are expected in the West.
    So this is the way they have boosted the town. Everybody boosts, and none knock. The business men are of the real live wide-awake aggressive class. In this city of a little over 8000 population the Commercial Club has a membership of over 600. Think what that means. Six hundred live men thinking of Medford, talking for Medford and boosting it for all they are worth.
    Then, when you know all these things, you can begin to account for some of the marvelous things you find in the town. In the average city of this size you hear the general complaint that they need some sort of theater or auditorium where great crowds can assemble. Medford does not permit her citizens to feel thus, as they have a magnificent coliseum that would do justice to a city many times the size of Medford, and business men will tell you that it is one of the best investments of the city. It attracts conventions, it attracts great assemblies and draws some of the best theatrical attractions on the road.
    But the Medford Commercial Club does not depend entirely upon their own personal touch in making their town appeal to people, so they have gotten out advertising literature. This is nothing new, of course, for the commercial club of every town in the country gets out advertising literature, so in getting out their literature their aim was to get something just a little better, just a little more attractive than any other commercial club in the entire country. Whether they have succeeded in doing this we do not know, but  we do know that they have put out some very fine literature, and some time ago, in writing the president of the Commercial Club, we made the statement that one particular booklet they are sending out is the finest piece of booster literature that has ever been delivered at our office, and we wish that every business man in the United States who has the "booster bug" in this system could have one of these magnificent booklets put out by the Medford club. It is simply a masterpiece of the printers' and engravers' art, containing 64 pages and cover, in size about seven by eleven inches, printed on heavy enamel paper, the cover on an extra-heavy enamel paper of high grade. 
The photographic reproductions, of which the booklet is replete, is simply beyond description. The cover plates are a reproduction of natural mountain scenery in this locality, printed in the natural colors. Then as one turns through the booklet he finds reproductions of some of the most magnificent mountain scenery, forests of stately pines, clear mountain streams, dashing cataracts, great expanses of orchards where the trees are breaking under their load of delicious fruit, scenes showing the laborer preparing the soil, planting trees, gathering the crops, vegetables, and so on. They have not forgotten to show some of the mine scenes, great caves and caverns and other things of this nature that are of intense interest to the average individual. Then the city is pictured, bird's-eye view, street scenes, palatial dwellings, schools, churches, lodge buildings, and so on; farm scenes are shown, too, and make one believe he is in the heart of the effete East instead of away out here in the Pacific Coast country, and there are hunting scenes, fishing scenes to warm the cockles of the sportsman's heart.
    And so we might continue and still only half tell the story of what these Medford boosters are doing. We delight in telling a story of this kind because it does us good to tell of the success of any man or men whose purpose is to better their town and community and country. The Medford business men are real boosters, not boomers. They are not trying for a minute to inflate valuations in their town and community. They know that would not pay, but they have the resources, they have a wonderfully rich valley surrounded by mountains and hills that are full of the richest minerals and ores, and they know that their community will be able to uphold any reputation that they can give it.
    But, after all, Mr. Reader, we do not want you to lose sight of the fact that these things have not just happened to Medford. No, sir, not for a minute should you get such an idea. We well know that many and many a man will read this article about Medford and then with a sigh say, "Oh, yes, I know that is possible for those people there at Medford, but our town is different." Yes, of course, your town is different. Possibly the people in the town are just a little different, but don't you know that no town and no city can ever become greater than the people who live in it, the people who make it.
    Now, you possibly would never have heard of Medford, Ore., if the business men in that city had had been indifferent and willing to let their town and that wonderfully rich valley lie dormant and develop as it would in natural consequence by the slow, tedious process of the years. There is many and many a town in this country that would be known that is practically unknown today, if every person living in it were aroused to a full sense of their own individual responsibility.
    So, as you read this story of Medford, do not think of it as a fairy tale, but think of it as the accomplishment of practical, modern, twentieth-century business men.
Medford Mail Tribune, June 11, 1911, page 4

Being a Recapitulation of One Oregon Town's Activities.

Medford Mail Tribune.

    Some interesting facts about Medford were brought out at the Commercial Club meeting and some were forgotten.
    There is not a vacant store room in the city, nor an empty residence. Buildings are rented before completed.
    Every line of commercial business, despite increased competition, shows material increase over a year ago.
    Business is better today than ever before--on a sounder, better and more substantial basis. The income from municipal water works is steadily diminishing the tax levy.
    Medford leads all Oregon in percentage of increase--gain in population, in postal receipts, in bank deposits, in public improvements, in buildings.
    More additional orchard acreage is being planted this year in the Rogue River Valley than in any three districts in Oregon combined ,and the commercial orchard area tributary to Medford is greater than that of any three other districts.
    The Rogue River Valley has double the acreage in apples that any other section of Oregon has, and a greater acreage in pears than all the rest of the state.
    More placer gold is being yielded by the mines of Southern Oregon this season than is produced in all other sections.
    More quartz mines are being developed this spring in Southern Oregon than for many years past.
    More sawmills are preparing to open for business this spring than in the history of the county.
    In brief, every line of activity reflects and re-echoes the prosperity of this section--by far the most promising in Oregon.
Oregonian,Portland, April 10, 1911, page 6

    Work was begun Monday upon the three-story Neff building [i.e., the Hotel Holland] at the corner of Sixth and Fir streets. The structure is to be eventually five stories in height.
    Contract will be let this week for the $100,000 Sisters of Providence hospital on Nob Hill, to be the largest and finest institution of its kind between Portland and Sacramento.
    Contract will also be let this week for the First National Bank building, to be the handsomest banking structure in the Northwest. It is of classic Grecian design, with light-colored granite front, and resembles the Bank of California at San Francisco, famed for its beauty.
    This week will see the new five-story hotel on West Main Street roofed. It will contain 100 rooms, and be first-class in every respect, the largest and best hostelry between Portland and Sacramento.
    Contracts have been let and preliminary construction is under way for the $1,000,000 power plant on the Rogue River near Prospect, to generate, when completed, 25,000 horsepower, which will be used to supply light and power to the cities of the valley and various projected manufacturing plants. It will be one of the largest power plants in the country, and speaks loudly for the faith of New York capital in the future of the Rogue River Valley.
    Go into almost any store in Medford and compare the business being done today with that done a year ago and you will find material gains, despite the increased number of stores. Business of all kinds was never better.
    The admissions to the new Natatorium offer a good index to the growth of the city. Paid dance admissions during January were 4003, during February 4869, during March 4890. Paid skating admissions were January 7140, February 7235, March 8832. Paid general admissions during January were 5911, February 6283, March 7234. This does not include ladies or minors or deadheads.
    Realty transactions show a marked increase over the past few months, and the real estate market is in much healthier condition than for the past two years. The number of real estate dealers is too large for the volume of business, but conditions are better here than in any other city in the Northwest, better than in any other city of its size anywhere.
    Thousands of acres are being planted to commercial orchards, and the next few weeks will see the planted orchard area total approximately 85,000 acres. Fruit trees are in full bloom, and prospects are excellent for a bumper crop this season.
    Prosperity seems to have taken up her permanent abode in this region of natural resources and climatic advantages, and she alluringly beckons to those seeking an ideal locality for a home.
Medford Mail Tribune, April 10, 1911, page 4

Medford Enjoying Its Full Share of the General Prosperity.
Estimated population December 1, 1901 . . . . . . . 2160
Population June 1, 1900 . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 1701
Gain in 18 months . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .   350
    Medford is the business center of the Rogue River Valley. A conservative estimate of its present population is 2150, an increase of 20 percent since the census of 1900. Its trade is very large, as a wide scope of territory east of the Cascades is tributary to it. Business has been good during the past year. Seven new business houses, five of them brick, and many residences have been built during the past year. Another flouring mill has been erected. The deposits in the city banks have grown largely. The post office receipts increased over 12½ percent during the past year, a larger gain than was reported by any other town in Southern Oregon. Immigration has increased, and large sales of real estate have taken place. Its manufactories have extended their business. Fruit and livestock shipments have multiplied. Money is plentiful. The light and water plants owned by the city have been improved and put upon a paying basis. A new academy, with a large and growing attendance, under the supervision of that well-known educator, Professor Van Scoy, has been established. The enumeration of school children has increased. The new year promises a continuance of present prosperity. And the future of Medford as the metropolis of Southern Oregon is assured.       WILLIAM S. CROWELL,
                                                                                Medford, Or.                 Mayor.

Morning Oregonian, Portland, January 1, 1902, page 47

Last revised September 9, 2016