The Infamous Black Bird Southern Oregon History, Revised

Medford News 1933

Medford-related news items from 1933. Also see descriptions of Medford and Jackson County for this year.

    Orchardists who have some apples left that they haven't disposed of can make a good-sized payment on their taxes with them, Hamilton Patton, director of relief work for Jackson County, announced today.
    The relief organization is prepared to take a large quantity of marketable apples at 30 cents a sack, which will be traded to Klamath Falls farmers for potatoes. The potatoes will be used in the relief commissary here, and the apples will be used in the Klamath country.
    "Thirty cents a sack isn't much for apples," Patton said, "but we are getting the potatoes at 30 cents a sack, and some apple grower here can do a lot towards paying off his taxes."
    Growers with apples are requested to see or call Patton.
Medford Mail Tribune, February 2, 1933, page 1

Orchardists Pay Taxes in Apples
    MEDFORD, Oreg., Feb. 6 (AP)--Hamilton Patton, director of Jackson County relief work, announced today that orchardists will be allowed to trade in apples in payment of taxes at the rate of 30 cents a sack.
Calexico Chronicle, Calexico, California, February 6, 1933, page 1

    MEDFORD, Ore., Feb. 27. (U.P.)--The asserted theft of 10,000 ballots brought a flareup of "civil war" in Jackson County today.
    A newspaper editor was horsewhipped by a woman.
    Sheriff Gordon Schermerhorn, Mayor Walter Jones of Rogue River, a deputy sheriff, and two other men were under arrest.
    County Judge Earl Fehl, openly predicting arrest, arranged a $5000 bond.
    More arrests were promised by Police Chief Clatous McCredie.
    All was the outgrowth of a bitter fight being waged by Sheriff Schermerhorn to retain office. The other half of the fight was led by his predecessor, Ralph G. Jennings, who campaigned as an independent after losing the nomination to Schermerhorn. Jennings claims he won the general election but that Schermerhorn destroyed the ballots, preventing a recount. The arrests followed.
    The topsy-turvy state of affairs was climaxed when Mrs. Henrietta B. Martin sought out Leonard Hall, youthful editor of the Jacksonville Miner, and flogged him with a horsewhip. Mrs. Martin, president of the "good government congress," a supporter of Sheriff Schermerhorn, resented a story Hall had written.
    Hall said he would not prosecute.
Imperial Valley Press, El Centro, California, February 27, 1933, page 1

Former Riverside Citrus Grower Held in Shooting
    Llewellyn A. Banks, who yesterday shot a constable to death in Medford, Ore., was until three years ago a prominent resident and citrus grower of Riverside. He still owns a packing house near Arlington and at one time sued the California Fruit Growers Exchange for $1,000,000, charging an attempt to restrict his business. He is a member of a family well known throughout the Southern California fruit district.
(By United Press)
    MEDFORD, Ore., March 16.--Medford's three-year political feud led to bloodshed today when Llewellyn A. Banks, former publisher of the Medford Daily News and leader of the insurgents, shot and killed Constable George Prescott.
    The shooting occurred when Prescott went to Banks' palatial (mortgaged) home to arrest the eccentric publisher and fruit grower on a grand jury indictment.
    When Prescott stepped to his door, Banks made good his oft-repeated threat to shoot the first officer who attempted to arrest him again.
    An hour elapsed before the publisher was arrested. He submitted readily.
    Capt. Lee Bown entered the mansion after state troopers surrounded it.
    Banks put on his coat and hat.
    "I'm ready," he said.
    As he left under Bown's escort he walked to a spot near the front stoop where Prescott's body still lay, looked at it without speaking, then rejoined Bown.
    Banks said that if he is brought to trial he will plead insanity "and would never hang."
    The Medford News was sold at the Jackson County courthouse here yesterday on a mortgage foreclosure.
    Banks' business manager, J. A. Ladieu, was in the county jail charged with participating in the same ballot theft on which Constable Prescott attempted to arrest Banks this morning.
    The stolen ballots had been ordered up for recount and investigation in a recent election. The office of sheriff was in dispute.
    The Banks home at 1000 West Main street is a luxurious residence. Banks had moved his own office from the second floor of the Medford Daily News building to his home.
    He had his desk in an alcove leading from the large living room of the house, and from which he commanded a view of the entrance.
    A loaded rifle was leaning against the desk at all times. On an instance three weeks ago in which a United Press representative called at the house, Banks asserted he would "shoot to kill" at the next attempt to serve a warrant upon him.
    He asserted he was being victimized by a "political gang."
    The recently formed "good government congress" of Jackson County, in which he was the leading spirit and which has been holding a series of mass meetings, recently petitioned the United States Senate and Gov. Julius Meier of Oregon for an investigation of local political conditions, asserting that "legal lawlessness" prevailed.
    Banks came to Oregon three years ago from Riverside, California, where he was a large-scale independent citrus grower.
    He became interested in the pear lands of Southern Oregon, gradually disposed of his orange groves in California and moved to the northern state.
    Two years ago he purchased the Medford Daily News from Carl Sweigert, Dan Bowerman and Lee Tuttle, and began an editorial attack upon the alleged "political gang" of Jackson County.
    He ran for the United States Senate from Oregon, and was defeated.
San Bernardino Sun, March 17, 1933, page 4

    MEDFORD, Ore.--After he had been fined many times for drunkenness, Charles Jessimant, of this city, who appeared before City Judge Curry for the same offense, was sentenced to attend Sunday school regularly.
The Key West Citizen, Key West, Florida, May 20, 1933, page 3

Ask Receivership for Growers Exchange, Inc.
    Medford, Ore., May 26.--At a meeting of the Growers Exchange, Inc., held last week it was decided to ask for a receivership for the concern. The receivership was asked by the First National Bank of Medford, which holds a mortgage on the packing plant. Dr. George B. Dean is president of the Growers Exchange, and Myron E. Root has been actively at its head as manager.
The Chicago Packer, May 27, 1933, page 17

    The "big" carnival at 11th and Fir streets has all the earmarks of an "Our Gang Comedy"--fortune telling, sideshows and pink lemonade.
"Town Briefs," The Tattler, Medford, June 16, 1933, page 1

    G. R. Wilson received little credit for his work years ago for planting the trees in what is now called the city park. Mr. Wilson hauled the trees in by team and placed them in the potato patch, as it was called at that time. Many people enjoy the shade and beauty of the park during the summer months.
    Pumping gold out of the Rogue River is an experiment to be tried by Seattle men who are assembling equipment at Almeda. The most modern gold-saving devices will be used, and the plant will be equipped to handle 75 yards of gravel per hour.
    Since the new pavement is in between Medford and Central Point, you can fairly sail along--no sharp corners and bumpy pavement. The tourist should enjoy coming into Medford.
"Town Briefs," The Tattler, Medford, July 7, 1933, page 1

    An interesting and unique display of "Kurok," a specific remedy for the treatment of poison oak, is in the front window of the Chamber of Commerce building. The Grace Laboratories, a local concern, 205 Liberty Building, are manufacturers and distributors for this remedy.
The Tattler,
Medford, July 7, 1933, page 4

Outlook Good for Pears at Medford.
    Medford, Ore., July 21.--The Medford pear season will follow the rule established by other fruit crops on the Pacific coast this year in that it will be about two weeks late in getting started. Growers and shippers in the district are not expecting harvesting to start until about August 15. The crop is in good shape with the fruit coming on nicely. According to early July estimates, there will be 800 to 850 cars of Bartletts packed in the district, 700 cars of Bosc, 800 cars of d'Anjous, 250 cars of Winter Nelis, 165 cars of Comice and 25 cars of miscellaneous varieties. The Bartletts will be the first to move, followed by the Bosc and d'Anjous.
The Chicago Packer, July 22, 1933, page 13

University Gets Indian Collection
    EUGENE, Ore., Aug. 1. (U.P.)--A valuable collection of Indian relics has been presented to the University of Oregon Museum by Dr. L. S. Cressman, professor of anthropology.
    The collection includes portions of 16 skeletons of primitive Indians, together with 22 obsidian knives and other weapons. Most of them were excavated from a mound in the Gold Hill district of Jackson County.
Imperial Valley Press, El Centro, California, August 1, 1933, page 5

Peach, Apricot Growers at Medford Organizing.
    Medford, Ore., Aug. 4.--Organization of peach and apricot growers is under way here, and it is believed that a strong organization will be perfected which will act as a centralized marketing agency for the many small growers who at the present time are more or less at a loss as to how to market their fruit.
    The disastrous experience which cherry growers have just gone through is causing small fruit growers to organize. With canners practically refusing to handle cherries, and the cherry crop showing almost a total loss to many growers, it is felt that urgent measures are necessary or other small fruit crops will suffer the fate of the cherry crop.
The Chicago Packer, August 5, 1933, page 39

Myron Root & Co. New Firm at Medford, Ore.
    Medford, Ore., Aug. 4.--Announcement has been made here of the formation of a new fruit company in Medford to be known as Myron Root & Co., Inc., with offices and packing house located in the former plant of the Growers Exchange, Inc., 11th and Fir streets. The company, organized to pack and market Rogue River Valley pears and apples, was incorporated for $10,000. Myron Root, manager, has had 20 years' experience in packing and selling fruit from this valley. He was formerly connected with the Growers Exchange, Inc., a cooperative association.
The Chicago Packer, August 5, 1933, page 40

    Confident hopes that the NRA will take action to compel canners and other buyers of Bartlett pears to pay a minimum of $25 per ton for No. 1 grade pears was expressed here by Paul Scherer, general manager of the Southern Oregon Sales, Inc., who has returned from a conference of pear growers and shippers held at Spokane.
    First picking of Bartlett pears will commence in the Rogue River Valley districts about August 15. Packing houses now have crews working getting in shape for the tonnage which will soon commence rolling, and growers and shippers are feeling quite optimistic over the outlook.
    Articles of incorporation for Alta Vista Packing Company were filed this week here. C. A. Knight, Walter E. Flinn and H. K. Hanna are named as incorporators. The purpose of the corporation will be to pick, harvest, clean, pack, ship, export, import and market fruit.
    Incorporation papers were filed here last week for a new fruit packing and shipping company to be known as Myron Root & Company, Inc., with the following named persons as incorporators: Myron E. Root, Rawles Moore and Marjorie Marshall. Myron E. Root has long been identified with the fruit industry in the Rogue River Valley, and for the past few years has been manager of the Growers Exchange, Inc., and also has shipped fruit from Medford under his own name. The new concern will operate from the packing house plant formerly used by the Growers Exchange.
The Chicago Packer, August 12, 1933, page 13

Shipping Pears in Passenger Baggage Cars.
    Medford, Ore., Sept. 8.--A new innovation in fruit shipments is being tried out in Medford for the first time this year in the loading of boxed pears in passenger baggage cars, each car being loaded with approximately 780 boxes. The pears are loaded the same day they are picked and shipped out of Medford on the night passenger train to Portland, arriving there the following morning, where they are put in cold storage in the Oceanic terminal, awaiting arrival of steamers for shipment to France. After unloading from the baggage cars, which are not iced, the boxed pears are immediately put under 31 degrees storage temperature, and this same temperature is maintained on board ship until the pears arrive at destination. This new plan of shipment was conceived by Raymond Reter, manager Pinnacle Packing Company, and a saving of 7¢ is effected per box over the old method of shipment.
    Packing and shipping of Bartlett pears is now on in full swing here. In order to assure a high grade pack, a number of the packing plants are combining the extra and fancy grades into one grade marked "fancy." In view of the short crop of Bartletts this year, estimated to be about one-half of normal, the packing season is going to be short, and the movement of late pears will commence next week. Cannery prices for Bartlett pears are ranging from $17.50 to $25 per ton.
The Chicago Packer, September 9, 1933, page 8

Agree Not To Pack Certain Classes of Bosc Pears.
    Medford, Ore., Sept. 22.--Action taken at a meeting of the Northwest Fruit Industries, Inc., at Portland last week will mean a cut of at least 25 percent in the Bosc pear tonnage this year, it is believed. In order to eliminate a large oversupply of pears the association agreed not to pack certain classes of Bosc in the fancy and extra fancy divisions. The meeting was attended by representatives of the industry from Washington, Oregon and Idaho.
    Bosc fancies larger than 100s and smaller than  165s and extra fancies smaller than 180s are included in the classes that will not be packed.
    Raymond Reter of Medford, chairman of the winter pear commodity committee, presided at the Portland meting.
The Chicago Packer, September 23, 1933, page 9

    Pic O Pac--Fresh deciduous fruits. Use claimed since August 10, 1928, by Pinnacle Packing Company, Inc., Medford, Ore.
"Trade Marks," The Chicago Packer, September 23, 1922, page 11

    MEDFORD, Ore.--Declaring a rattlesnake had punctured his tire, J. C. Clark of this city rolled his automobile into town with a "flat."
The Key West Citizen, Key West, Florida, October 14, 1933, page 4

    Alfred J. Weeks, long identified with the fruit industry in the Rogue River Valley as one of the principal owners of the Del Rio Orchards, [died] recently after a short illness. His death followed by a few months that of his brother, Fred J. Weeks.
The Chicago Packer, October 21, 1933, page 16

Pear Movement from Rogue River Valley.
    Medford, Ore., Nov. 3.--Pear shipments from the Rogue River Valley for the season now closing total 1,501 cars, according to figures of the local traffic association. Total shipments of pears last year were 2,112 and apples 128 carloads. To date 26 cars of apples have been shipped this season.
    Pears shipped out and in storage, according to traffic association figures, total 2,328 cars, segregated as to varieties now in storage as follows: Winter Nelis 109 cars, d'Anjous 527, Bosc 141, Comice 36, Howells five, Bartletts four.
    Harvesting of Newtown apples is now under way, but the tonnage this season is light, so it is expected that the season will be brought to a close within a few days.
The Chicago Packer, November 4, 1933, page 16

Medford Apple Shipments.
    Medford, Ore., Nov. 24.--Apple shipments from the Medford district up to date totals 49 cars. There is a considerable movement of local apples to California points by truck, which has reduced the carlot tonnage in point of figures available. The going price on these shipments is from 75 to 80¢ a box, loose packed, unwrapped, which nets the grower a small margin of profit.
The Chicago Packer, November 25, 1933, page 6

Box Shook Man in Crash.
    Medford, Ore., Nov. 24.--The United airplane crash in Portland last week in which four people were killed and four injured had its direct effort on two prominent Medford men. Floyd Hart, who was a passenger on the plane, and who was only slightly injured, is vice president and general manager of the Timber Products Company here, and is actively associated with the fruit interests on the Pacific coast, as the company he is with supplies a large part of the fruit trade with box shook and crates. Dr. William A. Coffey, nationally famous surgeon, and who was killed on the plane, was on his way to Medford to perform an operation on Dr. L. A. Salade, who has operated one of the finest pear orchards in the Rogue River Valley for many years. Dr. Salade passed away Friday after an illness of about a week's duration.
The Chicago Packer, November 25, 1933, page 16

Last revised May 31, 2023