The Hood River Glacier, Hood River, OR., September 10, 1908, page 1
BUSY SCENES ON MT. HOOD ROAD
Dee becoming Business Center
New Hotel Completed and Lumber and Fruit Industries Booming There - Many Apple Houses Being Built
With developments that are taking place at and near the
new lumber town of Dee it will soon be the busiest and most important town
in Hood River county outside of Hood River. With the recent boom in the lumber
business the big mill was started up with a large force of men last Thursday
and the scene presented there is a lively one.
Two hundred men were put to work in the mill and logging camps near Dee last week and Wm. H. Eccles, president of the company, states that it will be kept running to its full capacity just as long as weather conditions permit. As spoon as enough men and teams can be secured both sides of the mill will be put in operation and 300,000 feet of lumber turned out daily. Improvements in the working plant of the mill, include new planer with twice the capacity of any of the other machines in operation, and the lumber is being loaded direct from them into the car.
Another improvement put into use and which is an invention of Mr. Eccles is an electric loading derrick that performs wonders in the way of loading heavy timbers. With its aid a car of 12x12 timbers can be loaded in 20 to 30 minutes and big timbers picked up from the loading platform in any direction. The fine electric plant with which the plant is run and the town supplied with light and water has been found to be adaptable to placing machinery wherever it can be used to the best advantage. The company expects to ship out 4,000,000 feet of lumber during the coming months.
A fine improvement at Dee and one which is particularly appreciated by the traveling public, is a new hotel which has just been completed and opened to the public this week. The hotel contains 25 rooms and is equipped with all the improvements of a modern hostelry. A ten foot porch encircles the structure, affording ample room for entertainment of many guests out of doors during the warm weather. On the first floor is situated the office, dining room, parlor, a private dining room and a spacious kitchen with large pantries, and rooms build off the porch for the help required to run the hotel. The main dining room will seat 80 guests and a large range with all modern appliances, including hot water, insures convenience in preparing meals. Spring water for drinking purposes is provided. On the second floor are the bedrooms, well lighted and ventilated and electric lighted. Bathrooms and stationery washstands have also been put in and doors lead from the upper floor to the broad porch roof. The interior is finished in weathered oak and with its furnishings the new hotel will be one of the best appointed in the county. Later the grounds around it will be improved with lawns and several other buildings will be built to provide storage rooms. The cuisine of the hotel is under the management of Mr. and Mrs. N.H. Nelson, who have had wide experience in this line and the meals are excellent.
In addition to the development that is taking place in the little lumber town many acres of fruit land are being cleared and set to trees on the bench of land just above it. Mr. Eccles has twenty acres cleared here with five set to trees and Chas. T. Early, superintendent of the Mt. Hood railroad, has ten acres in fruit. It another tract of ten acres belonging to Ezra Monson is also set to fruit. Other tracts are being cleared up and a new county road through this section is being projected.
Traffic on the railroad from the surrounding country is fast increasing and the arrival and departure of the train at Dee presents a scene of business and hustle. Goods, farming implements, supplies and fruit trees are being hauled into the surrounding country and strangers can be seen there daily looking over the country with the intention of investing. Along the line of road many improvements in ranches can be seen and at several points considerable building is being done. At Van Horn the Apple Growers Union has the foundation and floor laid for its big apple receiving warehouse. The structure is 40x200 and will permit the shipping of many thousands of boxes of apples without the inconvenience of hauling them to town. Wilson Fike is also building an apple house near the railroad track on his place. A.I. Mason's new apple house is completed and Aug. Paasch is getting the finishing touches to an apple house that is on a switch of the railroad which is 50x120 feet. Others are also building more storage capacity to take care of their apple crop.
Improvements have been made this summer in the road bed of the railroad and its convenience for both passengers and freight is fast increasing the traffic. With the timber, fruit and other freight shipments and the contemplating extension of the road into the upper valley the new railroad will soon become one of the most important factors in the development of the industries of the county.
© Jeffrey L. Elmer