The Oregonian, Portland, OR., June 11, 1889, page 3
EARLY HISTORY OF HOOD RIVER
The First Settlement at that Place - Old Coe Donation Land Claim - The Eliot Glacier.
Hood River at last has a newspaper of its own styled
the Glacier, and now the outside world will learn something about that delightful
valley so celebrated for its fruit, healthfulness and fine scenery. The Glacier
gives the following concerning the early history of Hood river.
The first settlement at this place was made by Mr. McLaughlin in 1852. The following winter being a severe one and Mr. McLaughlin losing all his cattle, he moved to The Dalles. The next settler was Nathaniel Coe and wife Mary W. and four children, of boys, of whom the eldest L.W., was one of the founders of the O.S.N. Co., having built with Mr. Thompson the "Umatilla" which went over the Cascade rapids by accident; Charles who died in 1872; E.F. who is at present living here with his brother, the youngest of the family, Captain H.C. Coe. With the Coe family came William Jenkins, who was drowned in the Columbia at the mouth of Hood river, together with his son and James Laughlin in 1865, and James Benson now of The Dalles and wife, and A.C. Phelps also of The Dalles settled here.
During early days when the trail along the river was about the only route from Portland to Walla Walla, it was a welcome stopping place. The Coe donation land claim, on which the town is built, is one of the oldest this side of the mountains. Just now the town is becoming justly famous as a summer resort. The heat is pleasantly moderated by the cool breezes which sweep up the Columbia from the ocean, and the surrounding mountains, with the big peaks of Hood and Adams, crowned with everlasting snows.
The building of a commodious hotel near the Mount Hood glaciers, which is now progressing rapidly, will furnish the only thing needed to make the Hood river country a paradise for tourists and sportsmen -- good accommodations. The scenery cannot be equaled in the northwest, and in accessibility the Hood river glaciers discount all others. Three hours' ride by rail from Portland to Hood river, and from four to five hours staging over a magnificent mountain road, bring the traveler from the heat of the city to the region of perpetual snow.
© Jeffrey L. Elmer