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<page 80>  

The 26th.  I bid my friends good-bye and took the morning train for Plainview as my folks lived there.  After resting around there a few days I went back to Portland.  Landed there in time to hear the New Year Celebration at midnight January First, 1893.  This year was not a very prosperous one as any old-timer will remember.  The camps ran on a slow-bell, them that ran atall.  Them that ran commenced closing early in the fall.  Wages were low and millions were idle throughout the whole United States.  There was very little money in circulation.  You could buy three or four times as much for a dollar as you can now but it was ten times as hard to get the dollar as it is now.  I was with Mr. Lyons and he done a regular transfer business in connection with general contracting work.  Anything that could be done with horses.  He had some hacks or horse-drawn cabs that they used for funerals and parties, weddings, what not.  He had a horse-drawn truck, a furniture wagon, some buggies and driving horses.  Us boys that worked there got $ 1.50 per day and my average was four days a week through the last four months of 1893.  He was very <page 81> kind to me at that, some of the boys fared worse than I.  One little excursion that I forgot to mention, it was in connection with the Cedar Mill at Westport which I have spoken of previously.  That machinery had been purchased by some outfit and they had went there with the intention of removing it to another location.  They had to go through a small ranch near the mill and the party that built it made arrangements for the right-of-way but failed to pay for it.  The party who purchased it knew nothing of this and they barged in there one day while he was out looking after his fish nets as that was his business.  Anyhow, they proceeded to dismantle the mill.  Jackson was the mans name and when he come back and seen what was taken place he went down and ask what was going on.  They told him they had been sent there to dismantle and move the machinery out.  He told them his bill had never been settled.  They owed him for some stum<page as well as for the right-of-way.  They tried to make him believe that was his hard luck, but Jackson was not a man you could with a Gatlin Gun much less with air.  The next morning they found two good-sized trees across <page 82> the road and Jackson there with his old Winchester and he was not making much conversation either.  They ask him what he expected them to do and he told them to stay-out of there until he was guaranteed that he would get his money.  There was some parleying among themselves and one fellow said to one of the men you will have to get a saw and Jackson said he would cut the tree and clear the road when he was sure of his money.  They tried a little more bluff.  He did not quarrel with them but he finally told them he would shoot the first man that attempted to saw that tree out.  They seen that he meant what he said and they come back to Portland and he Jackson got out an attachment and tied the machinery up.  I don’t remember who was Sheriff of Multnomah County.  It was either George Sears.  I believe that was the name or Pum Kelly.  Anyhow, they came to see Mr. Lyons about it and he ask me if I knew Mr. Jackson?  We had met when we were hauling lumber through his ranch and we had a speaking acquaintance was about all.  Mr. Lyons he had them fellows that went there to move the machinery out shut down and he will not let them move anything until he gets his money <page 83> Mr. Lyons said the sheriff is a friend of mine and he wants me to send one of my men down there to get a release signed.  Things are quiet here so if you will take them papers and get the matter straightened out it will make everybody happy.  They will appoint you as a deputy to make it legal.  I told him it would not be necessary if they would pay Mr. Jackson what they owed him.  He will sign the release.  He said you can use your own judgment about the way to work the thing out.  I asked if the sheriff knew about the bill against the former owner?  He said if he does not he surely can find out as they have access to the records.  I told him if they would make it possible for me to pay Mr. Jackson that there would be no further trouble  and in the next few days they found the information they needed and made the necessary papers and brought them over to my boss.  They told him to turn them over to any one he seen fit to send to serve them.  He called me in the office and said the papers were there and for me to take the boat next morning for Westport and handed me my transportation and the other documents <page 84> The boat left Portland at six A.M.  I was traveling light so it was a small matter to get started.  The boat was a freight and passenger and traveled slow.  We did not get to Westport until late in the evening.  I went to the hotel and registered in a few minutes.  Neal Driscoll and Mike Gorman came along and visited for a while.  I had not seen either of them for about a year and of course they wanted to know what brought me to Westport and not wishing to tip my hand I told them some other fellows and myself were looking for a logging show.  That was true but not in that locality.  Mike asked where we would sell the logs if we had them and I could not answer that one for the camps that were well established were about half capacity and we changed the subject.  I asked about all the bunch of fellows we had met when we were hauling lumber?  I found out one camp was running near Westport just below the little valley.  I think it was Jim Bremmer who owned the outfit.  Tom Redmond was the Bull-Puncher and a typical one at that.  He knew all the language that went with driving Bull teams and how to put it together.  He was a darn good fellow and a valuable <page 85> man to the camp.  I had met him about four years before that and was slightly acquainted with him.  After the other business was attended to I went and we had a short visit.  I left the hotel early the next morning and went to Jacksons’ Ranch.  He had gone down to Driscoll Slough and would be back 9 A.M> I went to the boathouse and waited for him.  He came along on time.  The people in the Tidewater District have regular habits.  They travel with the tide.  He looked me over and recognized me in a few minutes.  We shook hands and sat down and talked for a while on general topics.  He finally ask how I happened to be in that vicinity?  That was what I wanted and told him there was some papers they wanted him to sign.  His eyes sparkled and his face turned red.  He looked me right in the eye and said I will not sign any paper until my money is in sight or guaranteed.  I asked him to read the papers and he did so and handed them back without comment.  I asked if he had a bill made out showing the amount of  his claim against the former owner of the mill?  He said no but he had an itemized record at his house <page 86> of all the amounts due him.  They had given me a list taken from the statement they had in Portland and we went to the house and made our comparison and it checked out amazingly close.  I asked him if he was satisfied as far as we had went and he said yes.  I had a short agreement drawn-up for him to sign whereby he would clear the trees off the road that he had felled across it to stop them and also let them pass over his property without further interference as long as there was no unnecessary damage done.  I asked him if he would sign these two if he had his money?  He said yes but there must be some limit to the time they wanted.  I told him they might want 30 days and he agreed.  I wrote it in the agreement and he signed and I handed him his check.  We talked a short time and he said there was no need of any trouble in the first place.

All he ask for was what belonged to him and he said they were going though his property without permission and when he fell the tree across the road that meant, stay out!  He said, I do not have many years to live anyhow and I <page 87> just made up my mind to live them all out at one time if them fellows tried to go through by force.  I would rather die fighting for my right than let anyone run over me just because I am getting old.  He said he had always been able to take care of himself.  When I looked into those cool piercing eyes I was willing to take his word for it.  He was a man and his word meant everything to him.  After telling him goodbye I walked down the bank of the slough to Driscoll landing close to where it emptied into the Columbia and waited for the boat.  Them small boats stopped at every cow shed along the way and took on freight and wood, all of them burned wood .  The boat came along early in the evening and I was glad to get started to Portland.  We moved Mitchell and Lewis Co> implements from the West side to the East side and that job fell to me.  We used a truck for that job.  They had quite a large stock and some buggies.  Other highly polished equipment had to be handled carefully.  It took several days to finish the job and fall they took a lot of the same stuff back to the old Mechanics Pavilion <page 88>.  It was near where the Multnomah Stadium is now located.  They held a mechanics exposition and fat stock show every fall for several years and usually drew a large crowd.  I knew some farmers near Molalla that took stock there to exhibit several times.  Different kinds of vegetables and grains.  The latest improved farm implements.  Altogether it made an interesting exhibit.  It was getting along late in the June and I was going to spend the Fourth of July in Linn and Lane Counties visiting my folks  and some friends> There was one more job moving a piledriver engine and the other equipment that went with it for Packett and Smith, local contractors.  They built several tunnels and docks on both sides of the river.  We did a lot of work for them.  We finished up a few days before the Fourth and I went away on my vacation.  The first ones to visit were my folks and then my future wife and her folks who lived in Coberg.  Arrived there July Second and the Third we went to Eugene where I hired a nice Bay team and buggie and we went back to Linn County so she could visit with my folks.  My oldest was about her age <page 89>.  We were up early the next morning and three couple of us took in the celebration at Albany, Oregon.  It was quite a warm day and there was a large crowd.  We stood in line a long time before we got anything to eat.  After lunch we left Albany and drove to Lebanon and on to Waterloo as they were having a big open-air or platform dance.  They had a big feed at midnight and when I say feed it means just that.  We did not leave the dance until daybreak.  Everything was lovely and the goose hung high as the old-timer would say.  About one o’clock A.M.  a couple of fellows had some kind of misunderstanding and started a roughhouse and of course that attracted everybody’s attention for a few minutes but quiet was soon restored and the dance proceeded without any further disruption.  My personal opinion is that the boys had drunk too much red lemonade which made them feel a might dizzy.  The cop threw them in a little two by four jail.  He left them there a short time and let them out and they were very docile.  We went from Waterloo to my folks who lived near Plainview.  Breakfasted and rested there all day.  Next morning we started for Coberg where my lady friend lived.  When we arrived <page 90> there my time was about up on the team as I had promised to have them back on the Sixth of July.  I gave Jud Skinner $1.50 to take the team from Coberg to Eugene.  He told me many years after that it was the best pay he ever received up to that time.  He became well known as an employee of the Booth-Kelly Lumber Company of Eugene.  At the time he had done this chore for me he was just a big kid and having a good time around the little sawmill town.  The next morning I started for Portland.  There was very little doing there when I got back.  The next morning the boss told me to take the horse and buggy and see if I could collect some bad bills that were long past due.  Handed me a sheaf of bills big enough to choke a mule.  He said some of these bills are almost a year old.  We are badly in need of money so see what you can do.  Use your own system as all conventional methods have failed.  I had met and in fact was personally acquainted with some of these customers and was surprised that they were behind with their accounts.  Was agreeably surprised when some of them after a long delay were ready to help by paying a part of them and promised to carry on until about <page 91> half of them did pay out and the others paid in part only.  So that was life in 1893.  One of the worst panics so far as I am personally concerned that the U.S.  has had in the last Seventy years.  The first that I can remember anything about was in 1873.  My father after putting in his crop saddled up his riding horse and buckled on his six-shooter as the called the Colt revolver.  Most everybody carried a shooting iron for a while after the Civil War.  Especially where he was going.  He told mother he was going to the cattle country in Texas.  The Comanche Indians were hostile in that part of Texas then so a gun was a part of your equipment.  He helped herd and stand watch at night.  They had two light skimishes with the Indians.  They lost some horses.  Father lost one of his as each man had two horses to use.  He helped bring quite a large herd up the trail to Abilene, Kansas and then came home.  I was six years old and cannot remember much about what he said about the trip.  Two things that linger in my memory, one of them was he picked me up and set me on his horse and walked away and said hold on now and you will be riding alone.  He spoke to the horse and he followed my father around the yard <page 92>.  The other thing that remained in my mind was the rattlesnake skin trimming stuck around over his saddle.  My mother scolded him about that, but he said it was not his idea.  One day just before they finished the drive one of the young fellows borrowed his saddle in the afternoon and did not get back until late at night and while the young fellow was riding he seen a large rattler coiled in the trail.  He shot it and tool the skin and cut strips and stuck on dads saddle.  By the next day when he found out it had dried and stuck like glue and so he brought it home that way.  Three years later we started West.  Before leaving we had a sale and that saddle brought more that it was worth because it was stuck-up with snakeskin.  Back to my story.  1893 The latter part of the year was worse than the first half, hardly doing any business.  Money was scarce and there were millions tramping through the country looking for work of any kind.  They would come to the barn and ask Mr.Lyons to let them wash a buggy or wash and oil a buggie harness just for something to eat.  He being a sympathetic man would give them enough to get something to eat.  Send them on their way.  We all gave what we could but that was but little and it was bad business to <page 93> be on a dark street around North Portland at night.  The Coxeyites started forming their army that fall for their march to Washington which all the old timers well remember.  We had a few odd jobs.  A few funerals now and then, and a few moving jobs where people could not pay their rent and we did not always get paid for moving them either.  The dollar buye much more than today 1946 but the hard part of it was getting the almighty dollar.  They were almost as scarce as frog hair around there.  About the end of the year I hung onto all the money I could get because there was a very fine young woman had promised to by my bride.  The wedding was set for 31, October 1893, and there was no honorable way to cancel that agreement even if I had desired to do so.  We were married and went to Portland about the first of November, 1893, and we lived there until 1898.  I was away considerable of the time.  We handled quite a lot of piling and telephone and telegraph poles and tight poles also.  In the spring of 1894, Mr.Lyons took the contract to deliver pipe for the new Bull Run water system from Mt. Tabor to the city Park.  That with what other work that we picked up kept us fairly busy the rest of the was some vacant property, that is there was no improvement between the Steel Bridge and the Morrison Street Bridge on the East Side.  So they made camp along the river and were under Military Guard for some time.  Finally they were disbanded.  After Coxey served about twenty days in jail for stepping on the grass in Washington, D.C., he gave-up the idea of marching to Washington at the head of an unemployed army 100,000 strong.  So that finished the Coxey Army for Portland. We worked on the pipe hauling when we had pipe.  We would catch-up with the Oswego Foundry occasionally and have to wait for a few days.  The June flood made everybody sit-up and take notice.  We could use only one bridge.  The Hawthorne was the only one you could cross the river on.  Charles Smith was Street Commissioner and he came to the barn and said he <page 95> wanted some team to work all night at the East end of the Hawthorne Bridge.  He said we will have to use railroad iron to ballast the bridge approach or it will be gone by morning.  It was a plank road then.  The water was slushing through the cracks between the planks before we delivered the first loads of steel.  We begain in the lowest place first and that way we kept it from floating away.  There was no current in the river.  It was smooth as glass except when a boat would pass or a gust of wind would blow to create a ripple.  There was a young fellow by the name of William Grose or Gross, do not recall which is correct.  Anyhow he had a candy store on the Northwest corner of Front and Morrison Street and water came up so high he had to move out.  The boss told me to take the furniture wagon and go to his rescue.  When I got there he had put a lot of parcels up on the counter and the water was half way to his knees in the store and in the street it was belly deep on the horses and the water was slushing through the bottom of the wagon.  We took some of the shelves and some boxes and made a false bottom for the wagon to keep the stock of goods from getting wet <page 96>.  We had been hauling lumber from Inman and Poulsons Mill to Taylor-Young Company who had a large warehouse on Fourth and Davis Street.  They had a large stock of lime and cement stored there.  They used the lumber to make trusses to raise the lime and cement up out of the water.  When the water came up to the bottom of the collars on the team I was driving, that was deep enough for me and I told the man there that was my last trip.  He said, your boss will have something to say about that.  My answer was he could say what the team would do, but as for myself I would not drive a team where they might be seriously injured and that was final.  Some of us went back but it was too much risk, the water raising very fast.  They had to quit before they used all the lumber we delivered.  My wife was away visiting her folks for the first time since our marriage and did not realize how high the water was so she sent me a letter just the day before she started so there was nothing to do but make arrangements to meet her.  The train had to stop above Hawthorne Bridge.  I told Mr. Lyons to send someone to bring her home and was she surprised to see the water every place and it gave quite <page 97> a thrill for her and she was a little bit timid of a few days.  We had considerable extra work of one kind and another after the flood subsided.  There was considerable damage done.  We finally settled down to the pipe hauling job and were fairly busy the rest of the year of 1894.  A fair year only for business and on the 20th of September 1894, our first baby was born.  We named him Floyd Harold Blackburn and I will speak of him at different times as I proceed with this biography as we worked together in the logging camps about 30 years before I retired.  More about him later.  1895, Business was running on a slow bell yet and we had some basements to dig and some street work and we hauled lumber for Inman and Poulsons mill and also some sand and gravel, but all together it was a poor year.  Money remained scarce.  Everything in general was quiet.  Wages were at low ebb.  We were getting $1.50 a day when you worked and the days were long.  You took care of your team.  Just as well we had nothing else to do.  No use going across the river without money.  If you felt like spending a nickel you could go down to the Barrel House  in North Portland and get two glasses of beer for a nickel if you could get up to the bar.  The place was full most of the time and some peculiar characters would show up there  <page 98> occasionally.  There were gamblers, pick pockets, and people of all nations.  So it was a regular Cosmopolitan aggregation.  Most any time you happened in there it was about the same.  All through the panic of 93 there was many that looked like the running gears of an ill spent life and a good place to study human nature.  Portland had a Fourth of July Celebration and a parade.  I had to drive a pair of buckskin horses hitched to a new oil delivery wagon.  The wagon belonged to Jim Duley and he was keeping his outfit at the barn where I was working.  He spent a lot of time decorating his two wagons and had one good looking team and the other was not much for looks, so he hired this span of buckskins.  They had run away a few times and he wanted a man to drive them and the boss ask me to go.  I needed the money so took the jog and came back tired.  They fixed giant firecrackers by the thousands and those small torpedoes by the hundreds.  The team was wet with sweat and nervous as a bowl of jello.  My arms ached trying to hold them in the line of the parade.  I sure was glad when they gave orders to disband.  That night they had a big fireworks down about where Vaughn field is located now.  It was a big success, had a large crowd.  I do not recall  <page 99> a single accident.  We took a furniture wagon and some friends and watched the fireworks from a short distance.  The rest of the year was quiet, not much new development.  My folks moved from LInn County to Clackamas and rented a small farm in the vicinity of Colton in the Kickapoo Neighborhood about 15 miles South and East of Oregon City.  They were getting along very well for poor folks, but one day father and two of my brothers went to Oregon City on some business and one brother was going to Portland.  Father and the younger brother started home and the team was quite lively and the street rough at that time.  The wagon made a lot of noise so they did not hear the train come from the North and as they arrived at the railroad crossing on Seventh Street, at at the foot of Singer Hill they had a collision and father was instantly killed and the young brother received injuries from which he never fully recovered.  12, July, 1896, The team and wagon and harness were entirely destroyed.  They were running a special from Oregon City to Gladstone.  They were having a meeting there and the special consisted of a locomotive and one coach and had no air.  We proved that in the lawsuit that followed the <page 100> accident.  <continued>

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