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Looking Back on October 9, 2016

Last week’s History Mystery, above, was was chosen in recognition of National Newspaper Month. It was taken June 6, 1950, and was scanned from a 4-by-5-inch negative from the archives of The Dalles Chronicle.
It shows the melting room at The Dalles Optimist.
A melting room was used in the days of letterpress printing, an early relief printing method by which many copies are produced by repeated direct impression of an inked, raised surface against sheets or a continuous roll of paper. Custom art was created using plates or blocks, which were etched in relief, the raised portion creating the printed image.


Last week’s History Mystery, above, was was chosen in recognition of National Newspaper Month. It was taken June 6, 1950, and was scanned from a 4-by-5-inch negative from the archives of The Dalles Chronicle. It shows the melting room at The Dalles Optimist. A melting room was used in the days of letterpress printing, an early relief printing method by which many copies are produced by repeated direct impression of an inked, raised surface against sheets or a continuous roll of paper. Custom art was created using plates or blocks, which were etched in relief, the raised portion creating the printed image.



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Terray Harmon, Laura Commini, Carolyn Homes, Gary Conley and Karl Vercouteren contributed to this report. Last week’s History Mystery, above, was scanned from a black-and-white negative from the archives of The Dalles Chronicle. Information on the envelope reads, “Vogt block demolition, 1967.” The building was located at the corner of Second and Washington streets downtown The Dalles, and following the deconstruction was, for many years, a large hole surrounded by a board fence. Today it serves as a parking lot for J. C. Penney’s. Local historian Karl Vercouteren wrote it was called the Chapman Block. The Donnell Drug Store was at the Second and Washington corner. The building itself dated back to the 1880s. Maximillian Vogt built the Chapman Block (named after his sister, Phillippine Chapman) and the Vogt Block (one block to the east) after he sold his mercantile business on First Street. The business district was moving to Second Street so he invested the proceeds and built the two structures. Each had commercial spaces on the ground floor and offices and apartments upstairs. Vogt himself moved into an apartment in the Chapman Block and lived there until his death in 1911. There are still mysteries surrounding the Vogt properties, Vercouteren added. “Vogt continued to buy property in the expanding downtown and replaced old wooden residences and businesses with new brick buildings. These included the Morin Printing Building and a similar building next to it at Third and Washington. While the buildings were under construction Vogt was encouraged to add a large theater to his project. “The Vogt Opera House was built behind the Washington Street structures, where the Chronicle offices are now located. It opened in January 1890, burned in the big fire of 1891, was rebuilt and hosted traveling troupes and locally-produced entertainment through 1916. “The Opera House, also known as The Vogt Grand Theatre, was a major community institution. “We have no photo of the Opera House other than an after-the-fire photo in the Pioneer Collection. It shows a pile of bricks and a few standing walls before the rebuild.” Anyone with a photo of “The Vogt” in its glory years is encouraged to contact Vercouteren via email at kjverc@gmail.com or The Dalles Chronicle at mgibson@thedalleschronicle.com. And a further mystery: Maximillian Vogt was somewhat of a recluse. The Pioneer Collection has photos of Max Vogt, but they are photos of Maximillian’s nephew who was named after him. Does anyone have a photo of Maximillian? Vercouteren became interested in “The Vogt” through the recent art installation in the Morin Printing Building and the mini-concert of music performed at the Opera House. He is also trying to track down photos for a program at the Original Courthouse next February. “Please check dusty albums or cigar boxes of old photos for the theatre and the man who built it,” he said.

20 years ago – 1996

PHOENIX – A manmade flood through the Grand Canyon this spring helped restore its ecosystem, bolstering claims by environmentalists that the government should mimic Mother Nature in managing the nation’s dams. New scientific studies have concluded that the weeklong flood in March helped revive natural habitats along the Colorado River. The studies, done by more than 100 scientists, will be released Wednesday by Interior Secretary Bruce Babbitt at a news conference here. The 34 separate studies show the manmade flood returned nutrient-rich sediment to the river, reviving old beaches and creating new ones. The flood also scoured old vegetation out of backwater canyons, making room for endangered fish to breed, and restored several major rapids to the river.

The child watched as his belongings were stuffed into a garbage bag to move him into foster care. Then he made a heartwrenching statement: “I may as well crawl in there too, along with all the rest of the garbage.” When Sandy Sargeant, manager of the volunteer program of the state Department of Human Resources (DHR), heard that story, she vowed, “If there’s anything I can do, no kid is going to be moved with a garbage bag.” And Sargeant recently found help in her mission from an unlikely quarter: local citizens who are court-ordered to perform community service. Now, a group of community service clients who are disabled or lack transportation are sewing, crocheting and knitting a variety of items needed by the children, the elderly and other clients of Sargeant’s DHR program.

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A photo in the Discovery Center collection, donated by Gladys Seufert, shows a parade going east on Second Street, viewed from Second and Court Streets. The Snipes and Kinnersly / Opera House building is the one with the “June 12” sign painted on the side. Below is what is believed to be the Opera House on Second Street, about where the Recreation building is today.

40 years ago – 1976

DALLAS (UPI) – President Ford today signed a “proclamation” restricting the amount of foreign beef which can be imported into the United States, a White House spokesman said. Press Secretary Ron Nessen said Ford signed the proclamation aboard Air Force One en route to Dallas from Lawton, Okla. He declined to immediately release additional details. In a private meeting at Lawton with about 50 cattlemen from Oklahoma, Texas and Kansas, Ford was pressed Friday night for some indication whether he would impose the beef quotas on the 14 countries which export to the United States – an action that democratic presidential candidate Jimmy Carter has said is long overdue.

LISBON, Portugal (UPI) – Balloonist Ed Yost today broke a 63-year-old ballooning endurance record in his “Silver Fox” helium balloon by spending more than 78 hours in the air during his attempted crossing of the Atlantic. At 9:10 a.m. EDT Saturday, Yost broke the record for balloon hours in the air set by H. Kaulen of Germany in 1913. An American airline pilot who spoke with the balloonist Saturday while flying to Lisbon said Yost must “turn the corner” on a low pressure system off Portugal before swinging northeast over Europe. “He’s in good spirits: his spirits couldn’t be better,” said Harry Repak, a Trans World Airlines co-pilot.

60 years ago – 1956

WASHINGTON (UP) – The government is planning a rocket-powered research airplane that will fly well over 4,000 miles an hour, it was learned exclusively today. It may be ready to fly in about two years. Designated the X15, the spectacular little craft is expected to reach altitudes well above 200,000 feet, or more than 38 miles.

PORTLAND (UP) – Columbia river fish count for Oct. 8 at Bonneville: Chinook 41, jack 32, steelhead 244, silvers 3.

City police this morning were asked to be on the lookout for apple thieves believed to be headed toward Portland with a load of 116 boxes of Winesap apples.

80 years ago – 1936

SAN FRANCISCO, Oct. 9. (UP) – The grounded freighter Ohioan’s crew was ordered to “stand by to abandon ship” today as the coast guard prepared to take all but a few of the crew of 38 ashore. Removal of the crew was ordered as officials of the American-Hawaiian Steamship company, which owns the vessel still aground near Seal rocks in San Francisco’s “graveyard of ships”, completed salvaging negotiations with Merritt and Chapman and the Haviside Co.

LONDON, Oct. 9 (UP) – Ambassador Dino Grandi of Italy, at the afternoon session of the international committee on neutrality in Spain, today accused the Soviet union of smuggling aircraft, rifles and ammunition to the Spanish government in three Soviet vessels.

Prominent on this evening’s calendar is the annual society banquet at the civic auditorium at 5:45 which will feature the address, “Medical Ethics and Dangerous Trends in Medical Practice” by Dr. Olin West of Chicago.

100 years ago – 1916

BOSTON, Oct. 9. – Reports from Nantucket and Newport indicate several submarines are causing a reign of terror. Shipwrecked seamen declare numerous U-boats are operating at America’s very door. The survivors brought stories resembling those of the Lusitania and Titanic. Shipping circles believe Germany has carefully laid plans for the interception of munitions shipments.

NEWPORT, R. I., Oct. 9. – Dripping with brine, which stood out like sweat on their steel sides from the prodigious efforts of rescuing passengers of six torpedoed merchant ships, four United States destroyers arrived here before dawn today, bringing the first stories of the European war carried to America’s doorstep.

Experiments have shown that the best conductors of lightning, placed in the order of conductivity, are metals, gas coke, graphite, solutions of salts, acids and water.



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