ePub 版

mous Oro Tiro mines, in what is now Idaho. This changed the whole aspect of affairs. In the blaze of excitement, gold seekers from Oregon and California, coming up the Columbia River, paused at Walla Walla for mining outfits. By this means a home market was speedily created. Other mining regions were within a short time discovered. Cattle were

[graphic][subsumed][merged small][merged small]

driven into the pastures, wheat-fields were cultivated, and the demand for food started any number of dairies and provision stores. The miners came, in many instances, to Walla Walla for winter quarters. During the year 1862, eighty buildings were erected in the little commonplace village, on the dry, flowerless, cheerless plain, at first called Steptoeville, then Wailatpu, and finally Walla Walla. The wave of emigration brought many permanent citizens. Two daily stage lines were established between Walla Walla and Wallula, on the Columbia River, a distance of thirty

[graphic][ocr errors][merged small]

miles, and the rude vehicles were usually crowded with passengers at a fare of $5 apiece.

The year 1868 marks the first organized effort to secure a railroad as an outlet for the rapidly increasing products of the valley. The question was difficult to manage, and it was seven years before the project was brought to a successful términation. In the meantime other important towns had been founded; the landscape, for hundreds of miles, had been converted into fields of grain; and an enterprise laden with results of vast importance to all Christendom, the Northern Pacific Railway, had become a fixed fact. Presently other transportation facilities were inaugurated, and so rapidly did they take shape and strength, that the merest statistics would read like a romance. Fruit trees were first introduced into the valley by Dr. Whitman, and the orchards he planted are still productive. Peaches, pears, apples, plums, cherries, grapes, and the smaller fruits are produced with ease. It is thought that dried fruits will, ere long, become a leading item in the commerce of the country. Melons are quite prolific, also all the garden vegetables of the temperate zone. The grazing of stock is a source of fabulous profit, the purchase of cattle for the eastern markets having commenced about 1876. The winters are so mild that there is usually little need of feeding stock during that season of the year.

[graphic][merged small]

The military post is one of the institutions of Walla Walla, and a great benefit to the citizens in a commercial point of view. It is a half mile or so from the city proper, occupying ten or more acres, with a parade ground, officers' quarters, barracks, cavalry stables, and commissary buildings. A strong military force always occupies the place, as it is well situatedfor reaching all points in case of Indian troubles. It was no later ago than 1877 that a general Indian alarm affected the whole valley. Travel was obstructed, and business came to a standstill. But the Nez Percé war, which caused the excitement, never crossed the Snake River, and quiet was restored. The improvements of the years 1881 and 1882 were the elegant court house of the sketch, costing some $60,000; a handsome

Vol. XII.–No. 3.-14

brick Catholic church, costing $20,000; numerous costly residences and stores; and the introduction of gas made from pitch-pine.

In the formative society of the Walla Walla valley, the same characteristics may be observed as in early Ohio. Schools, churches, and good local government seem to have been foremost in the minds and plans of the leading settlers. Whitman Seminary, founded on the old mission site, and chartered by an Act of the Legislature in 1859, was after awhile located in a substantial building within the limits of the thriving young city. Recently the trustees have placed it upon a solvent foundation as a permanent seat of learning, and developed it into a college. Other seminaries and public schools are multiplying with the natural growth and necessities of a cultivated community.

Of the several religious denominations, the Congregationalists were the first to found a church in the valley—through the self-sacrificing missionaries Dr. Whitman and Mr. Spalding. The earliest services of the Methodist Episcopal Church were held during the Indian war of 1856. The Episcopalians established worship here in 1864, although no regular organization existed prior to 1872 ; St. Paul's Church was erected in 1873. The Cumberland Presbyterian Church was founded in 1873, and services were held in the old Court House until the new edifice was ready for occupancy. The regular Presbyterian denomination was first represented in the valley in 1877. The Baptists held services as early as 1870, but it was not until 1879 that they perfected an organization. The Seventh Day Advent Church was founded about 1874, with eighteen members. The Methodist Episcopalians organized in 1876 with seven members. The United Brethren Church has existed since 1865. The Catholics established their mission in the valley about 1847, and in 1850 the first steps were taken toward building a sanctuary; in 1863 forty acres of land were purchased, and St. Vincent's Academy founded by the Charity Sisters of Montreal; St. Patrick's School for boys was opened in 1870, and St. Mary's Hospital in 1879; the church edifice, as stated above, was built in 1881.

It would be instructive as well as entertaining to trace the growth of the pioneer newspaper of the valley-founded in 1861 under many discouragements; but our limited space forbids. We will only add one item in this connection. The Statesman in 1862 was printed on wrappingpaper for want of better material, and subscribers at the mines were notified “that gold dust sent for subscriptions ought not to be one-half sand."

Martha J Lemel



In the year 1771, in the town of Popayán, in the Nuevo Reino de Granada, now the United States of Colombia, in the northern part of South America, Francisco José de Caldas first saw the light, a man whose name, destined to immortality in those regions which lie between the Isthmus of Darien and Cape Horn, is almost unknown in those regions which lie between Darien and the Bay of Fundy.

For the lad then and there born, fate seems to have been none too kind. His parents on both sides were of respectable descent--strictly speaking, belonging to families of the law. They were plain people, with no special gift, I dare say, of detecting Hans Andersen's young swan in the midst of the brood of farm-yard fowls which formed their little family. Francisco José in his youth developed abilities of no common order, with inclinations no less marked. Cáldas père laughed at the inclinations, while he resolved to utilize the abilities by concentrating them upon law. The dearest wish of the father was to see his son pleading before the courts of the Viceroy at Santa Fé de Bogotá. That of the son was to dedicate his life to the study of the sciences. It was by the merest accident that Francisco learned that there were sciences to which grave men had dedicated lives, rich with fruit, to a grateful humanity. Before he was sixteen he had seen some geometrical figures and a few globes. But what did these amount to, after all ? How little there was in these to vitalize the intellectual instinct in the simple boy may be judged from the thousand youths who, endowed with good minds, see globes only to yawn over them, and confront geometrical figures only to curse them. Soon, too soon, he reached the end of his book-resources. Then, he stood impotent but eager; hopeless but resolute.

At sixteen he had not advanced one step toward the profession which his parents had chosen for him. He would do nothing at Popayán. Then, it was clear, he must be transferred to Bogotá, the capital of the colonial kingdom; the center of its civilization; that glorious place where the Viceregal Court scattered its gold and its honors, and where the fledglings of the law feathered out into profound expositors of jurisprudence. To Bogotá, therefore, he went, entering the Colegio Mayor del Rosario under, at least, a passive promise to do his best to issue from its walls a Cicero. That he did his duty must be admitted ; that he did his best, his parents

« 上一頁繼續 »