Wednesday, February 11, 2009

Old Postcard Wednesday--Multnomah Falls, Columbia River Highway, Oregon

I've seen
Multnomah Falls many times from the Columbia River Highway (dedicated in 1916) but have never stopped. Mike and I plan on visiting the site this year. I read a few years ago that it has been knocked off from its #1 place as Oregon's top tourist attraction by one of the Indian casinos, but I'm not sure if that's true and I cannot find any information to substantiate either claim.

A website featuring information about Oregon Post Card History includes this information about the Cross & Dimmitt, the names appearing on the lower right corner of the postcard:
Arthur B. Cross partnered with Edward L. Dimmitt to sell real photo post cards of the Columbia River Gorge, Mt. Hood, and Portland. Cross opened his Electric Studio in Portland i 1909. Dimmitt was born in 1881 in Columbia, Missouri. In 1909, Dimmitt was first listed in the Portland City Directory as a waiter. In 1914, he began working for Cross at the Electric Studio. In 1916, they became partners and named their business "Cross & Dimmitt."

Cross & Dimmitt sold post cards off the running boards of their Model T. at Crown Point as the Columbia River Highway was under construction. A set of 20 views, which are fairly common today, sold for $1. (I have that set of postcards) Their business grew and they built a post card stand at Crown Point. In the 1920's they set up a studio at 72nd and Sandy Boulevard in Portland. Cross died August 6, 1940, and Dimmitt died on April 26, 1963 at the age of 82. He managed the Vista House for 40 years.

The Friends of Multnomah Falls website contains excellent photos and more information.

The Word Multnomah:
(pronounced /məltˈnoʊmə/) is one of 36 counties in the U.S. state of Oregon. Though smallest in area, it is the most populous as its county seat, Portland, is the state's largest city. In 2006, the county's population was 681,454. The county was likely named after Native American people first recorded in the journals of the Lewis and Clark Expedition, Mulknomans, who lived in a village on the east side of present-day Sauvie Island. (An alternative theory holds that Multnomah is a corruption of nematlnomaq, meaning down river.)

Evening Waterfall

What was the name you called me?-
And why did you go so soon?

The crows lift their caw on the wind,
And the wind changed and was lonely.

The warblers cry their sleep-songs
Across the valley gloaming,
Across the cattle-horns of early stars.

Feathers and people in the crotch of a treetop
Throw an evening waterfall of sleepy-songs.

What was the name you called me?-
And why did you go so soon?

-Carl Sandburg



Leslie said...

I just love your name-not too common around here. The falls look wonderful and I do hope you got for a visit. I'm sure they are even better in person.

Thanks for visiting my blog and do come again.


Mibsy said...

Lydia, everything about this post is now and visit those falls! Who needs casinos when you have natural wonders such as these to see? Their website is awesome, and I especially enjoyed the Sandburg poem.

Melinda said...

I love that Sandburg poem, Lydia.

How terrible that the casino has damaged the natural beauty of Multnomah Falls. This has happened to so many wonderful places located around the Northwest (including Montana). I understand the need for casinos on some level--but cannot stand to see the pristine beauty of these places damaged. It's just such a sad situation.

Take care,


Buddha said...

Been there with my family!
I got the exactly same shot - of course in color.
It is spectacular indeed.
You will have a great time guaranteed :)

Lydia said...

@Leslie- I should have seen the falls way before now. But we live with major waterfalls only a short drive from our house, so ease and loyalty have kept us going back there.
See you back at your blog. :)

@Mibsy- It sure looks like the kind of place that you describe enjoying with your husband and son. Travel tip just for *you*: if/when you visit Oregon be sure not to miss The Grotto in Portland.

Me? not a fan of casinos.

@Melinda- I'm happy to say that I misled you in the wording of my post! The casino that is such a huge attraction is actually not in the Columbia Gorge, but on the way to the beach at Lincoln City. However, your concerns are prescient since there continues to be a movement to establish one not too far from Multnomah Falls. It's a horrible idea that I hope fails.

@Buddha- Wow, just think of that! You got to Multnomah Falls from California before I did from a couple hours drive. Makes no sense, I tell 'ya.....

Hattie said...

I've been up to the top of the falls a couple of times. It would not even cross my mind to go to a casino. I don't understand other people, no doubt.
we have a wonderful falls a few miles from us: Akaka Falls.

Lydia said...

I remember now that you used to live in Portland, and I'm glad you too advantage of the nature around it. Are you a native Oregonian? If so, ready to celebrate the state's 150th birthday on Valentine's Day?
I looked at the site you provided. The lore is so fascinating, and I love those Hawaiian words.

Melinda said...

Ah, I am glad to hear that then! But you are right--there is still cause for concern.




Related Posts with Thumbnails