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Long Day’s Trip Was Normal

Next time you feel hassled by the freeway traffic as you’re travel between Salem and Portland, Oregon, a distance of about 40 miles, you might consider this trip taken in 1865. It was written by Rev. Samuel Parker in his “Journal of an Exploring Tour Beyond the Rocky Mountains.”

“In 1865 Monday, June 5 clear and pleasant. Arose quite early; packed things for trip; ate breakfast; called at printing office (Oregonian where I had been setting type for more than a year); went down to the boat, anxiously awaiting the hour of departure up the river.

“Started at 7:00 a.m. on the Senator with Captain Pease as master; fare to Oregon City, one dollar; walked the portage; [The portage referred to the first railroad track in Oregon built in 1846. It transported travelers around the Willamette Falls at Oregon City.] threw carpetbag on tram, drawn by a skinny, discouraged horse; went on the Reliance at Canemah; arrived in Salem at 6:30 p.m.; fare four dollars.

“Pleasant trip, though monotonous. Reading most of the time. Saw a deer swimming in the river.”

One thing that hasn’t changed: at today’s gasoline prices, the cost is about the same for this trip.

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Bossons Wall Masks No Longer Made

Bosson plaques were a Christmas project started in 1944 by W.H. Bosson. First sold to friends and neighbors, these metal and plaster creations were so popular that the family began to manufacture them as a business.

Altogether, over 800 designs were made of these chalkware wall masks.

The Bossons factory closed in 1996.

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Ditch Water Lighted Boise


...a note from history

The Capital Electric Light, Motor and Gas Co. has been incorporated at Boise City, for the purpose of lighting the capital city of Idaho by electricity. Power to run the dynamo will be furnished by water from one of the numerous ditches that ramify the Boise country.

(From The West Shore, 1887.)

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Icons Miniature Works Of Art


Small pictures with religious images, known as icons, have been a central feature in the Orthodox Church since approximately the 15th century. These small artifacts are usually quality works of art, and are most likely to be found in Russian and Eastern Europe.

Some of the best examples were made of silver over painted wood and were decorated with jewels.

In the last few decades, imitations have flooded the tourist market in Europe. The icons have been made to look old; one part to check is the metal trim, which is usually of tin rather than silver.

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