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Water Under the Bridge: Sept. 6, 2017

From the pages of Astoria’s daily newspapers

Published on September 6, 2017 12:01AM

An auger drill was used in a Neahkahnie treasure hunt by Tony Mareno of Salem. The drill failed to locate the treasure chest and Mareno returned this week with with a large power shovel.

Eleanor Wimber

An auger drill was used in a Neahkahnie treasure hunt by Tony Mareno of Salem. The drill failed to locate the treasure chest and Mareno returned this week with with a large power shovel.

10 years ago this week — 2007

OLNEY — In their instinctive quest to reach spawning grounds, fish in rivers throughout the state clash with walls of water tumbling over dams.

Now one of those barriers, a dam 3 miles from Olney, has disappeared after it was turned to rubble.

A lazy bend on the South Fork Klaskanie River has become a construction site this summer as a team of federal, state and county agencies collaborate with contractors, volunteers and nonprofits to reopen more than 3 miles of prime salmon and trout spawning grounds.

Officials say the $300,000 project is an example of how water needs, conservation concerns and reclamation goals can be achieved with a single solution.

Jon Englund’s controversial riverfront condominium project received the Astoria City Council’s stamp of approval Wednesday.

The unanimous votes came after an all-day hearing at the Liberty Theater, which featured impassioned pleas from citizens to halt what they saw as an alarming development whose height and mass will block views and change the character of the riverfront while lining the pockets of developers at he expense of ordinary citizens.

The rooms of the Commodore Hotel are slowly being reawakened after a four-decade coma, and they contain some mysterious vestiges of the past.

The three-story Lewis Building, located at the northeast corner of Commercial and 14th streets in Astoria, was built in 1925. At street level, it was home to Chris’s News, an Astoria institution and neighborhood store, from the late 1940s until two years ago. The Commodore, housed in the upper two floors, closed in 1964.

Now, the entire building is being rehabilitated.

50 years ago — 1967

Oregon’s National Forests were ordered closed to logging and all but limited recreational use Thursday as extreme fire danger, a long dry spell and uncontrolled fires continued.

Three pleasure boats capsized within 20 minutes of each other in rough swells at Peacock Spit Saturday, and all 12 persons aboard the boats were rescued, according to Cape Disappointment Coast Guard station and the air station.

Tony Mareno of Salem has returned to the beach at Neahkahnie to resume his hunt for the legendary Neahkahnie treasure, using a large power shovel.

Last week an auger drill Mareno was using brought up some brass particles.

Mareno was not available for comment but he reportedly believed them to be from the ornamentation on the outside of the treasure chest, and he expected to bring it up the next day. Friday, it was reported that four bores had been made and nothing encountered, and that the contractors who were assisting had gone to Portland. The deep depression on the beach was filled up and leveled and the rope barricade removed.

Spawning will be difficult for fall Chinook, and perhaps for coho if the area does not experience some rains soon to raise levels of streams, according to Ernest Jefferies, director of hatcheries, Oregon State Fish commission.

75 years ago — 1942

Students now working in the canneries will be encouraged to stay at their jobs for a week or 10 days even after opening of school Sept. 8, the school board decided Tuesday night after hearing James Cellars of the CRPA again present the packers’ need for labor.

Cellars told the school board of the packers difficulties in keeping their labor supply on hand, and mentioned that many students were quitting to take a brief vacation before school opening, many housewives were quitting so as to get their children ready for school opening, and some parents did not want their sons and daughters to work while going to school. The CRPA now employs 58 students, he said, and other canneries also have high school students working.

M.T. Hoy, Oregon master fish warden, told the Astoria Rotary Club Wednesday that records of increases in the fall run of Columbia River salmon pointed to a possible big year when the season opens Sept. 10, although he would make no prediction what would happen when gillnetters return to the river for opening of fall fishing.

Among the ardent fishermen who have tried their luck on the Columbia during the sport salmon season is none other than Major Gen. James I. Muir of Fort Lewis, commanding general, northwest sector, western defense command, and also commanding general of the 44th Infantry. He not only tried his luck once but twice, and his luck was good both times.

The Maritime Commission today awarded a contract to the Astoria-Warrenton Shipyards, Inc., for construction of three 150-foot, seagoing wooden tugs at $418,370 each.

The Astoria-Warrenton company was incorporated here recently by a group of builders from Santa Barbara, California, who announced it was negotiating for construction of a yard on the Skipanon River across from Prouty mill.


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