Ear: Astorian

From the Tuesday, July 18, 1882 edition of The Daily Astorian:

Unheeded warning No. 1: It is a habit among the careless and unthinking to drop lighted matches and stumps of cigars as they pass along ... the dry planks of the sidewalk ...

Note: About a year later, on July 2, 1883, a disastrous fire started at the Clatsop Mill at 13th and Exchange streets (then part of the Astoria waterfront, on posts and piers, with plank sidewalks). Wood shavings and trash were piled up below the mill, making perfect tinder. The fire spread east to 17th Street, racking up around $250,000 (about $6.3 million now) in damage. (old300.org/ahistory.html)

Unheeded Warning No. 2: The cannerymen of the Columbia River do not seem to heed the fact that they are swiftly sweeping that great estuary of its supply of delicious salmon in their greed to capture all they can, and can all they can capture, regardless of final results. — Portland Journal of Commerce

Note: In 1883, 39 Columbia River canneries produced 42 million pounds (yes, million) of salmon. (bit.ly/nosalmon4u)

Colden’s Liebig’s Liquid Beef and Tonic Invigorator will cure indigestion and perpetuate bodily vigor. Take no other.

Irony alert: William A. Greene, M.D., of Macon, Georgia, declared in the professional journal Annals of Anatomy and Surgery, “I have found it the best remedy I have ever used in chronic alcoholism ... appeasing the thirst for more alcohol.” Undoubtedly true, since that was the main ingredient. (bit.ly/liquidbeef)

• By the first of August the time between Astoria and Chicago, via Northern Pacific (Railway) route, will be eight days and six hours.

Note: Things didn’t speed up until 1898, when the link between Astoria and the Northern Pacific Railroad opened. The first train from Astoria to Portland ran on May 16, 1898; 700 people hopped aboard to celebrate the occasion. (bit.ly/AstNPac)

Elleda Wilson is an editorial assistant for The Astorian and author of the award-winning In One Ear community column. Contact her at 971-704-1718 or ewilson@dailyastorian.com.

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