10 years ago this week – 2004

It was standing room only at the Astoria City Council chambers Monday as neighbors against a proposed sale of a city-owned lot in the 100 block of Exchange Street turned out in force for a public hearing.

Their concerns about the geologic stability of the area convinced members of the Astoria City Council not to sell the 7,500-square foot lot, valued at $47,000, which is within 100 feet of the 1954 Commercial Street slide.

Cannon Beach City Councilors got a 3 1/2 hour earful as people shared passionate opinions on the controversial short-term rentals issue.

But no decision was made, with the council setting time for more comments.

At 7:15 p.m., a full 15 minutes after the meeting started, more than 100 people continued to pack into the council chambers and sit on the floor. It was so full, Fire Chief Cleve Rooper requested that people leave the chambers after they gave comments.

Council members called the public hearing to allow residents to comment on proposed changes to the city’s short-term ordinance. As it stands, the ordinance will ban short-term rentals Jan. 1.

Bill Webb half blames Thursday’s capsizing of his Boston Whaler on an old sailor’s superstition.

When he bought the 17-foot boat, Webb changed the name from something so bland he doesn’t recall what it was, to the Little B Two.

“That’s what did it, that name. I changed the name,” Webb said.

50 years ago –1964

A gift of $100,000 to the city of Astoria by the family of Lord Jacob Astor was announced Monday by Mayor Harry Steinbock.

The Astors gave $6,000 toward the gift during their visit here for the Astoria Sesquicentennial celebration of 1961.

âœord Astor proposed this gift at the time he and members of his family planned their Astoria visit in 1961,â?Mayor Steinbock said. âœowever, British law prevented such a large gift at that time, and it has only been since Lord and Lady Astor moved to France that they could clear the legal entanglements away and make the full gift.

Astoria’s sparkling new Maritime museum was viewed by several hundred residents of the river country, with a goodly sprinkling of those from Portland and inland areas Sunday afternoon at its second annual open house.

Burnished brass, freshly varnished woods and high gloss on white enameled cases and woodwork throughout gave the appearance of a sparkling new ship to the beautiful museum, where several new displays have been set up in the back room, formerly sed as a work area.

Nearly 200 persons attended the Scenic Area Board hearing Monday afternoon at Cannon Beach Commercial club building and listened to arguments pro and con regarding placing of road signs on Highway 101 adjacent to the city.

The Cannon Beach Commercial club has petitioned the state Scenic Area Board to allow placement of commercial signs in three areas on the highway. Under the present ruling of the board, the highway adjacent to Cannon Beach has been designated as a scenic area which prohibits installation of billboards and commercial signs under state law.

The conflict of interest appeared to be between business people in Cannon Beach who want signs on the highway and residential property owners who do not.

75 years ago – 1939

From The Dalles to the sea, gillnetters at noon laid out miles of web less than 24 hours after the threat of a fish strike disappeared with the union accepting the 12-cent offer of packers for spring Chinook until August 1.

Delegates from every station on the Columbia were hastily summoned Sunday after a few fishermen had voted at each station on the acceptance or rejection of the offer. Telegrams from union headquarters were posted at stations out of town and in Astoria notices were put up.

In future construction of streets, the City of Astoria should provide sidewalks, City Manager James O. Convill said Monday night after the council asked that a sidewalk, if not one on both sides of the street, must be included in the construction of the proposed Hillcrest shortcut from West Jerome to First Avenue.

In a report to the council, Convill said that the proposed shortcut, to which he referred to as “The Willis West Avenue”to the chagrin of staunch Republicans who have named it as “Hillcrest Avenue,” would be 30 feet wide while Jerome Street was 40 feet and First Avenue 50 feet wide. The right-of-way is 80 feet.

Hal C. McCracken, local amateur short wave radio operator, said today he established radio contact with Naknek, Alaska Tuesday night about 10 o’clock and is prepared to relay messages to persons working at the Alaska cannery spot.

McCracken said the Alaska amateur station was hurriedly erected by Bob Burgess, a local Astoria amateur, with equipment owned by Frank Ashby of Morton, Wash. McCracken’s sending and receiving equipment is located at 8 Bond Street.

There was a camera fan in the crew of the Boeing clipper when she called at Tongue Point Friday while here builders passed title to Pan American Airways.

Shortly after the plane skimmed over the calm waters of the Columbia at 10:05 this morning, this camera fan stuck his head out of the hatch to check intensity of light with a meter. But unlike the other picture takers in the vicinity, Boeing’s man was not interested in taking snap of the huge plane.

“We want pictures of boats,” he yelled at Coast Guard personnel.

Bob Duke is the author of the weekly Water Under the Bridge column in The Astorian. Contact him at beachduke@gmail.com

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