We found this wonderful brochure in the archives. It's a 1911 brochure for the Gilbert-Vaughan Implement Company, dealer for Chalmers, Hudson, and Cadillac automobiles. I thought you might enjoy the tale of the attempts to climb to Cloud Cap by automobile. I wanted to test an OCR engine so the entire story is below, or you can read most of it in the image above:
FIRST ATTEMPTS TO REACH CLOUD CAP INN
Nine years ago the first automobile made its appearance in Hood River. It was shipped from Pendleton, Oregon, by Mr. E. Y. Judd, who hoped to make the trip to Cloud Cap Inn.
The car was indeed a crude affair as compared with the cars of today. It had but a single cylinder and was rated at eight horse power.
Mr. Judd made the start from the Mount Hood hotel bright and early one beautiful spring morning. He took the precaution, however, of hiring Mr. J. J. Luckey to follow him with a team.
All went well until they reached the sharp turn at the foot of Tucker’s hill, five miles from town. Here the car got stalled in the sand and the team was brought into good use. It was necessary, however, to blindfold the horses, as they could not be induced to approach the machine.
After a long, hard pull the machine reached the foot of Booth’s hill, where Mr. Judd, finally abandoned the car and finished the trip with horses.
The car was brought back to Hood River and shipped to Pendleton.
With the spring of 1905 came Howard M. Covey with a single cylinder Cadillac, and a ﬁrm determination to reach Cloud Cap Inn. Mr. Covey brought with him S. S. Baldwin, driving a four, cylinder 30-horse power Pierce Great Arrow.
The water in the Columbia was high at this time and the two cars were taken oﬁ the boat in front of the O. R. & N. depot. The news that there were two automobiles in town spread like wildﬁre. The verdict of the crowd which quickly gathered was that they would never make the stiff climb to the depot. But both cars made it without apparent effort.
Early next morning Mr. Covey and “Baldy,” as he afterward became known to all the residents of the valley, together with two passengers, made the trip to Cloud Cap Inn. The picture shows Mr. Covey and one of the passengers on the snow back of the Inn. The picture above shows the car climbing the steps at the Inn. This is the ﬁrst car which ever reached the Inn, and is a record for the Cadillac.
On the return trip Mr. Covey, leaving his passengers at the Inn, attempted to make a speed record. As he tore down Booth’s hill and came to the cross road he did not know which way to turn. Coatless, his hat lost somewhere on the road far back, his hair clipped close to his head and followed by a cloud of dust, it is no ‘wonder that C. R. Bone, who was working in his orchard nearby, mistook him for an escaped convict, and on being asked which road to take, replied, “Keep right on going!”
Mr. Covey’s success on this trip proved the feasibility of the automobile as a stage. Since that time the “Cloud Cap Inn Auto Stage” has been a common sight during the summer months.
Category: [Downtown Hood River]
This is a great bit of history, this should be of interest to many, an early business, early cars and primitive roads.
Kenn on 12th November 2015 @ 7:13am
Great piece of history!!
We have seen many HHR photos of early cars on a forested road. This helps put their timeline in perspective.
Can you imagine the skeptics standing around the boat landing, waiting for the cars to climb the hill to the depot?
L.E. on 12th November 2015 @ 8:37am
Buzz on 12th November 2015 @ 8:57am
There are some other interesting articles in this pamphlet. Some day I'll share the one about how much fun it is to drive at night, or what a good driver Miss Davidson is.
Arthur on 12th November 2015 @ 11:02am