In 1892 Tucker Bridge was a critical transportation connection for the Hood River valley. This double A truss bridge was constructed in 1881 by Louis Rhoades, and remained in service until 1905.
Civil War veteran Barton Tucker had quite a thriving enterprise at this spot. 1892 was the year Mr. Tucker built his grand house at this site, which may have been the reason the photographer visited to capture this image and this other HHR image.
Tucker had a very adventerous life to say the least. He was originally a teacher by profession, then a farmer in his home state of North Carolina. He did not necessarily believe in "the cause" when the Civil War broke out. He eventually left his wife and small daughter on the farm, making his way north to Cairo, Illinois where he joined the 6th Kentucky Volunteer Cavalry. He would make his way to the sea with Sherman.
After the war he returned home to his family, who like most had had a rough time of it. Among his children there were a set of twins, named Lincoln and Sherman.
Eventually he went to the Wichita, Kansas area where he tried farming on the prairie, only to finally re-locate to Astoria, Oregon where he took out a timber claim and followed the logging industry before the bought the mill at Tucker Bridge in 1887.
He was an active member in the Grand Army of the Republic in Hood River.
He had a number of enterprises there, including a post office. In his later years he moved to California where he was struck by a street car and died the following day.
The Tucker home still stands on the property near the current bridge over the Hood River.
Charlott on 6th October 2011 @ 7:16am
Are the buildings on the right, in the previous photo?
Perhaps there is a distortion of distance and those buildings are farther from the bridge than they appear.
Thanks Charlott, for the info about Tucker.
l.e. on 6th October 2011 @ 7:34am
Is the house now Dorothy O'dells?
Kate D on 6th October 2011 @ 9:59am
Is that some sort of water pipe running along under the bridge and below that building? I could also be some sort of a walkway.
My guess is that this picture was taken in the late summer, as I noticed how low the Hood River was upstream there. Certainly not the volume that you see in the spring when the mountain snows are melting.
Charlott on 7th October 2011 @ 4:48am
This is looking up river. The view is from about the site of the modern tucker bridge. The new tucker bridge would run right through the back of that building on the left. The stone footing for the old bridge that you can see in the photo is still there today. It is just up stream from the new bridge. So is the approach road, now there is a little weather station there. The ladder and beach that everyone uses is just out of frame on the left.
andrew b on 7th October 2011 @ 10:16am
Charlott, good catch on the "pipe." It's hard to be sure even at full resolution, but it looks very much like a small flume-- two planks of wood forming a V shape. I'll need to check other pictures of the spot to see if I can find more evidence.
Arthur on 7th October 2011 @ 5:44pm
If that is a pipe or flume where is it bringing that water from. River bottom is much lower than that thing.
Charlott on 12th October 2011 @ 4:37pm
Charott, I've been scratching my head over the water source too. I don't see a dam to impound water. A few years later there was a dam built at the bridge and power generation was added-- I'll post some images of that. But this flume in 1892 is a mystery to me.
Arthur on 14th October 2011 @ 12:20pm
Was there a water wheel?
l.e. on 14th October 2011 @ 2:52pm
That is a good question....I have never heard of one or seen any pictures with one in it. It might not have been feasible with the rising and falling level of the river during the different seasons. If there was, they would have only been able to probably use it during the spring in high water, unless it was put quite far down.
Charlott on 19th October 2011 @ 7:10am
Where did the new house get its water supply? Is there a creek that comes down there?
Evidently George Crowel, whom Arthur has featured in other photos built the first saw mill in this spot and then sold to Tucker.
Why was a sawmill built in this spot?
l.e. on 22nd October 2011 @ 7:22pm
I came across this in the history of Chris Dethman, so I thought I would add it here.
"For a long period in the early days, Chris was supervisor of roads for the huge east side district, a territory extending to the Mount Hood region. He superintended the construction of the original Tucker Bridge, a wooden structure, since replaced by a modern concrete bridge, that has been one of the principal landmarks in the valley. Milt Odell was carpenter in charge of the job, and Chris remembers that Milt hewed the stringers."
l.e. on 26th March 2013 @ 9:52am