Here's a fun Monday mystery submitted by the great great grandson of the photographer, William Fouts Laraway.
We met W.F. Laraway previously. His jewelry store on Oak Street was the source of countless wedding rings, pocket watches, and fancy goods for the residents of the valley from his arrival around 1905 until his passing in 1928. He lived in a house on Front Street which still exists (as law offices) and was active in many local groups and activities.
We'll be learning much more about him through his photos in future posts, but this post is to pose a question: Where is this boulder? Laraway called it "the pebble." It looks like a glacial erratic, which were liberally scattered around the valley by Missoula floodwaters. The geologists among you should be able to tell us the maximum extent of floodwaters in the valley. Or maybe someone just recognizes this "pebble"? I'm assuming it still exists. Why would someone go through the effort of destroying it?
I recall seeing a map of glacial erratics of the Hood River valley, but can't find it now. I'll remind you we're still looking for another glacial erratic in Hood River, from this earlier post.
I think I may have known where this "pebble" was located.
It was I am fairly certain, not 100%, located on Van Horn Butte in Pine Grove.
There was a rock of some sort up there and I know people,some of them geologists who have looked for it. It was either blown up with dynamite or buried when some construction was done.
You can see it is on a hill and the landscape down in the valley on the right side of the photo looks quite familiar to me.
Charlott on 17th April 2017 @ 7:07am
It's at my house.
Don on 17th April 2017 @ 6:11pm
I heard Portland State geology professor Scott Burns, at a Sense of Place lecture, tell us how far up the Hood River Valley, the Missoula Floods traveled. I remember it was up past Odell, but not as high as Parkdale.
Since the term Missoula Floods, is a fairly recent term, we probably won't find it in the HR Glacier.
Harlen Bretz wrote a paper in 1919. He states that "Granite Bowlders are very rare in the Gorge, east of the Willamette broadening. Only one has ever been seen by the writer and none are noted in the literature. The lone bowlder lies in Hood River Valley, Oregon, on the summit of Van Horn Butte, a small cinder cone three quarters of a mile southeast of Van Horn. It is of granite. Its altitude is between 800 and 900 feet A.T...."
L.E. on 17th April 2017 @ 6:50pm
While I was typing, Don wrote his comment. Which is a whole lot more interesting than me quoting Harlen Bretz.
Don't you have more to say Don?
L.E. on 17th April 2017 @ 6:52pm
It's next to my house west of Panorama Point.
Don on 17th April 2017 @ 7:41pm
Panorama Point and Van Horn Butte are some distance from each other.
I'd really like to see the one near Panorama Point.
Charlott on 17th April 2017 @ 8:22pm
Glad to hear the pebble is still around.
Arthur, I know W.F. Laraway was a photographer, but isn't that him standing in front, on the right?
L.E. on 17th April 2017 @ 9:50pm
Yes, that is W.F. Laraway in the photograph. Apparently he was masterful at using a cable trigger for his camera shutter. I can't see the wire in this shot, but perhaps a closer examination of the negative will show it.
Arthur on 17th April 2017 @ 11:06pm
(My usual unsolicited camera comment)... Cmaeras of that era had remote triggers that were rubber "bulbs" full of air about the size of a big lemon, connected by a long thin rubber hose. I've seen some that were visible in shots that had to have cables 25 to 30 feet long. So he would've set up the shot (posed everyone, focused the camera, set exposure, and set the bulb cable release up), then rub the cable over on the ground to where he was going to stand - apprently doing a good job of covering the cable with grass. Then he triggered it with his foot, which is a little blurry in this shot. My guess is that the bulb is just behind that conveniently sized and placed rock, which he probably moved to that spot just to hide the bulb.
(Side note: the example of the bulb release I saw was in a book about early cyclists of the 1890s, where one especially clever cyclist / photographer trigger a picture of himself riding a pennyfarthing (massive front wheel / tiny rear wheel) by riding over the bulb, which he had placed in the road.)
Kyle on 18th April 2017 @ 8:40am
Don, I have a question. I am trying to figure out the view of the hillside in the background. Can you tell which direction this photo is facing?
L.E. on 18th April 2017 @ 9:02am
Sort of south east......
charlott on 19th April 2017 @ 8:02am
Looking through family photos at the link posted by family member Dean Fletcher at http://historichoodriver.com/index.php?showimage=1585 I suspect this is a Coooper Family/Laraway Family photo.
In a 2001 Hood River News article, there is a mention of this rock.
L.E. on 21st April 2017 @ 8:31am
Yes, that's the source of this image. The owner has given me permission to share his scans with you.
Arthur on 21st April 2017 @ 8:53am