By the early decades of the twentieth century the Mason's Liberty Home Orchards was the model for would-be Hood River Valley orchardists to emulate. The 85 foot water tower provided water and made a statement to all around. This C.S. Reeves image was probably shot for a postcard. I have also seen several stereocards of the orchard with its landmark water tower.
It's been really hard to reduce this great photo album and history to 5 days of photoblog entries. Call it an introduction. I'll definitely be posting more images from this album later. I'm also toying with the idea of converting some of our albums, like this one and Arline Moore's into ebooks so you can enjoy flipping through the pages and discovering the images with their informative handwritten captions.
Oh yes, there is the old water tower. This photo was taken from the top of Van Horn Butte.
If you look to the extreme left of the photo in the middle you will see a small house. This would have been the second home that was built by Mason. Still there, used as a tenant home by Walter Wells and Sons. The portion of the barn on the east side is still there. The packing house in the back burned.
The barn in front of the water tower was the barn of Martin Dragseth.
Look way to the back and see the huge house showing. That was the home of Augustus Paasch, still there, on Paasch Road. That would be his packing facility to the west of the house.
Charlott on 27th April 2012 @ 7:10am
If you look just west of the Dragseth barn you can see the Dragseth house, nestled in the trees.
Charlott on 27th April 2012 @ 7:12am
So, Charlott, was Dragseth a separate piece of property from Masons?
You can see the natural drainage that was in the first photo.
Thank you Arthur for this week's photos. I have enjoyed watching the changes, and admiring those who made the changes.
But I also feel a bit of sadness for the changes that the orchards, farms and towns made to an environment.
And thank you Charlott for your first hand knowledge of the area.
l.e. on 27th April 2012 @ 8:39am
I'm pretty sure that Walter Wells did carpentry work as an employee for Albert Mason. Walter helped build the Paasch house and many others in the Pine Grove area.
Jeffrey Bryant on 27th April 2012 @ 8:53am
Yes the Dragseth place was another parcel. I am not certain but think it may have been part of the origianl Feake Place.
Yes, my Uncle Walter and my Grandfather Perrry built many of the houses and barns in Pine Grove. Master carpenters, but never seemed to complete their own, this I know. My grandfather did a lot of the finish work in the older nice homes in Pine Grove, such as the Van Horn home.
Charlott on 27th April 2012 @ 9:47am
A note from Faith Ackerman, current owner of the Dragseth place: In the late 1800s it was owned by the Feak family who, in turn, sold it to George's (Ackerman) great uncle, Martin Dragseth, in 1902.
Martin came from Norway and married the school teacher, Anna Wagner, George's great-aunt.
Maria Kollas on 27th April 2012 @ 6:37pm
It was somewhere on that Feake property that there was the original school for the Pine Grove area. I don't think that there is anyone around who knows now exactly where it was.
Charlott on 30th April 2012 @ 5:31am