Down Memory Lane - St Helens

Like a scene from an Alfred Hitchcock thriller, skies darkened, street lights and business signs came on automatically on Orofino’s Johnson Avenue, and motorists were forced to turn on their headlights when volcanic ash from Mt. St. Helens blackened the sunlight and turned day to night at mid-afternoon May 18. Clearwater Tribune, May 22, 1980

10 years – May 20, 2010

Bill and Sandy Heinrich have donated one and a half acres of land to the Upper Fords Creek Rural Fire Department. The land is located at mile marker nine on Upper Fords Creek Road. The fire department plans to construct a fire station, *

The Clearwater County Commissioners voiced opposition to the drawdown of the reservoir level at this time. The drop in level will impact recreation usage on the Memorial Holiday weekend. This is historically the start of boating and camping season on the reservoir.

The current water level is at 1566 feet and water supply forecast is 58 percent of normal. The three days discharge will boost the 10cks to exceed the upper 90 kcfs range. This will reduce the chance for the reservoir to refill to approximately 49 percent. The maximum impact will be approximately three feet of reservoir water. *

20 years – May 18, 2000

Eighty-two Orofino High School seniors will be graduated in commencement exercises at Orofino High School. Senator Marguerite McLaughlin will deliver the commencement address. *

Thirty-two seniors will be graduating from Timberline High School (THS) in commencement exercises at the THS auditorium. The commencement address will be given by Greg Billups. *

30 years – May 24, 1990

A Time Capsule planted in Canoe Camp in the early 40’s was removed last week and placed in the Museum. It will be opened July 1 at Clearwater County’s Centennial Barbeque. A new Time Capsule will be buried that same day. *

“Here the ill and hungry men of the Lewis and Clark Expedition hewed and burned out the holler of five canoes which were to carry them to the Pacific.”

These words are inscribed on a sign at Canoe Camp where the Expedition stopped from Sept. 26 to Oct. 7, 1805.

Now 85 years later, the Orofino Chamber of Commerce members are whittling two canoes from Potlach Corp. donated trees, for placement in the historic Canoe Park.” *

40 years – May 22, 1980

Clearwater County dug itself out of a blanket of volcanic ash this week with somewhat less problems than its northern neighbors and Spokane, but still with considerable disruption of normal life and business.

Coatings of the ask discharge from Mt. St. Helen’s eruption, 280 miles west, continued their fall out from high elevation levels and bringing the most severe dust conditions in county history. *

Ground leveling at the new Osterberg Optical Building facing Riverside Avenue was halted when Wayne Cleveland, backhoe operator, uncovered a skull in the open upper portion of the lot north of the retaining wall below Brown Ave.

An anthropologist agreed to visit the area and said he thought the skull was that of a 40 year old Indian woman. Contractor Roy Brooks suspended digging operations until the experts arrived to see if more skeletal bones were available. The bones of a dog were also found, but so far no more human bones have been unearthed. *

50 years – May 21, 1970

Nez Perce National Historic Park was officially designated by Secretary of the Interior, Walter J. Hickle.

The park extends through 23 components stretching from the Montana line to Lewiston and south to the Whitebird Battlefield, making its 7,500 square mile area the most unique National Park in the U.S. *

Shatters State Discus record - Jim McGoldrick of Orofino High School set a new State record at the State track meet in Twin Falls. He bettered the A-2 record by 25 feet and the overall State record by nearly 7 feet with a throw of 176’5”. He had one illegal toss which went outside the foul zone that was well over 180’. Less than 20 high school athletes in the nation will throw over 180’ this year. The 16 year old junior will be back for another year of competition with Coach Art Neumayer. *

60 years – May 19, 1960

Banner Grange voted to have its secretary contact the governor, senators, and representatives opposing the raise in nursing requirements for Idaho Rest Homes and nursing homes. Members felt the homes are taking care of a great need, and that the added cost would make it impossible for the average family to pay for the care of their aged members whom they are not able to care for at home. *

A recent survey of persons living in rural areas serviced by the Lewiston District Office indicated that some people are unfamiliar with the procedure for obtaining Social Security cards.

Persons needing new Social Security cards, or replacing a lost Social Security card may secure the proper application form at their nearest post office. *

70 years – May 18, 1950

The fourth drowning in the Clearwater this year took the life of an unidentified man when a car plunged off the curve three miles west of Lenore. Motorists saw the car plunge into the river and tried to help a bald headed man about 50, who was trying to reach shore but was swept under. Officers are still searching for the car as an aid to identify the man. *

Jackie Blenden, 5, owed her life to the rescue efforts of Charles “Chuck” Farrow who plunged into the icy waters of Orofino Creek and brought her to shore after she had been swept downstream perilously close to the flood swollen Clearwater. The little girl was playing with Farrow’s daughter, Beverly, 4, when a rock gave way and she tumbled into the swift stream near the Lumbermen’s Hotel.

Beverly ran for help and her mother rushed out to grab the girl as she was being swept downstream.

Farrow, who works as a driver for Lolo Pass, was home sleeping and rushed out barefooted a few seconds later. A big husky “stevedore” Chuck was able to swim out in the current, grab the girl and bring her back to safety.

“It almost got me,” Farrow said about the ice cold water which was over his head. He and the girl were swept about 200 feet downstream near the railroad bridge before they could get out. *

80 years – May 23, 1940

Harry Krumsick, manager of the Orofino Motor Sales, Inc., who for the past several years has operated a fleet of trucks and held the General Motors truck sales agency, announced this week he has taken over sales and service for Plymouth and De Soto cars and will be the distributing agent for Clearwater County on Firestone tires and tubes.

Display rooms for the new cars will face Main Street and will hold two vehicles. New neon signs will be placed on both sides of the building, one facing main street and the other on College Avenue. *

George Blake, a local mortician, applied for permission to construct a crematory on the northerly part of the unnumbered tract of land adjacent to Lot 1, Block 3, Blake’s addition and adjacent to A street and Brown avenue. As this application covers a site outside the fire zone an ordinance requires that the application be published and a chance for adjacent property owners to protest. *

90 years – May 23, 1930

The move to secure an airplane landing field adjacent to the city is fast taking shape and the prospects are very bright, according to a report of the commercial club’s committee on airport and golf. It was recently learned that property of the North Idaho Sanitarium from which the institution has been taking some of its hay, can be leased for a period of five years, the rental amount being equivalent to the average yearly crop of hay taken from the ground. *

Most of the defendants from Clearwater County involved in violations of prohibition laws were arraigned in federal court at Moscow. Five pleaded guilty and received sentences while the majority pleaded not guilty and had their trial dates set.

The Dunn case was the hardest fought battle of any tried so far this term. The government produced only two witnesses, who made the purchases, but the defense sprung an array of persons to take the stand, a number of these testifying to the good reputation maintained by the Lumberman’s Hotel for orderliness, this being an attempt to break down the evidence of the prohibition operatives that liquor had been purchased while Dunn was there. *

(0) comments

Welcome to the discussion.

Keep it Clean. Please avoid obscene, vulgar, lewd, racist or sexually-oriented language.
PLEASE TURN OFF YOUR CAPS LOCK.
Don't Threaten. Threats of harming another person will not be tolerated.
Be Truthful. Don't knowingly lie about anyone or anything.
Be Nice. No racism, sexism or any sort of -ism that is degrading to another person.
Be Proactive. Use the 'Report' link on each comment to let us know of abusive posts.
Share with Us. We'd love to hear eyewitness accounts, the history behind an article.