Wisdom, Washington and the Homestead Cemetery

Name: Wisdom (Lewis County)
Class: A1
GPS: 46.412606, -122.638418

Directions: Only accessible during hunting season when Weyerhaeuser opens the roads to the public. The exact location of the “town” is debatable, but it was likely about a mile north along Cedar near the Wisdom Mine where Cuts Road and Cedar Creek Road intersect.

Description: Nothing remains of Wisdom except for a small graveyard called “Homestead Cemetery” that contains two graves. The deceased are Sarah Marinth Withrow and Mira Cordelia McKinna.

Wisdom was likely named after the Wisdom mine and seems to have contained less then a dozen houses and farms. It is unclear how large of an operation the mine was, and if it’s workers considered themselves part of Wisdom or just went there for supplies.

USS Oregon – “McKinley’s Bulldog”

It can be said that behind the USS Constitution, no other ship is as important to the development of the United States as a nation then the USS Oregon. While she was involved in four wars, it was her time in the Spanish American War that made her famous.


After the Samoan Crisis in 1889 showed the United States just how unprepared the US Navy was for the United States’ place in world politics, an reluctant, isolationist and heavily Republican Congress Authorized the construction of three battle ships on June 30th, 1890. The act authorizing called them seagoing coastal battleships, a name chosen to appease those who thought the United States shouldn’t involve itself outside of it’s own coastal waters and the “Big Navy” expansionists who believed the the US would need large seagoing vessels in the near future.

These three ships were the Indiana, the Massachusetts, and the Oregon. The Indiana and Massachusetts were built in Philadelphia, but the Oregon was built at Union Iron Works in San Francisco. Construction of the Oregon started on November 19, 1891. She was launched almost two years later on October 26th, 1893 in front of a crowd of over 100,000 people.

Her amour, built by the Carnegie Steel Corporation, was installed in 1894, and her sea trials were held in May 1896. The USS Oregon handily beat the sea trials, even putting in a better average time then her two sister ships, and she was officially given over the US Navy on July 15th, 1896.

USS Oregon

USS Oregon at Sea Trials, May 6th, 1896. Photo by I. West Taber from Navsource


In March 1898 the Oregon was ordered to Juniper Inlet to join with the Atlantic Fleet in preparation for war with Spain. Captain Charles E. Clark took command after on March 17th after the previous Captain, Alexander H. McCormick, had become seriously ill. The Oregon set out on March 19th, 1898 to join the American fleet assembling in Florida. It successfully weathered a gale as it was passing the Straights of Magellan, dodged the rumored Spanish Fleet outside of Brazil and finally arrived at Key West on May 6th, 1898.

At the time, this 66 day trip of 14,500 miles was a record. It proved two things. First that a properly engineered and kept up Battleship could steam swiftly to any part of the world (the United States still follows this train of thought,) and more importantly this voyage became a major argument in building the Panama Canal.

The Oregon firing at the fortifications outside of Santiago Bay

The Oregon firing at the fortifications outside of Santiago Bay

But it was not until July 3, 1898 that the Oregon saw action. After part of the fleet had left that morning with Admiral Sampson to conference with General Shafter a few miles away. About 45 minutes afterwards, the Spanish fleet attempted to run the blockade of Santiago. The Oregon, who’s engines were kept running hot during the blockade, immediately rushed to catch them even though it was the furthest away. The sight of her cutting through the ocean to create a huge bow wave, known in the Navy as “having a bone in her teeth,” led to the ships nickname “McKinley’s Bulldog.”

The USS Connecticut in 1916 showing "the bone in her teeth"

The USS Connecticut in 1916 showing “the bone in her teeth”

As she passed the harbor she participated in attacks on the Spanish torpedo destroyers Pluton and Furor. The were finished off by the Indiana, the Iowa, and the armed yacht USS Gloucester.

The next up was the Teresa. It had slowed down, possibly to delay the pursuing ships, at 10:00 on the dot. Ten minutes later she was on fire and limped to the coast where she could be beached. Captain Clark and the Oregon, with the support of the Brooklyn then chased down, and fired upon the Almirante Oquendo which was out of the battle in only twelve minutes. The Almirante Oquendo beached itself only half a mile away from the Teresa.

The next in line was the Vizcaya. It had been firing upon the Brooklyn and crossed the bow in an attempt to fire at both ships at once. The Oregon hit the Vizcaya, who then turned sharply back to it’s original course. Minutes later, it too was surrendering and beaching itself.

Captain Clark watching a shot at the Cristobal Colon

Captain Clark watching a shot at the Cristobal Colon

Afterwards the Oregon really came into its own. The Spanish Flagship, the Cristobal Colon, was six miles ahead. The Oregon increased speed to 16 knots and came within gun range at 12:50. With just the forward gun firing, the Oregon forced the Cristobal to surrender at 1:12. At this point, the Spanish American War was effectively over even though the crew didn’t know it.

The Cristobal Cobol from the deck of the Oregon after it surrendered.

The Cristobal Cobol from the deck of the Oregon after it surrendered.

While the Oregon certainly proved itself, it has to be noted that the Cristobal was technically the faster ship. The crew of the Cristobal had been seconded as soldiers the day before, were mostly running on alcohol to keep them awake, the Cristobal had run out of it’s better coal halfway through the battle and the ship’s hull was heavily barnacled. All of these factors led to her surrender. 1

USS Oregon, August 20th, 1898 after the Spanish-American War.

USS Oregon, August 20th, 1898 after the Spanish-American War.

In 1899 with a new captain, and a mostly new crew, the newly outfitted Oregon headed to the Philippines where it acted as flagship of the Asiatic Squadron and supported action in the Philippine-American War.

After that war, she was sent to Hong Kong to pickup sailors and marines who were needed in China to support the Boxer Rebellion. While doing so, it anchored during a heavy fog outside the Gulf of Pechili on June 28th, 1900. Unfortunately when the fog cleared, the USS Oregon struck Pinnacle Rock. The shipped was holed and the forward compartment flooded.

Luckily the weather held for three days and the damage repaired enough for the Oregon to limp to the Japanese naval base at Kure. The Japanese, eager to support the Americans, did the best they could in repairing her, but the Oregon was ordered to return to San Francisco for repairs. The City, learning of this and her estimated time of arrival on June 13th, 1901 planned a celebration in her honor. The Oregon messed up those plans by arriving a full twenty four hours ahead of schedule. Fortunately the city is always ready to party and showed the Oregon a good time.

The USS Oregon made it’s way back to China in 1902, where she enforced the neutrality of Shanghai by training search lights on a Japanese Navy ship chasing a Russian Navy ship into the port on February 8, 1904. The Chinese Nationalists instituted a boycott of American goods on July 20th, 1905 which spread to the Philippines, Hawai’i, and some Japanese ports.

The Oregon patrolled off the coast of Hong Kong in February 1906 to force the Chinese to buy American goods again. The Emperor of China gave in to President Theodore Roosevelt’s demands and the Oregon came home, only to be moth balled at Bremerton Washington. She was there for exactly five years, April 26, 1905 to April 26, 1911.

She rejoined the Pacific Fleet under command of Captain Charles F. Pond, but by this time was heavily out classed by newer ships. As part of the reserve, it was petitioned for her to lead the way through the Panama Canal when it opened in 1914. The war in Europe made any celebration of the opening unfeasible, but the USS Oregon made it to the 1915 Panama-Pacific Exposition in San Francisco. It did so again in 1916 serving as the review ship as the entire Pacific Fleet passed in review. 2

The United States’ entry into WWI saw the Oregon sent back to Bremerton where it was upgraded at the cost of $1 million. It was used as a training ship, where officers and men were taught seamanship, navigation, and gunnery to officers and men who soon be entering the war.

In October 1917, the Oregon acted as an escort ship to the transports that took soldiers to Siberia during the Bolshevik Revolution. After the failure of the “Siberian Adventure,” the Oregon returned to the United States where it was out of commission again. This time two thirds of the crew was affected by the 1919 Influenza.

In August 21 of the same year, President Woodrow Wilson and Secretary of the Navy Josephus Daniels, welcomed the Pacific Fleet home on the deck of the USS Oregon. But the reprieve was only temporary, she was decommissioned for the last time on October 4th, 1919.

On to Part Two – The End


Sternlicht, S. (n.d.). McKinley’s Bulldog: The Battleship Oregon (Book Club.). Nelson - Hall Chicago. Retrieved from http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B000NUL7JU/ref=as_li_tl?ie=UTF8&camp=1789&creative=390957&creativeASIN=B000NUL7JU&linkCode=as2&tag=ricktech-20&linkId=26ICCQQH7CMZTPMB
Ackley, L. A. (2014). San Francisco’s Jewel City: The Panama-Pacific International Exposition of 1915 (1st edition.). Berkeley, California: Heyday. Retrieved from http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/1597142921/ref=as_li_tl?ie=UTF8&camp=1789&creative=390957&creativeASIN=1597142921&linkCode=as2&tag=ricktech-20&linkId=B7HS56CZONFHJG4Z

Where to eat in Leavenworth with your dog

Where to eat in Leavenworth with your dog

No… not where to eat your dog! Where to eat WITH your dog. There are a limited number dining options in Leavenworth if you have your four footed friend along. All of them have outdoor patios, so they may not be pleasant places to eat about 75% of the time. Please update the list below if you know any more!

Argonaut Coffee – Espresso and Coffee

Der Hinterhof – Beer Hall with BBQ food

Fresh Burger Cafe – Gourmet burgers plus more

Munchen Haus – Premium sausages

The South – Urban bar food with a Latin flavor. GMO free and wholesome

Uncle Uli’s Pub – No menu

Dog Friendly Lodging in Leavenworth Washington

Dog Friendly Lodging in Leavenworth Washington

Leavenworth is a cool Bavarian themed town located in the Cascade mountains about two hours east of Seattle. During the summer its a great getaway location for weekend trips. During the winter its literally a Winter wonderland with a wonderful Christmas celebration and tons of winter sports nearby.

Dog Friendly Lodging in Leavenworth

Leash Laws in Leavenworth
As far as I can tell, all dogs must be on leashes at all times in Leavenworth. This includes on the hiking trails around town.

Dog Friendly Activities
How about going inter tubing down the Wenatchee River with your dog? Visit the Leavenworth Outdoor Center, dog tubes are only $10!

Leavenworth Pet Friendly Cabins

Bunk Haus – $15/night, per pet

Leavenworth Dog Friendly Hotels and Motels

Adventure Inn Leavenworth – $20/night, per dog, two pet friendly rooms available.

Alpine Rivers Inn – limited number of pet rooms available

Bavarian Ritz Hotel – $15/per dog, per a night

Best Western Plus Icicle Inn – $20/day, per pet limit two dogs. Cats, birds and other pets allowed at hotel discretion

Der Ritterhof – only one room is pet friendly, $20/night per pet

Fairbridge Inn & Suites Leavenworth – no information on website, call to check

Howard Johnson Express Leavenworth – $15/per pet, per night, limit two pets, limited 100 pounds combined weight

Sleeping Lady Mountain Resort – $30/stay per dog, limited rooms

Obertal Inn Leavenworth – $18/night

Leavenworth Dog Friendly Vacation Rentals
*NOTE* There seems to be a large number of Vacation Rentals around Leavenworth that are dog friendly. But they all seem to go through the same rental company. When I was checking, most of the links for properties were dead. So consider the below list to be incomplete. Please comment if you know anything different!

Dirty Face Lodge – $75/per stay

Icicle Haus – pets allowed

River dance Lodge – “pets considered” no further information

Dog Friendly Camping in Leavenworth
Pine Village KOA – Unspecified Pet Fee

Leavenworth Dog Friendly RV Resorts
Icicle River RV Resort – Limit 3 pets, must be on leash at all times

Map of Oregon’s Covered Bridges

Map of Oregon’s Covered Bridges

One of Oregon’s lasting legacies is the number of wooden covered bridges still in existence. Over 600 bridges existed at one time, but only a small fraction still exists. Of those left, a surprising number are still in useable condition and are driven over every day. Some have been removed from public right of ways, but are still walkable and have been turned into history lessons via interpretative signs mounted inside and around the bridge. All are actively being preserved by the state of Oregon, the county or city they exist in, and a large variety of preservation groups.

The Preserve Oregon Blog has a great article about preserving these historic treasures and the work and challenges that goes into doing so.

Information about bridges came from the Covered Bridge Society of Oregon
Included bridges are:
Antelope Creek
Belknap (McKenzie)
Cavitt (Peel)
Cedar Crossing
Coyote Creek (Swing Log, Battle Creek)
Drift Creek
Earnest (Mohawk River)
Fisher School
Foster (no longer exists)
Gallon House
Grave Creek
Hanna Bridge
Hoffman (Crabtree Creek)
Horse Creek
Hufford (Middle Fork Santiam River)
Irish Bend
Lake Creek (Nelson Mountain)
Larwood (Crabtree Creek)
Lost Creek
Milo Academy
Mitchell (Private Property)
Mosby Creek
Neal Lane
North Fork Yachats River
Office (Westfir)
Kewson (Pass) Creek
Parvin (Lost Creek)
Rock O’ the Range
Sandy Creek
Shimanek (Thomas Creek)
Stayton-Jordon (Jordon)
Wildcat Creek (Austa)

This list only includes currently existing bridges. I am interested in history and pictures of bridges that no longer exist. If you have any thing like that, feel free to post them below in the comments.

More Information:
Dorena Historical Society’s lost covered bridge list
Lost covered bridges of Lane County