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Lewis & Clark's Columbia River - "200 Years Later"
"Vancouver to Orchards to Sifton Streetcar Line, Vancouver, Washington"
Includes ... Vancouver ... Orchards ... Sifton ... Streetcar ... Trolley ...
Image, 2006, Mural, Fourth Plain, Orchards, click to enlarge
Click image to enlarge
Orchards mural, Sifton-Orchards Streetcar No.5. Image taken November 25, 2006.

A photograph in the Clark County Historical Museum's collection names this man as being George Wall.


Vancouver to Orchards to Sifton Streetcar Line ...
According to Battle Ground's The Reflector (October 15, 2003), the Sifton-Orchards Streetcar (also known as the Orchards-Sifton Streetcar or Orchards-Sifton Trolley) use to make 10 stops from Vancouver to Orchards to Sifton. One of the stops included the Orchards Feed Mill, the oldest building still standing in the Orchards area.

A route map in David Warren Freece's "A history of the street railway systems of Vancouver, Washington, 1889-1926" (1984, Master's Thesis, Portland State University) shows a route of the line, beginning in Vancouver on 33rd Street (location of the "Car Barns") east of St. Johns Blvd., crossing Burnt Bridge Creek to Falk (at Falk Road) and then to Stapleton (at Stapleton Road). From there the line curved northeast, the stops being Sparks, Jaggy, Roney, Bonzo, Hartfield, Parkway, Orchards, Gher (at Gher Road), and ending at Sifton. The tracks were located to the north of Fourth Plain Blvd. Today Washington State Route 500 follows nearly the same route.

The terminus of the streetcar line was the small community of Sifton.

"Sifton, terminus of the Oregon-Washington Corporation's electric line from Vancouver, in the southern part of Clarke County. It was named about 1908 for Doctor Sifton, of Portland, Oregon, one of the original stockholders in the company." ... [Edmond S. Meany, 1923, Origin of Washington Geographic Names, University of Washington Press.]

According to Pat Jollota in "Downtown Vancouver" (2004):

p.60 ... "In 1905 the Lewis and Clark Centennial Exposition opened in Portland. ... Work had already begun on the railroad bridge, and the North Bank line was under construction. At the same time Vancouver began laying tracks for a streetcar line that would reach Orchards and Sifton; it opened on September 26, 1908."

p.73 ... "The Orchards Sifton streetcar line opened with great fanfare on September 26, 1908. The route from Vancouver roughly followed today's State Route 500. The line lasted until 1925, carrying not only passengers, but freight from the river to Orchards."

However David Warren Freece's "A history of the street railway systems of Vancouver, Washington, 1889-1926" gives 1910 as the year the line opened to Sifton (1984, Master's Thesis, Portland State University).

"In July [1908] the Vancouver Traction Company received permission from the county commissioners to extend its line beyond Vancouver Heights, east to St John Road. A site was chose there to build its car barns ... By September 1, 1908, the line was completed through the city. ... To build the line to Orchards, the Vancouver Suburban Railway Company was incorporated on June 22, 1909. ... On Sunday, March 24, 1910, the line was opened from the car barns to Jaggy Road (now N.E. Andresen Road). ... On May 15th the line to Orchards was officially opened. ... The street railway that began operation in 1908, and was extended to Sifton in 1910 ..."

According to the "Ninth Annual Report of the Public Service Commission of Washington to the Governor" (1919, State of Washington), the Vancouver - Orchards - Sifton line was 5.52 miles in length from the eastern edge of the Vancouver city limits, and 8.87 miles in length from the Interstate bridge.

"The North Coast Power Company is a corporation organized and existing under the laws of the State of Washington and wons, controls, operates and manages a street railway and interurban railway system for hire in the city of Vancouver, Washington, and vicinity thereof in Clarke county. ...

The line of railway known as the Sifton line ... extends from the city limits of Vancouver eastward to the station of Sifton, a distance of 5.52 miles from the east city limits, from said city limits into the city of Vancouver a distance of 3.35 miles, making a total length of line of 8.87 miles from Sifton station to the approach of the interstate bridge in Vancouver."

  • Vancouver ... 0.0 miles
  • City Limits ... 3.35 miles
  • Falk ... 3.71 miles
  • Stapleton ... 4.36 miles
  • Sparks ... 4.75 miles
  • Jaggy ... 5.29 miles
  • Roney ... 5.75 miles
  • Bonzo ... 6.15 miles
  • Hartfield ... 6.62 miles
  • Park Way ... 7.35 miles
  • Orchards ... 7.50 miles
  • Gher ... 7.92 miles
  • Sifton ... 8.87 miles

March 18, 1909 ...
CARLINE IS EXTENDED
Vancouver Trolley System Starts for Orchard.
Completion of Railway to Sifton, Seven Miles Out, Is Set for November 15.

"VANCOUVER, Wash., Oct. 17. -- (Special.) -- The first bridge on the first suburban electric line extension being built by the Clark County Development Company is now rapidly nearing completion, and the day when one may get on the trolley at the foot of Washington street, at the Columbia River ferry, or at the depot, and ride out into the country, seven miles, to the temporary terminus, Sifton, is set not later than November 15.

A piling bridge now being constructed is the largest on the extension, and is 864 feet in length and about 75 feet from the ground at the highest point. The bridge spans Burnt Bridge Creek, a quarter of a mile outside of the city limits, and the same distance from the present terminus of the streetcar system. It is being constructed by W.D. Smith, the contract price being $8000.

A line to Orchards a few months ago was only a dream, and many laughed at such an idea, but the people along the right of way donated enough ground for a right of way, and also gave a bonus of $10,000. The moment that the bonus was assured work on the line started, and a large force of men has been busy since, clearing the right of way, grading and laying ties and steel. The company predicts that the line will be a paying proposition from the first year.

The extension taps a rich farming and fruitraising country and many persons living in the city are buying small farms and acre tracts along the line, and will live there and carry on their business here."


Source:    Morning Oregonian, March 18, 1909, courtesy Historic Oregon Newspapers Archives, University of Oregon Libraries, 2017.


March 14, 1910 ...
CLARK RAILWAY BUILDING
Line to Sifton Completed for Six Miles From Vancouver.

"VANCOUVER, Wash., March 13. -- (Special.) -- More than two miles of the Clark County Suburban Railway has been completed on the line to Sifton, six miles east of Vancouver. This stretch is being used by work trains, and all material for the remaining four miles of road is being moved to the front from the railroad yards.

The bridge across Burnt Bridge Creek has been completed at a cost of $8000, and much grading has been done on the right of way from the Jaggy road to Sifton. Between Orchards and Sifton, one mile, the line is graded and the ties laid.

A regular schedule will be established in April on the two and one-half miles completed to the Jaggy road. The line will be completed to Sifton soon. Thirty men are being employed by the company.

When completed, this will be the first suburban electric line in Clark County, or Southwestern Washington."


Source:    Morning Oregonian, March 14, 1910, courtesy Historic Oregon Newspapers Archives, University of Oregon Libraries, 2017.


Vancouver Tapestry ...
During the last week in August 2017, a 108-foot-long, 28-inch high tapestry was on display at the Vancouver Barracks. This 70-panel tapestry, finished in 2005, depicts the history of Vancouver, Washington. Panel 39 is about the Vancouver to Orchards to Sifton Streetcar line.
[More]

Image, 2017, Vancouver, Washington, click to enlarge
Click image to enlarge
"Streetcar", Vancouver Tapestry, Vancouver Barracks, Fort Vancouver, Washington. Image taken August 24, 2017.


Freece, 1984 Master's Thesis ...
"In July [1908] the Vancouver Traction Company received permission from the county commissioners to extend its line beyond Vancouver Heights, east to St John Road. A site was chose there to build its car barns where the street cars could be maintained and stored when not in use. (The building the company erected for this purpose still stands at the northwest corner of Thirty-third Street and St John Road.)

By September 1, 1908, the line was completed through the city. ...

To build the line to Orchards, the Vancouver Suburban Railway Company was incorporated on June 22, 1909. ...

With the financial arrangements settled, the task of building the line soon started. First the route had to be carefully selected. From the car barns the line was to run due east, crossing Burnt Bridge Creek at about one-quarter mile, continuing east for another mile and then turning northerly for the remainder of the distance. For most of this distance the line was to run just a few hundred feet north of Fourth Plain Road. The rights of way were acquired from the land owners for one dollar each in most cases.

The construction work began in early August about two miles east of the car barns. Fifteen thousand ties were ordered from the Harvey Milling Company but as these could not be delivered until the bridge was completed across Burnt Bridge Creek, another 3,500 were ordered for the east end of the line so that the absence of them would not restrict the construction. The contract for the 800 foot bridge was awarded ...

On Sunday, March 24, 1910, the line was opened from the car barns to Jaggy Road (now N.E. Andresen Road) and many people crowded the cars to try it. Unfortunately, there was a problem with a lack of power and many of those who came to ride were not able to do so while others were several hours on the ride.

On May 15th the line to Orchards was officially opened. A forty minute service was instituted and the work on the line to Sifton was continued with diligence. This construction was delayed due to a hold-up in the delivery of the trolley wire, but on June 30th service to Sifton began. Between the car barns and the end of the line a number of regular stops were established. Most of them were named after the land owners, upon whose property they were located, and the first one after the car bars was the Falk Station, followed by Stapleton, Jamison, Sparks, Jaggy, Roney, Bonzo, Hartfield, Parkway, Orchards, Gehr and Sifton. (These were to vary a bit through the years.) The fare to ride the street car from the Vancouver ferry to the end of the line at Sifton was fifteen cents, one-way. ...

The Portland Electric Power Company operated the line in the winter and spring of 1926. At the end of the summer, with dim prospects of the street railway every producing a profit, it was decided to discontinue the system. ...

A hearing was held on October 4th in which citizens were given an opportunity to express their views on the proposed abandonment. At the meeting, two merchants, one each from Sifton and Orchards, raised the strongest objections. They each had a feed store adjoining the railway tracks and were able to have their feed, primarily cracked corn, shipped directly to them from Portland at a cheap rate. ... If the street railway was discontinued, the two merchants would lose their competitive advantage, and would have to reorient their stores to the roads. ... The commissioners conclusion was ... "a public utility cannot be compelled to continue public service at a loss." Therefore, the company was granted permission to abandon its line. ... The final run to Sifton was made on October 11 ...

After the system ceased operation, the car barn at Thirty-third and St John Boulevard was used as a bus barn for many years. Now it houses an auto body shop. The trestle on Burnt Bridge Creek has long disappeared, but one can follow parts of the old right of way on Nicholson Road and N.E. Rosewood Avenue. In Orchards the feed store that was built alongside the railway tracks still stands [Note: other information says the Feed Store was built in 1889, see below.]. Kerr Avenue runs through Sifton; both community and street were named after principals of the Clarke County Development Company. Physical signs of the railway exist, but one has to look for them carefully. ...

The street railway that began operation in 1908, and was extended to Sifton in 1910, was not considered a large system as it never exceeded fifteen miles of track. ... The line to Sifton paralleled Fourth Plain Road, which had been in use long before the railway. Consequently the railway only enhanced the development of that area. ...


Source:    David Warren Freece, 1984, "A history of the street railway systems of Vancouver, Washington, 1889-1926", Master's Thesis, Portland State University.


Route Map ...

Image, 2006, Map, click to enlarge
Click image to enlarge
Detail, ca.1922, Clark County map showing the western section of the Vancouver-Orchards-Sifton Streetcar line, with stops (red). Burnt Bridge Creek is in blue. Original map courtesy "Rootsweb.com" website, 2017.
Image, 2006, Map, click to enlarge
Click image to enlarge
Detail, ca.1922, Clark County map showing the eastern section of the Vancouver-Orchards-Sifton Streetcar line, with stops (red). Original map courtesy "Rootsweb.com" website, 2017.


Vancouver to Orchards to Sifton Streetcar Line, etc.

  • Mile Post (MP) 0.0 ... Vancouver
  • MP 3.35 ... City Limits
    • "Car Barn", 33rd and St. Johns
    • NE 33rd Street ...
    • Burnt Bridge Creek ...
  • MP 3.71 ... Falk
    • Falk Road ...
    • George A. Falk ...
    • Clark County Fair ...
    • Bagley Downs ...
  • MP 4.36 ... Stapleton
  • MP 4.75 ... Sparks
    • Jerusha Sparks ...
  • MP 5.29 ... Jaggy
    • John Jaggy ...
    • Andresen Road ...
  • MP 5.75 ... Roney
  • MP 6.15 ... Bonzo
    • A.M. Bonzo ...
  • MP 6.62 ... Hartfield
  • MP 7.35 ... Park Way (Parkway)
    • Orchards Park ...
  • MP 7.50 ... Orchards
    • Orchards ...
    • Orchards Feed Mill ...
    • Rosewood Avenue ...
  • MP 7.92 ... Gher
    • Gher Road ...
    • Joseph G. Gher ...
  • MP 8.87 ... Sifton


MP 3.35 ... City Limits

"Car Barn", 33rd and St. Johns ...
Today's ABRA Auto Body Shop building facing St. Johns and on the corner of 33rd Street was once the Vancouver to Orchards to Sifton line's trolley car barn. According to Freece (1984, Master's Thesis):

"After the system ceased operation, the car barn at Thirty-third and St John Boulevard was used as a bus barn for many years. Now it houses an auto body shop."

Image, 2017, Vancouver to Orchards to Sifton Streetcar, click to enlarge
Click image to enlarge
33rd St. view, former streetcar "car barn", today ABRA Auto Body, Vancouver, Washington. Northwest corner of 33rd and St. Johns. Image taken April 13, 2017.
Image, 2017, Vancouver to Orchards to Sifton Streetcar, click to enlarge
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St. Johns Blvd. view, former streetcar "car barn", today ABRA Auto Body, Vancouver, Washington. Northwest corner of 33rd and St. Johns. Image taken April 21, 2017.
Image, 2017, Vancouver to Orchards to Sifton Streetcar, click to enlarge
Click image to enlarge
Detail, 1959, aerial photo, northwest corner (circled) of St. Johns Blvd. (diagonal) and E. 33rd St. (east/west), Vancouver, Washington. View showing the old Vancouver - Orchards - Sifton "car barn". Original image (P02.001.1129/AP00049.tif) courtesy Clark County Historical Museum Archives and Washington State University Vancouver Library, downloaded April 2017.


NE 33rd Street ...
From the car barn, the old Vancouver - Orchards - Sifton streetcar line headed east along today's NE 33rd Street to Burnt Bridge Creek where it crossed the creek on a no-longer-in-existence trestle, connecting on the other side to today's Nicholson Road.

Image, 2017, Vancouver, Washington, click to enlarge
Click image to enlarge
NE 33rd Street heading east towards Burnt Bridge Creek, Vancouver, Washington. Image taken August 24, 2017.


Burnt Bridge Creek ...
According to "The Columbian" website (2017, "Names in Clark County"):

"Burnt Bridge Creek ... A creek of many names. At one time, when a bridge crossed the creek at 4th Plain, it was called Bridge Creek. Then the bridge burned. In the 1850s, it was also called Stenegierís Creek, after a Hudsonís Bay employee on whose land the creek ran. In 1865, it appears on the maps as Marble Creek, for Ansil Marble, on whose land it then lay. However, by 1885, it appears as Burnt Bridge Creek. The stream was Vancouverís primary water source until the cityís wells were dug. ."

According to Freece (1984, Master's Thesis):

"After the system ceased operation, the car barn at Thirty-third and St John Boulevard was used as a bus barn for many years. Now it houses an auto body shop. The trestle on Burnt Bridge Creek has long disappeared, but one can follow parts of the old right of way on Nicholson Road and N.E. Rosewood Avenue."

Image, 2017, Vancouver to Orchards to Sifton Streetcar, click to enlarge
Click image to enlarge
Detail, 1959, aerial photo, Burnt Bridge Creek and Bagley Downs, Vancouver, Washington. View showing Burnt Bridge Creek, NE 33rd St. (west side of Burnt Bridge Creek) and Nicholson Road (east/west, on east side of Burnt Bridge Creek), Falk Road (north/south on the right) and Bagley Downs. NE 33rd St. and Nicholson Road is the route of the old Vancouver - Orchards - Sifton streetcar line. Original image (P02.001.1153/AP00057.tif) courtesy Clark County Historical Museum Archives and Washington State University Vancouver Library, downloaded April 2017.
Image, 2017, Vancouver to Orchards to Sifton Streetcar, click to enlarge
Click image to enlarge
East end of 33rd Street, at Burnt Bridge Creek, Vancouver, Washington. Image taken April 21, 2017.
Image, 2017, Vancouver to Orchards to Sifton Streetcar, click to enlarge
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East end of 33rd Street, trail down to Burnt Bridge Creek, Vancouver, Washington. Image taken April 21, 2017.


Nicholson Road ...
According to Freece (1984, Master's Thesis):

"After the system ceased operation ... The trestle on Burnt Bridge Creek has long disappeared, but one can follow parts of the old right of way on Nicholson Road and N.E. Rosewood Avenue."

Image, 2017, Vancouver, Washington, click to enlarge
Click image to enlarge
Nicholson Road, heading west towards Burnt Bridge Creek, Vancouver, Washington. Image taken June 4, 2017.
Image, 2017, Vancouver, Washington, click to enlarge
Click image to enlarge
Nicholson Road dead end, east of Burnt Bridge Creek, Vancouver, Washington. Image taken June 4, 2017.
Image, 2017, Vancouver, Washington, click to enlarge
Click image to enlarge
Bike path to Burnt Bridge Creek, east side of Burnt Bridge Creek at Nicholson Road dead end, Vancouver, Washington. Image taken June 4, 2017.


MP 3.71 ... Falk

Falk Road ...
Falk Road, also known as NE 42nd Avenue, runs north south and was named after the Falk family who held Donation Land Claims (DLC) on property the road ran through.

According to "The Columbian" website (2017, "Names in Clark County"):

"Falk ... C.H. Falk donated 10 acres for a fairground on Fourth Plain Road, near the road that now carries his name. The Clark County fair was located there for awhile; then the area was used for a racetrack for horses and dogs called Bagley Downs. People who wanted to go to the fair or the races took the streetcar to Falk, a station on the edge of Mr. Falkís property, at about where SR 500 is today. The name stayed on the map for about 15 years after the railway stopped running."

Image, 2017, Vancouver, Washington, click to enlarge
Click image to enlarge
Falk and Nicholson Roads junction, looking at southwest corner, Vancouver, Washington. Image taken June 4, 2017.
Image, 2017, Vancouver to Orchards to Sifton Streetcar, click to enlarge
Click image to enlarge
Nicholson Road at Falk Road, looking east down Nicholson, Vancouver, Washington. Image taken August 24, 2017.


George A. Falk ...
The U.S. Bureau of Land Management's General Land Office (GLO) Records database (2017) shows George A. Falk being granted title to 160 acres of T1N R3E, Section 14, on June 25, 1900 (1862 Homestead EntryOriginal).

Image, 2017, Vancouver, Washington, click to enlarge
Click image to enlarge
Falk/42nd junction with State Route 500, Vancouver, Washington. The Falk/42nd junction with SR500 is less than 1/4 mile north of the location of the historic streetcar line. View looking to the southwest. Image taken July 4, 2017.
Image, 2017, Vancouver, Washington, click to enlarge
Click image to enlarge
Falk/42nd junction with State Route 500, Vancouver, Washington. The Falk/42nd junction with SR500 is less than 1/4 mile north of the location of the historic streetcar line. View looking to the northeast. Image taken August 24, 2017.


Clark County Fair ...
According to Freece (1984, Masters Thesis):

"The Clarke County Fair Association determined to take advantage of the interurban line shortly after it began operating. In the spring of 1911, ten acres were purchased on the Falk tract, east of Burnt Bridge Creek, and developed into a fairgrounds. The Washington - Oregon Corporation constructed a loop through the fairgrounds to facilitate the loading and unloading of passengers, and during the fair maintained a service from the ferry to the site every twenty minutes. The 1912 fair was quite successful for the railway but, according to railway manager George W. Ford, the 1913 one was lackluster and did not attract nearly as many people. He attributed this to the fact that the fair manager for this second year was a preacher who had "cut out everthing he could of a sporting nature, which injured attendance to a great extend." Nevertheless fair week proved a profitable time for the railway."

Harvest Show Folk Buy Land.

"VANCOUVER, Wash., June 20. -- (Special.) -- The Clark County Harvest Show Association will have 24 acres of land, along the trolley line to Sifton, instead of ten acres, as first planned. The price paid for the land will be $375 an acre. About $10,000 of the capital stock of the association has been sold, leaving $5000 more of which to dispose."


Source:    Morning Oregonian, June 21, 1911, courtesy Historic Oregon Newspapers Archives, University of Oregon Libraries, 2017.



Bagley Downs ...
According to "The Columbian" website (2017, "Names in Clark County"):

"Bagley Downs ... Bert Bagley Jr. built a race track on his dairy farm at Fourth Plain Boulevard and Falk Road to spice up the Clark County Fair that made its home there until 1928. When the fair moved north, Bagley continued to race horses, and eventually dogs, to great controversy."

Image, 2017, Vancouver to Orchards to Sifton Streetcar, click to enlarge
Click image to enlarge
Detail, 1959, aerial photo, Nicholson Road, Falk Road, and Bagley Downs, Vancouver, Washington. View showing Nicholson Road (upper road), Falk Road (vertical road), Bagley Downs (racetrack), and Plomondon Street (diagonal road, lower right). Burnt Bridge Creek is just visible in lower left of image. Nicholson Road is the route of the old Vancouver - Orchards - Sifton streetcar line. Original image (P02.001.1153/AP00057.tif) courtesy Clark County Historical Museum Archives and Washington State University Vancouver Library, downloaded July 2017.
Image, 2017, Vancouver to Orchards to Sifton Streetcar, click to enlarge
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Bagley Downs Neighborhood, Vancouver, Washington. Image taken July 4, 2017.
Image, 2017, Vancouver, Washington, click to enlarge
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Eleanor Roosevelt Elementary School, Vancouver, Washington. Once the location of the Bagley Downs Racetrack. Image taken August 24, 2017.
Image, 2017, Vancouver, Washington, click to enlarge
Click image to enlarge
Eleanor Roosevelt Elementary School, Vancouver, Washington. Once the location of the Bagley Downs Racetrack. Image taken August 24, 2017.


MP 4.36 ... Stapleton

NE Stapleton Road, also known as NE 54th Avenue, was presumably named after two prominent Stapleton brothers who were involved in shaping Vancouver in the late 1800s and early 1900s. George W. Stapleton, a lawyer, served three terms as Mayor of Vancouver in the 1880s before moving to Oregon and eventually becoming a Judge. James P. Stapleton, George's younger brother, worked in his brother's law office in downtown Vancouver before branching himself into local politics.

"Judge [George W.] Stapleton is a lawyer of the old school, having been admitted to the bar in 1886. He engaged in the practice of law at Goldendale, Wash., until 1890, when he moved to Vancouver Wash., and formed a partnership with A.L. Miller, then District Attorney of Clarke County.

During his residence in Vancouver he served three terms as Mayor. In 1895 he formed the partnership of Moody, Doovert and STapleton in this city and moved to Portland in April, 1989."


Source:    "Morning Oregonian", AUgust 30, 1917, courtesy Historic Oregon Newspaper Archives, University of Oregon Libraries, 2017.


Image, 2017, Vancouver, Washington, click to enlarge
Click image to enlarge
Stapleton/54th junction with State Route 500, Vancouver, Washington. The Stapleton/54th junction with SR500 is less than 1/4 mile north of the location of the historic streetcar line. View looking to the southwest. Image taken June 30, 2017.


MP 4.75 ... Sparks

Jerusha Sparks ...
The U.S. Bureau of Land Management's General Land Office (GLO) Records database (2017) shows Jerusha Sparks (and Heirs of Andrew Bolen and Jerusha Bolen) being granted title to 73.78 acres of T2N R1E, Sections 16 and 22, on November 21, 1881 (1850 Oregon-Donation Act).


MP 5.29 ... Jaggy

John Jaggy ...
The U.S. Bureau of Land Management's General Land Office (GLO) Records database (2017) shows John Jaggy (with Henry B. Lamb and Michael Bear) being granted title to 160 acres of T1N R4E, Section 2, on August 3, 1866 (1855 Scrip Warrant Act) and John Jaggy being granted title to 80 acres of T3N R1E, Section 14 on August 1, 1872 (1820 Sale-Cash Entry).


Andresen Road ...
The Jaggy streetcar stop was located on today's Andresen Road. According to "The Columbian" website (2017, "Names in Clark County"):

"Andresen Road ... Originally 65th Avenue, this road took its name from J.T.W. Andresen and James O. Andresen, father and son, who had property on either side of the road. James Andresen was a well known veterinarian and member of the Savings and Loan board in Vancouver. He died in 1973."


MP 5.75 ... Roney

P. Rooney ...
A Clark County plat map, ca.1922, shows the Vancouver - Orchards - Sifton streetcar line crossing the property of P. Rooney (T2N R2E, SW corner of Section 17, original map courtesy "Rootsweb.com", 2017).


MP 6.15 ... Bonzo

A.M. Bonzo ...
A Clark County plat map, ca.1922, shows the Vancouver - Orchards - Sifton streetcar line going through the property of A.M. Bonzo (T2N R2E, SE corner of Section 17, original map courtesy "Rootsweb.com", 2017).


MP 6.62 ... Hartfield


MP 7.35 ... Park Way (Parkway)

Orchards Park ...
[More]

Image, 2017, Orchards Park, Clark County, Washington, click to enlarge
Click image to enlarge
View looking southwest, probable old streetcar route through Orchards Park, Clark County, Washington. Trail runs from Orchard Park's northeast corner to its southwest corner. Image taken May 3, 2017.
Image, 2017, Orchards Park, Clark County, Washington, click to enlarge
Click image to enlarge
View looking northeast, probable old streetcar route through Orchards Park, Clark County, Washington. Trail runs from Orchard Park's northeast corner to its southwest corner. Image taken May 25, 2017.
Image, 2017, Vancouver to Orchards to Sifton Streetcar, click to enlarge
Click image to enlarge
Detail, 1959, aerial photo, today's Orchards Park (yellow circle, treed area, left) and the path of the Vancouver - Orchards - Sifton streetcar tracks (cutting diagonally through park area), Vancouver, Washington. The Orchards Feed Mill is the red circle. Original image (P02.001.1128/AP00084.tif) courtesy Clark County Historical Museum Archives and Washington State University Vancouver Library, downloaded April 2017.


MP 7.50 ... Orchards

Orchards ...
According to "The Columbian" website (2017, "Names in Clark County"):
[More]

"Orchards ... It was formerly called Fourth Plain. When the Hudsonís Bay Co. First occupied Fort Vancouver, they numbered their grazing plains consecutively, 1-6, from their headquarters. The Orchards area was in the fourth plain. The residents of the area wanted a name that would identify them alone. There were great tracts of fruit trees there, so they chose the name Orchards in 1904."


Orchards Feed Mill ...
[More]

Image, 2006, Orchards Feed Mill, Orchards, click to enlarge
Click image to enlarge
Orchards Feed Mill, Orchards, Washington. Image taken November 25, 2006.

View shows the mill before the re-alignment of Covington Road. Rosewood Road, heading east, is on the right.
Image, 2017, Vancouver to Orchards to Sifton Streetcar, click to enlarge
Click image to enlarge
Detail, 1959, aerial photo, Orchards Feed Mill (circled) and the path of the Vancouver - Orchards - Sifton streetcar tracks (heading right, now NE Rosewood Ave.), Vancouver, Washington. Original image (P02.001.1128/AP00084.tif) courtesy Clark County Historical Museum Archives and Washington State University Vancouver Library, downloaded April 2017.


Rosewood Avenue ...
According to Freece (1984, Master's Thesis):

"After the system ceased operation, the car barn at Thirty-third and St John Boulevard was used as a bus barn for many years. Now it houses an auto body shop. The trestle on Burnt Bridge Creek has long disappeared, but one can follow parts of the old right of way on Nicholson Road and N.E. Rosewood Avenue."

Image, 2017, Rosewood Avenue, Orchards, Clark County, Washington, click to enlarge
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NE Rosewood Avenue sign, Orchards, Clark County, Washington. Image taken May 3, 2017.
Image, 2017, Rosewood Avenue, Orchards, Clark County, Washington, click to enlarge
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Orchards Feed Mill and NE Rosewood Avenue, looking east, Orchards, Clark County, Washington. Image taken May 3, 2017.


MP 7.92 ... Gher

Gher Road ...
According to "The Columbian" website (2017, "Names in Clark County"):

"Gehr: The name of a station stop on the streetcar which ran from Vancouver to Orchards survives in Gehr Road, which crosses SR 500 at 112th Street. Named for Joseph Gehr who was born in Pennsylvania and came to Washington in 1852. Once he reached Clark County, he and his family took out a land claim that was later purchased by Frederick Proebstel. Joseph Gehr served in the Clark County Mounted Rifles, First Regiment of Washington Volunteers, during the Indian Wars of 1855-56."

Joseph G. Gher ...
According to the Bureau of Land Management's General Land Office (GLO) database (2017), Joseph G. Gher was granted title to 162.85 acres of T2N R2E, Sections 9, 10, and 15, on December 22, 1865 (1850 Oregon-Donation Act).

The 1888 Clarke County plat map (Library of Congress, 2017) shows the location of the "J.F. Gher" DLC being located within the southwestern edge of the Fourth Plain. Often the name "Gher" is seen misspelled as "Gehr", as found on the ca.1922 Clark County plat map ("rootsweb.com" website, 2017), the "Muster Roll of Capt. William Strong's Company (A), 1855, the 1984 Masters Thesis of D.W. Freece, and "The Columbian" article "Names In Clark County".

The "Muster Roll of Capt. William Strong's Company (A), found in "Trail Breakers" (vol.38, July 2011 to June 2012, Clark County Genealogical Society, Vancouver, Washington) lists:

"Gehr, Joseph E., (another list has "Joseph E. Gher"), Private, 24, Horse $150/35 reshipment, Horse & Equipments."

Capt. William Strong's Company (A) was the Washington Mounted Rifles, Washington Territory, volunteers commanded by Capt. William Strong, "called into the service of the United States by Maj. G.I. Rains 4th U.S. Infy Commaning Columbia River and Puget Sound District and by Acting Governor C.H. Mason of Washington Territory at Fort Vancouver W.T. ... on the 27th day of October 1855 to serve for the term of Three Months from the data of Enrollment, unless sooner discharged. The Company was organized by Capt. William Strong at Fort Vancouver, in the month of October 1855."

Middle initial ??? --- E., F., or G., ???



MP 8.87 ... Sifton

Sifton ...
The terminus of the Vancouver - Orchards - Sifton streetcar line was the small community of Sifton, a community created by the developers of the streetcar line.

"Sifton, terminus of the Oregon-Washington Corporation's electric line from Vancouver, in the southern part of Clarke County. It was named about 1908 for Doctor Sifton, of Portland, Oregon, one of the original stockholders in the company." ... [Edmond S. Meany, 1923, Origin of Washington Geographic Names, University of Washington Press.]

According to "The Columbian" website (2017, "Names in Clark County"):

"Sifton ... In 1908, this area east of Orchards was named for Dr. Sifton, of Portland, who was a dentist and an important stockholder in the local power company."

D.W. Freece, in his 1984 Masters Thesis gives more information:

"The Clarke County Development Company was, as its name suggests, real estate development firm. For $30,000 it acquired about 180 acres of land in the Calder donation land claim two miles east of Orchards from Horation N. Price and A.R. Pickett with the view of developing it and extending the railway to it. ... It was decided to name the community after the company's president, Sifton. The streets were laid out and named after various board members: Kerr, Hall, Alvadore avenues, and Moulton, Russell and James streets."


RAILWAY LAND

The Clark County Development Co., owner of the electric railway system now operating at Vancouver, Wash., is extending its line to its new townsite of

SIFTON

a short distance from Vancouver, and this extension will be completed and the line running to Sifton about November 15th.

The streets of Sifton are graded, and you can have electric lights there, or on your garden tracts, if you want them.

In addition to the lots and acre tracts in the townsite, the Railway Company has platted its property surrounding the townsite into 5 and 10-acre tracts. These tracts are known as Sifton Garden Tracts-- all cultivated, and there is no better land outdoors.

SIFTON

is right in the heart of the fruit center of Clark County, and a large part of the

Garden Tracts

is of the finest beaver dam, which paid $750 an acre in onions this year.

The Vancouver Electric Cars now connect with the Portland Railway, Light & Power Co.'s cars, and also with N. P. trains at Vancouver, and when the line is competed you can go from Second and Stark streets, Portland, to Sifton in 1 hour and 5 minutes.

The Railway Company authorizes us to make terms to suit purchaser on deferred payments.

Lots $100 and Up
Garden Tracts $250 and
$300 an Acre

ONE-THIRD DOWN

Let us show you the property at our expense.


Murphy & Caswell
230 Stark St.
Vancouver Office, 712 Main St.



Source:    "The Sunday Oregonian", October 17, 1909, courtesy Historic Oregon Newspapers Archives, University of Oregon Libraries, 2017.

Image, 2017, Sifton, Clark County, Washington, click to enlarge
Click image to enlarge
NE Kerr Road and NE 134th Avenue Signs, Sifton, Clark County, Washington. Image taken May 25, 2017.
Image, 2017, Sifton, Clark County, Washington, click to enlarge
Click image to enlarge
NE Kerr Road and NE 134th Avenue Signs, Sifton, Clark County, Washington. Image taken May 25, 2017.
Image, 2017, Sifton, Clark County, Washington, click to enlarge
Click image to enlarge
NE Kerr Road, looking east, Sifton, Clark County, Washington. Image taken May 25, 2017.
Image, 2017, Sifton, Clark County, Washington, click to enlarge
Click image to enlarge
NE Kerr Road, looking west, Sifton, Clark County, Washington. Image taken May 25, 2017.


From the Journals of Lewis and Clark ...

Clark, ...
 




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*River Miles [RM] are approximate, in statute miles, and were determined from USGS topo maps, obtained from NOAA nautical charts, or obtained from the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers website, 2003

Sources:    Battle Ground The Reflector, October 15, 2003 edition;    Clark County Historical Museum Photographs Collection, courtesy Washington State University Libraries, 2017;    "The Columbian" website, 2017, "Names in Clark County History";    Freece, D.W., Masters Thesis, 1984, "A history of the street railway systems of Vancouver, Washington, 1889-1926", Portland State University;    Jollota, P., 2004, Downtown Vancouver, Arcadia Publishing;    Library of Congress website, 2017;    Meany, E.S., 1923, Origin of Washington Geographic Names, University of Washington Press    "Ninth Annual Report of the Public Service Commission of Washington to The Governor", 1919, State of Washington;    "Rootsweb.com" website, 2017;    U.S. Bureau of Land Management's General Land Office (GLO) Records database, 2017;   

All Lewis and Clark quotations from Gary Moulton editions of the Lewis and Clark Journals, University of Nebraska Press, all attempts have been made to type the quotations exactly as in the Moulton editions, however typing errors introduced by this web author cannot be ruled out; location interpretation from variety of sources, including this website author.
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July 2017