Loggers from the Great Lakes region reached the Pacific Northwest in the late nineteenth century. They logged the virgin forests that blanketed the coastal mountains and the lower valleys of the Cascades. They built sawmills and constructed wooden flumes to carry log sections down the steep cliffs of the gorge. By the dawn of the twentieth century, timber was king.
By then, most gorge communities were served by stearnwheelers, railroads, or both. Due in part to the steep terrain, logging operations in the gorge were smaller in scale than the vast projects in British Columbia, in the Oregon Coast Range, and on Washington's Olympic Peninsula. Commercial logging for export began in 1848 at Oregon City, the overland terminus of the Oregon Trail. (Durbin 17)
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4. History >