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Looking Back on September 30, 2018

History Mystery

Cary Lowe, Kathy Shebley, Kevin Moynahan, Terray Harmon, Mike Kilkenny, Don Hansen, Gary Conley, and Mary Batty all contributed to this report.

Last week’s History Mystery, above, was located in the online archive of the Columbia Gorge Discovery Center. The image was scanned from an 8- by 10-inch print credited to the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers. Information on the back of the print said, “1964 John Day Dam, oblique aerial.” The print was donated to the Center by Dan Spatz, former managing editor at The Chronicle.

The navigational locks and fish ladder on the north (Washington) side of the Columbia River and the spillway now located between the locks and the powerhouse can be seen at the bottom of the photograph.

A coffer, or temporary dam, surrounds the construction area on the south (Oregon) side of the dam where construction of the powerhouse is underway.

Cary Lowe and Kathy Shebley both noted that the dam is recognizable from the “guillotine gate” on the down stream entrance to the navigation lock.

“My dad was a carpenter who worked on several of the dams built in the Northwest,” wrote Kathy Shebley of The Dalles. “My dad and my brother both worked on that project,” she said of the John Day Dam.

Gary Conley noticed that at the time the photograph was taken, the railroad had not yet been relocated.

For comparison, below is the dam pictured in 1968 from a similar angle, also taken by the Corps.

20 years ago – 1998

Owners of a controversial house set atop a Skamania County bluff were ordered by the Columbia River Gorge Commission Tuesday to participate in the hearing that will decide the fate of their dream home...

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