April 15, 2017
In regard to the recent History Mystery showing the Celilo Canal being flooded in 1948, Casey Roberts submitted a picture, at right, showing the ill-fated Georgie Burton, which was wrecked during the flood.
He wrote, “The Georgie Burton was brought up the Columbia to The Dalles with considerable fanfare. Reportedly, several famous Columbia riverboat captains took turns piloting the ship to The Dalles, where it was slated to become a museum. Unfortunately, through bad timing, bad luck, or incompetence, the money to convert the ship was not raised and the ship was taken up by the locks near Celilo, where she languished until she was wrecked by the waters of the flood of 1948.
“The flood of 1948 was the second largest flood on record for the Columbia River. The flood level was recorded as nearly 23' with 16' being flood stage. The flood is also known as the Vanport flood because a levee gave way on May 30, 1948, near Portland and the flood waters rapidly destroyed the community of Vanport, killing at least 16 people. (The largest flood recorded on the Columbia was the 1894 flood at 34'.)
“As a 9 year old, I helped fill and place sandbags along west Second Street near where the post office is now located. The sandbags were not all that successful in holding back the waters, but I don't remember significant flooding in The Dalles.”
Stories this photo appears in:
From the archives of The Dalles Chronicle