Before 1900

The homes of the valley were either log or slab built with square nails or wooden pegs. The barns or outbuildings were constructed mostly of cedar. The barns were for oxen or cows.

The first barns were usually built on the river bank on the highest point of land. The barns were built close to the river because the farmers shipped their milk by boat.

The farms, large and small, were limited in tillable ground as the valley had a very dense undergrowth of vine maple, alder, wild cherry, dogwood, and cottonwood.

There were water problems in the early days as the high waters would last two weeks at a time. Because of the dense undergrowth in the valley it would take the water longer to flow out.

The undergrowth had to be slashed and burned in August to get a clean burn. After a couple of years, the roots of the stumps would decay enough to be removed with a homemade stump puller, grub hoe, or shovel and ax, unless the farmer was lucky enough to have access to dynamite.

As lowland timber was removed the cleared land was used for farming; logging moved further into the foothills in the 1880s.

When oxen and horses were gradually eliminated machines helped grow these patches into acreage.

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