Around Klamath Falls, Oregon Jan 6, 2015 10:28:03 GMT
Post by DianeMP on Jan 6, 2015 10:28:03 GMT
I happen to live in Klamath Falls, Oregon, so I also happen to take quite a few pictures in the vicinity. First, a tiny historical summary off the top of my head:
There are no "falls" here, only a set of shallow rapids in the Link River. This widens and becomes the Klamath River, which continues on south into California to the Pacific Ocean. It passes through national forests, ranches, small towns and wilderness. The name Klamath is from the Chinook* language for "people of the river," as they referred to one of their neighboring tribes to the south in Oregon. Besides the Klamath people, other local tribes are the Modoc and Yahooskin. Together they are known, for administrative purposes, as the Klamath Tribes. They had their own reservation covering a section of southern Oregon, but the US Government disbanded the reservation in the early 1960s, paying members about $70,000 each. This carried on the tradition of robbing Native Americans of their property, but this time with a token monetary compensation. They still struggle to find their place in American society while preserving their cultural traditions, as do most tribes in the USA.
Klamath Falls was settled in the mid-1800s by lumbermen and soon became a boom town. There were myriad lumber mills fed by independent loggers and small logging companies who flocked to what was then known as Linkville to make their fortune. Logging, milling and wood-products manufacturers (boxes, molding and so on) lined the waterways, convenient "highways" for floating logs from their dumping point, downstream to the mills. My own family was heavily involved in southern Oregon logging beginning in the late 1940s, eventually living in Klamath Falls. It was a very bustling town through the 1950s. In the 1960s, logging began to move further afield, gradually followed by mills and related industry. Klamath Falls has had a depressed economy since the closure of the enormous Weyerhaeuser Mill in about 1990. It's a geographically isolated, small city of about 40,000, with little opportunity for economic growth. It's also somewhat culturally isolated. The town looks run down and there are many abandoned homes and industrial buildings, Main Street is largely vacant and the main place to shop for anything is Walmart.
Well, it sounds grim, but I admit to enjoying the photographic opportunities - I love old, falling-down, rusty and just plain odd subjects. Many people are a bit paranoid, so I am frequently questioned and have even been yelled at when taking pictures in broad daylight, from public roads or walking around public property. There are few tourists, except those who are passing through to see the magnificent Crater Lake about 43 miles north of town, so I think that anyone with a camera is considered odd or suspicious. Of course, there are some lovely "wild west" vistas, some of which I'll also upload. I will divide this into two or three posts so you don't have to scroll forever.
Abandoned truck stop and environs...
*The Chinook are in far northern Oregon and Washington state.