COUNTY FREE PRESS
JANUARY 20, 1888
RIVER WAGON ROAD - Idaho
County Takes the First Step Towards Opening the Salmon River Wagon Road
by Bridging White Bird Creek.
As will be seen by the report of the
proceedings published elsewhere the board of county commissioners have
contracted for the construction of a bridge across White Bird creek, at
a cost to the county of $750. The
grading and approaches will probably cost $250 in addition, which will
bring the cost up to about $1000. The
building of this bridge is the first step towards the opening of the
long talked of wagon road to southern Idaho, a bill for which is now
pending in congress. Mr. Larimor received a letter from Delegate Dubois recently,
stating that the outlook for the passage of the bill was most favorable.
In this event, the road is as good as built, and the fact that
this county has incurred the expense of the White Bird bridge will have
weight in congress in facilitating the passage of the bill by showing
the earnestness of our intentions in the matter of the proposed road.
The press of southern Idaho are also
awaking to the urgency of the proposed wagon road, and every support is
being given to the measure. It
is indeed matter for surprise that the subject was not long since
agitated and pushed to a successful consummation, and but for the
opposition in Lewiston to the measure, the road would have been built by
the government ten years ago. It
is bad policy to count chickens before they are hatched, but the
indications now are that the wagon road bill will be endorsed by
congress, to which event the money for its construction will be promptly
forthcoming and Idaho county as well as her sisters through which the
road will run, will receive immense accessions of revenue and population
from the new territory which the road will open up and develop.
It is impossible for those not
acquainted with the region through which the road will run to realize
its extent, the resources it contains and the great possibilities for
the production of mineral wealth which has already been exposed.
In Warrens alone there is quartz enough in sight to afford
employment to 500 men, which is now worthless and idle for lack of easy
access to the camp. With
the completion of the proposed wagon road, every quartz ledge in Warrens
camp will possess an actual money value which today could scarcely be
given away. The country
beyond is greater and richer than anything yet discovered in Idaho
Territory, and the interests already existing there are seriously
retarded by reason of lack of proper road facilities. In fact, the proposed road will develop all the unexplored
country that is left on the south side of Salmon river, and when that is
opened up there will be nothing left for us to accomplish, except the
development of the Elk City country, where roads have yet to be built
which will speedily demand attention.
Meanwhile the Salmon River project is in a fair way to become an
accomplished fact, which is glory enough for one day.
The Lewiston clique and their
henchmen hereabouts claim that the portion of Idaho County which will be
cut off in the event of our annexation to Washington territory is
worthless, and for that reason they propose to give it away.
We were told the same story last year when they proposed to
divide Idaho County in half; that Warrens and the county south of Salmon
river was worthless and not worth keeping.
This is the reason of Lelandís opposition to the Salmon River
wagon road project. He does not want to see the road built because it will
develop the country so fast, and make Idaho County so rich and great
that the existing order of things will be disturbed.
Camas prairie is now bottled up and Lewiston is the cork and here
lies the efforts on the part of the old moss backs there to retard our
development by depreciating the value of the country inside. It is the same with the reservation and all the practical
schemes which long headed men are trying to accomplish to develop the
resources of Idaho County. Such opposition is only another obstacle to
over come and as Lelandís name is a synonym for bad luck, we are
rather glad that he is on the other side.
remonstrance against the segregation of Idaho territory passed by the
board of commissioners of this county will meet the approval of
seventy-five per cent of the bona fide tax-paying and voting population
of Idaho county. The
Lewiston humbugs will get a black eye every time they meddle with the
affairs of Idaho County.