Grangeville; An Aspiring Burg; A moral Community; Its Industries, etc.

Grangeville, located on Three-mile creek, has a population of, including babies, about 200 souls and is a good natured competitor for the proud title of the metropolis of Camas prairie.  The town was laid out three years ago, but was only surveyed the week before last by J.M. Crooks, Esq., the cattle king of the prairie who owns the town site and the North Idaho Grange Mills located thereon.  These mills were erected six years ago – prior to the location of the town; it possesses one run of barrels driven by water power from Three-mile creek for nine months in the year and is fitted with a 25 horse power steam engine to run the mill when the creek weakens.  The mills have a capacity of turning out 25 barrels of  flour per day of 12 hours and with the latest improved wheat cleaning machinery in operation and under the able supervision of Mr. J.W. Crea, the miller, has the reputation of turning out as fine a grade of flour as any manufactured on the Pacific coast.  Wheat commands 50 cents per bushel at the mills on Camas prairie, and by the time it has passed through the cleansing process it reaches the hopper in shape that would make a Minnesota miller turn up his eyes in wonder at the excellence of the wheat produced on Camas prairie.  The mercantile interests of Grangeville are represented by J. Alexander & Co., of this city, who are temporarily occupying the basement of the Grange Hall preparatory to erecting a new store of their own this summer.  Their present quarters are very commodious, and have the merit of being the most tastefully arranged store in the upper country.  The new store and warehouse will cover an area of 75 x 104 feet over all, with a solid glass front and with the good taste of Mr. A. Friedenrich, the resident partner, who manages the business in displaying goods, assisted by the gentle manly clerk, Mr. Gafferney.  The new store will be rendered the most attractive in this country.  The business was only opened July 1st, of last year and the extent of trading done here shows the value of the good will which Alexander & Friedenrich have obtained and speaks volumes for the development of Camas prairie.  The upper story of the Grange building a veritable “ominous” half, being utilized as the rendezvous for the Grangers and Red Cross, of this city, and is also used as a Sunday school and church by the different religious denominations.  There is a ? amount of activity displayed in Grangeville in religious matters, the Sunday school, under the leadership of Messrs. J.H. Robinson and Hall, is a powerful factor for good in developing the spiritual instincts of the large classes of children who attend and the far reaching followers of there agents of public morality are nowhere better illustrated them on Camas prairie, where the people are far more orderly, law abiding, and more free from neighborhood quarrels or individual bickering than many other more civilized communities.


The Jersey House, a fine, two story hard finished building, is the only hotel in Grangeville.  It is owned and run in first class state for the accommodation of its patrons by Mr. H. Titman, who knows how to get a good table.  Mr. Titman also owns the livery stable of the town where travelers stock are carefully housed and tended as per his advertisement to this paper, and the boys say that the liquid refreshments served over the bar are of the choicest brands.  There is a blacksmith shop, a tinsmith and other business interests located here, but owing to our note book having got wet and obliterated our notes, we are unable to give particulars at present.  It is very clear to our ? that Grangeville is desired to absorb no inconsiderable portion of the trade of Camas prairie when the resources of the prairie shall be more fully developed.  The prairie has at present only attained the teething stage of its development and even in the richest, best and most thickly settled portion, thereof  known as the Lake district, we traversed thousands and thousands of the choicest agricultural lands in the world with not a cent’s worth of improvements thereon, and given over wholly as a range for hogs and stock, when by every law of nature it ought to be producing local ?.  It makes us mad to think that American capitalists have not the shrewdness to come into North Idaho and avail themselves of the golden opportunities for investment in railroad enterprises here that will return bigger dividends in ten years than Mexican railroads will pay in a century.  Here on Camas prairie, is the largest tract of agricultural land in one body in the Northwest, unfortunately idle and unproductive for want of 65 or 70 miles of railroad to provide transportation for its product.  The prairie is so extensive that ? though we daily made hard rides in every direction from Grangeville and Mt. Idaho, we did not see one-third of the extent and only the mere fraction are under cultivation.


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