Siskiyou National Forest - 36S-10W-18
May 1, 1914: "Opening the trail to Bald Mtn., and locating a suitable lookout station as terminus for telephone line." (The Siskiyou Bulletin)
June 1, 1914: "Guard Dell Churchill will assist on bridge and trail June 1 to 4 or later, and will then go to Wild Horse Prairie and construct a tool box and equip it with tools. (Then spend a number of days on various trail work). Guard Churchill will then go to Bald Mtn on patrol work." (The Siskiyou Bulletin)
June 1916: "The probationary appointment of Mr. Allen as Assistant ranger terminated on June 30, but he will be retained as patrolman on Bald Mt. during the fire season." (The Siskiyou Bulletin)
March 24, 1929: "Another item included in the allotment for the forest is the construction of fire chasers' lookout house on the summit of Bald mountain. This will be 12 feet square and will have a tower for observation purposes. At present there is no shelter of any kind on this peak, which is in the lower Illinois river district." (The Sunday Oregonian - see footnote 1)
August 10, 1929: "The last load of lumber for construction of a lookout on top of Bald Mountain, on the lower Illinois River, left the city Friday. The lumber will go by truck to the end of the Illinois River road, where pack mules will take it 15 miles to the top of the mountain.
Trail crews working in that vicinity have henceforth held a lookout there unnecessary, but with their removal this year to other parts of the forest, officials decided to erect a building." (Grants Pass Daily Courier)
August 1929: "The material for the Bald Mountain lookout-fireman house is all on the ground except the lightning protection and prairie chimney and Henry expects to complete the house by September 15th." (The Siskiyou Bulletin)
September 4, 1929: "With all material for construction of the lookout station on the top of Bald Mountain, on the ground, the building is now being erected by Henry Harrison of the forest service. Mr. Harrison built the lookout on Mt. Bolivar last year and also assisted with construction of the Ranger Station at Powers. Lumber for the Bald Mountain station was packed from Selma by horses. The lookout is 58 miles from the city, on the south side of the Illinois River trail between Selma and Agness." (Grants Pass Daily Courier)
October 1930: "Trip was made to Bald Mountain to cut several trees from around lookout house, making vision much better north and west, also giving vision on the Silver Creek section which was not visible before." (The Siskiyou Bulletin)
August 1931: "On the afternoon of July 9 the Chevrolet truck left Kerby loaded with supplies for Bald Mountain Lookout. Oak Flat was the destination of the truck. There it was met by a pack train, and the process of loading horses took place. The trip over 19 miles of trail started; how the stock groaned under the loads! 'Hot Dog!' said George, 'Enough grub for all summer, nothing forgotten.' On arrival poor George's feather fell; not a match in the outfit; so an everlasting fire is kept on Bald Mountain." (The Siskiyou Bulletin)
August 1932: "Mr. Gallaher, who has prospected on the Bald Mountain country for a number of years, came to the station on June 14, not feeling well. George Wadsworth, the lookout, took him in, taking the best possible care of him under the circumstances. On June 15, Mr. Gallaher got somewhat worse and at 3:55 a.m. died. Ed Cox of Oak Flat packed the corpse out to Oak Flat where the coroner met them with a car. Vondis Miller" (Six Twenty-Six)
May 1940: "Lightning is sole risk, and in past ten years there have been no such fires within its seen area. Suggested dates are set up under this premise. Provides coverage of high hazard areas, and should experience fairly low fuel moistures." (Plans, Guard Placement, Siskiyou National Forest)
1941: The lookout was staffed 84 days. The lookout reported to the Redwood Ranger Station by way of forest line to Pacific Telephone and Telegraph.
February 1914: "Herman Luethye, lookoutman on Bolan Peak last summer has made a working model of a brush hook." (The Siskiyou Bulletin)
August 1915: "A cabin will be constructed at the Bolen Peak Lookout Station." (The Siskiyou Bulletin)
September 1915: "During the coming month I expect to construct the Bolen Lookout cabin, that is, providing the weather will permit. Ranger Lewis" (The Siskiyou Bulletin)
June 1916: "On the 15th, we went to the Bolen Lookout expecting to complete our cabin, we supposed that our lumber would be dry and in shape to work but, instead we dug down into the snow bank six feet before coming to the top of the pile of lumber and as the the pile was about seven feet high at this point, the snow would have been about 13 feet deep where last year at the same date the snow was only about 2 feet deep at the same point. Ranger Lewis, Page District" (The Siskiyou Bulletin)
August 28, 1916: "D.B. Reynolds, of the local forestry office, left this morning for a two weeks' trip inspecting the different lookout stations in this district. The first camps visited will be Bolan and Sanger mountains. Mr. Reynolds will then go to High Dome and Red Mountain and other stations in that vicinity." (Rogue River Courier - LoC)
October 1916: "After a seasons use of the only lookout building that we have on the district which is built after the plan of lookout houses on the California Forests, we find that at times the reflection or mirage is so great that it is impossible to accurately judge distances in locating a fire from the interior of the cabin. I would like to ask if any of you have had similar trouble and if so, how did you remedy the defect." (The Siskiyou Bulletin)
1917: A 12x12 lookout house built on a six foot high log cribbing was completed.
June 1919: "Material was packed into Bolen Mountain Lookout Station for the purpose of building a tower on the roof of the present lookout house." (The Siskiyou Bulletin)
August 1919: "September 3, 6:30 a.m. a real old fashioned rain began at the Page Creek Ranger Station, and wet things down in good shape, at Bolen Peak Lookout Station enough snow fell to slide off the lookout house and nearly frightened Mr. Luethye to death, as he was sure that the tower that had recently been built on the house was being carried away by the wind which blew a 70 mile gale." (The Siskiyou Bulletin)
June 1920: "On Mr. Luethye's arrival at the Bolan Mountain Lookout Station this spring he found that a heavy storm which occurred sometime during the winter has made a good start at tearing the lookout house from its foundation one of the anchors had gave way and nearly everything that was loose on the peak had blown away." (The Siskiyou Bulletin)
July 1921: "Charles C. Hogue, lookout on Bolan Mountain, became very ill the latter part of the month with acute stomach disorder and necessarily had to come out for medical attention. But fortunately Herman Luethye, veteran of many seasons at that station, is back at his old post acting as relief man during Hogues absence." (The Siskiyou Bulletin)
September 1923: "August has passed with a record of no man-caused fires to date this season. We had a small one at Bolan Lookout caused by lightning but it did not take Fred Seyferth the lookout long to put it on the list of subdued fires." (Six Twenty-Six)
October 1925: "The lookout house on Bolan Mountain is now equipped with lightning protection and is resplendent with a new coat of paint." (Six Twenty-Six)
October 1925: "There is about three inches of snow on Bolan Peak, and we are wondering if we haven't delayed moving the lookout's equipment out just a few days too long." (The Siskiyou Bulletin)
1927: Bolan Peak Lookout reported four fire discoveries on the forest in 1927, leading all other Siskiyou lookouts.
September 1928: "Herman Luethye, lookout on Bolan Peak reported humidity of 13% at seven a.m. on September 20." (The Siskiyou Bulletin)
October 1928: "During the past fire season Bolan Peak reported 21 smokes." (The Siskiyou Bulletin)
February 1929: "In lining up our summer protective force we find that Herman Luethye, who has been lookout on Bolan Peak for the past 13 or 14 years, is unable to take the job this year on account of defective eyesight. An Oculist has advised him that a cataract is forming on each eye which will eventually result in total blindness. Herman has been with us so long and has done such good work that it is going to be hard to get along without him." (The Siskiyou Bulletin)
July 10, 1929: "James Kellogg left Friday morning for Bolan Peak Lookout where he will be stationed for the summer." (Grants Pass Daily Courier)
October 2, 1930: "Herman Luethye will be down from Bolan Peak Lookout the first of October." (Grants Pass Daily Courier)
October 21, 1930: "Supervisor Billingslea announced that Herman Luethye, veteran lookout, went back Tuesday to his farseeing perch on Bolan Peak. This year is his fifteenth season looking out for forest fires." (Grants Pass Daily Courier)
September 1932: "Herman Luethye, Bolan Pk. Look-out for 18 years. 'I have in a few words given my opinion and some of my experience, during my years of service as Lookout at Bolan Peak.
Now that all old men have to retire, I would like to make a few suggestions that may help the man to follow to report fires more accurate, with very little more work for the P.A.
First, when a fire is reported, and correct location platted, let the P.A. call his lookouts and give the platted location of the fire, this gives the lookout a mark to go by to locate the next fire.
Second, when the men are ready to go to the fire, call the lookout nearest to it, to make sure it is a fire. I know of more than one instant where the men were sent out and no fire found especially after a thunder storm.
Third, when fire is entirely out, the P.A. is the only one in the office that knows, therefore inform the lookout, so he can mark the fire out in his report. There are only rare instances that the lookout is able to determine this from his station, especially if base of fire was not sighted.
I have probable located and reported about 700 fires during my time of service, some of them pretty accurate, some of them I missed quite a bit. I also have made mistakes, but only twice to my knowledge have I reported a fire, after a thunderstorm that was either a bunch of fog or it rained out, during the storm, for it's location was never found.
I started as lookout in July 1913 served only part time in 1921, not at all in 1923 and part time in 1929. Served under five different Supervisors, and five different Rangers, found them all splendid men doing the best they could and well liked by the men working under them.
I have liked the work well, otherwise I would not have stayed as long as I did. The man that is not a lover of nature, has not learned to stay alone in hills, can not accustom himself to the various moods of nature, but expects all sunshine and pleasure, will never make a good lookout man, but will be sorely disappointed, and had better stay at home with Mama.
In this my Farewell Letter, I extend to all Officers and men of the Siskiyou National Forest my heart felt thanks for all courtesies shown me, and wishing them success in their work in the future.
I am with kind regards. Herman Luethyte" (The Siskiyou Bulletin)
May 1940: "Position is in center of a very heavy concentration of past lightning fires, and suggested season is based on the possible lightning season, plus a somewhat later date because its seen area over 8 miles includes area in which man-caused fires appear." (Plans, Guard Placement, Siskiyou National Forest)
1942: An Aircraft Warning Service cabin was constructed.
1951: One and one third miles of road were constructed to the lookout.
1953: A new 14x14 L-4 lookout house was constructed on a 15-foot tower.
Siskiyou National Forest - 39S-10W-12
May 1940: "Position is in inaccessible country. Lightning is principal risk." (Plans, Guard Placement, Siskiyou National Forest)
1941: A trail was constructed to the peak where a 14x14 L-4 lookout house was erected.
CHROME RIDGE (FREELAND MOUNTAIN)
Siskiyou National Forest - 36S-9W-2
1936: Panorama photos taken.
May 1940: "Several fires -- man and lightning -- have occurred within the seen area from this point. Burns in prolific numbers are in all directions. Fire danger at Ferren indicates that the dates suggested are very reasonable and not a bit too long." (Plans, Guard Placement, Siskiyou National Forest)
1941: The lookout was manned for 105 days and reported to the Rand Ranger Station.
Siskiyou National Forest - 37S-10W-18
1941: The lookout was staffed 64 days. Reported to the Redwood Ranger Station.
Siskiyou National Forest - 35S-9W-5
1936: Panorama photos were taken.
1939: A 20-foot creosoted timber tower was packed in and erected by E.R.A. labor.
1940: "A cabin was built on the 20 ft. creosoted timber tower constructed on Hobson Horn in 1939. Visibility clearing was done." (A History of the Siskiyou National Forest)
May 1940: "Seen area takes in a wide expanse of country." (Plans, Guard Placement, Siskiyou National Forest)
1941: The lookout was staffed 100 days. The reporting station was Rand and communications were by forest line to Pacific Telephone and Telegraph.
State - 38S-6W-31
May 22, 1916: "Forest Supervisor Macduff and Chas. Hoxie, fire warden, have gone to Kerby to locate a fire lookout station on Kerby mountain. The station will be equipped with telephone and fire locating apparatus, and will be in charge of Mr. Hoxie during the summer." (Rogue River Courier - LoC)
June 1916: "During June a telephone line was built to the top of Kerby Peak. Although inside the National Forest the peak covers more outside lands than inside hence the State built the line, the Service furnishing the material. The State will furnish the lookout man." (The Siskiyou Bulletin)
July 27, 1921: "A small forest fire was discovered yesterday afternoon near Love Station and before night had developed into quite a blaze. The forestry office had a number of men on the job and had the fire out by 10:30 this morning. The Kerby Peak lookout discovered and reported the fire. The breezes and the dry condition of the forests at the present time make a fire exceedingly dangerous. Every caution is urged on the part of campers and tourists to see that no fires are left behind them." (Grants Pass Daily Courier)
August 5, 1922: "Mr. Hoxie took another plane trip over Josephine yesterday and located but one fire, a small blaze on Deer Creek, which was being put under control by one of the wardens. The flight was made with Sergeant Templeton, who did the 210 miles in an hour and three quarters.
When they flew over Kerby Peak they dropped down to about 20 feet above the lookout station and yelled their greetings to the lookout." (Grants Pass Daily Courier)
September 29, 1923: "William Barr, lookout at Kerby Peak, came home Wednesday, the fire season having closed. Mr. Barr reports snow in the nearby mountains." (Grants Pass Daily Courier)
May 1928: "The Kerby Peak Lookout house, which was constructed by the State, doesn't begin to compare with any of our lookout houses in appearance or efficiency." (The Siskiyou Bulletin)
May 25, 1928: "Cap Hinkle, Ben Carlyle and Clarence Schearer are putting the trail and telephone line in good shape up to Kerby Peak, as the lookout man, Ben Carlyle, will be at his station by June 1." (Grants Pass Daily Courier)
July 1928: "The Kerby Peak (State lookout station) is now connected with telephone direct with the Page Creek Headquarters station." (The Siskiyou Bulletin)
October 23, 1929: "W.J. Carlisle has returned home from Kerby Peak where he spent several months as 'fire look out.' There were no serious fires nearby this year. The lumbermen are now burning their logged off land." (Grants Pass Daily Courier)
July 15, 1938: "First casualty of the second series of fires was William Moore of Rogue River, a state fire warden who fell 14 feet from a cliff as he was supervising a fire-fighting crew yesterday in the Kerby region.
Moore was taken to the Kerby Peak Lookout station, where a first aid crew arrived with him at 10 last night. Faced with a pouring rain and a six mile hike over tortuous trails, his companions made him as comfortable as possible for the night at the lookout station. Early this morning a patrol of 12 men reached the station to take Mr. Moore out of the forest on a stretcher. He was brought to Sacred Heart hospital here." (Medford Mail Tribune)
Umpqua National Forest >State - 33S-5W-24
April 11, 1930: "Two new lookout houses are to be constructed. One on Onion Springs Mountain, east of Glendale, between Cow Creek and Grave Creek. Twelve miles of new telephone line has just been completed to connect this new lookout with the district warden's office." (Roseburg News Review)
May 27, 1930: " 'One of the major improvements that will greatly assist in forest protection work, is the construction of a 40-foot lookout tower and cabin at Onion Springs Mountain,' declared state forester F.A. Elliott. 'This tower will enable scouts to survey practically the entire area of Josephine and Jackson counties and part of Douglas.' " (Ashland Daily Tidings)
August 15, 1930: "Lightning shook hands too promiscuously around the top of a mountain Thursday evening, so the lookout went down the mountain and helped fight fires for awhile, preferring actualities to possibilities, according to a report made by a state forest official Friday.
Three more fires, added to four earlier ones, were started Thursday on King Mountain by the lightning storm in the evening, Fire Warden A.L. McCarty stated Friday. Four men left early Friday to stamp out the last traces of the fires there. A light shower at 6 p.m. Thursday is believed to have smothered out some of the flames." (Grants Pass Daily Courier)
June 15, 1931: "Onion Springs mountain is no more, that is, officially speaking. King mountain will replace it on the maps hereafter. The change in name was made recently by forestry officials primarily to avoid confusion, as there are other mountains and peaks that are also designated by the name of the plebian vegetable.
With the location of a new fire patrol lookout station atop this mountain it was decided by Fred Southwick, Roseburg; L. McCarthy, Grants Pass, and Dwight Phipps, Medford, rangers and chiefs of the three districts directly served by the station to rename the peak King mountain in honor of Porter S. King, of Salem, now assistant state forester in charge of protection, who has been actively associated with forestry work and fire prevention for more than 20 years.
King mountain is 10 miles in a southeasterly direction from Glendale and near the convergence of Douglas, Jackson and Josephine counties. The headwaters of Quines creek, tributary of Cow creek, drains the north slope. Graves creek, drain the south slopes. The mountain is 5242 feet high and the lookout tower is 40 feet high making the lookout station a mile high.
Roy Edwards of Rogue River for several years past lookout at Battle mountain is now acting in like capacity at the new King mountain station. He and Mrs. Edwards live in a small cabin built at the base of the lookout tower. Water is available from a spring about a quarter mile from the top of the mountain. Provisions and supplies are packed up a three mile trail from the end of a road on Coyote creek.
A telephone line to Glendale and two other lines serving this station are used by Edwards to report his observations." (Roseburg News Review)
July 1, 1932: "The mile high lookout station on King mountain was placed in service June 15th with Roy Edwards in charge. This will be the second season Mr. and Mrs. Edwards are spending atop one of the highest peaks in this district. King mountain was formerly known as Onion Springs and is located about 10 miles southeast of Glendale." (Roseburg News-Review)
August 15, 1933: Panorama photos were taken by Arnst and Birchall.
August 8, 1942: "The improvements which we have listed for King Mountain observation post are as follows: 12x12 ground house and an 8x8 cabin on a 72 foot tower. The cabin is reported to be in poor shape. The post is accessible by road. This station needs suitable sleeping and storage facilities, it is recommended by the office to build a 16x18 garage-sized building, completely sealed and floored for sleeping and storage accommodations. Shake and pole woodshed will also be needed." (Memorandum to the State Forester from James Frankland, USFS Engineering)
October 16, 1943: The Army de-activated this AWS post effective 1800 hours.
January 23, 1953: "The state forestry department Thursday was completing appraisal of its loss resulting from high winds and heavy rains earlier in the week.
A 52-foot lookout tower on King mountain, 15 miles east of Glendale, was blown down and demolished. Officials said it would cost $4000 to replace the tower." (The Oregonian - footnote 1)
Siskiyou National Forest - 40S-6W-13
1938: A 10x10 L-5 lookout cabin was constructed.
1941: The lookout was staffed 89 days and reported to the Redwood Ranger Station.
In the early 1950's the lookout was destroyed during a wind storm. Fifty years later much of the debris still clutters the hill side.
LITTLE GRAYBACK MOUNTAIN
1980: "Construction began on Little Grayback Lookout on July 1. Total completion is expected by the beginning of the 1981 fire season. It is located on Little Grayback Ridge which is about 8 miles east of Cave Junction. Approximately 900 man hours were put into its construction thus far. Materials for the lookout were flown in by Forest Service helicopter. A lot of the materials were acquired from the old Waldo Mountain lookout. The new lookout provides better detection coverage than Waldo." (Southwest Oregon District Annual Report, 1980)
May 22, 1931: "In an effort to combat fire hazards more successfully, authorization has been given to build a lookout post at this location." (Medford Mail Tribune)
June 1931: "Ranger Cooper and I were out on Mt. Reuben a few days ago and selected a site for the Mt. Reuben lookout-fireman cabin. The site is within a quarter of a mile of the Mt. Reuben road and commands an excellent view of the country on the south side of Rogue River to the summit of the Illinois-Rogue River Divide." (The Siskiyou Bulletin)
June 28, 1931: "A fire patrol lookout station is being established on Mount Reuben, eight miles due west of Glendale, located within the Siskiyou national forest reserve. A seven-mile telephone line connecting the new lookout station with the lines extending down the Rogue river from Galice to Agness is now under construction by the forestry service. The new line is being built down Whiskey creek and will connect with the present line at White Neck." (The Sunday Oregonian - footnote 1)
1931: A 30-foot tower with an R-1 style cab was constructed.
May 1940: "Past fire danger records show that this point has been manned very early in June for two out of three years, and has not been taken off until the last of September in all three years. Very dry section -- 61% of all readings in July and August for past three years lie between 5% and 8%." (Plans, Guard Placement, Siskiyou National Forest)
1951: A new lookout was constructed.
State - 37S-6W-31
1961: A 30-foot timber tower with an Amort style lookout house constructed.
1989: The lookout received a new metal roof.
2007: The lookout was declared unsafe and staffing was terminated.
2010: In the spring, the lookout was burned. This tower had been declared unsafe in 2007.
A tree lookout
January 1915: "I am very desirous of trying out the new method of constructing telephone lines and hope I may be able to do so this spring on the proposed line to Onion Mountain Lookout point. J.P. DeWitt, District 3 Ranger" (The Siskiyou Bulletin)
August 1915: "Guards Raybell, Stiewig and Campbell constructed about 3 1/2 miles of telephone line from F.R.S. to Onion Mt. About $25.00 was expended for temporary labor in pulling out wire and clearing right of way." (The Siskiyou Bulletin)
1915: A telephone line from Ferrin Guard Station was constructed to Onion Mountain.
June 5, 1916: "Walter Sackman will leave the middle of the week for Bald Mountain, to clear trail. When this is done he will act as lookout on Onion Mountain." (Rogue River Courier - LoC)
September 27, 1916: "Word was received here this morning that Mrs. Walter Sackman, wife of the lookout at Onion mountain, had become violently ill. Mr. Sackman and J.A. Gaslin are bringing her to the wagon road, where she is to be met by a doctor." (Rogue River Courier - LoC)
September 28, 1916: "Mrs. Walter Sackman, who was taken violently ill yesterday at the ranger camp at Onion mountain, was brought in last night and at last reports is improving. She was carried by Mr. Sackman and J.A. Gaslin from the lookout station to the wagon road." (Rogue River Courier - LoC)
October 3, 1916: "Walter Sackman returned last night from his lookout station on Onion mountain, where he has spent all summer." (Rogue River Courier - LoC)
1921: Mrs. Hamblin was one of three women on the Siskiyou forest to hold the position of lookout.
August 1923: "In the very near future we hope to have a standard lookout house on Onion Mountain, the material and other equipment has been ordered, and construction will start as soon as we can pack the material in." (The Siskiyou Bulletin)
September 27, 1923: "A lookout house on Onion Mountain is being erected by the forest service. The lumber is being taken up the mountain today and the building will be erected as soon as possible. Although fire danger is practically over for the season, the office is not taking any chances on a recurrence of the fires should the weather again become dry suddenly and will not call the men in from their posts until after the first of the month." (Grants Pass Daily Courier)
September 1923: "We are getting construction work started on a standard lookout house on Onion Mountain. The work is proceeding slowly on account of the unusual adverse conditions but if we have any luck will finish it before the snow comes. We also expect to get some work done on the construction of the Onion Mountain-Slate Creek telephone line this month." (The Siskiyou Bulletin)
May 1926: "An SOS from Onion Mountain Lookout on June 2 roused us about 6:00 a.m. Frank Scritchfield was in great distress and calling for a doctor. I picked up Dr. Ogle at Grants Pass, and going by way of Limpy Creek arrived at the lookout 11:30 a.m. After receiving some stimulants Frank was able, with the doctor's assistance, to stagger the 8 miles to the doctor's car. They arrived in town that night at 7 p.m. Doctor's diagnosis was acute appendicitis, but upon operating next day constricted hernia was found. Frank had both feet over the Divide but changed his mind and turned back. He has a fair show now, and we hope to have him on the lookout soon. Ranger Boriga, Galice District" (The Siskiyou Bulletin)
December 1927: "Onion Mountain Lookout reported three first discoveries on the Siskiyou National Forest in 1927." (The Siskiyou Bulletin)
1929: About four and a half miles of number 12 wire was replaced with number 9 wire on the Onion Mountain telephone line.
July 30, 1929: "Sunday a grass fire on the Hair property across Rogue River from Riverside park attracted the attention of many local people, but Siskiyou Forest Office has just received word that it was viewed from a distance of 16 miles.
J.H. Billingslea, superintendent of the forest, is making an inspection trip of the forests, and he reported that at the same time he was making a report of the fire from the top of Onion Mountain, he saw the fire engine rushing to the blaze." (Grants Pass Daily Courier)
August 1929: "Onion Mountain lookout will now stand a rigid inspection by standard methods. Orval Jess, the lookout, has repainted the station both inside and out and a good job of it he has done too." (The Siskiyou Bulletin)
October 23, 1930: "Supervisor J.H. Billingslea of the Siskiyou national forest reported that Ray Sloan mounted Onion Mountain Thursday to take up his duties as lookout. A repetition of the prolonged fire season of last year, which was not ended until December 8." (Grants Pass Daily Courier)
Fall 1932: "The Onion Mountain lookout turned in 142 fire reports during the past season, most of them for fires on state land. During the latter part of the season the P.A. wondered why the lookout was not turning the usual number of fires and upon checking up was informed by him that he had only two forms 1-R6 left and he was saving them for a fire on the forest. The lookout was immediately instructed to make out his reports on a diary sheet and turn them in anyway." (The Siskiyou Bulletin)
May 1940: "Good seen area in a locality where man-caused fires were located. 1939 point was not manned until 1 and came off October 1. Prior information not available. Suggested dates are believed to be much closer to probable need than the present allotted dates." (Plans, Guard Placement, Siskiyou National Forset)
1943: An automatic radio relay station was installed at the Onion Mountain observation post to relay messages from coastal points to Grants Pass.
1952: An L-4 lookout house was constructed on a 10-foot treated timber tower.
Siskiyou National Forest > State - 34S-8W-21
February 13, 1914: "Peavine. Area 42.90 acres.
This station was selected October 22, 1909.
The entire area is fenced which cost $130.14 to construct. A small store house has also been constructed by the Forest Service.
Some grass has been sown and there is a sufficient amount available for limited pasturage.
The station is now being used as a lookout station being connected by telephone. It is planned to use the area as an intermediate or temporary headquarters.
No water has been appropriated.
The area has not been applied for under the Act of June 11, 1906." (L Siskiyou Stations, Peavine)
August 1914: "C.F. Allen at Peavine has erected a sort of tower at his lookout, this affords a much better view." (The Siskiyou Bulletin)
June 1923: "Mr. Haefner (Forest Examiner) went on up to Peavine Mountain in the evening to straighten out our lookout location there." (The Siskiyou Bulletin)
1934: A 40-foot round timber tower with an R-1 style lookout cab was constructed.
May 1940: "According to the records this point registers the driest fuel moistires of all points sampled on the district -- 90% of all July and August days in past three years have had fuel moistures between 3% and8%. This position in the past years has been one of the earliest used. The suggested opening date might well be set back 10 to 15 days, since in 1939 this point was in use on April 26. It has excellent seen area and covers considerable amounts of high hazard fuels." (Plans, Guard Placement, Siskiyou National Forest)
1941: The lookout was staffed 120 days and reported to the Rand Ranger Station.
1961: A new laminated timber tower with a 14x14 flat roof cab was constructed at a new location on the ridge by the State Department of Forestry.
2005: The lookout was deemed unsafe and therefor not staffed.
November 20, 2006: The Department of Forestry fell the tower and burned it on site.
SERPENTINE MOUNTAIN - 1
Siskiyou National Forest - 37S-8W-9
1934: A 40-foot round timber tower with an L-4 cab was constructed.
1962: The lookout was discontinued and duties transfer to a new tower construct on a point about one mile to the south.
SERPENTINE MOUNTAIN - 2
Siskiyou National Forest
1962: A 41-foot treated timber tower with an R-6 flat-roof cab was constructed. This tower was to replaced an older tower that was located approximately one mile north.
State - 34S-6W-24
October 17, 1929: "Wednesday Fred Smith moved Mr. Briggs down from Sexton Mountain. Mr. Briggs has been acting as lookout this summer for the state fire department." (Grants Pass Daily Courier)
April 5, 1930: "A new lookout station is in course of construction on Bald Mountain." (Grants Pass Daily Courier) (Grave Creek gossip column)
June 19, 1930: "Fred Smith is once more on duty as fire warden for this district. Mr. and Mrs. Smith visited the Look Out station on Sexton Mountain Saturday, where Mr. and Mrs. Nealy are in charge for the season." (Grants Pass Daily Courier)
1931: The materials for the new lookout were packed to the summit by Larry 'Red' McLane by mule train.
December 1931: "A new cabin is being constructed on the spot where the state has maintained a lookout for the past 20 years. The new cabin designed with observation tower on top. The old cabin will be moved a short distance and be used as living quarters." (Forest Log)
March 1932: "Sexton Mountain lookout completed, also a government airways station for recording weather.
On the roof, a cupola was built, but errors in construction makes it almost impossible to mount a fire finder." (Forest Log)
August 16, 1933: Panorama photos were taken by Arnst and Birchall.
June 11, 1940: "With high temperatures increasing fire hazards sharply, the state forest patrol here posted two more lookouts today, one at Crony Peak on the Sexton Mountain summit." (Medford Mail Tribune)
1940: The lookout reported to Grants Pass by Forest telephone line and by early radio. The site was the location of an Airway beacon light.
1962: A 30-foot tower with an Amort style lookout cab was constructed.
April 4, 2006: "Vandals destroyed the historic Mount Sexton fire lookout and three Oregon Department of Forestry repeater antennas Saturday night. (April 1st)
The damage, which included three structures and other communications equipment, could total as much as $500,00, according to an Oregon State Police detective leading the investigation." (Medford Mail Tribune)
October 2007: A new steel tower was completed and was placed in service the 2008 fire season.
Siskiyou National Forest - 36S-11W-11
1940: A one mile spur trail was completed to the lookout.
May 1940: "Provides coverage of inaccessable areas. (Plans, Guard Placement, Siskiyou National Forest)
1941: An L-4 lookout house was constructed.
1941: The lookout was staffed 100 days and reported to the Agness Ranger Station.
Siskiyou National Forest - 39S-6W-19
1940: A fireman station with an Alidade.
May 1940: "Seen area covers principally lightning country. Position not on road, hence suppression coverage somewhat restricted." (Plans, Guard Placement, Siskiyou National Forest)
Rogue River National Forest -
1916: "On Steve Peak a call bell was established at the observer's camp. In case of emergency the observer could be called to the 'phone at any time when he was not on top. The Steve Peak observer was called to his phone and upon arrival was unable to learn who had called him. The cause of this false alarm was crossed wires and the ringing of a number on another line was mistaken by the observer for his ring.
It might be possible to require the observer to live on top and carry water from the spring for his needs; but to utilize all his time he should not be required to do this work, but be provided with a tank filled from the melting snow.
The lookout was furnished with a pocket box compass with a two inch needle. Far from being very accurate at any distance." (The Fire Lookout System on the Crater National Forest, Harold Foster, 1916)
August 31, 1918: "A fresh forest fire on Steve's Fork of Carberry Creek near Steamboat in the Applegate district, which has been burning for several days, and which now covers 1,000 acres, was fanned by a high wind which arose yesterday into a swift spreading and traveling conflagration. So fast did the fire travel that Dr. Barker, the retired physician of Jacksonville who is the lookout at the forest lookout station on Steve's Peak, had barely time to escape with his life. He saw flames coming up the mountain at some distance away and seizing a few personal effects ran with all his might for a mile or more to safety. The flames reached the lookout station a moment after his departure and destroyed it and all its contents. As yet this forest fire has not gotten into heavy timber." (Mail Tribune)
September 5, 1918: "The big forest fire that started in brush in the Carberry Creek-Stevens peak section several days ago, has spread into huge proportions and reached heavy timber. It has spread in length as far as Swan Valley which is 8 to 10 miles west from Stevens Peak. The lookout at the peak, who was forced to flee when the fire started and spread so fast, and who returned to the station later, telephoned today that the peak was surrounded on all sides by fire and that he could not get away if he wanted. He has supplies and of course is now in no danger because of the fire in its rush having burned over everything in the vicinity of the peak." (Mail Tribune)
July 12, 1933: Panorama photos were taken by Arnst and Sarlin.
September 12, 1933: "The Camp Applegate CCC's started work on the Steve's Peak lookout." (Medford Mail Tribune)
Siskiyou National Forest - 41S-6W-1
May 1940: "Provides seen area and, primarily, suppression coverage in the SE corner of the district. Lightning is the only risk. In general, Bolan Peak provides adequate detection but cannot see an area covered by this point. Should usually be needed only for a restricted period." (Plans, Guard Placement, Siskiyou National Forest)
Siskiyou National Forest - 39S-9W-1
November 1931: "After our heavy storm we are trying to catch up on our improvement work as we are getting a rest on fires. The Tennessee Mountain road and telephone line are now under construction, when road and line are completed we will have an Emergency Lookout that will be of great value during times of poor visibilty and in the spring before other lookouts are on." (The Siskiyou Bulletin)
June 1932: "On June 9 the Tennessee Lookout saw lightning strike in the vicinity of Merlin, some twenty-five miles away. Six minutes later smoke was picked up where the strike was seen. Guard detection, we claim, helps some on the hour control." (The Siskiyou Bulletin)
July 1932: "The new Tennessee Mountain Lookout station made an excellent place for training the sixteen lookouts who attended the guard school. The fire finder is mounted in the open and has a railed platform surrounding it. Several smokes in Illinois Valley gave the men opportunity to try out their ability at locating and reporting actual fires." (The Siskiyou Bulletin)
April 3, 1934: Panorama photos were taken by Rittenhouse and Arnst.
1937: The road to the lookout, started in 1936, was completed.
May 1940: "Excellent seen area over an area that has a very high expectency of man-caused fires in the settlements, particularly S and SE or Redwood R.S. Position should be manned very early in the fire season, and past records indicate that it has been so manned. Its suppression coverage is not a factor since this can be well taken care of out of Redwood R.S. Suggested dates are conservative and represent more of an average condition. Opening dates prior to May 15 should be handled by an emergency guard." (Plans, Guard Placement, Siskiyou National Forest)
1941: The lookout was staffed 135 days and reported to the Redwood Ranger Station.
Siskiyou National Forest > State - 40S-8W-33
1940: A 20-foot Port Orford cedar sawn timber tower with an L-4 post 1936 cab was constructed.
May 1940: "Excellent seen area that is complementary to that from Tennessee Mountain. There is some duplication between the two points but Waldo Hill fills a big hole in which numerous fires occur in a high value area. Position should be manned simultaneously with Tennessee Mountain." (Plans. Guard Placement, Siskiyou National Forest)
June 29, 1956: "Dear Martin, I want to thank you on behalf of the Forest Service for the courtesy you showed us recently during our annual guard training camp. The four days that were spent at Waldo in training our lookouts must have disrupted your routine considerably. Your patience under such conditions is very much appreciated.
As you know it is difficult for us to use one of our own lookout stations for this training due to the distance involved and for that reason with yours and John Moss' cooperation we have conducted the training at Waldo.
I hope your fire finder is finally leveled again and that you have a good season. Thanks again for your help. District Ranger" (Letter to the lookout, Waldo from District Ranger, USFS)
1980: The tower was dismantled and the timbers flown to Little Greyback to be used in the construction of a new lookout station at that point.
Rogue River National Forest
1923: A telephone line was constructed from the Oregon Caves to Whiskey Peak.
1924: Floyd Murray and others cut materials at the Medford warehouse for the lookout house that he constructed on Whiskey Peak.
October 11, 1929: "The lookout cabin at Whiskey Peak was destroyed by fire Sunday, caused by fire starting near the flue. Cal Winningham, lookout man, tried hard to put out the fire but wood which is stored inside caught on fire, making it impossible. The government loss was $1,000 and Mr. Winningham lost his clothing and bedding. Whiskey Peak is about eight miles from the Steamboat road." (Medford Mail Tribune)
June 20, 1930: "Cal Winningham was stationed at Whiskey Peak. Mr. Winningham is living in a tent as the lookout was burned down last fall. He is trimming the trail so lumber can be packed to the top od the peak. The Forest Service expects to start building the new house in July." (Medford Mail tribune)
June 27, 1930: "Forest Service will begin work next week on the new lookout that is being constructed on Whiskey Peak since the old one was destroyed last fall by fire. It is to have a concrete floor and Tom Bigsby from Eagle Point will pack the sand and gravel from Big Applegate to the top of the peak." (Medford Mail Tribune)
July 23, 1930: "New forest lookout stations are being erected on four peaks in the Crater national forest this month, forest officials announce. The buildings which arrive here ready made from service headquarters in Portland." One of these buildings is to be placed on Whiskey Peak. (Morning Oregonian - see footnote 1)
July 25, 1930: "Work was started by the national forest service on the new lookout station on top of Whiskey Peak to take the place of the one destroyed last year by fire. Garold Buck is running the caterpillar tractor and trailer hauling sand and gravel from the bed of Big Applegate up to the end of the road, where Tom Bigsby continues with pack horses to the top. The new house is to have a concrete floor. Cal Winningham, the new lookout for the forest service is living in a tent while the new house is being constructed." (Medford Mail tribune)
October 3, 1930: "The new Whiskey Peak lookout building has been completed, but was a little late for this season. Cal Winningham, the lookout man, was taken off duty this week. He remained on top of the mountain, however, to paint the new house." (Medford Mail Tribune)
August 7, 1936: "James McLean, 20, of Hillsboro, Ore., a forest service lookout, stationed at Whiskey Peak, in the upper reaches of the Applegate, yesterday afternoon was shot in the left leg by the accidental discharge of a .22 caliber rifle.
The weapon was behind the lookout station door. When McLean closed the door, the rifle fell to the floor and was discharged. The bullet struck McLean near the knee and coursed upwards.
McLean applied a tourniquet, and dressed his would, then telephoned for aid.
The attending physician said there was a possibility McLean had sustained a severed major nerve center, and a large artery." (News-Review)
August 14, 1936: "James MacLean, forestry student at Oregon state college who has been confined at Community hospital with a bullet wound in his left leg, showed a turn for the worse last night and his father, A. MacLean of Hillsboro, was again called to the city.
Because of lack of circulation, gangrene has shown evidence of developing and it might become necessary to amputate the leg midway between the knee and ankle, the attending physician said.
MacLean was shot accidentally a week ago yesterday at the remote Whiskey Peak fire lookout station at the head of the Applegate River on the Rogue River National Forest where he was employed for the summer.
As he was about to leave the lookout house the door swung wide and knocked over a .22 caliber rifle standing behind it. The gun discharged and the bullet pierced his leg above the knee, puncturing a sheath containing the sciatic nerve, a vein and artery." (Medford Mail Tribune)
August 21, 1936: "Jim Arnold of Oak Grove district has taken charge at Whiskey Peak lookout for the remainder of the fire season. Mr. Arnold succeeds two CCC men from Camp Applegate who assumed the post temporarily following the gun accident two weeks ago in which lookout James MacLean was seriously injured." (Medford Mail Tribune)
June 10, 1938: "Larry Kaiser, student at Southern Oregon Normal School, will be accompanied by his bride at Whiskey Peak Lookout. Thursday he was united in marriage to Margaret Franks of the Applegate." (Medford Mail Tribune)
June 24, 1938: "Orie Phillips, employed as forest service packer here, established Mr. and Mrs. Larry Kaiser on their post at Whiskey Peak during the last few days." (Medford Mail Tribune)
1942: "The two man team of Paul Stibran and Bill Zeigler manned the lookout during the winter as AWS observers. Bill's dog Two-Bits fell off Whiskey Peak two or three times during the winter, but survived to die of old age." (The History of the Rogue River National Forest, Vol. 2)
January 26, 1943: " 'Two Bits' chased an imaginary squirrel too close to the edge of a cliff, barked for help as he skidded and then fell over the ledge, a drop of 800 feet straight down.
The little fox terrier's master, Bill Ziegler, observer at a lookout station on the Rogue River National Forest, gasped at the tradedy.
Two weeks later Ziegler started down the trail to cut a pole, and just around the first curve was amazed to see 'Two Bits' climbing slowly and shakily up the trail, head down and tongue out, but with his tail wagging.
After a happy reunion and a good meal, 'Two Bits' did his best to explain that his fall had been cushioned by a deep snowdrift, that he had finally dug himself out and then negotiated the drift-choked two-and-a-half mile trail back home." (The Salt Lake Tribune)
September 12, 1969: Panorama photos were taken by C.S.
Siskiyou National Forest - 36S-10W-36
May 1940: "Seen area takes in lightning country and some man-caused fires on Briggs Creek. Suppression coverage is not extensive. Seen area along Illinois River is valuable since this is a heavily used mining area." (Plans, Guard Placement, Siskiyou National Forest)
1941: The lookout was staffed 90 days and reported to the Redwood Ranger Station.
Siskiyou National Forest
May 1940: "Position only needed during lightning season. Past 10-year lightning history indicates for its seen area that lightning fires are relatively few and far between." (Plans, Guard Placement, Siskiyou National Forest)
footnote 1: Multnomah County Library Digital Archives