1952: The new lookout on a 30 foot steel tower was 99% completed by the end of the year. A cost of $1000.00 included $200.00 for materials and the balance for labor.
1953: The lookout cab was sealed with plywood and painted.
1958: The slash and brush from around the lookout was piled and burned.
1977: The lookout tower was moved to the Umatilla Army Depot.
Bureau of Indian Affairs - 1S-34E-02
Umatilla Indian Reservation - 3N-36E-31
Umatilla National Forest - 1N-37E-05
Umatilla Indian Reservation - 2S-34E-13
(under construction) - 1940 - National Archives, Seattle
July 27, 1939: "Patrick Gray returned yesterday from Umatilla, where he stopped for the purpose of working up the annual forestry and grazing report. While there he took occasion to visit the Johnson Creek area in company with Mr. M. Gober, to look over a telephone construction possibility. While on the ground he inspected the site that had been chosen for the erection of a lookout tower, Project No. 31, for which $1,000 has been authorized for expenditure this fiscal period. It appears from the justification that the project contemplates the erection of a 40' tower, to be constructed for the most part out of local hewn material. Both Mr. Gray and Mr. Gober were of the opinion that the construction of this project as proposed would be undesirable as a tower so constructed at the location chosen would not at all satisfactorily fill the purpose for which it was being erected. Mr. Gray advised Mr. F.R. Anderson, Senior Clerk in Charge, as to the apparent undesirability of going ahead with the lookout tower project as contemplated and recommended to Mr. Anderson that no work be undertaken until someone from this office had visited Umatilla Agency and gone into the matter thoroughly." (Letter from theProduction Coordinating Officer to Associate Forest Engineer, c/o Yakima Agency)
October 10, 1939: "There is enclosed an approved copy of your contract I-1-ind-CIV-118, dated October 10, 1939, for furnishing a steel lookout tower, 82'6". to the Indian Service. Formal order was mailed you under date of October 10, 1939." (Letter to International-Stacey Corporation from Purchasing Office, Department of the Interior)
October 13, 1939: "Reference is made to your letter of October 12 relative to the location of the lookout tower proposed for construction on the Umatilla Reservation and in which you request that some member of this office experienced in fire detection structures visit you Agency to pass on the desirability of the site that has been tentatively decided upon. This letter is to advise that one of our men will visit your Agency in the not distant future to go over the matter in all detail in the field to the end that the most advantageous point be chosen for the erection of the proposed lookout tower." (Letter to the Superintendent, Umatilla Indian Agency from Production Coordinating Officer, Spokane)
October 14, 1939: "We received a copy of the order to the International-Stacey Corp. for the said Lookout Tower and we notice the shipment has been routed by railroad. We will not erect this tower until next May 1940. If there is any material savings could we ship this tower to Portland, Oregon by water. As our appropriation is vary small we are anxious to make any savings possible." (Letter from Superintendent, Umatilla Indian Agency to Purchasing Office, Department of the Interior)
October 26, 1939: "Referring to your letter of October 14 regarding shipment of the lookout tower ordered for your agency from the International-Stacey Corporation, in which you suggest that if possible shipment be made by water if there was any material savings to be gained; you are advised that on account of the fact that the Government gas accepted delivery f.o.b. Columbus, Ohio, there would be no appreciable savings if shipment were made by water. The rail-water-rail rates are higher from Columbus, Ohio to Pendleton, Oregon than all rail rates under which advantage can be taken of considerable land grant allowances. Columbus, Ohio is to far inland to make shipment by water advantageous to the Government." (Letter to the Superintendent, Umatilla Indian Agency from Purchasing Officer, Department of the Interior)
February 28, 1940: "Dear Sir: Will you kindly advise if our invoice #6944 dated November 29, 1939 in the amount of $1399.00 has been approved for payment by your department. We have been advised by Department of Interior that payment must come direct from your department, and in order to properly set up our cash budget, we would like to have some idea when we may expect remittance." (Letter to Superintendent, Umatilla Indian Agency from the International Stacey Corporation)
March 1, 1940: "Reference is made to Office letter of January 31, 1940, addressed to the International Derrick and Equipment Company of Columbus, Ohio, regarding payment for the steel lookout tower shipped to your Agency under Purchase Order cc-11959, Contract I-1-Ind-Civ-118, at a cost of $1399.00, the second paragraph of which request you to advise this office as why payment has not as yet been made. Up to the present date we have received no reply therein." (Letter to Supervisor, Umatilla Indian Agency from the Purchasing Officer, Department of the Interior)
March 14, 1940: "Project No. 31, Lookout tower: This project was originally set up and approved in Office letter of March 20, 1939 and $1000.00 allocated for the purchase and erection of a 40 foot wooden lookout tower. Under date of August 11, 1939 Mr. N.F. Gaywood, Associate Forest Engineer from your office, after a review of this project and inspection of the proposed site, recommended the erection of an 80 foot steel tower. It was estimated that this change in plans would require the expenditure of an additional $1000.00. No additional funds being available the amount was taken from two projects which were abandoned for the present fiscal year. This recommendation was approved by the Indian Office ubder date of August 22, 1939, making the total budget for this project $2000.00. As stated in Office letter of August 22, 1939, the purchase of the steel tower was to be handled by the Purchasing Office. The cost of this tower was $1399.00 and the additional sum of $476.33 for transportation charges, bringing the total cost to $1877.33, leaving $122.67 for the erection of the tower. In addition to the amount remaining it is estimated that it will require an additional $500.00 to erect the tower $200 will be required for materials and $400.00 for labor. This estimate is based on information furnished by the Warmsprings Agency at which jurisdiction a similar tower was erected." (Letter from the Umatilla Indian Agency to Frank Lenzie, Production Coordinating Office, Spokane)
1940: An 82'6" International-Stacey steel tower with a 7x7 steel cab was constructed by the CCC-Indian Division. This was the only lookout constructed on the Umatilla Indian Reservation.
June 30, 1940: "Analysis of Cost per Project" Project No. 31 Lookout tower 85 foot steel tower Started - February 1940 Finished - June 1940 Amount allotted: $2,200.00 Man-days to date: 121 Narrative: Project 31: A 85' steel lookout tower was erected during the months of May and June 1940 according to specifications of the manufacturer. No skilled labor was hired in the construction of this tower. The expenditures $146.28 shown were obligations incurred as of June 30, 1940 and not paid until the following fiscal year." (Analysis of cost per project)
July 8, 1940: "We have our tower erected, with roof, walls, sub-floor and sash in place on the cab. There is much more to be done in the cab yet but if you wish our telephone could be installed in the cab when it is convenient for you to do so." (Letter to the Telephone Supervisor, Colville Indian Agency from Superintendent, Umatilla Indian Agency)
October 19, 1940: "Project No. 31, Lookout tower. This project was practically completed by July 1, 1940 except for a few details such as fitting up cabin and securely bolting the same. Some parts were not properly machined so that it was impossible to make a good or tight joint. An old style fire finder was borrowed from the local Forest Service Office and used during fire season." (Letter to the Commissioner of Indian Affairs, Washington D.C.)
Umatilla National Forest - 3S-32E-26
January 12, 1951: "The garage from Lucky Strike was moved in and set up at the district guard residence. The Lucky Strike house was set on a concrete foundation at Tower Mtn. and the brick chimney rebuilt." (Ukiah Ranger District Annual Report)
January 27, 1956: "Lucky Strike LO was eliminated from the detection system, and the tower torn down." (Ukiah Ranger District Annual Report)
Umatilla National Forest - 4N-38E
August 1947 - Oregon Department of Forestry Collection
September 1956 - USFS, Mark Swift Collection
1928-29-30: This site was used as a daily patrol lookout.
August 1936: "Back in 1928-29-30 when I covered McIntyre Point and High Ridge daily by the equestrian method, I used to think that McIntyre Point would be one of the last places I would want to stay. Now I feel that I would rather be here than any other station I have ever been on. I have considerable company; neighbors within one hundred and fifty yards, and real neighbors at that, water and wood handy, a good house and garage, and one of the prettiest views on the Umatilla. Don C. Rohn"
July 10, 1966: "Another 'oldtimer' on the district passes from the picture this year with the closing of the lookout at McIntyre Point. This unique lookout, actually a cabin built out on a promontory overlooking the South Fork of the Walla Walla River, had running water piped to it, something not found in lookout towers. McIntyre Lookout had been built and manned first about 1926. Lands formerly protected by it are now handled by the Oregon State Forest Department and by aerial surveys. Many people also live there, pointed out district fire control officer, Wes Slaughter. Over 800 summer cabins are listed in the area covered by this station, and residents of them alert fire fighters to blazes when they crop up." (Walla Walla Union-Bulletin)
September 1931: "The other day our Summit fireman-lookout, Bill Monroe, was returning to his station by car from a small lightning fire when he was startled by an airplane shadow and a lot of noise. He stopped to see what was making all the excitement and watched the plane circle the fire he had just left. Following it further he saw it circle another spot and noticed a small puff of smoke above the trees. Again the plane dived at him and zoomed away to circle the two spots a second time, then went about its business. By this time Bill knew what the maneuvers meant and was on his way. He called the Dispatcher by portable phone just as the first lookout report came in and was able to order the proper number of men and supplies and take action himself about an hour sooner than would have otherwise been possible. Some time later the Varney Air Lines called from Pasco to report the fire. A letter of appreciation has been written to the company with a copy for the pilot. After two days and nights of hard grubbing on a couple of small ones, Bill says that it cheers a fellow up to know that at least one man outside the organization is interested enough to go way out of his way. Let's get a plane, Pat, one with a radio. J.G. Clouston" (Six Twenty-Six)
March 17, 1949: "The old Summit Tree Tower was dismantled, for safety reasons." (Pendleton Ranger District Annual Report)
TIP TOP MOUNTAIN
Umatilla National Forest > Oregon Department of Forestry - 1S-35E-27
1961 - Umatilla National Forest
July 2008 - Ron Kemnow photo
July 1936: "In July a secondary fire danger station was set up. This station gathers data on fuel inflammability, wind direction and velocity and reports this information three times daily to Kamela where it is posted on the fire danger board. (Umatilla Buckaroo)
August 1936: "Harold Hilary has been lookout on Tip Top since August 11th." (Umatilla Buckaroo)
August 8, 1947: "Dear Mr. Ewing, Recently Mr. C.C. Curl purchased the land adjacent to Tip Top Lookout. He seems to believe that the land on which the tower stands belongs to him. Our tax roll shows that Mr. Curl owns all of Sec. 27 T1S R35E except one acre on which no ownership is shown. I thought perhaps that it might be the area where the tower stands and owned by the U.S. Forest Service. It would be appreciated if you could give any information to help clear this matter up. Yours very truly, L.M. Compton, District Warden, NE Oregon District." (Letter to Supervisor, Umatilla National Forest from District Warden)
1957: "Recommendations: A new tower is needed to replace the one on Tip Top Lookout. The Indian Service will give the District the steel tower that is now at the Johnson Creek site. We would use about 50 foot of this tower. This would give the District a great deal more visibility." (Northeast Oregon District - Oregon Department of Forestry Annual Report - 1957)
1958: The District secured the steel tower lookout from the Indian Agency that was located on Johnson Creek and dismantled it and hauled it to LaGrande. The District plans to replace the Tip Top Lookout tower with this structure.
1959: The completion of the steel work on the Tip Top Lookout tower. All that remains to be done on the Tip Top tower is the assembling of the 14x14 cab. The parts for the cab have all been cut and as soon as the weather permits the work will be completed.
1960: The completion of the Tip Top Lookout and the construction of an 8x7 storage house under the tower. (1958,59,60 Annual Reports to the Oregon Department of Forestry)
Umatilla National Forest - 6S-34E-13
1957 - Umatilla National Forest
July 2008 - Ron Kemnow photo
1935: The construction of a 92-foot Aermotor steel tower with a 7x7 steel cab. The living quarters were in a separate ground cabin.
September 1935: "One bolt of lightning knocked a small lodgepole pine to splinters within 200 feet of the 80 foot steel tower on Tower Mountain." (Six Twenty-Six)
July 1936: "Our White Creek fire which Tower Mountain reported on the 21st of July was a hold over fire from a thunder storm which originated the 8th of July. It keeps one wondering where the next one will be." (Umatilla Buckaroo)
January 12, 1951: "The Lucky Strike house was on a concrete foundation at Tower Mtn. and the brick chimney rebuilt." (Ukiah National Forest Annual Report)
UKIAH RANGER STATION
Umatilla National Forest - 5S-31E-14
A 60-foot timber tower built to accommodate both a water tank and lookout cab.