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Mail Tribune 100: Feb. 11, 1915

Feb. 11, 1915

F.S. Bramwell, representing the interests seeking the construction of a beet sugar factory in the Rogue River valley, did not arrive at Grants Pass Wednesday, or in the city today, and further campaigning for the industrial project has been pigeonholed until next fall, and hopes for results this year have gone by the board.

Soil Expert Storey telephoned from Grants Pass Wednesday night that but 210 acres had been signed up and recorded in that section, out of a reported 2,000 acres, and that it was his duty to report to his chiefs that it would be a fallacy for them to operate in this valley at this time, for the sole reason that the acreage signed up did not justify it.

The beet sugar committee believe they will eventually secure a factory here. They feel that it could have been secured with more time, and that the month's campaign has been the medium of educating landowners and farmers to the value of beet culture, and that in the fall when the campaign is renewed, the securing of acreage will be easy.

The lateness of the season is the sole reason double the acreage was not secured.

Actual construction work on the new $110,000 federal building to be erected at Sixth and Holly streets began this morning by the Medford Concrete Construction company, who hold a sub-contract from the Puget Sound Engineering and Construction company for the basement excavation. A force of men and scrappers are at work. Stakes were driven. No ceremony was attached to the turning of the first shovelful of earth. A large crowd of sightseers gathered during the day to see the work.

It has been four years since the agitation for a federal building was started, the first step being the securing of the site. Since then federal aid for the building has been delayed due to the myriads of red tape involved in passing through Congress and the Treasury Department. Senator George E. Chamberlain has been instrumental in starting the actual work, due to his long experience and influence at Washington.

The contract calls for the occupancy of the building in 13 months. If this is fulfilled, more speed will be exercised in the future than in the past.

J.H. Holmes, government superintendent of construction, arrived Thursday with his wife, and will be in charge of the work for the government.