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Mail Tribune 100

March 25, 1918


For years there has been demand for a well-improved highway connecting Jackson, Klamath and Lake counties, and this not only on account of affording additional scenic advantages, but for the more important object of facilitating business dealings, notably along the line of exchanging Jackson county fruit for the grain and other farm products of our neighbors to the east.

It is safe to assume that for over 25 years practical realization of this improvement has been no more than a dream. Of course, in the meantime we have had two highways leading over in that direction, neither of which met the requisition of heavy traffic. Each route had its adherents, with the result that improvements on both never advanced beyond the temporary patching up process.

Then came the branch railroad, after which highway matters relapsed into comparative oblivion, although the matter was resurrected occasionally, especially then the demerits of the long haul and consequent expense by rail dawned upon the public.

Some time ago, under auspices of the Ashland Commercial club, a strong petition originated here and was extensively circulated in Klamath county. The local club backed up this agitation by sending its secretary, Frank J. Shinn, to Portland in order to meet the Oregon highway commission and personally urge the merits of this proposition upon their attention, with the result that the official minutes of a commission meeting held March 15, 1918, incorporate a paragraph as follows: “Mr. F. J. Shinn of the Ashland Commercial club appeared before the commission and submitted a petition which was ordered placed on file, requesting that some work be done on the road between Ashland, Klamath Falls and Lakeview. After discussing the merits of the proposition somewhat, the commission directed the engineer to make a survey of the Green Spring Mountain road between Ashland and Klamath Falls.”

Even this is a start in the right direction, and once a survey is made eliminating the heaviest grades on Green mountain, the merits of the improved highway will be apparent and further efforts will rapidly be forthcoming in behalf of active work being done in that locality, because the club is not going to allow the agitation to rest on a mere survey basis.

This improved road matter is a permanency which will benefit southern Oregon in general and not merely Ashland, consequently state aid is merely a fair proposition to all concerned. It was at this same meeting that the engineer was directed to prepare proposals and specifications for the hard surfacing of the unit of the Pacific highway adjacent to the Billings hill, another welcome bit of news for this vicinity.

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