Editors Note: Yes, it is New Years Eve and I am geeking out, writing, and watching over a loved one who has been hospitalized with a nasty flu bug. We hope to return home soon. On nights like these, I dig into those piles of “things I want to do” and I grabbed for something easy to post as the last article of 2023! This one is fun and you can all learn a bit- and that is a good way to exercise your brains before you go out and put a dent in ’em. Some local history tonight by my buddy and fellow local boy and historian, Jeff LeRiche– Thanks, Jeff! And Happy Holidays everyone!
Stories from the Long Bridge- by Jeff LeRiche – This post originally appeared in the wildly popular Facebook Hillsboro History Group; We Remember Hillsboro, Oregon-
In earlier days the bridge carrying Baseline Street over Dairy Creek between Hillsboro and Cornelius was known as the Long Bridge. It was a landmark and meeting spot and if mentioned, anyone in the area would know what you were referring to without further explanation. It was then, as it is now, the main route from Forest Grove, Cornelius, and parts west into Hillsboro. In 1898 a Hillsboro Argus article mentions that it was used by several hundred people every week.
Near the east end of the bridge was the Masonic Order and the Independent Order of Odd Fellows (IOOF) cemetery (est.1860), a slaughterhouse and grounds with a track where horse races were held.
On the west end was Job Hill, which could become rough in the winter with muddy ruts, named after farmer Noah Jobe, who farmed on the south side of Baseline. The land under the bridge and to the north was owned by William Harrison Taylor and wife Dora (Jobe) Taylor.
The first mention of the Long bridge that I have found in local newspapers was in 1874. It existed before then however as an article at this time reported that the county road supervisor was examining the bridge and found that the timbers were reasonably sound and that the cover (deck) did not justify replacement at that time. I have collected articles of events that occurred at or near the Long Bridge that I plan to share from time to time under the heading; Stories From the Long Bridge.
Here is one:
On a Sunday afternoon in 1895, a team from Johnson’s livery stable in the Grove, drawing a carriage in which sat three ladies and one gentleman, met, on the long bridge spanning Dairy Creek, a freight wagon, loaded with boxes. The carriage horses took fright and commenced to back. They wrenched the sideguards from the bridge by backing and pitched the carriage and load to the ground below, a distance of sixteen feet. The team broke free from the wagon and did not go over but did go toward Cornelius. One lady jumped out on the bridge. The others went over. Fortunately, none were seriously injured.
Here is the Long Bridge today: Now you know where it is- more about our local History, and are richer for it! Look for More of Jeff’s great work coming up soon and JOIN the nearly 7,000 Hillsboro History lovers over at We Remember Hillsboro and learn more than you ever could hope to know about the place they called Sin City!