Historic Hood River
We recently ran across this photo postcard in the museum files. A note claims it’s the 1854 Laughlin Cabin, but I am skeptical.
First a history refresher. William and Mary Laughlin, as well as the Farnsworths, were the first known European settlers in Hood River. The Laughlins built a simple cabin in 1852 near what is now the 1100 block of State Street, while the Farnsworths built a significantly nicer cabin on the other side of what is now 13th Street. We learned all about their difficult winter in this post. The Farnsworths abandoned their cabin shortly after Christmas. The Laughlins returned to the Dalles as soon as the snows cleared, leaving the log cabin which the Coes used as temporary housing when they arrived in 1854. The Farnsworth place became the Jenkins place soon afterwards.
This cabin is the same basic structure as the Laughlin cabin in the other post, but it doesn’t have the same number of logs or roof joists. I am inclined to accept the other image as authentic because it appeared in a book by someone who lived in the cabin, though that is not a guarantee. In this image the logs looks freshly cut, but no one was taking photographs in this area for several decades after the Laughlins built their cabin. This RPPC (real photo postcard) can be dated to 1904-1918 based on research into the history of RPPCs.
It’s possible this was a reproduction of the Laughlin cabin built in the early twentieth century, or maybe someone just looked at the postcard and thought it looked like the Laughlin cabin so they inscribed the label. In any case, it’s a nice image of a fine log cabin.