Historic Hood River
Postcard with a Story
Yesterday’s image showed me I have gotten through over 2000 posts without sharing an image of the Oregon Pony. The Oregon Pony was a steam locomotive which operated on the Oregon portage railroad between 1862 and 1864. This view is from a 1950-51 postcard by the Hood River Historical Society. Here is the text accompanying the postcard:
This Pony Engine was used on the Cascades Portage in Oregon, 1862-1864. For a study see Oregon Historical Quarterly, Vol 25, 1924 for the best story of the Cascades Portage, by Frank Gill.
Also, see Land files in the Hood River County Courthouse for the right of way transactions and maps. Corporation files are in The Dalles for all Hood River Companies. The are in the fire proof vault, and are very interesting and informative, as they are the originals.
This little engine is on display by the Union Depot in Portland, and belongs to the Oregon Historical Society since the Lewis and Clark Fair was held in Portland in 1905-1906. As the engine ran in our county originally, it would be a fine thing to bring it back to the Park at Cascades to celebrate the Centennial 1962.
I don’t know if it made it by 1962, but the Oregon Pony is now on display at the Cascade Lock Marine Park. Our own Arlen Sheldrake is an expert on the Pony, so perhaps he can add some fun facts.
Tags: 1860s, 1950s, Cascade Locks, locomotive, Oregon Pony, portage, railroad, steam engine, train
It was great that the pony was returned to cover in Cascade Locks after years in the open at Union Station in Portland.
The Little Engine That Could comes to mind.
Not sure about being an expert on the Oregon Pony but I am continuing to support the efforts of the Port of Cascade Locks and the Cascade Locks Historical Society in their project to build a new visitor center/renovate the museum and provide a facility to display the Pony with, hopefully, a replica flat car with “baggage” aboard. This is a major undertaking as it is currently projected to cost $4.7 million. The proposed new facility incorporates the current Museum lock tender house.
The current Pony display building has been upgraded and temperature/humidity controls have been added.
This is the first steam locomotive in the Pacific Northwest.
Arlen L Sheldrake
any ideas on the location of this picture? sure doesn't look like Union Depot (now Union Station) in downtown Portland….interesting dates 1862 – 1927
Not sure where this is, Arlen. The card implies it is at Union Station, but I agree it doesn't look like it. It also doesn't look like the Lewis and Clark Exposition, and it doesn't look like Cascade Locks.
This picture does not appear to be anywhere near Union Station, but it was in the landscaping, uncovered in the rain, across the driveway from the station entrance for years and possibly decades.. Before returning to Cascade Locks it was restored cosmetically by Paul Class, not operable but all parts were made movable. Seems the Locks promised a roof but went farther with complete enclosure and possible humidity controlled.
I have been in the area of Union Station the last few days. Nothing about those hills in the background match what I can see.
Looks more like The Dalles.
The Oregon Pony looks to be on wooden skids possibly to be moved. On the left side it has a slight look to be a turn table. On the right in distance it looks slightly like fuel or oil tanks that are white. Definitely not union station to much elevation.