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Oregon Department of Corrections representative visits Madras to discuss possible prison site 25 years ago


June 9, 1921

On last Friday, in the section east of Ashwood known as the Muddy Creek section, occurred one of the worst cloud bursts and waterspouts that has ever occurred in the territory. In a letter to County Roadmaster Raymond Heider, Jesse Kilts, well-known resident of that section says, "The cloud burst today (Friday) was serious and did a great deal of damage. Muddy Creek fill is completely washed out and the bridge at Davis' is gone. To a great extent, the road is torn up and in many places it is filled with rock. My impression is that it is much worse farther down the creek. I believe the bridge at the Frates place is out as I don't see how it could possibly stand the strain of the rushing waters. Muddy Creek was a wide flooded river taking trees and boulders with it. From the top of the hill at Ollers I could see Cherry Creek was full to the banks." Mr. Heider left Wednesday morning to view the damage and prepare for the necessary repairs. This is a portion of the road from Ashwood to Mitchell and was only recently completed. People who had traveled the road say that it was an excellent piece of road construction, being better than the average road in this section. It is probable that rebuilding the road will commence at once, although members of the County Court have, as yet, not learned the exact condition of it.


June 6, 1946

On the day of the recent water celebration, the editor of the Pioneer was a guest in the car of T. Leland Brown, attorney for the Jefferson Water Conservancy district, with S.H. Boardman, state parks superintendent, and Marshal N. Dana, editor of the Oregon Journal, on the ride from the Madras airbase to the Rodman place, scene of the formal ceremonies.

During the ride Mr. Boardman told members of the party briefly of plans for an elaborate development of the Cove Palisades Park in Jefferson County.

In his brief discussion he revealed that this park may become one of the most unique, from the standpoint of the geologist, on the globe. Currently developments are already under way are of primary interest to fishermen, who come from all parts of the nation to seek the famed redsides of Central Oregon. New facilities and new roads and trails will not only interest fishermen but also international geologists and tourist, seeking rare sights.

Mr. Boardman promised that he would send the Pioneer a comprehensive summary of plans of the proposed park development, which will include a magnificent swimming pool and hotel. Keeping his promise, he has forwarded his own recommendations to the Oregon State Highway commission and an article entitled, "The Cove, a Palisaded Park of Geological Significance," written by W.A. Langille, state parks historian.

Accompanying the parks information, Mr. Boardman wrote as follows:

"I wish to thank you at this time for the many courtesies you extended me while visiting with you and your people the Saturday of the celebration. You have a wonderful project in the making, one of the finest in the state. I hope to make the Cove one of the finest parks in the state.

The Pioneer will print the Langille article and the statement of Mr. Boardman serially during the coming weeks. It is suggested that Jefferson County readers keep their papers, in order that they may have for reference the entire story of the park on conclusion of its publication. It will be worthy of a place in family scrap books.

By W.A. Langille

The Cove Palisades State Park is located in Jefferson County occupying all, or part, of seventeen sections in Township 11 and 12 south, range 12 east, W.M.

The north boundary is approximately one-and-one-half miles below the junction of the Metolius River with the Deschutes, its south margin approximately one mile south of the county bridge over Crooked River, and less than a half mile south of the Deschutes crossing, a maximum length of six miles and varying from a quarter mile to three-and-a-quarter miles in width, covering most of the Crooked River and Deschutes canyons for almost the entire park length.

Of this area 2,671 acres are leased from the United States by and through the Central Oregon grazing project, La-OR-2, under a 50-year Cooperative and license agreement dated October 21, 1941. Another 2,582 acres are also leased by and through the bureau of reclamation, under the terms of an annual permit, first dated March 9, 1949. This permit is renewable from year to year until the area is needed for reclamation purposes. In addition, 320 acres were purchased from the state land board, 800 acres from Jefferson County, and 423 acres from seven private owners, the total as of June 30, 1942, being 7,066 acres of impressive scenic grandeur, and includes some of the finest trout fishing water in the state, all set aside for the enjoyment and edification of Oregon citizens and Oregon visitors.

The recreational features of the park were initiated in 1937 and the project, with its accomplished development, was tentatively transferred to the Oregon State Highway commission in 1938, but its care was not fully assumed by the State parks department until June 1, 1941, when the present resident caretaker, R.H. Rands, was placed in charge.

The first development for recreational purposes was by CCC forces, under the direction of the personnel of the Central Oregon grazing project, LA-OR-2. Work was started on the small flat area at the west end of the Crooked River bridge. Here an acre, more or less, was cleared and sowed to lawn grass, a water system installed, tables and benches hewn from juniper trees were set up, with an adequate number of park stoves and essential out-buildings.


June 10, 1971

As soon as a lease arrangement can be decided upon by the Jefferson County Airport Commission and the Madras City Council, construction should begin on a new hangar at the Madras Airport.

Charles Skeans, Madras High School vice-principal and private, pilot approached the city council with the idea at Tuesday's council meeting. Skeans said that he, Norm Hyder, Dick Lindley, and Stafford Cook would like to get started on a small, three-plane hangar as soon as possible.

The council adopted a motion made by councilmen Robert Duke recommending that the airport commission prepare a ten-year lease with an option to renewal, for two ten-year periods. Such an arrangement, the council felt, would provide the leasees a fair amount of security while in no way would bind the city of Madras to any future financial obligations.


June 12, 1996

The Oregon Department of Corrections is looking for six large sites for state prisons, and two small sites for prison work camps.

A representative from the corrections department was in Madras this week, discussing the matter with local government officials and business people.

ZaDean Auyer, corrections department facilities siting coordinator, said that if people in Jefferson County are interested in having the corrections department consider the Madras area as a possible state prison site, the local governments should pass resolutions indicating this.

Local jurisdictions have through the month of July to indicate that they are interested, Auyer said.

A large prison would employ between 500 and 550 people. The smaller facilities will employ between 100 and 150 people. The estimated annual payroll for each major facility is $12.5 million.

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