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Ingram, Orrin Henry, 1830-1918 / Autobiography, Orrin Henry Ingram : May, 1830--December, 1912

Mills--booms--Dells dam,   pp. 49-52 PDF (865.8 KB)

What "might have been",   pp. 52-53 PDF (437.0 KB)

Page 52

and would be forced to raft them, which would seem to be im-
               WHAT MIGHT HAVE BEEN
    If the peaple of Chippewa Falls had joined with Eau
 Claire we could have got legislation to prohibit the driving of
 loose logs in that part of the river navigable for small boats,
 because at that time the United States government had not
 made an appropriation to improve the navigation of the river.
 That was the opinion of Chief Justice Dixon of our supreme
 court, and of Senator Vilas. They advised us to go to the
 legislature for such a law, but Chippewa and Eau Claire could
 not think alike. If they had done so, there would be millions
 of logs on the Chippewa river yet to be manufactured, and it
 would have required a railroad on each side of it to the Mississ-
 ippi to carry the produce of the mills that would have been built
 along this river. We cut for twenty or twenty-five years on the
 Chippewa and its tributaries, above here, from five hundred
 millions to seven hundred twenty-five millions of feet of logs
 a year, and only a small portion of them was manufactured
 on the river, most of them being driven past here into Beef
 Slough to supply mills along the Mississippi, some of which
 as far down as St. Louis, were getting logs from the Chippewa.
 If we had got that legislation the Chippewa Valley would be
 one of the richest valleys in the whole Northwest country; yet,
 notwithstanding these mistakes, the Chippewa valley is a
 good valley, and when its agricultural possibilities are develop-
 ed it will become still more important, as the lands north of
 us from which the timber has been cut will be among the best
 agricultural lands in any of the states. Some of us used to
 think that when the pine was cut off this region would not
 amount to much, but since it is gone the hardwood and hem-
 lock growing on the same land are valuable. The northern
part of this state has already become one of the best sections
of our whole country for dairying because of the abundant

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