| The Agency Valley Cemetery,
near Beulah Reservoir, 15 miles north of
Juntura, OR received a facelift by NWOCTA. This is how it looked
from a hill to the north as we started work 7 o'clock Saturday
morning, May 12, 2001. Wayne Burck got the action going with his
chain saw, and Dick Klein started in with pruning shears. I climbed
the hill to get pictures. This is how it looked when we started.
long Gail & Muriel Carbiener came with a trailer full of
tools, concrete, water, and a brand new OCTA marker honoring Levi
Scott, pioneer of the Southern Route to Oregon. While Wayne Burck
and Dick Klein cut out all the sagebrush between the gravestones,
Muriel Carbiener, Jean Bennet, Dell Rose Banks, Roger Riolo,
Charles Prince and I hauled the cut brush to a pile outside the
cemetery to be hauled away by the BLM.
Mike Banks had earlier surveyed the cemetery with
Gail Carbiener, and decided it needed a new gate. He took
measurements and pre-cut all the lumber at home. Mike and his
grandson, Michael Banks tore down the old gate, built and
installed the new one and by the time the cemetery was cleared it
had a new gate as well.
Roger Riolo put the finishing touches on the cleanup with his
mighty weed whacker, an pretty soon I climbed the hill again to
get this picture of the results. Pretty good job I would say. We
did not attempt to clear everything, just enough to be able to see
all the grave markers. Some of the markers were raised on concrete
leader, Gail Carbiener, asked me to get a picture of Dick Klein doing the
ceremonial ground-breaking, since he had come the farthest, from
Bremerton Washington. Of course that meant Dick did almost all the
work of digging the hole for the OCTA marker. Dick is one of the
most dedicated workers I know, diligent not only in research, but
also in physical work. I have worked with him on several
trail-marking treks, and he never shirks.
most famous person in this cemetery, which was begun in 1883, is
Levi Scott, pioneer road builder. He and his sons plux others of
his family rest here. And, as Arlie Holt remarked in his
dedication of the OCTA marker, "Now he will rest with the
honor due him as a great pioneer with a
great vision. Among other thins, Levi Scott founded the town of
Scottsburg. It was a metropolis of Southern Oregon until it was
wiped out in the flood of 1861. Levi Scott is perhaps most famous
for building the Southern Route to Oregon.
about noon Tom & Mary Gray, Ray Westcott, and Hugh
Lackey of the Malheur Country Historical Society appeared.
Pictured here are Stafford Hazelett, Mildred Ariola, Mona Mendiola
(great granddaughters of Levi Scott), and Arlie After
everybody taking pictures of everybody else, Arlie dedicated the
OCTA marker with a very impassioned speech. Arlie Holt, Stafford
Hazelett, and Charles Prince have been working for several
years on annotating and publishing the journals of Levi Scott. the
full text of the marker is below.
Captain Levi Scott
lived a long and eventful life. He was born in the American Bottom
in Illinois in 1797. He was orphaned at a very early age and was on
his own since six years of age. He only received three months of
formal schooling yet was self educated. Overcoming his limitations,
he played pioneering roles in both Illinois and Iowa where his
talents as community builder began to develop. While there he was
elected captain in the Iowa Militia. It was during this time that he
fought in the Black Hawk War.
After the death of his wife, he crossed the
plains to the Oregon Country in the company of his son John in 1844,
and once there, his leadership capacities were in play again. He was
very much involved in early events in the development of the
Oregon Territory. He played a major role in opening up the southern
route into the Willamette Valley in 1846 and led the first
immigration through by that route. He successfully brought
another train through the next year. He carried dispatches to
California during the Cayuse War. He founded the once thriving town
of Scottsburg which bears his name as do Scotts Valley and Scott
Mountain, all in Douglas County. From that county he was both a
member of the Territorial Legislature for three years, and a member
of the State Constitutional Convention.
Cattle and sheep raising enterprises engaged
him through many of the later years of his life. He started first in
Canyonville, then moved on into the country of the Umpqua and Rogue
rivers. From there he went down into Willow Creek in California,
sold out, and proceeded to the valley of the Grande Ronde
River, where he raised sheep again. Later he drove the sheep to the
mining country in Idaho and he became involved in road and bridge
The aging Scott spent most of his last fifteen years
quietly with family in the Polk County seat of Dallas, Oregon.While
on a trip to visit his son John, a rancher, in Malheur County near
Beulah, in the valley below this cemetery, the vigorous Scott died
at age 93, in 1890, after a short illness.It was said of Capt. Scott
that he was an ordinary man who achieved extraordinary things.
Wherever he went, he left his mark on the land for the future.
More to come