Wednesday, April 28, 2010

Adams County Makes the News - Council Leader #7

The Council Leader
Ivan M. Durrell, Editor and Publisher


Council, Washington County, Idaho

March 25, 1910

Yes, clean up. Ask your wife if housecleaning time is not the main idea at this season. Let’s get together and show the women that we men can become filled with the same spirit, can show the same pride in clean streets, alleys and backyards that the women show in clean houses. And right now is the time to begin.

Don’t wait. In a few days, the town will be filled with home-seekers—people who have grown tired of eastern ways, people who are looking for a better place to make their homes, people who are looking for better conditions. Surely we cannot afford to let them come into our town and find things in so filthy a condition as they will be if we don’t get together at once. It is a blow to our pride, we realize, to know that things are as they are, but it is true. The streets, alleys, and backyards are simply rotten, no other word will describe it. Now is the time to get at it and clean up. Let us inaugurate a movement that will cause out neighboring towns to turn green with envy. We can get busy in such a way that will turn the eyes of the whole state on Council. We have been advertised all over the country as being in the center of the greatest apple-growing district in the world. Why not be advertised as being the cleanest little town in Idaho?

July 5, 1910

Council is the only town in Washington County that is using the Rocky Mountain Bell Telephone exchange, and the time is near at hand when the people of this vicinity will be operating an independent telephone exchange with decent instruments and at a reasonable charge. The time is nearing an end when the large corporations can extend an arm and hold the common people in their grip, unable to move, while they serve them with anything they want and at any price they wish to charge. Why should we be bound under the grip of this mighty corporation while our sister towns are enjoying their freedom? A meeting of the telephone users and those interested in the welfare of Council is called to be held at the Bowman-Holmes Company’s office next Wednesday evening, and every person desiring to maintain a telephone in his place of business is earnestly requested to be present.

July 15, 1910

Owing to the infinitely rotten service given the people of Council and Council Valley by the Rocky Mountain Bell Telephone Company, together with the exorbitant charges inflicted upon the people residing herein, a meeting of all persons interested is hereby called to be held at the office of the Bowman-Holmes Company, in Council on Wednesday July 20th at 8:30 p.m. to take steps to organize an Independent Telephone Company.

This matter is of vital importance and should have the attention of everyone interested in the welfare of the Council Valley district, and if the people will but stand together, it will be a matter of only a few weeks until we will have decent telephone service and that too at a reasonable charge.


April 22, 1910

E.W. Bowman purchased a five-passenger White Steamer Touring automobile to be used to transport the land seekers over the valley. Mr. Bowman, with his worthy partner C. W. Holmes, has built up a very profitable real estate business, and this summer they expect to locate several new families on Council Valley apple soil. The auto will come in very handy as now-a-days a team is too slow for the rushing real estate business that is going on in Council Valley. Several families already came to Council this spring and are well satisfied that this is the prime apple district in the northwest. With a family living and prospering on every ten acres of Council Valley’s superior ground, we will be living in a city of fruit ranches in a very few years, where prosperity and liberty can never be excelled.

August 15, 1910
Submitted by E. W. Bowman

Council is growing and there is no reason why the town should not be a trifle more progressive. There is no reason why that part of town development the responsibility for which rests solely on the broad shoulders of the city’s manly councilmen should have been dropped with a dull and sickening thud.

To illustrate: last summer there was much activity, there was a vivid and glorious awakening astir and a general movement toward progress on the part of the city council. The people are still working for town advancement, but the council—well, the council has apparently been ushered into the whitherness of the whence. During that brief period of general activity, there was an ordinance passed-- marvelous effort—and it was a sidewalk ordinance. It provided that when the walks about town in the business section should have passed the age of usefulness, cement walks should be laid. As a result, some good walks were laid—a part of the main business street was paved, but when the east side of Billie Brown’s place was reached, there was a sudden cessation of the good work, and the aged board walk that for lo these many years has been a menace was permitted to lie on in undisturbed and ghastly agedness.

A year has passed. Another winter’s snows have dissolved beneath the warm
spring Chinook, and still the walk remains. Slowly, the decay of time eats into the life of the wood thereof while the honored city council sleepeth. In the dark silences of night, some good Samaritan nails down a loose board, causing the Thomas kittens which ramble around beneath this artery of commerce to crawl up from under the side instead coming straight through as is their wont and privilege. Another charming stroll that first greets the new arrival, is the stretch that extends from the depot. This was to have been a cement walk a long weary year ago. To the careless and casual observer, it still bears a marked resemblance to wood. But what’s the use? The city council sleepeth the long sleep. Perhaps by heroic effort or miracle they may again awaken.

E. W. Bowman

compiled by Eberle Umbach


  1. Loved the bit on the spring cleaning!

  2. Hi Willow: I really liked that section myself. Thanks!

  3. Both the call for involvement in community services such as cleaning up the locality and the distrust of big corporations are themes that are echoed in the General Election campaign we are just going through. 100 years and little changes.

  4. Hi Alan: Plus ca change, plus c'est la meme chose! Thanks for stopping by.

  5. Slowly, the decay of time eats into the life of the wood thereof while the honored city council sleepeth. My goodness, that's downright purple!


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