Multnomah Falls, Oregon
Here are a couple more postcards from the recent trip to the Columbia Gorge in Oregon. We stopped at several waterfalls including the impressive Multnomah Falls featured on these cards.
Both cards are Impact photographics postcards designed in the United States and printed in Korea. The photographers for the lower card are listed as Craig Tuttle, Steve Terrill and Virginia Swartzendruber. The photographers for the upper card are Adam Jones/Donita Delmont, agent.
The upper falls drop 542 feet and the lower falls come down 69 feet for a total of 621 feet making Multnomah Falls among the top waterfalls in the United States for distance down. They are very impressive and the water noise is loud. There is a trail up to the Benson Footbridge but it was closed due to a rock slide that occurred in January of this year and damaged the bridge walkway. The bridge was named for Simon Benson who financed the construction in 1914. Benson donated the land with most of Multnomah Falls and also gave Portland land that included another waterfall, Wahkeena Falls. The year round source of the water for Multnomah Falls is underground springs from Larch Mountain, Spring runoff from the mountain snow pack and rainfall.
The Oregon-Washington Railroad and Navigation Company donated the land at the foot of the falls with a stipulation that a lodge be built there. The lodge was designed by A. E. Doyle and built in 1925 of local stone and today has an information center, restaurant, gift shop and a snack bar. We did go into the gift shop where I purchased the cards but we did not go into the restaurant located on the upper floor of the lodge that is supposed to have spectacular views of the falls. There is a viewing area just outside the building that also has wonderful views. The falls are so long that it was difficult to get a good picture with my small camera but here above is one. The lodge itself has been entered in the National Register of Historic Places.
There is a Native American story involving the falls called the “Princess Legend.” The tale tells of a terrible sickness that threatened the Multnomah people. An old medicine man told the people that the sickness would only leave if a maiden threw herself from a high cliff on the Big River to the rocks below. When the daughter of the Chief saw that her lover had become ill with the disease she went to the cliff and jumped to her death. The story continues by saying that today when the breeze blows through the water and a stream separates from the upper falls then the mist takes the form of the maiden in token of the Great Spirit’s acceptance of her sacrifice.
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