Coos Bay in Coos County, Oregon — The American West (Northwest)
Travel by land was difficult until about 1915.
The road between Marshfield and North Bend was not completed until 1912. Most people continued to travel by small boats around Coos Bay for several more years.
Several small gas-powered launches, called the "Mosquito Fleet" carried passengers and freight between towns along Coos Bay and up the rivers. These vessels served as mail carriers, school buses, and even churches. The last mail delivery up Coos River by boat was made in 1948.
People are not the only creatures who use the waterway for travel. Salmon and other fish travel the waterway too. The bay in front of you is connected to a network of rivers and streams necessary for a salmon to complete its lifecycle.
Location. 43° 22.045′ N, 124° 12.727′ W. Marker is in Coos Bay, Oregon, in Coos County. Marker is on Oregon Coast Highway (U.S. 101) north of Anderson Avenue, on the right when traveling north. Touch for map. Marker is located in an interpretive kiosk along the Coos Bay Board Walk. This marker is the center panel of a set of three related markers. Marker is in this post office area: Coos Bay OR 97420, United States of America.
Other nearby markers. At least 8 other markers are within walking distance of this marker Transportation (here, next to this marker); a different marker also named Transportation (here, next to this marker); The Changing Waterfront (here, next to this marker); a different marker also named The Changing Waterfront (here, next to this marker); a different marker also named The Changing Waterfront (here, next to this marker); Welcome to the Oregon Coast (within shouting distance of this marker); Shipping (within shouting distance of this marker); Koos No. 2 (within shouting distance of this marker). Touch for a list and map of all markers in Coos Bay.
Related markers. Click here for a list of markers that are related to this marker. Coos Bay Transportation
Also see . . .
1. Developments on Coos Bay 1900-1940ís. As the 20th Century began, daily life and industry on Coos Bay remained dominated by water transportation. A “mosquito fleet” of small boats plied up and down the bay carrying people and goods from town to town along the lower bay and produce and people from upriver farms to downtown markets and processing plants. Ferry boats made trips from downtown into the upper reaches of the estuary for Sunday picnics and summer time camping excursions. For those who could afford them, skiffs powered by gasoline motors were the private automobiles of the day. (Submitted on February 16, 2018, by Cosmos Mariner of Cape Canaveral, Florida.)
2. Mission boat Life-Line.
One of the more unusual vessels built in 1912 was Life-Line, a gasoline-powered 24 horsepower propeller vessel designed by George H. Hitchings and built for use as a mission boat by the Rev. G. L. Hall of the American Baptist Publications Society. Marshall summed up Life-Line's career and end as follows:
"This little ship, under zealot Captain Lund, ran up and down the coast for the Baptist Missionary Society saving the souls of erring seaman and longshoremen alike. After a long and healthy life of do-gooding, she ran ashore just south of Neahkanie. Long forgotten, the little vessel was uncovered by a bulldozer in 1949." (Submitted on February 16, 2018, by Cosmos Mariner of Cape Canaveral, Florida.)
3. Victor Charles West (1921-2002).
(Most images on this marker are those of Victor Charles West)
Victor Charles West was a lifelong collector of maritime subject matter, with a focus on Oregon maritime history from the mid-nineteenth century through the twentieth century. At an early age, Victor West learned the importance of imagery as historical narrative. From an estimated 10,000 film negatives of various historic subjects, he created a library of albums that served as a reference to the contents of the Collection. Each album entry includes a narrative history of a vessel, as well as one or more images when they (Submitted on February 16, 2018, by Cosmos Mariner of Cape Canaveral, Florida.)
Categories. • Industry & Commerce • Roads & Vehicles • Waterways & Vessels •
Credits. This page was last revised on February 19, 2018. This page originally submitted on February 16, 2018, by Cosmos Mariner of Cape Canaveral, Florida. This page has been viewed 49 times since then. Photos: 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6. submitted on February 16, 2018, by Cosmos Mariner of Cape Canaveral, Florida. • Bill Pfingsten was the editor who published this page.