Beaverton: Our Town – Our Story
“The more things change, the more they stay the same,” is attributed to French journalist Alphonse Karr. Written in 1849, it has come to mean that current events thought to be new and different are very similar to what has happened before. It seems that history does repeat itself.
NOW (2015) “Taking care of our veterans is a cost of war. If you can spend six trillion dollars sending people to war, you can spend a few billion dollars taking care of them when they come home.” Bernie Sanders, U.S. Senator from Vermont.
THEN (1921) “Not a cent of the money so far appropriated by Congress for the care of war veterans and suffering from disability or wounds has been spent for hospitals…to provide for proper facilities for… veterans suffering from mental disorders.” Neuropsychiatrist Dr. Thomas Salmon testifying before Congress.
In the years after World War I, returning servicemen suffered from what was then called shell shock, now generally known as post-traumatic stress disorder. Dialogue concerning rehabilitation, medical care, vocational training, and treatment for war neurosis would continue for many years.
NOW (2015) The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention indicate 33% of adults and 17% of youth in the United States are obese. Their strategy for healthy living is adopting a way of life that focuses less on stopgap nutritional changes and more on healthful eating and regular physical activity.
THEN (1922-1926) “Now fat individuals have always been considered a joke, but you are a joke no longer. Instead of being looked upon with friendly tolerance and amusement, you are now viewed with distrust, suspicion, and even aversion!” Diet and Health: With Key to the Calories. 1918. Written by Los Angeles physician Lulu Hunt Peters, it was the first widely-read tome about losing weight by counting calories and remained on the best seller list from 1922-1926.
NOW (2015) The Beaverton City Council approved the annual increase in the monthly water demand charge and water consumption rate.
THEN (1922) “Be it resolved by the Town Council of the Town of Beaverton as follows: That whereas present funds are insufficient and inadequate for the purpose of financing and carrying on the water system of the town of Beaverton and additional funds are needed to maintain said water system and provide a suitable sinking fund…be it therefore resolved that the minimum water rate per water user for the town of Beaverton be increased twenty five cents ($3.60 in 2015) for each, every, and all water users said new increase in rate…to take effect after the first day of February, A.D., 1922”.
Municipal water came to Beaverton, population 500, in December 1913, a time of celebration for residents who now had plenty for personal use and first-rate fire protection. After contracting with the Tualatin Valley Water Company to extend main and lateral pipelines from Hillsboro, they began to install nine hydrants and 20 fire plugs in October. Master plumber and prominent town businessman Elmer Stipe was kept busy connecting hookups and making repairs to wooden water mains.
Other times and topics for future consideration: natural foods (1900), traffic congestion in Beaverton. (1950s), and shopping locally (1960s).
This story was researched and written by Vineet Apte, High School Volunteer with the Beaverton Historical Society. For more stories about local history, visit:
Categorised in: How We Lived
This post was written by Michael Wong