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Klamath Letter-Writing Entices Eastern Tourists

The Klamath Falls Commercial Club, reminding everyone in 1916 that it was Letter-Writing Week, urged correspondence that would attract Easterners to Oregon.  Club President Fred E. Fleet said nearly all Oregon’s cities were participating in the campaign “to induce visits by Eastern tourists during the coming season.”

Writing in the Klamath Falls Evening Herald on Jan. 20, 1916, Fleet urged citizens to send letters to their friends, “telling of the wonderful, scenic attractions of the state and conveying a personal invitation to visit and see them.”  

Fleet called it, in his own words, a “simple and inexpensive method” of drawing Klamath County’s “advantages to the attention of prospective tourists, and one, which … cannot help but produce big results.”

Fleet wrote that the county was “the richest in the state in natural resources,” and added, “With Crater Lake, the Upper Klamath Lake, Bird Island, the famous Lava Beds, and our various other wonders to exploit, we should be the busiest little bunch … (of Oregon letter writers) … during this week.”

Commenting that public school children had already responded to the letter-writing campaign, Fleet pleaded, “Can we not enlist more of their fathers and mothers?”

Source: Fleet, Fred L. "THIS IS LETTER WRITING WEEK; ARE YOU BUSY?" The Evening Herald 20 Jan. 1916 [Klamath Falls, Ore.] : 1. Print.

Kernan Turner is the Southern Oregon Historical Society’s volunteer editor and coordinator of the As It Was series broadcast daily by Jefferson Public Radio. A University of Oregon journalism graduate, Turner was a reporter for the Coos Bay World and managing editor of the Democrat-Herald in Albany before joining the Associated Press in Portland in 1967. Turner spent 35 years with the AP before retiring in Ashland.