From the Past: Tom Phelps

TEN YEARS AGO: Tom Phelps took over as Philomath Fire & Rescue's fire chief in August 2007. Dale Staib, who led the department for 13 years, retired in July.

100 Years Ago


PLYMOUTH: The Good Times Club of Plymouth met last Saturday night when resolutions were drawn up condemning the road west to the bridge from Corvallis on the Philomath road. This road has long been an eyesore to this community. No other road out of Corvallis is in this shape, and unless rebuilt by that city, this community will cease trading in Corvallis this winter and will go to Philomath as that road is in first-class shape. (Published Aug. 1, 1917, in the Corvallis Gazette-Times).

75 Years Ago


MILITARY: Enlished recently for the Army of the United States at the Portland headquarters of the Oregon recruiting district were J. Lewis Miller and Robert Joseph Ridenour, both of Philomath. The announcement was made by Lieutenant Colonel B.H. Hensley, district recruiting officer. Ridenour is entering the air corps. (Published July 30, 1942, in the Corvallis Gazette-Times).

BUSINESS: Elmer Patterson of Portland purchased the Ralph Walker barber shop fixtures and took possession last Monday. He also purchased a house on South Street formerly occupied by the Sherman Morgan family and will move his family here this weekend. Mr. Patterson is a nephew of Mrs. E.H. Castle and George Cummings of Philomath. (Published July 31, 1942, in the Corvallis Gazette-Times).

FATALITY: Frank Barnes, aged 47, died recently in a Corvallis hospital, a few hours after he fell from a load of hay. Mr. Barnes and his father lived a few miles southeast of Philomath. (Published Aug. 1, 1942, in the Corvallis Gazette-Times).

SEWING: About 16 women were present Wednesday at the parlors to sew for the Red Cross. Hospital garments, bed jackets and dresses are being made at present. Some of the ladies spent the day quilting. They have finished about 15 quilts besides the other sewing. Several are planning to knit sweaters as soon as they can get the yarn. The ladies have four sewing machines and could use more. A covered dish dinner is served at noon. Mrs. Frank Sutliff is in charge of the work. The ladies are looking for larger quarters for storing articles for the emergency room. At present, they are using a room on the upper floor of the city hall. (Published Aug. 3, 1942, in the Corvallis Gazette-Times).

10 Years Ago


FIRE CHIEF: Tom Phelps almost grew up in the Philomath fire station. His dad and both brothers were volunteer firefighters, and his mother was a "fire belle," a member of the women's support group. The family and many friends all had longtime links to the department.

"When I was a kid, Bob Morgan was the fire chief, just a great guy, and the station was always open," Phelps said. Now the station is named after Morgan, and Wednesday was Phelps' first day as chief of Philomath Fire & Rescue. "I love this town and love what I do for a living. To be able to put the two together is pretty cool."

Dale Staib, who led the department for 13 years, retired in early July. Phelps beat out seven other applicants, and four other finalists, for the position. (Published Aug. 2, 2007, in the Corvallis Gazette-Times).

Compiled by Brad Fuqua of the Philomath Express.



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