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tervals, generally two minutes, was determined by theodolite readings at the two shore stations on Cape Hancock and Fort Stevens, used during my survey of May and June, 1881. The methods were in every respect the same as used on that survey, described in my report of July 13, 1881. A comparison of this examination with the survey of 1881 shows that Clatsop Spit has changed but little, if any, in position or extent. The southern side of Sand Island has about the same position, but the northern point has made out considerably further into Baker's Bay. The " cut-off " channel between the old south channel and the north channel has widened and deepened, and shows a least depth at mean low water of 21 feet. The, Middle Sands have made to the northward, throwing the north channel to the north, and Peacock Spit has made to the eastward. The north channel shows a least depth of 19 feet at mean low water. The south channel is about the same as last year, full of lumps,' with 15 to 17 feet of water on them. A thorough examination was made of that part of the Middle Sands between the north and south channels where the survey of last year indicated that there was a disposition for the ebb currents to break through and open a new and straight channel. The cutting out at this locality has continued, and now there is a straight channel over the sands with a least depth of 17 feet. The distance between the 18-foot curves in passing through this channel is one-quarter of a mile, and between the 24-foot curves is 1 1/2 miles. There is one lump with a least depth of 17 feet, one. quarter of a mile to the eastward, and detached from the general 17-foot shoal. The tug was allowed to drift from the deep water off Clatsop Spit buoy when the tide was about half ebb, and the result shows that ebb currents set directly through this channel and with great force. The bottom is hard sand. It was therefore selected as the proper place to scrape, and on the 28th of May three buoys were placed by the Shubrick, the light-house tender, as guides for the scraping. Two of these buoys are on the north side of the channel, 3 3/4 miles magnetic south of Cape Hancock, and one on the south side of the channel selected, the width between them being three-fourths of a mile. The scraper is the one used on the "cut-off" in 1880. It is now ready, a tug engaged, and scraping will be commenced on the first suitable day. In closing this report I desire to call your attention to the injurious effect, in any opinion, of the fishing upon the bar. The fishing season is fixed by law from the 1st of April to the 31st of July. The nets used are about 300 fathoms in length and 30 feet in width. Formerly the fishing was confined to the river proper, but during the past three or four years the fishing has gradually extended further down, until during the past two seasons, as well as this season, many boats have fished out upon the bar itself. On the 24th of May I counted thirty-one boats on the Middle Sands and in the south channel. The surveys of the last three years show that the sands have flattened out, and now cover a much greater area than formerly, have deepened, and that the channels have shoaled until they are almost obliterated. It would certainly seem that this effect is directly clue to these immense nets drifting backwards and forwards on the sands during the season when the currents are the strongest by reason of the high water in the Columbia. I do not think that natural causes, or these combined with artificial means, such as scraping, or the water-jet, of blasting, will ever be able to open out and maintain a good channel over the bar as long as the fishermen are permitted to drag their nets over it and stir up the sand as they now do. Very respectfully, PHILIP M. PRICE, First Lieutenant of Engineers. Capt. CHAS. F. POWELL, Corps of Engineers. COMMENCEMENT AND INCREASE OF BAR NET FISHING. LETTER FROM ASTORIA CHAMBER OF COMMERCE GIVING HISTORY OF BAR FISHING. ASTORIA, OREG., September 6, 1882. SIR : In answer to your inquiry of last month, the Chamber of Commerce directs the following statement : " That prior to 1879 but very little fishing was done below Sand Island ; that during the season of that year several boats fished there, and with such success that in 1880 a cannery at Ilwaco was built and run, employing about thirty boats. One or two stations were also established in Baker's Bay. " There were perhaps fifty boats that year which went onto the bar to fish.

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