Avery, Idaho Struggles to Keep its Remaining 25 Residents and Its Spot On the Map

Avery, ID

Northwest News Network - Take a drive down any highway in the Northwest, and you'll pass signs for dozens of small towns. There are more than 700 cities under 10,000 people in Washington, Oregon and Idaho. Many of these towns came about because of railroads or timber or mines and now they’re trying to figure out what comes next. Jessica Robinson reports.

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1 comment:

  1. Poor little Avery struggles to exist. I first visited Avery in August 1987 while fly fishing the Joe with sons, Sandy and Tor and a friend, Dave Soars. We had hamburgers in the restaurant/bar on the south side of the bridge opposite the old Milwaukee Road station. The area was bustling with logging activity then; truck after truck of logs headed to St. Maries down river.
    That little restaurant was burned down a year or two later by a disgruntled drunk. The new blacktop road was just under construction on the north side of the St. Joe that summer and lots of rock blasting to excavate roadbed. The paved road up the St Joe allowed big RV's and trailers enter the area increasingly. Most of the inhabitants were either retired, owned weekend cabins, were fishermen or locals from nearby towns. As logging dried up, the younger inhabitants left Avery for jobs
    and education for the kids. Teenagers left Avery for the outside world, jobs, dating and the army. The 'stuckees' like Dan, who owned the only tavern in Avery, struggled to make an existence selling beer and bar food to a mostly empty old wood frame building heated with a woodstove. Avery had lots of 'Peyton Place' affairs going on among the poor bored middle age and older men and women. Men out-numbered women probably 3-4:1. Men with teeth and some money were fair game for sleep overs with the few women there. I remember hearing about several pending divorces, held together by joint ownership of unsalable real estate. I read where Dan's tavern burned down this past summer, July 2013. Avery has lots of 'immaculate conception' fires; one way to leave town for good. Avery is breathing seasonally with fishing, hunting and camping. At 130 years of age, Avery is like an old man or woman, tired of living, all friends are gone and feeling no more joy. r.a.