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Battle Rock Park - Port Orford

Named after the historic Battle Rock, the site of an historic battle between the first landing party of white settlers (Captain Tichenor's crew of nine men) and a local Qua-to-mah band of Athapascan speaking natives. Capt Tichenor left 9 men on the beach saying he would return in 2 weeks with men and supplies. The men armed with 3 muskets, 2 rifles, 1 pistol, several swords and a ships cannon, made a defensive camp on a seastack situated on the northern end of the beach.

The natives ordered the settlers off what they considered their beach. When they didn't, they were attacked by over 100 warriors. In the ensuing skirmishes 23 Indians were killed and 2 settlers seriously wounded. The chief then negotiated a truce to remove his dead. The settlers told the chief that they were to be removed by ship in 14 days.

For 14 days the settlers never saw another Indian. But on the 15th morning, they were attacked by a group of over 300 men. Their chief was killed at the beginning of the assault. The warriors immediately withdrew with their dead chief and set up camp about 300' away from the Rock. The settlers fled north during the night. They all eventually survived with help from friendly Indians that they encountered along the way.

The event of June 9, 1851 was the beginning of the settling of Port Orford. Tichenor went on to operate the first sawmill on the south coast, and built the ship Alaska in 1857.

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