Klamath Heritage: Lairds Landing, A Vital Link for a Few Years


Klamath County Museum’s Photo of the Week for Feb. 10, 2019, shows the dock at Laird’s Landing, a point at the south end of Lower Klamath Lake where many passengers and freight shipments transferred between 1905 and 1908.

Before 1905, most passengers and freight went by way of Topsy Grade in the Klamath River Canyon. Laird’s Landing became a transportation lynchpin as the California Northeastern Railroad (and later the Southern Pacific) pushed north from Weed, Calif. People bound for Klamath Falls would take the train out of Weed to the end of the line, then board a stage that would take them to Laird’s.

A steamboat dubbed the Klamath was launched in 1905 to make regular trips between Laird’s and Klamath Falls. The route included a segment on the Klamath River, another through the Klamath Strait, a third across Lower Klamath Lake, and a short stretch along a channel excavated through marsh to reach solid ground at Laird’s. The steamer would sometimes push one or two small barges loaded with freight. The trip took several hours each way.

Once the railroad reached Butte Valley in 1908, it then became more economical to send passengers and freight to Teeter’s Landing on the Klamath River, about 10 miles south of Klamath Falls. Laird’s Landing immediately fell idle. This photo appears to have been taken some years after Laird’s was abandoned.

Click on the link below to see a previously featured photo showing the steamer Klamath at Laird’s, before the dock was built.

Click on this link to see this spot in Google Maps:

Information provided from the Klamath County Museum.