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Usk

A small community with stores, a post office, and a service station, along the flats west of the river. Some logging was still being done in the vicinity as of 1941, but the merchantable timber was almost exhausted.

The history of the district around Usk is in a measure typical of the county. Isolated from population centers and off most rail lines, this region was not opened to logging operations until about the beginning of the century. Exploitation was rapid, boom times and depressions alternating with the fluctuation in the prices and the demand for lumber.

Rapidly, logging operations ate into the forests, leaving behind large areas of stump lands, which were then offered at about 10 or 12 dollars an acre. Land-hungry men and women, seeing a possibility of realizing the American dream, bought, cleared, and attempted to farm this land, little realizing that it cost from one to three hundred dollars to clear a single acre. Even when cleared, the land was often unproductive, because of its gravel or clay composition.

Many families moved elsewhere; those who remained, disheartened and disillusioned, struggled on, trying to make a living by growing potatoes and forage crops, selling milk and butter, and, if any trees remained, by cutting cord-wood, frequently the farmer’s best crop. Much of the land around Usk is now cleared of farmers.

The town was platted by George H. Jones on June 9, 1903. Usk was a logging center when the post office was established in 1890 Jones, the first postmaster, for the Usk River in Wales.