Oregon Trails: Pre-Historic Bones

ASHLAND, Ore. — Things in Ashland are a lot quieter now that it’s between Shakespeare seasons, and the community at the base of the Siskiyous is settling back to being a small college town. Down in the railroad district, the Ashland Railway History Museum is working to expand its mission to include other Ashland history, … Continue reading »

Oregon Trails: Fort Lane

FORT LANE, Ore. — More than a dozen professional and amateur archaeologists are digging into the past near Blackwell Hill, seeking to learn more about a small Army post that was established here in the early 1850s. A grassy clearing not far from the site of the former Gold Ray Dam is where Fort Lane … Continue reading »

Oregon Trails: Keeping the Light On

CRESCENT CITY, Calif. — Since 1892, a landmark West Coast lighthouse in our area has been standing guard on a treacherous stretch of coast waterway. The point St. George Reef Lighthouse was built in the 1880s following the worst shipwreck in West Coast history. Today, it’s being preserved by a dedicated group of volunteers. Click … Continue reading »

Oregon Trails: Nuclear Age

NEAR LAKEVIEW, Ore. — For more than 160 years, talk about mining in Southern Oregon is usually about gold, but 60 years ago, prospectors in Lake County hit pay dirt with a mineral of another kind that helped launch the world into the nuclear age. From the time the first atomic bomb announced the beginning … Continue reading »

Oregon Trails: Dealing with Jackrabbits

NEAR BONANZA, Ore. — Anyone who raises a garden or farms knows what a hassle it is when deer and other wild animals eat up the fruits of all your hard work. A hundred years ago, and again during the Depression, it was smaller animals caused problems for the community. The Langell and Poe Valley … Continue reading »

Oregon Trails: D’Autremont Train Robbery

NEAR ASHLAND, Ore. — When you think of desperados and train robberies in the Old West, you probably think of Jesse James or Butch Cassidy and the Sundance kid, but it was another gang that pulled off what was called “The Last Great Train Robbery” in the U.S. October 11th, 1923 was a day when … Continue reading »

Oregon Trails: Potato Festival

NEAR MERRILL, Ore. — October means harvest time in the Klamath Basin, especially potato harvest time. It’s been that way for a hundred years or more, and continues to be one of the main money makers in the region. To celebrate, every year about this time folks kick up their heels at the Annual Klamath … Continue reading »

Oregon Trails: Stearns’ Journey

MEDFORD, Ore. — When Orson Avery Stearns came to Southern Oregon in 1853, it was by wagon train from Illinois, and took half a year. His family settled near Ashland in the Rogue Valley, but he settled in the Klamath Basin and became the area’s first rancher and farmer. In September 1913, he loaded up … Continue reading »

Oregon Trails: Retracing History

MEDFORD, Ore. — It’s been 160 years this year since the first wave of settlers began rolling into Southern Oregon in their covered wagons. Along with those pioneers was a 10-year-old boy from Illinois who went on to become a prominent figure in both the Rogue Valley and Klamath Basin. In this Oregon Trails, we … Continue reading »

Oregon Trails: Earthquake in Klamath

KLAMATH FALLS, Ore. — 20 years ago, the Klamath Basin was turned upside down as a series of earthquakes rattled Southern Oregon. It caught many people by surprise, and led to new procedures for dealing with major disasters in Klamath County. From Redding to Roseburg, Southern Oregon and Northern California residents wondered what was going … Continue reading »

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