Tuesday, October 16, 2012

Southern Oregon History

Thanks for checking out Southern Oregon Stories!

You can learn more about the Southern Oregon Historical Society (and Southern Oregon history!) throughout the internet:
 - Official website for SOHS
 - SOHS's Facebook page
 - Hanley Farm Facebook page
 - Southern Oregon History, Revised

Wednesday, October 19, 2011

Object of the Week: Telephone

Imagine living in the 1930s and using this telephone for all your communication needs! By the mid-1910s, most of the Rogue Valley had both telephone service and electricity. This desk phone, made of bakelite, featured a rotary dial and a large cloth-covered cord that plugged into the outlet. Jackson County residents directed their long distance calls through an operator until the early 1960s. 

If you're interested, the oldest working telephone booth in Oregon, made of wood with a tin ceiling, is located in downtown Ashland in the Columbia Hotel!

Telephone, 1927-1939
Bakelite, cloth, metal

Thursday, October 6, 2011

ANNOUNCING: Mysteries in Our Backyard!

Are you interested in local history? Are there “mysteries” about your neighborhood, home, family, etc., that you’ve always been curious about? Mysteries in Our Backyard is a new research project that encourages YOU to research these local mysteries! 

From October through December 2011, local history mysteries will be collected. Do you have a local history mystery question to share? Visit our website to submit your local history mystery and learn more about the project.

In January 2012, you will be able to claim a mystery to solve!  For a $10 fee, you will receive online access to a research toolbox including research guides, maps, and much more to help you along the way. Your $10 fee also includes unlimited access to the SOHS and RVGS research libraries to help you in your research! 

The Mysteries in Our Backyard website will be an interactive presence throughout your research. Upload the answers to the website and share with other researchers! On May 19, 2012, there will be a final event to share all the local history mystery solutions, and to share your research experiences. 

Mysteries in Our Backyard is a collaborative project of: the Southern Oregon Historical Society (SOHS) and the Rogue Valley Genealogical Society (RVGS), with participation by members of the Jackson County Heritage Association (JCHA), the Jackson County Library System (JCLS), Southern Oregon University (SOU), and individual cemetery groups and organizations in Jackson County.




Wednesday, October 5, 2011

Object of the Week: Snowshoes

Local folklore speculates that Ranger M. L. Edwards was the first documented person to spend the winter at Crater Lake National Park. "Eleven Feet of Snow at Crater," published in the Mail Tribune on February 5, 1916, described how Edwards spent a "lonesome" winter there, leaving only a handful of times. He may have used these snowshoes for his few trips out to Fort Klamath. Can you imagine a winter with only snowshoes for transportation?!

Snowshoes, 1915-1920
Wood, leather, metal

Monday, October 3, 2011

Don't Miss Scarecrow Fest on Saturday, October 15!

Schedule of Events:
  • Live Music: Christina Duane and the Sons of the Oregon Trail, 2pm - 3:30pm
  • Hanley House Tours, 11am - 4pm
  • Wagon hayrides, 11am - 4pm
  • Scarecrow making, 11am - 2pm ($10 per scarecrow kit, finish by 2:30 to enter the contest)
  • Scarecrow contest! You help judge the entries. Winners will be announced and given ribbons after 3:30.

Entrance fees: $5.00 per adult, $3.00 per child, free for SOHS members and children under 4.
NOTE: You may make a scarecrow in advance and enter it. Visit our website for more information.

Wednesday, September 28, 2011

Object of the Week: Bicycles in Medford, OR

Columbia Model 45
Pope Manufacturing Company

The "Golden Age" of bicycling in the 1890s saw a sudden and unprecedented rise in bicycling across the United States. Urban streets and country lanes alike were filled with men and women riding these new contraptions for leisure, health, and transportation. This Columbia Model 45 safety bicycle was owned by Medford photographer R. V. Beall Jr. Manufactured by the Pope Manufacturing Company in Hartford, CT in 1898, this bicycle was designed for a man, show by its high crossbar, while a ladies bicycle would feature a dropped frame to allow her to wear long skirts while riding.

Columbia Model 41, Women's Bicycle
Safety Bicycle, 1898
Metal, wood, leather, rubber

Thursday, September 22, 2011

Object of the Week: The Peace Flask

This Batty Peace Flask was one of the most popular of the bag-shaped, rifle-size powder flasks of the mid-1800s. It's referred to as a "Peace Flask" because the embossed image, while worn here, features a pair of clasped hands surrounded by stars. The Peace Flask design was first manufactured in 1844 and reproduced in 1847 and 1857, and many American troops carried them in the Mexican-American War and the Civil War. This particular flask was found in a cabin on the James Martin and Ed Tucker farm, near Brownsboro in the Lake Creek area, and a U.S. soldier may have used it in the Rogue River area.

Powder flask
Donated by Dr. Bert R. Elliot