History

Helfrich brothersPosted: 7:30 p.m., Wednesday, April 2

All tickets for this year's McKenzie Memories have been sold - none will be available at the door.

Below is a story about the event.

EUGENE: A paddle down a stream full of memories is planned for the night of April 4th. The third annual McKenzie Memories history event will feature storytelling, music, rare historic films and photographs of the McKenzie River.

Oregon BootBy Finn J.D. John

In 1866, Oregon State Penitentiary Warden J.C. Gardner had a problem. The state prison had just moved to its present home, in Salem. Its old home had been in Portland, but the city didn’t really want it there — especially after an incident in the early 1860s when the state tried to save some money by subcontracting the facility out to a private operator. This solved the overcrowding problem in fine style: every single prisoner escaped.

NewsArk logo

 

The NewsArk is an ongoing effort to archive McKenzie River history.

Parts of it will include digitized back issues of McKenzie River Reflections, newspaper, going back to the start of publication in 1978.

 

 

 

Canines clobber Chamber kiosk
December 1, 2000 edition of McKenzie River Reflections

 

Klamath FallsBy Finn J.D. John
At around 2 p.m. on a sunny Monday afternoon in August 1911, Klamath Falls resident John Hunsaker was driving past the Oak Avenue Canal when he saw something in it — something that looked like a man.

 

Hank Vaughn at 35By Finn J.D. John

By the mid-1880s, the wild, unpredictable and dangerous Oregon almost-outlaw Hank Vaughan had started showing distinct signs of settling down. He had married a part-Umatilla woman named Martha Robie in 1883; Martha, a widow, had inherited a comfortable sum from her late husband, and also was entitled to claim 640 acres of reservation land.
Hank, as Martha’s husband, now turned his considerable managerial talents away from livestock rustling and toward wheat-farm management.

Hank VaughnBy Finn J.D. John

Crime, they say, does not pay.
Yet it’s pretty easy to look back through history and find examples of a certain kind of criminal for whom it did, handsomely, and for decades. With charisma, moxie and a seemingly endless supply of good luck, these characters sometimes even manage to cheat karma and die a natural death.

Book coverWant to win a McKenzie history book?

Go to: http://alturl.com/xryri & fill out a short form. Then take a screen shot of your completed survey & send it to: rivref@aol.com. You'll be entered into a raffle to win a copy of our upcoming book - “Weir are we? Hatchery fish of the McKenzie.”  Portions of the book will contain first-person interviews from articles published & preserved in our archives. The deadline is 2/22/14.

 

 

Opium denBy Finn J.D. John

Most people think of opium today with a certain kind of mild romantic  nostalgia. We know it was bad, and people got hurt, but opium and the  demi-monde that developed around it had a certain dark allure with its  fragrant, smoky fumes and its elegant, exotic smoking rituals.

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McKenzie River Reflections is the weekly newspaper serving Oregon's McKenzie River Valley. Available by mail for $23/yr in Lane County, $29/yr outside Lane. Digital subscriptions are $23/yr. Subscribe at: http://mckenzieriverreflectionsnewspaper.com/catalog/subscriptions-0. Purchase copies online at: http://mckenzieriverreflectionsnewspaper.com/catalog/back-issues-0. Read about area communities including Cedar Flat, Walterville, Camp Creek, Leaburg, Vida, Nimrod, Finn Rock, Blue River, Rainbow and McKenzie Bridge.