Most Recent Posts

Wigwam Memories: Swisshome

"Daddy, Ed, and I spent an hour or two pulling slab wood off the Erskine sawmill conveyor belt leading  to their wigwam burner," writes Joe Moreland in A Place to Rest My Head, his memoir about growing up in the coast range after WWII. Needing to build a chicken coop, they drove to Swisshome one evening to get scrap wood from the sawmill. Joe writes: "... in those days, every mill had a … [Read More...]

Willamette Fish Hatchery: Oakridge

The Willamette Fish Hatchery sits just outside of Oakridge.  I can't tell you how many times I've driven down Highway 58 without noticing the road sign pointing toward the hatchery. Luckily, at some point it captured my attention, and the hatchery ended up on my "things to see" list. When we stopped by the hatchery last fall, I wasn't exactly sure what to expect. I knew there would be ponds … [Read More...]

Lost Towns: Lane County Historical Museum Exhibit

In the days before log trucks, automation, or heli-logging, sawmills were built closer to the woods. Here in south Lane County, they sprang up along the O&SE Rail line (now the Row River Trail) to take advantage of the railroad. In some instances, whole communities would surround the mill, like the sawmill at Prune Hill. When I think of early sawmills, I usually think of teams of guys … [Read More...]

Cabin Fever

Like most people in south Lane County this weekend, we have been lying pretty low. I read a book by fire light yesterday afternoon while our power was out (luckily it came on just in time for dinner). Staying off the roads and enjoying the warmth of the fire was fun for a while, but this afternoon we had to shake off the cabin fever. So, we headed down to the Row River Nature Park with our dogs … [Read More...]

Luper Cemetery: Eugene

Just north of Eugene, surrounded by farmland, is one of the oldest pioneer cemeteries in the southern Willamette Valley, Luper Cemetery. I love wandering through old graveyards, looking at the headstones, and piecing together the family relationships. I wonder about these people's lives and history and I enjoy the markers their families had created for them. In this regard, Luper Cemetery makes … [Read More...]

Bohemia Mountain Trail

  On top of the world.... ....that is what it feels like standing at 5,994' elevation with views from Mt. Hood to Mt. Shasta, in other words, on the top of Bohemia Mountain. You have to work a little to get there, but it is totally worth it. I enjoy the drive up Bohemia Mountain, and every other year or so, we set aside a day and head up there. Luckily, there are several hiking … [Read More...]

Cottage Grove

Prune Hill Historical

Prune Hill is about seven miles east of Saginaw and is the site of the first Booth Kelly Sawmill. I'll be up-front at the start of this post, I'm not a mill historian or knowledgeable about Booth … [Read More...]