Christopher Shockey

As It Was Contributor

Christopher Shockey lives on a 40-acre hillside homestead in the Applegate Valley of Southern Oregon, where before on-line streaming, JPR Classics and News was the only radio station he and his family could capture. It played from atop the refrigerator all day, and he heard Carol Barrett and Hank Henry’s As It Was each morning. Shockey has been a long-time JPR contributor and enjoys supporting the Southern Oregon Historical Society and JPR by digging up regional stories. His days are a chaotic combination of parenting,  day job, and dealing with whatever the climate and a homestead in the forest flings his way. Every day is different. Christopher can be found with his wife Kirsten, watering, mucking stalls, preserving harvests, making cheese, cleaning, dancing on the porch, planting trees, chopping firewood, hiking, reading, or writing.  At the end of the day they go to bed exhausted and knowing life is good.


9:58 am
Mon April 28, 2014

Iowa Slough Once Known as Dead Man's Slough

Episode 2395

 Iowa Slough is about 15 minutes by boat from the mouth of the Coquille River in Oregon and about half way between the towns of Coquille and Bandon.  Years ago it was called Dead Man’s Slough, taking its name from two miners who were killed by Indians.

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10:17 am
Tue March 25, 2014

Radical Speaker Attracts Northern California Workers and Socialists

Episode 2371
 One of his generation’s most radical union leaders, Utah-born William “Big Bill” Hayward filled the halls with Socialists and workers for a series of speeches in March 1909 in the towns of Eureka, Fortuna and Arcata, Calif.  

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1:56 pm
Thu February 27, 2014

Pinehurst School History Dates Back to 1908

Episode 2353
 In 1908, neighbors eager to educate their children in the Green Springs area about 20 miles east of Ashland Ore., worked together to build a one-room schoolhouse along the Emigrant Trail. A path led to a “one-holer” out back.  The school, named after nearby Beaver Creek, had two-seater desks, a wood stove, a water bucket and dipper, and a blackboard.  Soon, it was remodeled to state standards, including an upgraded wood stove.
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2:39 pm
Tue February 11, 2014

Oregon Moonshiner Seeks Welcome in China

Episode 2341
 In his report in 1876, the U.S. Internal Revenue Commissioner described moonshiners as “unlettered men of desperate character, armed and ready to resist the officers of the law.”  For the neighbors of Harry Scott of Derby, Ore., the description fit to a T.  
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2:40 pm
Tue February 4, 2014

Derby Store Offers Everything from Groceries to Clothing

Episode 2336

Traveling between the Oregon towns of Eagle Point and Butte Falls today is a scenic 30-minute drive along Butte Falls Highway. A century ago the route was a single-wagon trail, choked with dust in the summers and wheel-trapping mud in the winters. The only reprieve was the small town of Derby, which was centered about half way between Eagle Point and Butte Falls and about eight miles north of the junction at Hwy 62.  

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2:48 pm
Fri January 24, 2014

Lumber Baron Starts Anew in Green Springs East of Ashland, Ore.

Episode 2329

Starting out at age 17 as a horse trader, James Everett Henry spent a lifetime building a lumber empire, buying forests in his native New Hampshire, building lumber and paper mills and power stations to run them and railroads to ship their products.  In his late 70s he retired around 1908 and handed his business empire to his three sons. They sold the business for millions in 1917, and one of them, John H. Henry,  retired to Pasadena, Calif., with his wife, daughter and son, John B. Henry.

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11:09 am
Fri December 13, 2013

Early Christmas Shopping Has Its Advocates

Episode 2299

Early Christmas advertising in Southern Oregon and Northern California is nothing new; it has been around since the late 1800s when some ads popped up even before Halloween. It got a boost in 1903 when the socialist co-founder of the NAACP, Florence Kelley, wrote a widely published essay advocating early shopping in support of her crusade for child labor laws and an eight-hour workday.

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9:45 am
Tue December 3, 2013

Car Thieves Caught in Ashland Bottleneck

Episode 2291
 He was visiting relatives in Medford when G. H. Smith heard a familiar sound outside their home.  It was his brand new 1919 Dodge Roadster starting up and driving away.
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10:43 am
Thu November 28, 2013

Robbery in Hilt, Calif., Nets $150 and $1,500 Diamond Ring

Episode 2288
Victor Eugene “Slim” Warrens knew how to run a profitable saloon and he was fond of diamonds.  He didn’t take kindly to being robbed.
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9:12 am
Mon November 11, 2013

War's End Brings Bad News for Ashland Family

Episode 2275
The front page of the Ashland Tidings on Tuesday, Nov. 12, 1918, caught up with the news that the small Oregon town had longed for.  The headline read: “The War is Over – Germany Accepts Allies Peace Terms at 12 O’clock Sunday Night.”
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