Luana (Loffer) Corbin

As It Was Contributor

Luana (Loffer) Corbin was born and raised in Jackson County in the Phoenix area.  Her parents owned a farm and fruit orchard, and she spent her childhood in the country.  After graduating from St. Mary’s High School in Medford, Corbin enrolled at Southern Oregon College, majoring in Elementary Education.  The summer after graduation she was hired to teach at Ruch Elementary, where she taught for 32 years.  She considered teaching at a small country school as a wonderful experience that helped her appreciate regional history.  After retiring, Corbin worked for Lifetouch School Photography and then returned to Ruch as an aide helping with reading instruction and at the library.  More recently, she has volunteered at South Medford High.

Children and learning are her passions.  She lives with her husband, Richard, and a black lab, Kelly, on a small farm outside Phoenix.

During the 1970s and early 1980s, many people throughout the world sought ultralight aircraft as an affordable way to fly.  Lightweight and slow-flying, they were subject to fewer regulations than other airplanes.

In 1916, more than 200 Rogue Valley, Ore., residents motored 30 miles on Hwy 62 from Medford to Trail for the grand opening of the Rogue Elk Hotel.

The Benevolent Order of Elks Lodge facing the corner of Central Avenue and Fifth Street in downtown Medford, Ore., is a good example of Beaux Arts architecture.

Grants Pass became a major recreation getaway in the early 20th century thanks to the coming of the railroad, the opening of the Oregon Caves Highway, and the enthusiasm of citizens, primarily the town’s Commercial Club.  The city responded by giving priority to making visitors and residents as comfortable as possible.

Celebrating a birthday in the 1960s and 70s in Southern Oregon was always special if you got a pink champagne birthday cake from the Rogue Bakery in Phoenix, Ore.  The shop along South Pacific Highway was owned by Dick and Lillian Hendrix, who had operated bakeries from Alaska to Wyoming.

The success of the Bly, Ore., rodeo encouraged neighboring Lakeview, some 46 miles east of Bly on State Rte. 140, to create its own rodeo.

Miners and farmers established a school for their children in the 1870s at the juncture of the east and west forks of Forest Creek above Jacksonville.

In 1952, Jacksonville, Ore., celebrated a Gold Rush Jubilee to commemorate the 100th anniversary of the discovery of gold in the town.

Medford, Ore., held its own Grand Prix race on July 3, 1911, just two months after the first-ever Indianapolis 500 race.

Medford, Ore., weekenders regarded Butte Falls as a popular camping spot in the early 1900s.

Eagle Point, Ore., laid claim in the early 1900’s to producing Bosc pears fit for a king.

One evening in the late 1800’s an unannounced visitor came to a small house built by Albert and Sarah Howlett on Little Butte Creek in Eagle Point, Ore.  When the stranger asked if he could stay the night, they invited him in.

Many early-day logging companies around the world used a curious looking piece of equipment called a “Walking Dudley,” described as a power car on rails.

Snow removal at Crater Lake in the 1930’s created pals of Harry “Happy” Fuller and a snowplow machine he named Betsy.

Gold and Timber have played an important role about 25 miles northwest of Grants Pass and three miles downstream from Galice. The location was once the small logging and sawmill camp of Yankville.

During the 1940’s and 50’s Mario Lanza became the most famous operatic tenor of the time.  Lanza admired tenor Enrico Caruso, and in 1951, he played the role of Caruso in the movie titled “The Great Caruso.”

One afternoon in 1905, renowned opera singer Ed Andrews, musical director Charles Hazelrigg and members of his Andrews Opera troupe arrived without fanfare at the Medford, Ore., train station. 
Having traveled by train through the Rogue Valley frequently, they had decided to close their opera company and move to Medford.

When Germany threatened to invade England in the summer of 1940, the British government created the Children’s Overseas Reception Board that sent children to safety in Canada, New Zealand, Australia, South Africa, and the United States.

A photograph in the Medford Mail Tribune of March 16, 1960, shows building contractor Meyers Jones of the Siskiyou Development Co. handing the keys to Merle Van Hoosen, manager of a new roller skating rink.

Before the advent of “talkies” in 1927, silent films entertained audiences with dialogue created by gestures, mime or title cards. At the height of the silent movie era, films without sound were shipped to theaters.

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