Maryann Mason

As It Was Contributor

Maryann Mason, who lives in Ashland, has taught history and English in the U.S. Midwest and Northwest, and Bolivia. She has written history spots for local public radio, interviewed mystery writers for RVTV Noir, and edited personal and family histories.  Her poetry has appeared in Sweet Annie & Sweet Pea Review (1999), Rain Magazine (2007), and The Third Reader, an online Journal of Literary Fiction and Poetry. In 2008 she published her first chapbook, Ravelings.  She organized a History Day for Southern Oregon, and as an English/history teacher she assigned the National History Day project to her students every year for many years.

An original member of the Ashland Highland Kilty Band, Gerald Gunter, had some fond memories of the early days.

Samuel Colver Jr. was one of Southern Oregon’s successful pioneers, an Ohio boy who studied law at Plymouth College in Indiana, excelled in debate, especially with his teachers, but left Ohio to become a Texas Ranger, an Indian Scout, and to serve with Sam Houston in the Battle of San Jacinto.

The Klamath Reservation tribes were very proud of their kiuks, known by outsiders as Indian doctors or shamans.  One of the most respected was David Chocktoot, or Big Hearted Indian.

Music and politics seem to go together, but in 1904, a welcoming band received the bad end of the deal.

When the North American fur trade reached its peak in the 1800’s, European and American trappers encountered an abundance of sea otters, especially on the Oregon Coast.  It wouldn’t last long.

In 1907, George Taverner and his wife, Mary Elizabeth, moved to Ashland, Ore., and bought a home designed by Frank Clark, Southern Oregon’s leading architect at the time.

In 1852 Isaac and Elizabeth Hill left Sweetwater, Tenn., for Oregon, with three daughters and three sons, 500 head of cattle and 12 oxen.

Picard, Calif., doesn’t exist today, but in the late 1800’s, it was a small town in California’s Butte Valley south of Klamath Falls. 

Before she died in 1948 in Talent, Ore., Susan Haines Clayton had become one of, and maybe the last, Union Civil War nurses still alive. 

Political conflict is not new in America -- or Jackson County, for that matter.

Northwest forests once attracted government scientists investigating tree-damaging insect infestations.  

When the Rogue River Indian War erupted in 1855, the U.S. military had 350 men assigned to the vast Oregon and Washington territories.  A militia called the Second Regiment Mounted Volunteers formed and played a major role in the war.  Its success depended on the smooth delivery of supplies to the troops.

On April 18, 1906, Grants Pass, Ore., purchased rights of way and rails and unloaded a trainload of equipment for building a railroad to Crescent City.  Plans were shelved the next day by the San Francisco Great Earthquake.

When he decided to travel to Oregon from Ohio in 1845, Alonzo A. Skinner was already a member of the bar, and a prosecuting attorney. He became the first judge in the Pacific Northwest.

James DeMoss and his wife Elizabeth were part of an 1862 wagon train.  They were musicians who traveled the world with their five children, playing 41 different instruments.  Son George played two cornets at the same time and also had the ability to play several different pieces of music at the same time. Son Henry composed the song “Sweet Oregon,” which became the unofficial state song for a number of years.

Beginning in August 1918, the flu spread to all parts of the United States in just six weeks.  By the time the epidemic ended, more than 50,000 of the 20 million people who contracted the disease had died.

Back in the days when a bridegroom was expected to have at least $1,000 in the bank and a job that paid $100 a month, Bill Bowerman was coaching at Franklin High in Portland in l934.  He loved Barbara in Los Angeles, but he was earning only $80 a month and saving for medical school.

Schools have always had a concern about the clothing students wear, some sending boys home for not having a belt on their trousers and reprimanding girls for wearing short skirts.

Her parents paid tuition of $9 a year for Eula Benson Foley, born in Central Point in 1906, to attend the two-room Howard Grade School in Medford.

A Klamath Falls woman became a famous pilot during World War II after pictures of her and other pilots of her gender appeared in glamour magazines and war-time advertisements.

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