Maureen Flanagan Battistella

As It Was Contributor

Maureen is on the Sociology/Anthropology faculty at Southern Oregon University.  Her research interests are the Southern Oregon wine industry, heritage agriculture, and the “culture of kitchens.”  She has a Rutgers University master’s in library and information science, which prepared her for a career in technology services, medical education and a lifetime of learning, thinking, and writing. She lives in Ashland.

Southern Oregon Digital Archive

The voice may sound familiar: Diana Coogle delivered audio essays on JPR News for years. 

Now she's back to talk about her own life story, as it involves a commune, Houkola, in the Colestin Valley by the state line. 

That story is the focus of this month's Stories of Southern Oregon, compiled and curated by Maureen Flanagan Battistella. 

The arboretum of 40 trees established at the Southern Oregon Experiment Station in 1961 was a joint project of the Siskiyou District of the Oregon Federation of Garden Clubs, Jackson and Josephine County Extension Services and the Southern Oregon Agricultural Experiment Station.  Extension Agent John W. McLoughlin managed the project.

Maybe a third of a million people came to California for the gold rush of 1849, and easily thousands more have come to the West since.  Many of them had little to show for their efforts. 

But not Glenn Wadstein.  He mined Jackson County's Sterling Creek for gold for a decade and a half at the end of the last century, and he claims to have pulled POUNDS of gold out of the stream. 

What did he do with his gains, and what kind of shape did he leave the creek in?  These and more questions are answered in Wadstein's video story at the Southern Oregon Digital Archives at Southern Oregon University. 

This is the latest chapter in Stories of Southern Oregon. 

By 1910, Ashland, Ore., was primed for growth, with a population topping 5,000, a clean water supply, sewage systems and a hospital.  Landed families were turning property over to developers for quick sales.

Michael Richardson/Wikimedia

Chris Bratt is all about the trees.  He has plenty of experience using wood products from his days as a carpenter and contractor. 

And he's perfectly happy to leave the trees alone to grow, in his role as an environmental activist and forest protector. 

Chris Bratt's story is the latest to be archived in the Stories of Southern Oregon collection at the Southern Oregon Digital Archives at Southern Oregon University's Hannon Library. 

Chris visits the studio to talk about his rich and varied life in the Applegate Valley. 

Elevators were a big deal in large cities after the turn of the century, but Southern Oregon buildings tended to sprawl rather than stack.