The goal of the Historical Society is to preserve the history of the City of Myrtle Creek and the surrounding communities in the 97457 Zip Code area.

Sunday, April 12, 2015

This Day in History: April 12, 1954

Bill Haley and the Comets record “Rock Around The Clock”

On April 12, 1954— Bill Haley and the Comets recorded “(We’re Gonna) Rock Around The Clock.” If rock and roll was a social and cultural revolution, then “(We’re Gonna) Rock Around The Clock” was its Declaration of Independence. And if Bill Haley was not exactly the revolution’s Thomas Jefferson, it may be fair to call him its John Hancock.

Saturday, March 28, 2015

Covered Wagons of the Oregon Trail

This video was originally made for use in 4th grade classrooms who are studying the Oregon Trail, but contains enough historical trivia to make it interesting to adults too.

Friday, March 6, 2015

Who Do You Think You Are

Who Do You Think You Are?

Don't forget! "Who Do You Think You Are?" (US) debuts this Sunday at 10pm Pacific on TLC, with Julie Chen's visit to China to learn more about her maternal grandfather. See the series schedule (including reruns) here. If you don't have cable or you have to call it a night earlier than that, episodes usually become available on the show's website after airing.

You can see the lineup of this season's celebrity guests here.

Wednesday, March 4, 2015

Printer Blunder = Calendar Sale

We have a batch of 2015 calendars that were printed with page titles missing! What does this mean?  We can't let them go to waste.   Perfectly usable calendar pages with 13 large photos depicting  travel & tourism services during 1940s and 1950s.   These are all new and in good condition except for missing titles.  Nothing wrong with photos, just a title error.   However, as a result, starting today they'll be offered at half price...$7.50 each!  What a deal!

When Pacific Highway (Hwy 99) was constructed, it was the primary route from Canada to Mexico and brought thousands of travelers through Myrtle Creek...all needing gas, food & lodging. Service stations sprung up on nearly every corner along Main St. with tourist cabins north and south of town.  The 2015 calendar recalls this tourism boom and is also dedicated to memory of John Shirtcliff.

To order, Contact Darrell at 541-863-4762 to purchase or write to You may print an order form here.  Don't forget to change price to $7.50.  

Thursday, February 26, 2015

Black History Month

One of our local stories to spotlight for Black History Month is the story of Letitia Carson.   Letitia leaves Kentucky in the 1840s as a free woman, no longer a slave, She is on her way to Missouri where good things happen, including meeting Davey Carson, an Irish immigrant who treats her with kindness. But Letitia and Davey soon discover that freed blacks are not wanted in Missouri and they begin to make plans to start a new life in Oregon. a place where slavery had never been known.  And so they begin a treacherous journey by wagon train.

Years later, following Davey's death, Letitia is forced to sue for settlement of the estate.   She won the lawsuit and, when the Homestead Act was passed in 1862, Letitia was able to purchase nearly 154 acres on South Myrtle Creek.   She received one of the first 71 patents issued in Oregon,  The stream that runs through the land is now called Letitia Creek (aka "Tish" Creek). She is buried near her property now on private land.

A Light in the Wilderness  is a novel by Jane Kirkpatrick about Letitia and 2 other women she meets along the way.  A reader writes: "an informative read, historical fiction based on a true story that will simply touch your heart. This is the story of three strong women whose lives are woven together with unexpected events that changed their lives forever."

Another reader writes: "If you like to learn about history in a way that draws you in and makes you want to learn more this is a book for you."

Tuesday, February 24, 2015

Meeting Reminder


The next meeting of the Myrtle Creek Historical Society is this Friday, Feb 27th at 1:30 PM in the Council Chambers, Myrtle Creek City Hall.

Tuesday, January 27, 2015

Membership Meeting This Week

page from our 2015 calendar

The Annual General Membership Meeting of the Myrtle Creek Historical Society is this Friday, January 30th at 1:30pm in the Council Chambers of Myrtle Creek City Hall.  All members are encouraged to attend to discuss goals for upcoming year.  All those thinking about joining are welcome to attend and ask your questions about Historic Society and our planned projects.  Membership dues are only $10 a year and are due annually in January.

Funds raised by members dues, calendar and book sales are used, among other things, to collect, reproduce and preserve vintage photos such as the one shown above from our 2015 calendar.  This photo of the old Standard Oil Service Station (next to the Myrtle Creek Auto Court) was operated by Ed May during the 50s according to Bill Leming.  Attendant cleaning car window is quite possibly Ed May.  Do you have anything to add to history of this service station or the Auto Court?   Please share your knowledge by emailing us or attending one of our meetings (last Friday each month)....always open to public.

Because December is usually a very busy time for Historical Society members, there is no meeting in December.  At our last meeting in November we discussed the history of the Veterans Memorial in Millsite Park and the Lane open house event in December along with status of calendar sales and other routine business.  Becky Norton, Ruby Stephens Garmon and others spent time cleaning land around Leticia Carson's grave at the Stephens Graveyard on South Myrtle.   Read more about Leticia  at Douglas County Historical Society website.

Agenda for January meeting on Friday includes information about possible grants to restore buildings to original appearance and seminar for applying for grants.  Long list of proposed projects will be prioritized and, hopefully, update of City's Historic Inventory can be finalized.

Note: MCHS monthly newsletter is discontinued unless someone volunteers to help write it.