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County joins in historic celebration

Jackson County's museums and historical societies are putting all their eggs in one basket to help celebrate Oregon's 150th birthday.

The eggs in this case are donated items related to Oregon history, which will be placed in a huge basket to be raffled off for a month beginning Feb. 14, the anniversary of Oregon's birth in 1859. The items are worth about $200.

The way it works, explains Charleen Brown of the Rogue Valley Genealogical Society in Phoenix, is that free raffle tickets will be given out at the more than a dozen museum or society offices state birthday celebrants visit during that period. The genealogical society is one of the participants.

"We want to get the word out that we are surviving," she said of societies whose county funding was cut two years ago. "This is also a way to get people to take an interest in our history and realize the importance of keeping it alive."

In the raffle, participants will receive a free ticket at each site they visit. The more sites they visit, the more tickets they will receive and the greater the chance of winning the basket, she explained.

Items include videos and DVDs on local history, books, T-shirts, hats, mugs, a handmade birdhouse, a set of handmade coasters, an original painting on a bridge board from the McKee covered bridge, stone-ground flour mixes from Butte Creek Mill, a year subscription to Farming magazine, a year membership to the genealogical society, a gold panning kit, a jar of homemade blackberry jam and more.

The drawing will be held March 12 at the Jackson County Heritage Association meeting at the genealogical society building at 95 Houston Road in Phoenix.

"You don't even have to be present to win," she said.

The following museums and organizations, which are participating in the raffle, will be open and free on Feb. 14:

  • Southern Oregon Historical Society's Jacksonville and Children's Museums and Beekman House in Jacksonville; and Hanley Farm, 1053 Hanley Road, Central Point, 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. Draft horse teams will be plowing and planting at Hanley Farm.
  • Rogue Valley Genealogical Society, open 10 a.m. to 3 p.m., 95 Houston Road, Phoenix; free personal research and use of online subscription sites, refreshments.
  • Woodville Museum, corner of First and Oak streets in Rogue River, open regular hours.
  • McKee covered bridge, Upper Applegate Road, open in the afternoon.
  • Eagle Point Museum, opens at noon, 202 N. Royal Ave., Eagle Point; crafters, Old Time Fiddlers, refreshments.
  • Big Butte Historical Society, 432 Pine St., Butte Falls, open house in the Bill Edmondson Memorial Museum and the Medco Caboose.
  • Upper Rogue Historical Society and Museum, 144 Old Highway 62, Trail, 10 a.m. to 3 p.m., refreshments and Old-time Post Office cancellation of letters
  • Talent Historical Society, 1 p.m. to 5 p.m., 105 N. Market St., Talent; refreshments.
  • Lake Creek Historical Society, noon to 5:30 p.m., 1739 S. Fork Little Butte Creek Road, Lake Creek; traditional farming activities, traditional food preparation, pioneer herbal remedies, refreshments.
  • Southern Oregon Chapter National Railroad Historical Society, Medford Railroad Park, regular hours.
  • Gold Hill Historical Society, noon to 2 p.m., 504 First Ave., Gold Hill, refreshments and door prizes.
  • Phoenix Historical Society, 10 a.m. to 2 p.m., 607 N. Church St., Phoenix; refreshments.