Stories from Jefferson County, Oregon’s Past

The history of Jefferson County is a rich and colorful tapestry of stories that residents and visitors have been telling each other since Native people first entered this country, maybe 10,000 years ago. Why do people tell and perpetuate stories, here, or anywhere? First and last, of course, to entertain, but also to commemorate important things that happen; to celebrate notable people and what they did and said; to imaginatively connect with the distinctive landscapes and weather and wildlife of “home” (somebody should compile an anthology of Jefferson County rattlesnake tales!).

To convey a sense of the kinds of stories that long-time County residents have told and still tell one another, and to encourage the collecting of such priceless materials, we offer the following sampler—some of the pieces are transcribed as texts, some are in audio form. For a real treasury of the latter, see the CD collection The Voices of Experience, from interviews with County old-timers conducted by Harold Moore and his Middle School students in the 1970’s—available at the Museum.

 

Stories (Text)

Stories (Audio – MP3)

The audio excerpts presented here are from “The Voices of Experience,” a series of interviews by the Jefferson County Historical Society and edited by Harold Moore.
(A pop-up window opens to play audio. You may be required to enable pop-ups)