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Ashland, Oregon Text-Only Version

Please note that this text-only version, provided for ease of printing and reading, includes approximately 50 pages and may take up to 15 minutes to print. By clicking on one of these links below, you may go directly to a particular text-only section:

Welcome Letter
Applegate Trail Settlement Essay
Ashland's Golden Spike Essay
All the World's a Stage Essay
List of Sites
Maps (printer friendly maps, you will need to print map pages separately)
Begin the Tour
Learn More



The National Park Service's National Register of Historic Places, the Historic Commission of the City of Ashland, the Oregon State Historic Preservation Office, the National Conference of State Historic Preservation Officers (NCSHPO), and the National Alliance of Preservation Commissions (NAPC) proudly invite you to explore Ashland, Oregon: From Stage Coach to Center Stage. Located in the scenic Rogue River Valley, Ashland lies just 14 miles north of the California border at the foot of Mt. Ashland. This latest National Register of Historic Places Travel itinerary illustrates the development of the city from a small transportation and farming center founded in 1852 into a community with a strong cultural identity. Ashland has 48 individual places listed in the National Register of Historic Places. This itinerary highlights 32 of those historic places which depict the charm and historical significance of the community and provide insights into how Ashland's past has contributed to its dynamic, thriving existence today.

First settled in 1852 as a milling center, Ashland was incorporated in 1874. The town became known for education and culture; Skidmore Academy, founded in 1872, grew to become Southern Oregon University. The railroad arrived in 1884; by 1891 the town had a library, City Band, and Opera House. When Ashland joined the Chautauqua circuit in 1893, its reputation as a resort and educational center grew. Once a bustling railroad hub, the town declined when the main line was diverted through Klamath Falls in 1927. Ashland revitalized and became a magnet for cultural tourism in 1935 with the establishment of the Oregon Shakespeare Festival, which today is the largest regional repertory theater in the United States, offering 11 classical and contemporary plays in three theaters from February through October. Southern Oregon University, part of the state's regional comprehensive higher education system, provides library, computing, and community outreach resources to serve the region and complements the many artistic, musical, and theatrical opportunities available here.

The City has provided support for historic preservation efforts through its sponsorship of the Historic Commission and through recognition of individual citizens' efforts to keep its history alive. For example, Ashland for many years has had four locally-designated historic districts. In large part as a result of city support, two of these--the Ashland Railroad Addition District and the Downtown District--have now been placed in the National Register, while the others are in the process of nomination and consideration. Although Ashland was a hub city before the railroad arrived, the importance of rail transportation on its life and commerce are apparent in a tour of the Railroad Addition Historic District. The imposing multi-storied railroad depot was torn down years ago, but the South Wing of the Ashland Depot Hotel has been preserved as a reminder of those glory days. Also reflecting the historic district's diverse population in those early days is the Nihls Ahlstrom House, the simple home of a railroad worker and the John McCall House, the imposing home of a prominent resident. Among public buildings are the Peerless Rooms Building (where both passengers and local boarders once resided), and Trinity Episcopal Church (the only church in Ashland still in use by its original denomination). Unlike many western small towns, Ashland still has a vibrant downtown, as a visit to the historic Downtown District makes clear. Walking from an early fraternal lodge, the International Order of Oddfellows (IOOF) Building, on the Plaza, to the recently restored Mark Antony Motor Hotel (Ashland Springs Hotel) is a stroll through both time and styles of living and of architecture.

Ashland, Oregon: From Stage Coach to Center Stage offers several ways to discover the historic properties that played important roles in the City's past. Each highlighted property features a brief description of the place's significance, color, and where available, historic photographs, and public accessibility information. At the bottom of each page the visitor will find a navigation bar containing links to three essays that explain more about early days of the Applegate Trail Settlement, Ashland's Golden Spike, and All the World's a Stage. These essays provide historic background, or "contexts," for many of the places included in the itinerary. The itinerary can be viewed online, or printed out if you plan to visit Ashland, Oregon, in person.

Created through a partnership between the National Park Service's National Register of Historic Places, the Historic Commission of the City of Ashland, the Oregon State Historic Preservation Office, NCSHPO and NAPC, Ashland, Oregon: From Stage Coach to Center Stage is the latest example of a new and exciting cooperative project. As part of the Department of the Interior's strategy to revitalize communities by promoting public awareness of history and encouraging tourists to visit historic places throughout the nation, the National Register of Historic Places is cooperating with communities, regions and Heritage Areas throughout the United States to create online travel itineraries. Using places listed in the National Register of Historic Places, the itineraries help potential visitors plan their next trip by highlighting the amazing diversity of the country's historic places and supplying accessibility information for each featured site. In the Learn More section, the itineraries link to regional and local web sites that provide visitors with further information regarding cultural events, special activities, lodging and dining possibilities as well as histories of the region, to help you explore further. Visitors may be intersted in Historic Hotels of America, a program of the National Trust for Historic Preservation, located in Oregon, including the Ashland Springs Hotel.

Ashland is the 10th of more than 30 organizations working directly with the National Register of Historic Places to create travel itineraries. Additional itineraries will debut online in the future. The National Register of Historic Places and the Historic Commission of the City of Ashland hope you enjoy this virtual travel itinerary of the city's historic places. If you have comments or questions please just click on the provided e-mail address, "comments or questions" located at the bottom of each page.


Welcome Letter

Dear Visitor,

Welcome. As mayor of Ashland, Oregon, it is a pleasure to invite you to explore our town and its rich history. After your virtual tour, we would be delighted if you find time one day to visit us in person as well. Ashland is nestled near the head of the scenic Rogue River Valley in an exquisite part of Oregon known colloquially as the "State of Jefferson," a non-existent state but a wonderful part of Oregon and the northwest.

Known for its scenery and mild climate, with the Cascade mountain range joining the Siskiyou mountains just a few miles south of town, Ashland is also a historically and culturally rich community. We are home to the renowned Oregon Shakespeare Festival, a world-class repertory company, which performs eleven plays per year over a nine-month season. The festival has three theaters in town including a unique open-air Elizabethan replica and a soon-to-be-completed state-of-the-art smaller theater. Southern Oregon University, a 5000-student public university, has made its home here for more than 75 years. Ashland and the surrounding Rogue Valley are host to many other fine performing musical and arts groups and galleries.

Historically and today, Ashland is one of America's finest small towns. Originally the site of a Takilma Indian village built on Ashland creek, the town of Ashland was founded in 1852 with a mill established on the creek and a downtown "plaza" developing nearby. A north-south railroad link followed soon afterward, and Ashland thrived as a key terminus of a stage route over the rugged Siskiyou Pass to California. Today, the downtown plaza remains the hub of Ashland, which has retained its charm and centrality, along with its many historic buildings.

As Ashland's mayor, one of the things in which I take particular pride is our city's commitment to its historic heritage. We invite you to enjoy the "virtual" tour laid out here for you, and then to come see us in person one day. Our city web site,, can help you make plans for that.

With all best wishes,

John Morrison, Mayor
Ashland, Oregon

Applegate Trail Settlement

The original Oregon Trail to the Willamette Valley was extremely hazardous and in 1846 Jesse Applegate led a small group of trailblazers in search of a southern route that did not require facing the challenge of the mighty Columbia River where so many pioneers had perished. The Applegate Trail, also known as South Emigrant Road, they opened up was indeed a safer way that traversed the Rogue River Valley. Applegate and his companions did not linger, however, but returned to the Willamette Valley settlements they already knew. This situation would soon change as a result of federal legislation and gold fever.

The Donation Land Law, passed in 1850, provided public land to settlers in the Oregon Territory. It allowed a single male settler to claim 320 acres and a married couple 640 acres (half to be held by the wife). A Donation Land Claim could be filed by any citizen of the United States who had declared intentions before December 1, 1850 and who had resided on and cultivated the land for four consecutive years. Long before the railroad brought prosperity to Ashland, encouraged by this federal legislation, the earliest European settlers in the Ashland area came seeking agricultural land. Although most of their original homes are gone now, the John P. Walker House remains as a reminder of those days. The 1849 California Gold Rush boom moved north and when gold was discovered in Jackson County, miners came, along with the businesses to support them.

At first Ashland, like so many western towns, was an all-male enclave. Robert Hargadine and Abel Helman filed the first Donation Land Claims. Helman had mined in California with Eber Emery; together they built the first sawmill in the valley, powered by water from Ashland Creek. After becoming satisfied with the prospects they found here, men with families in the east returned to bring them to Ashland. In April 1853, Isaac Hill brought his family overland by wagon. His wife Elizabeth was the first white woman to arrive--soon to be joined by others in a familiar pattern of western settlement.

Because of Ashland's proximity to water power beside Ashland Creek, among the town's first enterprises was milling. The lumber, woolen, and flour mills built near today's Plaza accounted for the town's being designated as "Ashland Mills" when the first post office was established in 1855. The Plaza also was conveniently close to the Stage Road (as today's Main Street was then called). This meant that supply wagons had easy access to the north-south route also used by passenger stage coaches.

Soon the hills above Ashland became dotted with orchards as nurserymen came to explore the possibility of growing different kinds of fruit in this climate. Perhaps the experience of Orlando Coolidge best exemplifies this endeavor. In 1866 Coolidge, who had established the first plant nursery in Jackson County in 1862, planted acres of almonds in the hills above town. Although pears eventually became the fruit of choice in this climate, the Orlando Coolidge House (one of the mansions at the north end of historic Ashland known locally as "The Three Sisters") stands as a monument to his success. The other two adjoining residences, The Isaac Woolen House and The W. H. Atkinson House, were homes of families active in the years during which Ashland changed from a small farming supply center to a functioning business and cultural community, supporting churches, a bank, and a newspaper.

Early settlers in the west depended upon fraternal orders to provide social activity and a sense of community; they acted as burial societies as well (part of Mountain View Cemetery was developed by the Independent Order of Oddfellows). In Ashland one of the outstanding examples of the buildings constructed by fraternal groups to house their activities is the hall of the Independent Order of Oddfellows (IOOF Building), begun in 1879.

Although most of the homes they constructed are no longer standing, the early pioneers provided for the burial of their dead and Ashland has three historical cemeteries. The oldest, Ashland Cemetery, has burials dating from 1860, while many prominent early settlers also rest in Hargadine Cemetery.

There were 854 people living in Ashland on September 28, 1880 when stage coaches carrying President and Mrs. Rutherford B. Hayes, General William Tecumseh Sherman, and party made a brief stop in Ashland. The crowd of 2000 listened to speeches and then watched four small girls present a tray of Ashland-grown peaches, pears, apples, plums, grapes, blackberries, almonds, and figs. Orlando Coolidge had planted well.


Ashland's Golden Spike

While Ashland's 20th-century revival can be attributed to the cultural renaissance brought by the highways that contributed to the death of the railroad, the importance of the railroad in Ashland's history cannot be overemphasized. Ashland's late 19th-century prosperity depended upon its rail connections. At first the town was connected to Portland in 1884, but travel to the south over the precipitous Siskiyou Pass still had to be done by stage coach. Then came the driving of the Golden Spike on December 17, 1887 in Ashland. This event was important to the entire nation, as it completed the railroad circle around the United States. The railroad was responsible for the success of the local orchard and livestock industries, as well as milling and manufacturing. Its prosperity was reflected in the number of stylish and opulent homes being built by those associated with agricultural, industrial, financial, and civic affairs such as the John McCall House, the Fordyce-Roper House, the John and Charlotte Pelton House and the G. M. and Kate Grainger House.

Ashland's early settlement was centered around Ashland Creek because of its water power, but the railroad rapidly became a secondary hub of the town. The station had a roundhouse, a freight house, loading platforms and a depot. The trains' arrival attracted wagons racing down the streets to meet the train and large crowds of locals coming to see the passengers get off and purchase items from local vendors. In 1888 a 40-room hotel was built (the remaining structure is the South Wing of the Ashland Depot Hotel) and the impact on the local economy was significant.

It was common for passengers to stop in Ashland for a day of shopping at the new mercantile establishments that were built on East Main Street like those housed in the Citizens Bank & Trust Co. Building and the Enders Building. Not only did the passengers and freight provide a stimulus to the economy but also, because Ashland was the end of a mountain division that employed more men than a comparable valley division, many workers relocated to Ashland and brought their families with them. They built modest homes in the area and it became a distinct neighborhood. The Nils Ahlstrom House is an example of this type of construction.

The railroad also provided impetus for a major event in Ashland's long involvement with formalized arts and cultural events beginning in 1892 when a proposal was made to bring traveling Chautauqua-program lecturers to Ashland. A national program presenting lectures, seminars, and edifying entertainment, Chautauqua brought the first mass culture to the area on a site now part of Litha Park--the first park in southern Oregon. (The outer walls of the original Chautauqua Dome--all that remains from the heyday of its popularity--now surround today's Elizabethan Theatre.) Nearby Central Point was proposed as a Chautauqua site during a Methodist camp meeting in 1892, but lost this opportunity to its neighbor because of Ashland's train access, small college, the attractive wooded Chautauqua site on a hill above the Plaza, and established hotels and restaurants. Although no original hotel or restaurant buildings survive, The Ganiard Building (Peerless Rooms Building) gives today's visitor a glimpse into the heyday of those times.

Ashland's history has a thread of continuity that distinguishes it from many other small western towns. That thread is a pervasive interest in education and the arts--predating the arrival of the railroad in 1884--and dominating the town today. The Chappell-Swedenburg House on the campus of Southern Oregon University is a jewel in the crown of today's university and may be said to represent Ashland's long-standing commitment to education. From the time Minister J. H. Skidmore opened his academy in 1872, through its development as the Ashland College and Normal School, to Southern Oregon State College, Ashland has always supported higher education. In turn, the presence of a college campus has been an inducement to economic and cultural growth. Southern Oregon University is the cornerstone of arts and education in Ashland. It offers outstanding programs in theater arts and the visual arts (including the Schneider Museum of Art and the new Visual Arts Center).

An educated citizenry was an asset also in developing early theater. Oscar and Lucinda Ganiard arrived with the railroad in 1884 and became major builders. The Ganiard Opera House that they constructed in 1890 on the corner of East Main and Pioneer seated 800 persons who viewed everything from debates and high school graduation ceremonies to musical performances and traveling theatrical productions. When a new high school was built in 1911, space was allocated for a little theater, where Sheridan's The Rivals was presented the following year. After a disastrous fire in 1912, the Opera House became the site of retail stores--replaced as a venue for theatrical presentations, debates, and other entertainments by the National Guard Armory ("Old Armory"). Used by different National Guard units until the modern armory was built, the Old Armory continually has provided Ashland with a public hall--a place where dances, plays, shows, weddings, gymnastics, and fairs have been held. Thus it has been an integral part of Ashland's cultural community for nearly 90 years.

Before the Depression, Ashland--like the rest of the country--was experiencing a booming economy despite the decline in railroading when Ashland was bypassed in favor of a faster route through Klamath Falls in 1927. Improved highways and the love affair with the automobile, together with the vision of turning Ashland into a "spa" resort on the model of Baden Baden (where tourists would come to sip the healing, slightly sulfuric Lithia waters) were behind the development of a modern luxury hotel downtown: The Mark Antony Motor Hotel (Ashland Springs Hotel). The Depression changed all that, but miracles still occur, and thanks in large part to the Certified Rehabilitation Program of the National Park Service, Ashland visitors today can step into what was once the "tallest building between Portland and San Francisco"--again a landmark part of our thriving downtown.


All the World's a Stage

From its earliest days Ashland has always been a "hometown" community where those who came stayed to put down roots. Even today as a tourist center, visitors will remark on this "hometown" character and the warmth and friendliness of the townspeople. Ashland's women in particular were anxious to improve their town. The Women's Civic Improvement Clubhouse (now the Winburn Community Center) is a direct result of their activities, which included the acquisition of Lithia Park and the support of musical activities such as City Band concerts and Ballet in the Park during the summer months. These women, who earlier had established the Ashland Free Public Library, fought for and succeeded in obtaining funding for the Carnegie Library in 1912.

Significantly, it was Alice Appelgate Peil, a woman whose ancestors were among the first Europeans in the area, who played a major role in first creating the climate for culture here and then working diligently to ensure its success. At her home, the Peil House, a group of women, known as the Ashland Study Club, gathered to lay the foundations for a number of Ashland cultural attractions including the Oregon Shakespeare Festival.

While the women were interested in beautification and hospitality, many of Ashland's men were active promoters; as far back as 1914 Bert R. Greer, the editor of the Ashland Daily Tidings newspaper, put out a special issue entitled "Ashland, Oregon: the Carlsbad of America," (comparing the city to the famous Bohemian spa, located in today's Czech Republic). However, despite its reputation as a healing site, recognized by indigenous populations long before Europeans arrived here and began to promote "Lithia Water" as a nostrum, circumstances decreed that the town would not become famous as a spa. Rather it became a magnet for vacationers in search of the theater that developed here.

Ashland's emergence as a theatrical center really began in 1935 with the efforts of college instructor Angus Bowmer to convince the city to add Shakespeare's plays to its already celebrated Fourth of July festivities. With help from the WPA, a simple Elizabethan stage modeled on Shakespeare's Globe Theatre was built inside the shell of the old Chatauqua arena. Here Bowmer and his college players would present The Merchant of Venice and Twelfth Night--a modest beginning that has burgeoned into a world-class repertory company.

Ashland has a long history of thriving religious congregations. Today, only Trinity Episcopal Church still serves the original denomination for which it was built. More typical of the adaptive nature of the town's historic preservation is the First Baptist Church which, like Ashland itself, has been reinvented to serve theatrical and tourist needs. Those residents and visitors seeking lighter theatrical fare than that provided by the Oregon Shakespeare Festival (OSF) flock to the old First Baptist Church, now known as the Oregon Cabaret Theatre. This is only one of many community theaters that complement the OSF professional productions and that perform year round.

The First National Bank Building, which houses the Festival's Welcome and Education Center, is another example of an historic building's adaptation to contemporary use. The Welcome Center has daily schedules informing patrons of OSF shows and events, interactive stations that provide access to the OSF web site, and archival information and video footage about OSF. Maps brochures, and other printed information also are available. OSF company members and volunteers staff the center. The Education Center provides much-needed space for student workshops, classes and discussions. OSF serves hundreds of student groups each season introducing young audiences to live theater.

In Ashland, the Shakespeare stage has drawn amateur and community theater groups; an abundance of classical, folk, and jazz musicians; and many painters and sculptors. So Ashland itself has become a cultural stage where residents and visitors alike enjoy these diverse presentations against the backdrop of a town whose commitment to historic preservation has made it uniquely viable today.


List of Sites


Hargadine Cemetery
Orlando Coolidge House
Isaac Woolen House
W. H. Atkinson House
G. M. and Kate Grainger House
Emil and Alice Applegate Peil House
Domingo Perozzi House
Women's Civic Improvement Clubhouse
Lithia Park
Ashland Downtown Historic District
IOOF Building
Whittle Garage Building
First National Bank, Vaupel Store and
Oregon Hotel Buildings

Mark Antony Motor Hotel (Ashland Springs Hotel)
Citizen's Banking & Trust Co. Building
Enders Building

Fordyce Roper House-Southern Oregon

First Baptist Church
Trinity Episcopal Church
Ashland Railroad Addition Historic District
John McCall House
Ashland Oregon National Guard Armory
John and Charlotte Pelton House
Peerless Rooms Building
Ashland Depot Hotel, South Wing
Nils Ahlstrom House
Ashland Cemetery
George Taverner House
Chappell-Swedenburg House
John P. Walker House
Mountain View Cemetery
Ashland Municipal Powerhouse

Hargadine Cemetery

Robert Hargadine, a prominent merchant, was one of three original founders of the small settlement first known as Ashland Mills. In 1867 his one-year-old daughter Katie died; hers was the first recorded burial on the sloping hill north of Ashland now known as Hargadine Cemetery. This family graveyard was established on land owned by James Haworth, who accommodated the graves of the Hargadine and Farnham families. Haworth formally deeded one and one-half acres to the families "for the purpose of a Cemetery or Grave Yard for the burial of the dead and for no other purpose." Associated with the period of earliest developement in the Ashland area, many prominent early settlers, including Asa Fordyce, Ashmun Butler, and John P. Walker, are buried here. As the city-owned Ashland Cemetery became overcrowded, pressure on Hargadine increased.

Late in the 19th century, the Hargadine Cemetery Association took title and responsibility for landscaping, road construction, and annual cleaning of the cemetery. The City provided water pipes and a tool house and granted permission to the sexton to charge one dollar per lot sold, in part to pay for the blasting powder necessary to dig graves out of the hardpan and granite soil. The setting of the cemetery is characterized by native black and white oaks, ponderosa pine, and madrone trees, along with native grasses and a variety of historic ornamental plantings. A historic post and wire fence of 1910 replaced earlier boundary fencing. The work of local master stone carvers James and Ann Hill Russell, and John Carr Whipp, can be seen in the variety of monument types found at Hargardine Cemetery--ranging in size and design from small plain markers to large tablets, monuments and ledger markers.

As older members of pioneer families died or moved away, care of the plots declined. While the burial grounds had been approved for transfer to the City by 1930, the economic crisis of the Depression prevented that from occurring, and cemetery conditions worsened through the World War II years and beyond. Finally, because no official transfer of deed was found, the City resorted to the legislative process, and in 1989 by means of an Act of the Oregon Legislature (House Bill 3017) the cemetery shifted from private to municipal ownership.

Hargadine Cemetery, 345 Sheridan St., is open to the public during daylight hours.


Orlando Coolidge House

The Orlando Coolidge House stands as a reminder of early agriculture, beginning when Orlando Coolidge came to the area in 1862, purchasing a large farm and becoming the first commercial nurseryman in Jackson County. A. G. Walling, an early county historian, wrote in 1884 in A History of Southern Oregon, Comprising Jackson, Josephine, Douglas, Curry and Coos Counties, that the large nursery Orlando Coolidge established in 1869, "Is one of the most extensive of its kind in Southern Oregon. It contains almost all varieties of fruits, nuts, shrubs, flowers, and ornamental trees to be found on the coast. . ." The Rogue Valley is still known for its outstanding fruit orchards. By around 1877, Coolidge had prospered sufficiently to build his imposing Ashland home on the edge of about 35 acres of fruit and nut trees. After her parents' death, Minnie Coolidge lived in the house until 1929. The Coolidge House's Italianate architecture, which reflects both the time and economic status of its builder, retains most of its significant design characteristics. This house, situated on a high bank overlooking Main Street in Ashland, is architecturally one of the community's finest examples of early private residences.

As befits its original owner, there are large and attractive trees on the property, whose front landscaping resembles that of the adjoining properties, the Woolen and Atkinson houses--known locally as "The Three Sisters." They indicate a shift in style and increased opulence resulting from the prosperity brought by the arrival of the railroad (Ashland's population experienced a 111 percent gain from 1880 to 1890). All are joined by a stone wall built at the turn of the century when the hill was cut back to level out the North Main Street entrance to Ashland. Although the beautiful trees planted by Mr. Coolidge were sacrificed to this highway construction, the resulting retaining wall created a high bank on which all three houses sit, giving them a beautiful prospect across the valley to Grizzly Peak. The Coolidge House now serves Ashland's tourist trade as a bed and breakfast establishment.

The Orlando Coolidge House is located at 137 North Main St. It is now the Coolidge House Bed and Breakfast, call 541-482-4721 or visit for further information.


Isaac Woolen House

The Isaac Woolen House was built in 1876 by architect-builder L. S. P. Marsh, a local lumberman whose planing mill supplied the materials for a number of late 19th-century homes. The design continued the strong Italianate residential character of the neighboring Orlando Coolidge House, with a bracketed cornice at the eaves and smaller versions of the roof detail above windows and porches on the lower portions of the facade, as well as two ornate bay windows. Like Coolidge, Isaac Woolen came to Jackson County before 1860 and farmed in the Bear Creek Valley before building this home in Ashland. In 1878 he became one of the first Ashland townspeople to bring water directly to the house when a water pipe from the West Ashland Ditch was installed.

Woolen was a charter member of the Ashland Masonic Lodge (organized in 1875). Another prominent Ashlander to live in the house was Captain Thomas Smith, a longtime Jackson County farmer who bought the house in 1884 when he moved into town from his ranch property. Smith had been active politically, serving in the territorial legislature from 1855 to 1856. Twice elected to the State Legislature (1868 and 1880), he was a founder of the Bank of Ashland. The times that these prominent men occupied the Woolen House spanned the years that Ashland changed from a small farming supply center to a functioning business and cultural community, supporting churches, a bank, and a newspaper.

The Isaac Woolen House, located at 131 North Main St., is a private residence not open to the public.


W.H. Atkinson House

The W. H. Atkinson House, is one of Ashland's outstanding examples of the Italian Bracketed or Italianate Style and is among the most elaborately decorated and best preserved of its type. Atkinson was born in England in 1844 and came to Ashland in 1874, where he was active in the town's principal industrial and banking enterprises; he was one of the founders of the Bank of Ashland. On his arrival he purchased a one-third share in the Ashland Flour Mill, entering into partnership with J. M. McCall . In 1879 he became a partner and business manager of the Ashland Woolen Manufacturing Company. That same year he helped organize the Ashland Library and Reading Room Association. The following year he helped found the Presbyterian Church (he was its first clerk and treasurer), which was built across the street from his future home.

When it came time to build a suitable residence for his family, it was natural for him to admire the site of the Coolidge and Woolen mansions, and in 1880 Atkinson bought the southerly half of Woolen's lot. Construction began in August, when he was 36 years old. After his early death at the age of 50 in 1894, his widow Eugenia remained in the house for 24 years. She too was active in the community, donating funds for the construction of the Atkinson Memorial Bridge over Ashland Creek in Lithia Park.

Located at 125 North Main St., the W. H. Atkinson House is now operated as the "Queen Ann Bed and Breakfast." Call 541-482-0220 for further information.


G.M. And Kate Grainger House

The G. M. and Kate Grainger House is an eclectic style residence with Italianate, Stick, and Eastlake elements built in 1890 for G. M. and Kate Grainger. Mr. Grainger was a prominent Ashland mayor who presided over the city government during construction of Ashland's City Hall in 1891. Designed by local builder W. J. Schmidt, the residence embodies distinct characteristics of these styles--steeped, hipped roofs, a two-story projecting bay, stick paneling under and above windows, curved brackets, and perforated panel and bargeboards. Of approximately 500 19th-century houses in Ashland's local and National Register historic districts, the Grainger House is one of the best representatives of this style. When the Graingers' purchased the house in the early spring of 1890 the Ashland Daily Tidings reported: "Mr. G. M. Grainger, who had purchased the Fountain property on the corner of Granite and High Street will make a great improvement in the place beginning as soon as he obtains title and possession. He will build a new front addition to the house and will have one of the neatest and prettiest residences in town."

On its completion in 1890, the building was a modified L-shaped volume, two stories in height on a high basement. A verandah with rounded corner filling the southwest angle was offset by the two-story polygonal bay on the principle fašade. This configuration was later enlarged by two single-story rear additions, the first in 1940. The latest addition, a garage at right angles to the long axis of the house, was built in 1989. While these additions are relatively extensive in area, they are decidedly subordinate to the original 1890 home. During Grainger's mayoral terms many improvements were made to the city-sidewalks, streetlights, and additions to the city park. After he left office, the family continued to be active in city affairs. When their daughter was married in 1903, the ceremony took place at the bay window in the front parlor. During their tenancy in the house, the Graingers occasionally boarded individuals or small families to supplement their income, a tradition continuing today at the many Ashland bed and breakfast establishments catering to theater patrons.

The G. M. and Kate Grainger House, located at 35 Granite St., is a private residence that is not open to the public.


Emil and Alice Applegate Peil House

The Emil and Alice Applegate Peil House is a rather subdued and partially eclectic mix of bungalow or cottage design and certain more traditional elements from the earlier Victorian period. As the Plaza developed into an industrial and commercial area, prosperous businessmen built their new homes along Granite Street to have a view of their companies below. So Emil Peil built his house overlooking his wagon and agricultural implements business as he prepared to marry a teacher who was a granddaughter of Lindsay Applegate, one of the pioneers who blazed the Applegate Trail to Oregon. Alice Applegate Peil was an early educator, the first female school principal in the area. She was responsible for organizing the Ashland Study Club that was to play an important role in developing the Chautauqua, the Ashland Library, and the Oregon Shakespeare Festival. In addition to her social and cultural interests, Mrs. Peil was an active partner in the Peil Implement Company. In that capacity, she purchased an automobile in 1916 and became one of the first women to drive on Oregon highways throughout southern Oregon.

A single-story building, the Emil and Alice Applegate Peil House was built by local contractors Moyer and Van Natta and completed in August 1910. The wood frame building with a distinctive cut sandstone porch retains considerable integrity in design, use of materials, and setting. In order to have easier access to the family business, the Peils built a flight of steel steps down to the Plaza. As their use became popular with Ashland residents, Mrs. Peil donated the northern six feet of her lot to the city, thus formalizing the public use of the walkway known as the Alice Applegate Peil Walkway.

The Emil and Alice Applegate Peil House is located at 52 Granite St. It is a private residence and is not open to the public.


Domingo Perozzi House

Domingo Perozzi established his Ashland Creamery in 1896--the only creamery in Jackson County--and soon was distributing dairy products over a large area of Southern Oregon and Northern California. Perozzi was born on February 18, 1871, in Switzerland. His father moved to California when Domingo was small and he grew up there with his family. The Domingo Perozzi House was constructed in 1902 with prominent Italianate features that suggest the simpler approach to architectural detail common after 1900. The property surrounding the house was originally large, extending down a bank to what is now Lithia Park. The Perozzi House was constructed during one of Ashland's most economically healthy periods. At the close of the 19th century, the railroad was bringing many new residents, and enabling farms and businesses to ship their products out of the valley. Perozzi was well aware of the economic importance of the railroad when he began his creamery in Ashland in the autumn of 1896. By 1905 the Ashland Creamery was distributing milk, butter, and other items to a large area in Southern Oregon and Northern California.

During the last years of his life, Domingo Perozzi contributed to the dairy industry in Oregon, working to improve dairy stock and possessing one of the finest herds of registered Brown Swiss cattle in the state at his farm near Eugene, Oregon. The Perozzis' influence in Ashland is linked both to the Park and to education. Before his death, Mr. Perozzi and his wife deeded three acres of his land to the city for park use. He also was instrumental in purchasing the Italian marble fountain from the 1915 Pan-American Exposition in San Francisco and donating it to the park where it is now known as the Butler-Perozzi Fountain. The Perozzis' gift of 40 acres of land helped determine the site for constructing the campus of the college now known as Southern Oregon University. The original house, owned by the Perozzi family for nearly half a century, has been extensively enlarged.

The Domingo Perozzi House is located at 88 Granite St. It is a private residence and is not open to the public.

Women's Civic Improvement Clubhouse

The Ashland Women's Civic Improvement Club was founded in 1908 for the purpose of improving and beautifying Ashland. The home for this civic organization was built from 1921 to 1922, and was later known as the Winburn Way Community Center. The Civic Club, instrumental in obtaining additional land for Lithia Park and in supporting Ashland's Fourth of July parades, always saw its role as promoting civic pride (and incidentally boosting tourism by providing a place to welcome women visitors to town). The work of Ashland's Civic Club was typical of these progressive era groups around the country. Raising funds to build a clubhouse was not easy and it was only through the philanthropy of Jesse Winburn (for whom the building was later named) that the club ladies found the funds to erect their Arts and Crafts bungalow, with a central covered entrance porch.

After the formal dedication of the clubhouse it was used for meetings, banquets, shows and tourist events until it became a USO headquarters during World War II. After the War it served as the home of the Ashland Parks and Recreation Department for a number of years. The building became quite run down, and in 1985 the City of Ashland took control of the property, which was restored and rededicated to its original use for local club meetings, dances, exhibitions and presentations. Thus, it continues to contribute to the original ideals of its founders.

The Women's Civic Improvement Clubhouse, now the Ashland Community Center, located across from Lithia Park at 59 Winburn Way, is open to the public as a meeting space, and is also available for private rental for a nominal fee. Call 541-488-0231 for further information.

Lithia Park

Lithia Park, which began with eight acres in 1892 as a place where the Chautauqua Association could bring entertainment and culture to southern Oregon, has continued to grow and change along with the community that surrounds it. Its growth and development from a Chautauqua site (where the original Shakespeare theater began in 1935) to a complete reflection of the public parks movement makes it of great historical as well as landscape interest. Today 42 of its 93 acres are listed in the National Register. Visitors approaching Lithia Park will note the towering Tree of Heaven at the Plaza entrance planted in the 19th century by--according to legend--Abel Helman's Chinese cook. In 1908 at the urging of the Women's Civic Improvement Club, the people of Ashland passed a measure to include park maintenance in the City Charter.

The following year the old flour mill was torn down, a park board was elected, and additional acres bordering Ashland Creek were acquired. In 1910 the lower duck pond and waterfall feeding it were constructed, while Bert Greer, an ambitious newspaper editor conceived of making Ashland a world-famous spa by capitalizing on the Lithia springs of the area. The development of today's park began in 1914 with the hiring of John McLaren (also designer of San Francisco's Golden Gate Park) as landscape architect. Lithia Park embodies the distinctive characteristics of park design in the tradition of Frederick Law Olmsted. McLaren's landscape plan for Lithia Park was organic in layout, following the natural canyon of the water course. The plantings were naturalistic to the extent that native alders, oaks, conifers and madrones were incorporated, but other plants, such as willows, maples, sycamores, and numerous ornamental varieties were introduced and selected for hardiness, form and color. Once within the Park, the visitor can walk along the trail on the east side of Ashland Creek to the Park headquarters and obtain a map showing the location of both historic (e.g., 1915: Lithia Water Fountain, Butler-Perozzi Fountain Terrace, Sycamore Grove, Upper Duck Pond) and more modern park features including a trail guide to the most significant trees throughout the Park.

Lithia Park is located at 59 Winburn Way and is open to the public. Trail guides and other booklets about the park can be obtained from the park office of Ashland Parks and Rec. Dept., open Monday-Friday 8:00am to 5:00pm, and free performances are frequently offered at the Bulter Bandshell. For performance schedules and further information call 541-488-5340 or visit the website. The Chamber of Commerce offers nature walks Sundays, Wednesdays, and Fridays at 10:00am (call 541-482-3486 or visit the website).


Ashland Downtown Historic District

When European settlers arrived in 1852, they established Ashland's commercial district as the town's physical and economic center. Initially focused on thearea known as the "Plaza," the district gradually expanded east along Main Street to Third Street, with most major buildings completed by 1929. From its founding at the point where the Southern Oregon Emigrant Route (the Applegate Trail) bisected Ashland Creek--through the evolution of the route from stage to rail to automobile transportation--a lineal pattern has remained. The earliest surviving map of Ashland, drawn in 1860, indicates a three-block arrangement of lots clustered in front of a flour mill. On these blocks stood the wood frame Ashland Boarding House, a livery, blacksmith shop, and Robert Hargadine's Store and residence. In 1867, after intense competition with Jacksonville, promoters built the Ashland Woolen Mills on the banks of Ashland Creek near the present intersection of B and Water streets. Although the woolen mill, a nursery, and a Methodist college contributed to the town's growth, Ashland's economy remained farm-based for the first 30 years of its existence. Wheat and oats, corn and hogs, sheep, hay, apples, peaches and pears made farming profitable and encouraged settlers to stay. Ashland's commercial district expanded gradually around the clearing in front of the flour mill and residential neighborhoods developed nearby on Granite and Church streets, as well as on Main, Pine (Helman) and Oak streets.

Faced with a pressing need for public services, Ashland applied for incorporation and on October 13, 1874, the Oregon State Legislature granted the town a charter. A fire swept through the commercial district on March 11, 1879, destroying all the buildings on the west side of the open area that had become known as the Plaza. By the summer of 1879 brick buildings had replaced some of these buildings. When the railroad came to Ashland, the change was dramatic. The rapidly increasing population required the establishment of law enforcement, water systems, street improvements and fire protection. In 1884 and 1886 several brick commercial buildings, new sidewalks and street crossings were completed on the Plaza to accommodate the rapidly growing community. By 1885 demand for increased government representation led to a new charter and Ashland's incorporation as a city.

With few exceptions, Ashland's downtown buildings have been remodeled or reconfigured to meet changing business needs; today the city has instituted "Downtown Design Standards" to help keep its distinct characteristics. Changing transportation patterns, closely linked with the town's interest in tourism, also had a major impact on the town's development. The early mills that gave Ashland its first commercial prosperity were located along Ashland Creek, which remains the hub for the theaters, shopping, and dining experiences that characterize the town today. Surrounded by early residential uses and set against a visual backdrop of Ashland Canyon and the foothills to the south, with views of the rural hillsides across the valley to the north, Ashland's downtown is a dense commercial core. It is characterized by vertical masonry buildings and traditional architecture, set within a small valley that still maintains an overall rural character. The Ashland Downtown Historic District possesses many historic homes, churches, commercial and civic buildings, including the IOOF Building, the Whittle Garage Building, the First National Bank, Vaupel Store and Oregon Hotel Buildings, the Mark Antony Motor Hotel (Ashland Springs Hotel), the Citizen's Banking & Trust Co. Building, the Enders Building, the Fordyce Roper House-Southern Oregon Hospital, the First Baptist Church and the Trinity Episcopal Church.

The Ashland Downtown Historic District is roughly bounded by Lithia Way and C St., Church, Lithia Park and Hargadine & Gresham sts. Tours of the district are offered by the city every May during National Preservation Week. Old Ashland Walking Tours are offered from June 15-September 15, Monday-Saturday at 10:00 am, beginning at the Plaza Information Booth. There is a fee, call 541-552-9159 for further information.


IOOF Building

The 1879 International Order of Oddfellows (IOOF) Building stands in its original location. Before its completion a disastrous fire, which started in a blacksmith shop on the Plaza, destroyed most of the buildings in the area. Shortly thereafter the Lodge joined with local merchants to build a fireproof brick structure. Its eclectic style with Italianate elements makes it typical of the period when Ashland's booming growth permitted expansion. Like many western towns, fraternal organizations, along with churches, provided the primary social outlet. The IOOF Building was built by the merchants and the Oddfellows. Locally designed, it was built of local clay brick, and constructed by local brick makers. The September 19, 1879, edition of the Ashland Daily Tidings carried the following announcement: "The foundation of the Oddfellows and Merchants building is complete. It is finished and ready for brick-work."

The IOOF Building has maintained its architectural integrity and continued use as a commercial building. Although the IOOF Lodge no longer occupies the upper floor (it is now a restaurant), the lower half of the building has been in continual use by local merchants, and today merchants continue to serve the public in ground-story shops. The building has an eclectic style common in small western towns during the middle of the late 19th century.

The IOOF Building is located at 49-59 N. Main St. "On the Plaza." The street at the rear of the building facing Ashland Creek is the site of a weekend Artisans' Market during the summer months. The stores and eating establishments that now occupy the building are open to the public during normal business hours.


Whittle Garage Building

The Whittle Garage Building has been used by a variety of businesses throughout its history. Completed in 1925 by Floyd Whittle, it is the best surviving example in Ashland's downtown of the simple, utilitarian falsefront commercial building type that dominated much of the southern Oregon's downtown landscape since the middle of the 19th century. It is also the only remaining example of the auto repair/machine shops and filling stations constructed in downtown Ashland during the first third of the 20th century, and one of the few early 20th-century industrial buildings remaining downtown. The Whittle Garage is a rather late example of a falsefront building, a vernacular type which arose in the 19th century (along with the advent of economical frame construction) that consisted of an extended fašade concealing the smaller frame and creating the impression of a larger business. Falsefronts easily adapted to the fire-resistant masonry construction needed for garages and new service industries introduced with the automobile. Historic photographs indicate that the original facade featured unpainted concrete with multipaned storefront windows.

Known as the Pioneer Glass and Cabinet Shop from late 1953 until 1996, the building's poured concrete facade, simple storefront detail, and stepped parapet are remarkably faithful to their original design. The Pioneer Glass owners were originally hired to repair extensive damage to the building caused by a major fire; they then decided to move their business into the garage. Recently combining commitments to preservation and gastronomy, the Whittle Garage Building has been converted to a more public function. The current owners participated in the National Parks Service's Certified Rehabilitation program for which they received a historic preservation tax credit, and converted the garage into the Standing Stone Microbrewery and Restaurant. The building continues to retain its essential industrial character and open interior space while serving the economy of the city's thriving downtown.

The Whittle Garage Building (Standing Stone Microbrewery/Restaurant) is located at 101 Oak St. It is open to the public 11:00am to midnight daily. Call 541-482-2448 for further information.


First National Bank, Vaupel Store, Oregon Hotel Buildings

The First National Bank Building, now used as part of the administrative office for the Oregon Shakespeare Festival, was built in 1909 to house the successful banking business that was founded in 1901. It was one of the first commercial buildings on East Main Street after the turn of the century and drew other businesses away from the Plaza area as the bank became Ashland's primary financial facility during those early decades. The building contains a variety of masonry work incorporated in the walls and decorative detail.

In 1910, the brick and concrete Vaupel Store/Oregon Hotel Building was constructed directly north and adjacent to the bank, sharing a common wall. Stylistically eclectic, the architect tried to tie this building visually to its neighbor with brick work trim. The first floor was commercial space with large plate glass windows to allow the maximum space for merchandise displays. C. H. Vaupel, longtime Ashland businessman, first leased this space and remained there until his death in 1931. The Oregon Hotel occupied the second floor, which had 18 guest rooms, each with hot and cold water and a telephone.

In the more than 90 years since its construction, the Bank has been used only for that purpose, leased office space, and the Oregon Shakespeare Festival, which purchased it in 1967. The building has always been at the economic heart of the community. Today, as part of Ashland's primary tourist attraction and source of local education and entertainment enrichment, it is an important factor in the Festival's integration within Ashland and in the stabilization of the central business district. The courtyard between the Festival theaters and the First National Bank building serves as a metaphor for the continuation of history and tradition so typical of Ashland.

The First National Bank Building, Vaupel Store and Oregon Hotel Buildings is located at 100 E. Main St. The Festival's Welcome and Education Center on the Main St. side is open to the public Tuesday through Sunday: summer hours are from 9:30am to 8:00pm, spring and fall from 9:30am to 6:00pm.


Mark Antony Motor Hotel

The Mark Antony Motor Hotel, was erected in 1924-25 just before the Great Depression. Originally known as the Lithia Springs Hotel, it was intended to be a luxury hotel with first-class accommodations for the many visitors that the city expected to be drawn to Ashland as a health resort and vacation center. The building was designed by architects Tourtellotte and Hummell entirely of reinforced concrete in an eclectic style with Romanesque, English Tudor, Gothic, and Neo-Classical Revival elements; it was to be the tallest building between Portland and San Francisco. This architectural firm later won the contract to design the new Idaho State Capitol, which was completed in 1912. Typical of some of J. E. Tourtellotte's later designs, such as the Boise Hotel (1930) and the Baker Hotel (1929), the Lithia Springs Hotel has a nine-story central tower with two short wings. The main entry has a catenary arch with inset windows, flanked by two round or Romanesque arches. Tiffany-type stained glass is used in the upper windows and in the three arched openings along First Street.

When its original promise failed to materialize, the Lithia Springs was renamed in 1961 as the Mark Antony to capitalize on the economic revival brought about by the success of the Oregon Shakespeare Festival. An ill-fated 1978 renovation and continuing financial problems contributed to a downward spiral only recently halted by its purchase by a new owner who undertook an extensive restoration. This renovation, under the National Parks Service's Certified Rehabilitation program for which the owners received a historic preservation tax credit, has returned the hotel to its original grandeur. Now known as the Ashland Springs Hotel, the completed renovation combines elements of its earlier style with the modern comfort required by today's travelers. Its location at the center of downtown will prove attractive to Festival-goers and locals alike. Thus the landmark hotel tower has resumed its original prime position in Ashland's landscape.

The Mark Antony Motor Hotel (Ashland Springs Hotel) is located at 212 E. Main St. The hotel has several restaurants and serves afternoon tea in the grand lobby. Visit or call 541-488-1701 for further information.

The Ashland Springs Hotel is a Historic Hotels of America member, a program of the National Trust for Historic Preservation.

Citizen's Banking and Trust Co. Building

In 1910, Citizen's Bank retained architect W. F. Bowen to design a bank building--two stories of buff-colored brick with granite detailing--and make it visually compatible with the building to the east, which was then under construction for Clyde Payne, a local real estate agent. Upon completion, the bank occupied the prominent corner storefront while the Payne section--more modestly constructed of the brick without any granite trim--housed a grocery and barbershop. The combined second floor, accessed via a shared entry, provided space for a number of Ashland professionals. The Citizen's Banking and Trust Company Building clearly reflects a period of civic pride, economic growth, and prosperity unequalled in Ashland's history. The building's location firmly anchors Ashland's modern business district as the outstanding and most intact building constructed during the city's boom years from 1909 to 1913. The new bank met with immediate success and grew rapidly. After only a year of operation, its resources increased more than 200 percent, rising from $115,596 in December of 1910 to $217,879 in November of 1911. This rapid growth was attributed to the community orientation of the bank's loan policies. The bank had a policy of turning deposits back into the local economy.

Like many other successful financial institutions, the bank failed during the Depression; the building later housed retail and office space at the ground level, while the second floor was converted to office and apartment use. It remains a center of shopping in the bustling downtown historic district. Although the bank liquidated its assets during the Great Depression, none of the depositors lost any of their money.

The Citizen's Banking & Trust Co. Building is located at 232-242 E. Main St. The stores and eating establishments that now occupy the building are open to the public during normal business hours.


Enders Building

This building, constructed in 1910, was designed by Rogue Valley architect Frank Chamberlain Clark and has strong associations with H. G. Enders, an influential Ashland businessman who operated the largest mercantile establishment between Sacramento and Portland here in the period 1910 to 1928. Upon the death of H. G. Enders in 1928, local businesses closed the day of his funeral. Clark began his architectural practice in Ashland in 1903. While in a previous job in New York he was responsible for the architectural details of Madison Square Garden. Ashland's first concrete commercial building, the Enders Building has "Chicago" style characteristics very different from the usual vernacular brick of its period. Its construction marked the shift in commerce away from the traditional town center in the mill area around the Plaza. Upon completition, it was the largest building of its kind in Southern Oregon and for many years was the largest mercantile establishment between Sacramento and Portland.

The Enders Building was an early example of the department store concept with fire doors between each shop providing an interior walkway through the long structure, while outer doors to each shop opened off Main Street. These shops included men's clothing and furnishings, ladies ready-to-wear and dress goods, a 15-cents store, a music department, a restaurant and confectioners, hardware and sporting goods, and a grocery. Passengers from the morning train stopping in Ashland often shopped there and returned home on the later train. Today the individual shopkeepers maintain the Enders Building as an example of Ashland's continuing prosperity. The second-floor Columbia Hotel, the only surviving hotel from this period, continues to flourish today.

The Enders Building is located at 250-300 E. Main St. The stores and eating establishments that now occupy the building are open to the public during normal business hours. The Columbia Hotel which occupies a portion of the building can be reached at 1-800-718-2530 or at


Fordyce Roper House - Southern Oregon Hospital

The Fordyce Roper House-Southern Oregon Hopital was constructed on East Main Street in 1886--the most expensive of the 12 fine residences erected that year. Built for Fordyce and Julia Roper, the house is a two-story balloon-framed residence in the Eastlake style. Fordyce Roper, a miller from Kern County, California, came to Ashland and bought the Ashland Flour Mill in 1884. One of Ashland's wealthiest citizens, he was a member of the State Normal School Board of Regents. Roper sold the property in 1899 to Jane Sather from San Francisco, who lived there only a short time and then donated it to the University of California. H. G. Enders, a prominent Ashland developer, bought the house and leased it to serve as Southern Oregon Hospital and later as Ashland's sanitarium.

In 1910 the house was moved up the hill to its current location to allow for the then-revolutionary idea of developing a commercial district on Main Street so far from the Plaza. Despite its use as a medical facility and then as a rooming house and apartment building, and suffering several disastrous fires, the building still retains its historic appearance. A careful restoration was undertaken by the present owners, who purchased the building in 1983 to refurbish it as The Winchester Inn, a bed and breakfast establishment popular with Ashland theatergoers because of its proximity to Festival theaters.

The Fordyce Roper House-Southern Oregon Hospital is located at 35 S. Second St. and is currently operating as The Winchester Country Inn bed & breakfast. Its dining room is open to the public for Sunday brunch 9:30am to 12:30pm year round; it is open for dinner daily from June to October, 5:30pm to 9:00pm, and from November to May, Tuesday-Thursday 5:00pm to 8:00pm and Friday and Saturday 5:30pm to 8:30pm. Visit the inn's website at or call 1-800-972-4991 for further information.


Trinity Episcopal Church

Trinity Episcopal Church, constructed between 1894 and 1895 from drawings by local builder W. J. Schmidt, is the oldest church in Ashland, and the only 19th-century church still occupied by its original denomination. Trinity Church is a rectangular building of frame construction and sided with wood channel siding. Historical church fixtures include the brass altar cross donated in 1899 and the baptismal font of white Lucindo marble hand carved by Ashland craftsman Samuel Penniston that was acquired around 1905. One of two 19th-century churches in Ashland that retains its original architectural qualities, the building contains noticeable characteristics of the Gothic Revival style, including a steeply pitched gable roof, a pointed west window, a south porch with gable, and trussed rafter roof construction.

Located in the heart of Ashland, the church has maintained a strong relationship with the surrounding businesses and residential areas. In addition to being a house of worship, the church has cultivated its present position as an integral part of the community through its use for concerts, a facility for many Ashland institutions and organizations, and its close relationship throughout the years with the Oregon Shakespeare Festival. The changes made to the church over the years have not compromised its architectural integrity, as enlargements have been made with sensitive concern for the building's original design. The most recent addition attests to the congregation's continuing commitment to retaining Trinity's historical significance even as it grows to meet modern day needs.

Trinity Episcopal Church is located at 44 N. Second St. and is open to the public. Call 541-482-2656 or visit the church's website for a schedule of services.


Ashland Railroad Addition Historic District

When the railroad arrived from the north in early 1884, to be followed three years later by the completion of the through line into California, Ashland became a major port of entry into Oregon and the Pacific Northwest. The anticipated arrival of the railroad instigated a major wave of building and the platting of this section of Ashland when it was sold to the Oregon and California Railroad Company in 1873. The subsection that grew around the new Southern Pacific Railroad Depot doubled Ashland's size and quickly developed into a distinct region within the city largely governed by "train time." Ashland's Railroad District provided housing and traveler-based commercial services that were almost entirely related to the railroad. Lots were created in random patterns and, beginning in 1884, residences and commercial buildings were constructed. The Ashland Depot Hotel was built in 1888 and by 1890, lodging houses, saloons, restaurants, stores and warehouses formed a separate commercial district on A Street where residents could conveniently purchase goods and services.

By 1893, the national depression slowed building in the district, but when railroad business increased in 1898, the second major period of growth began. As railroad workers and tradespeople moved into the area after 1900, one or one-and-one-half story vernacular frame houses were being constructed that provided affordable housing for the brakemen, firemen, and conductors, as well as carpenters, barbers, plumbers and painters. Ashland's population nearly doubled from 1900 to 1910, rising above 5,000. The growth of this section of Ashland was affected by the Southern Pacific Railroad's Natron Cut-off, a new route that created a direct route between California and Portland.

After 1927, when Southern Pacific shifted its main route to the east, the Ashland Railroad Addition Historic District became a quiet backwater within the larger city, removed from the downtown area's automobile-related development. During and after World War II, the old Railroad Addition became the site of affordable residential and modest industrial uses, while still retaining its historic character in large part because of the city's local historic district designation. Today it still retains a strong visual connection to its early days while having added a number of art galleries and other cultural attractions. Many of Ashland's historic buildings, sites, and homes lie within this historic district, including the John McCall House, the Ashland Cemetery, the John and Charlotte Pelton House, the Ashland National Guard Armory, the Peerless Rooms Building, and the South Wing of the Ashland Depot Hotel, among others.

The Ashland Railroad Addition Historic District is roughly bounded by Lithia Way/East Main, Oak, A and 8th sts in Ashland.


John McCall House

John M. McCall's two-story Victorian Italianate house was built in 1883 for the founder of the Ashland Woolen Mill, Ashland Library, and Bank of Ashland. He also served as a councilman, Mayor of Ashland and in the Oregon State Assembly. The house is an outstanding example of its architectural style in Ashland and is one of the best preserved examples of Italianate residential architecture in Oregon. L. S. P. Marsh, the prominent local craftsman who built the house, also constructed the Isaac Woolen House as well as other public and commercial buildings in Ashland. The McCall House's distinctive millwork is typical of Marsh's craftsmanship and has been recently restored.

McCall (1825-1895), was one of southern Oregon's leading citizens. Born in Pennsylvania, he migrated to Yreka, California during the gold rush, and then turned north in 1850 to take mining claims on tributaries on the Applegate River outside Jacksonville, Oregon. McCall farmed along Wagner Creek until 1856, ran a miners store, and in 1859 purchased interest in the Ashland Flour Mill. In 1861 the First Oregon Cavalry formed and he was commissioned 2nd Lieutenant of Company D, and by 1865 was promoted to Captain. After the Civil War, McCall served the region in several political offices, including the first treasurer of the city of Ashland. In 1876 he was elected on the People's Ticket as a representative to the Oregon State Legislature. Occupied by the McCall family and their descendants until 1964, the McCall House was the scene of memorable social and political gatherings befitting a family whose involvement in Ashland spanned several generations. Today's Ashland visitors can still see the grand old magnolia tree planted in the front lawn by Mary McCall in 1890.

Located at 153 Oak St., the McCall House currently is operated as the McCall House Bed and Breakfast. Call 1-800-808-9749 or visit for further information.


Ashland Oregon National Guard Armory

The Oregon National Guard Armory in Ashland was built from 1912 to 1913 as headquarters for the town's National Guard Company. It is one of only four pre-World War I armories extant in western Oregon. Designed by Oregon's first State Architect William C. Knighton, the Armory reflects the influence of two period styles, California Mission and Gothic Revival. Characteristics of the former include symmetrical composition, curvilinear lines on the parapet, and casement windows, while Gothic Revival elements are seen in modified pointed arched openings, masonry facing on a concrete frame, and battlements.

Ashland's history of loyal military service began during the Civil War when Captain Abel Helman formed Company A, First Regiment, First Brigade of the Oregon Militia; it was to be a continuing commitment into the 20th century. Significantly, when a meeting was held in January 1911 to discuss possible armory construction, Ashland residents who attended the meeting were particularly interested in the armory's potential as a community center. Armory construction in the latter part of the 19th century and the early decades of the 20th figured significantly in the military development of Oregon.

Although designed for military use, in November 1912 members of the First Company Coast Artillery Corps announced plans to hold public entertainment in order to equip the armory with chairs, lockers, and stage fittings. The building was the site of the funeral of the first Ashland soldier to die in World War I and it served as a contact point for families whose men were overseas. Recently refurbished, the building now houses offices and a public hall that continues its community service tradition.

The Ashland Oregon National Guard Armory is located at 208 Oak St. Public events are frequently held here. Call 541-482-1271 for further information.


John and Charlotte Pelton House

The John and Charlotte Pelton House was built in 1894 by Ashland builder W. J. Schmidt. The Peltons were natives of the Rogue Valley area; Charlotte's parents, Oscar and Lucinda Ganiard, were prominent members of Ashland's business and real estate community. John Pelton ran a meat business and served as Ashland's sheriff in 1892. Although the Peltons divorced in 1901, Charlotte lived in the house until her death in 1926. The two-story dwelling exhibits Stick style elements including wood frame construction, steeply pitched gabled roofs, a projecting bay, stickwork paneling, cut outs, sunbursts, and lattice trim as well as Eastlake details. The Pelton House is T-shaped with the parlor wing, the stem of the T, extending north toward B Street. By its size and distinction as an example of Eastlake architecture, the house is regarded as a pivotal building in the Railroad Addition Historic District. A one and one-half story rental house was also built south of the primary dwelling facing First Street.

W. J. Schmidt, the Pelton House builder, came to Ashland in 1880, and was responsible for the design and construction of many distinctive houses and public buildings, including Ashland City Hall (1891), the G. M. and Kate Grainger House (1890) and Trinity Episcopal Church (1895). In August 1991 the Pelton House was seriously damaged by fire, causing a concerted effort on the part of the community to save it from demolition. The Historic Commission, City Council, and B Street Neighborhood Association all were concerned and fortunately the house was completely restored.

The Pelton House is located at 228 B. Street. It is a private residence and is not open to the public.


Peerless Rooms Building

The Peerless Rooms Building was built in 1904 by Oscar and Lucinda Ganiard, who built many commercial buildings in Ashland, including the Ganiard Opera House. Long used for lodging in the railroad district (and known as "The Ganiard Building"), the vernacular "brick front" commercial style building is typical of the once prevalent rooming houses developed to serve the working-class men and women drawn to Ashland in the early years of the 20th century. It was during this time when such single-room occupancy was the norm for residents of a working-class community. Following the 1887 completion of a north-south rail link over the formidable Siskyiou Mountains to the south, the Southern Pacific Company and its employees assumed a major role in the Ashland economy. Since Ashland's primary business district was located along Ashland Creek, over a mile distant from the tracks, a second commercial area developed along Fourth Street in what became known as "the railroad district." Given the transitory nature of railroad employment, many of Southern Pacific's employees kept to themselves, avoiding the Ashland community at large. The large number of rooming houses in the Railroad District also provided low-cost housing for a number of young laborers, single women, and traveling salesmen who were drawn to Ashland by the booming economy that the railroad stimulated.

It was under the ownership of Sarah Meekly that the building received the name, "Peerless Rooms," in 1910. A significant element of the building is the sign painted on the brick proclaiming "Peerless Rooms" (probably dating from around 1915) with an early "Coca-Cola" advertisement. Long considered a "ghost" sign, it now has been restored. In late 1991 the Ganiard Building was purchased for restoration to its original use, although considerably upgraded from its working-class status. As "The Peerless Hotel" it is a luxury enterprise that strives to recreate the aura of a Victorian upper-class inn that now caters to Ashland's tourist population. The Peerless Rooms is the single best surviving example of the two-story brick storefront associated with the development of the commercial area centered on Ashland's railroad depot.

The Peerless Rooms Building, now the Peerless Hotel, is located at 243 Fourth Street. Call 1-800-460-8758 or visit for further information about the hotel.


Ashland Depot Hotel, South Wing

The South Wing of the Ashland Depot Hotel is all that remains of the original Southern Pacific Railroad's presence in the city. While Ashland's 20th-century revival can be attributed to the cultural renaissance brought by the highways that signaled the end of the railroad, the importance of the railroad in Ashland's history cannot be overemphasized. Ashland's late 19th-century prosperity depended upon its rail connections. The driving of the golden spike in 1887 in Ashland was responsible for the success of the local orchard and livestock industries, as well as milling and manufacturing. It also provided the impetus for a major event in Ashland's long involvement with formalized arts and cultural events when in 1892 a proposal was made to bring traveling lectures of the Chautauqua program to Ashland. Ashland's train access and established hotels and restaurants provided the city with a major advantage over its competitors in securing the series.

The south wing (originally the hotel's kitchen) was constructed as part of the entire Ashland Depot Hotel in October 1888. It is the sole 19th-century wood frame railroad building standing in Jackson County and perhaps the oldest surviving railroad building still standing in southern Oregon. A single story wood-frame building, the Ashland Depot's Queen Anne and vernacular Stick style decorative elements are similar to many of the stations that Southern Pacific built during the rapid expansion of the late 19th century. The days of Ashland's rail boom were numbered from the start because of the costs involved in the steep grade of the Siskiyou summit; this led to the railroad's decision to divert the main Shasta Route line through Klamath Falls in 1927. When the passenger hotel was torn down, elements were used to remodel the South Wing; so it still retains material from the 19th-century Chautauqua era.

The Ashland Depot Hotel, South Wing is located at 624 A St. and currently houses a computer software firm open to the public during normal business hours.


Nils Ahlstrom House

Nils Ahlstrom was born in 1829 in Sweden, and came to Ashland to be a conductor with the Southern Pacific Railroad. The home he built in 1888 was one of the first to be constructed after the rail line between Portland, Oregon, and northern California was completed in December of 1887, connecting Ashland to both of these regions. Located near the Ashland Depot, it is an excellent example of a late 19th-century railroad worker's home. The Ahlstrom family lived in the house until about 1920 when they deeded the property to one of their children. Once a large family, Nils Ahlstom and his wife buried five of their small children in Ashland Cemetery after a diphtheria epidemic. The Ahlstroms were later buried near their children.

The Ahlstrom House was constructed to house a large family. Although it is larger than many in the area, its simplicity of plan and decoration were typical of working class homes of this period. The two-story building is comprised of a large rectangular main block and short wing at the rear forming a T shape. The Ahlstrom House was built by John Fruhan, an Ashland workman of the period, and exhibits Classical Revival details, including decorative cornices above the windows and doorframes.

The Nils Ahlstrom House, located at 248 Fifth St., is a private residence and is not open to the public.


Ashland Cemetery

Prior to the founding of Ashland Cemetery, area families buried their dead on the gentle rises and knolls of individual farms. Like many other pioneer cemeteries, it began as a family burial ground on a donation land claim and expanded within distinct boundaries over the years. Burial dates in Ashland Cemetery range from 1860 (predating the official graveyard platting in 1880) to the present. Wooded and grassy in character, the cemetery is surrounded by the city on all sides, with an entrance arch on East Main Street. Grave markers are largely vertical and represent a wide range of styles, using Vermont and Italian marble as well as locally quarried marble and granite. The variety of monument types and embellishment is due in part to the skills of master carvers James and Ann Hill Russell, who worked in Ashland for more than 50 years (1865-1915).

Among significant Russell monuments are those marking the Thomas Smith, J. C. Tolman, Oscar and Linda Ganiard, and Wagner children's graves. Typical ornamentation of the period includes fraternal symbols, garlands and single flowers, egg-and-dart detail, and clasped hands. Noteworthy burials include those of Lindsay Applegate (one of the blazers of the Southern Emigrant Route to western Oregon) and Abel Helman, pioneer settler on whose land Ashland was developed. Ashland Cemetery retains its original character; the remaining trees substantially reflect the land's features at the time the cemetery was established and provide a rare enclave of native vegetation within the town boundaries. The cemetery provides a link between the early settlers and the period of development that occurred following the railroad's arrival in 1884.

Ashland Cemetery, located on 750 East Main St., is open to the public during daylight hours.


George Taverner House

The George Taverner House is located on Siskiyou Boulevard where Ashland's elite built fine homes of distinction in the early 1900s. Architect Frank Chamberlain Clark designed the house in 1904, and lived there for a short time after it was completed. Clark was Southern Oregon's leading, and perhaps only professionally trained, architect of the early 20th century. He was the student of a New Jersey architect named Dayone, from whom he learned to combine colonial architecture with classical detail. Clark came to Ashland in 1902 to work on a project; impressed with the beauty of the area he settled here and accomplished a significant body of work in the Rogue Valley. The design of the Taverner House displays the architect's mastery of various styles of architecture, woven into a stately composition featuring columns with Corinthian capitals on both sides of the staircase entrance. A distinctive feature of the house is its large round bay, or turrent, with a conical roof and overhanging eaves.

George Taverner, who bought the house in 1907 from Clark, was a member of the planning committee for Lithia Park when it was formed in 1909 and also served as president of the Park Board. Taverner worked with John McLaren, the landscape architect (also responsible for the design of San Francisco's Golden Gate Park) up until the year of the mammoth celebration of Lithia Park's completion in 1916. Today, the house is still a Taverner family residence.

The George Taverner House is located at 912 Siskiyou Blvd. It is a private residence not open to the public.


Chappell-Swedenburg House

The Chappell-Swedenburg House was constructed in 1904 to 1905 as a private residence for stockbroker Charles Chappell and his family. Chappell had served as a city councilman for only a short time when he died suddenly in 1905. His widow and young daughters lived in the house until 1919. At that time it was purchased by a leading Ashland physician, Francis C. Swedenburg, and his wife. The family occupied the property until 1966.

The Chappell-Swedenburg House was designed by architect Frank Chamberlain Clark shortly after his arrival in the Rogue River Valley in 1902. Born in Green, New York, in 1872, Clark's prolific output encompassed some 250 projects throughout the Rogue Valley, including at least 78 residences ranging in style from the Queen Anne and Colonial Bungalow, to Arts and Crafts and Prairie Style. The Chappell-Swedenburg House displays a high quality of craftsmanship and detail throughout, including columns and pilasters of the Greek Ionic order used in the portico, the upper story fašade, and in the entry stairhall.

This formal residence in Colonial Revival style was placed in a prominent location along Siskiyou Boulevard, Ashland's important new thoroughfare. The foremost formal residence in Ashland at the time of its construction, the house retains its historic exterior architectural integrity and interior detail. It was long an Ashland cultural and social center where frequent gracious and lavish entertaining drew Ashland citizens. The house has continued such associations. After it was purchased by Oregon's State Higher Education Board; it became associated with the campus of Southern Oregon University and its educational mission. From 1975 to 1980 the house served as the Oregon Shakespeare Festival's exhibit center of historical memorabilia. Later it housed the Southern Oregon Historical Society's Cultural Resource Center. Today it is used by the University for the Foundation and Alumni Office and for receptions.

The Chappell-Swedenburg House is located on the Southern Oregon University campus at 990 Siskiyou Blvd. The house is open to the public during University and Alumni receptions. Call 541-552-7672 for further information.


John P. Walker House

The John Walker House reflects Ashland's early agricultural history, and is one of the oldest residences in the Rogue River basin. John Walker came to the valley in 1853 from the California mining fields. This Applegate Trail pioneer became a rancher and advocate of public education. His career illustrates both the farm-based economy of Ashland's early years and its continued commitment to education. He built his imposing home in 1856 (the date of newspapers found beneath the original wallpaper). The following year Walker was selected as director of the local school board and under his direction school taxes were levied for the first time; for many years, based on the extent of his holdings, Walker had a higher assessment than anyone else. An elementary school and one of Ashland's main streets are named for him. In 1884 the home was described as "among the most valuable and best improved farms in Southern Oregon."

Walker lived in his home with his wife Mary and their four children. The two-story clapboard frame house with an essentially square plan rests on a foundation of locally quarried sandstone. The original half root cellar is intact. With its brick floor and walls of cut sandstone, the cellar is cooled by spring water drained off by a sump. Today the property retains its bucolic sense with the small herd of cattle still grazing near the house.

The John Walker House is located at 1521 E. Main St. It is a private residence not open to the public.


Mountain View Cemetery

Mountain View Cemetery was established by the City of Ashland as an area of 10 acres in the city's southeasterly outskirts in 1904. The cemetery is planted with grass, and mature trees (both native and introduced specimens) provide a relatively dense canopy over much of the burial ground. Headstones placed before 1910 exhibit the same characteristics as those in Ashland and Hargadine cemeteries, while the majority placed between 1910 and 1925 are less elaborate, with a variety of rough-cut or polished granite headstones having flat and beveled tops. Ornamentation is simpler--primarily incised floral designs and fraternal symbols. The Ashland Memorial Mausoleum is located in the portion of the cemetery located south of Highway 66. The Egyptian style building was constructed in 1924 on land purchased from the Ashland IOOF Lodge #45. Its interior includes a chapel, vestibule, and wings that project from the center; a large stained glass window in the chapel is the work of the Povey Brothers Company of Portland. Among those buried in the mausoleum are J. P. Dodge, Alice Applegate Peil and Emil Peil, and Henry G. Enders.

This cemetery represents the city's effort to accommodate the community's need for burial ground following explosive growth between 1880 and 1910, an expansive period ushered in by the completion of the last link of the Oregon and California Railroad route between Sacramento and Portland. It is significant as the town's only example of a historic garden cemetery laid out and landscaped in tune with the garden and lawn cemetery movement which originated in Boston, New York, Philadelphia and leading centers of the upper Midwest in the 19th century. While Mountain View cemetery contains the last remains of pioneer settlers, its date of establishment and the fact that it was fashionable made it the last resting place of leaders of Ashland's great period of building after the railroad link was established in 1887. Mountain View Cemetery is an example of an early 20th-century cemetery associated with citizens of that period and provides a link between Ashland's initial settlement and post-World War II development. Additional land for the cemetery was acquired in 1904, 1921, 1922 and 1932 to comprise a total of approximately 17 acres.

Mountain View Cemetery, 440 Normal Ave., is open to the public; guided tours of the Mausoleum can be arranged when the cemetery office is open Monday-Friday 8:00am to 4:30pm. Call 541-482-3826 for further information.


Ashland Municipal Powerhouse

A Bungalow style building, the oldest municipal powerhouse in Oregon was built in 1909 and represents the long struggle between the city and a private power company to control hydroelectric power service to the community. In 1889, two years after railroads joined north and south rails, Ashland became the first Jackson County town to have electric power. It also pioneered in power production by building the Ashland Municipal Powerhouse. At first, power was provided by a private company. Then in 1908, the city council engaged Portland engineer Frank C. Kelsey to survey Ashland Canyon to estimate its power capacity and work was begun, but not without controversy because the private operator brought an injunction suit against the city to halt construction.

Several years of struggle between municipal and private sources ensued, with the city continuing to buy California electricity. A second phase of development in the canyon began in 1928 when Hosler Dam was constructed about 4000 feet upstream and Reeder Reservoir, a new water impoundment facility, also was built. Power generation was suspended for three years in 1968, but before scrapping the project, studies on restoring the plant indicated its feasibility; restoration was completed in 1985. Ashland is now one of two cities in Oregon that generates its own power. Standing on its original site, the powerhouse is significant as tangible evidence of the relentless effort of Ashland's city government to eliminate its major competitor and control power generation and distribution.

The Ashland Municipal Powerhouse, located at 1400 Granite St. (Ashland Canyon), is not open to the public.


Learn More

By clicking on one of these links, you can go directly to a particular section:

Bibliography of Ashland, Oregon
Ashland, Oregon Children's Literature
Links to Oregon Tourism and Preservation
Links to Historic Places Featured in this Itinerary

Bibliography of Ashland, Oregon

Ambrose, Stephen E. Nothing Like It In The World: The Men Who Built The Transcontinental Railroad, 1863-1869. New York: Simon & Schuster, 2000.

Atwood, Kay. Mill Creek Journal: Ashland, Oregon, 1850-1860. Ashland, OR: Kay Atwood, 1987.

Brubaker, Edward. Golden Fire: The Anniversary Book of the Oregon Shakespearean Festival. Ashland, OR: Oregon Shakespearean Festival Association, 1985.

Davidson, Janelle. Ashland, An Oregon Oasis: An Oregon Documentary. Medford, OR: Webb Research Group Publishers, 1995.

Fanselow, Julie. Traveling the Oregon Trail (Traveler's Guide to the Oregon Trail). Helena, MT: Falcon Press Pub., 1997.

Lundin, Jane. All About Ashland: A Guide to the Oregon Shakespearean Festival and Southern Oregon. Berkeley, CA: Ten Speed Press, 1988.

O'Harra, Marjorie. Ashland, The First 130 Years. Ashland, OR: Northwest Passages Publishing Company,1986.

Solomon, Brian. Southern Pacific Railroad (Railroad Color History). Motorbooks International, 1999.

Strom, Ora. Ashland Cemeteries. Medford, OR: Rogue Valley Genealogical Society, 1990.

Webber, Bert & Margie. Railroading in Southern Oregon and The Founding of Medford. Fairfield, WA: Galleon Press, 1985.

Ashland, Oregon Children's Books

Isaacs, Sally Senzell. Life On The Oregon Trail. Chicago: Heinemann Library, 2001.

Nesbit, Edith. Best of Shakespeare, The. New York: Oxford University Press, 1997.

Steedman, Scott. A Frontier Fort On The Oregon Trail. New York: P. Bedrick Books, 1993.

Thompson, Kathleen. Oregon (Portrait of America, Revised Edition). Milwaukee, WI: Raintree Publishers, 1985.

Links to Oregon Tourism and Preservation

City of Ashland
The city's official website offers information about the city, its government, advisory boards (including the Historic Commission), news, weather, and links to other community websites.

Ashland Chamber of Commerce
A comprehensive website covering Ashland from its rich past to its cutting-edge present, including cultural and recreational attractions.

Oregon Shakespeare Festival
The Festival website presents current and comprehensive information about the plays, the company, educational programs, membership and news to enhance the playgoers' experience in Ashland.

A Taste of Ashland
The non-profit Ashland Gallery Association hosts this annual event, many of the galleries are located in Ashland's historic buildings.

Oregon State Historic Preservation Office
Assists the people of Oregon in identifying, studying, evaluating, preserving, protecting, and interpreting the state's significant historic resources.

Oregon Tourism Commission
The state's official website for tourism offers information on lodging and reservations, activities, a calendar of events, and the ability to plan a vacation. The site divides the state into six regions to highlight local communities and attractions .

Southern Oregon Historical Society
The Southern Oregon Historical Society's website is a resource for up-to-date information about educational and entertaining programs, sites and exhibits and the society's other services, including a research library, publications and community outreach.

Crater Lake National Park
This national park offers activities and lodging detailed on its website. Also listed are hours, directions, fees and a detailed history of Crater Lake.

Rogue River-Siskiyou National Forest
Situated in the Siskiyou and Cascade mountain ranges, this national forest's website provides information on Rogue River's natural resources, forest planning and recreational activities, including hiking trails.

Oregon Caves National Monument
Located in Cave Junction, OR, this national park features three hiking trails through the forest above ground and an active marble cave below. The website lists hours, fees, facilities and directions.

Shakespeare Festivals in US
The Institute of Outdoor Drama at the University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill maintains this comprehensive list of Shakespeare festivals held nationwide.

National Trust for Historic Preservation
Learn about the programs of and membership in the oldest national non-profit preservation organization.

National Park Service Office of Tourism
National parks have been interwoven with tourism from their earliest days. This website highlights the ways in which the NPS promotes and supports sustainable, responsible, informed, and managed visitor use through cooperation and coordination with the tourism industry.

National Scenic Byways Program
This website, maintained by the U.S. Department of Transportation, Federal Highway Administration, includes information on state and nationally designated byway routes throughout America based on their archeological, cultural, historic, natural, recreational, and scenic qualities. Visit the America’s Byways Myrtle Creek-Canyonville Tour Route website for more ideas.

Links to Historic Places Featured in this Itinerary

  • Mark Antony Motor Hotel (Ashland Springs Hotel):
  • Enders Building:
  • Trinity Episcopal Church
  • Fordyce Roper House (Winchester Country Inn):
  • John McCall House:
  • Peerless Rooms Building:
  • First Baptist Church:
  • Orlando Coolidge House:



Ashland, Oregon: From Stage Coach to Center Stage, was produced by the National Park Service (NPS), U.S. Department of the Interior, in cooperation with the Historic Commission of the City of Ashland, the Oregon State Historic Preservation Office, the National Conference of State Historic Preservation Officers (NCSHPO), and the National Alliance of Preservation Commissions (NAPC). It was created under the direction of Carol D. Shull, Keeper of the National Register of Historic Places, National Park Service, Patrick Andrus, Heritage Tourism Director, and Beth L. Savage, Publications Director. Ashland, Oregon: From Stage Coach to Center Stage is based on information in the files of the National Register of Historic Places and National Historic Landmarks collections. These materials are kept at 800 North Capitol St., Washington, D.C., and are open to the public from 8:00am to 12:00pm and 1:00pm to 4:00pm, Monday through Friday.

The City of Ashland's Planning Department and Historic Commission conceptualized and compiled all photographic and written materials for the itinerary, especially guided by Mark Knox and Joan Steele. National Register web production team members Jeff Joeckel and Rustin Quaide (both of NCSHPO) designed the itinerary, while Shannon Bell (also of NCSHPO) designed maps and coordinated project production. Yen M. Tang (National Council for Preservation Education) assisted with photographic and web compilation. Special thanks to Terry Skibby who provided invaluable historic and color photographs.

[graphic] link to Applegate Trail Settlement essay
 [graphic] Link to Applegate Trail Settlement essay
[graphic] footer [graphic] Link to All the World's a Stage essay
 [graphic] link to Ashland's Golden Spike essay

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