The Infamous Black Bird Southern Oregon History, Revised

Rogue Valley Childhoods

Noel, Dale and Gordon on South Grape circa 1925.

    THE BOY.--A writer in one of the papers describes a real boy thus:
    "He is the spirit of mischief embodied, a perfect teetotum, spinning round like a jenny, or tumbling heels over head. He must go through the process of leaping over every chair in reach, making drumheads on the doors, turns the tin pans into cymbals, takes the best knives out to dig worms for bait, and loses them--is boon companion of the sugar barrel, searches up all the pie and preserves left after supper, and eats them, goes to the apples every ten minutes, hides his old cap in order to get his best one, cuts his boots accidentally if he wants a new pair, tears clothes for fun, and for ditto tracks your carpet and cuts your furniture. He is romping, shouting, blustering, and in all but his estate a terrible torment, especially to his sisters. He does not pretend much until he is twelve, then the rage for frock coats and high dickies commences. At fourteen he is too large to split wood, or do other chores. At fifteen he has a tolerable experience of the world--but from fifteen to twenty, may we be clear from the track when he is in sight; he knows more than Washington and Franklin together; in other words, he knows more then than he will ever know again."
Oregonian, Portland, August 7, 1852, page 4

True Ambition.
    Without a disposition on the part of mankind to excel in every variety of calling through life, there could be no perceptible progress made in any direction whatever. It is one of the most valuable traits that can be implanted in the young to have them thirst for renown. When bright visions of the future are constantly held up to the view, and are ever beckoning them onward to a career of honor, of usefulness, and of profit, there is little danger but that the youth who is thus actuated will act uprightly in all his doings. But when we see a young man who has, apparently, no object to attain, nothing to bind him to a life of integrity, and who wastes his springtime in copying the worst faults of his seniors, we cannot help but feel our confidence in the moral and intellectual progress of our race depreciated.
    Southern Oregon has too many thoughtless, unaspiring young men, and not enough of those who really desire to be somebody, those who should strive to "tread with unflagging footsteps the lofty heights of intellectuality." A majority of our youth are disposed to limit their ambition to the equestrian proficiency of riding a bucking cayuse, or to winning a reputation among their "chums" for sharp practice and grotesque achievements. The community itself has been greatly at fault heretofore in not affording better facilities for educating them, and for bringing them up in the manner they should be, but we hope to see an important change in the future. We want the native genius of this section amply developed. Let boys, as they grow up, be imbued with the idea of making for themselves reputations that will redound to the honor of their family names, and they may thus become suitable custodians to take charge of the affairs of state. What we mean by ambition is not the sordid desire for merely gaining office and political preferment. These are the worst enemies to individual greatness. They constitute a very precarious test of worth at best, and are too apt to lure an individual on to the sacrifice of his own independence and sense of right. The practical education of the mind, and the cultivation of a generous and magnanimous heart, are the only sure means by which a man can elevate himself in the eyes of a sensible people. Almost every person--whether educated or uneducated, whether generous and magnanimous or not--knows how to discriminate between actual and nominal merit, and history seldom lays claim to anything but what has belonged to inherent greatness.
Southern Oregon Press, Jacksonville, June 8, 1867, page 2

    NEARLY A FIRE.--Yesterday afternoon some children, playing with matches, inserted a piece of lighted paper under the iron doors of Muller & Brentano's warehouse, on Oregon St., and set fire to a pile of brooms inside. Fortunately, the oldest of the children
gave the alarm, and the fire was easily quenched. Messrs. M. & B. had a quantity of powder in the building, and had the fire made a little headway, no human efforts would have saved the town. Moral--never allow children to play with matches.
Oregon Sentinel, Jacksonville, August 10, 1867, page 2

    YOUNG RUNAWAYS.--On Monday last three young hopefuls, whose parents reside near Willow Springs, concluded to try the experiment of running away. They concluded to try their luck in California and started on foot, bright and early. By the time they had climbed to the Toll House, they were tolerably sick of their job and readily surrendered at discretion to the operator at that place, who had been telegraphed to stop them. Their captor, finding that they only wanted a good excuse to go home, soon released them, and started them down the mountain again rejoicing.

Oregon Sentinel, Jacksonville, November 23, 1867, page 2

    TOYS.--Mr. I. Caro has a fine lot of Christmas toys at his store, on corner of California and Oregon streets. one may see horns, whistles, swords, guns, toy wagons, horses, dogs, cats, elephants, tigers, dolls, miniature stoves, parlor sets, dishes, and all the playthings that are calculated to please the juveniles.
Oregon Sentinel, Jacksonville, December 14, 1867, page 3

    JUVENILE BEGGARS.--Christmas is at hand--and we trust that when the day does come, parents will not allow their children to rush up and down the streets in troops, importuning everyone--acquaintances and stranger alike--for "Christmas gifts." If there is anything that makes childhood lovely and endearing, it is childhood's modesty and innocence; and a bashful, modest child is always the most thought of. We have seen children of respectable parents in this town begging for "gifts" with an amount of impudence that would shame a professional beggar, and for their own sakes hope never to see it again.
Oregon Sentinel, Jacksonville, December 14, 1867, page 3

    BAD BOYS.--There is a company of about a dozen boys in this town that always make it a point to attend all public gatherings except church, where they lose no opportunity of making a noise and a disturbance. They use the lowest obscenity and most disgusting profanity, and that, too, in the presence of ladies; nor can anybody rebuke them without being insulted. We have been requested to name these young fellows--a thing that will be done if we ever have to recur to this subject again, for forbearance has ceased to be a virtue.
Oregon Sentinel, Jacksonville, June 27, 1868, page 2

    STRING GAME.--Five or six boys who range along California Street, as far down as "5th," have hit upon a new method of annoying the public. They tie cords across the sidewalk, a distance from the ground, so that one's face catches the whole force of the plot. One evening this week we found no less than three of these cords stretched across the sidewalk. A few evenings since a lady and gentleman found one across the way and were severely hurt thereby.
Oregon Sentinel, Jacksonville, July 18, 1868, page 3

Advice to Young Mothers.
    When a child is born, have it carefully wrapped in flannel, put to bed and covered with three and a half feet of woolen blankets. The warmth will either nourish it into a healthy child or kill it--it matters little which.
    Always contrive to have its clothes as full of pins as possible. This will injure it to pain and cultivate fortitude.
    Never, under any circumstances, say that it is the perfect picture of its father, for it is by no means an original remark, and has sometimes been disbelieved.
    There are no objections of having the baby exhibited to your lady friends when they call. They have sometimes been known to ask to see it. All they say about it you can rely upon as strictly true.
    If your husband should insist on taking the dear infant from your arms while you are kneading the bread, cry. This will prove him to be a brute, and vindicate your good taste for marrying him.
    Always take the baby to church when it is teething; it will keep people from sleeping during service.
    Whenever you bathe it or strip it for bed, take it by both hands, throw back your shoulders and make it walk gracefully on your chest. This should never be omitted, as it strengthens baby's arms and looks pretty.
    Teach baby to suck its thumb. It will add a new and refined pleasure to its existence, and a grace and vivacity to its expression. The habit is supposed to be indicative of budding intellect, and is useful in keeping it quiet when you don't wish to feed it. A well-regulated baby will suck its thumb for weeks and require no other sustenance.
    Never omit to say "Dod bless it" when baby sneezes. The happiness of its entire existence depends upon an unswerving adherence to this custom. Never talk "baby talk" to it; the custom is obsolete and strongly condemned by all mothers and little girls. To call a baby a "pitty-itty poozle-um-pip" and extend to it an invitation to "tum to its doody-oody muzzery-mum" is enough to stamp you as a person destitute of every maternal attribute, and place you entirely outside the pale of good society. Hence it is never done.--Figaro.
Oregon Sentinel, Jacksonville, February 13, 1869, page 4

    SCHOOL AT HOME.--Few persons realize how much may be done in a thousand pleasant ways at home. Let a parent make a companion of his child, converse with him familiarly, put to him questions, answer inquiries, communicate facts, the result of his reading or observation, to awaken his curiosity, explain difficulties, the meaning of things, and all this in an easy, playful manner, without seeming to impose a task, and he himself will be astonished at the progress which will be made. The experiment is so simple that none need hesitate about its performance. The first important requisite is that there be mutual confidence between the parent and child; in every season and in every place there may be such lessons and recitations as will benefit both; imparting new facts and principles to one, and elucidating new views, and giving them new force to the other. If at the barn, the boy may be required to give the principle of raising water by the pump, or some other question in hydraulics; if teaming, or plowing, why the work is performed easier when the team is near the load than farther removed; if in the morning when grass is sparkling in pearly drops, how dew is deposited; or, if in the silent and impressive evening hour, why is he chilled in passing the valley, and finds again the genial warmth on ascending a hill. When around the fireside, daughters may state the principle on which smoke ascends the chimney, and why the air is warmest at the top of the room. At another time why the pitcher sweats in the hot noon, or the "dough rises" in the pan. By thus observing events as they pass, we are always at school; both old and young, teachers and pupils in turn. A new enthusiasm is kindled in the breast of each other, while new desires for improvement are awakened, and new sources for it are developed at each recitation.--Golden Era.
Oregon Sentinel, Jacksonville, April 10, 1869, page 4

That "Godly" School.
    If the teacher of the "godly" school in this place would have the public believe in the efficacy of his system, he should pay some attention to the deportment of his scholars while in their play ground. The profanity and obscenity of that school during recess is becoming a subject of general complaint, and even the presence of ladies passing along the sidewalk is no check. At the risk of being considered a heretic we would respectfully request less doctrine and more decency, as it strikes us that faith and the catechism are not very efficacious to correct juvenile depravity and blackguardism.
Oregon Sentinel, Jacksonville, April 24, 1869, page 2

    AFTER THE BOYS.--Complaints against a certain gang of boys in this town are so frequent that the city fathers intend to pass a juvenile vagrant law. It is a matter of regret that such action is absolutely necessary, and we should think it was rather humiliating to parents who fail to exercise the proper control over their children. It is better, however, if parents will not keep their children from roaming the streets at night, that the authorities should take steps to control them, and thus save them from the penitentiary or perhaps worse. We hope the boys will so conduct themselves in future that an ordinance for their special benefit will be unnecessary, and it would be well for neglectful parents to take the hint, also, and remember that "an ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure."
Oregon Sentinel, Jacksonville, April 24, 1869, page 2

    A gentleman in the streets of C------, Iowa, lately counted, in fifteen minutes, seventy ladies chewing gum. This habit prevails extensively--especially in the West. Almost every school girl you meet is chewing, chewing, chewing.
    Of course, it will not be pretended that this habit is either as injurious or as nasty as chewing tobacco, yet it is not altogether innocent.
    When food is taken, saliva is secreted to aid in masticating it. When other substances are chewed, saliva is, at first, secreted as for food; but the vital instincts soon recognizing the nature of the substance, excrete a fluid similar to saliva for the defense of the tissues. This fluid (thrown out against tobacco, gum, etc.) is really an excretion.
The bile occasioned by taking poisonous medicines has, by careful experiment and analysis, been found to be quite a different substance from that secreted by the liver in its healthy action. So the fluid which the salivary glands produce during protracted chewing of that which is not food is quite different from healthy saliva. The waste, however, is probably just as great as if it were healthy saliva. Those who habitually chew gum unduly exercise the salivary glands, thus wasting vital force and injuring the glands, occasioning in them either ultimate debility or undue development in size. There is also danger of permanent depreciation and poisoning of the salivary glands.
    This constant chewing also injures the teeth. The teeth are no small item in a lady's beauty; and as they go to such rapid decay in America, demanding so early the dentist's care, it is surprising that ambitious young ladies should so wantonly destroy them. Boys often ruin their teeth by cracking nuts; they do it to get at the kernel--they have a motive--but what possible motive can boys, girls or women have for chewing, chewing, chewing, hour after hour, an insipid lump of gum?
    The habit also diverts attention from duty or study, and is one of the many familiar modern modes of killing time. In short, it is a useless, indecent, unhealthful practice. Boys and girls, let it alone!
Democratic Times,
Jacksonville, December 16, 1871, page 1

    Y.M.C.A.--The young men of Jacksonville, disdaining the opprobrious title of "hoodlums," maliciously conferred upon them, have formed themselves into a society called the Young Men's Christian Association, with the intention of holding social parties now and then. None but those of known respectability and good character are admitted, and their parties will be of the most refined kind.

Democratic Times, Jacksonville, December 7, 1872, page 3

Thoughtless Boys.
    It has become quite an annoying and dangerous habit of the boys playing in the streets of this place to throw stones and mud at each other, and at houses, and the more venturesome and impudent do not hesitate at times, particularly when sure of escape, to cast their missiles at older persons who may chance to offer a mark. Their peculiar delight, in some cases at least, is to thus annoy the Chinese. As we have said, the practice is both annoying and dangerous, and when indulged in after proper caution, should be checked by more vigorous means. We saw some lads engaged in this business a few days ago, on the outer edge of town, while on their way home from school, with malicious motive, when an unoffending and non-resisting youngster was struck on the head with a stone, knocking him flat to the ground; and we are informed that it was several days before he fully recovered his reason. One of the main annoyances is the breaking of windows by throwing small lumps of stiff mud with a limber switch--as frequently the result of design as accident. Parents are too apt to think that their boys cannot be guilty of such actions, and as they are not permitted to witness all their boys may do, are frequently induced to look upon a person as over-fearful, or even presumptive, who may bring the subject to their attention. But human nature is pretty much the same here as elsewhere, and boys will be boys and second an example without thinking of results. The practice alluded to should be abolished, even if it require compulsion from those who may chance to be the aggrieved.
Oregon Sentinel, Jacksonville, November 21, 1874, page 3

By Fred Lockley
    R. L. Farmer, or, to give him the name by which he was christened, Ray Lee Farmer, is one of Salem's pioneer merchants. He was born at Marietta, Ohio, on August 31, 1859.
    "We left Marietta, Ohio, for New York when I was a few months old," said Mr. Farmer. "We went to San Francisco by way of the Isthmus of Panama. At San Francisco we took a stage for Yreka, where my father followed his trade as a tailor. My father died when I was 5 years old. In the fall of 1865 my mother with my brother and myself went to Jacksonville. Here is a picture made in 1867 by Peter Britt in Jacksonville of my brother Edward Lawrence Farmer and myself. My mother earned our living by doing sewing and keeping roomers and boarders. D. P. Thompson used to room at our house in Jacksonville. We lived in Jacksonville from 1865 till 1878.
    "Among my schoolmates were Ben, Carrie and Lydia Beekman. We went to school to Professor Merritt. I sat with Ben Beekman. Ben was good at arithmetic. I always had a good grade in arithmetic because I copied my lesson from Ben's work.
    "When I was a boy in school the discipline was rather strict. We were not allowed to whisper, and of course passing notes was taboo. Ella Prim, the daughter of Judge P. P. Prim, and myself were sweet on each other so we wrote notes to each other. I had a cigar box in my desk nearly full of notes she had written me. She had also saved my notes. One day Professor Merritt saw a note being passed to me, so he said, "Raymond, bring up that note and any others you have." I would rather have been shot than take those notes up to his desk, but I had to do it. He had me stand there with my face as red as a beet while he read these notes out loud to the school. When he had finished reading Ella's notes to me he told her to bring up any love letters she had from me and he read them to the pupils. I had many a fight during the next week or 10 days with boys who addressed me as "My darling Raymond." I couldn't lick the girls who called me "Sweetheart" or "Dear Raymond," or who quoted from my letters to Ella, but I certainly ran a temperature for the next week or two.
    "One day Mother sent me to the stove to get something for dinner. I saw a little girl, the daughter of a widow, a neighbor of ours, lighting papers and poking them under the door of a vacant building. I was afraid she would set fire to the building, so I told the storekeeper, who called the fire department. When they broke the door in, a fire had been started. The little girl had skipped out, so they assumed I had been doing it and had got scared and reported it. They gave me "Hail Columbia" [i.e., hell] and wouldn't believe I hadn't done it. Right then and there I resolved that thereafter I would attend to my own business.
    "Fred Cronemiller and I were great chums at Jacksonville. In those days the boys were always going out in Jacksonville prospecting or pocket hunting, for placer mining had been the great industry in Jacksonville. Fred and I went to the gulch. We rigged up a short sluicebox just below where an old German miner was ground sluicing. We went up the gulch to where he had the water impounded in a reservoir and pulled out the headgate to see the water race down the gulch. That old Dutchman was certainly mad. Fred and I cleaned up the riffles in our sluicebox that night, took the gold to C. C Beekman, the banker, who weighed it and said, "You have six dollars' worth of gold." In those days there was very little currency, most of the money in circulation being gold or silver. Mr. Beekman had the smaller gold money, like one-dollar gold pieces, two-and-a-half gold pieces, and three-dollar gold pieces, in a separate division in his till, so he hunted around and found two three-dollar gold pieces and gave Fred and me a three-dollar piece each for our gold dust.
    "The last night I spent in Jacksonville was spent at a party with Fannie Dowell and Maggie and Cora Linn.
    "I arrived at Salem on Thanksgiving Day, 1878. I landed a job working in a plumbing shop owned by J. W. Crawford and Luther Myers. I was paid a dollar a week for the first year, $2 a week for the next year, and $3 a week for the third year. I went to work for the R. M. Wade Hardware Company on May 7, 1883, and have been in business on this corner for over 30 years."
Oregon Journal, Portland, December 4, 1933, page 6

    STOP THAT BOY.--A cigar in his mouth, a swagger in his walk, impudence in his face, a care for nothingness in his manner. Judging from his demeanor, he is older than his father, wiser than his teacher, more honored than the mayor of the town, higher than the President. Stop him; he's going too fast. He don't see himself as others see him. He don't know his speed. Stop him ere tobacco shatters his nerves, ere pride ruin his character, ere the loafer master the man, ere good ambition and manly strength give way to low pursuits and brutish aims. Stop all such boys! They are legion, the shame of their families, the disgrace of their town, the sad and solemn reproaches of themselves.
Oregon Sentinel, Jacksonville, April 18, 1877, page 4

    There are four or five different kinds of babies. There is the big baby, the little baby, the white baby and the poodle dog--and there is the baby elephant.
    Most of these babies was born in a boarding house, 'cept the baby elephant; I think he was born on a railroad train, 'cause he allus carries his trunk with him.
    A white baby is pootier nor a elephant baby, but he can't eat so much hay.
    All babies what I have ever seen were born very young, 'specially the gal babies, and they can't none of them talk the United States language.
    My father had--I mean my mother had a baby once. It was not an elephant baby; it was a little white baby; it comed one day when there was nobody home; it was a funny-looking fellow, just like a lobster.
    I asked my father was it a boy or a girl, and he said he don't know whether he was a father or a mother.
    This little baby has got two legs like a monkey.
    His name is Mariah.
    He didn't look like my father nor my mother, but he looks just like my uncle Tom 'cause the little thing ain't got no hair on its head.
    One day I asked my uncle Tom what was the reason he ain't got no hair. He say he don't know, 'cept the little baby was born so, and he was a married man.
    One day I pulled a feather out of the old rooster's tail and I stuck it up the baby's nose and tickled him so he almost died. It was only a little bit of a feather, and I didn't see what he wanted to make such a fuss about it for. My mother said I oughter be ashamed of myself and I didn't get no bread on my butter for more'n a week.
    One day the Sheriff come in the house for to collect a bill of nine dollars for crockery. My father say he "can't pay the bill" and the Sheriff he say, "Then I take something," and he looked around the room and seed the little baby and he say, "Ah, ah! I take this," an' he picked up the little baby and he wrapped him up in a newspaper and he takes him away to the station house.
    Then my mother she commenced to cry, an' my father say, "Hush, Mary Ann, that was all right. Don't you see how we fooled that fellow. Don't you see the bill for crockery was for nine dollars, and the little baby was only worth two and a half."
    I think I'd rather be a girl nor a boy 'cause when a girl gets a whipping she gets it on her fingers, but when a boy gets a licking he gets it all over.
    I don't like babies very much anyhow, 'cause they make so much noise. I never knew but one quiet baby, and he died.   
Democratic Times, Jacksonville, August 3, 1877, page 1

    A number of boys ranging in age from 10 to 16 years were in a state of helpless intoxication on the streets of Jacksonville on Sunday. Yet we have a law against furnishing minors with liquor.
"News Items," The New Northwest, Portland, December 5, 1878, page 2

    The city fathers of Ashland are about to prohibit the appearance of boys on the streets after 7 o'clock.
"News Items," The New Northwest, Portland, December 26, 1878, page 2


    From time to time the services of the Methodist church have been disturbed by a number of ill-bred boys and girls, some of them nearly grown. We have tried gentleness with you until it is apparent that kindness to you demands some sterner measures. Those who are lacking in common decency as not to be able to behave properly should be compelled to. We now give notice that we shall proceed to the full extent of the law against those who either in the church, or on the outside, create a disturbance during the time of religious services. Parents will do well to look to their children. Young hoodlums of both sexes will do well to [omission] themselves.
B. J. SHARP, Pastor.
A. S. JOHNSON, Trustee.
Jacksonville, Oct. 22, 1883.
Oregon Sentinel, Jacksonville, October 27, 1883, page 3

    ENTERPRISING.--Getting short of brick for his new building this week, Pat Ryan offered several street gamins a cent apiece for each brick they would bring him, at the same time telling the boys to pick up any and all brick they could find around town. After prospecting around a little the youths struck a bonanza in the shape of a big brick pile in the back yard of one of Mr. Ryan's other houses. The work of delivering was commenced at once, the boys receiving their pay as each load was delivered, when finally Pat smelled a mouse and investigation showed that he had been buying his own brick. The contract was canceled at once.
Oregon Sentinel, Jacksonville, November 22, 1884, page 3

    Boys, stay at home and study your lessons in the evening. Nothing but misery will be the outgrowth of idleness and night carousals.
"Brevities," Medford Monitor, February 20, 1885, page 4

    Some of the little boys in town have been having lots of fun with a steam engine of their own manufacture, in which an old oil can figured as the boiler, and a homemade steam whistle furnished the requisite amount of noise. A day or two ago Bobby Rea, who was officiating as fireman, "crowded the machine" too much, and she burst her boiler, scalding the little fellow seriously about the legs and abdomen. He was badly burned and will not be able to run about again for some time.
"Brevities," Ashland Tidings, October 2, 1885, page 3

    Says the Adams, Umatilla Co. Times: "A juvenile hanging has occurred in town on Friday last: Several little 'kids' assembled to lynch little Charley Springler, hung him to a beam and were gyrating gleefully around their victim as he swung, black in the face and ready to climb the shining steps, when Mr. I. Hanson, who fortunately had business there at the moment, frustrated the tragedy. It seemed impossible for the lynching spirit to disgrace itself, but it did catch an extra shade of infamy that time. When children begin lynching it is time for men to stop. The boys, however, had no intention to kill their companion, being too young to see the serious nature of the thing."

"Here and There,"
Ashland Tidings, May 14, 1886, page 3

    Quite a number of the boys of this place are in the habit of running in the street and hanging on behind wagons passing by. It is very dangerous sport to say the least, and some of them will no doubt get severely hurt if they do not stop it.
"Medford Items," Ashland Tidings, June 1, 1888, page 3

    Says the Jacksonville Times of last Thursday: Complaint was made before the town authorities by several parties yesterday, calling attention to the danger of fire arising from the custom of sending up toy balloons after night, which is now in vogue among the boys. On Tuesday evening two fires were started by burning balloons descending--one in J. A. Cardwell's field, which burned about 40 feet square in the stubble before it was extinguished, and the other in the stable lot or corral adjoining J. A. Wilson's barn near the courthouse. At this time when everything is as dry as tinder it behooves everyone to be extremely careful not to take unnecessary chances.

"Here and There," Ashland Tidings, June 28, 1889, page 3

    There are a lot of boys in Medford who are armed with an instrument which they manufacture with a forked stick and a rubber strap, with which they shoot out window lights, fire into unprotected dogs and in various other semi-harmless ways amuse themselves at other people's expense.
    The Mail would like to see their parents have to pay for property destroyed, and they might in this way be gently reminded that it is not a good idea to destroy too much property.

Medford Mail, September 7, 1889, page 3. SOHS M77F2

    Small boys are running at large at unseasonable hours of night and making themselves generally obnoxious. They should be suppressed before they are further on the way to ruin.
"Here and There," Democratic Times, Jacksonville, July 11, 1890, page 3

Sunday Horse Racing.
    Numerous complaints are heard of the practice which some of our lively boys are getting into of running horse races on Sunday, for money, in the vicinity of town. The practice is demoralizing in the extreme, and while the Times does not desire to pose as a censor, the complaints which some of our best citizens are making concerning it should be heeded, or it will soon be hard to restrain the boys. Young America should not be suppressed entirely, but sometimes a little repression has a very beneficial effect in the long run. If, as reported, some boys of a larger growth are inciting the youngsters to their course, popular sentiment should deter them from persisting in it.
Democratic Times, Jacksonville, December 12, 1890, page 3


    Girls have a great many more trials than boys ever do.
    It takes a good-tempered girl not to be ill-humored all the time; for girls can never go any place without, when they come home, their mother asks them where they have been, if she finds out they have been gone. If they have gone some place that does not suit her, she scolds them. But boys can go anywhere they want to and no one knows or cares where they have been.
    Girls can never have spending money without they go and ask their mother for it, and then she always asks what they want it for. If she takes a notion to give it to them, and if she doesn't she tells them they don't need it or that she hasn't it to give to them.
    If girls make any noise, climb fences or trees, everyone calls them tomboys and tells them they don't behave well; while if boys scream, jump and yell, people say they are only boys and to let them have their fun while they can. But it makes no difference whether girls ever have any fun or not.

The Young Idea, Washington School publication, April 1891, page 3


    In the winter, when the snow is on the ground, we get our sleds and go to some hill nearby, and have a good time. When the ponds, lakes and rivers are frozen over we get our skates and skate as much as we want to, and we generally want to skate a great deal.
    When we are at school, and there is snow on the ground, we have lots of fun snowballing, for most boys like to snowball very well.
    Sometimes we go to spelling schools in the country to spell the "country jakes" down, but sometimes we get spelled down ourselves, for there are some pretty good spellers even in the country schools.

The Young Idea, Washington School publication, April 1891, page 3


    Some men have very long whiskers, while others have only a mustache or a goatee. Some have no whiskers at all. I have seen men that had mustaches that would not grow thick enough, so they had them shaved off. Mr. Jacobs has a heavy mustache, but his whiskers are very short and if he would let them grow and not shave they would come out and soon cover his face. I saw a man once that had a mustache which was so long that he could lay the ends of it on his shoulders.
The Young Idea, Washington School publication, April 1891, page 3

    I went up one Saturday morning on the train and saw their new depot which resembles a small store more than anything else. Then I went out to Mr. Knowles' about 12 o'clock M. In the afternoon Lucerne Rolison and Willie Reames came out and we played ball and several other games. The boys went home and we got supper and then went to bed.
    In the morning we got up and got breakfast and washed the dishes. Then we went out in the barn yard and Dora and Rena saddled and bridled the horses. While the girls were saddling the horses I took a ride on the girl's pet goat and it threw me off in the mud.
    We mounted and were off. We got as far as Griffin Creek and thought we wouldn't have any fun unless we went across the water so we went across the creek. I pretty near fell in. There was a man there and he laughed till we thought he would fall in. We went on as far as Mr. True's place and then we came back and got dinner. After dinner Lucerne and Jim Howard, of Medford, and Mike Galney came out and we played about a couple of hours and then I went down to Jacksonville, boarded the train and returned to my home in Medford well pleased with my trip.

The Young Idea, Washington School publication, April 1891, page 4

    I went to Jacksonville on a swift passenger train which has just commenced running lately. The train is a combination of an engine and one passenger coach, and sometimes a freight car.
    On my way to Jacksonville I saw a great many things of interest, green fields and pastures, farms, houses, orchards and some very beautiful flowers.
    Some of the people I saw there were very good-looking, and others were not. I also saw some Chinamen, but they were not any different-looking than they are here, because they all look alike. I went around the city awhile and then to the court house to hear a speech, after which I got my dinner at a restaurant. I saw the jail, many large stores and several nice dwellings. For my part I like Medford the best of the two towns for the reasons that it is a larger place and is on the main railroad.

The Young Idea, Washington School publication, April 1891, page 4

    I reached Jacksonville in a cart drawn by a pony. When I reached the city the pony got scared at a little boy running away from a dog that was going to bite him. I saw some very queer old people there. I met an old gentleman and he asked me where I was going, and I told him I was going until I stopped. On further when we were going through the town we saw a cow trying to jump the fence to got some hay that was in the yard. On a little further I met a friend of mine and she took me to see the court house. It is a very large building and nicely finished. We went out to the park and there we heard some fine music. The band plays well. By this time we thought the pony was tired so we put him in the stable. When night came the train arrived in Jacksonville and we saw lots of Medford people. They said that they came to see the beautiful city of Jacksonville. In the morning I came home and my opinion is that Medford is far ahead of that place in many ways.
The Young Idea, Washington School publication, April 1891, page 4

The Siskiyou Girl.
    The Siskiyou girl is not safe to trifle with. Her life has been spent aesthetically. She is a conversant with nature from early childhood, and having nothing else, probably, to do, she reads her lessons in mountain streams and storm-beaten rocks. Miss Siskiyou is a healthy and strapping dame. She has remarkable strength, and her power of endurance would shame a San Joaquin mule into committing suicide. Generally she is a capital shot, and with her brothers and father has assisted in the slaughter of bear, which abound in the mountains. She is expert with rod, and as a rider she could give points to the most daring queen of the circus. She comes of a predatory race, for these mountains are inhabited by a class of people who declare that they would die of suffocation in a village and that God intended man for the mountains and [the] wild beast for him to forage on.
    Under such conditions we find a tall and sinewy girl, with a foot ample in its dimensions, long but not broad, an ankle thin and well set, and an enormous length of limb. Her body is slight and willowy, her shoulders broad and straight, the chest but little developed, the throat thin, supporting a small head with very marked features. Her hair is generally tawny, her eyes blue, cold blue, her nose hooked, her mouth thin but large and furnished with strong white teeth. Her voice is metallic, and it has a queer ring in it as one accustomed to command. She pays no attention to her dress, and is unguilty of any attempt to make herself attractive.
    Her flirtations are limited, and so is her acquaintanceship. She admires the festive cowboy, while she has a wholesome contempt for the lumberman, whose occupation she deems girlish. But her whole soul--at least that portion of it which, poor girl, she has--is given up to the professional hunter, for in these mountainous wilds there live men whose business it is to hunt, as the rancheros offer respectable rewards for the skins of coyotes, bears and mountain lions, and a skillful shot can make more money at this pursuit--which to him, after all, is pleasure--than can the man who herds stock.--San Francisco Chronicle.
Medford Mail, January 28, 1892, page 4

    Some boys are handling their pea guns and slingshots rather carelessly and have done more or less injury at different times. The authorities have decided to arrest the offenders in the future, and we hope that this will serve as a caution.

"Local Notes," 
Democratic Times, Jacksonville, February 12, 1892, page 3

    Mrs. Warren Howard, while walking down the track on last Sunday, was hit in the head with a slingshot by her little boy, who was throwing rocks out of it just for fun, but it wasn't so funny for his mother, who lay aside of the track for an hour or two before she was able to walk. It has got to be a common pastime for the boys around town to be throwing continually with their slings, large as well as small boys, and nothing more dangerous could be used. Now boys, it is a good time to stop before we have a worse accident to record.
Medford Mail, May 26, 1893, page 1

    Last Saturday was April first, and the day was duly celebrated by the perpetration of many pranks by the juvenile world. The most extensive joke was that played on a farmer living between this place and Central Point, who was told by a small boy that a colt he had lost a few weeks ago had fallen into a ditch up the road a ways. The farmer unhitched from his plow and started out to extricate the colt--which he didn't find and is still looking for. He has sworn vengeance on the boy and is loaded with a double-barreled gun--and the boy goes cross lots when he reaches Mr. Farmer's place.

"City Local Whirl," Medford Mail, April 7, 1893, page 3

    Frank Galloway is no astronomer. On election night the boys sent up some paper balloons. Mr. Galloway caught sight of one of them when it was a few miles heavenward, and thought it was Mars--and wanted to enter into a fistic encounter with anyone who disputed his assertion.

"City Local Whirl," Medford Mail, May 5, 1893, page 3

    Walking on stilts has become quite a fashion with the youngsters in our neighborhood since the recent bad weather. They wade across creeks and bridges with the greatest delight, seeming to enjoy being so far above the mud. But accidents will sometimes happen, and Dannie Soliss learned the truth of this a few days ago. He had been walking around looking down with satisfaction on the mud beneath him when he concluded to try a race with his dog. Starting off at breakneck speed, one of the foot supports gave away, precipitating him headfirst and full length in the mud, plowing quite a furrow. Results--boy and stilts laid up for repairs.

"Griffin Creek Gatherings," Medford Mail, January 5, 1894, page 2

    There is a little act which is being persisted in by several of the small boys about this city, which, if continued, will cost themselves and their parents no little trouble. The act is that of shooting and killing robins. This in direct violation of the state law and is punishable by either a fine or imprisonment, or both. The weapon used is a little spring gun with buckshots for bullets, and the practice is not alone confined to birds but to chickens and dogs as well. Several parties have reported to us the names of the boys who killed them, but out of respect for their parents, and through a hope that they will desist without publicity we will not publish their names at present. Some of these boys are old enough to know better than to get mixed up in such unprincipled acts.

"News of the City," Medford Mail, March 23, 1894, page 3

    The Medford Mail reads the riot act to the small boys who have been killing robins in that part of the valley. The orchardists should look after the matter and put a stop to it. The robin is a great bug hunter and worm eater and a valuable ally of the farmer and gardener.--Ashland Tidings.
"News of the City," Medford Mail, March 30, 1894, page 3

    If Medford parents could see and hear their children as others do, there would be less of boisterous conduct at public entertainments in the opera house. An encore or applause is all very right and proper when deserved, but prolonged whistling, shouting or stamping of feet is an act far beneath the conduct of a true gentleman. Boys can be little gentlemen if they will, and no better place is there to show this spirit of manliness than at a public entertainment. If parents do not take their wayward and boisterous children in hand at these public gatherings and see that they do not disturb those who go there to listen to the speakers, the marshal will be called upon to eject them from the hall.
"News of the City," Medford Mail, May 25, 1894, page 3

    Boys will be boys just the same as girls will be girls, but because this is true it is no reason why boys should not be little gentlemen and girls little ladies. However, it is boys only that we have to deal with in this item. The Mail knows of boys, who are old enough to know better, and whose mothers would give them a good snug spanking if they knew of some of their little acts. The act referred to is nothing more nor less than that of stealing fruit from the several stands about the city. Of course it is not your boys, but those neighbors' boys are a bad crowd and ought to be attended to. No longer than a few weeks ago one of our merchants reported having seen two boys slip around a street corner and steal peaches and apples from a box, slip them in their pockets, then enter the store and pilfer a few handsful of grapes from boxes sitting on the counter. The parents of these lads would be mortified to no small degree if they knew their sons would steal, but they do, and a starting out in this direction unless carefully guarded will land the young culprits in the penitentiary. If the boys are caught in this act again, their names will be printed in this paper.
"News of the City," Medford Mail, October 12, 1894, page 3

    Report reaches us that boys who would like to be men and who want to act like men--real bad ones--are in the habit of of congregating in old sheds and various other unused buildings about the city, and there put in their time playing poker; of course in a mild way, with only a nickel ante, but the habit is sufficiently alluring to take the boys from their homes and make gamblers of them. Parents should exercise the greatest possible vigilance in this matter and break up these little gatherings, which if diligently followed up cannot fail to result disastrously to the young men of our city.
"News of the City," Medford Mail, April 5, 1895, page 5

    John Bigham, living out on Dr. Adkins' place, south of Medford, has entered a complaint that the small boys who go bathing in the river near his place are making themselves too familiar with his potato patch. He has the identity of the lads written where he will not forget it, and if they do not let loose of his potato vines, and stay loose, he will have them before Judge Walton.
"News of the City," Medford Mail, July 5, 1895, page 5

    Following the example set by some of the larger boys, Loid Cox and a son of George Riggs, both about ten years of age, "took the road" last Friday, with the idea that they were doing something to be proud of, and that they would win them fame and admiration of the Evans and Sontag style.
    The Riggs boy, alias "Leandy Neil's son," obtained a quarter of Mrs. Cox under the pretext of wishing to buy a new hat. The boys then induced one of the Miller boys to let them have his gun, stating that they were going to Dead Indian and would bring him a pony to pay for it. Cartridges were purchased with the money, and, after some little preparation, the boys set out along the railroad track. They were next seen at Steinman by Lee Minkler, who telegraphed the information to city marshal G. W. Smith.
    After one night of desperado life, the Riggs boy became "homesick" and returned, leaving young Cox alone with the empty gun. When last heard of, Cox was stopping with a relative of Nim Long, in the Siskiyous. He will be sent home at once.
The Ashland Advertiser, August 21, 1895, page 1

Duties of Pupils.
    The following rules relating to duties of pupils attending the public schools of Medford have been passed by the school board.
    They will commend themselves to the good judgment of the patrons of the school, and to every pupil who desires to make the most of his time and opportunities while in school.
    The issuing of these rules does not indicate that our schoolchildren are in special need of them, but that Medford is growing so fast that it is better to anticipate contingencies than to wait until necessity urges action. The good do not object to wholesome laws; others, who are wise, acquiesce. Patrons may care to keep this paper for future reference:
    1. Due attention shall be given to personal neatness and cleanliness. Any pupil failing in these respects may be sent home to be prepared for school. Any pupil affected with any contagious disease shall not be allowed to remain in school.
    2. Willful disobedience, habitual truancy, vulgarity or profanity, stealing or carrying deadly weapons, or violating the criminal or civil laws of the state or city, the use of intoxicating drinks or of tobacco in any form or of smoking any substance whatever on or about the school premises or on the way to or from school, will subject the offender to suspension or expulsion.
    3. Pupils who shall mark, cut or write upon any property used for school purposes or in any other way deface or injure it shall pay for the damage and be liable to punishment, suspension or expulsion.
    4. No pupil shall be allowed to be absent from school during regular sessions for the purpose of receiving any kind of instruction.
    5. No books, papers or other literature of any sort can be allowed in the school rooms unless directly connected with school work.
    6. Pupils must not enter other school rooms than their own unless granted permission by the principal.
    7. Pupils may be temporarily suspended from class exercises by the teacher, who shall immediately report with reason to the principal.
    8. Pupils detained from school must bring a written excuse from their parents on their return.
Medford Mail, October 18, 1895, page 4

    The city curfew bell has commenced its tolling. The hour is eight-thirty p.m., and when that hour has been tolled by the city clock it is high time all young people were at home. If the ruination of a boy is desired parents have but to allow him to roam the streets at will. There is nothing that will ruin a boy so quickly as unwatched liberty. It is during these night carousals that he learns the vulgarism which will grow to something worse and the idea of having so little respect for himself or those around him. It may be that the fond parents who allow their eight- or twelve-year-old boy to continually absent himself from home night after night will, someday, when it is too late, have cause to weep, and bitterly too, for neglecting their boy during his tender years. The above is as true of your daughter as your son. Of course your children are all right, but you ought to speak to your neighbor regarding theirs.
Medford Mail, October 25, 1895, page 4

    It has long been the practice of some of the many boys who congregate at the depot at the time of the arrival and departure of trains to board the overland train as it pulls out and ride out the length of the platform. The Mail has been asked to state that there is a city ordinance prohibiting such acts, and that those who persist in so doing will in the future be looked after by the marshal.
"News of the City," Medford Mail, October 25, 1895, page 5

    Some of Medford's young hoodlums threw a rock through the window of one of the coaches on the overland train Monday night. The train was near the south end of the side track, and quite a number of small boys were gathered there, but which one threw the rock has not as yet been ascertained. There are quite a number of boys in Medford who seem to take delight in causing someone injury, and some of these times they will be caught in the act and be made to suffer the penalty of the law.
"News of the City," Medford Mail, November 22, 1895, page 5

   Report comes to us that for three afternoons in succession this week an elderly and quite well-dressed man has been noticed standing at the corner of Seventh and C streets at about the hour when the children were returning from school, and in one instance, our informant states, he has been seen to hand candy and apples to the little girls as they pass. This procedure may be all correct and right, but just why this fellow should allow his generosity to bestow sweetmeats upon other people's children is not quite clear. If he does not desist in these practices some of the irate parents of the city will make the surroundings decidedly tropical for him. Grants Pass had a case somewhat similar to this something like a year ago, but the escapade did not end in the bestowal of sweetmeats, but instead, if we remember correctly, the miserable rascal of that city persuaded a couple of young girls to accompany him down into California where they were overtaken by parents and brought back home and the leprous blot upon society who had thus attempted to ruin two young girls was given a good sound thrashing. If these things, as reported, exist in Medford the villain's career will be a short one here.
Medford Mail, February 7, 1896, page 5

The Land of Quails.
    EDITORS MAIL--Some weeks ago I saw in your paper an article by "Farmer" in which article it was stated that quails had been trapped hereabouts in numbers, thirty at a clip; and a hint to the transgressors of the law to look a "little out." Later on I saw a notice in the paper of another article, presumably from Eden precinct, in regard to quails, but could not be published on account of being signed only by "Subscriber." I was not the author of either of said articles, but I am a citizen of this, our glorious Eden. But to the point--trapping quails--from time immemorial it has been the habit of the small boy to gather some little sticks, and with his own little hands make for himself a little trap and set the same in some out-of-the-way fence corner. With what eagerness the little fellow baits and tends that trap, and with what great expectations of joy and delight he looks forward to the capture of his first bird, and when he has him, how he bounds away to his dear mamma, at every stride feeling himself a sportsman of such dimensions as to stand fully "six feet three in his stocking feet." It seems that Eden has been no exception to the rule. The small boy has been in evidence here. The facts, as I have gathered them, are about as follows: Some little school boys are together, each boasting of his prowess as a sportsman. One little fellow had caught six in his trap, one and two at a time. Another little fellow had caught so many; another, in all during the past year had caught thirty-five. Now, whether any, or all of these birds, were caught "in season" or "out of season," I do not know and I doubt very much if "Farmer" knows either. My little boys have had no traps out, not because they were afraid of being reported by "Farmer" or that they even knew that there was such a law in existence but, as I take it, they did not think about it, or were too lazy to make them and put them out. But it is to be hoped that "Farmer" will not crush these youthful sportsmen. Spare the little fellows. Perhaps they too may someday become a great and good "Farmer."
Medford Mail, March 13, 1896, page 7

    The Mail is never saying a word when the boys of our town indulge in innocent fun, or if they reach out into a little hilarity, so long as no person is inconvenienced by it and no property damaged, but when these boys--young men--make night so unpleasant as to call out censure from many of the good ladies of our town it is then time for something to be done. There is a crowd of young men in this town which are fast closing about them shackles of vice and dissipation that will be difficult for them to throw off when the error of their way is discovered. They are sowing their wild oats upon too fertile soil. One lady asked us if we knew where the city marshal was at nighttime when the sidewalks in various parts of the town are thronged with half-drunken hoodlums, and their shouts of blasphemy and vulgarity making the nights, instead of a time of rest for the residents, one of very much unrest and disgust. We are unable to state where the marshal is at these times, but we hope, for the sake of peace and quietude of the citizens, and the general good of these young men, that he will happen around sometime during the heat of these revelries and make an example of some of the offenders by placing them in the city bastille. There is far too much of this thing going on, and there is but one way to prevent it--and this is to round the boys up with a short turn--which will be done by the people whom they disturb, if not by the officers.
"News of the City, Medford Mail, August 21, 1896, page 7

    Boys will play ball in almost any place and upon almost any and all occasions, but they should remember that when they play on the business streets a ball is liable to go ker-plunk through a large glass show window. The marshal has been asked to line himself up in the vicinity of where these boys play and if they do not desist or move to a place where there is less danger, to gently remind them that the old calaboose is still in use and that they are liable to occupy it.
"City Happenings," Medford Mail, April 15, 1898, page 7

    Last week Jesse Wilson, Jr. and a son of M. Demmer, both about 11 years of age, become involved in a personal encounter, the former getting the worst of it. It is reported that, being furnished a pistol by his mother, Mrs. Rose Wilson, who with John Carlyle urged him to shoot his opponent, he shot at him twice. The man and woman were bound over by Justice Jones to appear before the grand jury with bonds fixed at $250 each.
"Medford Squibs," Democratic Times, Jacksonville, June 13, 1898, page 3

    For some time past the small boys of the city have been violating a city ordinance by jumping on and off moving trains when in Medford yards. Officer Murray has gotten tired of warning the boys of the danger of the practice, and one afternoon this week he swooped down upon three of them and took them under his wing where they remained a few hours, or until friends interceded on their behalf and secured for them their liberty. They were Fred Crystal, Alex. Hanley and Frank Isaacs. There are others who are in the habit of thus boarding trains, and they should be similarly treated. Mr. Murray caught Billie Bateman in the act a day or two later, and he immediately proceeded to treat him in a manner like unto the small boys, except that he went direct to the recorder's office and paid his fine. In speaking of the matter, Mr. Bateman said he paid his fine willingly, knowing as he did that the paying of it might save some boy the loss of an arm or leg, or possibly his life.

"City Happenings," Medford Mail, September 21, 1900, page 7

Harvey Copeland and the Talent Boys to Be Prosecuted for Stoning Train.
    In Justice Stewart's court at Medford Tuesday Harvey Copeland, a youth of 14 years, was bound over to appear before the April term of circuit court charged with the crime of malicious destruction of personal property, District Attorney Reames appearing for the state. This boy was one of a gang of boys who on Sunday afternoon lined up along the railroad track about opposite Engineer McCarthy's orchard this side of Talent and made a systematic attack upon the windows of the coaches of the passenger train as it was going by. The crowd of boys rained the train with stones and broke the windows in the day coach, a tourist sleeper and a standard Pullman. A boy passenger in the tourist car was struck and injured very seriously by a stone striking him in the face.
    Chief of Detectives Crowley was on the train and immediately alighted, and caught the boys in the act. He heard the boy Harvey Copeland gleefully remark "I put one square in there." Other and older boys were more to blame than this boy, but as it is hard to secure evidence to convict as evidence needed to be established is which one actually threw the stone that destroyed the property [sic].  A statute is needed making it a crime to throw a stone or other missile at a car in which there is any human beings.
    It is probable that the other boys will be arrested by the time court meets. Up to the present time they seem to be standing together.
    There has been complaint of this kind of mischief before from this section.
Valley Record, Ashland, March 21, 1901, page 3

    For some time trainmen on the Southern Pacific have been annoyed by a crowd of young hoodlums or juvenile outlaws at Talent, who would conceal themselves in a spot conveniently near the railroad track, and when a train would come along a volley of rocks would be thrown at the cars, smashing windows and making it otherwise uncomfortable for those in charge of the trains. The young bandits, becoming emboldened at their success in annoying the freight trains, attacked the Sunday evening northbound passenger with a fusillade of stones, one of which crashed through a window in the day coach and another through a window in a tourist car, which struck a little five-year-old boy on the cheek, inflicting a painful bruise. Chief Detective J. J. Crowley, of the Southern Pacific, happened to be aboard the train, and when Phoenix was reached he alighted and returned to the scene of the attack, where he succeeded in learning the names of the young culprits. Operator Mahoney was also on the train and being an eyewitness of the attack swore out a warrant Monday morning, charging Harry and Grover Copeland with willful and malicious destruction of personal property. Constable Johnson went to Talent Monday and arrested the boys, who were brought to Medford and given a preliminary hearing before justice Stewart Tuesday, prosecuting attorney A. E. Reames appearing for the State. A number of boys who were in the attacking party were brought to Medford as witnesses for the State, but their testimony was of a rather unsatisfactory character. The result of the hearing was that Harry Copeland, who is about fifteen years of age, was held to answer to the above-stated charge at the next session of the circuit court, his bonds placed at $100, which were furnished. Meanwhile prosecuting attorney Reames will thoroughly investigate the matter in regard to the other boys connected with the affair, and will probably take some action upon the case at a later date. The boys are all sons of respectable parents who were ignorant of their conduct until it was brought to their notice Monday, and who will doubtless exercise a greater vigilance over them in the future. They should have and probably will be disciplined severely, and the lesson taught them thus early in their lawless careers should have a wholesome effect upon them.

"City Happenings," Medford Mail, March 22, 1901, page 7

    Medford citizens have made complaint to the Mail in effect that there are boys of the town who have a well-organized and evidently successful scheme for robbing chicken yards of hen eggs. We are told that the boys are from twelve to fourteen years of age and that their scheme is to visit a residence, and while one of them engages the lady of the house in conversation upon matters of interest to her the other stealthily makes his way to the chicken house and makes away with all the eggs to be found. There are said to be three or four families who have been thus victimized, and it is told that a thousand or more eggs have been the boys' profit in their little game. Our townspeople are warned against these juvenile thieves, and they will probably find it to their interest to institute a vigorous crusade against them ere they become emboldened to acts of similar character but greater in importance.
"Additional Local," Medford Mail, April 5, 1901, page 6

    Several of our citizens have made complaint to the effect that boys have a well-organized scheme for robbing chicken yards. The boys are from 12 to 14 years of age, and their method is to visit a residence, and while one of them engages the lady of the house in conversation, the other makes away with all the eggs he can find.
"Medford Squibs," Democratic Times, Jacksonville, April 18, 1901, page 7

    H. S. Brumble, the deliveryman, is being very much annoyed these times by children jumping onto his wagons. He fully realizes that it is a dangerous practice, but he is unable to put a stop to it. This notice is published to give warning to parents that he will in no way be responsible for accidents that may occur by the practice, and he asks them to assist him in putting a stop to it.

"City Happenings," Medford Mail, June 7, 1901, page 7

    Queer world, isn't it? Last Sunday we saw a young fellow about fourteen or fifteen years of age, on the shady side of a building, "all by his lonely," trying to learn to smoke. He was puffing away awkwardly on a cheap cigar, furtively looking about to see if anyone was noticing his efforts to acquire a habit that seemed to him would be indisputable evidence of his having attained manhood's estate. The boy was white in the face and seemed to be enduring physical torture, but yet there was a supremely happy cast upon his countenance which would indicate a contentment of mind born of a knowledge that great designs are only accomplished by great personal sacrifices. Within the confines of this city are dozens of men who, having used the weed for years and have learned the discomforts, and the physical infirmities, it carries with it, are just as anxious to quit as the young fellow is to learn. It is indeed a queer world.
"City Happenings," Medford Mail, July 5, 1901, page 7

    Three boys of tender age, two of whom are named Howard, broke into a dwelling house one day this week and stole a watch and some other articles, which they sold to a second-hand store. They were allowed to go upon their own recognizance, but will probably be sent to the reform school as soon as Judge Prim returns from his vacation.
"Medford Squibs," Democratic Times, Jacksonville, July 25, 1901, page 4

Robert Beall Strang, 10/28/1895-10/23/1974
Comes Back to Revisit Old Scenes
By Bob Strang Jr.

   It is with mingled emotions that a former resident of Medford returns to review his youthful stomping grounds. There is little joy to be found in the renewal of ties that no longer exist. Yet, after an absence of nearly 15 years, there remains something about Medford that I will forever call home.
    Of course, there are infrequent trips to this community for purposes of vacationing. On most of these trips from where I now live in Reno, Nevada, it has been rather difficult to return. However, the years have passed and new friends have replaced the lost, stolen, or strayed.
    Age has formulated new outlooks on both society and everyday activity until, at last, what is left for me here fades into memories.
    My fondest recollections of Medford are those of the early childhood I spent here. They are something of swimming in Bear Creek despite my mother's warning, of running away after school to play in a neighbor's pungent-smelling woodpile, of the Fourth of July picnics in the old family tradition, of the schoolteacher who spanked me at Roosevelt grammar school, of romping in Medford Park like a young fawn to the martial music of the Medford Band, and the blaring of the auto horns after each number was played, of the hikes to the reservoir or Roxy Ann, and the spook stories around a Boy Scout campfire near Main Street bridge.
    I do recall these things along with the fine spiritual upbringing of Sunday school here in Medford.
    There always seemed to be plenty of good food and good water in Medford. The quality of the produce is clearly reflected in the faces of youngsters that now abound in Medford. For Medford is a good town to be brought up in; it is a clean and healthy community that builds fine young citizens so that wherever they go most will often sigh and say, "There's no place like Medford."
    And should you pass some strange-looking "duffer" walking about this fair town with a rather saddened expression on his face, he will probably prove to be just a visitor here who is trying to recall his old pals around him once more that they might again enjoy the precious privilege of growing up together in Medford.
    Today, Medford forges ahead in its throes of progress, and the real progress that counts is in the betterment of living conditions with erection of new homes and light industry that continues to bring comforts and profits that Medford might continue to reward her native sons and daughters with something that is called: "Really living!"
    That's Medford for you and yours, but as for me I long to return so that should my household be graced with any children, they could have the same privileges once enjoyed and still so dear to me.
Medford News, July 8, 1949, page 1

    Chief of Police Johnson reports that someone, presumably the small boys of the city, has of late been committing an offense against the well-being of our townspeople, the same being that of stretching wires across the sidewalk at a height which trip and throw pedestrians. Mr. Johnson was very close onto the trail of the miscreants Sunday night. He is watching every turn of the road and hopes to be able to run the lads into court unless they sidetrack their dangerous notions.

"City Happenings," Medford Mail, January 2, 1902, page 7

    A three-year-old Medford girl decided last week that she would like to have her hair cut short, so that when she washed her face she could "make a big noise" and rub the water over her head "like Papa does." In pursuance of this idea she secured the family scissors and retired to the back porch, where she proceeded to do the barber act herself. The result was not up to date as far as smoothness is concerned, but the hair was short enough, so short, in fact, that her father took her to the barber shop to have the job smoothed. Now that little girl washes her face "like Papa."

"City Happenings," Medford Mail, February 21, 1902, page 7

    The Mail has been asked by a resident of West Medford to call parents' attention to the fact that some of the girls and boys of our town have gotten into the habit of seeking trysting places near the outskirts of our city, on the west, and that it is no uncommon occurrence to see two or more quite young girls stroll out that way between twelve o'clock noon and one o'clock p.m., and a little later as many boys can be seen going in the same direction, but by a different route. None of the parties rarely ever return until about or after four o'clock. How far they go out our informant did not know, but he thought it was a matter which the parents generally ought to know of and that there ought to be a stop put to it at once. He presumed these girls and boys were thought to be at school by their parents. Whether this be the case or not, no good can come from the habit, and it should at once be stopped. He has promised to secure the names of the parties which he will report direct to their parents.

"City Happenings," Medford Mail, April 4, 1902, page 7

    Complaint is made about boys getting into barns about town and doing all kinds of mischief. Several of the citizens have lost their patience of late and the boys, if they continue their depredations, will surely get into serious trouble, which parents can avert by exercising a little discipline with their young Americans.

"City Happenings," Medford Mail, August 8, 1902, page 7

    Our town seems to have its full share of hoodlums, who delight in breaking windows and wantonly destroying other property. Their parents should take them in hand and teach them better; otherwise they should be punished for their transgression of the law.
"Local Notes," Democratic Times, Jacksonville, August 21, 1902, page 5

    Report comes to us that hunters along Bear Creek are killing meadowlarks in great number. There is a state law prohibiting the killing of these birds, and unless there is a swift halt called someone is going to get into trouble. It is really a shame that men and boys can find no better diversion than killing birds which the state laws endeavor to protect and which the people generally would like to see protected.

"City Happenings," Medford Mail, October 24, 1902, page 7

    Some of the school children have a habit of running to cross in front of moving trains whenever they happen along. An example of their action was given Wednesday when the southbound passenger train came in an hour late. Several of the smaller boys started to run across the track in front of the engine and for an instant it looked as though some of them would be killed. Shouts from bystanders stopped some of them in time to save their lives. Parents should warn their children not to attempt to cross in front of rapidly moving trains.

Medford Mail, December 19, 1902, page 3

Embryo Highwaymen.
    Sunday night, says the Tidings, two Ashland boys, Ralph Miller and Fred Riggs, were arrested charged with having committed depredations from which the people of the Granite City have been suffering lately. From circumstances it is strongly suspected that the two boys are the leaders of an organized gang, who, having crammed themselves on yellow-backed literature, had resolved to take to the woods in true highwayman style. When arrested the boys had three rifles in their possession and had started for the Siskiyous. Other suspects are under surveillance, and more arrests may follow.
Medford Mail, January 30, 1903, page 2

    Policeman G. F. Eglin corralled eleven boys, of from 12 to 16 years of age, Friday, who were catching a ride on an incoming southbound freight train, and brought them uptown to the chief of police, who took their names and liberated them. A number of boys of that age are in the habit of going to the northern suburbs, where trains are compelled to run slow on account of the heavy grade, to jump on and ride into town. Several accidents have occurred in that way, and the police and railroad officials are trying to stop the practice. Policeman Eglin says that the next time the boys are caught he will lock them in jail.
Ashland Tidings, September 21, 1903, page 2

A Youthful Gang of Thieves.
    Considerable of a sensation was created in Jacksonville a few days since by the discovery that a number of small boys, the oldest of whom is not more than 13 years, have for some time past been engaged in systematic larceny. It seems that they had a regularly formed organization, duly officered, and operated in a businesslike manner, distributing the proceeds of their thievery as a corporation would its dividends.
    One of the leaders of the gang was detected in stealing from the till of a saloon in which he was employed in a small way, and will be taken to the Oregon Reform School. While a confederate of the same age stood in front of the building watching the movements of the barkeeper while he was employed outside, the other boy would help himself to the nickels in a drawer. A low whistle from his colleague would warn him of impending danger, and he then left by the way he came. This had been progressing some time, and the youthful thieves probably secured $50 or $60 before being trapped. The depredations came to light through the peaching of a boy who had heard what was going on.
    To many it seems that all of those boys who were engaged in this and like depredations should have been sent to the reform school, if any.
Democratic Times, Jacksonville, November 4, 1903, page 1

    The children are said to be bad in school, but they are very civil on the streets, and molest vacant property not oftener than once a year. Our school system is defective and unsatisfactory. A bright girl of thirteen said she read in the Third Reader and the eight-year-old brother said he was in the Primer. For dullness and want of progress and life this can be exceeded no place where people are alive to school matters. The old-style schools could show far speedier progress, but might not afford so many "smart aleck" pupils or depreciative teachers, few of whom are masters. The old style develops the Continental and the Grand Army of the Civil War. Who stands higher in the annals of the times? No, Mr. Editor, no state can show more civil children (boys in particular) on the street than this same town.
Reese P. Kendall, "Oregon," Beloit Weekly Times, Beloit, Kansas, February 18, 1904, page 8

Children's Parade, East Main Street, Medford, Oregon July 4, 1904
Children's parade, East Main Street, July 4, 1904.

How It Was Observed in Different Parts of Jackson County.
    A good many Medford people remained at home and passed the day quietly. About ten o'clock those who happened to be downtown were surprised to see a miniature Fourth of July procession coming up Seventh Street.
Children's Parade, East Main Street, Medford, Oregon July 4, 1904
    A number of young girls and boys, wishing to demonstrate their patriotic feelings, resolved to have a parade of their own, and there was a surprise on the older heads.
Children's Parade, East Main Street, Medford, Oregon July 4, 1904
    Mayor E. B. Pickel led the cavalcade and was followed by the boys and girls in gaily decorated vehicles of various descriptions and upon bicycles decorated with the national colors: The army, the navy, the goddess of liberty and many other characters appeared in the procession, which, considering the youth of the participants and the short time in which they had to prepare it, was very creditable. Those who participated were Misses Ruth Lumsden, Fern Hutchison, Hazel Enyart, Angle Purdin, Gladys Curry, Hilda Bundy, Gertrude Fay, Lyle Purdin, Carrie Bundy, Grace Dent, Rosamond Kennedy, Masters Charlie Angle, Roland Kelly, Fred Purdin, Homer and Lloyd Elwood, Herbert Alford, Gene Narregan, Earl Kennedy, Robert and Herbert Strang, Frank Willeke and Johnny Goodwyn.
Children's Parade, East Main Street, Medford, Oregon July 4, 1904
    The ball game in Medford was THE feature of features: one of the most mirth-provoking and side-splitting seances ever perpetuated. it was between the "Fats" and "Leans," and was won in a walk by the "Fats."
Excerpt, Medford Mail, July 8, 1904, page 1    For details of the ball game, click here.

    About a week or ten days ago some children, while playing along the bank of Bear Creek, near the Messner place, north of the steel bridge, found intact the leg below the knee of a human being. A few days later J. W. Prall's attention was called to the find, and on Wednesday of this week he reported the case to Coroner Cameron. The leg had evidently been disjointed at the knee; the flesh had been gnawed off by carnivorous animals, or had sloughed off, from the knee to near the ankle. The flesh was still on the ankle and foot, and upon the ankle there was a portion of a stocking. It is the right leg, and from the fact that the foot is small and slim it is undoubtedly a woman's.

"Additional Local," Medford Mail, November 4, 1904, page 8

Some of these days a small boy will take a "long chance" at the Southern Pacific depot that will be just a little too long. Then there will be sorrow in some family and a lifelong bitter memory to some railway engineer. Boys have the habit of taking short rides on the steps of the cars, although this practice has been stopped to a great extent by the vigilance of the officers and the ordinance against it; but every once in a while some young American conceives the idea that it is necessary that he get to the other side of the track just as a train pulls in and makes a dash in front of the locomotive. The consequence is that spectators hold their breath until the reckless "kid" is safe and then regret that he didn't get bumped hard enough to give a realization of the chances he was taking. The other day just as northbound train No. 16 had gotten under fair headway pulling out of Medford, a small boy on a wheel attempted to cross the track in front of the engine. His wheel slipped on the rail and he fell squarely on the track. A bystander pulled the bicycle off the track, and the engineer stopped the train with a suddenness that brought the seated passengers to their feet and those standing to a recumbent position. When the train stopped the pilot was within three feet of where the boy lay on the track. If he had been killed no blame could have attached to anyone, but the sorrow and regret mentioned in the first lines of this item would have been none the less poignant.
"City Happenings," Medford Mail, April 21, 1905, page 5

    Our young people should be kept off the streets at unseasonable hours. The parents should hold their children responsible in this matter. It is out of place, damaging in character for school girls to sit in the public park with young men. The teacher's authority holds until a pupil has been home from school. Then the parent is responsible. Let us cooperate in every way to inculcate right ideas in the minds of our young people in regard to such things. We cannot afford that ONE shall go wrong because we are neglectful.
"School Notes," Medford Mail, December 15, 1905, page 4

Watermelons Slaughtered.
    A party of twenty-five young people gathered in Medford Monday evening, were loaded in hay racks comfortably upholstered with straw, and then made a demonstration in force in the direction of Ed. Phipps' melon patch [on Vilas Road], five miles from the city. The attacking column was thrown into confusion shortly after crossing Bear Creek by a breaking of a wheel on one of the wagons, and some time was lost in making repairs before the forward movement could be commenced. This delay only served, however, to make the attack the more fierce when the battleground was finally reached and in making the victory all the more complete.
    Mr. Phipps had been warned of the expedition and had prepared by picking thirty-five of the largest and juiciest melons to be found in the patch. Also he prepared a huge campfire for the comfort of the expected guests.
    After serenading everyone along the way the jolly crowd finally reached the hospitable Phipps farm and made a combined assault upon the pile of melons, which speedily melted away. More substantial viands and coffee were served also, and the scene around the campfire was an animated and joyous one. Games were played, songs sung and stories told. There was a melon-eating contest in which Clarence Kellogg carried off the honors, and at a late hour the party returned, all loud in the praise of the hospitality of Mr. and Mrs. Phipps and the sweetness of his melons. The members of the party were:
    Misses Ida Redden, Myrtle Taylor, Mae Roberts, Sadie Amann, Bertha McPherson, May Phipps, Mae Gregory, Myrtle Lawton, Nola Redden, Grace Lawton, Minnie Corey, Nannie Matney, Mrs. C. T. McPherson; Messrs. C. T. McPherson, Kellogg, Frideger, Meeker, Jones, Gregory, Frideger, Phipps, Forbes, Jackson.
Medford Mail, September 7, 1906, page 1

    A traveling man--"Do you know, that I know, that Medford people are making a mistake in permitting the sale of an inferior quality of apples to passengers at the depot. I went through your town a few days ago, and the apples the boys were selling were not good ones. I saw a passenger buy some of these apples, take a bite out of one and throw the remainder of the apple at the boy who sold it to him. That wasn't a good advertisement for your great fruit country. While I admire the boys' hustling propensities, still I believe they ought to sell the very best there is to be had. Some of these apples were Ben Davis, which are not by any means Rogue River Valley's pride, and hardly palatable this early in the season. Then I saw some of the apples had scale on them--that is not good for the country, either. I believe your townspeople ought to keep an eye on this matter, and while nothing should be done to discourage the boys in the method they have adopted to earn a little money, it should be insisted upon that they sell only good, clean fruit."
"Things Told on the Street," Medford Mail, November 29, 1907, page 1

Discovered With Cards During Recess and Taken Before Superintendent.
    MEDFORD, Or., Feb. 7.--(Special.)--A harmless deck of playing cards has caused a commotion in public school circles of Medford this week. Four youths who had the cards in their possession were expelled. Their fathers took the matter up before the school board, which, after two days' weighty deliberation, reinstated the students and forced Superintendent Signs publicly to apologize to the offending pupils. The climax came this noon when Professor Signs tendered his resignation.
    The boys were Willis Denton, Everett Corey, Walter and Emerson Merrick, the two latter the sons of Councilman F. B. Merrick. Their ages run from 13 to 15, and all are students in the eighth grade at the North School.
    The trouble started last Tuesday noon when Professor Shirley found the boys toying with a deck of cards during the noon hour. The cards belonged to Willis Denton, who was dealing them out to the other boys, though no game was being played. Having a deck of playing cards was evidently a serious offense in the eyes of the principal, who summoned the boys upon the carpet to meet Superintendent Signs, who was summoned from the high school.
    The first trouble of this kind is said to have first started last Christmas, when at the Christmas tree festivities one of the instructors was presented with an elaborately tied package. It was unwrapped in the presence of the school and found to contain a bottle of beer, upon which the instructor waxed very wroth, amid the laughter of the students. This is supposed to have been traced to some of the expelled youths.

Morning Oregonian, Portland, February 8, 1908, page 16

    In cutting into the back wall of the old wooden building at the corner of 8th and D streets Friday last, in order to gain entrance into the garret of the building for the purpose of putting in electric lights, Emery Purdin discovered an ancient rendezvous of youthful "pirates." In the rear end of the building was a "den" fully fitted up for the use of embryo terrors of the seas or of the highways, lined and carpeted with blankets and cloth, so that no light could be seen from without and no sound could escape. The youngsters who built this den were perfectly safe from detection, so safe indeed were they that no one except themselves ever had an inkling of such a resort until it was discovered by the saw of the electric line man.
    In the days when Medford wasn't fretting about paved streets or city water, when one could wade across Bear Creek, or swim, according to the stage of the water, when we didn't jump at the "honk-honk" of an auto, and were not compelled to stand on one foot in cold mud and swear with the other while a Southern Pacific "fast" freight made up its mind to get off the crossing, there was evidently a desperate gang of embryo bandits, who fortunately for the community and themselves never got beyond the embryo stage. The den aforementioned was furnished with a table made of a packing box, stools made of smaller boxes, there were a few worn and mouldering cards lying on the table, a few poker chips and other evidences of the ferocious character of the former occupants of the retreat. Among the paraphernalia found were two strongboxes fastened with the regulation strong hasp and padlock, such as no pirate band could be without. Evidently each member had a locker, and his confidence in his companions was not strong.
    In the farther end of the attic was the entrance, and it puzzled the finders of the den for awhile to discover how the former occupants had gained entry to the attic, but finally one of the searchers pulled a string that dangled from the roof and an ingeniously contrived trapdoor dropped, disclosing an opening in the roof of the building--so well fitted that no complaint had ever been made of leakage in the covering of the building. The trapdoor is about 12x 14 inches in size, which in itself explains the desperate and dangerous character of the former occupants of the den. The string led through a hole in the wall and could be pulled from the outside, and its location was evidently known only to the initiated.
    The room had evidently not been occupied for years--probably not since its builders grew to such a size that they couldn't get through that 12x14 hole, but those of us who have been boys themselves can imagine the thrills those kids had as they crept up on that roof in the night and pulled the string that admitted them to the secret den of the "Black Pirates of the Spanish Main" or whatever name the "gang" went by.
    The building is one of the oldest in town and was at the time this den was probably built was occupied as a store by Smith & Cranfill, and some of the furnishings had evidently been confiscated from this store.
Medford Mail, February 14, 1908, page 1

Scholars Refuse to Attend School Under New Instructor,
Who Was Transferred by Board.

    School children of Medford attending the eighth grade of the North School are on a strike. They demand the reinstatement of Principal J. W. Shirley, their instructor, and refuse to attend school unless he is reinstated. To this end the striking pupils are circulating petitions which are being signed by business men asking for Professor Shirley's reinstatement.
    The Medford school board transferred Professor Shirley to the fifth grade at the West School, and engaged H. H. Stein, formerly an employee at Garnett's hardware store, to supplant him. Professor Shirley looked upon his transfer as an undeserved humiliation and refused to take charge of the fifth grade, appealing his case to the county and state superintendents.
Lack of Discipline.
    Members of the school board state that Professor Shirley was apparently incapable of maintaining discipline among his students, and that frequent meetings of the school board were necessary to adjust grievances with parents and investigate complaints. For being unable to control the unruly boys under him and not for any fault found with him as a teacher, his transfer to manage smaller scholars was determined upon as a solution of the difficulty and a new instructor engaged in Shirley's place. Mr. Shirley was not consulted in the matter and given no hearing before the board.
Many Pranks Played.
    There has been more or less trouble in maintaining discipline at the North School, where the elder boys seem to have above the average share of animal spirits. Some of the boys were suspended from school last year for unruly pranks and others have been in trouble frequently since. Among the boys was Harry Porter, son of School Director Porter, who was spanked with a wooden paddle by Professor Shirley for bad behavior last fall. At the Christmas tree celebration the instructor was presented with a beer bottle and only a week ago came the card-playing incident [above], when the sons of Councilman Merrick were suspended, but afterward reinstated.
    The children's petitions will have no bearing upon the actions of the school board, state its members, as it would be destructive of all discipline to grant it.
School Directors' Statements.
    "Mr. Shirley was simply incompetent to maintain discipline," stated Director Porter. "There was no fault with his teaching, but he kept the board in hot water all the time, and we had to hold special meetings frequently. He was unable to control his pupils. Mr. Shirley can appeal all he wants to. Our action is final."
    "Mr. Shirley was transferred because of his failure to properly control students and maintain discipline," said Director E. N. Warner. "We did not mean for him to quit teaching or to remove him, but transferred him to pupils easier to keep in line. The petitions will have no effect on the school board."
Shirley Tells His Side.
    "I don't believe in rushing to the papers with my troubles," said Professor Shirley, "but I don't think I have had a fair deal by the school board and think my transfer the result largely of  spite work. Naturally, I would not accept a position beneath that which I was engaged for.
    "I was not given a hearing by the school board. No charges were preferred against me and I was never
summoned in my own defense before the board. The transfer was a surprise to me, and I have appealed my case to the county and state school authorities.
    "I have nothing to do with the petition the school children are circulating in my behalf."
Superintendent Signs Silent.
    Superintendent M. B. Signs refuses to discuss the case, as he was not consulted in the matter. His resignation, to take effect at the end of the present school year, has already been presented to the board, and he is not a candidate for another term.
    One thing seems certain--Professor Shirley is much beloved by his pupils, though, as members of the board state, the pupils found it out too late in the day.
    The notice Professor Shirley received from the board contained the following:
    "We believe that you have failed to maintain proper discipline. For some reason unknown to us you have lost the respect and confidence of a large number of your pupils."
    When this notice was given the board had in their possession petitions signed by nearly all teachers in the North School and by every pupil in the class, asking that Professor Shirley be retained and expressing confidence in him.
Medford Daily Tribune, February 18, 1908, page 1

Pupils Circulate Petition Asking School Board
To Put Old Teacher Back at North School.

    "He's the best teacher we ever had. He hasn't been treated fairly and we're not going back to school unless he is put back,'' exclaimed pretty Berna Roberts and Ivy Boeck Tuesday morning as they were circulating a petition for the reinstatement of Professor J. W. Shirley as teacher in the eighth grade and principal of the North School. Determination was written upon the faces of the girls, and their eyes snapped as they talked of the wrongs they alleged had been heaped upon the professor.
Entire Class Is Out.
    "The whole class is out, except four or five, and they sympathize with us, and only stay in school because their parents make them," continued the fair young strikers. "And we're going to stay out too, unless we get our teacher back. We never had any trouble with him. We all like him. He's just fine."
    Almost the entire eighth grade class at the North School is circulating petitions for Professor Shirley's reinstatement. And the petitions are being generally signed by taxpayers and residents generally. Those circulating them are hard to resist. It's easier to sign.
But Few Pupils Remain.
    Monday the students walked out when they found they had a new teacher. There were but six or seven who remained. Tuesday some of these joined the strikers, while most of the others openly express their sympathy for the malcontents. Those remaining in school are Walter and Emerson Merrick, sons of Councilman Merrick, who were recently expelled for having playing cards in their possession and afterwards reinstated; Ina Cochran, daughter of School Director J. H. Cochran; Armond Taylor and Ethel Eifert.
    Among those circulating petitions for Professor Shirley's reinstatement are Berna Roberta, Ivy Boeck, Ruby Burke, Wray Currey, Allen Denton, Charles Boyden, Carrie Bundy, Harry Shoults, Buela McKeever, Kitty Clarke, Mary Stevenson, Myrtle McKee, Mabel Peil, Ward Kaiser, Vera Hendrickson, Meta Bish and Harry Hull.
    The petition reads as follows:
    "To the Honorable School Board of the Medford School District: We, the undersigned citizens of Medford School District No. 49, being well satisfied with the management and discipline of the school under Professor J. W. Shirley, hereby petition your honorable body to sustain said professor in the management and discipline of the school and to retain him in the employ of the district and in the position he has been filling until such time as you are satisfied that they are not giving general satisfaction to the patrons of the school."
    Among the signers are Mayor J. F. Reddy, C. H. Pierce, W. H. Bradshaw, W. B. Jackson, Charles King, L. L. Jacobs, M. Bellinger, M. Purdin, Dr. E. B. Pickel, J. F. Murphy, W. F. Isaacs, Ed Van Dyke, I. D. Phipps, W. H. Kentner, W. I. Vawter, F. E. Redder, J. S. Orth, W. T. York, Dr. E. R. Seely and many others.
Medford Daily Tribune, February 18, 1908, page 1

    Class spirit has many manifestations, and the other night the sophomores at the high school got out in the stilly hours and painted the walks near and around the high school with their class numerals and with the word "soph." The members of the other classes let it become known that the following night they intended to come out in force and remove the visible signs of superiority of the class of '11. However, they had no such intention, but the members of the soph class were not mind readers, and they turned out in force and spent several hours of a rainy day in guarding their handiwork. Members of other classes profess to believe that the laugh was on the second-year men.
Medford Mail, February 12, 1909, page 3

    Editor Mail Tribune: A few days ago,while wife and I were basking in the warm autumn sunshine at our front gate, discussing and admiring the many elegantly dressed ladies passing in their many varieties of autumn colors and costumes that would keep the rainbows guessing whether God gave all his beautiful colorings to the cold, green earth below or the starry heavens above, and to note the indescribable bevies of clean, rosy-cheeked school children leisurely passing to and fro, our attention was particularly attracted to a bright-appearing boy of some 12 summers, perhaps, who came sauntering aimlessly up with but little concern apparently, smoking the favorite cigarette, and stopped in front of us, and without introduction or any preliminary remarks, said: "Hello, Joe and Mary. Did you folks see that old guy of a rainbow of a man that just passed by with gray hair and beard and carrying a cane?" Well, kind reader, if a thunderbolt from a Southern Oregon sky could not have struck us with more force and astonishment than to hear the words just spoken from the innocent lips of this bright, mischievous youth, and our feelings were touched with sympathy and pity for the unlimited neglect of his home training and the lack of a judicious application of that old-time remedy, hazel and peach tree sprouts. But sweet memory at once recalled to mind my limited experience in home training of the boys and girls in the good old pioneer days of 50 years ago. Briefly told, we were taught what obedience means at home and at school and that never-to-be-forgotten indelible copy that manners makes the man, but does the above apply to this fast, busy age of attractive environments, and the knotty question arises, has there been any noticeable improvement in the teaching of manners, morals and the proper respect due to the aged gentleman and lady among the young boys and girls of the 19th century, which we think is the keynote and foundation of their future lives. But we leave this for the modern parent and educator to answer.
    Well, we looked our Young America boy acquaintance over pretty carefully and became fully convinced he was not a Medford boy, but one of those no, yes, hello, filthy cigarette, old guy class of boys that had perhaps been smuggled into our clean, virgin city of good manners and morality from some of the old pioneer mossback cities of the north, the home of reform schools and [line omitted] and many other fruit and society pests which, we note, are moving rapidly south to taint and infest and corrupt our beautiful indescribable Rogue River Valley of peace, power and plenty.
    In conclusion, permit your humble writer to suggest to the clean, bright, promising young boys of our young city to be prepared to meet all these vicious habits with the manly words, "No, sir."
Medford Mail Tribune, November 29, 1909, page 6

    A miniature hunter has been noticed recently in the neighborhood of the park carrying a .22-calibre rifle which was, at least on one occasion, loaded with the regulation cartridges. There is love inherent in us all, at the tender age of the small boy referred to, for firearms that we might emulate the example of David, our own T.R. and other hunters of more or less renown. The boy is human and must not be censured if, in his innocence, he goes forth to slay his enemy or hurt the mighty frog hidden under the sodden newspapers in the fountain basin. The fact remains, however, that innocence will not give back the sight to the ruined eye, or fill the little vacant chair. Even a Flobert in the hands of a child with hair still "bobbed" is a dangerous thing.

Medford Saturday Review, June 11, 1910, page 4

"Curfew" Law May Be Enforced.
    MEDFORD, Or., July 24.--(Special.)--To take measures to prevent boys and girls remaining on the streets late at night and to promote moral cleanliness in Medford, prominent women workers of this city will meet next Tuesday evening at the First Baptist Church and be addressed by District Attorney B. F. Mulkey.
Morning Oregonian, Portland, July 25, 1911, page 6

    The slingshot season is at hand, and the small boy is having a heap of fun. But he had better look out or the cops will get him. During the past few days youngsters all over the city have been investing in rubber bands and have been going after the birds--and windows. The police have taken a hand in the game, and the small boy had better take to the brush or get rid of the toy.
Medford Mail Tribune, August 19, 1911, page 3

    Three youthful members of a gang of petty larcenists which has been active in the city for some time past were caught in the act of burglarizing the home of Mrs. Faughts on the east side Thursday afternoon. After a night in the city jail the boys told where they had hidden their loot and were taken to Jacksonville and locked up in the county jail pending action by the juvenile court. All of the jewelry they stole Thursday afternoon was recovered.
    The three boys are Gilbert Cleveland, aged 16, Charles Reynolds, aged 13 and Roy Braumeister, aged 13. Cleveland seems to be the leader of the gang, and after his arrest began to throw the blame on the two younger boys. He was trapped in many lies, however.
    According to the police, the boys are members of a gang of youngsters who have stolen a large amount of goods from local residences. Reynolds was out on parole, having been in trouble some months ago.
Medford Mail Tribune, July 12, 1912, page 6

Juvenile Joy Riders on East Main Forced to Abandon Their Machine
    A new violation of the speed ordinance occurred on East Main Street yesterday morning, and the vehicle is now incarcerated in the city bastille.
    For some time past the police have received complaints that boys on coasters were making pedestrians tremble in fear as they dropped from the brow of the hill towards Bear Creek, with all the accelerated momentum that the decline would give them.
    Arriving at the hill last evening about 8:30 the police saw the terror of them all, a large straight-lined 1912 model, bearing down upon them. However the occupants of the improvised auto also caught sight of the minions of the law and, abandoning their joy cart, they rolled off into the street, making great haste to get over the hill and out of range. Not having anything else to arrest, Officer Cingcade attached the make-believe machine behind the automobile and proceeded to the city jail.
Excerpt, Medford Sun, August 9, 1912, page 1

Nell von der Hellen, 1899-1977
Recalling a "Fragment of Time" in the Rogue Valley
By Olive Starcher
Mail Tribune Special Writer
    "The past clings, it will not let go. It nudges with reminders and prompts, when least expected, with 'remember me? remember me!'"
    These lines from Barbara Fieldwalker's recently written Fragment of Time might have been meant for Nell von der Hellen. For when Mrs. von der Hellen read the front page of The Mail Tribune's Lifestyles section of Nov. 28, she was caught up in "remember me?"
    The page, entitled "The Bryden House," told how Bruce and Vicki Bryden bought and renovated the home at 1009 South Oakdale Avenue and how much they are enjoying the spacious old-fashioned home.
    "For me, it was a page out of 'This Is Your Life,'" Mrs. von der Hellen said, "for I lived with the Stewart Patterson family in that house for six months in 1914, and was a combination nursemaid and governess for their six-year-old son."
    Life was very different then. As Nell Thompson, Mrs. von der Hellen came to the Rogue River Valley with her family, and in a matter of a few weeks her father died. "In those days, there was no state or federal public welfare system, and most families would practically starve rather than accept charity," Mrs. von der Hellen said. "It was considered a disgrace--the concept was 'root hog or die.'"
    However, friends and neighbors would lend a helping hand, and so it was that a man named Stanton Griffis arranged that the very young Nell Thompson, one of six sisters, should be taken into the home of Stewart and Nanine Patterson and their small son, Stewart Jr., always called Sonny. Stanton Griffis later returned to the East and entered the State Department's foreign service, serving as U.S. ambassador to a number of countries.
    "It was a whole new world for me," mused Mrs. von der Hellen. "I was a hick--a country bumpkin from Arkansas." She recalls with a warm glow, after all the long years, how kind the Pattersons were. They employed a Japanese cook-butler, but the young nursemaid took her meals with the family and was even included when they entertained at formal dinners, which was frequently. "For these dinner parties, both men and women wore formal attire. The women's gowns were elaborate, and they wore jewelry--real pearls and diamonds and other gems."
    Often the guests included Mr. Griffis, who lived on what later was known as the Corning Kenly Orchard, and the popular novelist, Edison Marshall, who lived next door to the Pattersons. She remembers meeting and seeing many other men and women whose names have gone into the important agricultural and business history of this area.
    Her memory list includes Alfred and Leonard Carpenter, Harry and David (Rosenberg) Holmes, Sprague Riegel, Frank Preston Sr. (who had a ranch in the Applegate), the newspapermen Robert W. Ruhl and S. Sumpter Smith of . . . the Medford Mail Tribune, the merchant F. K. Deuel, Phillip Hammill, Ralph Bardwell, T. Slater Johnston, Corbin Edgell and many more.
    Some of these men were high-spirited bachelors and others had brought wives when they made the move to the romantic and fast-growing West. There was "the other Carpenter," George Boone Carpenter, and his wife, a sister of Jack Morrill. The George Carpenters and the Morrills both built elaborate country homes, and the Carpenter house, located south of Medford, later became a house of mystery as, lavishly furnished and filled with art, it stood unoccupied for many years.
    One woman who stands out in Mrs. von der Hellen's mind was Mrs. Alice Holloway, first president of the Jackson County Public Health Association, and mother of Mrs. Edgell. Another prominent member of what was called "the ranch colony" or the "Eastern Set" was Ed Carlton, whose brother was for years president of the then-mighty Western Union.
    Across the street on South Oakdale Avenue lived the Deuels and their daughters, Catherine and Susan. Nell Thompson thought of herself as Cinderella, and the Deuel daughters she fancied must be the most popular debutantes in the valley as she sat on the Pattersons' front porch and watched the young women come and go on their social rounds.
    The delight of Stewart Patterson's life was a big Pierce Arrow touring car. Frequently he took his son and nursemaid Nell for rides in the country, and one of his favorite roads was Kings Highway. Although it was then a narrow, rutted dirt road with only two houses along the entire stretch, Mr. Patterson, a lawyer by profession, drove "with great abandon," to quote Mrs. von der Hellen. Mr. Patterson had been known to boast that he once put the Pierce Arrow up to 60 miles an hour, in spite of the holes and ruts. However, the big car was his undoing, for he wrecked it one night, killing himself.
    Mrs. von der Hellen recalls that Seth Bullis became known first as "Mr. Copco" and later as "Mr. Medford." The only two medical men were Dr. Malmgren, who lived in the Phoenix area, and Dr. E. B. Pickel, Medford, who rode horseback on his rounds. The only hospital was in Ashland, near Swedenburg House, although a group of nuns operated a private hospital in a converted Medford home.
    How many know that those two men who had so much impact on the local fruit industry, Harry and David Rosenberg Holmes, in the early days were also sheep ranchers? Mrs. von der Hellen recalls: "When I first heard about the Rosenbergs they lived on Bear Creek Orchard and operated one small packing shed. Now I never drive by that huge, sprawling complex south of the city, with its hundreds of employees and nationwide business, that I don't think of that first little packing house. In 1914 they lived in considerable splendor and even had a Negro chauffeur for their limousine." One of Nell's early memories is of David Holmes Sr., driving sheep past the von der Hellen ranch in the Wellen (later Climax)  district where she lived after her marriage to Carl von der Hellen in 1917.
    When World War I was at its height, resentment against persons of German heritage ran very strong; the Rosenbergs adopted the maiden name of the mother--Holmes. [They took their stepfather's last name twenty years later, in 1939.] War stress also beset the von der Hellen family, but the proud men who bore that name weathered the war storm with the aid of Colonel Mims, who was once postmaster of Medford.
    In those early days, Jacksonville was the county seat, and what became known as the shortest railroad in the world ran between Medford and the county seat. Medford also had streetcars, with the tracks on Main Street. Between Medford and Jacksonville were huge prune orchards, and a large fruit dryer not only handled local fruit but prunes brought from the Roseburg area. Hundreds of acres of grain also was an important farm industry--agricultural land dominated the scene from Ashland to Grants Pass.
    When the von der Hellen family went to Jacksonville, it often was to visit the Jeremiah Nunan family, for the two were best friends. The Nunan mansion is still a landmark in Jacksonville. The Nunans' grandson, Donald Russell, later became Southern Pacific Railroad's top executive.
    Nell's employer, with his friends and cronies, had as their social headquarters the University Club located at the [northwest] corner of Main and Holly in the Vawter mansion. That house, first the home of William Vawter, important banker, and his family, later was moved to the [southeast] corner of Eighth and Holly. Mr. Patterson also played tennis, the rage with the well-to-do at that time, since a small country club located somewhere near town at the foot of Roxy Ann had tennis courts as well as a small golf course. The course had been laid out by H. Chandler Egan, who also designed the Rogue Valley Country Club course when it came into being.
    Later women of the Eastern Set formed the Colony Club, still located on Geneva Street and still in use, in order to have a meeting place and a headquarters, since so many of them lived in the country.
    When the Pattersons visited their close friends, the Frank Prestons, at the Applegate ranch, Nell went along and often she and Mrs. Preston's daughter, Billie Norris, would ride horseback together. Billie's father was the widely known author of the day, Frank Norris.
    Because Medford was conveniently located halfway between "the city"--San Francisco was always referred to as "the city"--and Portland, many celebrities of the time appeared here, usually in the Page Theater. Mrs. von der Hellen remembers the great ballerina Pavlova, the soprano Madame Schumann-Heink and Sir Harry Lauder.
    One memory leads to another, and she spoke of the musical Andrews family. Members of the Andrews family, talented singers and actors who formed and operated their own opera company, toured the entire country by train. There were three brothers, George, Ed and Will, Ed's daughter, Caroline, who later made a name for herself and enjoyed a considerable career in the Eastern states because of her lovely soprano voice, and Will's daughters, Grace Fiero, an actress of some note, and Edith, who was married to Jim Stevens of the company. Caroline and her husband, Richard Werner, Stevens and and Mrs. Fiero returned to Medford and were an important influence in the Rogue Valley until recent years.
    Nell Thompson celebrated her 15th birthday while living with the Pattersons, and realizing that she must complete her education, went to Bellingham, Wash. to attend the normal school there where an older sister had graduated.
    "Believe it or not, the sum of $50 saw me through an entire year at that school," Mrs. von der Hellen recalls. She had completed two years of high school before coming West, and at Bellingham completed her high school and normal school work in two years. She earned her room and board by living with a Bellingham family.
    Returning home, she took the little train to Jacksonville and applied to the county school superintendent for a teaching position, "fudging" a bit on her age since she was not quite 18. Her mother had purchased a small neighborhood store in the Derby area, and so the fledgling teacher accepted a position as the Derby teacher, one of two schools offered.
    She had four pupils that year, scattered from first grade to high school. School was for six months, and Nell was paid $75 a month. Of this, $25 went for board and room with a local family, and the rest went to her mother to help support the family. "Meals were mainly venison and the heaviest sourdough biscuits imaginable." An older sister, Ruth, served as Derby postmistress.
    In 1917 Nell became Mrs. Carl von der Hellen, and went to live on the family thousand-acre ranch. Her father-in-law, Hugo C. A. von der Hellen, who came to Oregon in 1890, served in the Oregon legislature for 12 years and helped to pass the bills to establish Ashland Normal School. Hugo built a big yellow ranch house on Meridian Road, near Agate Lake. "He was proud of the fact that the lumber, brought from Roseburg by wagon, was completely free of knotholes."
    In those days, ranchers made the long trip to town by wagon two or three times a year to buy sugar, flour and bolts of cloth which housewives made into the family clothing. For Hugo's wife, this meant ruffled white shirts for her husband. The years passed, Nell and Carl raised two sons and a daughter, and when the second World War threw the nation into turmoil, Nell saw her children all go into some branch of the service. Since she had an aptitude for nursing, Mrs. von der Hellen followed her daughter and sons by volunteering for the Army, was given nurse's training at Ft. Oglethorpe and later was assigned to Ft. Vancouver.
    When the war ended, Mrs. von der Hellen joined the staff of Sacred Heart Hospital, later served as office nurse for Dr. Charles Lemery and was on the staff of the Medford Clinic. An avid music lover and Shakespeare Festival fan, Mrs. von der Hellen reminisced about her brief fling as a radio writer when she wrote a dramatic series for station KMED which was produced and presented by local actors. In her retirement, she was a volunteer at Providence Hospital for a few years.
    Nell von der Hellen and her son, Robert, a former captain in the U.S. Air Force, are the only surviving members of her immediate family. She arrived for luncheon at Plymale Cottage in Jacksonville driving her faithful VW which registers a lot of mileage, and during the first interview and subsequent telephone conversations made lively and pertinent comments on current conditions in government, literature, education, the age of permissiveness and even animal life--she left the phone for a time to put out food for five raccoons which, along with three or four others, count on Nell for treats.
Medford Mail TribuneJanuary 23, 1977, page 2B

Boys and Girls Under 18 Years Affected
    Curfew will ring again in Medford, according to an announcement made Wednesday by Mayor W. W. Eifert, and hereafter boys and girls under the curfew age will have to be home nights or explain to the police. This enforcement has been long sought by the women clubs of the city, but no action was ever obtained, and young folks with little parental restraint did about as they pleased. The police were instructed to enforce the measure, and arrangements will be made to have the fire bell ring as a curfew.
    The ordinance provides "that between the first day of April and the first day of October, after the hour of 9 o'clock, and between the first day of October and the first day of April after the hour of 8 o'clock, it shall be unlawful for any person or persons under the age of 18 years to congregate, loiter or be upon the streets of Medford, unless accompanied by parents, guardians or a written note of permission."
Excerpt, Medford Sun, January 23, 1913, page 1

    During the noon hour at the Washington School Wednesday the boys proved their true marksmanship to several Medford citizens. During the whole hour the air was full of snowballs, and the thud of their landing on the unfortunate passerby was a joy to the schoolboy.
    A car belonging to the taxi company was so badly bombarded that a complaint was turned into the police by the driver, who later complained of having a bruised jaw.
    One boy who possessed a better arm than the rest picked a stiff hat off of a bald head across the street, causing a commotion of laughter to spring up in the Medford Hotel. Several people who pass that way going to and from work will no doubt be thankful when the snow melts, so he will not have to choose the long route home.
Medford Sun, January 23, 1913, page 2

    A cleanup of junk dealers who receive stolen property was started Wednesday morning when District Attorney E. E. Kelly had a warrant sworn out against "John Doe" Lerch, proprietor of the Lerch junk shop on South Front Street. Lerch to said to have bought stolen copper and brass from a gang of a dozen boys who have been encouraged in stealing. The boys claim that Lerch told them to get more of the stuff and that they never had any trouble in disposing of it to him.
    A search of the premises revealed several articles which were identified by owners, and there are a number of cases to be pushed against the junk man. The district attorney will probably prosecute Lerch on a charge of contributing to the delinquency of minors, and will follow up this case with more against certain other dealers as fast as evidence is obtained.
    It is held that Lerch's Fagin-like practices have encouraged boys to steal and that repeated reformations of this gang have always come to naught on account of the easy market offered for the stolen goods.
Medford Mail Tribune, February 19, 1913, page 1

Medford Junk Dealer Charged with Encouraging Boys to Steal.
    MEDFORD, Or., Feb. 20.--(Special.)--A startling story of youthful delinquency concerning half dozen boys, the oldest 16 and the youngest 11 years, and Henry Lerch, a junk dealer, charged with receiving stolen property, was told in Justice Court Thursday, when Lerch was bound over to the grand jury.
    The evidence, according to the prosecution, revealed a school for crime. The boys implicated are Floyd Wolgamott 16, Jimmy Collins 15, Edwin Haymond 14, Russell Hall 15, Homer Reynolds 11 and Gilford Reames 16. Six boys, all but two in short trousers, took the witness stand and without any hesitation told of their alleged dealings with Lerch in disposing of brass articles they stole.
    Jimmy Collins, aged 15 years, testified that he sold copper wire to the defendant and that he made a proposition to him to go to Gold Ray and steal copper wire, Lerch offering to furnish a horse and wagon to bring the plunder to Medford. Another youth testified that Lerch told him to bring all the copper he could and he would buy it. The youths, according to their testimony, stole and sold wash boilers, faucets, hose nozzles, electric coils, copper wire stencils, in fact anything made of brass or copper.

Morning Oregonian, Portland, February 21, 1913, page 9

    Henry Lerch, who is charged with having outrivaled Dickens' famous old Fagin in teaching the young boys of the city to steal, will be given his preliminary hearing before Justice of the Peace G. O. Taylor this afternoon at 4 o'clock. This hour was set in order that the boys, attending school, might be on hand to testify.
    Lerch was arrested by Acting Chief Cingcade Wednesday and for a time was lodged in the city jail, until he was released on a $500 bail. His attorneys, DeArmond & DeArmond, protested violently against having Lerch, a "business man," locked up even for a brief period.
    Prosecuting Attorney Kelly stated that the case he has against Lerch is complete. He declares that several of the boys who sold Lerch stolen goods will tell how Lerch encouraged them to steal the junk, and if copper or lead, to burn it so that it could not be recognized if found by the officers.
    Mr. Kelly states that much of the petty larceny in the city during the past two years is due to the fact that the youthful offenders had a ready market for their loot.
    Acting Chief Cingcade stated today that for some time the police have endeavored to "get the goods" on Lerch but each time something would come up to afford a getaway for Lerch.
Medford Mail Tribune, February 20, 1913, page 3

Medford Gang of Youthful Toughs Break into School
    A sextet of bad boy burglars, known to local fame in Medford as the Wattenburg gang, are perplexing prosecuting attorney E. E. Kelly. Under the leadership of Julius Wattenburg the youths are alleged to have entered the Medford candy factory and stolen a shoe box full of French chocolates, while the proprietor of the sweet foundry was at his Sabbath devotions.
    Yet another escapade was the raiding of the Washington School, where they rifled the pigeon roosts in the attic for squabs to vary the menu of confections. Nearby residents witnessed the breaking into the temple of learning before the loot of the pigeon roost. Other depredations are charged against them.
    Several of the boys have been frequent visitors to the district attorney's office, and have violated their promises to stay home nights and "be good." Now that the official clemency is exhausted, two of the youthful ringleaders will be sent to the state reformatory school.
Gold Hill News, December 20, 1913, page 1

Christmas Vacation.
Christmas vacation is almost here,
And boys and girls are full of good cheer;
They will greet Santa with a smile,
For he has come many a mile,
        Oh, the joys of vacation!
Now for the ride to Grandpa's farm,
Now for the romp in the big old barn;
Now for Grandma's turkey and pie;
We'll all eat till we nearly die.
        Oh, the joys of vacation!
When vacation is over and past,
And we have returned home at last,
Back to our study, rested and fine,
With pleasant thoughts of the good, good time.
        Oh, the joys of vacation!
--Margaret Harvey, age 9, Medford, Oregon.
"Public School Compositions," Oregon Teachers Monthly, January 1914, p. 279

    The marvelous effect of the anti-tobacco ordinance to minors is illustrated locally, by the fact that youths addicted to tobacco are not suffering any through inability to obtain it. The first week or ten days of the police order, there seemed to be some effect, but the boys are now puffing away out in the open with a careless abandon..

"Local and Personal," Medford Mail Tribune, March 14, 1914, page 5

Girls Leave Home
    Ruth Mark and Myrtle Crofoot, two 14-year-old girls living in this city, held in Grants Pass, were brought back this afternoon by probation officer Charles Gay for a hearing before Probation Judge TouVelle. The girls, who attended the public schools, became dissatisfied with school life and decided to join the carnival company and walked the entire distance to Grants Pass. They disappeared Monday afternoon. The father of the Marks' girl is a mechanic at the Madden & Hanley cannery at Wrangel, Alaska.
    This is the second case of young children running away from home this week.--Mail Tribune.
Jacksonville Post, May 30, 1914, page 3

Ah! Girls Find a Rival of Jitney
    MEDFORD, Ore., March 5.--Medford has a rival to the jitney bus which promises to revolutionize transportation in the Rogue River Valley. The rival is the roller skate.
    Several girls organized a roller skating party to Central Point last Sunday, and the affair was such a success that another excursion to Ashland is planned for next Sunday. Meanwhile, orders for highway skates have swamped local dealers.
Tacoma Times, March 5, 1915, page 7

    The city authorities are looking for a law somewhere in the Oregon statutes providing a penalty for parents who are negligent in the care of children when it comes to risking their lives. Chief Hittson is desirous of applying the law to a number of Medford fathers and mothers living on residence streets who allow their offspring to play in the streets of evenings, in the path of vehicles, while they sit on the front porch and view the proceedings.
    According to the police, on several streets, particularly North Riverside, the children play on the pavement, and at the approach of autos, with studied care stand in front of the moving cars, compelling the driver to stop or run over them. Though there have been several near-accidents, the police say, this is looked upon by any number of parents as a joke, and are greatly amused by the ire of the autoists, some of whom have burnt up tires in their efforts to stop.
    It is likely that some action will be taken at the next meeting of the city council to curb the annoyance.
Medford Mail Tribune, April 16, 1915, page 8

    Confessions implicating ten other Medford boys in wholesale criminal operations in this city were obtained this morning by juvenile authorities from Lloyd Wolgamott, George and Fred Anderson and Cecil Randall, on trial for chicken stealing. Wolgamott and the two Anderson boys were ordered committed to the Oregon state training school, and Randall was paroled to John Soutter. Other arrests are pending.
    According to the boys in custody, the operations of the gang extended from stealing milk bottles off back porches to plans to rob a bank in this city. One of the gang now being sought rapped Cecil Brown of the Brown & Hall pool hall over the head with a billiard cue last winter in an attempt to rob the place, leaving his cap behind. They were also the authors of holdups and the epidemic of robberies of grocery stores last winter. The gang was inspired to new deeds by reading of their escapades.
    The robbery of the grocery stores was to secure food for gang feasts. They had no leader, but were held together by a bond of community interests. All of Medford boyville knew of the operations of the gang, but remained silent, according to the approved rules of gangland.
    The revelations revealed by the confession will result in a campaign to prevent a repetition of the offenses. In planning for their future operations the gang entered Ewing's gun store and cached them along Bear Creek.
    Most of the petty thieving of the last six months is admitted by the gang. Wilson's second-hand store was a favorite robbing place, being entered no less than three times.

Medford Mail Tribune, April 17, 1915, page 1

    A number of Medford boys were arrested this week charged with chicken stealing and are being held for examination by the Juvenile Court. It is alleged that more than $200 worth of poultry has been taken during the last month.

"Local News," Jacksonville Post, April 17, 1915, page 3

Medford Graduates Sentenced for Raid on Store Signs.
    MEDFORD, Or., May 28.--(Special.)--Every boy in the graduating class of the Medford High School was ordered yesterday by Police Judge Gay to pull weeds in city parking strips until next Monday to expiate for a midnight raid on business house signs last Monday night.
    All the young men acknowledged their pranks and pleaded innocence of any wrong intent. The court, however, held that damage to property was no joke, and delivered sentences accordingly. Harold Grey, the youngest member of the class, was deputized to see that the work was done.
Morning Oregonian, Portland, May 29, 1915, page 1

The Way It Was
    To the Editor: "A Saturday night in Medford 60 years ago."
    Four of us boys, living in the Talent community, managed during the week to scrape together $4 or $5 each. We decided the thing to do was spend a Saturday night in Medford.
    We were in our late teens--myself, my cousin, Lewis Beeson, our friends Ted Jones and his older brother, Morris. Mrs. Jones was kind enough to let us use the family Model T, if Morris did the driving. We went into the Nash Hotel, engaged a room with two beds for a dollar each, walked across Main Street to Brown's Corner. Ed Brown, owner and manager, was a friendly, sociable person.
    We played a few games of pool there, walked to the Page Theater, took in the movie, then to the Optimo Cafe for pie and coffee. We retired to our room in the Nash Hotel. Breakfast at the Optimo, then home to take up where we left off.
    I remember quite a bit about Medford in those days. Prohibition was in effect. Ralph Jennings was sheriff, his two sons, Paul and Louis, deputies. I knew them well. They had moonshiners and bootleggers to contend with.
    "Shine Edwards" was the taxi man at Brown's. He was known for his ability to dispense moonshine. He would deliver on occasion. Doc Stephson and Fred Fry were barbers at Brown's.
    There was a colored midget shoeshine boy. I never learned his name. He was just the right height to shine shoes without stooping. Occasionally, Judge Kelly and Gus Newbury, a prominent attorney, would be seen walking along Main Street, the colored midget shoeshine boy walking between them. He would look up, they would look down as they conversed. Rather amusing.
    That's the way it was 60 years ago.
Ellis Beeson
Talent, Oregon
Medford Mail Tribune, March 23, 1982.   Beeson lived 3/11/1903-11/20/1989.

    Growing up on Grape Street was great [in the 1920s]. I remember so many things about this place. Oregon was so different from Montana--so many fruit trees--the land of plenty.
    In the summertime we played until morning until night. Dad shaved Dale's head--real cool--and Dale went barefoot all summer long. He had homemade guns and swords, stilts, scooters made from apple boxes and skate wheels. We put tin cans on the bottoms of our shoes to make a lot of noise. With shoes on, just press hard on an empty can and make it stick to your shoes. We didn't have many store-bought toys.

Verna's cousin Ralph Twight.
    All of us girls in the 1920s wore dresses--long stockings, button or lace-up shoes and long underwear in the wintertime--no jeans or slacks. I remember the infernal "bloomers" we girls wore. The elastic in the legs was forever loose, and we had a time keeping them up. We wore long cotton stockings held up by rubber bands cut from tire inner tubes. We wore our shoes until they had holes in them. Then we had them half soled at the shoe repair shop.
    We always had new clothes for the beginning of the school year. My mother always got our clothes way too big or too long for both Dale and me. She said we were growing so fast that we would grow into them. And we did. I remember a middy blouse I wore for many years. Also I had a cape with a pretty lining--one does not outgrow a cape.

From left: Verna and Dale Forncrook with Elmo and Virginia Dunlava, circa 1925
    One of the fun things we did in the summertime was to put on our bathing suits and run through the sprinkler on the lawn. Cooled us off for sure. Dad pitched a tent in the yard, and Dale and I slept out there in the summer months. That was before the big back porch was built.
    We kids looked forward to the ice man, who came around about once a week in the summertime. Mother would put out an ice card showing how many pounds of ice we needed. The ice man in his truck would chip off the amount needed with an icepick, then put a burlap sack on his shoulder and use ice tongs to carry ice into the house. There were no electric refrigerators at this time. We kids would gather the bits of ice in his truck and make an iced drink out of it by pouring juices over it. Real great.
    Some of the games were played were Hide and Seek, Run Sheep Run, Kick the Can, Ante Over (throw the ball over the house). We played Cops and Robbers, but I didn't like this game, as the boys were too rough.
    When it got to be dark outside in the warm summers we would sit on the curb under the street lights and tell ghost stories, and watch the bats fly near the streetlights. One by one we were called in to get ready for bed.
    Our house at that time was on a dead-end street--about ten kids were in that one block. I'll bet we were a noisy bunch. The open fields were a fun place. At times it was a wheat field and had a haystack--we played king of the mountain. At other times it was a place for a circus or a carnival. This was great so close to home. After the circus pulled out, the next day we kids would case the place for money or anything left there.
    We saved everything: String, cigarette foil, paper sacks and cigar bands for rings. Nothing was wasted. Entertainment in these early days was family gatherings, picnics and going to dances.
Undated typescript by
Verna Forncrook Wilson, circa 1997-2002.  Verna lived at 529 South Grape.

    Sixteen young men, members of the senior class of the Medford High School, were hauled before the police court on a charge of tearing down and hiding business signs of the city Tuesday night. As a penalty they will be compelled to spend one day pulling up weeds in the parking strip in front of the homes of the freshmen.
"Local News," Jacksonville Post, May 29, 1915, page 3

    The authorities are looking for a party of small boys who went swimming in Bear Creek Wednesday afternoon, and disported on the bank in nothing but their original garb. A woman made a protest to the boys, and the sights became more unseemly, after the manner of young America.
"Local and Personal," Medford Mail Tribune, June 9, 1915, page 2

John Billings, November 23, 1978 Medford Mail Tribune
Christmas 'Fun' Was in the Work
Billings Recalls Ashland Boyhood

Mail Tribune Staff Writer

    ASHLAND--Farm boys in the Ashland area didn't take much time off for Christmas during the years between 1919 and the early 1930s, longtime resident John Billings recalls.
    He came to Ashland in 1919 after the death of his father and mother in Gold Beach. They left John and three younger brothers to be divided among relatives.
    "I remember at home, at Gold Beach, we always had a Christmas tree," Billings said. "We put candles on the tree. My dad was an attorney in Gold Beach. We had little holders for the tiny candles. And we always strung popcorn--in great, long garlands around the room and all over the tree.
    "When I was in first grade in Gold Beach, we made little chains of colored paper and we strung those chains on our tree," Billings said.
    "The first Christmas I came here--in 1919--it was the first time I saw snow. It was quite a treat!"
    John's new father had a sled. John, because he was the only child in the family, inherited it. He still has it on the farm northwest of Ashland.
    "It was a homemade sled with steel runners," said Billings. "All of my kids used it, too."
    Christmas morning on the Billings' farm was just another workaday morning. After hearing his father rummaging around downstairs and the clank of the stove door in the kitchen, John would creep out from under the heavy-quilted bed, jump into his chilled bib overalls, pull on a thick sweater and make his way down the narrow wooden stairs.
    His father, similarly dressed, would be standing with his back to the roaring wood stove, warming his hands clasped behind him. While John pulled on heavy woolen stockings which had been warming near the stove, his dad would explain the chores he wanted John to do.
    Then man and boy would sit on the slatted wooden bench at the back porch and pull on muddy rubber boots. Properly shod, they would clomp down the wooden steps into the frosty morning air, the stars like chips of ice in the ink-black sky.
    As his father made his way out to the big barn to check on his prize bulls, John would lope over the frozen ground to the milk barn.
    Bending down just inside the creaking barn door, the boy would heft a big burlap sack of grain onto his back. Straightening up, he would reach out to grab the smooth handle of the pitchfork. Then he would spear some hay and toss it onto the feed trough, sprinkling some grain on top.
    Meanwhile, his father would have been busy herding the cows single file through the doors in the other side of the barn.
    Blowing on his hands to get them warm, John then would walk to a barn stanchion and lift the shiny milk pail off one peg and a small stool off the other. Soon milk would be "zinging" into the pail.
    After milking, John--his breath coming in white puffs--would wash the pail and then his face at the pump near the house.
    His chores complete, John would find his mother up and bustling around the kitchen. The roasting chicken already would be filling the kitchen with its rich, steamy aroma. Perched on a high wooden stool by the drainboard and kitchen sink, Mrs. Billings would peel apples for the Christmas dinner apple pie. Long ribbons of red peeling would curl off her paring knife. She would reach out quickly and slap John's fingers as he reached for slices of apple sprinkled with sugar and cinnamon.
    Removing his woolen jack and scarf, John would sit down at the kitchen table, and his mother would deftly flip fried eggs and bacon onto his large plate.
    The blue-eyed, rosy-cheeked youngster would gulp down some milk, fork through his breakfast and hurry on stockinged feet into the living room-dining room.
    There, filling the room with pine-scented fragrance, stood a huge Christmas tree. John had helped his father cut the tree from the high hills above the present site of Jackson Hot Springs. Anxiously, John would stoop over to check the presents under the tree.
    "We didn't have many toys then," he said. "We would get socks, practical things. Times were hard on the farm.
1918 Dodge Brothers touring car
A 1918 Dodge Brothers touring car
    "When we went to town for the little Christmas shopping we did, we went in our old 1918 Dodge touring car with a canvas top. There would be horses tied to hitching places along the street. Sometimes a car would backfire and the horses would rear up," Billings said.
    "I can't remember any community Christmas festivities. I think people were too busy working. The schools would have programs.
    "The Methodist Church had special Christmas cantatas. They always had wonderful choirs there. There would be a manger scene, a Christmas play. All the children got an orange and a small sack of candy afterwards.
    "I do remember one thing I got for Christmas. It was an Overland wagon. It had sideboards and wheels with wooden spokes. Still have it. Remember I pulled it behind my bicycle one summer over to Fred Rapp's, on the corner of Rapp Lane near Talent. Fred was a big watermelon raiser. Put a big watermelon on the bed of the wagon and took it home."
    Years later, Billings the grown man slowly got up from his chair and hurried to tend his car before he got a parking ticket. There was a distant look in his eyes as he left.
Medford Mail Tribune, November 23, 1978, page 5

October 2, 1920 Medford Mail TribuneTULL BOY AFTER VILLA,
    Mrs. Chas. Tull left last evening for Portland to bring back her runaway daughter and son, who left here Sunday and stopped over in Portland, where they were taken in charge by the police, en route to join their father at Prineville. Relative to their running away and apprehension, Wednesday's Journal of that city had the following account:
    "Trailing adventure, movies and Villa, Juanita Tull, 13, and her fire-eating brother, Otis Tull, 13, who were reported missing Sunday night from Medford, were discovered by officers Hill and Cahill Tuesday night in a rooming house at 224½ Morrison.
    "Sheriff Terrill reported to the Portland police Monday that the two children had disappeared, giving a description of them and furnishing clues. At first it was feared that they had gone to California to invade the moving picture industry, for Juanita, who has won local fame for the beauty of her hair, it is said, was convinced of her adaptability to the screen and had been considering an artistic career for some time.
    "Otis was not without ambition himself, and spoke quite freely this morning of his communications with the notorious Villa, and told of his plans to join the habitual insurrectionist in his southern retreat. Otis admitted that he was a relative of Dempsey, it is said, and explained his unusual pugilistic qualities in that way. His contempt for legal processes and agents was paramount, it was said.
    "Mrs. Ella Tull, the mother of the two adventurers, was afraid the children had been kidnapped by an unidentified woman with whom they had been associating at the Ashland Round-Up. This theory was strengthened when it was discovered that three tickets had been sold to California to a woman and two children. Money for the trip was obtained on a check sent to the children by their father.
    "The children said they were on their way to Prineville, where their father has been for several days on business, and as a prelude to their adventures decided to stop over in Portland."
Medford Mail Tribune, July 10, 1919, page 6


    A back to normalcy movement has been started in the high school through spite work on the part of the girls towards the boys and the youths on their part retaliating in kind, and there is no telling just where the feud will end, but so far it has convulsed all Medford with laughter. The superintendent and faculty try to put on serious faces and frown on the extravagant action of both sides, but ever and anon glide into some out-of-the-way nook to give vent to their real feelings.
    Recently Miss Margaret Cottrell, member of the faculty who has charge the Y.W.C.A. activities, asked the boys to write their opinions of the modern garb, style and facial makeup of the girls. The masculine element of the school went at this very distasteful task with avidity and use of strong and superlative language. What they didn't say about the girls wearing short skirts, low necks, hair over ears, fancy stockings, paint and powder would not be worth reading.
    These written answers were read to the girls by Miss Cottrell yesterday with the consequence that the fair ones waxed more indignant the longer they talked and thought over the horrid criticisms. Hence it was that [as] a rebuke to this masculine criticism and to show the boys that they were not so smart as they thought themselves, about fifty of the young ladies came to school this forenoon garbed in the plainest and most old-fashioned clothing they were able to find, hair done up plain and carefully brushed back from the ears, and with an absence of powder, paint and rouge from their faces.
    Did this faze the boys? Far from it. They had a card up their sleeves, owing to the fact that someone had tipped them off last night to the girls' plans. Hence they, too, appeared at school today in a very plain garb, wearing ranch or hunting boots, old-fashioned turndown collars and the like. Some of them were so grotesquely costumed that they were ordered home by the faculty.
    The next move is up to the chagrined girls.
    "I fear it won't last," said Miss Cottrell today, "but the girls look very sweet and the absence of makeup is particularly refreshing."
Medford Mail Tribune, March 24, 1921, page 8

    Oldtimers who spent their childhoods in the Applegate drainage recall chewing quids of "bam," presumably a relict Midwestern pronunciation of "balm." The plant has been identified as Eriodictyon californicum--yerba santa or mountain balm--a mild stimulant.

    A number of high school boys took part in a raid on a private party on South Orange Street the first of the week. They entered the back porch of the house where the party was being held and unscrewed the fuse plugs in the switch block, thereby leaving the party in darkness. After darkening the house they departed with refreshments, but not before one of them was identified. Through the identification of one of the party Chief of Police Timothy rounded up the entire lot, numbering eight, and they replaced the loss of the refreshments and apologized to the hostess.
"Local and Personal," Medford Mail Tribune, April 14, 1922, page 3

    A group of high school boys who planned a little innocent fun the first of the week have reached the conclusion that the fun was not quite so innocent as it first appeared and have learned that discretion is the better part of practical joking, especially when trespassing, housebreaking, burglary and other crimes are liable to be involved.
    The boys got wind of a private party of fellow students which was to take place at a residence on South Orange Street, and all arrangements were made for a raid. The car with the raiding party stopped. The raiders dismounted and prepared to carry the works by stealth. The back porch was entered and fuse plugs in the switch block of the lighting system were unscrewed, leaving the house in darkness during which the amateur porch climbers escaped with a major portion of refreshments which had been incautiously left on the back porch.
    One of the desperate gang of confection pirates was recognized in the getaway and he was reported to the police. Chief Timothy became active on the case and the boy was interviewed, at first refusing to divulge any details of the great cake robbery or the names of his nefarious accomplices. He was then taken to the district attorney's office and questioning continued which led to the final action of the band, which it is understood have reformed.
    The boy who was recognized and seven brothers of the "Snatcha Bita Pi" fraternity went to the house where the outrage had been performed and made good the loss of the delicacies, in addition to apologizing profusely to the hostess.
Medford Mail Tribune, April 14, 1922, page 3

    A gang of boys, whose alleged thieving operations have extended over six months, and ranged from stealing milk bottles off back porches, to near burglary, was rounded up by the police last night and today. The members of the gang, all of whom have confessed, the authorities say, are as follows:
    Harold Penni, age 17, employed as a night dishwasher at the Optimo.
    George Brown, age 16.
    Beryl Brown, brother of George, age 13.
    Chauncey Hooker, age 17.
    Theron Martin, age 14.
    Lawrence Hughes, age 12.
    William Tabor, age 16.
    Penni and George Brown were caught redhanded about 2 o'clock this morning, rifling automobiles left standing on North Central Avenue, and were taken to the police station, where the youths confessed and implicated the other members of the gang. This morning, all the lads were taken to the office of District Attorney Rawles Moore, where the conference soon resolved itself into a contest to see which could tell the most on the others. They were taken to Jacksonville, where they are now confined in the women's ward of the county jail, with the exception of the two younger boys, who are in the custody of Sheriff Terrill. They will be given a hearing in the juvenile court Saturday afternoon.
    According to the authorities, the various members of the gang confessed to a long list of depredations, including the stealing of two gasoline books from the C. W. Ashpole automobile, the rifling of tills at Truax's and Louie's Cash Grocery, the stealing of money from check rooms at Gold Hill and the fair grounds dance pavilions, and pillaging of autos, wherever they found them, of whatever articles that were not nailed down.
Deny Housebreaking
    George Brown and Penni admit, according to Night Officer Joe Cave, of prowling around the Harvey Fields home on the East Side Tuesday night, but all deny that they broke into any homes.
    The detention of the youths comes upon the heels of a petition circulated Wednesday, in which residents of the East Side requested that the city put on a special policeman at their expense for protection. W. A. Gates says that that portion of the city was terrorized by the nightly visits, and fearful of the marauders, who operated with startling boldness.
    The authorities are endeavoring to connect up the arrests with the robbing of the Vernon Vawter, W. F. Biddle and Fred Wahl homes on the East Side during the last summer, and attempted entrances of other homes, including those of Ed G. Brown, Harvey Fields and W. A. Gates. The East Side seems to have been a favorite field of operation.
    The authorities alleged that Hooker, oldest of the lot, and between 17 and 18 years of age, was the leader of the band, which seemed to have a cooperative plan, as each knew of the others' alleged depredations. It is alleged that Hooker received a "cut" out of all money stolen, and sold a gasoline book for half a dollar.
Arrested Robbing Car
    Penni, arrested early this morning while robbing a car, works until 1 o'clock, and with George Brown is alleged to have operated in the early morning hours. The remainder of the gang perpetrated their offenses by day and in the evening. Penni's parents live in this city, but he has not been living at home. The authorities also say that the folks of the remainder have made unavailing efforts to have them go to work. Hooker appeared in several bouts at the Medford Athletic Club, before that institution went smash, and bore the nickname of "Champion Pearpicker." Lawrence Hughes, age 12, the youngest alleged member of the band, is the son of W. D. Hughes, who formerly operated a vulcanizing establishment on North Grape Street. All the parents of the boys are hard-working and upright citizens, and the developments come as a distinct and regrettable shock.
    Further confessions and developments are expected, with further investigations now under way.
Medford Mail Tribune, September 21, 1922, page 6

    Peon pants have made their appearance in Medford at last. It occurred on election eve, and not long after the pants appeared they disappeared from the person of the wearer.
    Paul Luy, local high school student, appeared at the Nat dance Tuesday evening in a pair of white corduroy trousers slit up the sides and gaudily trimmed with red velvet, black lacings, black tassels and black buttons. A black sash was an important item among the accoutrements which were worn with the trick trousers.
    A meeting of the lettermen at the high school was in progress, and the wearers of the "M" got wind of the atrocious attire of one of their fellow students.
    They swarmed into the ballroom and abducted the wearer of the bell-bottomed breeches, taking him to a convenient spot and divesting him of the trousers, which were later hung up in the high school assembly so that all might know the fate of the Swedish cavalier who tried to disguise as a Spaniard.
    The towheaded toe-tripper of the toreador trousers was forced to take refuge in his overcoat and made his way home with his shapely limbs exposed to the vulgar gaze of the public.
Medford Mail Tribune, November 8, 1922, page 8

    One day last week I had to spend several minutes waiting for a freight train to pass our one business street, and while admiring the beautiful box cars that seemed to stretch a mile in both directions, two young ladies edged their way through the crowd and stopped directly in front of me. They were young; very young; possibly 15 or 16. Their hair was bobbed and curled. Their eyebrows were penciled, their cheeks powdered and rouged, and their lips crimsoned into a Cupid's bow. Tight-fitting sweater; skirt that barely reached the knees and silk stockings completed the equipment. They were talking a blue streak when I first noticed them. This is all I unwilling overheard.
    "Jack brought me a box of Murads last night. But I don't like them. I like Turkish better."
    "Oh, does your mother let you smoke?"
    "No indeed. But whenever I smoke I just burn some incense afterwards and Mother never notices it."
    Now I haven't any comment to offer. I don't know what to do to stop 16-year-old girls from smoking. I just happened to hear this on the streets of Medford. Ben Lindsey of Denver says the flapper is needed to assert the rights of youth over those of age.
    Perhaps he is right. I wonder.
B. F. Lindas, "Heard and Seen on City Streets,"
Medford Clarion, April 27, 1923, page 2

    The Medford High School fight was greatly enjoyed (?) by the "country rubes" at Trail Tuesday, also the damage done at that place, where they broke windows, fences, gas barrels were tipped over, faucets broken, gas spilled and yards littered where students were sick.
"Trail Items,"
Medford Mail Tribune, June 1, 1923, page 10

Don't Carry Torpedoes in the Hip Pocket
    Bobby Short, age nine years, was the first victim of the 1923 Fourth of July bombardment last Saturday, while playing with a number of other boys on South Central Avenue. Bobby carried a handful of what are known in juvenile circles as "giant torpedoes" in his back pants pockets. He stopped over. Richard Allen, a playmate, playfully slapped him across the hip pocket with a pine board. There was a loud concussion, and Master Short emerged from the detonation with his trousers ablaze. The rest of the crowd were thunderstruck by the turn of events, and offered no assistance as the incipient blaze gained headway. A lady attracted by the noise came out on her front porch and rushed to the rescue. She sat Bobby down on a freshly sprinkled lawn and sent him home, slightly sobered by the celebration.
Medford Mail Tribune, June 18, 1923, page 2

Want Day Nursery.
    To the Editor:
    Is there anyone in this city philanthropically inclined and sufficiently fond of children to open a "day nursery"?
    In so many places there are institutions of this nature, which provide a boon to mothers who are obliged to be breadwinners. Portland, for instance, has one near the Ladd school, and although I never had occasion to make use of it, there it is understood to be an ideal place for children out of school hours and little ones under school age, who are supervised by certificated nurses and teachers of kindergarten, until the parents take them home after their day's work is done.
    There must be several mothers in Medford who would readily take advantage of a place of safety for their little ones who have no place to go and nothing special to do until Mother comes home to find them either in danger or in mischief. Many a parent would be relieved from moments of dreadful anticipation while trying to concentrate on her work if there were a day nursery in this town where the little ones could be happy, and the mother's mind at ease.
Medford Mail Tribune, March 15, 1924, page 4

Childhood Memoirs of Rogue River Valley
By Opal L. Rogers
Niece of Mrs. Ida Henderson
4550 9th Avenue
Sacramento 17, Calif.
    White oaks. What pleasant memories those words bring back to me. As a child I played beneath their spreading branches, rested in the forks of their great arms, and gathered acorns to make fairy cups and saucers. How the squirrels loved to run up their massive gray trunks and out into the labyrinth of their leafy tops, which, to a child, seemed to stretch up and up into the blue dome of heaven. I would sit for hours, practically becoming a part of the old post upon which I was perched, just so I could watch the antics of the little animals. And I was usually rewarded, for they loved the meaty bitter-sweet nut of the acorn and wouldn't stay away for long. They would stuff the pouches of their cheeks full with them--looking for all the world like they had a bad case of mumps--and with a frisk of their tails away they would scamper to their burrows to replenish their larder.
    Each spring the carpet of grass beneath the oaks was spangled with golden buttercups, while higher up in the hills among the fire and pines bloomed the birdbills, chaparral lilies and baby blue eyes, from which I would gather sweet-scented bouquets to decorate our home which was located directly at the foot of one of the Coast Range mountains in Southern Oregon. There, too, grew the shiny-leaved, red-barked madrone trees, whose clusters of wax-like blossoms attracted the bees from miles around, and when these blossoms matured into brilliant vermilion berries, along came the blue jays, yellow-hammers and cedar waxwings to eat to their hearts' content.
    Directly across the road from our house was a stretch of land we always referred to as the "pasture." Why, I do not know, for it was completely filled with every size, shape and kind of rock, and was unfit for pasturing of any kind. I believe in some long-gone age a mighty glacier must have dumped its debris at this particular spot, and this being the case it made an ideal place for a little girl to play eons of years later. Moss grew in abundance in the shady hollows, and pink and white star flowers sprang up here and there unexpectedly on their slender stems. I would gather small shells and place them around and among the ferns and moss, making minute stepping-stone paths of the pearl-like rosettes. At the beginning of summer the little canyons between the rocks were white with snowdrops--a flower, although small in size, [that] makes up for this in its profuseness and exquisite odor. I would choose a densely blooming spot, lie down among the blossoms, and while watching the big creampuffs of clouds go sailing across the sky I would imagine I, too, was drifting on a scented cloud. As the days progressed, along came the golden poppies and purple camas, proudly flaunting their royal colors for anyone who might stop and enjoy.
    On the opposite side of the "pasture" from where we lived flowed the Rogue River, which always lived up to its name. It would fool you with its placid green pools, where bright orange crawfish scooted here and there by tail propulsion, where little silver minnows darted in and out mischievously, and where the hardy alder trees dusted the surface of the water with the yellow pollen that sifted from crinkly tassels suspended from their branches. Then a little farther on the Rogue would decide to be capricious, and breaking into foaming cascades it would send its spray high into the air, gurgling and chuckling, and churning itself into a lather over rock worn smooth with ages of continuous wear. I loved to splash barefooted through its shallows, sometimes venturing out on its mud flats so that the soft clay, like warm butter, would ooze up between my toes. Then again I would clamber over its rocky shores, fighting my way through the brambles that grew close to the water's edge and enjoying the damp marshy scent that only those who have lived by running water will remember.
    Quite suddenly the glory of summer would fade. Autumn would come calling in her gay dress of yellow, orange and red. The squirrels would deplete the supply of nuts, and the birds would head for points south. I would then watch anxiously for the first signs of snow. Usually it caught me unawares, and some mornings in early November I would slip out of bed to find a silent world wrapped in cellophane and cotton batting. The green-blue symmetry of the firs and the stateliness of the pines would then be draped in the haughty robes of winter, which crowned them with the sparkling raiment of diamonds and the soft richness of ermine. Here and there the little black caps of the chickadees could be seen bobbing among their branches and chirping their own names over and over again in a plaintive key. These little winter birds were the harbingers of heavy snows in the mountains, for they would always come to the lowlands when driven out from their usual haunts by deep drifts. How I would revel in it all, and marvel that the deft paintbrush of nature could change the azure and cream pastels of summer into the black and white etchings of winter.
    Although twenty years have gone by since that time, and the old house beneath the mountain is gone, the white and green and gold of those hills and vales, down through [which] the Rogue frolics joyously with the breezes rippling its surface and sighing gently through the great trees, will live forever, unfading in my memory.
Central Point American, May 3, 1945, page 3

    ASHLAND, Feb. 17.--Three hardy adventurers, California bound, were rapidly transformed into three, not very penitent, small boys Saturday night, when they were arrested by Chief of Police George McNabb, on a charge of automobile theft.
    The youngsters, Julien Dailey, 12, Fred Reavis, 14, and Elmer Howell, 11, all of Medford, left their homes Friday afternoon. They told McNabb they walked as far as Talent Friday, and slept in a box car there that night. Saturday morning they came to Ashland via their box car bedroom but were able to alight when their train pulled into the local yards.
    Deciding that freight trains were too slow to suit their ideas of travel, the three youths picked up a Ford, owned by Ben Bowers of this city. Driving about the city for a short time, they ran short of gas, and decided to refuel before attempting the climb over the Siskiyous. Afraid to drive the car to a service station, they left it on B Street and attempted to carry the gas to it. Three trips were made for gasoline before it was decided they had enough to get them safely out of town.
    In the meantime, Bowers had reported the loss of his car to McNabb. The chief and one of his aides took a short hunt and found the missing vehicle, with the youths nearby. At first the youthful adventurers denied any knowledge of the theft of the car, but under a barrage of questions, Dailey confessed. He told how Reavis had sold his bicycle to finance the trip to the sunny climate of California, how they had nearly frozen Friday night in their box car bedroom, and how a paper sack full of cookies had furnished them their only meal.
    After being questioned further, the boys confessed that they were members of the gang who had broken into Eads' second hand store in Medford and removed a number of guns a few nights ago.
    Yesterday morning the three boys were taken to Jacksonville, where they will remain, awaiting disposition by the juvenile authorities.
Medford Mail Tribune, February 17, 1925, page 1

Wants Children's Playgrounds.
    To the Editor:
    Preceding an excellent program, prepared by overworked teachers of overly crowded school rooms in the Roosevelt School on Thursday evening, the board of education was thanked for allowing the parents and teachers to finish and furnish an assembly room in the Roosevelt building. Through some oversight, I am sure, the board did not thank the parents and teachers for their work and donations, nor for the expense saved them and the taxpayers in general through this work.
    Would it not have been wonderful could this money and work have gone towards a gymnasium for the grade schools or impossible utopian idea, a public play ground! This is the only town of its size on the coast which has no place for children to play during the hot summer months. Various organizations in Medford have tried to put the play ground over and failed. Should there be such a divergence of interests between assembly rooms for parents and play grounds for children?
    Medford, February 20.
"Communications," Medford Mail Tribune, February 21, 1925, page 4

    Gilford White, age 14, living with his parents in Jacksonville, who ran away from home early last week, was found by Woodland, Calif., authorities this morning. He was last seen near Phoenix riding his wheel south on the Pacific Highway. Sunday messages were sent out asking that a watch be kept for the lad. The boy will be returned to Medford by auto stage.
    Authorities of Southern Oregon and Northern California are looking today for Gilford White, 14, living with his parents in Jacksonville, who ran away from home last week and was last seen near Phoenix, riding his wheel. He was wearing a pair of overalls, a blue shirt and wide-brim straw hat, and is five feet, one inch in height, weight 82 pounds.
    According to his uncle, E. R. White, the boy ran away first about two weeks ago, and was returned home. His second flight, he says, was due to "some little mischief that frightened him, and he is now afraid to stop going." The uncle thinks the boy is still in the county.
    Since his last disappearance, Gilford has proved elusive. He was found by Chief of Police Adams, but when that official went to telephone his parents the lad disappeared. The uncle says that he has been close to the lad several times, but was never able to catch him.
    The father of the boy is F. E. White, a driver of a motor stage between this city and Roseburg.
Medford Mail Tribune, August 3, 1925, page 3

    Two boys not over 12 years of age, giving their surname as Hunter and their father's name as E. R. Hunter of Medford, were stopped in Roseburg yesterday as runaways from home. The above information was phoned this morning to Chief of Police Adams, who is now endeavoring to locate E. R. Hunter, but as he can locate no man by that name who is the father of the boys, he is quite puzzled over the situation.
    According to the Roseburg juvenile officer the two boys gave their ages as 14 and 16 years. The two claim they had worked in and around Medford, and soon as they had received their pay promptly left the city and had proceeded as far north when stopped by the Roseburg officials.
    Two other Medford boys seized recently with the wanderlust fever are now confined in the state training school, according to the following telegraph news sent out from Dallas, Oregon, last Saturday:
    "Carl Pitts and Glen Stringer, each 12 years old, were committed to the state training school by Judge Hawkins. They ran away from their homes at Medford. Their parents refused to come after or send for the boys."
Medford Mail Tribune, August 3, 1925, page 3

    Mrs. Ossie Bennett and Mrs. Roy Saxon, sisters, are held in the county jail at Jacksonville, and Clyde Lacy, 17, is held in the city jail at Ashland as ringleaders in a petty thieving ring that has been operating in the southern end of the county for several weeks, and involves an entire family.
    According to the authorities, Delbert Lacy, 15, confessed Sunday evening that he and three  younger brothers were induced by threats of their sisters and older brother to commit robberies of a minor nature and bring the loot to the family home.
    A charge of burglary will be preferred against the married sisters and Clyde Lacy. The other, Mrs. Effie Lacy, and four younger sons are under police surveillance but not in jail.
    Sunday afternoon and evening the Ashland police and Sheriff Jennings searched the home and vicinity of the Lacy abode and recovered, it is said, articles that have been stolen during the last three months. The younger boys under questioning told the authorities of alleged crimes and caches. A trunk full of articles, asserted to have been stolen, was also recovered.
    The home of the Lacys is at 483 Granite Street, Ashland. Clyde Lacy is said to have been entangled with the law before.
    A preliminary hearing will be called as soon as the authorities finish their investigation of the strange case.
Medford Mail Tribune, September 15, 1925, page 3

    Receiving 50 cents a day for his criminal operations as a burglar, according to authorities, 13-year-old Richard Dunn, a runaway school boy from Oakland, Calif., was arrested yesterday afternoon with his employer, H. D. McElroy of Los Angeles, at Gold Hill where the boy had attempted to filch a purse from the cash register at Kell's garage, but being caught by the proprietor was held with McElroy until the arrival of Deputy Sheriffs Lewis and Paul Jennings. McElroy was driving a Chevrolet touring car loaded with loot from alleged burglaries. Several articles such as guns have already been identified as stolen property.
    A search for the boy, according to Sheriff Jennings, has been carried on by his parents, and descriptions of him have been radiocast by broadcasting stations near Oakland. He disappeared from home over a week ago, driving a Ford, to later join forces with McElroy, who had been driving a stolen Oldsmobile. The meeting is presumed to have taken place by chance. The two are also said to have stolen a Chevrolet in which they were driving when arrested.
    They arrived here by way of Klamath Falls, taking the Oregon-California highway from Red Bluff. At Malin the boy said they discarded the California licenses on their car to replace them with Oregon licenses, registered to a Wasco County car.
    The boy, very small even for 13 years, was taken to Ashland this afternoon to give a statement in regard to three guns said to have been stolen from an Ashland establishment several nights ago, and which were found in the loot. Other articles found included one holster, two hunting knives, camp ax, two flashlights, four tire gauges, safety razor, three pair of new shoes, two men's and one boys', several pairs of stockings, four boxes of candy and other articles of lesser worth.
    Fifty cents a day, according to the boy, was paid him by McElroy for entering business establishments to steal, while he waited outside. The boy's small size gave him access to buildings through small openings. During the past week, McElroy is said to have received over $250 for stolen goods.
Medford Mail Tribune, May 4, 1925, page 8

Balloon Trousers Pushed into Background by Decorated Sweat Shirts
    The newest fad to hit the high school youth, replacing the much-talked-about balloon trousers, is now popular with the local high school boys.
    Although the new craze has been popular on the University of Oregon and Oregon Agricultural College campuses for several months, it has but recently been in vogue here, but has spread like wildfire during the period it has been popular.
    Sweat shirts, usually used by athletes as protection against cold during their practice periods and during the games in which they were not playing, furnish the body for the new garment.
    Then comes the cartoonist, with his varicolored inks. A snappy cartoon on the back of the shirt, with the owner's initials or nickname printed above the cartoon, completes the garment.
    At Thanksgiving, the fad was practically unknown here. When the former Ashland students returned for the holiday from their various schools, the high school youths were quick to pick up the fad, and the following day half a dozen of the sweat shirts, highly decorated, were to be found. Now they are in great demand, and the clothing stores are busy supplying the demand.
    And the poor cartoonists. They are working overtime to complete the cartoons.
Ashland Daily Tidings, December 9, 1925, page 1

    Hard cider has its drawbacks, especially when surreptitiously taken, think four Ashland high school boys, arrested by local police Saturday night at the Rogue River Valley Canning Company, where the boys had appropriated five quarts of the beverage by bailing it from the large vinegar tank, where the cider was fermenting. The four were severely reprimanded by authorities this forenoon and given into the custody of their parents.
    The method of procedure used in taking the cider is simple, say police. The large cannery building is open and easily accessible to the nightly wanderings of daring and thrill-loving youths. The vinegar tank, located under an opening in the roof, afforded tempting opportunities to the boys to lower a pail into the several hundred gallons without resorting to burglary.
    The four were on the roof, according to officers, when they were apprehended with the small amount in their possession. This morning they were more or less remorse-stricken and seemed to be worried.
    It is said that hard cider thieving has been going on in the city spasmodically for some time past, but until last night, although careful watch has been kept, none of the perpetrators were ever caught. Police say lives were risked when the cider was taken, as it was an easy matter to slip from the roof into the tank.
Medford Mail Tribune, January 25, 1926, page 8

    There is a time for all things, and this happens to be the time for marbles.
    One of the positive signs of spring is the advent of the marbles season. No sooner does the warm spring sun melt late winter's snow from pavements and sidewalks than there appear on them mystic chalk marks around which squat boys like Indians about a camp fire.
    "Knuckle down," "Trade you two shooters for a glassy," and "Your shoot" now become the language of youth, and the telltale signs of the season are bulging pockets, cardboard boxes filled with something that rattles suspiciously and having a hole in the top through which a marble might be dropped, and the clatter and roll of marbles on the schoolroom floors as sorely strained pants pockets let go.
    In his games is the boy "the father of the man." The marbles of youth prepare the way for the tennis, billiards, golf and other sports and pastimes of maturity. Marbles is the kindergarten of good sportsmanship.
    One wonders if there is a normal boy today who does not feel the irresistible urge to play marbles or a normal man who did not as a boy "shoot" the little spheres of colored glass and clay. So inseparable is the boy from the marble one sometimes thinks to deprive the boy of his marbles would work an irreparable loss.--(V.K.)
Medford Mail Tribune, March 29, 1926, page 4

    Enjoying but a few hours of freedom, following their escape from the county jail last night at 9 o'clock by hiding from the jailer and walking out while he was in another part of the jail, Harry Douglas and James Courtland, juvenile charges, 15 years of age, were apprehended this forenoon in the railroad yards at Ashland. The two are to be sent to the state training school shortly, it is said, for petty thievery about the city.
    The two boys were given quarters in the women's ward of the jail when they arrived last week, following their arrest by the local police. Secreting themselves near the padded cell for insane charges, they avoided jailer Dunford, who went to their room to turn off the lights for the night. While he was upstairs they quietly stole out. With the exception of snatching a little rest by sleeping in a hay stack the boys walked the greater part of the night, arriving at Ashland this morning.
    They have no home, it is said, and had been making their quarters in the jungles along Bear Creek, where officers say they cooked their meals from articles stolen from various stores about the city, brought about by desperate circumstances.
Medford Mail Tribune, July 27, 1926, page 3

    Complaints have been brought to the attention of the police department during the past winter in regard to youths stealing cider, which is turning into vinegar in a large open vat in a cannery on South Front Street, and becoming intoxicated as a result of drinking the distasteful beverage, which is obtained by lowering small buckets into the vat from an opening in the roof which is easily reached.
    Several youths were found last evening in an inebriated condition and were scheduled to come before Chief of Police McCredie today.
Medford Mail Tribune, March 11, 1927, page 8

    Clothing, among other things, seems to run in cycles.
    Or at least the fads of Medford's youth do. Some years ago, about four, a shapely high school lad clad in the latest in peon pants was divested of the same at a dance and went home in his overcoat, skulking in the shadows to protect his limbs from [the] vulgar gaze of the public.
    Give the wheel a spin, and today the masculine sub-debs are again blossoming out in wide-bottomed trousers with flashy inserts.
    Each school year sees something new on the horizon. Last year it was the dilapidated, battered hat.
    A couple of years ago it was blazers of wool with loud clashing color schemes.
    Following that came the crazy-quilt sweater patterns and noisy sox. Sheik haircuts, plastered by grease to the jazz boy's knob, have gone their way, and wavy coiffures with a hunt of the beauty shop marcel are a la mode today. Painted slickers were considered "hot" last winter and promise the same for 1927's rainy season.
    The bell-bottom peon pants effect will soon pass. What will the starting of Medford's schools on September 6 bring out in the way of funny clothes fads? Overalls? Sweatshirts?
Medford Daily News, September 3, 1927, page 6

    The Pacific Protective Society is helping every community in Oregon by dealing vigorously with social problems. For 16 years the Louise Home for Girls and the Albertina Kerr Nursery have merited the hearty support given them through the state.
    Now a hospital for juvenile girls from 12 to 18 offers its services to the state. No greater or more worthwhile health measure has been attempted.
    These institutions are highly recommended by the Child Welfare Commission of Oregon and are, in part, supported by the state, receiving many cases from the various courts. They have the endorsement of leading men and women of the state, such as Governor Patterson, Dr. Steiner of the state hospital, Dr. Dillehunt of the U. of O. Medical School, Judge Kanzler of the juvenile court, Drs. Stricker and Abele, health officers of the state and city, Grace Taylor, secretary of Graduate Nurses' Association.
    They are commended to the hearty favor of the Jackson County Merchants' Association by their advertising committee. Many heard Dr. Flesher recently in various addresses in Medford.
    Dr. Flesher has been obliged to return to Portland, and the canvass will be conducted by Charles W. Park. He will be available for brief addresses or conferences while in town. His address will be the Barnum Apartments.
Medford Mail Tribune, September 21, 1927, page 3

    The moving picture theaters were open as usual last night, only that all persons under sixteen years of age are forbidden to attend them, and all other public assemblages, as well as forbidden to be on the streets, by the special emergency infantile paralysis ordinance passed by the city council yesterday noon.
"Theaters Opened, Not Affected by Epidemic Curb," Medford Mail Tribune, September 30, 1927, page 5

Health Officers Report No Additions to Few Original Cases--
Quarantine Is Being Well Observed--Trains Are Watched.
    Up to late this afternoon no new cases of infantile paralysis had been reported in Medford or in the county since the last cases reported yesterday forenoon, according to City Health Officer E. B. Pickel and County Health Officer L. D. Inskeep. One suspected case on Vancouver Street developed last evening to be not an infantile paralysis case. The Medley baby, one of the two victims of the disease in Medford, was very ill yesterday, but was slightly better today, according to the physicians in charge.
    The city council quarantine precautionary measure against all boys and girls under 16 years of age being on the streets, attending any public gathering and confining them to their own home premises, is being well observed because of the cooperation of parents with the police in seeing that all restrictions are observed.
    This measure is a tough one for the youth of the city under 16, especially the children, and this is the second day of being confined to their own home premises. The children cannot leave their yards and play on the streets as heretofore with the other children of their neighborhood. The children of each family must play at home among themselves.
    A number of public gatherings set for today and the next few days have been indefinitely postponed because of the infantile paralysis quarantine. The Sunday schools of the various churches will be hard hit tomorrow, and Sunday schools have been called off by several churches.
    The quarantine is affecting a number of businesses, and the barber shops especially feel the lack of juvenile patronage. The usual heavy trade with the school pupils at the barber shops on Saturday was totally lacking today.
    Then, too, most parents throughout the city are running their own errands instead of having the children doing them as usual.
    Because of the prohibition of the youth under 16 years of age leaving their own premises, and the other restrictions imposed by the quarantine ordinance, no boys or girls under that age are allowed to go to the depot with their parents and depart from the city on trains. This works inconvenience on the families that desire to leave Medford by train.
    Mrs. Grace Beckwith and three children, Royle, 12, Elsie, 8, and Kenneth, 6, who left today for Potlatch, Idaho, overcame this difficulty by leaving in an automobile for Central Point, at which city they went aboard a train.
    Grants Pass has a similar quarantine to that of Medford, only that the age limit is 18 instead of 16. The Grants Pass quarantine also closes the public library in that city.
    Although no cases of infantile paralysis have developed in Ashland, the only case so far in that city being the one brought there by a sick child from Pinehurst, which family was promptly quarantined, the city of Ashland has adopted a minor quarantine program effective today. Jacksonville has also inaugurated a quarantine exactly like Medford's.
Medford Mail Tribune, October 1, 1927, page 1

    Medford streets were lined with people yesterday afternoon when dozens of decorated doll buggies pushed by little misses paraded down Main Street from the Chamber of Commerce with boys and girls on tricycles, bicycles and scooters bringing up the rear.
    Flowers, real and artificial, and ribbons of every color decked the carriages holding toys ranging from rag dolls to beautiful life-size babies. One little girl showed her preference for live pets by bringing her white dog in a buggy covered with blue and white blossoms. Then there was another youngster who wheeled her baby brother in the parade.
    Buddy Adams seated on his tricycle draped with red, white and blue showed his public spirit by carrying one of the "This is a Great Country" signs on the back of his float. A little miss who spurns dolls entered a gray kitten in the doll show.
    A committee of judges including the following awarded prizes at the playgrounds after the parade: Fire Chief Elliott, Mrs. O. O. Arnspiger, and Mrs. R. V. Williams. They spent more than an hour getting the best entrants selected. Ribbons were given to this group:
    For those seven years of age or younger, Hope Evelyn Runnell, daughter of Mr. and Mrs. M. B. Runnell; Elizabeth Ryan, small daughter of Mr. and Mrs. Luke Ryan, second prize; Lois Herman, daughter of Mr. and Mrs. Charles Henry Herman, third.
    In the group for those above seven: Lillian Lynum, of 717 East Jackson, first; Juanita May Cowgill, daughter of Mr. and Mrs. Ralph Cowgill, second; and Virginia May Lowell, daughter of Mr. and Mrs. Edward Lowell, third prize.
    Winners for best dolls exhibited in the show were: Mary Elizabeth Clark, first; Jerry Thomas, second and Barbara Holt, third.
    Miss Melba Williams, director of the playgrounds, wishes to thank all those who assisted in making the event, which was the first of its nature ever put on here, a success. Members of the American Legion who helped clean up the grounds Thursday night, Boy Scouts, and traffic officers who policed the march, and the judges were especially mentioned. Miss Marjorie Kelly assisted in planning the affair. Peanuts were furnished by the Economy Groceteria for the hunt which created a riot of excitement; ice cream was donated by Snider's Dairy and Produce Co., and prizes by Mann's department store.
Medford Mail Tribune, June 30, 1928, page 2

    ASHLAND, May 10.--(Special)--Ashland young people have gone on record as definitely opposed to the "signboard cigarette girl" and have accomplished results. In response to their protest, the Foster-Kleiser Company has stated that "no objectionable advertising" will be posted on their signboards in this district. This statement was given out by Al Hayden, district manager of the company, who called in Ashland and discussed the matter with Reverend C. D. Gaffney. The protest was made through the combined efforts of practically every young people's organization of the town.
    A resolution condemning the advertising, which was posted several weeks ago, showing a beautiful girl smoking, was approved by the young people's organizations, and a copy of it was printed in the Ashland Tidings. A copy was forwarded to the Foster-Kleiser Company, that ordered the posters removed.
    A copy of the resolution was also forwarded to the American Tobacco Company, which sent back word that efforts would be made to prevent the advertising of that type in the future.
Medford Mail Tribune, May 10, 1929, page 4

    As a result of a bit of mischievousness, seriously involving the possibility of a burglary charge, four local high school boys are in the toils of the city police department, following an escapade in which they took part last evening at the Craterian Theater. They had attempted to see a free show by crawling through a ventilator hole on top of the theater roof and might have been successful had not one of the quartet slipped, knocking loose a portion of the theater ceiling.
    The audience below, viewing the presentation of the movie, heard the noise of the breaking ceiling, became restless, but quickly quieted down. However, when William Prouty of the theater staff discovered the boys, turned on the attic lights and caused them to run in effort to escape, other members of the quartet began breaking through the ceiling.
    Someone saw light through the holes and shouted fire, and in a moment the audience was out of their seats, and had it not been for a number of level-headed persons a serious panic might have ensued. Upon being assured there was no trouble, the audience resumed watching the picture.
    The boys are to appear this afternoon at the police station, but as yet no decision has been reached as to what charge to place against them.
Medford Mail Tribune, June 14, 1929, page B2

    The six local boys who for three consecutive nights had plundered Southern Pacific cars and carried off an aggregate of from $15 to $20 worth of fruit and produce, and on the fourth night broke into the Swift & Company warehouse where they took three hams and a side of bacon, spent the greater part of this forenoon before Judge Sparrow and the juvenile authorities. Accompanied to the court by their parents, five of the boys probably will be released on a condition of future good behavior. The sixth, who is said by local officers to have been in trouble before, may go to a correction school.
    The boys, who ranged in ages from 13 to 16, were arrested yesterday and questioned by Southern Pacific Inspector Miles of Eugene and Traffic Officer George Prescott. Two of the boys were hiding in the tramway of the local ice plant when they were taken by the officers, according to Mr. Prescott. Another had just emerged from underneath a car on Eleventh Street.
    The seal was broken by the boys on the Southern Pacific car before the theft took place. The first night a large haul of bananas was taken; the second night, watermelons, and the third night, cantaloupes. The three hams and a side of bacon taken from the Swift company were found by the officers on the roof of the ice plant, where the boys had attempted to hide them.
Medford Mail Tribune, July 18, 1929, page 2

Southern Oregon Law Enforcement Officers Told Social Change Causes Crime; Modern Youth at Crossroad
    The average child of 14 years today has the sophistication that in years gone by was associated with a person 20 years and that condition has brought about social changes that need serious study, if conditions are to be remedied, said Prof. Irving Vining last night, speaking before the Southern Oregon Law Enforcement Officers' association in session at Ashland.
    The boys and girls of today are at the crossroads. They are floating on a sea of doubt, he told the officers. Home is not what it used to be before the day of the automobile and the present-day mechanical conveniences, placing 35 slaves, or their equivalent, at the disposal of each United States citizen. Parental authority, in some cases, has nearly been relegated to another day by Young America.
Church Loses Interest.
    The church does not hold the position is formerly held, Prof. Vining told his listeners, and does not attract the interest of young people on such a large scale. Even sacred marriage vows have been questioned and trial marriage has been suggested, and in some causes followed. As a result of all this, there is little wonder that the jails and prisons of the country are crowded, principally with young men, whose spiritual training has been sadly neglected.
    Touching the subject of prohibition, Prof. Vining told the officers that the question is a problem that will never be solved unless the citizens are behind it as a whole. It is often the case, especially in this one, that voters vote restrictions upon others and not upon themselves. "The government may send out armies of enforcement agents, but if they do not have the cooperation that is properly theirs, how can any law be enforced?' he asked.
Jacksonville Vigilantes.
    The speaker, in his opening remarks, referred to the vigilantes of Jacksonville many years ago, and told of their book of rules and by-laws being used us an example in an eastern university as embodying the foundations of justice with fair treatment for all. He told how a professor at Columbia University lectured on the book and gave credit to the early Southern Oregon pioneers for their wisdom in adopting such rules.
    "You officers," said Prof. Vining in closing, "should leave here with a sympathy for the youth of the land and help them over the rough spots until they gain a better understanding of their responsibility. Help them whenever you can and by doing that you will also be helping yourselves in the cause of improved law observance."
    Prof. Vining's speech was heartily received and was given following a few remarks by State Game Warden Harold Clifford, who reviewed the work of his department for the past 12 months. There were 686 game arrests and 628 of the arrested parties entered pleas of guilty, bringing in revenue of $25,084, of which one-half went to the counties in which the arrests were made.
    There were more cases and more convictions of hunting deer at night than there have been for several years, Warden Clifford told listeners, and there were also more arrests made along public highways.
Pomeroy Speaks.
    The first speaker on the evening's program was H. H. Pomeroy of Portland, chief deputy state fire marshal, who told of various experiences in his field.
    Last night's meeting of the association, the first one to be held since February, was attended by 100 officers, who voted to hold the next by the middle of January at Klamath Falls, where a duck and goose dinner is promised. Last night's meal, prepared by the Lithia Springs Hotel, consisted of venison, furnished by the game department.
    During the course of the banquet, entertainment on the banjo and guitar by Guy Belden and Wiot Clark of Ashland was featured. A  delightful harmonica solo was also rendered by Charles Cruickshank of the Chiloquin police force and a song was sung by a trio composed of Ted Gillenwater, Klamath County deputy district attorney, H. H. Pomeroy and Samuel Mehlhorn of the state fire marshal's office.
    Mr. Gillenwater was toastmaster for the banquet and the meetings was later taken in charge by Guy Cordon of Roseburg, Douglas county district attorney. The attendance included officers from Portland, Lane, Douglas, Coos, Curry, Jackson, Josephine, Klamath and Lake counties and the meeting was declared to be the best held in the history of the organization.
    As a special entertainment number, Miss Bernice Rhoades of the Shady Spring resort in the Siskiyou Mountains took part in several dance numbers.
Medford Mail Tribune, November 9, 1929, page 2

    A rattling good Lizzie of the touring family, that still boasts a top, an engine and a flock of girlish ambitions that will probably never be realized, was purchased by three hopeful high school misses yesterday and christened their "town car." The owners are Miss Irva Fewell, Miss Genevieve Brown and Miss Helen Wilson.
    Having taken a chill in its early youth, the vehicle is still shivering and at times is wracked with a spasmodic cough. But under the tender care of the three girls, one of whom is somewhat of a practical nurse, the choking Elizabeth is being prepared to weather a hard winter, with the hopes that spring, with its countryside haunts, will prove an ultimate soothing syrup.
Medford Mail Tribune, November 19, 1929, page 5

    "In the years past it has been a tradition to stage gang fights with students of Ashland High School," says the latest issue of the Medford Hi Times, out yesterday. "These encounters with our old rivals were eliminated last year. Let's keep up the good record. The business men of Medford have stated that they will not support us if these battles are staged in the future, and school officials declare that all athletic relations with Ashland must be severed if these wars break but anew.
    "A good egg fight is fun for anyone except such innocent tourists as may be passing between Medford and Ashland at the time. For some unexplainable reason these travelers object to being pelted with rotten eggs. Students should try to be peaceable for the good of the school and town in general. If you must have an outlet for your superfluous energy, come out for every game and do your part by cheering."
Medford Mail Tribune, November 23, 1929, page 2

Kids Block Street for Free Popcorn
    An estimated crowd of 300 children blocked the sidewalks Saturday morning waiting their chance to get a free bag of popcorn donated by the Monarch Seed & Feed Company.
    Three washtubs of popcorn were given to the kiddies, who went their way singing the praises of the local company.
    Featuring the Jap Hulless delicious flavored popcorn "that really pops," the Monarch Feed & Seed Company has built up a big demand for this commodity and reports the sale of over a ton of popcorn during the winter months each season.
    Mr. Miksche says five or six families consume more than 50 pounds of corn each during the winter. There must be such a thing as being a "popcorn fan."
Medford Mail Tribune, November 25, 1929, page 2

Curfew Hour to Be Rigidly Enforced Is Instruction to Police--Permission of Parents No Excuse--Armory Crowd Irks.
    No longer will boys and girls of the city under 15 years of age be permitted to roam the streets of the city late at night, whether by permission of parents or not, unless with adult escort, and boys allowed to congregate about the armory on the nights of wrestling matches and boxing bouts, or view the same inside except accompanied by parent or some other chaperone, for the city council last night decided to enforce the curfew law from today on, and instructed the police to gather in all boys and girls found on the streets unchaperoned after 9 a.m. [sic], and take them home to their parents or lock them up until called for by the parents.
    The curfew ordinance has been a dead letter for months past, especially ever since the fire department moved away from the city hall building to its new station. The firemen had rung the curfew bell every night, but when the department was moved to its new location the bell was left hanging in the city hall tower and has not been rung since.
Police Continued Active
    No formal action had been taken by the city officials to stop enforcing the curfew ordinance, but there was general understanding among them to this end, especially as the police have continued all the time to chase flagrant cases of little boys on the streets after 9 o'clock to their homes, or to take them home to their parents with a warning to the latter to keep them off the streets at night.
    In the past few weeks, however, the sight of young children running around on the streets at late hours has become more pronounced, complaints reaching the mayor in this regard, and the matter came to a head last night when Mayor Pipes told the councilmen that complaints had reached him about young boys congregating at the armory entrance and about the building on boxing exhibition nights until they were admitted free after the bouts had gotten well under way and the paid crowd had all arrived.
    Chief of Police McCredie frankly stated that he himself had often let the boys in to prevent them from breaking in armory windows and congregating about the building until the exhibition was over. He said it would take an army of policemen to chase the boys away--their number on such nights was so great--and enough men could not be spared from Medford's small police force to drive them away from the armory to their homes.
Evil Is Seen
    Every councilman declared that the general evil of boys at large after 9 p.m. must be stopped at whatever cost, especially at the armory--agreeing with the utterance of one councilman that to continue to let the boys to be on the streets after 9 o'clock was breeding future criminals.
    The other councilmen uttered similar sentiments, even when Chief McCredie stated that in many cases if boys were driven home at 9, their parents would not be there to take care of them. Both the police chief and some of the councilmen declared that many parents or mothers sent their children out on the streets, or rather let the go out until they returned home from spending the evening at various social or amusement places, when they summoned the "kids" home by blowing whistles or calling them.
    The police will ring the curfew bell at 9 p.m. from now on, but whether the bell is rung or not, children found on the streets without escorts after that hour will be taken home or to the police station.
Medford Mail Tribune, December 18, 1929, page 6

    During the vacation period in Medford and prior to the opening of the schools there were frequent comments and some complaints about the children, ten, twelve and fifteen years of age loitering about the streets after the curfew hour. This practice has continued since the school year opened and has grown worse instead of better, and our police department has been unable to cope with this condition by use of mild means, and complaints are more frequent now than during the summer months.
    It is a regrettable matter that parents will permit this condition at any season, and wholly unpardonable during the school year. Such delinquency upon the part of parents or guardian is uncomplimentary to the high class of citizenry of which Medford boasts.
    A recent survey of the situation has revealed the astonishing fact that boys under the age of fifteen and even under the age of ten years congregate in large numbers about the armory on the nights when boxing bouts have been staged and stormed the doors and windows for admittance.
    At the regular meeting of the city council on last Tuesday night this problem was thoroughly considered, and it was the unanimous decision of the council that this condition must cease immediately. We question the wisdom of even permitting the presence of boys of the ages above mentioned at boxing or wrestling bouts, and they certainly will not be permitted to attend unchaperoned. In some of our larger cities ordinances have been enacted imposing a fine upon the parent who permits his son or daughter to loiter upon the streets after the curfew hour. We hope that this will not be necessary in Medford.
    The curfew bell will ring at 9 p.m. in the future and boys, and girls under the age of fifteen years who are found upon the streets without chaperone will be taken into custody by the police. We appeal to the parents of Medford for their cooperation in correcting this night loitering of children to the end that embarrassment for children and parents may be avoided.
    Mayor of Medford.
Medford Mail Tribune, December 19, 1929, page 5

    A cider bath on a chilly February night is not the most enjoyable way of spending an evening and is not the best for clothes, is a discovery made by Floyd Sullivan, who accidentally fell into the cider-vinegar vat at the Rogue River Canning Company factory on South Front Street last night. Sullivan was accompanied by a friend, V. Bergman, and the pair were quietly occupied in dipping cider out of the vat by means of a bucket and rope.
    The fruit juice was fermenting and perhaps was being sought by the two as a beverage. They probably had not meant to stay long or do any damage, but some neighbor living near the cannery must have seen them on top of the factory roof, as the police were summoned to the scene.
    The arrival of the officers startled the boys, and officers declare Sullivan started to run but his foot slipped and he fell with a sickening splash into the sticky fruit juice a few feet below. Shivering from dampness and uncomfortable because of the glucose nature of the liquid, Sullivan was ushered into the police station, the floor of which today still bears mute testimony of dripping apple cider. Two jugs that officers say were found in the boys' possession are also in the station and are filled with cider.
    The two were placed in the county jail and will probably be charged with petty larceny.
    Saturday night the police were called to the cannery because of alleged attempts of three other youths to help themselves to the cider. However, these young men did not know where the vat was located and, not having any cider, they were released shortly after they were brought to the station.
Medford Mail Tribune, February 10, 1930, page 3

    For stealing five gallons of gas from the car of G. A. Abbott, by siphoning it from his car to their own flivver while the two cars were parked near the Natatorium last night, Ampere Young and Lynn Bellows, local youths, were sentenced to 30 days in jail by Judge Taylor in the city court today, and then the sentence was held up and they were paroled into the custody of their parents with the understanding that any further misconduct would lead to their serving out the sentence.
    The boys evidently had a nice story cooked up to entice leniency from the court. They were just telling the judge that they were without funds, and stole the gas as a last resort to provision their flivver for a journey to the Blue Ledge mine to accept jobs there, when their parents, who were sitting nearby, interrupted and told the court they did not have to work or borrow gas.
    Bing! All bets were off immediately, and the above sentence was pronounced.
Medford Mail Tribune, February 15, 1930, page 6

    Goiter trouble, also known as thyroid disturbance, is presenting a growing problem for county health authorities in view of the high percentage of children afflicted with the ailment. Outside of Medford and Ashland, for which no statistics are available, the county health department estimates from 75 to 85 percent of the school children [are] afflicted with the ailment.
    Medford children have been examined, but statistics are unavailable at the present.
    Iodine is generally known for its goiter remedial qualities, but Dr. B. C. Wilson, county health officer, today warned against its promiscuous use and said such remedy should not be taken unless under the observation and direction of a physician.
    Plans are under way in cooperation with school boards of different districts in the county for the arrangement of a definite schedule whereby certain iodine-containing tablets will be administered to students largely for the prevention of goiter and for the relief of goiters already apparent, preventing further enlargement.
    The city of Portland consumes approximately 250,000 tablets annually, and Eugene has been using 70,000 in schools of that city.
    Dr. Wilson has -written the United States Department of Public Health for accurate data in regard to methods and cost for supplying and administering iodine in water where needed.
Medford Mail Tribune, April 3, 1930, page 5

    Bicycling was a safer sport back in the gay nineties than it is today. Even though the skirts of the school girls were long and voluminous, hazards were not so great as at present when the gang returning for lunch uses the railroad platform for a race track, according to J. C. Carle, freight and passenger agent for Southern Pacific.
    Mr. Carle, who has repeatedly asked schoolchildren to keep off the platform, is issuing another appeal to students, parents and officials of schools and police force.
    For the past several days children have been trying to beat the Shasta [train] across the tracks when they come down Sixth Street during the noon hour. Railroad officials, on the train and off, have watched the race with great anxiety, they stated today noon, fearing that the wheels would stall or waver on the tracks, throwing the riders under the engine.
    "If the practice is continued," Mr. Carle said this morning, "it will be only a short time until some child is seriously injured or killed. Accidents of a similar nature are reported from time to time in other cities. They should serve as a warning to local people, and we hope Medford will not be faced with such a tragedy."
    Since the warnings of railroad employees have been consistently ignored, Mr. Carle suggests it is time for mamas and papas to take a hand in keeping their offspring off the railroad tracks when the trains are pulling in.
    The situation, he adds, is hazardous not only for the schoolchildren but for passengers and people waiting on the platform.
Medford Mail Tribune, April 10, 1930, page 5

Medford School Survey Shows Bad Teeth a Prevailing Defect; Correction Is Urged for Health
By Eva Nealon
    How many members of the younger generation will sport store teeth before they are 30? (This is not an advertisement.) Much talk has been published in magazines, newspapers and other media on the effect of modern foods on teeth.
    They haven't said much about flat feet, but the report of physical examinations conducted in the Medford grade schools for 1929 and 1930, given out Wednesday by Mrs. Josephine Jones, school nurse, shows bad teeth doubling in number any other defects found in Medford's school girls and boys with flat feet next in line. A total of 1188 pupils have defective teeth. There are 479 with flat feet. The examination schedule shows 109 pupils without defects.
    They aren't going to have store teeth and they aren't going to keep flat feet, according to school officials, if they follow instructions given out following examinations. Preparations are now under way for the annual health honor roll program, which will be conducted by Mrs. Jones May 2, during National Child Health Week, and it is hoped most Medford students will qualify to participate in the festivities of the day.
    The first requirement of the Health Honor Roll is an annual physical examination and the correction of remedial defects. These examinations are made by local physicians and dentists, who have donated their time to the work, giving an hour or two a day until the examinations are completed. The laws of Oregon demand that physical examinations be given in the schools each year. Any parent, however, may have a child exempt from the examinations upon application.
    More than 60 percent of the pupils in the Medford high school and more than 90 percent of the pupils in all other schools of this city elected to take the examinations this year, Mrs. Jones stated.
    Besides being free of remedial defects a child must be doing his health chores each day to form right habits of cleanliness, eating, exercise and play before he qualifies for the honor roll. The cooperation offered by Medford parents in the health work, Mrs. Jones stated, is realized in the number of letters received each day concerning the welfare of the child.
    An average of about 150 or 200 corrections are being made each week in order that children may be eligible.
    The health honor roll program Friday, May 2, will open with a parade from the junior high school up Main Street to the Library lawn, where the pupils will pass in review before the grandstand.
    The complete summary of defects found in the 1541 pupils below high school examined this year is as follows: Tonsils 476, teeth 1188, thyroid 419, heart 75, lungs 4, flat feet 479, hearing 59, vision 88 and weight, 220 under and 50 over weight.
    Following the health honor roll program Mrs. Maude Barrigar Jones, director of physical education for girls in the Medford schools, will put on a short program showing the work carried on in her department.
Medford Mail Tribune, April 18, 1930, page 4

Your Mother
Your mother is the best of friends,
She'll stick to you through sorrow and sin,
And if some of the boys today should say,
"Scarey Cat," 'cause you won't disobey,
Well--what do you care?
So long as she lives, you are sure of a friend;
So remember, my boy, as you stand in life's test,
Always give your mother your best.
Walter Holmes--[grade] 6B.
"Jackson School," Medford Mail Tribune, May 11, 1930, page B4

Medford Lad Aspires to Tree Sitting Record of World; Family Hoists Food
    Medford's first tree sitter, Walter Holmes, 11 years old, son of Mr. and Mrs. W. B. Holmes, 712 West Jackson Street, began sitting at 10 o'clock this forenoon in an oak tree at 1307 West Main Street. The endurance sitting is sponsored solely by the boy's parents, who will hoist food and other supplies to him whenever needed.
    Walter is enthused over the prospect of breaking all existing records and said he would only come down when he knew he had a record established or was ordered to come down by his mother. The only prize offered was a personal one, and that came from Mr. Burke, who is here on a visit from Southern California. Inspired by the boy's nerve, he was offered a $10 bill. The boy said he took up the tree sitting experiment as a result of reading press dispatches and a desire to outdo the Oakland, Calif., tree sitter, who has been up in a tree for 753 hours up until yesterday.
Medford Mail Tribune, July 29, 1930, page 1

    MEDFORD, Ore., July 29.--(UP)--Walter Holmes, 11, climbed into the limbs of a huge oak tree here today and became Medford's first tree-sitter.
    Holmes, who is a bright little chap and anxious to break all existing tree-sitting records, said that he intended to remain aloft as long as he possibly could. The youthful challenger passed an uneventful day by answering questions flung as him by passersby, reading and candy consumption.
Santa Rosa Press Democrat, July 30, 1930, page 1

Bad Boys Throw Rocks at Tree Sitter,
Otherwise It's a Great Life He Declares

    Up 29 hours and still enjoying himself sitting in a tree, Walter Holmes, 11, at 3 o'clock this afternoon was still determined to beat all existing tree-sitting records if it took him the next three months. He declared that he is prepared to sit in the tree, 1307 West Main Street, until school begins, or after, if necessary.
    He said he was receiving considerable company and found the only trouble in a number of boys who have been throwing rocks at him.
    There are no additional tree-sitters reported in Medford today. A search revealed none in any part of the city.
Medford Mail Tribune, July 30, 1930, page 6

Tree Sitter Worries As Bath Night Nears;
Girl Friend Spurs Ambition

    The only thing that seemed to have Walter Holmes, 11-year-old tree sitter at 1307 West Main Street, worried this afternoon was the question of his weekly bath. The platform, with box sides at one end, does not include a bath tub in its furnishings and presents a problem of which Walter had not thought much of until today. He is now attempting to devise a ways and means of solving the puzzle. He was up 53 hours at 3 o'clock this afternoon and still determined to stay up the tree until truant officers make him come down when school starts.
     He said that he begins the day right with sitting-up exercises, including tooth washing. He did not get into his pajamas until 11:30 last night because of company beneath the tree and enjoyed a good night's rest underneath some Indian blankets.
    He admitted that he has a girl and that she brings flowers to him to spur him on in his endurance sit. He declared that he had a bath last Monday and believed that the bathing situation would not become a paramount worry until the first week rolls by. In the meantime, he thinks some system may be devised to take care of the ablutions.
Medford Mail Tribune, July 31, 1930, page 1

    Leonard Christean and Lowell Larter, local young boys, wanted to see a free show at the Rialto Theater last night and attempted to make their way into the auditorium. Their efforts resulted in knocking plaster from the ceiling of the show house and causing some disturbance for the audience. The boys appeared at the police station this morning and were to appear there again this afternoon. It is probable no legal steps will be taken against them, but they must repair the damage they caused.
    The pair crawled through a trap door on top of the theater, leading to a space between the ceiling and room. Shortly after they crawled through, one of the boys hit the ceiling too hard and his legs emerged in the showhouse, and he would have fallen to the floor except for an electric conduit.
    While a few women screamed and most of the audience arose from the seats, there was no panic. A few left the theater when they heard the noise above them.
    The city building inspector, F. H. Rogers, inspected the theater building this forenoon and declared it to be in first-class shape and that it was no fault of the building that the plaster fell.
Medford Mail Tribune, July 31, 1930, page 3  Leonard was 14 years of age and Lowell 15.

Roosting Lad to Read Own Bible Lesson Sunday Morn
    With the question of his weekly bath almost settled, Walter Holmes, 11, tree sitter at 1307 West Main Street, was a bit regretful today that he would miss Sunday school next Sunday. He has been in regular attendance and, to make up for missing the classes, Walter plans to have his own lesson next Sunday. He has a Bible with him in the tree.
    Like yesterday, he said today he would not worry over the bath until next week. He decided to don a bathing suit and stand at one end of the small tree platform while another boy will give him a soaking with water from a garden hose.
    The lad has attracted quite a number of people to the tree and is still determined to remain there until all records have been broken.

Medford Mail Tribune, August 1, 1930, page 1

    Up 110 hours at midnight, Walter Holmes, 11, Medford's first and only tree sitter, was continuing to enjoy the experience when the clock tolled 12. He has lost none of his enthusiasm and is looking forward to the time when he will be able to come down out of the tree, acclaimed as the champion. His health is in perfect condition, encouraged by regular diet and sitting-up exercises each morning.
    An eastern newspaperman, passing through Medford, called on Walter yesterday, asked quite a number of questions and told him if he became champion to furnish him with a picture as quickly as possible. Tree sitting has its profits, Walter has learned. Paul Horner cleaned and pressed some clothes for him during the week and promised he would do it again.
Medford Mail Tribune, August 3, 1930, page 7

    There is a big surprise in store for every child, as well as parents, if they are listening in at 10 a.m. Tuesday on KMED.
    This time on the air comes to the radio listeners of the Rogue River Valley through the courtesy of Ed Vallier, local manager of the Texas Oil Company, "Chet" Leonard of the Texaco Super Service Station, and Mr. Stewart of the Texaco Service Station of Ashland.
     Here is a little advance information about the big surprise. It will be the voice of the most persistent and determined boy in the world.
Medford Mail Tribune, August 4, 1930, page 8

    Several fathers of boy tree-sitters throughout the nation have exercised their parental rights and spanked the young heroes, and other have gone aloft so they can get a square meal too.

Arthur Perry, "Ye Smudge Pot," Medford Mail Tribune, August 6, 1930, page 8

    If his tree sitting endurance venture is a success, Walter Holmes, 11, who completed 245 hours in an oak tree on West Main Street this afternoon at 3, would enjoy flagpole sitting, he said this afternoon, if he could gain the consent of his elders. He is still enthusiastic to break the world's record but seemed to appear a little tired this afternoon.
    A telephone has been installed on the platform, and he receives quite a number of calls from well-wishers.
Medford Mail Tribune, August 8, 1930, page 4

City Executive Deplores Publicity Stunt As Bad for Children's Health
    and Productive of No Good--Favors Invoking Law.

    "I have no objection to the application of human endurance within reason or in certain instances even beyond a reasonable degree if it is for the advancement of science and civilization," Mayor A. W. Pipes stated this morning regarding the practice of "tree-sitting" into which a member of the younger generation of Medford and boys of other cities of the United States are branching out. "But I am squarely against some of these idiosyncrasies now indulged in by the youth, such as tree-sitting, or roosting upon a flagpole; the riding of a bicycle until the youth falls prostrate from exhaustion, etc.
    "For such indulgences in no way contribute to the helpfulness of body or mind and certainly lend nothing to progress. Rather such a phenomenon as tree sitting gives evidence of Darwin's theory and should be frowned upon by all right-thinking parents.
    "The daily newspapers of Florida," Mayor Pipes continued, "recently declared by resolution that they would print no further news concerning tree-sitters and the malady immediately subsided in Florida. In other sections of the country the police and humane authorities have intervened. We should like to see the newspapers of Oregon and especially of Medford follow the example set in Florida in preference to the invoking of police powers," he concluded.
Medford Mail Tribune, August 11, 1930, page 1

    Judging by the protests which have been flooding this office for a week past, the tree-sitting stunt is not popular in Medford.
    Well, tree-sitting doesn't appeal to us either, but we have been unable to share some of the sentiments expressed, regarding the young man who decided to give Medford an entry in this nationwide endurance contest.
    After all, he is hardly to blame. Boys elsewhere have been doing it, and their elders many years ago started the performance. There have been pie-eating contests, dancing marathons, flagpole sitting, bullfrog jumping, whisker growing, and "what have you?" for many years past. The entire rigmarole has always appeared foolish to us, but until now we have never heard a clearly defined public protest.
    Perhaps the dear people are at last awaking to the folly of it all. We hope so. For, in spite of a very general impression to the contrary, the newspapers have not been entirely responsible. Newspapers do influence public opinion but they seldom create it.
    And if anyone doubts this they have only to follow this tree-sitting business for a little while and be convinced.
    For this tree-sitting intermezzo is over. Not because the newspapers in Florida and elsewhere have decided to give it no more publicity, but because public opinion is against it.
    And without the support of public opinion these crazy stunts collapse of their own weight. Try as they will, the American league of tree sitters can't, and won't, carry on much longer. They may get newspaper support here and there, but their dream of fame and fortune is over. The people will have none of it. And when the people will have none of it the newspapers sooner or later--usually SOONER--fall in line.
    Tree sitting essentially is no more ridiculous than a dancing marathon or a cross-country bunion derby, or trying to set a new record for eating doughnuts. But tree sitting just happened to come in too late and happened to involve children--a COMBINATION THAT FORMED THE STRAW THAT BROKE THE CAMEL'S BACK.
    We are just a little sorry for the tree sitters. As before stated, they are not to blame. After seeing what other stunters got away with, they were undoubtedly justified in trying to get a bit of easy money and publicity for themselves.
    They are in something the same boat as the man who bought a corset factory ten years ago, or entered the New York stock market for the first time last October. Nothing intrinsically wrong--countless others had done likewise. They merely happened to do it at the WRONG TIME. The worm had turned and they didn't know it. So their misfortune comes under the rather cheerless heading of "just too bad."
Medford Mail Tribune, August 12, 1930, page 8

Let Little Walter Alone.
To the Editor:
    Say, let little Walter alone, can't you. He's all right. He can't help it if his folks are the type that think tree-sitting is good training for a youngster--especially in this kind of weather.
    Think of all the lawn mowing little Walter is getting out of. Think of all the strenuous tennis he doesn't have to play. Think of all the terrible swimming parties that little Walter doesn't have to attend. Think of all the abominable picnics that he is escaping from.
    This is fine training for him. He is probably planning to specialize in the sitting line. No stupid football; no tiresome baseball; no disgusting marble games will take little Walter's mind from his life work. For little Walter surely will be so proud when he wins his tree-sitting championship that he will go right on toward bigger and better things--that is, he will try for the pole-sitting championship. No need of any more school then. No need of athletics. No need of movies. No need of legs even, for he will just be a sitter all his life.
    The valiant knight who now holds the championship for pole-sitting was doubtless the champion tree-sitter in his boyhood and the champion thumb-sucker in his babyhood. Think of it! Champion three times, and all because his parents knew what was best for him.
    True, there have been some tree-sitters recently who have come to grief--sunstroke, lack of publicity, and in a few instances a fall resulting in a broken head. But then, what use has a tree-sitter for a head, anyway.
    (Name on file.)
"Communications," Medford Mail Tribune, August 13, 1930, page 7

Tree-Sitter Defies Mayor of Medford
    MEDFORD, Oregon, Aug. 12.--(UP)--Walter Holmes, Medford's young tree sitter, with 325 hours to his credit, today told Mayor A. W. Pipes over the telephone line run to the tree that no ordinance the mayor could call forth would remove him from his perch.
Santa Rosa Press Democrat, August 13, 1930, page 2

    Walter Holmes, Medford's 11-year-old tree sitter, was not only up a tree but several of his friends and supporters as well yesterday when he received a telephone call that was purported to come from Mayor A. W. Pipes, ordering him to come out of the tree by a certain time yesterday afternoon. If at that time he was still in the tree, Chief of Police McCredie was to come and pull him down, the hoax call said.
    However, immediate investigation disclosed that Mayor Pipes had never made such a call and the voice at the other end must have been a practical joker, and Walter continues to sit in the tree, nearing the 500-hour mark and hopeful that he will be the tree sitting champ. The identity of the voice has not been learned.
Medford Mail Tribune,
August 17, 1930, page 8

Tree Sitter to Come Down Today to Attend School
    MEDFORD, Aug. 19.--(UP)--Just as the whistles blow the hour of noon tomorrow, little Walter Holmes, Medford's tree sitter, will climb down from his leafy perch after spending 772 hours aloft.
    Walter had planned to stay up until the truant officer came after him, but on second thought decided he had better get ready for school, which starts here on Tuesday.
Medford Mail Tribune,
August 30, 1930, page 1

    Medford's 11-year-old tree sitter, Walter Holmes, after holding forth in an oak tree on West Main Street for 777 hours, or five weeks, next Tuesday, came down to earth yesterday, claimant of the Pacific Coast record for tree sitting. He came out of the tree at 7:00 o'clock and was becoming acquainted with things on earth last night. He was intent on gaining a national record, but the proximity of school opening made it impossible to pass the 1,007-hour record held by a boy in Kansas.
Medford Mail Tribune, August 31, 1930, page 3

Rogue Cannery Gives Up Vinegar-Making
in Face of Annual Raids by Hard Cider Addicts.

    Unknown vandals broke into the Rogue River Valley Canning Company plant on South Railroad Ave. late Tuesday night and by malicious carelessness caused the loss of 7000 gallons of vinegar valued at $1500, by leaving the tap to the vat open, causing the vinegar to run off into a sewer.
    The culprits were seeking apple cider, and as the vinegar had not started to "mother," it was in prime condition.
    Manager R. U. Boutelle of the canning company said that as a result of the vandalism--the same thing occurred last year--no further efforts would be made by the concern to make vinegar. He said this year he had placed safeguards around the vinegar vat to thwart the marauders, but they had come armed with monkey wrenches and undid all his work, in a spirit of mischievousness.
Quaint Old Custom
    It has been a quaint local custom for years to raid the vat, and five years ago a youth nearly drowned when he fell from the roof into the vat, to be rescued by his pals after a good ducking.
    There are no clues in the latest depredation, and the authorities are baffled. A watchman in the neighborhood heard someone in the plant early Wednesday morning, but from the sounds thought plumbers were at work, and made no investigation.
    When the vinegar that was lost was ready for bottling and shipping, it would have furnished labor to ten or twelve persons.
    The cannery management stated they have always experienced more or less difficulty in their vinegar making from those with a thirst for cider in the hard stage, and that losses had been sustained, besides the annoyance of not knowing when they were going to be burglarized.
    "It seems that we just can't make vinegar," said Mrs. Boutelle this morning, "and after our experience this fall, we have decided to cut it out in the future. What they drink they were welcome to. It's what they wasted that hurts."
Medford Mail Tribune, December 5, 1930, page 1

    ASHLAND, Ore., April 9.--(Spl.)--Four Medford boys Tuesday afternoon decided they wanted to see the world, and outside of the scenic wonders between Ashland and Medford, the net results of their explorations was a two hours' visit in the Ashland city jail while the local police held them until their parents came after the errant youths.
    When the police received a report that somebody was filching bottles of milk and that four boys had thrown a rock through a garage window at the Tony Franco place on B Street, the four boys were picked up as they were waiting along the railroad tracks for a freight train to come along which would take them on the first lap of their world tour. The four boys were 14 years of age and a few hours later their parents came to Ashland and retrieved them from the city prison.
Medford Mail Tribune, April 9, 1931, page 3

Weary Medford Youngster Plods Late with Papers To Aid Family Food Fund
(By Eva Nealon)
    Swaying beneath a load of papers, which reached from hip to armpit, a little boy of eight appeared at a west side door last night just before the clock struck nine.
    Introducing himself with a yawn, he leaned against the sill and inquired in a drowsy voice: "Want a paper?"
    Looking over his pack, devoted to the Portland press, the lady of the house replied: "We get them both."
    "Oh," he yawned again and rested one worn-out shoe upon the other in a renewed effort to brace himself against the sill. The lids were drooping over his large dark eyes.
    "What's the matter?" the lady of the house continued.
    "Just got tired feet," he answered with sleepy nonchalance, his mouth opening into still another yawn.
    "Why aren't you at home this time of night?"
    "Have to sell my papers," he clasped them to his side again. "Started out at 6 o'clock, walked about a thousand miles."
    "Where do you live?"
    He named a number in the outskirts of the east side.
    "Have you any brothers and sisters?"
    "Eight of us."
    "What does your father do?"
    "He doesn't do anything."
    "What do you do with your money?"
    "I put it in the bank and he buys grub with it. Guess I better be going on," he untangled his feet and steadied the papers on his hip.
    "I'll take one," the woman handed him the money.
    "Thanks," his smile grew into a yawn.
    "Do you know how to get home?"
    "When I get out where I can see," he blinked and resumed his shuffling down the street.

Medford Mail Tribune, April 10, 1931, page 6

Pitiful Plight of Medford Family Disclosed by Visit of County Health Officer
(By Eva Nealon)
    Gazing about the four walls of his room with large brown eyes, whose expression never changes--Charles, 8-year-old son of a Medford couple--lies at the Sacred Heart Hospital worrying not about his bronchial pneumonia, nor the fever which is stealing still more pounds from his emaciated little body.
    For the same condition, which limits the expression of his eyes to one tired stare, also robs Charles of ability to realize danger. So he smiles on, with his lips, unmindful of the congested chest over which his skin is so tightly drawn.
    He folds his long, scrawny arms over the pneumonia jacket and rests his head on his pillow. The bed is comfortable and Charles was sleeping on a hard bed between mother and father when Dr. B. C. Wilson, county health officer, removed him from his home to the hospital last weekend.
    His six little brothers and sisters are sleeping in the attic and on the floor. For they are not ill and two of them, like Charles, would scarcely realize it if they were.
    When spoken to the little boy opens his mouth wider to mutter an undistinguishable word and to display another defect in his makeup--two rows of decayed teeth, worn to the gums.
    He used to have eight brothers and sisters; two of them have died. Charles may recover from the pneumonia and hunger which are threatening his life, and he may not, Dr. Wilson said this morning. But whether he does or doesn't, he will never worry about the job his father doesn't have, the barren walls of his home, nor the lack of food in the cupboard. Nature has seen to that.

Medford Mail Tribune, April 14, 1931, page 3

    "Dead-Eye Dick" stories, where the hero shoots the villain and rescues the heroine from death under the wheels of the oncoming locomotive, are not so popular with boys and girls in their 'teens today as they used to be.
    High school students, in an informal survey conducted this week, showed a decided preference for scientific and fiction magazines. Only one boy out of 100 who were questioned as to their favorite magazine specified one which specialized in the "dime novel" type of story.
    Instead, magazines like the Cosmopolitan, Colliers, American and Geographic ranked first in their preferences.
    While the magazines they voted for were probably limited to those which they had in their homes or in the school library, a wide variety was named.
    The most popular with freshman girls were the Cosmopolitan, Colliers, American and Motion Picture. Boys reach for a Popular Mechanics or a Boys' Life, instead of dime thrillers.
    In spite of the fact that many boys of high school age specified at registration last fall that they were interested in aviation, only one named an aviation magazine as his favorite reading.
    The reading tastes of freshmen differ little from these of upper classmen, the survey showed. The older boys showed less interest in scientific magazines and more in ones like the American or the Reader's Digest, while the older girls are beginning to lean toward magazines like Vanity Fair, Pictorial Review and Good Housekeeping. Few students read the Saturday Evening Post or Liberty, two of the nation's biggest sellers.
    Freshman girls showed greater interest in Love Stories and True Stories than their elders, while boys evinced no romantic urge whatever along reading lines.
Medford Mail Tribune, April 15, 1931, page 6

    The "wise-cracking" young scientist who recently predicted that human beings will eventually cease to have teeth as well as tails, discarded in the "monkey age," would find great satisfaction in reading the report for 1930-31, recently issued by Mrs. Josephine Jones, health nurse in the Medford schools. For the report shows that far more than half the children examined in the Medford schools have defective teeth.
    During the school year 2378 pupils in the senior high, junior high, Jackson, Lincoln, Roosevelt and Washington schools were given physical examinations. Of this number 1525 were found to have teeth in need of attention.
    The total number of physical defects found was 3941, a little more than twice the number found in teeth alone. More corrections are being made, however, it is shown in the survey of the progress of the health honor roll for the past four years. During the year 1927-28 the average percentage of corrections made was 64.9, in 1930-31 it was 75.48.
    Tonsil and thyroid troubles rank next to teeth in the listing of defects found. Five hundred and eighty-one pupils had tonsils removed and 528 were found to have defective thyroids. The total number with diseased tonsils, which need watching, number 437. Flat feet are reported for 355 pupils and poor posture for 269.
    Heart defects were found in 154 and skin troubles in 105.
    Boys and girls of Medford are going to do a good job of seeing and hearing, however, it is indicated in the survey figures. Only 17 pupils were found to have defective hearing and 15 eye irritations.
    A child is allowed on the health honor roll if after an examination he is found to be free of remedial defects or if he has had remedial defects corrected; if he is mentally normal, cooperative in his health habits and in school activities. Washington School won first prize during the past year for having the highest percentage of pupils on the roll with a record of 88.5. Jackson School won second place with 86.9.
    Five to ten minutes each morning is devoted to health inspection in the elementary grade schools. The silver cup awarded annually to the school keeping the most health rules went to Roosevelt School this year, with 99.16 percent of the rules kept during the school year.
    One of the leading preventative measures taken to curb disease during the past year was the immunization against diphtheria. Toxin-antitoxin was given to 509 children in the elementary grades and to 36 preschool children.
    With the close of this term of school Mrs. Jones will complete her work in the Medford district, having resigned to accept a position in Meridian, Miss. The progress health work has made under her leadership is much appreciated, and she will be greatly missed by many friends, having been with the local system for five years.

Medford Mail Tribune, May 24, 1931, page 6

    "Five feet two and eyes of blue" may be the ideal for some song writer, but his "dream girl" would be undersized if judged by the senior girls in Medford High School.
    Measurements taken this week of all graduating seniors in the school in preparation for the commencement marching line showed that the average height for the "sweet girl graduate" was five feet four inches.
    Out of the 95 girls in the senior class, 22 gave their height at that figure. Eighteen were five feet five and 17 reached five feet six inches.
    The shortest girl in the class, Fay Ackley, was an inch under five feet, while six girls attained a height of five feet seven, the tallest in the class.
    Boys started from five feet three with Frank Dalkey, and ran as high as six feet one inch. Neville Biden, Jack Caldwell, Bob Emmens and Ralph Thomas, all set their stature at that height. The average for the boys ran between five feet eight, with 12 to five feet eleven, with nine boys in that class.
    The average boy graduate of Medford High this year will be four inches taller than the average girl, the figures show.

Medford Mail Tribune, May 27, 1931, page 3

    William Joyce, a defiant 13-year-old boy accused of a multitude of petty offenses by his mother and grandmother and Chief of Police McCredie, appeared before Judge Alex Sparrow of the juvenile court this morning and gave his "word of honor" that he would be a good boy in the future. He must mind his grandmother, report to the chief of police every Saturday morning, and be in bed by nine o'clock each night.
    It was with considerable difficulty that Judge Sparrow exacted an "honor promise" from the young man. Kin said he always kept his solemn word.
    It was charged that young Joyce stole $12 from his grandmother and was caught just as he was ready to board the train for California.
    Among the offenses listed against him are:
    Stealing Portland papers from the depot platform; knocking down young children; stealing pineapples from a warehouse; boisterousness at moving picture shows; running away from home and staying a month at a time, the last jaunt taking him to Reno, Nevada; tearing of Chief of Police McCredie's coat by attempting to take his star, and associating with tramps.
    The boy, according to his grandmother, was in the Washington state reformatory when ten years old, and it did no good. She also said she had "wore out the willows on him in the woodshed," with the same result.
    His relatives felt he should be sent to the reform school, but the court felt a youth with so much energy should be given another chance.

Medford Mail Tribune, August 14, 1931, page 8

    County authorities today rounded up a group of Phoenix youths between 15 and 18 years of age, alleged to have been the cause of considerable petty devilment the past three months in that vicinity.
    Last night, according to a complaint made to Sheriff Ralph Jennings by E. A. Parker, a farmer, they stole nine of his fattest chickens and hid them in the Phoenix cemetery, where they were found early this morning in a gunnysack behind a tombstone.
    Parker told the sheriff that the chicken thieves originally intended to raid the roosts of Norm Lyons, a neighbor, "but came to my hen house because they thought the Minorca roosters were fatter." Parker asserts that last fall and winter the thieving was so intense he sold his flocks.
    Turkey raisers of the vicinity are keeping a close watch on their fowls.
    Parker told the sheriff that the bad boy gang has passed beyond the stage "where you can get under their hides with an argument, and they laugh at you if you try to show them the error of their ways." All the losers want drastic action meted.
    It is alleged that the chickens are brought to this city and sold for money "to go to picture shows," and that the gang operates only at night. They are alleged to have committed a long series of depredations, including the theft of a watch, and the breaking of a lock off the Boy Scout headquarters.
    Sheriff Jennings investigated the latest raid this morning, and the offenders are scheduled to have a hearing late today.

Medford Mail Tribune, September 29, 1931, page 2

Boys Not Blamed
To the Editor:
    Excitement ran high Tuesday morning after the arrest of the four Phoenix youths for chicken stealing. It had been known for some time that there were at least a couple who should be taken in hand, but no one had been able to catch them in the act until Mr. Parker caught them in his hen roosts. Now the question arises, are these boys wholly to blame. Should not parents of boys of that age know where their boys are at 11 o'clock at night? How long have these boys been allowed to run at will and the parents not know their whereabouts? If these same boys had been having exercise at hard work until the age of 16, they would have acquired the habit of going to bed before that time.
    Truly, idle hands and brains are the devil's workshops.
    (Name on file.)
"Communications," Medford Mail Tribune, October 3, 1931, page 4

    A young man giving the name of Wilder, arrested in Grants Pass yesterday morning for the theft Friday afternoon of an Austin car belonging to J. A. LeDieu, was returned to Medford and placed in the county jail by Paul Jennings, deputy sheriff.
    As a number of shoe samples, stolen from an Essex car belonging to H. C. Hanson of Salem, were found in his possession, Wilder was also charged with the theft Thursday of Hanson's car, which was later found in the Medford residential district. Keys belonging to Jess P. Medaris, which had been taken from the Medaris car, were found on Wilder.

Medford Mail Tribune,
October 4
, 1931, page 10

    Five youths, ranging from 10 to 18 years in age, and from midget to giant in size, appeared before Judge Alex Sparrow of the juvenile court this morning for alleged thefts ranging from chickens to autos. It developed there were two causes of their straying from the straight paths--staying our late nights and home environment.
    Bernard Wilder, 16 of Grants Pass, in a written statement, admitted he took parked autos when he found them, and the notion to steal moved. He stole, he said, to drive between this city and Grants Pass. If there was property in the cars, he took it and hid it in woodsheds. He balked at going to school and liked to take girls for auto rides. Kin said they could do nothing with him, and Chief of Police Clatous McCredie told the court his father deserted his mother before he was born.
    A. Hart, alleged leader of the Phoenix chicken thief gang, after three days in jail, was sentenced to the state reform school and paroled with the promise he "would come home nights and mind his folk."
     Victor Royston and Edwin Eccles, both 16, charged with stealing motors, including one from Mayor Wilson's washing machine, and an 11-year-old boy, who did not know what it was all about, told their story to the court. Chief of Police McCredie said he acted as "lookout for the older boys." He was badly scared and was no bigger than a minute.
    Eccles told the court he stole the motors to sell and buy a bicycle, something that he always wanted. He rode Royston's wheel, but wanted one of his own. He would not steal, he said, a bicycle belonging to another boy, but felt it was not bad to steal from men to buy a wheel. The Chief of Police said he was of a roving family, "and had been a nuisance all summer with his stealing." He was arrested last summer, and was freed upon the representation of his parents that they intended to leave.
    It was Royston's second entanglement with the law in 30 days, the police said.
    All were placed on probation, after stern lectures.

Medford Mail Tribune,
October 6
, 1931, page 2

    The members of the "Roxy Ann gang" appeared before County Judge Alex Sparrow of the juvenile court this morning and were paroled to their parents, with instructions to report every Saturday. The boys, who "wisecracked" when first apprehended, spent two days in the county jail and were in no wise facetious when they stood before the judge this morning.
    They were: Earl O'Neill, 14, William Olsen, 15, Earl Jones, 14 and Robert Skinner, 15. They were accused of stealing another boy's bicycle, building fires in the boiler of the Owen-Oregon lumber plant and purloining a steam whistle. The bicycle has been returned, repaired, to the owner, and the lads will find the steam whistle and return it also, they promised.
    It developed that the four lads had been playing hookey from the junior high school, and all promised to attend in the future.
    Skinner told the court that he had an uncle who had been in the state reform school. He told the others the uncle's glowing report of life in what Chief of Police McCredie called a "young penitentiary." The court admonished the youths that "the reform school is no summer resort. That's where Kingsley started, and you all know where he ended."
    Chief of Police McCredie told the court that he thought the boys had "learned a lesson and were taking things more seriously than three days ago."
    The parents of the youths were present at the hearing and attorney Allison Moulton appeared in behalf of the O'Neill lad. All were declared to be good boys who worked, "but had a streak the past month."
Medford Mail Tribune, November 2, 1931, page 5

Mother Wants Boys Aided
To the Editor:
    What can we do for our boys? No work, no money, and no place to go to spend an evening without money.
    There is a bunch of boys wandering around in town, not bad boys, but full of energy. Boys of parents who are not affiliated with any church.
    If the boy could find a little recreation at times. Why not a junior community chest?
    Food kitchens and all are fine, but oh for a place of amusement for our boys.
A Mother  (Name on File)
"Communications," Medford Mail Tribune, November 29, 1931, page 8

    With "volunteer" high school labor and 15 workers from the C.W.A., construction of walks at the senior high school grounds was progressing well today.
    The workers are also grading the grounds, preparatory to planting of the lawn, and Medford's basketeers, under temporary suspension for painting of an Ashland barn, are showing themselves to be mighty hand with the pick and shovel and are really putting out some good work, school officials stated today.
Medford Mail Tribune, March 8, 1934, page 3

    "Before we know it, some child is going to get drowned in that awful dredge hole near the north city limits" was the ominous warning issued today by Chief of Police Clatous McCredie, in regard to the habit of small boys of swimming in the pools made by the excavation of the big power shovel at the Medford Concrete Construction Company's rock crusher on Bear Creek.
    "In the first place, the creek is sluggish and filthy at this time of year," said the chief. "No one can foresee what diseases may be contracted there." He explained that at the point where the youngsters swim, the huge shovel has scooped away the bottom some places to a depth of only a few inches, but in others to 10 feet deep.
    The sluggish waters of Bear Creek are so muddy that it is impossible to see the bottom at any depth, and tiny boys, wading about, may fall into the holes at any time. Wading is not the most treacherous pastime, however. It is an accepted fact among the small fry along the creek that no swimming expedition is complete without a raft. Although Cass Wymore, foreman at the cement company plant, spends most of his spare time knocking these rafts apart, the children build them faster than he can destroy them.
    The danger of such rafts was pointed out by Chief McCredie, who stated that last week six small children, one of them a girl of three, were all out on one tiny raft hardly capable of supporting one grown man--and not one of the six could swim!
    "The vivid memory of the tragedy which took the life of little Buster Medley at that spot last year should be deterrent enough to the children and to their parents, but apparently isn't. The only way whereby another fatal accident can be averted is for the parents to exert iron restraint and forbid their children going near Bear Creek at all," McCredie said.
    "The best way to stop the practice is to send the children to a pool where they will be properly supervised, or for the parents to accompany the children to one of the many nearby streams where the danger is nil, either from a sanitary point of view, or from the danger of drowning," the chief advised.
Medford Mail Tribune, July 18, 1935, page 3

    The idea when playing with slingshots is not to hit anything that breaks, and especially not to run away after the property is destroyed, is the opinion of two local juveniles who were picked up by city police officers for breaking windows at the Southern Oregon Sales packing plant early this week.
    According to the report filed at the station, the two, whose names were not disclosed, were signaled into the police station after they had reportedly broken several panes last Sunday afternoon. Aged 12 or 13, the youngsters had apparently not reckoned with the results, for when given a talking-to by the officers, they were thoroughly frightened and promised to put way their weapons.
    "Slingshots can cause considerable damage," the officers said, "especially when the youngster has little regard for the rights and property of others. Several reports have been brought in here to the effect that street lamps provide an excellent target, and while we do not like to arrest youngsters, we will if it doesn't stop."
Medford News, December 4, 1935, page 1

    A small girl living beyond Gold Hill had been out among the hired help and picked up quite a number of swear words of which her mother had labored in vain to break her of using. After the last outbreak her mother told her to pack up her suitcase and leave, as she wouldn't have little girls around who talked like that. She insisted on it, so the little girl packed her suitcase and sat down on the front step looking very forlorn.
    A neighbor lady came up the path and inquired if her mother was at home. The little girl answered, "How in the h----- do I know, I don't live here anymore."
Central Point American, October 1, 1936, page 1

    Mr. Cummings is also on the special police force of this town and has had many interesting experiences.
    When asked how he goes about to arrest a person he replied: "Grab 'im by the neck and start for the jail."
    He avows that it is strictly against the law for anyone to paint a sign on the Central Point water tank, and that former classes who did this have always been found. The class of '28 was caught and made to repaint the tower, and he further warned that the next time will be final.
"Water Master 'Jim' on Duty Many Years," Central Pointer, Central Point High School, January 27, 1937, page 2

Just Looking Around
By Letha Hesselgrave
    As I sit at my desk in the study hall, I cannot overcome the desire to drop my lessons for a few minutes and let my eyes wander observingly over the room.
    The first thing that attracts my attention is the common schoolgirl's giggle. The girls seem to be laughing at a picture of some famous historian who has taken the eye of some artistic student and has been decorated with the usual mustache, eyeglasses, beard and curls. Pictures like this often make an otherwise boring history period one of restive drawing, and they sometimes furnish a good laugh.
    The next thing I notice amuses me greatly but is taken in just the opposite way by the person involved. My character is the very studious girl who is annoyed by the least sound and though pretending to be very interested in the next day's assignment is peering over her glasses with a very disapproving look on her face at the little groups of confabbing students.
    Then there is the study hall pest, who couldn't possibly get along without going down the aisles with his pencil in hand hitting people on the head and closing open books. And maybe if he's feeling unusually mischievous he'll give your arm a shove and spoil a page of ink-written work.
    My attention is now attracted to the back of the room, where one fun-filled boy seems to be emptying the pencil sharpener down the neck of another quite serious-looking boy. The latter immediately jumps "up an' at 'im"; hence the battle royale is on. Playful flying fists are soon stopped at the request of the dutiful teacher.
    Also in the far corner of the room I cannot help but see a pair of schoolday sweethearts looking shyly at each other, with sheepish grins on their faces.
    I cast my eyes to the back of the room on the face of the weary but ever-watchful teacher, her face filled with disgust and looking just a wee bit fagged. Oh well, it's all in a lifetime.
Central Pointer, Central Point High School newspaper, March 30, 1938, page 3

    Recent breaking up of a gang of youthful shoplifters here has brought to the attention of Ashland folks the problem of guiding youngsters along the straight and narrow path. In any community, a certain proportion of the boys are going to stray from the prescribed trail, and getting them back onto it is a delicate problem.
    Ashland, fortunately, has the advantage of a police force which understands this problem fully, and which attempts to apply remedies not only to protect the public, but also those which will work for the ultimate best interests of wayward boys. The record here, since Chief of Police C. P. Talent was appointed by Mayor Wiley about five years ago, is something of a surprise when analyzed.
    Of the 400 lads who have found themselves in the police station for one kind of mischief or another during Talent's term, but five of them have been "sent up." Four were sentenced to reform school and one to the state penitentiary. Of those feeling the brunt of the law, but one has chosen to become a law-abiding youth. Three of the others have been repeaters since their release from confinement.
    But of the other members of the 400, only 10 have ever been back into the police station for questioning or discipline. Which leaves about 390 lads who responded 100 per cent to the treatment received from Ashland police when they were caught on the wrong side of good citizenship. Of the 10 who have been in the station twice in the last five years, but two are figured to be "bad"--or repeaters. The cure has worked in all other cases.
    Perhaps a large proportion of the 400 cases handled by police could have been sent to reform school had the letter of the law been followed. But in Ashland, much thought has been given to the human values involved and a course has been followed which has produced the greatest good for the wrongdoers and which also has given society much better than average protection.
    Of course, Ashland police are not hampered in the performance of their job by a pack of hungry shysters, as are police in some other communities. Every time a culprit is rounded up here there are no hair-splitting barristers handcuffing justice--for a fee--and officers have been able to secure convictions in every case taken to court without exception in the last five years. It is this fatal effectiveness, together with an understanding of the problems of youth and of ways and means to meet them, that has helped the youngsters of Ashland keep out of serious trouble.
    Parents here should be thankful that Ashland has an understanding, intelligent police force. It is as important to the proper training of youth as public schools.
Southern Oregon Miner, Ashland, August 19, 1938, page 4

    Ashland police last night were tightening a net of evidence and confessions around a group of 12 local lads, all about 13 years of age, who have conducted a series of gang pilferings and till robberies during last several months.
    Most recent developments centered around the robbing of about $50 from the cash drawer of the Union Oil Company station here operated by Roy Frazier, and $130 in cash from the Ashland Hotel service station operated by Reed and Barnum, within the past 30 days.
    Three boys, whose names were withheld pending further developments, were involved in the cash robberies, while other thefts and acts of vandalism will include about a dozen, eight of whom have been rounded up for questioning within the last week, with four more to be picked up soon, Talent indicated.
    That a juvenile crime wave had been surging in this city for some time was known to police, but its exact nature was but recently uncovered with the recovery of six stolen guns last week, among other articles, and the investigation of several of the miscreants. Thursday of this week (yesterday) the alleged ringleader and his two accomplices in the robbing of service station tills were questioned at length and admitted participation and unburdened themselves in signed confessions. They said the three of them had robbed the Ashland Hotel station of $61 a few days ago, then proceeded to Medford where they spent the day "blowing" their money and stealing. They returned to Medford the following day on bicycles to continue their pilfering, caching their loot in Ashland, where two other lads found the stolen merchandise and turned it over to police. The booty included 10 pocket knives, two wallets, six comic books, two flashlights, two pair of shoes, socks and two combs. They admitted that two of them had twice stolen $25 in cash from the Union Oil station.
Several Cases Cleared
    The roundup has resulted in one boy admitting breaking into a car and robbing a woman's purse of about $12 during last spring's basketball tournament here, and also identified miscreants who shot out about $80 worth of street lights in Ashland last winter and spring.
    According to Chief of Police Talent, the boys have been allowed to roam the streets at all hours of the night, and lack discipline at home. "It is one of the worst cases I've yet seen, and one of the hardest to get to the bottom of," declared Talent last night. "There has been a gang of boys, some of them misguided, some vicious, carrying on 'organized' thievery and mischief here for some time. I believe we have the facts concerning all of them, however, and we won't stop until every last one of them has been brought to juvenile court."
    Police have to date recovered about $100 worth of stolen merchandise, but none of the $180 in cash known to have been taken has been found. The trio involved in the cash hauls were being held in jail early today, and probably will be taken before County Judge Earl Day in Medford.
Southern Oregon Miner, Ashland, August 12, 1938, page 1

    Four young amateur "counterfeiters"--three of them 13 years old and the other 15--received stiff lectures from city police and from their parents yesterday, after they confessed to manufacturing lead nickels which they used in drink vending and pinball machines.
    The boys told police they used a mold to make the "coins," pouring hot lead into the mold and then taking out the slugs, on one side of which was the imprint of a buffalo nickel.
    The youths told police they had been making the slugs for about two weeks, and that they had sold quite a few of them to other boys.
Medford Mail Tribune, May 12, 1940, page 12

    I was a kid even before WWII and lived in Medford, Ore. They built an army camp 13 miles north, "Camp White." It was a training camp as well as a POW camp.
    I lived on Jackson Street, so when the troop trains were rolling slow through town I would go down to the track and beg for handouts. We got "K" rations by the gob.
Art V. Smith, eBay auction listing, June 16, 2010

Loot from Burglary Recovered from Boys
    Central Point--Police Chief Oran Chastain apprehended three boys Tuesday with "the goods" in their possession, following a Sunday night burglary of the Fireside Inn in this city.
    The burglars--ages 10, 12 and 12--were found with the following:
    One large bag containing small chef's ladle, one door hasp, one barrel bolt, one comb, two knives, one corkscrew, one 1950 Teamster's AFL Local 962 badge, one roll confetti, one jar various size nails, one lime squeezer, one spoon, one packet personalized labels, 1,500 Fireside Inn liquor bottle check blanks, handful rusty screws, one toilet bowl rubber bulb, numerous Y Club cherry cocktail picks, one bundle wax paper, one cocktail shaker strainer, and one First National Bank money bag containing two light bulbs, one seafood cocktail glass and one cocktail glass.
    What the young boys expected to do with the loot was not known by Chief Chastain. The boys have been turned over to county juvenile authorities.
Medford Mail Tribune, September 24, 1952, page 1

Informant: Sharon Sheperd                            Student: Eddie Smith
    I asked my mother something she really could remember from her childhood. She was in high school in the '50s and these are the times she remembers most. Especially the dancing!
    It was the last part of her junior year, 1958, and she wanted to throw a dance that no one would forget. The theme of the dance was "A Walk Through the Park."
    She wanted a park bench and two mannequins for props. She got permission for the bench from Hawthorne Park. Not having a truck and whatnot, she got some of the football players to help her carry it down through the streets of Medford. The mannequins she got from Robinson's (she put her brother's clothes on one and a dress of her own on the other).
    The dance was held at the YMCA.
    They made construction paper trees and grass for a park scene. Then used crepe paper and kleenex flowers for the rest. They charged 15¢ at the door for singles and 25¢ for couples.
    Since a lot of times a dance would not get going, they started it with a dance they called the snowball.
    One couple gets out on the floor and a little bit of the song is played, then the music stops, the couple splits and finds a new partner. Soon everyone is on the floor (a few exceptions): any dance sort could be used.
    It was informal, so what they wore were bobby socks, mid-calf-length skirts, sweaters, pants rolled up, ponytails and crew cuts.
    Her favorite song was "Sh-Boom!" Other songs were "Little Darlin'," "Rock Around the Clock," "Crying in the Chapel," "Pony Time," "Runaround Sue," "Chantilly Lace," "Let the Good Times Roll," "Green Onions," and all of Elvis' songs.
    Fats Domino was her idol: "I"m Walking," "Ain't That a Shame," "Maybe Baby." Other dances they did were the Dirty Boogie (Snake Hips), Jitterbug, the Bop, Stroll, Truckin', Twist, the Pony, Freeze. Refreshments served were punch and homemade cookies.
Back Track II, prepared by Medford Senior High School students, May 1980, page 42

Sawed Tree Traps Two on Roxy Ann Saturday
    City police reported Sunday that a young couple had been trapped on Roxy Ann Mountain Saturday night when someone sawed a tree down to cover the narrow road.
    The couple, who said they had been looking at the signs, found the road blocked about half way to the top when they attempted to return around midnight. Police investigating the event said a power saw had been used to make a quick and efficient job.
Medford Mail Tribune, August 26, 1957, page 1  Larry Slessler takes credit for making the final cut that felled the tree. He and his friends had cut it part way beforehand, and verified in advance they would trap many pairs of lovers "looking at the signs"--not just the reporting couple.

Last revised June 16, 2024