The Infamous Black Bird Southern Oregon History, Revised

Trails, Roads, Streets and Air
Notes on Southern Oregon's transportation infrastructure.

The Siskiyou Trail
Notes on the first trail over the Siskiyous.
The Applegate Trail
The first travelers over the Southern Route in 1846.

The Preacher Train
The train that followed the Southern Route to Jackson County in 1853.
The Umpqua Canyon
The history of the worst part of the trail.
Early Roads
Twenty years of dedicating roads by the Jackson County commissioners.

Road Work
How they built them, how the users complained.
The Dollarhide Toll Road
Notes on the toll road over the Siskiyous.
Going to Crater Lake
Before it was a day trip.
The Railroad Arrives
News as the railroad inches to and through Jackson County 1883-87.
The Oregon & California Railroad
Notes on the railroad that linked Southern Oregon with the world.
The Depots
The histories of Medford's railroad depots--one of which became Talent's depot.
The Rogue River Valley Railway
Jacksonville connects to the main line.
The Pacific & Eastern Railroad
Medford tries to connect with the East.
The Bicycle Arrives
Like the rest of the country, Southern Oregon went bike-crazy in the 1890s.
The Automobile Arrives
For a while, Medford had more than anywhere else in the world.
The Motorcar Bug
Bill Miller's history of the automobile in Southern Oregon.
William M. Hodson
The Rogue Valley's first auto dealer and mechanic.
The Pacific Highway
Jackson County was the first to pave their section.
The Crater Lake Highway
From Medford to Oregon's only national park.
Medford Streets
From axle-deep mud to asphalt.
Either bitulithic or brickolithic that would "last as long as the Pyramids."
The problem began early.
Street Lights
At first they were to keep drivers off the sidewalk--not to light the night.
The Interstate 5 Viaduct
Notes on the controversial route through Medford.
Medford's First Airplane
The newspapers called it "Old Sturdy"--though it had "May Fly" on the tail.
Newell Barber Field
Medford's was the first municipal airport in the state.
Pacific Air Transport
Medford's own--one of the lines that united to form United Airlines.
They used to be important.

Last revised June 13, 2020