Following the discovery of gold in the winter of 1851-2, Jacksonville, Oregon, became a melting pot of races, classes, and cultures as ambitious individuals pursued the promise of riches.  The offer of free land brought settlers seeking opportunity.  The influx of miners and settlers attracted merchants with goods to sell and opportunists of all kinds.  Historic Jacksonville, Inc. brings the history of Jacksonville and Southern Oregon to life through the stories of the people, places, and things that have contributed to who we are today.

1932 Living History Is Back!







It’s 1932 Depression Era Jacksonville and Ben and Carrie Beekman, the children of Jacksonville’s wealthiest and most prominent pioneer family, are closing up their 1870s family home.  And you are invited to visit! 

Become part of this 1-hour living history “play” as you interact with Carrie, Ben, family members, and friends as they comment on 1932 Jacksonville, family life, and growing up in the late 1800s.  Step back in time at 10:30am, 11:30am, 1pm or 2pm on April 8 or May 13.   Click here to plan your visit!



March 14 — 3.14 — is Pi (π) Day!  Pi, represented by the Greek symbol (π), is an “indefinite” number and part of the formulas for calculating the circumference and area of a circle.  Ancient civilizations have approximated it for almost 4,000 years — the closest calculation being 3.14159.

You might not care about Pi or even think it applies to you, but you might be surprised.  Pi is used in most calculations for building and construction, quantum physics, communications, music theory, medical procedures, air travel, and space flight, to name a few.  And do you count your daily steps?

So what does Pi have to do with Pie?  Click here to learn how Pi Day became a national holiday in 2009, celebrated with π themed activities and antics, and of course with lots of pie!

But when we think of March holidays, we usually think of the Irish….


On March 17th, regardless of your origins, everyone is Irish!

Did you know that the tradition of a St. Patrick’s Day parade began in the U.S.?  In fact, it actually preceded the founding of the United States!  While people in Ireland celebrated St. Patrick as early as the 1600s, the first record of a St. Patrick’s Day parade anywhere dates to March 17, 1601, in a Spanish colony in what is now St. Augustine, Florida.

More than a century later, homesick Irish soldiers serving in the English military marched in New York City on March 17, 1772, to honor the Irish patron saint. Today, that parade is the world’s oldest civilian parade and the largest in the United States, with over 150,000 participants.

19th Century Jacksonville certainly had its Irish pioneers and settlers—P.J. Ryan, Patrick Donegan, John Guilfoyle, Jeremiah Nunan, Delia O’Grady Nunan, Ellen Orth, William Turner, and Patrick McMahon to name a few.

Click here to learn more about St. Patrick’s Day celebrations!

And there are lots of virtual ways to
Explore Historic Jacksonville!

Want an overview?  Watch our 30 minute video.
Want a quick sample?  Check out our daily Facebook and Instagram  posts. 
Want to dig deeper?  Visit one of the 50 sites on our Walk through History blog.

Enjoy a visit to the historic C.C. Beekman House when
Mrs. Julia Beekman “Invites You to Call”
for a tour of her 1873 home.  

Or visit many of Jacksonville’s original residences through our 45 minute
“Step Back in Time” Historic Home video 

Tour Jacksonville’s pioneer cemetery, one of the oldest cemeteries in the Pacific Northwest that has remained in continuous use through our new 45 minute
Pioneer Cemetery tour. 

Join us for our on-going “Thirsty Thursday” saloon series featuring early Jacksonville stories of beer, wine, whiskey, saloons, and “entrepreneurs”!

So many ways to see the places and learn about the people who transformed a gold rush town into the 19th Century commercial, governmental, and social hub of Southern Oregon!  Enjoy the treasure trove of Jacksonville History on this website plus daily history trivia on our Facebook  and  Instagram pages.  Find out how interesting and fun history can be!


Jacksonville-1883 Lithograph Jacksonville 1883 (lithograph)

When Oregon was admitted to the Union in 1859, Jacksonville was the largest inland trade center in the new state, and Jacksonville and its residents played a dominant role in early Oregon history and statehood. But when the railroad by-passed Jacksonville in the 1880s, the town slowly sank into oblivion. However, that oblivion also proved to be the town’s salvation, preserving the historic buildings, homes, and character that you see today—Jacksonville’s National Historic Landmark District. Today, these landmarks live again through the efforts of the City of Jacksonville, volunteers, and private owners so that you can again experience Jacksonville in its heyday.

© 2021 Historic Jacksonville, Oregon